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Posted in response to last step of tumbling? from T kurras on March 26, 2011 at 07:41:51:

Re: last step of tumbling?

T, The final polish starts with the first run. What I mean by that is if you prepare your stones properly right from the start your finished product will amaze you. I always grind my stones down to remove most if not all surface imperfections. This is key to having gems when the whole process is finished. I honestly believe by doing this you will have greater finished weight. Sounds crazy I know, but if you continue to tumble to remove material unwanted you are affecting the entire surface area while grinding specific spots down only affects those areas. When I prepolish I use 1000 grit and then the final polish I use cerium oxide with 1 tablespoon of vinegar and enough water to cover the contents in the mix. As for the solid volume of material I use 1/3 part plastic pellets and 2/3 part rocks. I am usually only polishing agates and jaspers. For other types of materials that are softer there are other polishes that would work best. Check online for websites specifically for tumbling, they are out there. But always come back here and let us all know how it is going. We are all constantly learning. One last thing, like Bob had mentioned keep the batch all the same hardness.

From Ward - March 26, 2011 at 22:13:46
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