I'm new to the jewelry scene and was wondering about the tumblers that are available. Does a tumbler work for all metals, including precious metal? What is the difference between a jewelry tumbler and a rock tumbler?
The Lortone Model 3A is a rotary rock and jewelry tumbler with a rubber barrel that uses different media to grind, work-harden and/or polish metal jewelry, metal clay and precious and non-precious metal components.
There is no real difference in the tumbling machine to polish rock or metal, it has more to do with the polishing media inside the tumbler barrel. To tumble rock, use the rock tumbling abrasive and polish kit. To polish and work-harden any metal jewelry, use a stainless steel shot mix and a burnishing compound (water and a small amount of mild dish detergent will work well). Do not tumble jewelry with stones, glass, porous material or pearls.
- Sandra Lupo, Jewelry Designer and Instructor and Swarovski crystal Ambassador