Click on the photo and you'll see a short video clip. I built this little dandy after I spent some time in a working opal mine in Lightning ridge. This works well for separating nobbies from kaolinite clay, but it's not so slick for general rock tumbling.
Last Edit: Oct 30, 2009 19:59:06 GMT -5 by julietom
Here is the big tire tumble revision 2 - I cut chamfered disks out of plywood, and used a threaded rod with wing-nuts to tighten the chamfered edges into the bead of the tire rim. Note the V8 soda pop can at the end of the video, to get a sense of the size of things. This is a special large tire that is typical of the front tires of a large cement mixer truck.
I had to wrap a cross-section of inner-tube to each end of the 5 gal bucket, to get it to turn on the hex shaped driver spindles. This was a forgettable effort, with the rubber bands not holding up for more than several hours. dismal failure.....
Oh, I have a lot of rocks laying around to be sure! With the monster tire tumbler, I mostly just ran big rough cobbles in #10 grit, which cuts really fast, and skins the oxidation off rocks in a hurry!! This is expecially important with west coast jaspers, which tend to be rusty looking, and hard to read, until they have spent a nite in the tire tumbler. Ive never run anything bigger than about 20lb cobbles in it. I guess football sized or so. Mostly from there, I slab up the pretty cobbles, for cabbing, and the rest just kinda make their way to the various rock gardens around the house. I also have a 65T tumbler from diamond pacific, which can handle most rocks, but Ive only taken stones out to a satin finish in that thing. I need to get a good batch of smoothies to justify the purchase of a second 65T barrel, which is fairly pricey... I want to use a proper media to cushion the polish cycle in the 65t barrel, its too heavy to roll properly if you fill it with agates for your tumbling media, and if you dont fill it up, its too rough on the stones, and they get dinged up instead of polishing. Ive been cracking walnuts, to get a nice load of walnut shells to cushion the stones.... LOL
BTW, as has been mentioned on other posts, the tire tumbler will do a good job shaping your rocks, but you cant get the full use out of your grit before the sludge gets too milkshakey, and the stones get a bit rounded. After that the big stones would rather slide back down the well of the tire, than roll down in the desired manner. after 2 days or so, you have to muck it all out, rinse out your grit, and start over, after removing all the smooth tumbled stones, that are ready to move on to 60-90 in the next tumbler. Could you imagine storing a set of these tires, one for each phase of tumbling? Also the sealed bearings in my pillow blocks tend to get polish contaminated and wear out fairly rapidly. This is due to the slurry that seeps out of my tire during tumbling. This tumbler generates so much heat, that its like a sauna in that little soundproof room after an overnite tumble. No problems running this system in the dead of winter......
wampidy: And snotpickerforever rockpickerforever (damn, I am not sure but I think I promised to never use that name again) will back me up on that.
Jan 20, 2015 8:04:14 GMT -5
wampidy: Okay, ya'll can go back to work now.
Jan 20, 2015 8:06:15 GMT -5
wampidy: Hello, HELLO, Is anybody there? Where in the hell is everybody?
Jan 20, 2015 8:09:34 GMT -5
wampidy: Oh crap, I forgot that Q is rockin. Never mind.
Jan 20, 2015 8:11:25 GMT -5
Fossilman: Jim,you all right......LMAO!!!!
Jan 20, 2015 20:58:57 GMT -5
gemologistjohn: I know a bit about this material. I named Jessite and wrote an article on it in 2014, january issue of Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist Magazine. Very little ever came out after that. Kaily Agate was found in the same vein same mine. both my kids names
Jan 22, 2015 10:01:54 GMT -5
gemologistjohn: Kaily Agate is the correct spelling and name for this material. If I can figure out how to put pix in here I will show both Jessite and Kaily Agates
Jan 22, 2015 10:02:42 GMT -5
Shotgunner: gem'o john, you need to use a remote host for pics. Like your website, flickr or another...
Jan 22, 2015 21:49:31 GMT -5
stonesthrow: I have a couple slabs of the jessite and kaily agate
Jan 22, 2015 23:30:34 GMT -5
stonesthrow: Hi John we spoke via email some months back
Jan 22, 2015 23:31:29 GMT -5
drocknut: Had a blast at the bbq last night in Quartzsite. Great catching up with friends.
Jan 25, 2015 14:13:58 GMT -5
rockpickerforever: Back home after 9 days in Quartzsite, wanted to stay longer! Will be having a contest - guess the mileage - winner gets am MFRB of Brenda Jasper from the field trip. Will get pics and post details tomorrow. Stay tuned!
Jan 26, 2015 0:56:57 GMT -5
roxgrrl: Anyone around from Minnesota/Wisco?
Jan 26, 2015 13:41:41 GMT -5
adam: nope, Kentucky here... some day, though, maybe I'll live out west. location affects everything. sigh.
Jan 26, 2015 15:41:43 GMT -5
Fossilman: We moved from North Dakota to Oregon-I'm in rock heaven here!!!!!!!!! Thumbs up
Jan 27, 2015 12:22:51 GMT -5
europast: Lucky people live in Oregon - the rest of us just wish we did!
Jan 28, 2015 20:45:03 GMT -5
Fossilman: Montana comes so close though....
Jan 28, 2015 22:55:10 GMT -5
wampidy: Wyoming is best of all if you do not mind going back in time 200 efin years.
Jan 29, 2015 7:12:01 GMT -5
nowyo: Hell, Jim, that's the best part.
Jan 29, 2015 14:25:43 GMT -5