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Thread: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

  1. #1
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    Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)



    No way el cheapo Shootr was shelling out big bucks for a decent parts tumbler - and HF was out of the question. When a $400 gearmotor showed up on Craigslist for $25 - I was good to go!

    3-jaw coupler, iron pipe and fittings, skate wheels w/ bearings, heim joints as standoffs, yada yada yada...

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    Yay me!
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Good idea.
    Let us know how it works.
    I have nearly the same motor on a shelf in my shop.
    How did you put a key way on the pipe for the sections that goes to the bucket?
    Did you just get the heim joints online?
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    I made one out of an old cement mixer that I bought for $25. Different pullies to reduce the speed more and was good to go. Used it for years and sold it and actually made money.

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    neat but I think its kinder fast for a tumbler.
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    I just use a old cement mixer.
    For brass I saw a tumbler with car tire 🚗 on ever old mixer.

    Dave

    Quote Originally Posted by Shootr View Post


    No way el cheapo Shootr was shelling out big bucks for a decent parts tumbler - and HF was out of the question. When a $400 gearmotor showed up on Craigslist for $25 - I was good to go!

    3-jaw coupler, iron pipe and fittings, skate wheels w/ bearings, heim joints as standoffs, yada yada yada...

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    Yay me!
    Last edited by smithdoor; 3 Weeks Ago at 10:07 PM.

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by psacustomcreations View Post
    Good idea.
    Let us know how it works.
    I have nearly the same motor on a shelf in my shop.
    How did you put a key way on the pipe for the sections that goes to the bucket?
    Did you just get the heim joints online?
    Hopefully I'll get a chance to run something in it Sunday.

    No keyway on the pipe, I welded it to the hub.

    Amazon for darn near everything: heim joints, skate wheels, locking collars. Since the wheel bearing bores are 8mm (5/16) I stuck with that size for everything. The female of the joints are 8mmx1.25, and 5/16" rod for axles. $9.00 for 4 joints, and $10 for 8 wheels including double bearings in each one.

    Only real concern is the durability of the bucket - I'm on the lookout for a heavy duty one (paint bucket, or someone mentioned pickle barrels). Maybe try spraying some rubberized undercoating on the inside - might help with the longevity, and possibly a little noise mitigation.

    I just ordered some acoustic foam squares - going to line a box to put over it while it's running. It is unbelievably loud! If I ran it outside the neighbors would shoot me. In the closed garage I can still clearly hear it inside, and from the street. If I can knock that down even a little I'll be super happy. Have to keep an eye on the motor temp so I'll just see how it goes.

    EDIT: Now that I look at it I can slit the box where the driveshaft is and leave the motor on the outside.
    Last edited by Shootr; 3 Weeks Ago at 10:57 PM.
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by acourtjester View Post
    neat but I think its kinder fast for a tumbler.
    Yeah, I was wondering about that too. Any idea if one of those router speed controls could be used on it?

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    It is single phase

    Dave

    Quote Originally Posted by Shootr View Post
    Yeah, I was wondering about that too. Any idea if one of those router speed controls could be used on it?

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Nice layout.
    I'm curious to see if the bucket "walks" off the rollers because of the taper of the bucket from top to bottom.

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by rexcormack View Post
    Nice layout.
    I'm curious to see if the bucket "walks" off the rollers because of the taper of the bucket from top to bottom.
    The video is with a significant helping of gravel in it. Full or empty it doesn't walk at all. I aimed the drive shaft up slightly so the side of the bucket is parallel to the board. The rollers are also angled slightly so they all keep in contact with the bucket walls.
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    I totally missed the video!

    Any motor speed control will work as long as it is for ac motors and is 120vac and at least 5 amps.

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    This is an old epoxy stirring device, that I reworked into a tumbler.
    Originally the 5 gallon can of epoxy stood straight up, with a paddle in it.

    I angled it over, and bolted in a length of 8 inch X 8 inch X 3/16 inch square tube, with a bottom welded on.

    It will also do a great job of mixing a gallon can of paint.
    I put the gallon can in the square tube, and stuff in a towel, to hold the can in place.

    It is a perfect paint mixer. I can also "stir" spray paint cans, about a half dozen at a time,,

    Maybe,, to slow down your mixer, you could add a second reduction, like this mixer has.

    That chain on my mixer is about the size of bicycle chain.
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    I would look for this type of barrel they hold 12 Gal and are thick plastic straight sides. Go on facebook shopping and look for plastic barrels, there all over selling these things.
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  22. #14
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Good suggestions all - thanks for taking the time to respond and add your experiences.

    I'm on the hunt for a better barrel on all the sales sites - I've seen ads plenty of times before but now - nada.

    Darn near every speed control I'm seeing is 15A so I'll give one a try.

    Ceramic media - man are sellers proud of their stuff! I'm tempted to throw a bunch of broken tiles in it and tumble for a week or so.

    How much media is a normal fill for something like this? Also, I've read there should be some compound in with the media when using it. Simple Green has been mentioned a couple of times. Any thoughts on that?
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    We had an ancient "Burr Bench" years ago.
    We used the ceramic media.
    Plain water was the only solution we ever used.

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Shot two coats of rubberized undercoating into the bucket, letting the sound foam air out, and snazz'd it up a little.

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  26. #17
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    If that is an induction motor, I don't think the router speed controls will work. I think they require a Universal type motor like most small hand power tools have (like routers..). Universal motors have brushes and can be speed controlled with that type. I am not an electrical dude but I THINK a Variac type control can work on induction motors but it may depend on what exact type of motor it is. (Yeah there are a lot of "I thinks" in there, but I would recommend you do a bit of searching so you can figure out what if anything might work...)
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    I finally found the pics of the tumbler I purchased about 20 years ago,,
    The US Army DIYed this to tumble truck snow chains,, I guess they had to be shiny for inspection??

    I bought it to build a wood stove out of,, it seemed perfect for that,,



    In that pic, I was using the tumbler as a paint stand,,

    Once I used it as a parts tumbler, it stayed a tumbler. The "drum" has a center partition, so there are two chambers, and two cover doors.



    That is a 6 foot grader box behind it,, for scale,, this thing is BIG!!

    That aluminum plate in the lower left corner is one of the bolt on covers.

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by SweetMK View Post
    I finally found the pics of the tumbler I purchased about 20 years ago,,
    The US Army DIYed this to tumble truck snow chains,, I guess they had to be shiny for inspection??

    I bought it to build a wood stove out of,, it seemed perfect for that,,



    In that pic, I was using the tumbler as a paint stand,,

    Once I used it as a parts tumbler, it stayed a tumbler. The "drum" has a center partition, so there are two chambers, and two cover doors.



    That is a 6 foot grader box behind it,, for scale,, this thing is BIG!!

    That aluminum plate in the lower left corner is one of the bolt on covers.
    That's amazing - and cool! What and how much media does it use? And I thought mine was loud - I can only imagine yours!
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Finished it up I believe.

    1) Motor is definitely not speed controllable. After it's first trial, I don't think 60rpm will be an issue. If anything, down the road I'll do the paddles differently - smaller/shorter ones scattered around the circumference.

    2) Spray bedliner and acoustic foam box did a nice job of bringing the noise level down. Started at 75dB bare machine, down to 65dB with the attenuation. Big difference.

    3) 60 minute test showed it will work great. Through a few things in with 10lbs of HF ceramic media and a dash of Simple Green. Doesn't quite strip paint lol, but sure did nice on the other stuff.

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    Couldn't be happier. Another step towards producing more polished art pieces. PUN INTENDED!
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  32. #21
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by Shootr View Post
    That's amazing - and cool! What and how much media does it use? And I thought mine was loud - I can only imagine yours!
    The nearest neighbor is over 700 feet away,, but, I drove past their house with it running,, you can CLEARLY hear the thing running.
    I wear hearing protection if I am within 100 feet of the thing when running.
    I will put on the ear muffs even if I am only going close to it to shut it off, it is that loud,,,
    but, my attitude is,, this is a rural area,, people make noise,,
    I have two neighbors with BIG excavators that have each been moving earth for over a year,, my noise is nothing.

    A normal cycle is usually two hours, so, I only run it when most people would be cutting grass.
    The sheriff would probably show up if I started it at 10PM at night.

    As far as media,, I have used many types of media.
    for a fine finish, sand blasting sand and grit works,, I have at least three types that a neighbor gave me.
    One is "Black,, something" ,, it goes in looking like fine broken black glass, and grinds into a dust,, it leaves a nice finish.
    Sandbox sand works,,
    I have used limestone "57's" driveway gravel,, IMHO, the limestone is too soft to cut much. It works, but, not like ceramic media.
    I have a 5 gallon bucket of bandsaw "drops",, the small parts that are the start of a cut, or a little left over piece.
    The steel parts are excellent for cleaning up rusty steel parts, if I remember correctly, there are even some short chain lengths in there.
    I know I have used tire snow chain cross links, they are the perfect length.

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  34. #22
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    Aaaaah, to have that kind of space - I can dream anyways. At another job, in another time, I had 2 acres all to my self. But no time to do anything with it.

    Everything right now is an experiment. The HF media is huge so I'm getting some smaller 5/8" ceramic pieces to try. Right now I have it running with damp sandbox sand on the 2 big hooks - one stripped and the other only tumbled in the prior stuff. At least it's waaaaay quieter.

    Also slapped together another bucket with smaller flights to see how that works.

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    I dig that the jaw coupler just unscrews from one bucket and back onto the other - easy peasy.

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    I'll give it a try in a few days when I have different media to try.

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  36. #23
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    The "HEX" , or eight sided drum on mine does such a good job, I am surprised concrete mixing trucks are not hex shaped, instead of round,,

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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    I JUST looked on line at what our local Lowes has in stock , listed as "landscape rock"

    They have bags of 0.5 cubic foot (which is a LOT of media) for about $5 a bag,,

    The "LAVA" rock looks interesting,, I would imagine it would cut well,,
    Then they have "pond stone", "River Rock",, and also various sizes,,
    I would try the "Marble" rock,, that should cut,,

    As far as noise, if you found the right foam, then cut it into 1 inch cubes, and put it "INSIDE" the drum with the media and parts,,
    The cubes would let the media cut, but would dampen the noise.

    The gun guys use walnut hulls, and corncob as media to polish brass,,
    If you had some old sandpaper, you could tear that up and throw in pieces of the sandpaper,,
    The sandpaper would be abrasive, and sound deadening.

    I bought some surplus sanding belts at a local junk shop,
    The belts are 6 inches wide, and 20 feet long, they cost $1 each,,
    I might toss one of those in some time, just to see what happens.

    You might invent a whole new technology,, when you find the "newest media",,,

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  39. #25
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    Re: Parts Tumbler Anyone :-)

    I think the rould sides make the mix slide and hit the divider this disrupts the flow for more turbulence. The hex shape makes more of a layer flopping action less turbulence IMHO
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