Ads

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Tumbling amber

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Tumbling amber

    Hi, bit of a query here I hope someone can help with. I made myself a ring set with green amber and would like to put it into a tumble polisher.

    However, I have the distinct feeling that amber, of any colour, is too soft for that type of treatment.

    Can anyone confirm this for me? Or tell me I'm wrong and I can polish it? if not, it's just going to have to look white, white silver . . .
    http://www.folksy.com/shops/silvermoss

    http://silvermoss.blogspot.com/

  • #2
    Hi
    I personally wouldnt want to put it in the tumbler but if you must then I would double wrap the amber in masking tape or duct tape and pop it in. Afterwards I would wash the item with soapy water to take any residue/stickyness off and and buff with a soft cloth. Hope this helps.

    Maiden x

    Comment


    • #3
      I wouldn't chance the tumbler. Couldn't you polish the ring with a polishing mop on a dremel like machine or one of those grinding wheel jobs with a polishing head. I never had a tumbler and did all my polishing that way.
      "You've Got to Keep Your Mind Wide Open" - AnnaSophia Robb
      my Folksy shop Goldy'sclearoutblog debaynewebdesign


      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for the replies - I'd not thought of using masking tape and that's a great idea! I'm not sure how well it would hold up in the water though, and it's only a small stone so it might be tricky to cover it well enough, without covering much of the silver as well. But one to bear in mind.

        Yes, I will probably end up polishing it by hand but it's got some very tiny detail on it and it'll be nigh on impossible to get it all polished.

        So I might just leave it matt and interesting . . .

        Many thanks again for the helpful replies and kind of confirming what I already suspected.
        http://www.folksy.com/shops/silvermoss

        http://silvermoss.blogspot.com/

        Comment


        • #5
          Just did a bit of googling Amber has a hardness of 2 - 2.5 if that helps.
          "You've Got to Keep Your Mind Wide Open" - AnnaSophia Robb
          my Folksy shop Goldy'sclearoutblog debaynewebdesign


          Comment


          • #6
            Ooh no help at all but it sounds very interesting. Is this the sort of thing you wuld learn in a silversmithing course or would you need to go on a different course about sorting stones?
            Handmade Embroideries and Tapestries - Greentree Crafts on Facebook Etsy Shop Instagram

            Comment


            • #7
              Lapidary is a whole other ball game but this site is a good start for info. http://www.delscope.demon.co.uk/ratl/ratl01.htm
              "You've Got to Keep Your Mind Wide Open" - AnnaSophia Robb
              my Folksy shop Goldy'sclearoutblog debaynewebdesign


              Comment


              • #8
                Well, I learnt about setting stones on a silversmithing course (and I also learnt how easily even the harder ones can crack if they've got fault lines!!) but not about the stones in any detail.

                The hardness info is interesting, thanks Goldy
                http://www.folksy.com/shops/silvermoss

                http://silvermoss.blogspot.com/

                Comment


                • #9
                  yes me too, but it was my tutor that told me the trick about the masking/duct tape. I would put the piece in a small tupperware container with a lid and just pop a small amount of the shot and fluid in it, then pop it into the large tumbler (put the lid back on mind!) after you have put the tape on the amber. It still works the same and you could keep checking it every 15 mins or so and re-applying the tape if need be.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Almost all chemicals (inc harsher soaps) will make Amber lose it's lustrous appearancce. Millions of years ago amber was Tree Sap so contains lots of natural oils which can be dried out with chemical cleaners....
                    I always polish amber by hand
                    **FREE to enter monthly draw on my BLOGS**
                    Different prize every month
                    Jewellery Creations & Shop Blog
                    PMC & Silver Clay Hints and Tips Blog

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I've chickened out of even putting the ring near the tumbler now!

                      But the tip about using a smaller container is very interesting, if not for this ring then other items where I'm a bit nervous as to how they'll react. Thanks so much for the advice!
                      http://www.folksy.com/shops/silvermoss

                      http://silvermoss.blogspot.com/

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I often set stones that are a bit delicate so I tumble the setting first (shiny without the stone risk). Another cheap way, is to use a good electric toothbrush (e.g. sonicare). Don't throw away your used heads...
                        keep them for use in polishing ~ they work really well and you can switch over from your proper toothbrush in seconds
                        **FREE to enter monthly draw on my BLOGS**
                        Different prize every month
                        Jewellery Creations & Shop Blog
                        PMC & Silver Clay Hints and Tips Blog

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Ahem, yes, I was hoping no one would mention that I should have polished the silver first. I got a bit excited about setting a stone (the first one I'd done on my own) and didn't have a tumbler then so just popped the stone firmly in. It'll never come out now!

                          The electric toothbrush idea is genius! Just so long as I remember to swap the heads around again . . .
                          http://www.folksy.com/shops/silvermoss

                          http://silvermoss.blogspot.com/

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I used to work in a jewellery store, and I remember we got a "sonic" jewellery cleaner in...cleaned using vibrations or something...have to admit I never paid a huge amount of attention to it, but the results were impressive. Mind you, I tried to stay away from cleaning the jewellery there full stop as there were no protective gloves available to use with the silver and gold cleaners, both of which were toxic and could be absorbed through the skin. I complained to my boss but got nowhere. *sighs*.

                            Anyhow, point I was trying to make is it may be worth taking it to a few jewellers and asking if they had something similar...can't remember if it's called a sonic bath or cleaner or what, but it worked well. Been a while since I worked there, and my memory is terrible, so I apologise!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              We use an ultrasonic cleaner for some of the stuff on the stall but I wouldn't recommend you use one for gemstones as if there's the slightest flaw in the stone (as there often is in natural semi-precious gemstones) then there's a chance that the stone can shatter.

                              They're great for cleaning metals though and only cost around £25 but I'm not sure they'd put a shine on un-polished metal as they're a cleaner and not a polisher.
                              Auntynet

                              Step-daughter's website selling hand dyed sock yarns www.knotanotherknitter.com




                              ~ * ~ * ~ Of all the things I've ever lost, I miss my mind the most! ~ * ~ * ~

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X