Jewelry Tumbling Instructions
1 to 2 pounds of stainless steel shot mix required (per 3 lb barrel)
Note: Before first use, run barrel with the stainless steel shot mix and 2 drops of soap for 15-20 minutes to clean the inside of the barrel.
- Open the Barrel: Remove nut and washer, press down on bolt with thumb while lifting up on outside of outer lid with fingers. If outer lid is difficult to remove, insert washer between edge of outer lid and barrel, twist to loosen. After outer lid has been removed, lift inner lid out by center bolt.
- Add Tumbling Media: Put 1 to 2 lbs. stainless steel shot mix in barrel.
- Add Jewelry: Add pieces of jewelry to barrel. Add enough water to just cover top of jewelry and shot mix (barrel should not weigh more than 4 lbs. full). Add a few drops of ShineBrite* (see instructions on bottle).
- Close the Barrel: Wipe the mating surfaces of the barrel and inner lid clean with a damp cloth. Press inner lid into barrel until it rests on shoulder. Press outer lid firmly down onto the barrel. Install washer and tighten nut.
Knurled nut only needs to be snug. Do not use tools to tighten. Over tightening of the nut can cause the inner lid to distort and leak.
*What Kind of Cleanser/Soap?
We highly recommend ShineBrite, because we have used it regularly for over 30 years, and have never had problems with it. Lortone’s original instructions say: Add a drop or two of mild dish washing soap or hand soap. If using burnishing soap, make sure to use mixture diluted to manufacturer’s instructions. Do not add more than 2 drops of soap, and do not use detergents, soaps containing anti-bacterial additives, or any other harsh chemicals, as damage to barrel and leakage may occur.LORTONE Rotary Tumbler Instructions and Parts List (PDF)
To this we’d like to add: The #1 problem that people have reported with their tumblers, is damage to the inside of the barrel, from using soap that contains additives that attack the rubber. For decades, people have recommended a very basic unscented Dawn, but that has become harder to find, as scents and antibacterial options become more popular. Beware of lemon scented soaps: it may be natural, but citrus attacks rubber and will leave the inside of the barrel sticky. Simple Green is also a popular recommendation on jeweler's forums, but we haven’t tried it.
See Related Products links (below) for similar items and additional jewelry-making supplies that are often used with this item.