Rock tumblers are fantastic inventions. With very little effort required on your part, they can transform rocks and stones into beautiful gemstones, ornaments and pieces of jewellery, making perfect Christmas presents and gifts for your friends and family.
While rock tumblers are by no means a high maintenance piece of kit (in fact, you can usually just press the on button and leave them to it), they do often run for weeks at a time.
For this reason, the location of your rock tumbler is a decision that requires some thought and, even if you don’t care, it’s likely your housemates will!
Here’s what to consider when it comes to choosing the location of your rock tumbler:
Electricity & Water Source
You would think this goes without saying, but it’s remarkable how many people fail to realise they will need an electric and water source to run their tumbler.
Of course, to power the motor you will need electricity, while a water source is needed to load the barrel.
An extension cord should only be used if completely necessary, and you can get away with transporting water to and from your barrel, but it’s a lot more effort.
To make your rock tumbling experience easier and more enjoyable, an electricity and water source should be up there on your list of priorities.
Away From Pets & Children
Despite being relatively safe, rock tumblers are still pieces of machinery and they can do some damage.
Not only is a child or pet stumbling across and playing with your rock tumbler likely to ruin your batch, it’s also a little dangerous.
Ensure pets and small, curious children don’t have access to your tumbler and if they want to see it (we are more referring to the children here!), ensure that they are supervised.
Not too Cold
As your rocks will be tumbling in a barrel of water, it’s essential that your tumbler doesn’t drop below freezing, especially for long periods of time.
If you live in a climate where the temperature often drops below freezing, or even if you plan on running your rock tumbler in the winter and don’t want to take any chances, it’s best to run it in a heated room, or at least one which is shielded from the elements!
Away From Neighbours & Family Members
Rock tumblers can unfortunately be very noisy. While you can reduce some of the noise by investing in a tumbler with a rubber barrel instead of plastic (as plastic barrels will literally sound like a rock banging on plastic repeatedly), they can still make quite a racket.
You don’t want the tumbler running in your room, living room, or anywhere that you want to chat or spend some quiet time!
While many people don’t mind the noise and can even get used to it, be mindful of other people around – be that neighbours, family members or housemates. It’s best to run your tumbler where a little noise won’t be too much of an issue.
Somewhere it’s OK to Get Messy!
Rock tumblers can also be a little messy. While they’re not quite as destructive as other hobbies (finger painting, we’re looking at you!), a little mess is bound to happen due to the muddy water, rocks and grit.
Investing in a good-quality tumbler will ensure minimal leakage, but accidents to happen. Let’s just say, if it leaks you want to be sure it won’t be all over your new bright white living room carpet!
Where Should You Run it?!
So, we know now what to look out for, but where does this leave? After all, we’ve pretty much excluded the garden, living room, kitchen, bathroom and well, everywhere else.
Your best bet is a basement, garage or at a stretch, a closet. These areas are warm, sheltered, and a little noise won’t disturb anyone.
Be careful if you are running your tumbler upstairs that it doesn’t disturb the people downstairs, and ensure you let your family know before you start to run your tumbler – waking up in the night to noises coming from the basement is never fun!