(Topic ID: 63005)

Best way to polish parts in a tumbler?

By alb0711

10 years ago


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  • 16 posts
  • 11 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 10 years ago by loren3233
  • Topic is favorited by 6 Pinsiders

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    #1 10 years ago

    I'm in the process of rebuilding a 1971 Playball and have read posts where folks polish their parts in a tumbler. I'm new to part tumbling and have a few questions -

    What kind of media is best to use? Can odd shaped parts like chrome chanels be polished this way? How long do you typically let the parts run through the tumbler?

    Thanks!

    #2 10 years ago

    most people use walnut media (which is available in both course and fine), however some use corncob as well.

    I've used the resin pyramid shaped media for parts that had surface rust on them to remove that and then switched the parts into another bowl with walnut media.

    the size of your tumbler will dictate the # and size of the parts that you can tumble. you want to make sure that you have enough room for the parts to move freely so that the media can vibrate over every surface of the parts. if the part is too large, there's a good chance that it can damage the plastic vibratory bowl.

    I typically will put in a batch of parts and let them run overnight or for a 24-hour period. if the parts look like they need more tumbling, I just repeat and run them for another 12-24 hours

    #3 10 years ago

    Walnut is a good choice, it can be found cheap at a pet store (reptile or bird bedding) or crushed corn cob works well too just longer to tumble and shorter life. Also, you'll want to pick up some FLITZ tumbling polish, great stuff. Time is all a matter of how dirty the parts are, it could take from 24 hours to 3 days, you can't over tumble. Set up in garage turn on at bed time and forget about it.

    #4 10 years ago

    Does anyone happen to know where to get a good tumbler in Canada?

    Sorry for the hijack, this thread just reminded me that I'd like to get one.

    #5 10 years ago

    +1 on the Flitz. Give it a good squirt all the way around on each load. Run it overnight or more as needed.

    Clean the parts with a degreaser before going into the tumbler.

    As far as Canada my only suggestion would be a large outdoor/sporting goods store (Cabellas ?). They'll have tumblers and media for gun casings.

    #6 10 years ago

    Thanks for the suggestion terry! I'll look into that.

    #7 10 years ago

    You can order tumblers off Amazon as well. I had a gift certificate from there and found a good one. You can also order Flitz, but they may arrive separate, since they usually come from other vendors. I use walnut. If you decide to go this route, be sure to get a fine steel brush, since this media likes to get in the head of your screws. A little annoying, but very much worth it.

    #8 10 years ago

    Thanks for the tips! Great idea to pick up the walnut at a pet supply.

    I got my tumbler on Amazon. If I did it again, I'd look for one with a bigger tub.

    #9 10 years ago

    What's better guys a rotating one or a vibrating tumbler?
    Would like to get one myself

    #10 10 years ago

    How much Flitz do you put in an average size tumbler? Couple drops?

    #11 10 years ago
    Quoted from singlebanana:

    If you decide to go this route, be sure to get a fine steel brush, since this media likes to get in the head of your screws

    thank you! I just used my tumbler for the first time and was digging walnut pieces out of the screwheads with a toothpick! Was not going to tumble screws anymore, thanks for the tip! Off to the hardware store!

    #12 10 years ago

    Walnut hull media cuts / cleans better and give a nice shine.
    Ground corn cob media polishes better ( better shine ).

    You can find cheap media at most pet stores and some walmarts. Walnut media is packaged under "Lizard litter" or similar and is usually marked on the bags. FLITZ is an excellent polish and some car waxes do a good job. New Finish car wax or scratch away added to media works well.

    Tumblers tend to clean the exterior of parts while vibratory cleaners do the inside and outside from tumbling action and media vibrating inside the parts.

    Media comes in coarse and fine ground sizes / diameters so shop around before you drag home a 50 lb sack.

    #13 10 years ago
    Quoted from loren3233:

    How much Flitz do you put in an average size tumbler? Couple drops?

    Quoted from terryb:

    Give it a good squirt all the way around on each load.

    #14 10 years ago
    Quoted from Triumvirat73:

    Does anyone happen to know where to get a good tumbler in Canada?
    Sorry for the hijack, this thread just reminded me that I'd like to get one.

    I bought mine at Wholesale Sports. 925 Notre Dame Drive in Kelowna...

    Luke

    #15 10 years ago
    Quoted from lukerp:

    I bought mine at Wholesale Sports. 925 Notre Dame Drive in Kelowna...
    Luke

    Woah!! Thanks man!!

    I wish you could have suggested somewhere a little closer though...

    #16 10 years ago

    Thanks Terry....sorry I wasn't paying attention to detail.

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