Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

What kind of polsihing device should i choose?


#1

Hello guys! I’m a new member here, it’s nice to meet you! English is
not my native language, so please sorry me for that.

I’m a very new in jewelry, i’m trying to create my first pieces with
help of 3d printing right now. I would like to ask for your advice in
that matter.

I would like to ask you what kind of polishing device i should
choose.

After casting process, i want to polish my pieces by myself, because
casting company probably gona polish them too hard in they tumblers,
and i gona lose alot of details on my pieces.

I’m planning to polish my pieces 1)After casting 2)After i sulfur
them.

After sulfuring i want to polish the tops to make nice contrast. I
know there is barrel tumblers, magnetic tumblers and little hand
wheel that you use to hand polish things. I’m low on funds, so i
would like to know, what is the bare minimum of hardware i need to do
what i want? I was thinking if i can get away with only basic barrel
tumbler. Can i use a basic tumbler with smaller media to clean my
pieces after casting, and use the same tumbler with bigger media to
polish them after sulfuring process?

Or small barrel tumbler will not be enough to polish my pieces after
casting, and i would need to purchase magnetic tumbler that uses
very fine media for that?

Thank you in advance :slight_smile: /


#2

Metal finishing, ie from the rough casting or stamping or
fabricating doesnt need any fancy barrelling kit. All you need as a
beginner is some kind of motor, it can be electric or gasoline or
even a water wheel, depends on whats available and where you are.,
then a drive belt to a pulley on a shaft supported in a couple of
bearings. which have a taper thread on one or each end.

On to that taper you screw on various wheels, from compressed
scotchbrite to sisal to cotton. these can be had from 1in in dia up
to 12 in .

then you have polishing compounds based on waxes in block form you
apply to the spinning mop, then you hold the work to the wheel where
the compound does the work.

Simple.

Thats the basics. Theres a lot more to it than that of course, but
its a learning curve for you and all the info is out there and with
jewellery finishing suppliers. you find it all on line.

Ted.


#3

Greetings

Welcome to the forum. It would help to have an idea of what size
object you are polishing. What kind of finish you are hoping for.
And what the volume, how many pieces you want to polish.

I have polished with a wheel for 25 years and am only now
experimenting with other finishes.

I tumble for a first finish and to clean out the small spaces. I
some times use a paste of baking soda and a small amount of olive
oil as a binder on a soft tooth brush to get into detail. I have
burnish finished Sterling with 0000 Bronze wool.

Much depends on the shine you want. Good luck with your work and
have fun doing it.

Don Meixner


#4

A flat stick with a polishing cloth is as low budget as you can get.
And if you are just highlighting it will work great. Can be any cloth
with polishing compound on it. Good luck. Eventually get yourself a
flex shaft.

What voltage do you have? Where are you. I have an American 110v
motor and shaft I might give to the right beginner. SD


#5

Welcome, Sirin. As you’re darkening with liver of sulphur, a tumbler
with fine media could remove the patina from the crevices where
you’d like it to remain. And because you’ll be producing quite a few
pieces at one time, hand-polishing might not be practical. So perhaps
a tumbler with medium or large media would be a good start. It might
be useful to test a few pieces first, as some media could also remove
the crisp edges from your work.

Best regards,
Lorraine


#6

hello,

i would say to first consider what type of item you would like to
polish/ finish, and what type of finish you desire.

is it flat?
is it highly detailed, with recesses, or raised areas?
does it have crisp edges?
does it have rounded edges?

what type of finish do you want?
rough?
matte?
satin?
shiny?
mirror finish?

different tools and techniques produce different results.

select the tool(s) that will give you the result you want.

also, when you are finishing/ polishing, you are refining the
surface by removing scratches and imperfections, and replacing them
with progressively finer scratches, until you reach the desired
finish, by using a progressively finer tools (ie: files, burs,
sandpaper, abrasive wheels and points, rubber wheels and points,
buffs and polishing compounds, tumbling media, steel burnishing shot
or pins, just to name a few, which all come in different cuts,
grits, and profile shapes)

the finish produces can be rough, matte, satin, shiny, mirror
finish, and everything in between.

when i was just starting out i got jewelry tool catalogs and read
them coverto cover to get familiar with what tools were available,
and found that very helpful, and fun too!

julie


#7

Oh, Don! Love the baking soda and olive oil with toothbrush thing! I
shall be pinching that idea - thanks for sharing.

Janet


#8
After casting process, i want to polish my pieces by myself,
because casting company probably gona polish them too hard in they
tumblers, and i gona lose alot of details on my pieces. 

The casting companies can usually clean up castings just fine. In
any case, tumbling shouldn’t ever remove a lot of detail. It removes
much less than hand finishing. The bigger question is what kind of
surface will you get from your 3D printer? It won’t be better after
casting.

I'm planning to polish my pieces 1)After casting 2)After i sulfur
them. 

After sulfuring i want to polish the tops to make nice contrast. I
know there is barrel tumblers, magnetic tumblers and little hand
wheel that you use to hand polish things. I’m low on funds, so i
would like to know, what is the bare minimum of hardware i need to
do what i want? I was thinking if i can get away with only basic
barrel tumbler. Can i use a basic tumbler with smaller media to clean
my pieces after casting, and use the same tumbler with bigger media
to polish them after sulfuring process?

Or small barrel tumbler will not be enough to polish my pieces after
casting, and i would need to purchase magnetic tumbler that uses very
fine media for that? "

You would benefit from a basic jewelry making class. The finishing
process involves smoothing, burnishing and final polish. A vibratory
tumbler is used for smoothing and is run with a mild abrasive media
in a liquid. The burnishing step is usually run in a rotary with
stainless steel or a very high powered vibratory tumbler. Final
finish is only used with mirror finish and it is a dry process run in
a vibratory tumbler. The sulfur or darkening is usually applied in
the last stages of the smoothing process. If done to soon, it is all
removed, if done after all abrasive media, the highlights have to be
done by hand.

A magnetic pin finisher is for very specific kind of finish on
detailed pieces - like maybe a tennis bracelet with lots of
openings.

It is sometimes used to remove investment after casting.

Judy Hoch, G. G.
Author - Tumble Finishing for Handmade Jewelry


#9

Tumbling does not remove much detail, no more than polishing on
buffing wheels.


#10

It is perfect for the stuff it is perfect for. It is good on deep
detail in compact work.