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Tumblers-- yes, again :)


#1

I know we’ve rehashed the issue of tumblers many times, but I’m
finally at the stage where I want to buy one (this week) and am
having a hard time deciding which to get.

I do very small scale jewelry – earrings, rings, pins, chains,
– would only tumble 1 or 2 items at a time. The purpose of the
tumbler is to take off the film left by casting, and polish up
chains, etc. Jewelry is purely a hobby for me. I don’t want to
spend much money on the tumbler. I’m trying to decide between
the following:

  1. mini rotary tumbler, 1 qt, about $70 (US)
  2. Vigor vibratory tumbler, TM 103, bowl is 10" diameter, 4"
    high, about $150
  3. Tumble Vibe economy tumbler, bowl is 8" diameter, about $100

Please HELP me decide. I really would prefer to go with (1)
because of price, unless you all advise against it. Also, the
media I am planning to buy is stainless mixed shot with just
water and a chunk of soap (per Orchid recommendations).

A very BIG thanks in advance,

Rita


#2

Hi–I’ve been using a small rotary tumbler for just the purposes
you mention—with Stainless steel shot–but instead of soap I
use Rio’s liquid for tumblers-- it gets diluted with water and it
lasts a long long time. My cast pieces come out looking great, I
usually tumble for about 3 to four hours ( or less). I’ve been
very pleased as long as my pieces don’t get bigger than the
barrel. Stainless steel shot is a must if you don’t want to be
fussing too much, It’s made life so much easier, I wish I had
gotten one a really long time ago. Sandra


#3

I know we’ve rehashed the issue of tumblers many times, but I’m
finally at the stage where I want to buy one (this week) and am
having a hard time deciding which to get.

Rita,

A suggestion by Metalsmth was to contact Midway, a gun/reloading
supplier. I called to get a copy of their catalog which will
arrive in 4-6 weeks, but asked the person who answered the phone
what their tumbler cost. It’s a vibratory tumbler and runs around
$45.00. I don’t know the capacity, forgot to ask. Midway’s phone
number is 800-243-3220. Metalsmth says his has lasted for years.
Worth a phone call, at least.

Sharon in Dallas


#4

Buy the smallest one. You don’t need a large bowl, the larger
the bowl the more stainless steel shot you’ll have to invest in.
I bought a large vibrating tumbler, and then added 7 lbs of shot
. . . and my bowl isn’t even a quarter full! (just a thought,
make sure you get the stainless steel that won’t rust if you
leave water in the tumbler for a few days!. There are two kinds
of stainless!)


#5

Hi Folks,

The Midway tumbler holds 600 9mm casings or 350 .223 rifle
casings. This translates out to about 250 rings easily. They
are made to be used with corncob or shell media. I don’t know
if they will work with shot. It might be too heavy a load. I
have one and have used it for it’s intended purpose and they are
great. I have used both cob and a plastic media with great
results. It is a well built machine.

Regards,

Skip

                                  Skip Meister
                                NRA Endowment and
                                   Instructor
                                @Skip_Meister
                                11/18/9702:31:38

#6

hi- re your stainless shot tumbler, if you only do one or two
pieces, why buy a big one?

I pour the shot into a plastic peanut butter jar that i used a
hot pick to make holes in to drain the shot, BTW- works great.
anne


#7

Hi Anne-

Are you talking about the P.B. jar as a way to drain/clean your
shot, or have you devised some new and innovative tumbler
design?

Dave

Dave Sebaste
Sebaste Studio
Charlotte, NC (USA)
dave@sebaste.com
http://www.sebaste.com


#8

Hi–a kitchen strainer is also very handy for draining shot. My
very small rotary tumbler handles about ten small( ring size
objects), and requires a small amount of shot. The mixed shapes,
stainless steel shot works very well on cast pieces–about four
hours gets them looking really smooth --but not necessarily
mirror finish. Sandra


#9
  I pour  the shot into a plastic peanut butter jar that i
used a hot pick to make holes in to drain the shot, BTW- works
great. anne 

To clean the shot, I use a pillow case. Throw all the shot and
liquid into the pillow case, rinse with warm water, put
dishwashing soap in the pillow case, soap up, and rinse. Shot
stays in the pillow case and can be poured back into the tumbler
bowl easily!