If you’re looking for the perfect gift to give someone, but don’t know what they would like, then consider getting them a gemstone polishing kit. These kits are great for beginners because they come with everything that is needed to start polishing stones. This includes numerous types of abrasives and waxes. We will go over the basics of how these kits work so that you can confidently purchase one as a gift!
What are gemstone polishing kits and how do they work?
A gemstone polishing kit is a great gift for anyone who likes working with stones. These kits come with everything that you need to start polishing, including an assortment of abrasives and waxes. You can use them on many types of materials such as gems, crystals, glass, plastic, wood, and even metal! The process usually involves using a series of abrasives to create a smooth surface. For example, you can use a coarse material such as pumice which is used for the initial shaping, and then follow it up with something smoother like tin oxide or cerium oxide. You will find that some kits come with one type of abrasive while others have multiple types so you will need to choose which one is best for your project.
The beauty of these kits is that they have all the materials needed to get started so you don’t need to purchase anything else to start polishing stones. All you will need is a little bit of water and some patience since it does take time to create a smooth surface by hand!
How to choose a gemstone polishing kit
If you are purchasing a gemstone polishing kit as a gift, then consider the person’s interests. Think about whether they like working with gemstones or if they simply would appreciate having one because it makes for an interesting hobby.
The barrel size of a tumbler is important because it will affect how smooth the stones become. If you have a small barrel, then the stones will be more difficult to polish. Conversely, if you have a large barrel, then the stones will take less time to polish but the results may not be as good. It’s best to choose a size that is in between these two extremes.
A tumbling barrel should be filled with enough abrasives and water to submerge half of the stones inside, otherwise, they may not get polished evenly. When experimenting with how much grit is best for different types of materials, it’s always better to start on the low end if you’re not sure. This way if the stones are not polished evenly, then you can try increasing the amount of grit until they become smooth enough to your liking.
The noise level of a tumbler can be annoying, especially if you need to use it for an extended period. For example, some people like using them in the evening so that they can work on their stones without disturbing anyone else around them.
If this is the case, then you will want to choose a model that has a low noise level.
Alternatively, some people don’t mind the noise and find it relaxing. In this case, any type of tumbler would be suitable for them. Just keep in mind that if you decide to give this as a gift, then the noise level may not be something that the recipient will appreciate.
The hardness of a gemstone is important because it determines how well it can be polished. If the stones are too different in hardness, then you may end up with some that are not correctly polished. This is why it’s important to choose a kit that has all the same types of gemstones so that you don’t have to worry about this.
If you do have a kit where the stones are not all of the same hardness, then keep in mind that it may take much longer to polish them because each stone will require different types and amounts of abrasives.
Gemstone polishing kit may also include:
- A tapered spindle to hold the stones while they are being polished
- A container to hold the polishing compound
- A lid for the container
- Some kits also include a magnifying glass so that you can see what you are doing more clearly
- A bench polisher is another type of tool that can be used to polish gemstones. This is a more powerful version of a tumbler and the results are much better, but it’s also more expensive.
- Jewelry pliers (depending on what types of stones your kit includes). These will only be necessary if you plan to use the stones in jewelry making.
Step-by-step instruction on using gemstone polishing kit
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to polish gemstones using a kit.
- Fill the barrel with enough water so that it covers half of the stones. Add in the grit compound according to the instructions and mix until it is dissolved.
- Place the stones inside of the barrel and make sure that they are submerged halfway. Close the lid and start it running.
- After a day of polishing, check on your stones to see how smooth they have become so far. If you want them smoother than this, then switch out the grit compound with a finer one or add more water if needed. Continue checking every day until they are to your liking.
- Remove the stones from the barrel and rinse them off with water. Dry them off with a towel and then use a jeweler’s cloth to polish them until they shine.
Here are a few tips on how to get the most out of your new gemstone polishing kit.
- When adding the grit compound, make sure that it is fully dissolved before you add in the stones. Otherwise, they may not be polished evenly.
- If some of the stones are harder than others, then give them more time to polish using a finer grit compound. If you switch out the compound too soon, then it may not be able to get them as smooth and shiny as the softer stones.
- Tiny gems are much less likely to slip and cause damage to the stones if you are using jewelry pliers.
- To get that highly polished shine, use a jeweler’s cloth instead of just using water because it will give you much better results.
Here are a few of the most common mistakes that people make when using their new gemstone polishing kit:
- Not dissolving the grit compound before adding in the stones. This will cause them to not be polished evenly
- Adding too much water or not enough water. If there is too much water, then it will dilute the compound and make it less effective. If there is not enough water, then the stones will not polish correctly
- Using the wrong grit compound. This can cause some stones to not be polished correctly or take much longer to polish than others
- Not checking on the stones every day. This will result in them not being polished evenly and may cause some of them to be damaged
- Not using a jeweler’s cloth to polish the stones. This will not give them as good of a shine as if they were polished with water
What type of stones can I polish with a kit?
Most kits will allow you to polish a variety of different types of gemstones, but there may be some exceptions. Make sure to read the product description carefully before purchasing so that you know what stones are included in the kit.
Are kits better than hand-polishing?
It depends on what you plan to use them for. If you want a very high shine, then it may be best if your stones are polished either by machine or with one of these polishing kits because this will give you much better results than just using water and a cloth.
What grit compound should I use for my stones?
You can experiment with different types of compounds and see which one works best for your specific type of gemstones, but the standard ones that most kits come with is known as 120-grit, 220-grit, and 600-grit. It may also be a good idea to get a finer grit compound if you want your stones to be even smoother.
Can I use my kit on other objects?
Most kits are not meant for use on anything other than gemstones, but there may be some exceptions. Make sure to read the product description carefully before purchasing so that you know what the kit is specifically for.
How often should I check on my stones?
It depends on how fast they are polishing and what type of grit compound you are using, but it is generally a good idea to check on them at least once a day. This will help ensure that they polish evenly and that no damage occurs.
What happens if I drop one of the stones into my kit?
It is best to try and find it, but if you can't then your stones will not be polished correctly. This may cause them to need a longer time in the polishing solution or they might even become damaged by getting stuck somewhere inside of it. You should also replace your compound every couple of weeks because this will help keep your stones polished evenly.
If you’re looking for a thoughtful gift for someone who likes to work with gemstones, then a polishing kit is perfect. Gemstone kits have everything that the user needs to get started. They are much more affordable than purchasing each item separately. When it comes to quality, these kits can’t be beaten so don’t hesitate any longer! Give a kit as a present today or buy your own. You won’t regret it.