Buffing/Tumbling Bulk Sterling Disc
I run a hand stamped jewelry business and use sterling silver 22g. disc- mainly circles. I recently found a wholesale supplier that is 1/2 the cost of what I have been paying. However, the disc have many more scratches and nicks in them than what I was buying.
I have currently been sanding them with various grades of sandpaper *by hand and then tumbling them. It works, but my fingers are sore and I'd almost rather pay the extra money if I can't find a better way. Being a small business owner though- I need to make every penny I can:)
I saw you mentioned the flex-shaft and buffing pads in some of your answers. I've read about them and the different kinds of rouge, but I just don't know exactly what to buy/where to start. Any advice is greatly appreciated.
I buy the disc already cut out and some are very small 3/8"-1" circles. Would I lay them down on something to use a buffing wheel- would it sling them out?
Love the website.
Sounds like part of what you were paying for before was some of the laborious finishing work. I've found that often the finishing work takes as long or longer than the fabrication! I agree, it's hard work smoothing rough edges on discs, and the smaller they are, the more tedious the work! Not to mention the abuse your hands can take. Only you can weigh time invested/vs cost and how that affects your overall profits.
So....you can try tumbling with a cutting agent first to remove the really rough spots like plastic or ceramic media and detergent, then switch to stainless steel shot for putting on more of a high-polish shine. As to using a buffing wheel, etc. You might be able to hold the discs in place with some sticky-stuff while you use a polishing wheel attached to a flexshaft or dremel. But, I bet some of them would become airborne missiles! Safety goggles would be a good idea if you try that method. All kidding aside, I don't think that would be very effective. Although, I do use my flexshaft on larger discs with great results! But not for high-production-style work.
Tumbling with an aggressive cut-down media should do the trick, save you time, increase your profits and save your hands!