- NEW DVD Series – Stone Setting with Bezels
- Tube Set Charm by Kim St. Jean
- Prong Basket Pendant by Kim St. Jean
- NEW DVD Series – Stone Setting with Cold Connections
- New DVD Series – Stone Setting with Wire
- NEW DVD Series: Introduction to Stone Setting by Kim St. Jean
- Featured Tool: Bracelet Bending Plier
- NEW Dvd by Eva Sherman
- Fun, Fast Fold Forming DVD Series
- Double Band Ear Cuff from Alex Simkin
Jewelry Polishing Kit
by Judy Ellis, Wire-Sculpture.com
Tool of the Week for August 11, 2014
This week’s Featured Tool is the Jewlery Polishing Kit
Get that smooth polished “tumbler finish” on your silver jewelry, stones, gemstones and more with our rock and gemstone polishing jewelry tumblers. These jewelry tumblers are ideal for home jewelers, rock collectors, children or grandchildren who like to discover and polish stones.
Today I thought we’d revisit what a Tumbler does and some of its functions. We get a lot of questions about how and when to use a tumbler, so I’ve grabbed a few suggestions from another Tip on our Blog and I thought I’d share them with you.
What is a Tumbler?
There are two types of tumblers available: a rotating tumbler and a vibratory tumbler. They each serve a basic need for anyone working with rough stones that want to achieve a more finished product for use in their jewelry creations.
Lortone Rotary Tumbler for Jewelry or Rocks
In a rotating tumbler, you have a rubber drum or barrel that is filled with different levels of polishing medium, water and the stones that you want to “tumble”. In this case, the rocks continuously fall over each other, polishing slowly, much in the same way tumbling waves from the ocean polish sea glass and stones.
And, like the action of the waves, it takes a lot of time to polish stones from the rough to a highly polished stage. It is not unusual to take two weeks to a month or more to tumble a batch of stones to the desired finish.
The advantage of using a rotating tumbler is the fact that it will reshape natural rough material, reducing and rounding any angular points on the material.
The vibrating tumblers don’t actually “tumble” but rather they agitate side to side at a high rate, creating a moving action that carries the polish over and between the stones in it.
When to use a Tumbler:
So how does this work for your jewelry? And what do you have to use to achieve the results you want? By tumbling your jewelry, three things are accomplished.:
- First, it cleans your work, removing dirt and any oils that have accumulated on your stones and/or wire.
- Second, it is lightly polishing the metal in your pieces by using stainless steel shot that will burnish, or polish the metal.
- And third, by leaving the piece in the tumbler long enough, the metal or wire becomes what is referred to as “work-hardened”. (I believe this last step applies mostly to those of you who work in dead soft wire and need this added step to harden the wire.)
What’s included in our Jewelry Polishing Kit?
For the beginner or the professional, this tumbler is the ideal tumbler for the home jeweler or lapidary. It has a 3lb capacity with one rubber barrel. Does a quality job of hardening wire and brings a professional finish to gold and silver wire jewelry. Can also be used to tumble polish rough gem material. Perfect size for the home jeweler short on space.
- Lortone Tumbler Model 3A
- 1 pound of Premium Jeweler’s Stainless Steel Shot
- 8 oz. bottle of Shine Brite Burnishing Compound
Pick up your Jewelry Polishing Kit today and complete your jewelry toolbox!