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Rock Polisher?


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Posted · Rock Polisher?

I was wondering: Is anyone here using a rock polisher to clean up their prints? If so, what device do you use and what do you put in it for cleaning?


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    Posted · Rock Polisher?

    I use a standard tumbler I bought off of Amazon with a mixture of shot and nuts and bolts. But I have only used it with ColorFabb Bronzefill and Proto-Pasta Stainless Steel PLA.

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    Posted · Rock Polisher?

    Post finished with a vibratory tumbler is common in most industries. These tools are less used by lapidary. Seeking a lapidary tumbler will take you the wrong way. Think parts, ammunition brass, etc. One places a media in the tumbler that provides the desired results. Tumbling mediums are diverse, with engineered geometries to provide differing results. Cones, jacks, spikes, rods, spheres, etc.

    Lapidary does use these btw, but not as rock tumblers. Rotary systems are designed to remove detail, shaping and changing. Vibratory systems are used to polish, harden, and remove stray detail.

    Vibratory tumbling uses engineered geometries to provide the desired results. Little cones, jacks, spheres, etc. The media is graded in hardness to the product being tumbled as well. If you hunt thru jewelry finishing articles, say in Rio Grande, or YouTube, you will find lots of discussions on proper use of this tool. It is not appropriate for many models, but perfect for others. In our case, one can print a few plates of shapes in the same plastic we are finishing. Then use sawdust or such as the base to keep things from beating each other up.

    What I find perfect for almost everything I do, is a simply media blaster. Think sandblaster using baking soda. Harbor Freight sells these systems cheap also, you will need a containment system, but baking soda blasting gives you great control, and strips hair and such off models quickly.

    On harbor freight, just search for 'Blasting'

    Another tool that can be used more casually is a spot cleaning gun from the laundry industry. These shoot water out a fine nozzle so fast it can be hazardous. The following link is simply a grab from google, and not a vendor recommendation.


    My favored is simply media blasting with baking soda btw... Results are amazing, but does take practice to develop the art in using it.

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    Posted · Rock Polisher?

    For pla, acetone all the way. But you need to find the right brand that mixes it with reactable stuff.

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