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    DIY Parts Tumbler


    Number of posts : 107
    Location : Cameron Park, CA
    Registration date : 2011-04-25

    DIY Parts Tumbler Empty DIY Parts Tumbler

    Post by equium Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:15 pm

    When I can't work on the van, I try to keep busy. Here is a little something I put together.
    DIY Parts Tumbler.
    I needed something with a strong motor with plenty of torque. After much searching, I found that a traditional ice cream maker would do the trick.
    DIY Parts Tumbler Maker_10
    You can find these at any thrift store for under 10 bucks.
    Next, you will need to modify the tub that would have normally held the liquid for the ice cream.
    DIY Parts Tumbler Maker_11

    You can discard the paddle assembly that goes inside, it is not needed.
    DIY Parts Tumbler Paddle10

    The inside of the cylinder is smooth, and will not be effective for turning parts. You will need to add something to churn it up. I added a piece of "L" aluminium that I had around. I used a few nuts and bolts to hold it in place. You don't need to worry about it being water tight. The piece I added in mine keeps things moving during a tumble. If you look closely at the bottom of my cylinder, you'll see a bold head. I don't have a picture, but I added a bolt and nut at the bottom so that the bolt extended about an inch past the bottom of the tumbler cylinder. I then drilled the bottom of the TUB so the bolt would fit in there. More on this later.
    And now for the parts to be tumbled. These are various nuts and bolts and you'll recognize the triangle shapes used for the slant 6 manifolds.
    DIY Parts Tumbler Parts_10

    Tumbling Media:
    I have used crushed corn cobs and crushed walnut shells. Both of these are available at most any pet store. In a pinch, I have also used dry rice.

    Fill the cylinder about half way with the media and drop your parts in there.
    Don't go crazy and over load it. Attach the cover on the cylinder. you will need to tape the seams otherwise the media may seep out.
    DIY Parts Tumbler Taped_10

    Now for the tumbling. You will need to set the entire unit at an angle or on it's side. This is where the bolt on the bottom comes into play by keeping the cylinder centered during a tumble. Here is mine that I set in a trash can for support.
    DIY Parts Tumbler On_the10

    I usually tumble my parts for about 10-12 hours. Be warned: Ice cream maker motors are not quiet! I either have to run mine during the day or away from the house. A few times, I have run an extension cord about 50 feet and placed the unit in my A100 and closed the doors and let it run all night. I'm out in the country so I have no neighbors to bother.

    After a tumble, separate the parts from the media. You can re-use the media a few times if you like, or use fresh.
    And now some pictures of the results:

    DIY Parts Tumbler After_10

    DIY Parts Tumbler After_11

    DIY Parts Tumbler Parts_11

    I hope you enjoyed my show. It's not fancy, but if you shop around and don't mind fiddling, it's a fun project.


    Number of posts : 6186
    Location : spokane ,Wa.
    Registration date : 2009-09-28

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    Post by Twinpilot001 Thu Nov 29, 2012 7:52 pm

    Nice idea=Great =i have bought on ebay & some other sites =some actual cheapo rifle/gun brass tumblers= media is cheap too- usually i give 5-15 bucks for the tumblers.There are some sifters that also make getting the parts out of the media also.Happy Vannin


    Number of posts : 3046
    Location : Chino Valley
    Registration date : 2010-01-21

    DIY Parts Tumbler Empty Re: DIY Parts Tumbler

    Post by RodStRace Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:29 pm

    I borrowed a friend's Eastwood tumbler. I found that
    1. a screened strainer can be found at many garage sales cheap to dump the stuff out into and rinse. A cookie sheet is also useful to lay the stuff out and pick out the parts.
    2. a magnet is a useful tool to get the prizes out of the media!
    3. he had the green pyramids. It did a good job, but with some evaporust, they came out great!
    4. The media loves to nestle into nuts and those /6 washers. I had a small pocket screwdriver and a pick handy to dig them out.
    5. Don't forget the old rock tumblers and as said, the gun shell tumblers. Anything that can rumble away for hours with your stuff inside.
    6. since you have the parts separated into marked baggies (you do, don't you?), you can keep track of what is in there and stop looking as soon as all the stuff is found.
    Magic Bus
    Magic Bus

    Number of posts : 1422
    Location : -Gateway to the West - St Louis Missouri
    Registration date : 2009-12-02

    DIY Parts Tumbler Empty Re: DIY Parts Tumbler

    Post by Magic Bus Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:04 pm

    I've been fiddling with cars for a long time but have never really been exposed to this idea, pretty cool!

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