Tumble Finishing

Tumble finishing, also known as tumbling or rumbling, is a technique for smoothing and polishing a rough surface on relatively small parts. Metal tumbling is used to burnish, deburr, clean, radius, de-flash, descale, remove rust, polish, brighten, surface harden, prepare parts for further finishing, and break off die cast runners. The process is fairly simple: a horizontal barrel is filled with the parts which is then rotated. Variations of this process usually include media, water, or other lubricants. As the barrel is rotated the material rises until gravity causes the uppermost layer to landslide down to the other side. The barrel may also have vanes, typically made of rubber, which run along the inside of the barrel. As the barrel turns the vanes catch and lift the parts, which eventually slide down or fall.