Dry or Wet Tumble Pros and Cons


Tags: Dry Tumbling, Vibratory Finishing, Wet Tumbling

There are two main choices when it comes to vibratory finishing, wet or dry processing. Almost all vibratory finishing is done via a wet application, but both applications have their pros and cons. Using the right application is imperative when it comes to making sure your project is successful.

Wet Tumbling Pros

In general, wet tumbling has quite a few benefits and very few restrictions. Almost all types of media are able to be used with a wet application, including: ceramic, plastic, synthetic, porcelain, and several others. The most obvious benefit is that the part usually ends up looking more clean and polished than a part that was dry tumbled. When you combine water with a vibratory compound, it cleans the part and keeps the media from building up soils. The wear on the media is less, which will save the customer money in the long run.

Wet Tumbling Cons

Wet tumbling will almost certainly create a waste you will need to treat. Regardless of whether you are using a closed system, pumping it out or putting it down the drain. It’s important you’re aware of the costs involved in each method.

Dry Tumbling Pros

Dry tumbling applications are not all that common in vibratory finishing. While any media style is possible, most are not recommended. Usually synthetic or non-abrasive media is to help control dust. There is no cost for compound or waste that you have to consider, which will offset the higher costs of the media.

Dry Tumbling Cons

As implied before, the media that is required for dry tumbling is quite expensive. The dry process necessitates specially engineered formulas that will produce minimal dust and break down slowly. Dry tumbling is oftentimes extremely noisy and will require workers in the area to wear hearing protection.

As you can see, it makes sense why the wet tumbling application is more popular.  Regardless, the dry application should never be ruled out and is a useful alternative in some specialty cases. It’s important to know your options when it comes to vibratory finishing.

At CLM Vibetech, we have been manufacturing the industry’s best and most reliable finishing machines for over 50 years. We have the experience and knowledge necessary to make machines that are rugged and efficient. Please stop by our website or call us today for a quote!