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Thread: Barrel Polishing - how to achieve satin/matte finish

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
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    Default Barrel Polishing - how to achieve satin/matte finish

    Hi All,
    New to the forum and looking for some advice. I recently purchased the Gold Pro Max 3lb Barrelling machine with free starter kit from Cooksons. It's great, but the shot provided with it makes the pieces very shiny, which is not really what I'm ideally after. I normally hand polish all my pieces to a give a satin finish. Please could anyone advise what I need to but to put in the barrel to achieve this type of result?
    Thanks in advance,
    Gemma

  2. #2
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    Dec 2009
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    Well Gemma, what you need are ceramic chips and abrasive barrelling compound. They were never very popular and to my knowledge there is no information on them on this forum.

    A quick search of previous suppliers, such as Sutton tools and Eurotools & Findings, shows that they are no longer available.

    You might have have to import from Rio Grande, https://www.riogrande.com/search/go?...arreling+media

    or experiment with smashed up ceramics in barrelling soap after tumbling normally with shot. Dennis.

  3. #3
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    little cut up pieces of wet and dry paper, or better still micromesh, can work pretty well, and don't leave unwanted debris in the barrel if you wish to use it for shiny stuff on another occasion.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
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    The ceramic chips I use can be found here: http://www.cooksongold.com/Jewellery...prcode-998-006 or here: https://www.hswalsh.com/categories/barrelling-media-0

    Likewise the Cutting Compund 'PB' I use, here:http://www.cooksongold.com/Jewellery...prcode-998-005 or here: https://www.cousinsuk.com/product/cu...hing-compounds

    Together (1kg of chips plus a fresh heaped teaspoonful of cutting powder each time) in a 'dry' tumbler (I use a vibratory one) they will give you a matt finish, but it's not one I really like, and always understood that for a good matt finish you need to achieve a good polished finish then matt it back. So I just use the above as an initial finish, before polishing in the tumbler with crushed walnut and rouge. Then I use 'ScotchBrite' type materials to take it back to a matt finish I do like.

    Next time I go through the process with some work, I will take some photographs at each stage for reference.
    Last edited by Paul Kay; 03-05-2017 at 05:50 AM.

  5. #5
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    I've been experimenting with abrasive media in a barrel tumbler for mass finishing of cast pieces; to date, I've had the best results from Rio's small pyramidal media (6mm tetragons). TBH the barrel tumbler isn't ideal for this process - it might be fine for just texturing - and I'll probably have to switch to a vibratory tumbler to get the results I want. I've got both the ceramic media and the large cones from Cooksons; the ceramics gave a relatively hard impact mark and the plastic cones are too large to work on detail.

    I was trying to source the small plastic media from China but had some difficulty in persuading them to send samples to test before committing to a larger order (100kg or more).

  6. #6
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    Aug 2012
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    Oxon
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    you could try tumbling with a handful of coarse sand, that gives a mattish finish, though not as pronounced as I was trying for.

  7. #7
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    Apr 2017
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    Thanks, Dennis. I will take a look at that.

  8. #8
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    Apr 2017
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    Hi Paul, Sound all a bit complicated. Maybe I would be best to polish them in the tumbler and then matt back like you said. If you could send photos of each stage then that would be very useful for me.
    Thanks for your help.
    Gemma

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Preston, Lancashire.
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    Hello Gemma

    I use some green cutting cones:
    https://www.cousinsuk.com/product/cu...ones-prepolish

    Along with my regular barelling liquid:
    http://www.palmermetals.co.uk/shop/t...uid-250ml.html

    Everything comes out very (too) matte - I haven't got any pieces to show you in this matte stage though because I then blacken the pieces and pop them in with the shiny shot!

    Sally

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