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 14:59:06 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......
edmohs: maybe I should have said hot flesh? ---chili pepper!
Nov 25, 2015 2:47:03 GMT -5
Fossilman: OMG ROTFLMAO!!!!
Nov 25, 2015 4:22:18 GMT -5
micellular: AberdeenDon, why do you call yourself jakesrocks then?
Nov 25, 2015 7:59:55 GMT -5
jakesrocks: Because they're my dog Jake's rocks. He just lets me play with them.
Nov 25, 2015 9:16:48 GMT -5
captbob: Reason I asked Don ( jakesrocks! ) was all that snow ya'll got a few days ago. Wondered where you were on that snow map.
Nov 25, 2015 11:32:24 GMT -5
jakesrocks: LOL, bout an hour & a half drive north of the snow. We saw an occasional flake or two.
Nov 25, 2015 13:40:18 GMT -5
drocknut: Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Nov 26, 2015 6:03:59 GMT -5
jakesrocks: Vulture is stuffed & in the oven. But Bah Humbug. It snowed this morning & killed my turkey day spirit. Only 21 deg outside. Happy Thanksgiving to all lucky enough to be in a warmer climate. And to those of us in the frozen regions, Happy Thanksgiving.
Nov 26, 2015 6:16:55 GMT -5
jakesrocks: Suck it up & suffer through it.
Nov 26, 2015 6:17:47 GMT -5
Fossilman: 40's here,Tammy has to work-we will do Thanksgiving at daughters on Saturday...Chicken wings and sauce for me today-Yeeeeee Hawwww.....
Nov 26, 2015 6:51:09 GMT -5
captbob: House wide open, wearing shorts, hanging outside x-mas lights as turkey cooks - 79° Not many rocks here in Florida, but it does have its benefits.
Nov 26, 2015 6:56:54 GMT -5
Fossilman: Lots of sharks teeth in Florida though.....Thumbs up
Nov 26, 2015 9:11:01 GMT -5