How Much Noise Does a Tumbler Make?

Dec. 08, 2023

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Rubber Barrel Tumblers Are Quiet

If you want a quiet tumbler, purchase a small rotary tumbler with a soft rubber barrel. Their soft rubber barrels absorb the impact of the tumbling rocks and produce very little noise. When running with a barrel 2/3 full of rocks, they make about as much noise as giving a 1/2-full carton of orange juice a gentle shaking.

Magnetic Tumbler

Magnetic Tumbler

Plastic Barrel Tumblers Are Noisy!

Some inexpensive tumblers are made with hard plastic barrels. Imagine how much noise will occur if you shake a hard plastic barrel with rocks inside!

We purchased two of the most popular plastic-barrel tumblers and ran them to see how well they worked. The clatter was more than we could tolerate. I ran one in my garage and could not sleep in the bedroom above because of the nagging noise. One of our staff members tried one in his basement and said that he could hear the noise in his second-floor bedroom.

These inexpensive tumblers might last through a couple loads of rock but the plastic construction assures that they will break or wear out quickly. We recommend buying a tumbler with a sturdy frame and rubber barrel. They make less noise and will last for years with proper care.

Where to Run Your Rock Tumbler?

Most people run their Tumblex in the basement or in the garage where a little noise will not cause a problem. We have used small rubber-barrel tumblers in basements and garages of the homes where we have lived and could barely hear them in other parts of the house.

Does The Tumbler Need Oil?

Read the instruction manual provided with your tumbler to see if the motor or the bearings need occasional oiling. We have an article with photos that shows where we lubircate our Thumler's rotary tumblers.

The Noise is Coming From the Motor!

Most rotary tumbler motors run quietly if turned on without a barrel on the machine. However, some of the inexpensive tumblers with a plastic body and plastic motor housing can be very noisy - even when brand new.

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