Electric Tumblers International Distributor
Electric Tumblers International Distributor
Electric Tumblers International Distributor
tumbler and polisher parts and upgrades kilns at paragonkilns.co.uk or making jewellery at kitiki.co.uk
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Kitiki Beach Studio Tumbler Kit For Jewellery, Silver, Art Clay, Metals, and PMC Kitiki Evans Professional Tumbler For Jewellery, Silver, Art Clay, Metals, and PMC Kitiki Beach Industrial Tumbler Kit For Jewellery, Silver, Art Clay, Metals, and PMC Kitiki Magnetic Polisher Stainless-Steel Pins
UK To EU Plug Adapter
Ceramic Block
Ceramic Cloth
Ceramic Shapes
Kitiki Cleaner
Ceramic-Fibre Cloth
Bullseye Kiln Paper
CR1 Professional Motor Base
CR2 Professional Motor Base
CR5 Professional Motor Base
Large Rubber Drum 2000gm Open
Digital Pyrometer
Cherry Heaven Digital Alarm-Timer
CR5 Engineering Motor Base
CR5 Engineering Motor Base And Drum
Dremel Engraver
Dremel Engraver In Use
EU Plug
Fire Extinguisher
File Set
File Set
Glare-Resistant Glasses
Abrasive Grits
Mini Motor Base
Heat-Resistant Gloves
Junior Motor Base
Cutters
Flush Cutters
Flat-Nose Pliers
Pointed-Nose Pliers
Bent-Nose Pliers
Round-Nose Pliers
Knife Set
Knife Set
Small Plastic Drum 700gm Closed
Long Plastic Drum 2360gm Closed
Medium Rubber Drum 950gm Closed
Medium Rubber Drum 950gm Open
Mini-Drill
Digital Multimeter
Magnetic Polisher
Magnetic Polisher
Magnetic Polisher
Magnetic Polisher
3M HEPA Dust Mask
Mains Tester Screwdriver
Plastic Pellets
Magnetic Polisher Pins
Magnetic Polisher Pins
Protective Safety Glasses
Potter & Brumfield Relay
Ring Guage
Small Plastic Drum 700gm Closed
Scriber
Shot: Balls And Planetoids
Shot: Pins And Rods
Soldering Iron
Paragon SC2 Shelf Kit
Small Plastic Drum 700gm Closed
Small Rubber Drum 510gm Closed
Stainless Steel Containers
Studio Motor Base
Studio Motor Base
Industrial
SilverEtch By Larissa Johnson
SilverEtch By Larissa Johnson
South-West Of England
Starter With One Drum
Mini With One Drum
Studio With One Drum
Junior With One Drum
Industrial With One Drum
Professional With Two Drums
Triblets
Ultrasonic Cleaner Kit 1
Ultrasonic Cleaner Kit 1
Ultrasonic Cleaner Kit 1
Ultrasonic Cleaner Example
Cherry Heaven USB Loudspeakers
UK Plug
Vermiculite
Medium Rubber Drum With Vanes Open
Walnut Shells
Zinc Oxide Polish

Electric Tumblers And Polishers For Silver, Coins, Glass, Jewellery, Metal Clays, Metals, Minerals, Art Clay, PMC, Rocks, And Stones.

The tumblers are available as complete ready-to-go kits or separate parts. To learn more about the kits, use the links below the menu bar near the top of the page.

If you're comparing prices for tumblers, don't mistake the cost of the motor base on its own for the cost of a whole kit. And check that you're looking at the correct size drum, the amount and quality of shot, three graded grits and polish, UK VAT, and UK mainland delivery.


No one can advise you on the tumbling time: it depends on the degree of roughness you start with and the degree of polish you want to achieve. Some silver clay jewellery looks great after twenty minutes, whereas some need two hours. Some of the old glass we found on Swanage beach only needed an hour, whereas some newly-fractured glass or stones needed four days. So, it's very important to experiment and make a few reminder-notes.

As with many things things, there's a trade-off between easy and time-efficient working, and your budget. Although the cheapest tumbler works perfectly well for a few pieces, you might soon want to try different materials and might need a bigger tumbler or use several drums at the same time.

THE CR1 TUMBLER MOTOR BASE
Kitiki Kimber Allen CR-1 Tumbler Motor Base Kitiki Kimber Allen 510gm  Small Rubber Drum Kitiki Kimber Allen 950gm  Medium Rubber Drum Kitiki Kimber Allen 1000gm Medium Pro Rubber Drum

The Kimber Allen CR1 Tumbler

The Kitiki CR-1 is a heavy-duty motor base with a powerful 40W motor, a nylon reinforced toothed drive belt, and bronze roller bearings. It's not available as part of a kit, so you'll need to add a 950cc or 1000cc pro rubber drum, and 500gm of shot and cleaner, or a three-grit pack. Or you can use two 510gm rubber drums. It's more powerful and more robust than the Professional model.

THE CR5 TUMBLER MOTOR BASE
Kitiki Kimber Allen CR-5 Tumbler Motor Base Kitiki Kimber Allen 510gm Small Rubber Drum Kitiki Kimber Allen 950gm Medium Rubber Drum Kitiki Kimber Allen 1000gm Medium Pro Rubber Drum

The Kimber Allen CR5 Tumbler

The Kitiki CR-5 is a double-length heavy-duty motor base with a powerful 40W motor, a nylon reinforced toothed drive belt, and bronze roller bearings. It's available as part of the Engineering Kit. If you buy it separately, you'll need to add two 950cc or 1000cc pro rubber drums, 1000gm of shot and cleaner, or two grit packs. As it's longer than the other tumblers, you can use one 950cc drum and two 510cc rubber drums, or one 1000cc pro rubber drum and two 510cc rubber drums, or three 510cc rubber drums.

BARRELS
Kitiki Beach Lapidary 700gm  Small Plastic Drum Kitiki Kimber Allen 510gm  Small Rubber Drum Kitiki Kimber Allen 950gm  Medium Rubber Drum Kitiki Kimber Allen 1000gm Medium Pro Rubber Drum

Rotary Tumbler Barrels And Drums.

Tumblers use a rotating drum, or barrel, which contains mixed shot and cleaner or graded grits and polish. The kits include drums which are the right size for the motor base.

It's generally assumed that a 3.0lb drum can hold 3.0lbs of stones, but what kind of stones? Especially as, for most tumbling, the drum should only be about 40% full. Similarly, a 510cc drum holds 510gms of something: but what? 510gms of glass pieces will weigh less than heavy beach pebbles.

The usual way to measure any container's capacity is by its volume, in cubic centimetres or litres. However, since 1cc of pure water weighs 1gm, the weight of water could be used instead: weigh the drum, fill it with water, and measure the change.


Kitiki Beach Lapidary 700gm Plastic Drum 700cc Plastic Drum.

Kitiki Beach Lapidary 1150gm Plastic Drum 1150cc Plastic Drum.

Kitiki Kimber Allen 510gm Rubber Drum 510cc Rubber Drum.

Kitiki Kimber Allen 950gm Rubber Drum 950cc Rubber Drum.

Kitiki Kimber Allen 1000gm Rubber Drum With Internal Vanes 1000cc Rubber Drum With Internal Vanes.

Kitiki Beach Lapidary 2000gm Rubber Drum With Internal Vanes 2000cc Rubber Drum With Internal Vanes.

Kitiki Kimber Allen 2360gm Plastic Drum 2360gcc Plastic Drum.


We measured drums from several manufacturers on various websites and put the catalogue and actual sizes in the following table. It's the actual capacity that's relevant. I've highlighted the ones that fit the motor bases or are in the kits.


drum catalogue capacity in lbs catalogue capacity in cc actual capacity in cc length in mm diameter in mm
plastic 1.5 500 480 72 113
rubber 1.5 510 510 75 113
rubber 1.5 700 510 75 113
plastic 2.0 700 700 92 113
plastic 2.0 900 700 92 113
plastic 3.0 1400 1150 147 113
rubber 3.0 950 950 135 113
rubber 3.0 1400 950 135 113
rubber with vanes 3.0 1400 1000 130 130
rubber with vanes 5.0 2270 2000 127 176
plastic 6.0 2800 2360 285 113

The complete kits are sold with a plastic drum or a rubber drum. Although the plastic ones are cheaper, rubber is a better choice. Here's why:


Plastic drums are an economy option. Unfortunately, they're fiddlesome to open and close, noisy in use, and sometimes leak. And, if the end caps aren't pushed on all the way, the drum doesn't turn properly and can fall off the rollers.

Plastic drum lids need to stand in hot water to make them easier to push on. When they are on, the whole drum needs to be squeezed to expel as much air as possible because, during prolonged tumbling, the air warms up and expands and can cause the drum to leak.

To free the lids. the whole drum has to stand in hot water. Prising them off is a good way to break your nails and there's a slight risk that, as you pull the lid off, you'll spill your work, shot or grit, and soapy water.

Plastic drums are noisy, if you have to work in the same room: especially as rough glass and stones might need to tumble for several days.


Rubber drums are better, quieter, don't leak, and are simpler to fill and empty than plastic drums.. They're simpler to fill and empty than plastic drums as they use a different lid mechanism: at one end there's an inner metal lid, a rubber sealing ring, an outer metal lid, and a retaining wing-nut.

Professional rubber drums have internal vanes which, as the drum rotates, scoop up the shot and your pieces, increasing the tumbling action and reducing the tumbling time. They're better, quieter, and simpler to fill and empty than plastic drums. They should be about 60% to 75% full to maximise the tumbling action.


If you want to do shot-tumbling and grit-tumbling, you should use two barrels: marked so that you don't mixed them up. One stray grit particle caught in the drum will scratch your shot-tumbled work: the scratches are quite hard to remove.

Ideally, and budget constraints aside, it's much better to use four smaller drums for the three grit grades and the polish, and one larger drum one for the shot: marked so you don't mix them up. It makes cleaning and storing easier, especially as the three grits look similar and the polish must be kept grit-free. If you choose to use the same drum, cleaning it out carefully between each phase is vital, as one stray grit particle caught in the drum will scratch your work during the polishing phase, and the scratches are quite hard to remove.

SHOT BALLS, PLANETOIDS, PINS, AND RODS
Kitiki Rotary Tumbler Stainless-Steel Balls And Planetoids Kitiki Rotary Tumbler Stainless-Steel Pins And Rods

Rotary Tumbler Rust-Resistant Stainless-Steel Shot: Balls, Planetoids, Pins, and Rods.

Before reading about shot, it's a buyer-beware product. Our shot is, as far as I know, the best: it's a mix of nine different sizes of pins and balls, is made for us from high-quality, slightly-magnetic, rust-resistant, stainless steel. It's worth asking yourself why a well-known craft retailer is selling similar-looking shot at nearly three times the price.

Using high-quality shot is vital. Ours is made for us, from slightly-magnetic, rust-resistant, stainless steel. It has a good mix of balls, planetoids, pins, and rods to suit every contour: not just one-size balls with a few planetoids.
Anything described elsewhere as a getting-started pack will almost certainly have regular-steel shapes with no fine balls or pins. And regular-steel shot will soon corrode, make a mess, and spoil your work, so you'd need to buy an appropriate pack sooner rather than later.


Shot is the generic name for the small metal shapes used to polish and burnish. Ours is made of rust-resistant stainless steel, not plain steel, as a mix of differenty-sized balls, planetoids, pins, and rods.

As the drum rotates, the shot repeatedly falls onto the material to be polished and the collective tiny impacts gradually harden, polish, and burnish the surface.

It's in 250gm bags: either mixed balls and planetoids or mixed pins and rods. Kits include the correct amount for the size of the drum: 500gms, 1000gms, or 2000gms.

If your work pieces have a lot of fine detail work, try more pins. However, once you've mixed them you won't be able to un-mix them easily, so you might want to use two drums.

Your work and the shot are immersed in water. However, as water is a poor cleaner, a small amount of special detergent is usually added. It's called barelling compound, gallay compound, drum cleaner, or just tumbler cleaner: it's only for shot, not grits.


Most of the plain steel and stainless steel shot in the UK, and probably the EU, came from several suppliers in India. It used to be adequately made but, over the years, the quality, shapes, and mix of balls, planetoids, pins, and rods, deteriorated, especially as the raw-metal price increased. It's not as corrosion resistant as it was, probably because it's a lower grade steel.

Our shot is a tested and reliable mix of shapes designed to deal with the diverse range of contours on jewellery. It's made in the same factory that makes our magnetic polishers, pliers, cutters, and other tools. Also, as it's slightly magnetic, it's easier to pick up if you spill it.

Although it's rust-resistant steel, don't leave it lying around wet: either leave it immersed in the tumbler mix of water and cleaner, or rinse it and dry it carefully. No steel-based products are rust-proof as anyone who's found a bike in a canal will have seen.

If you need to replace the shot, don't economise and buy plain or mixed steel: unless you're meticulous about cleaning and drying it every time, it'll soon rust, make a mess, and ruin your work.

BARRELS
Kitiki 700cc Plastic Drum Kitiki 510cc Rubber Drum Kitiki 950cc Rubber Drum Kitiki Pro 1000cc Rubber Drum

Rotary Tumbler Barrels And Drums.

Tumblers use a rotating drum, or barrel, which contains mixed shot and cleaner or graded grits and polish. The kits include drums which are the right size for the tumbler motor base.

It's generally assumed that a 3.0lb drum can hold 3.0lbs of stones, but what kind of stones? Especially as, for most tumbling, the drum should only be about 40% full. Similarly, a 510gm drum holds 510gms of something: but what? There's plainly a difference between 510gms of glass pieces and 510gms of heavy pebbles.

The usual way to measure any container's capacity is by its volume, in cubic centimetres or litres. However, since 1cc of pure water weighs 1gm, the weight of water could be used instead: weigh the drum, fill it with water, and measure the change.


Plastic drums are an economy option. Unfortunately, they're fiddlesome to open and close, noisy in use, and sometimes leak. And, if the end caps aren't pushed on all the way, the drum won't turn properly and can fall off the rollers.

Plastic drum lids need to stand in hot water to make them easier to push on. When they are on, the whole drum needs to be squeezed to expel as much air as possible because, during prolonged tumbling, the air warms up and expands and can cause the drum to leak.

To free the lids. the whole drum has to stand in hot water. Prising them off is a good way to break your nails and there's a slight risk that, as you pull the lid off, you'll spill your work, shot or grit, and soapy water.

Plastic drums are noisy, if you have to work in the same room: especially as rough glass and stones might need to tumble for several days.


Rubber drums are better, quieter, don't leak, and are simpler to fill and empty than plastic drums. They use a different lid mechanism: at one end there's an inner metal lid, a rubber sealing ring, an outer metal lid, and a retaining wing-nut.

Professional rubber drums have internal vanes which, as the drum rotates, scoop up the shot and your pieces, increasing the tumbling action and reducing the tumbling time. They should be about 60% to 75% full to maximise the tumbling action.

Unfortunately, a long rubber drum would be slightly flexible and, as it warms up, twists slightly and slips on the rollers. Which is why the Engineering kit includes a rigid plastic drum.


If you want to do shot-tumbling and grit-tumbling, use two barrels: marked so that you don't mix them up. One stray grit particle caught in the shot-drum will scratch your work: and the scratches are quite hard to remove.

Ideally, and budget constraints aside, use four drums for the three grit grades and the polish: marked so that you don't mix them up. Four drums make cleaning and storing easier, especially as the three grits look similar and the polish must be kept grit-free. It also makes more sense to use the larger Studio or Professional tumbler so that you can use two smaller drums, with different abrasives, at the same time.

MAGNETIC POLISHER PINS

Magnetic Polisher Stainless Steel Pins.

Kitiki Magnetic Polisher Stainless-Steel Pins

Most of the plain steel and stainless steel pins in the UK, and probably the EU, came from several suppliers in India. They used to be adequately made but, over the years, the quality, cuts, and mix of sizes deteriorated, especially as the raw-metal price increased. In some cases they were just plain steel, not stainless, or a mix. Either way, they soon corroded.

Our pins are made for us: from expensive stain-resistant magnetic-steel wire. Cutting thin wire into 5mm lengths needs a precision guillotine with a carefully controlled feed mechanism or the cut will shear leaving a point that will scratch rather than polish your work. The size was chosen, after considerable experiment, to best polish the diverse range of contours on jewellery. They're made in the same factory that makes our pliers, cutters, magnetic polishers, and other tools.

Initially, the stainless steel pins will have straight-cut ends, so it's a good idea to run the polisher with some scrap metal for an hour to begin to round them off slightly. Then, either keep them in the water or take them out and dry them. Some people lift the pot off to keep the pins away from the magnet when not using it.

Although it's rust-resistant steel, don't leave it lying around wet: either leave it immersed in the tumbler mix of water and cleaner, or rinse it and dry it carefully.

If you need to replace the pins, don't economise and buy plain or mixed steel: unless you're meticulous about cleaning and drying it every time, it'll soon rust, make a mess, and ruin your work.

VIDEO: STAINLESS STEEL

A Promotional Video For Stainless Steel.

Cherry Heaven TV provides on-line radio and television programmes using the Cherry Heaven Player. To play, pause, or stop the player, or adjust the volume, click the controls or, whilst it's playing, drag the time-line slider to a new position.

There are over 60 different types of stainless steel, better called stain-resistant steel, It's a versatile, durable, steel alloy, used in familiar domestic and industrial products. Here's a promotional video:


00:00  00:00
DRUM AND SHOT CLEANER AND CORROSION INHIBITOR
Kitiki BarrelBrite Cleaning Compound

Rotary Tumbler Barreling Compound.

Cleaner, sometimes called barrelling compound, barrel brite, or gallay compound, is a special mix of detergents and corrosion inhibitors used to keep the barrel, shot, and your work clean. It's not regular washing-machine powder. It's not just a general detergent.


The cleaner comes in a 225cc white plastic screw-top pot for convenience and safety: not a plastic bag, and not a pot that can't be closed properly once the seal has been broken.

Although it's filled to the brim during packing, powders settle and it may not look quite full when you open it. It's plainly much easier to fill a pot with a fixed volume than to measure out a fixed weight every time. Larger 1000cc pots are in the on-line shop.

GRITS
Kitiki Rotary Tumbler Abrasives, Grits, And Polish

Rotary Tumbler Abrasives, Grits, And Polish.

Grit is the generic name for the abrasive particles used to grind and polish. Generally, it's graded silicon carbide: an angular, hard, sharp, material which fractures into smaller angular particles, making it an effective abrasive.

As the drum rotates, the grit particles repeatedly fall onto the material to be polished and the collective tiny scratches and impacts gradually polish the surface. However, unlike shot, it does need replacing eventually.


A grit pack comprises 400gms of 80 grit, 400gms of 220 grit, and 340gms of 400 grit, 200 gms of zinc oxide polish, and one 250gm pack of plastic pellets to distribute the polish.

Using three grades of grit is vital. With two, coarse and fine, polishing would take longer and be less effective. The grits and polish come in plastic screw-top pots: not plastic bags, and not pots that can't be closed tight once the seal has been broken.
The kit includes plastic pellets to distribute the final polish. Without these, the polish would stick to the sides of the drum or just stay in lumps. Cerium oxide is not the same as zinc oxide.
Anything described as a getting-started pack will almost certainly only have small amounts of two grits and polish, and no pellets. You'll need to buy an appropriate pack sooner rather than later.


Grit sizes are confusing, for example: 400 grit particles are not twice the size or half the size of 200 grit particles. 80 grit is classed as medium, 220 as fine, and 400 as very fine. However, most users refer to them as coarse, medium, and fine, and you'll soon learn which grits to use, and for how long, for different materials, shapes, and finishes.

Grit should be handled and stored carefully to prevent contamination from stray larger particles that will scratch. Keep the tubs sealed until you need to use them. In use, transfer a small amount into a working container, to minimize the risk of contaminating the whole tub. And wash the drums thoroughly before and after use.

When you've finished, empty the grit into a cloth-lined sieve, rinse it thoroughly, and spread it on some cloth to dry. Be careful not to flush away any grit as it may collect in the basin trap.


Ideally, and budget constraints aside, you should use four drums for the three grit grades and the polish: marked so that you don't mixed them up. If you choose to use the same drum, cleaning it out carefully between each phase is vital, as one stray grit particle caught in the drum will scratch your work during the next phase, and the scratches are hard to remove.

ZINC OXIDE POLISH AND PLASTIC PELLETS
Kitiki Rotary Tumbler Polish Kitiki Rotary Tumbler Pellets

Zinc Oxide Polish And Plastic Pellets.

The final phase for polishing glass, rocks, and stones uses zinc oxide powder, mixed with water to produce a thick creamy polish, and small plastic pellets. The powder isn't water soluble so the individual particles keep their integrity.

The pellets disperse the polish and stop it sticking to the inside of the drum or forming one lump. They're usually made from nylon or recycled polypropylene. The bag in the kits contains about 250gms but you won't need to use it all in one go.

Over time, the pellets break down into smaller pieces, although it won't matter much until they look like grains of sugar. However, by then, the zinc oxide, and the grits, will probably have lost most of their abrasiveness.

Some polishes use cerium oxide. Cerium belongs to the group of elements known as the rare earth elements. To produce the polishing powder, about 80% of cerium oxide and 20% of other rare earths are used, resulting in a pink-ish powder. Unfortunately, it's more expensive and doesn't work any better unless the stones are very hard.


Polishing is the final step in the process: it won't remove working marks or grit scratches left from previous phases. Although it can produce a highly-polished surface, some glass artists prefer the slighty matte surface that the grits produce.


The screw-top pot in the kits contains about 200gms. If you see grits and polish sold as a getting-started pack, you'll probably get two small pots of grit, not three, a small pot of polish, and no plastic pellets. It won't be enough, and you'll have to buy more once you've experimented.

OTHER MEDIA
Kitiki Rotary Tumbler Ceramic Shapes Kitiki Rotary Tumbler Walnut Shells

Ceramic Shapes And Walnut Shells.

Some processes, such as de-burring metals, work better with different media. The two most popular are ceramic shapes and broken wallnut shells, both of which are in the on-line shop.

I can't recommend one or the other so, as they're not expensive, you'll need to experiment. However, generally, ceramic shapes are used with harder metals and walnut shells with softer metals.

They can also be mixed with grits for polishing glass, rocks, and stones, but once you've mixed them you won't be able to un-mix them without a sieve.


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