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Rock tumblers for parts cleaning question

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Groucho, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. 73RR
    Joined: Jan 29, 2007
    Posts: 6,536

    73RR
    Member

    Thank you!
    Technically they are either CONCRETE mixers or MORTAR mixers......just one of those 'little' things that bug the crap outta me.

    I use black diamond in my blast cabinet and expect it would do a good job, albeit at a slower pace.
    Nooks and crannies? Don't expect too much on those. Due to the tumbling action I think the pockets won't see any action.
     
  2. thank you-thank you-thank you:d;)
     
  3. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547

    stimpy

    dependig on the materials I use everything from corn cob chunks , to ground walnut shells to aluminum oxide powder ( for super rusty metals ) if its steel or iron its AO, looks like it was sand blasted , for the softer metals like brass its walnut shells and then corncob for a polish . also for the brass some Bar keeps best freind ( calcium carbonate) straight cleans and polishes real nice .
     
  4. The green or white pieces? Also, wet or dry? If wet, what?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 7, 2014
  5. Man you just had to do it ! :)
    Mortar mixer
     

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  6. 302aod
    Joined: Dec 19, 2011
    Posts: 275

    302aod
    Member
    from Pelham,Tn.

    I used the green diamond shaped media dry. The bolts were oily and greasy. They came out dry dull and clean.
     
  7. 302aod
    Joined: Dec 19, 2011
    Posts: 275

    302aod
    Member
    from Pelham,Tn.

    I also put some small interior parts in and it cleaned them, but didn't take all the paint off.
     
  8. 302aod
    Joined: Dec 19, 2011
    Posts: 275

    302aod
    Member
    from Pelham,Tn.

    I went out to the shop and got the container that the "Green rust cutting media abrasive resin" Comes in a five lb.bucket. Central Pneumatic is the brand name. I don't remember the price, but it was the cheapest I could find after a little looking. I haven't used the walnut shells yet. It comes from Harber freight in a 25lb box. I've used the green media at least 10 times and it is still sharp.
     
  9. I just loaded a batch of that a few minutes ago with soapy water, (a recommended lubricant).
     
  10. Also, how LONG do you tumble your pieces on an average (hours, days)?
     
  11. Mine is bowling alley and bowling center. A bowling center is where you find several bowling alleys. :cool:
     
  12. Just depends on your abrasive and how dirty they are. Run it for several hours and check in on them.
     
  13. 302aod
    Joined: Dec 19, 2011
    Posts: 275

    302aod
    Member
    from Pelham,Tn.

    Mine ran for 24 hours.
     
  14. modeltford
    Joined: Oct 27, 2006
    Posts: 65

    modeltford
    Member

    I have the vibrating typy rock "tumbler" - also use the HF green diamond media - didn't work worth a crap.
     
  15. A coffee can full of roofing nails in a 2 gallon tumbler. I've also used a paint shaker, works fast. Some sandblasting sand will make 'em shiny as well.
     
  16. silversink
    Joined: May 3, 2008
    Posts: 917

    silversink
    Member

    If that bug's you, I can tell you cement comes in bags and concrete is what comes out of a cement mixer
     
  17. Actually no. Cement is one of 3 parts that make concrete. Cement+sand+rock=concrete. :D
     
  18. Agree. Not worth a crap


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  19. flatheadpete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2003
    Posts: 10,088

    flatheadpete
    Member
    from Burton, MI

    I worked with Dan Webb a few years back and he had a big floor mount tumbler. I don't recall what type of media was used but it used a solvent to help clean and a solid to de-rust, resurface, etc. I used it personally for my copper stacks on my flathead. They turned out kind of a 'needs to be cleaned engine turned' finish. It was big enough to do axle bells, valve covers and other larger pieces.
     
  20. Ebbsspeed
    Joined: Nov 11, 2005
    Posts: 5,401

    Ebbsspeed
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Wouldn't concrete come out of a concrete mixer?
     
  21. Regardless it is the tumble and drop action of the drum that cleans the parts.

    Mortar needs to be cut and chopped, although it contains the very same cement as concrete and that cement certainly does comes out of sacks for professionals and bags for DIYers. Putting parts in a mortar mixer will fuck some shit up.

    Now we see why he didnt want a hijack to cement mixers even if it could possibly stay on the tumble and drop action with media and parts for cleaning:)
     
  22. boutlaw
    Joined: Apr 30, 2010
    Posts: 1,228

    boutlaw
    Member

    My vote is with modeltford and crminal, the HF tumbler with green pyramids didnt work that great, plus the machine got fairly hot running for so long. Results were just ok..thanks for starting the thread united..
     
  23. After reading this thread, I can really see getting a small capacity portable (cement) mixer that has a plastic drum.


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  24. So, here's what we got. $15 media (w/25% coupon) from HF and some water with dish washing soap over night (maybe 16 hrs). I'll try during the day next time to see if I coulda saved some wear of the machine by checking sooner. I'm happy! Thoughts?
     

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  25. oldolds
    Joined: Oct 18, 2010
    Posts: 3,106

    oldolds
    Member

    I think those chunks are too big to clean that bolt. Smaller media would have gotten in the corners more. A wire wheel would have done a faster job, but you have to do each one. The tumbler will do a bunch of bolts and you can do something else.
     
  26. Thoughts- the bolts pictured isn't ready to use yet.
    I also think the media is too big for the fine detail.

    I think I'd try a lacquer thinner soak first, and some sand in the tumbler.
     
  27. stimpy
    Joined: Apr 16, 2006
    Posts: 3,547

    stimpy

    I find the triangle abrasive works better for a vibrator cleaner than a tumbler as in a vibratory it has a eraser on paper like action which has longer contact surface time vs a cascading action . for a cascade I would use a smaller abrasive like glassbead and water slurry
     
  28. I agree on the size, but was pretty surprised. Actually the threads are pretty clean given the size of the media. It's all just an experiment right now

    The bolts are ready to use for this particular project (customer's wishes), and I was just showing some preview progress. Other projects will see the bolts in the tumbler for longer periods of time. I have a speedo bullet and M/C pushrod/clevis in there now for another experiment. I will post pics later. I'd like to find some "shot" that I've seen in other machines. Looks a lot like a grain if rice. But, so far, I'm not hating the finish of thre green HF stuff.
     
  29. oldolds
    Joined: Oct 18, 2010
    Posts: 3,106

    oldolds
    Member

    Your word "shot" struck a bell. Try shotgun reloading shot. There is steel, brass, and maybe even lead. Various sizeing too.
     
  30. You guys don't like the variable speed orbital sander with sand or cheap carb cleaner method I described earlier? It works great.
     

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