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......
drocknut: wampidy, you are sweet, you just try to look like a crabby old bastard to hide it.
Mar 1, 2015 19:20:04 GMT -5
drocknut: Ok this cruddy rain and dreary weather can quit anytime. .what happened to sunny Arizona?
Mar 2, 2015 10:39:28 GMT -5
Fossilman: Diana,we got your sunny days,we gave you our rains-enjoy...LMAO...........
Mar 2, 2015 10:56:03 GMT -5
drocknut: No fair Fossilman..give back that sun.
Mar 2, 2015 10:58:18 GMT -5
snowmom: 2 below here, we are under an order to run water for the forseeable future (keep water mains from freezing and breaking. they say they will give us a break on our water bills. supposed to get 3 inches of ice and snow today. a lot of times they lie.
Mar 3, 2015 6:45:44 GMT -5
wampidy: High of about 10 today with 20 mph winds and up to 28 mph gusts. I was up from 1:30 to 2:30 am stuffing holes to cut down on the drafts. Had to cover the entire bottom of the range hood with the foam flooring. Can you say "wind tunnel"?
Mar 3, 2015 9:13:53 GMT -5
wampidy: Survive until the weekend and we will be in the fifties. YEEHAW
Mar 3, 2015 9:14:46 GMT -5
Fossilman: In the 60's here,sunny and a mild breeze.................Keep looking ahead people,spring is coming soon...
Mar 3, 2015 10:57:44 GMT -5
catmandewe: Headed North tomorrow
Mar 3, 2015 19:02:09 GMT -5
snowmom: Tony, where's North for you? (supposed to be above freezing on Saturday- maybe!)
Mar 4, 2015 4:12:28 GMT -5
catmandewe: Headed back to Idaho, left Phoenix tonight and got as far as Vegas, finish the rest up tomorrow.
Mar 4, 2015 5:04:26 GMT -5
snowmom: that's a lot of miles.
Mar 4, 2015 6:37:55 GMT -5
drocknut: Safe travels Tony.
Mar 4, 2015 11:15:52 GMT -5
catmandewe: Home now, glad I waited a few days as the roads were dry most of the way. You could see it had dumped the night before, there was still snow in the tree branches going through the passes.
Mar 5, 2015 0:09:48 GMT -5
snowmom: bet it was beautiful though. ( I may be prejudiced)
Mar 5, 2015 6:12:22 GMT -5
wampidy: Tony, good to hear that you survived that yucky warm weather in AZ and the trip back home. Hope you had a good season in Q. I missed you and all the goings on.
Mar 5, 2015 7:36:04 GMT -5
rockpickerforever: Questioning the sanity of anyone that heads NORTH during the winter, lol. Even the birds know to fly south! Posting a joke in the joke thread about retiring in the South.
Mar 5, 2015 10:57:25 GMT -5
drocknut: Glad you made it back safe and sound Tony.
Mar 5, 2015 12:47:47 GMT -5
catmandewe: Hangin with Lizee today, we are playing games in between unloading the pickup.
Mar 5, 2015 15:24:23 GMT -5
rockpickerforever: Sounds like fun, Tony. And how many days is that going to take? LOL
Mar 5, 2015 17:07:47 GMT -5