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Thread: Homemade tumbler

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    Homemade tumbler

    Has anyone tried to make a homemade tumbler or has plans on how to make one. I'm too frugal to buy one and I've got a lot of brass I want to clean before I try and trade some of it away for a caliber I need. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Boolit Man moptop's Avatar
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    Moore, yes, I made my own vibratory tumbler from scratch and it works great! They are nothing more than a motor mounted to a container of some kind that is suspended by springs from a base so it can vibrate freely. The motor shaft has a off center weight that creates the vibration. I used cheapie tupperware bowl as my container. Very easy to build really. Mine has a slower vibration rate that is much quieter then my commercial made one and it cleans just as well.
    Take care, Moptop

  3. #3
    Boolit Master cheese1566's Avatar
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    I built a rotary using a five gallon bucket. It uses a two horizontal parallel shafts on bearings for the bucket to lay on. One shaft is connected to an elect motor via v-belt pulleys. The shafts are covered in heater hose to provide friction.

    Works OK. I use my old tumbler media in it with NuFinish to do large bulk lots. I then later finish with my little vibratory tumbler when ready to load.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

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    I had plans for several bookmarked until a computer crashed and we lost A LOT of info.

    Do a search of the sight as well as the web.

    Shiloh
    "A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves."
    Bertrand de Jouvenel

    “Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one.” – Joseph P. Martino

    “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years there would be a shortage of sand.” – Milton Friedman

  5. #5
    PAPERPATCH MASTER


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    Old roller skate wheels, a Bar-B-Q roterissie motor, a large #10 (?) can, a 1/4" socket from a socket set. Weld the socket to a thin piece of steel in the center end of the can. Mount the motor at same height as can on wheels. Cut a piece of 1/4" square rod to connect motor to can socket. Cut out opposite end of can and put several agitators in the can, pop rivet 1/4" angle rib metal. Put brass and media in can, put on lid and start motor. I used this type tumbler for about 3 years when I first started loading back in the `50`s.Robert

  6. #6
    me,myself and i
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    for a grin ...scroll down to post #28

    http://www.castboolits.gunloads.com/...t=94878&page=2

    but then remember with that grin that it works ......

  7. #7
    Boolit Mold
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    You know, I love the treadmill idea. Just happen to have one but I bet my wife would kill me if I told her I was going to use it to tumble brass. I think I'll try the 5 gal. bucket idea. Thanks everyone for the input and I'll post pictures once I get it done.

  8. #8
    Boolit Man moptop's Avatar
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    Here's a picture of the one I built. Hope that helps inspires someone to maybe make a better one!
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    Take care, Moptop

  9. #9
    me,myself and i
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    better as in looks or working ? ( and it's the last that counts , then comes durability ) quite a piece of engineering amigo !


    " You know, I love the treadmill idea. Just happen to have one but I bet my wife would kill me if I told her I was going to use it to tumble brass."

    ummm she'd be impressed by the miles u racked up on it.....until she found out why ( and ummm why do i suspect she uses it the most ? )

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
    a.squibload's Avatar
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    Well the treadmill with 3 jugs has great capacity anyway.

    I used a rotisserie motor (free), old garage door rollers and a ½ gallon salsa jug,
    plywood frame.
    Hardest part was cutting a square hole in the bottom of the jug to fit on the rotisserie shaft.
    Had to keep a finger on the hole when loading or unloading.
    Being a square jug the corners acted as agitators.
    It was pretty slow.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy crappiejig's Avatar
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    And I thought I was the only one who has used a treadmill for a tumbler!!!!!The treadmill sat there unused, so I found a use for it.It drove my wife so crazy, she went out and bought a tumbler(Frankfort Arsenal) to get me to stop using it! LOL
    Preserve Wildlife,,,,use freezer bags!

  12. #12
    Boolit Mold
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    What about the exersize bicycles? I bet we could rig up a bracket to support a tumbler drum and turn it as you peddle it it'll turn the drum and after a mile or so you'll have clean polished brass.

  13. #13
    me,myself and i
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    sure why not ? have u seen the foto of the foreign guy peddling one that runs a generator that powers his lap top ? funny stuff if i could find it again i'd share it ( i think it was captioned " microsofts help fone support "

    anything that turns it in the media should work , some better than others , i always liked the concrete mixer ones but ... i never had that much brass that needed cleaning at a time , thought i saw that midway had the FA one down to 39-40 on sale last nite while i liked the older 1292 the new one does work
    anyone recall ye olde vibra tech ones ? the ones that are on a block of wood ? they used a gallon plastic ice cream tub on a flat piece of metal attached to a 2x8 ( or 2x20 depending upon the model ) those were some noisy dudes !! i still have a large one i'd sell for the right song ( ie; about a $20 -30 concert ticket )

  14. #14
    Boolit Mold
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    I've seen the Microsoft support guy peddling. You've got to ask yourself if it could be true sometimes.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Wow! Somebody else has a Vibra-Tech noisemaker! I still use mine…outside next to an annoying neighbor's house as early as legal on Saturday mornings. Adjust the wheel for maximum "buzz," and leave it alone. Sometimes I even run it empty. I also keep my metal chop-saw in that quadrant of the yard, and have been known to cut scrap for no real reason, also early in the morning.

    I just LOVE this neighbor…

    Richard
    Plans and dreams are what we have until life gets in the way.

    E Clampus Vitus, Platrix Chapter No. 2 "Credo Quia Absurdum"

  16. #16
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Moore View Post
    Has anyone tried to make a homemade tumbler or has plans on how to make one. I'm too frugal to buy one and I've got a lot of brass I want to clean before I try and trade some of it away for a caliber I need. Thanks.
    How about using an old tire (with no wheel)? Put your brass and polishing media in to fill the bottom and roll it around for a couple of hours.

  17. #17
    me,myself and i
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    lolz @ typecaster ...i gave one to a bud once ( yes i admit i had two of them ) he threw it away [gasp] stated it was too noisy ..i agree they are noisy and perhaps not the best but they do work and if fined tuned per load they work decent , not great but adequate , set it on a upside down cookie sheet for maximum ummm buzz/rattle ( mite have to velcro it in place tho )

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
    mdi's Avatar
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    youtube has a bunch of ideas...

    http://www.youtube.com/results?searc...tumblers&aq=1m

    Ball mills, rock tumblers, brass tumblers, da same kind.
    Also search for "homemade brass tumbler".
    My Anchor is holding fast!

  19. #19
    Salty Dog

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    OMG, just don't make one like this guy did:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8uzk681Fco

    Did he just burp??????

    And, did he suggest that if, "she doesn't behave, just beat her?"


    NRA Life Member
    NRA Certified Metallic Cartridge Reloading Instructor

    Author of a book on reloading

  20. #20
    Boolit Mold
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    I changed my mind and made a vibrator. Doesn't look the like much but it sure turn the sand I used to try it out with. It was cheap too, got only $4 in it. I'll check out our local Southern States and see if they have ground corncob media then I'll really see how good it works. Thanks to everyone for the help.
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