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Books About Rock Tumbling

Quite a few books have been written about rock tumbling since the hobby became popular in the United States during the 1950s. Most of these books have gone out of print and copies are really hard to find.

The best book that is currently in print (and the best book of all time, in our opinion) is Steve Hart's Modern Rock Tumbling. It covers just about every aspect of rock tumbling, from collecting and preparing your rough to polishing and burnishing.

Here is a list of all of the rock tumbling books in our library. If you know of any others please let us know at questions@rocktumbler.com.
Modern Rock Tumbling

Modern Rock Tumbling
The only complete and up-to-date guide to tumble polishing rocks and stones: Steve Hart, Little Red Store Publishing, 2008. I knew a lot about rock tumbling before I read this book and know a lot more now! Get your copy.
Gemstone Tumbling, Cutting, Drilling and Cabochon Making

Gemstone Tumbling, Cutting, Drilling and Cabochon Making
This is an excellent book, authored by people who have spent a lifetime making beautiful things from rocks. It explains, through the use of expert descriptions and photos, the basics of rock tumbling and offers numerous tips that only experienced people can provide. Get your copy.
How to Tumble Polish Rocks into Gems
How to Tumble Polish Rocks into Gems
Secrets of the Pros Revealed: Edward E. Smith, 1995. (This book has been published in three editions between 1995 and 2005. At least ten printings have been done. It is a very technical presentation of the rock tumbling process - not really for the beginner. The author, Edward E. Smith, is the inventor of the Vibra-Sonic and Mini-Sonic rock tumblers and inventor of Vibra Dry polishing compounds.)
Gem Tumbling and Baroque Jewelry Making
Gem Tumbling and Baroque Jewelry Making
A Guide for Amateur Tumblers: Arthur Earl Victor and Lila Mae Victor, Gem Guides Book Company, 1962. (This book has been published in at least 25 editions since 1962 and is probably the best-selling tumbling book of all time. The content is a little dated but the basic information is still very good.)
The Complete Book of Rock Tumbling
The Complete Book of Rock Tumbling
Christopher S. Hyde and Richard A. Matthews, Chilton Book Company, 1977. This book includes information about both rotary and vibratory tumblers. It is stronger than most other tumbling books on the topics of tumbling slabs, creating from preform shapes and making baroque stone jewelry.
How to Tumble Polish Gemstones and Make Tumbled Gem Jewelry

How to Tumble Polish Gemstones and Make Tumbled Gem Jewelry
Jerome Wexler, Gem Guides Book Company, 1977. Lots of good information about selecting rough and preparing it for the tumbler. Plus a lot of good instructive information about the rock tumbling process.
Rock Tumbling

Rock Tumbling
From Stones to Gems to Jewelry: Carolyn Meyer and Jerome Wexler, William Morrow and Company, 1975. Basic information about rock tumbling along with findings and making wire-wrap jewelry from tumbled stones.
Lapidary Barrel Tumbling
Lapidary Barrel Tumbling
Joe Warzin (A Rock Hound), Warzin's Rock Shop, 1971. We thought that this book was excellent. Very practical and informative. The author really understands rocks and rock tumbling. After Modern Rock Tumbling, by Steve Hart, this is the second best book on rock tumbling that we have read. Unfortunately, this book is out of print and used copies are really hard to find.