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Tumblers and Polishing Jewelry

Nothing can quite compare to fresh-out-of-the-tumbler silver jewelry.  It's sparkle is beyond comparison.

Urban Maille has an excellent article on their site about tumble polishing:

http://urbanmaille.com/chainworks/polishing.asp

Tumblers

The 3 lbs. rotary Chicago tumbler from Harbor Freight smells a little funky (but it's nothing that a good washing with baking soda won't take out), but is a good price for most of your beginning tumbling needs.

The Lortone Tumbler - Model 3A is the choice for heavy duty rotary tumbling of chain and PMC and is a available from many sources, including Connie Fox.

Vibratory tumblers work quicker, but are much more expensive. 
I use the Gy-Rok Vibratory Tumbler - Model B.  It is available from Monsterslayer.

Stainless Steel Shot

Any kind of stainless steel shot will work for polishing chain maille.  I use round stainless steel shot, while others use mixed stainless steel shot.  When you order mixed shot, be warned that if it has "pins", you might end up picking them out of some chain weaves after polishing.

You can order stainless steel shot from Monsterslayer, Rio Grande, or pick it up at your local rock shop.

Polishing Compounds and Burnishing Fluids

For polishing silver jewelry you really don't need any special burnishing fluids or polishing compounds.  Plain old original (blue) Dawn or Sunlight dish soap will do the job just fine.

But, in some cases I prefer to use Sunsheen burnishing fluid (for silver and gold) from Rio Grande and red rouge charged walnut shells.

     


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