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......
bigfoot: Finally getting up to speed, I hope!
Dec 14, 2014 19:01:41 GMT -5
1dave: Hi bigfoot, good to see you here! Show these good folks your horse head carvings!
Dec 14, 2014 21:25:33 GMT -5
Fossilman: Hurt my leg the other day on a roof,but still going to cut rocks today...Thumbs up
Dec 15, 2014 12:38:26 GMT -5
captbob: We seem to be missing a thread ...
Dec 15, 2014 23:42:42 GMT -5
rockpickerforever: I iz returned. Wascally wock hunt successful! A few fossils from OW; a little of everything, and a lot of palm bog agate from Indian Pass. 100+ lb boulder of yellow agate, sounded like glass when I rolled it up the hill, lol. Pics coming soon...
Dec 16, 2014 5:05:11 GMT -5
Fossilman: Jean SCORES!!!!! Cool beans and a thumbs up..............
Dec 16, 2014 11:07:11 GMT -5
Fossilman: Well rocks yesterday,woodworking today.Have a great day my friends!!
Dec 16, 2014 13:40:30 GMT -5
drocknut: Sorry you hurt your leg Fossilman. Welcome back you wrascally wock hunter. Looking forward to pics. Glad you had a successful hunt.
Dec 16, 2014 14:52:06 GMT -5
rockpickerforever: Thanks, Diane. If the weather cooperates, will get picks tomorrow. Mike, what did you hurt your leg fur? Thought you knew better than that! Hope it doesn't keep you down, and gets better soon.
Dec 16, 2014 16:06:31 GMT -5
Fossilman: No worries,it's getting better,will be doing the jig,soon....LOL
Dec 16, 2014 19:27:37 GMT -5
drocknut: Doing the jig is probably what hurt it in the first place. .lol
Dec 16, 2014 23:26:16 GMT -5
Fossilman: Falling off the ladder working on the church steeple did that-LOL............Caught myself before I hit the bottom of the ladder...Rolling eyes..
Dec 17, 2014 0:39:26 GMT -5
drocknut: Glad it wasn't worse
Dec 17, 2014 21:22:15 GMT -5
mtmadman: hey hey every body im baaaaaach
Dec 19, 2014 19:10:01 GMT -5
Fossilman: Oh oh Bob is back.....Where you at now buddy? Close to Montana are ya'.....?
Dec 19, 2014 21:53:43 GMT -5
drocknut: Welcome back
Dec 19, 2014 23:40:33 GMT -5
catmandewe: Good to see ya Bob!
Dec 20, 2014 11:47:11 GMT -5