Stories of life on our farm in Northwest Georgia where every day is an adventure in this beautiful spot that God has entrusted to our stewardship.

Friday, December 12, 2014

This Hobby Rocks!

After our trip to West Texas in August, I came home all fired up to revive an old hobby of mine--rock polishing.  All our family are rock hounds, and over the years we've collected tons (maybe literally!) of rocks out on the ranch.  We spent hours sorting them . . . and then we had to fly back to France and leave them there.  European baggage restrictions just didn't allow us to carry back suitcases full of rocks, but finally, we were there with a TRUCK!  Herb loaded boxes of my rocks into every nook and cranny, and we hauled them back home.

Here's my Lortone Rotary Tumbler, which tumbles two barrels at once.  This is my best rock polisher because the barrels are easy to close nice and tight with no leaks.

When I started polishing rocks back in September, I was in a hurry to get some done to show the grandkids, so I picked some of the few that we found already smoothed out.  Most West Texas rocks are pretty craggy, but with these I could skip the rough shaping and go straight to the next step.  These had just been tumbled with medium fine grit and rinsed well, ready for the pre-polish tumbling.

In order to see what they'll look like when they're finished, I took a sneak peek by getting them wet.  This is a good way to weed out ones that just aren't going to look like much.

I started out with a full tumbler, but by the time the rocks had tumbled a couple times--and I had removed ones with deep crevices that weren't going to polish well--the tumbler wasn't quite full enough.

So I added plastic pellets from a hobby shop to reach the required fill line.  You can see the water level in the center, not quite to the top of the pellets.  (I forgot to take a photo of the polishing medium, but there will be one in a future post.)

Here are the same rocks after the pre-polish . . .

. . . and a different view, showing one of my favorites at far right.

This is the final result showing some of the same rocks.  They aren't all there because I mixed them all together before I remembered to take the photo, but you can see some of the same ones.  They're smaller--and shinier!

I love bringing out the beauty that God has hidden in these chunks of rock.  They were rather plain and dull at first, but now they are a witness to the beauties of His Creation.  That's why this hobby rocks!

(Stay tuned for more posts about rock polishing and what you can do with the rocks once they're polished.)

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