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Polishing gold jewelry

I would like suggestions on polishing small areas on the inside
surfaces of gold jewelry. These areas are too small for me to contact
using my handpiece. Presently, I blast the inside areas with glass
beads which yields a dull shine, but it could be better. My thought is
to use a tumbler with a fine rubber grit or polishing compound. As a
dental technician years ago, we put our chrome castings in a tumbler
with steel pellets, but that seems too harsh for the softer gold
alloys. I feel this approach would damage the prongs and other
delicate areas. Any suggestions are appreciated. Thanks. Bob P.

I’ve always used matchsticks and toothpicks with rouge and cotton
threads (thrums) held in a vice to get into holes.

I can’t say that I have ever had any problem with stainless steel
shot for burnishing my gold or silver in the tumbler. And, you can
get different shapes and sizes. Unless your shot has burrs and rough
edges, it shouldn’t erode your gold.

A. Austin

there is an assortment of polishing wheels available. I would
actually try rio grande catalog (or another jeweler supply) for
gold, try a brass mounted brush or an end-wire brush (for those tight
places) this will give you a sand-blasted type look. From there,
for a higher polish the same types of brushes are available in
bristle brushes in different grades (extra soft, soft, med. and
stiff) I find that these can usually get in where I need to . I
could also thrum string with some zam on it, but this usually only
works in straight-aways. good luck and happy polishing!!!

The best solution I have found to polish those hard to reach inside
of the ring places is the magnetic tumblers. They are fast (10-30
min.) and leave a nice shine on the surfaces you just cannot reach
with a polish wheel. They work exceptionally well on plat. as well as
silver and gold. The little pin shot reaches almost every nook and
cranny you can imagine. The cost for the smaller size tumbler is
around $500. but is justified in the diminished time spent at the
buff. For pieces with intricate surface detail they can not be beat.
The burnish the surfaces with out removing any metal so the detail is
not destroyed. I have a production piece that I tumble and then polish
lightly with red rouge and they are finished. Great piece of equipment
and well worth the money. Frank Goss

Bob, If you are doing very much of this type of item I would suggest
a magnetic Pin Tumbler. They seem to get into the dangest small
places. And are widely used in pre polishing cast in place diamond


Frank, I’m not familiar with “magnetic tumblers” i.e. manufactures.
Can or would you suggest a brand name to investigate. I use a rotary
tumbler and it does ok but I am looking for one with more power.

Barb McLaughlin
Taylor River Jewelry Designs

Barbara; The brand I use and have used several different sizes off.
All of which have done a great job. Raytech Centrifugal Magnetic
Tumbler. I presently use the model CMF 400. It is the smallest and
only handles about 6-10 items at a time. I have also used the largest
one and one of the middle sizes. All are excellent equipment and do
the same job. The larger units hold more pieces and polish faster.
Money is of course the deciding factor… I just ran a load of jump
rings in my polisher and they really look great. Makes for easy clean
up and polish after soldering… Frank Goss