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Old 09-20-2016, 09:35 AM
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Default Garage sale tumbler - Cleaning clad for the first time.

Found a used 12 lb capacity Thumbler rock tumbler at a garage sale, missing the lid and clamp, and needing a belt, for just a few bucks. So, I ordered the parts and now she is all cleaned up and fixed up ready to clean clad. The drum is about 1 gallon size, and I don't have that much clad! How full does the drum need to be to function correctly? The directions say, for tumbling rocks, 3/4 full with contents just covered with water. Do I need to get 10 lbs of natural gravel, or can I use 5lb. and run it less (half) full?

btw. There was some old paperwork with the tumbler, and it appears it was purchased in 1994. Retail price was $34.95. Value of the $ sure is going down.
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  #2  
Old 09-20-2016, 10:15 AM
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I like the small river rocks (rounded & smooth)

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Old 09-20-2016, 04:38 PM
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I use fish tank gravel . I run mine about half full with 2 or 3 drops of dish detergent and about a cup of water. let it go 6 or 8 hours clad comes out looking great. Also only use white or brown gravel it is natural the bright red green blue ect, have dye on it and will rub off on your coins.
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Old 09-21-2016, 10:08 PM
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If your coins are discolored use white aquarium gravel with a good squirt of BLUE Dawn dis detergent and a good splash of white vinegar and another of bleach and cover with water. I did 3 loads last night and my coins came out sparkling

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Old 09-21-2016, 10:12 PM
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Thanks! Bought a 5 lb. bag of natural aquarium gravel and I'll put that in the 12 lb. drum along with the dish soap and clad. Then run it about four hours and check the results.
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  #6  
Old 09-25-2016, 12:27 AM
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I thought I read somewhere that it was suggested separate copper coins from other silver or regular clad. True or did I remember what I read wrong?

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  #7  
Old 09-25-2016, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by OneStudPuppy View post
I thought I read somewhere that it was suggested separate copper coins from other silver or regular clad. True or did I remember what I read wrong?
Yea if you don't they all come out looking like copper.
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Old 09-28-2016, 09:23 PM
NectarDetector NectarDetector is offline
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I see a canadian quarter in there, is it silver?
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Old 09-28-2016, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by NectarDetector View post
I see a canadian quarter in there, is it silver?
Looks like it says 200*
It would be hard for a veteran detector miss a silver quarter, but I guess it could happen. Hope I never have!

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  #10  
Old 09-28-2016, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by NectarDetector View post
I see a canadian quarter in there, is it silver?


I wish I had missed a silver... not impossible, but embarrassing if it was ...

... but no, it's a 1988. Sad to say, only worth 25c if spent here in the U.S.

Don't think I could miss a US silver, but Canadian, maybe..

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  #11  
Old 09-29-2016, 07:38 AM
NectarDetector NectarDetector is offline
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Originally Posted by Mikey48 View post


I wish I had missed a silver... not impossible, but embarrassing if it was ...

... but no, it's a 1988. Sad to say, only worth 25c if spent here in the U.S.

Don't think I could miss a US silver, but Canadian, maybe..

Next time!
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  #12  
Old 10-01-2016, 01:54 AM
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All you guys and your tumblers! I've had a tumbler in storage since we moved back to Florida. Knew what box number it was in, had all the parts and pieces together in that box... but I'll be danged if I could find it in the storage unit. Last week the wife found a cheaper better and closer to us storage place so we started moving from the old unit to the new unit. After several grueling hours, out leapt my beloved and much searched for box # "M80" with my Thumblers Tumbler AR2 and the media that I used to use to clean my cases before I reloaded them. It's extruded steel pieces, works great on fired pistol and rifle cases, so I took some of the worst of the "Felix Zincolns" that I have and threw them into one of the tubs with the media, some dish soap and water. I'll show you the before now and update this thread after I get done with the run.

Here's the before... and the during, sort of


Name:  Felix Zincolns.jpg
Views: 893
Size:  106.1 KB

Name:  Tumbler.jpg
Views: 866
Size:  137.2 KB

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  #13  
Old 11-09-2016, 10:24 AM
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Folks laugh at me when I tell them that I use chicken grit in my tumbler to clean coins. It appears to be small pieces of granite. Obtained from Tractor Supply.

For clad coins I use white vinegar and a table spoon or so of rock salt. Tumble for 15 minutes and most are clean enough to go thru the coin counting machine at the credit union.

For pennies I use tap water and a bit of dish detergent. I usually tumble them over night. Crusty zincolns may take a bit longer and some of them never will be usable again.
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