Post by donsimpson on Feb 21, 2007 14:15:27 GMT -5
Is there a problem if your tumbler is full of foam? My kids are tumbling some agates and jaspers (one is porcelain stone, pet wood and moss agate, the other carnelian, tree agate and tiger eye), each in their own 3lb lortone barrel. We filled them normally, 3/4 full, 4 tblspoons of 60/90, enough water to almost cover the rocks. After a day, I checked to make sure it looked like slurry was happening, and both barrels were full of foam. And I do mean full. The foam is gritty, and clearly everything is moving around while the barrel is rolling. Is this normal/ok, or has a rock demon cursed my workshop?
Last Edit: Feb 21, 2007 15:13:19 GMT -5 by donsimpson
Hi Don - I've had foamy barrels before but its never really been a problem. I did read somewhere on here that it might be to do with some organic material within the stones just reacting with the water and the motion of the barrel. I think someone put Bicarb in the barrel to reduce it but I can't remember who!!
I don`t know what causes the foaming unless it`s gas in the stones,I read somewhere on this website that you can put a tum or rolaid in with it and that will eliminate the problem. I have been running some Botswana Agate,after 7 wks. i moved them into 120/220 and i came up with the same problem they started to foam and they were in for 7 days and when i moved them into 500 they weren`t foaming any more.I don`t think there`s anything to worry about........Rocky
I must be getting old,i don`t know if i found a rope or lost my horse.
I've added baking soda to a barrel for this reason. In the end, I had to add alot of baking soda for it to make a difference. The tumble ended just fine, and the foam helped suspend the grit (or so I like to tell myself). But yeah, I've been there early in my tumbling career. Scared me to death! In fact, it was one of the reasons I found this board!
Since then, I've added Borax to every stage and have avoided the foam problem, even when tumbling material from the same "load".
I have a question here --- could it be the grit ? the only times I've ever noticed it was when the grit had completely broken down ( like micron size)--- like after a week run in the vib -- but have used a different brand of grit with the same type of rock and never get any foam ------ thought maybe it was something that was added to make the grit ------ any thoughts on this ??
just keep an eye on the bottom of the barrels...if they protrude out...add a little tums or borax...if this doesnt work you may need to burp the barrels...just like a little baby...just open the top for a little air to escape...and carry on.
as far as diff grit goes....i havent a clue...i have only used stuff from the rockshed....and had only 1 issue of gas buildup...and that was when the son added cornmeal to the barrell...at least i think that is what it was...kev.
a good friend will bail you out of jail. a true friend will be sitting beside you, saying" damn that was fun"
Could be grit contamination- could be a poor rinse of the barrel, could be organics in the rock- But it happens sometimes- as long as the barrel does not build up too much pressure- you should be ok (I too add a bit of Borax)
I can't tell if thats some Gneiss Schist, or that Schist is Gneiss. All I know is don't take it for Granite
Post by donsimpson on Feb 22, 2007 11:03:03 GMT -5
Thanx everyone for the info. I don't think it's the grit because I some other rocks in a third barrel that isn't foaming. It's not causing the barrels to protrude, so I'll just leave well enough alone.
I too have the problem with foaming. It normally isn't too bad. However, today I started the polish stage, and within a few hours something told me to check it! Good thing I did, it was bulging the bottom of the barrel and was full of thick foam. I took all the foam out, and started it again. A few hours later, I checked it again. This time the foam was thicker and again bulging the bottom of the barrel. It was about ready to explode. What on earth could be causing it? Help please!!
God of Multiple Parallel Universes Full of Rocks and Apprentice to THE ONE.
Post by johnjsgems on Aug 25, 2012 22:45:38 GMT -5
You most commonly hear of foam from new to tumbling users that just have to open the tumbler after a day. Let it run 3-4 days and you rarely see foam. The old books said to open the barrels after3-4 days to "burp" the barrel. I did this when tumbling and adjusted water or added grit at that time. If you measure grit ( I never did) and start with water right and barrel properly loaded you can run 7-10 days before checking. Hard to be patient.
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