Lesson 3: Lapidary Fundamentals: Gemstone Tumbling

Step 1: Introduction to Gemology

Lesson 14

The simplest (and least expensive) lapidary art form to learn is gemstone polishing. The only equipment you need is a tumbler and abrasives, often sold in kits, and the rough you want to polish. The only skills you need to start is the ability to read instructions and measure the abrasives. Nevertheless, before you buy your first gem tumbler, there are a few important factors to bear in mind.

Gemstone Tumbling: Preliminary Considerations

Stone Sizes

In order for the tumbling action to work, you must place stones of various sizes in the revolving barrel. They need to range from not more than half the diameter of your barrel to about 1/10th the size of the largest stone. You cannot simply put a few large pieces in the tumbling barrel and expect them to come out nice.

Simply gathering stones …

Unearth The Secrets Behind The Beauty

Introducing "Discover Gemology" by IGS, the premiere introductory training for those fascinated by the magnificent world of gemology.

  • How to spot the most unique & valuable characteristics of different gemstones
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Course: Discover Gemology: Fundamentals, Tools & Meanings
Purchase Course: $49
Skill Level: beginnner
Lessons: 48
Time: 480 min