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Polishing Tube Setting Tools

I bought a cheap set of tube setting tools…a graduated set of basically large cup burrs. I knew that the spherical cups were left with machining marks in them, but I figured I could polish these out. I have been using a small grinding stone and then my silicone points in white, black, blue and pink. Altho’ I’m getting a pretty good finish, there are still deep scratches that aren’t polishing out completely and dealing with each of the large tools (~9mm) is taking 40 to 60 minutes. I guess I am not spending enough time getting the big scratches out, but I think I need some other coarse grits besides what I have and I can’t think of where to get some very small grinding stones in the shape of balls or points. As I get towards the smaller tools, I’ll need some quite small tools, altho’ the very small ones (~2mm) probably don’t have as rough a surface as some of the large ones. I have a few diamond grinding points around here…I suppose I could try those…any other ideas? It’s a nice set, but it would be good to polish them rather than have to do a lot of work on the tube settings once they are closed with these. -royjohn

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Hi RoyJohn,

are your setting tools work hardened…? if so, maybe soften them first, and then fix, and then re-harden after…

for a mirror polish, i wish they sold sized of ball bur burnishers…

i was/ am in a similar predicament …with my beading tools…my beading tool was getting worn down and craggly…and i did not have extras in that particular size…

it seemed like tool hardened steel…regular round burs would not cut…i had diamond round burs from a set i picked up at Quartzsite…the smallest was about 1.0mm so I was only able to try it out on one size beading tool…(i looked up 3 brands of beading tools to make a reference size chart) that cut the tool steel, but left very course grind marks…i then used progressively finer silicone points to clean it up (and a dressing stone to reshape points often)…

I was too impatient/ lazy to try softening the steel…whereby i think my round burs would have worked better, less coarse… and i have more sizes to choose from)…i think i still would need to polish with silicone points…i broke the round ball burnishing tip off of my beading tool refresher tool i had (in the size i needed…drat)…

i also ordered more extra size beading tools, to avoid this predicament in the future…they are rather inexpensive…

julie

Royjohn…I posted a similar question a while ago. I ordered a set from one of our trusted suppliers that turned out to be crap and returned them. I then started to make my own using brass rod and various sized half round burrs on my little lathe. They worked well, but I decided I really had better ways to spend my time. Then someone replied to my post suggesting that I look at Smoothset by Flow at www.flowstudiosupply.esty.com. I order a set in their full range and they are well made. I still use my brass tools on some of my known applications, but the Smoothset tools also work well. Good luck…Rob

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Hi Rob,
I remember when this came up before and you bought that set, which looks very nice. The set I bought has a few more sizes, but does require work…and now that it is taking so long, I wonder if I made the right decision. Maybe with the right tools it will go faster. I have more time than money and don’t make jewelry for sale, so…

I went to look at Flow Studio, but there was a typo. Try this one: