Tumble Polished Gemstones
A tumbled-polished gemstone is one that has been smoothed and polished to a high gloss by slowly grinding the stones against each other in barrel-like tumblers. Depending on the stone type, and the skill of the person managing the process, it may take anything from a few days to several weeks to achieve the desired result. Although the tumbling process remains a fairly "mechanical" process, there is a great deal of skill involved in obtaining the desired "polish" to the different stone types. However the basic process is one of using a grinding paste of Silicon Carbide Abrasive Powder and water to grind the stones to shape followed by a final tumbling with a polishing powder.

A brief history of gemstone tumbling...,

Gemstone tumbling was started commercially in the United States in 1953. At that time, the tumblers used were literally no more than household paint cans, but as demand for the fabulous gemstone-products increased, the tumbler sizes increased until they reached the "6000-pound" tumblers which proved to be an ideal mix of size and efficacy. This size of commercial tumbler is still used today. The vibrating tumbler then entered the market as it speeded up the process of tumbling certain gemstone types and sizes.

Craftstones Europe keeps over 150 varieties of gemstones in stock, most of them have been processed in the factory in South Africa.
Sub categories
Gemstones for births & signs of the Zodiac
Certain gemstones are associated with particular months of the year and considered lucky to people born in those months. Some attribute the origin of the tradition of birthstones to the 12-jewlled breastplates, a vestment worn in ancient times, of Aaron, the brother of Moses. Myths and superstitions gradually grew around the stones and symbolic meanings or virtues were eventually ascribed to them. Following zodiac gems are considered to be the most commonly accepted. The first record of wearing stones of the month was in Poland in the 18th century when they were worn to keep illness away.
Tumblestone Sizes & Gradings
Tumbled Gemstone Sizes. This chart shows the actual sizes of the stones we offer. We also include the approximate amount of stones per kg. There will be some variation due to stone shapes and specific gravity, but these figures have proved to be accurate averages over many years of production. Tumbled Gemstone Gradings. Sorted Grade: Most polished stone from size 1LG upwards are hand sorted. Initially, obviously off-coloured or mixed materials are removed. The batch is then inspected for chipped or broken stones. These are removed and what remains constitutes SORTED GRADE stock. Unsorted Grade: It is difficult to hand sort sizes 00, 0 and 1SM economically, therefore these sizes are generally sold UNSORTED. The high percentage of usable material and the lower price combine to make UNSORTED GRADE stones most acceptable. In many instances sizes NO 1LG and No 2 are offered in both UNSORTED and SORTED grades. This chart shows the sizes in which our stones are offered, together with the average number of stones per kilogram in each of our 12 different sizes. There may be minor variations due to individual stone shapes, differing specific gravity and other inherent factors, but the yields quoted have proved to be an accurate average over many years of production.
A
Abalone to Aventurine
B - C
Beryl to Copper Nuggets
D - I
Dalmation Stone to Idocrase
J - L
Jade to Lodestone
M - P
Magnesite to Pyrite
Q - R
Green Qtz to Ruby in Zoisite
S - U
Seraphinite to Unakite
This category has been reviewed
We are in the process of reviewing this section of the website. If you have a question please give us call : 01737 767 363 or email us at craftstones@craftstones.co.uk
Tumbled Mixed
Contains only naturally colored stones. This mix is especially useful for Museum sales when dyed stones may not be appropriate, as well as "Scratch Patch" where children can search for their favourite tumble-polished gemstones.