Tumbled gemstones! In today’s post, I am going to try to explain (to the best of my limited knowledge) tumbling, gemstone rough, and the process from rough to polished stones. The first picture is of some various gemstone rough that I found at my favorite gem hunting place, Gold ‘n’ Gem Grubbin’, in Cleveland, Georgia.
The gemstone rough shown above (from upper left) Amethyst, Aventurine, two Emeralds, Sodalite, and on the bottom row (from left) Sapphire and Rubies. Many of these gemstones will be key elements in The Gemstone Chronicles series.
I use a Lortone 3 lb tumbler (this is not an endorsement of Lortone products!!). The tumbling is a four part process that starts with a coarse grit and ends with a polishing step. Each of the steps takes about a week, so the entire process takes about a month to complete. Below is a picture of the tumbler.
Lastly, here are some pictures of the tumbled gemstones.
On the top row, Amethyst (very dark) a couple of lighter Amethysts, and an Aventurine. On the bottom row, three tumbled Blue Topaz.
There you have a very quick primer on how I go from rough gemstones to tumbled gemstones. You can research this much more and find that there are volumes written about the subject. It is a relatively inexpensive hobby, but one that can be fascinating! I know I’m hooked and will continue with my tumbling.
What are your favorite gemstones? Do you prefer faceted stones, cabochons, or tumbled? Leave me a comment and let me know!