If you’re interested in making unique cabochons, you need a cabbing machine. Cabochons are those round stones of diverse shapes which you see on rings or bracelets Almost all the pieces of jewelry we wear today have cabs.
You can’t make pieces of jewelry and not invest in a cabbing machine. This machine will help you in cutting, grinding, and polishing gemstones or other materials to make attractive cabochons.
So, every beginner or expert lapidarist needs the best cabbing machine in their tool kit. If you're a beginner, it'll help you to improve your skills. As for the professionals, a cabbing machine will help you to produce cabochons of any size or design. You can say goodbye to long hours of selecting pre-made cabs.
But the challenge is how to pick the best cabbing machine in the market. That’s why we present the top 7 cabbing machines for both the newbies and the pros. We also have other important sections about cabbing machines in this article.
Go ahead and check them out!
Need a quick choice? Check our top 3 recommendations!
Top 8 Best Cabbing Machines
1. CabKing 6” Cabbing Machine-Lapidary Rock Grinder Polisher
If you're looking for a cabbing machine for beginners and experts, the CabKing 6” is your best option. You can use this brand for grinding and polishing diverse cabochon materials without stress. It has all the necessary features that simplify the cabbing processes for all users.
CabKing 6” is suitable for every lapidarist because the machine is simple to use. It features two diamond grinding wheels and four-diamond resin wheels to ensure a stress-free lapidary process. Both types of wheels are electroplated to keeps your machine functional and attractive for a very long time.
Another feature that makes this cabbing machine a good choice is a direct-drive motor that produces a strong 1800rpm. The design of this motor is such that you don’t need pulleys or belts to start the machine and as such, you won’t need to spend money changing those parts.
There’s also the water system powered by a 30-watt water pump and the diamond-paste syringe that helps to perfect your final product perfect.
- Powered by a ¼HP direct-drive motor
- Accessory kit plus an information book
- 6 electroplated diamond wheels
- Suitable for grinding and polishing
- Suitable for many cabochon materials
2. Hi-Tech Diamond 8” Slant Cabber-: Lapidary Grinding & Polishing Machine
Here’s a good cabbing machine for lapidarist who prefers to sit while producing cabochons. You can use it to complete every required task in cabs production. It also comes with an accessory kit that contains everything you need for your work.
Hi-tech cabbing machine is suitable for grinding, shaping, and polishing of every kind of cabochon material. You can use it for metals, stones, synthetics materials, minerals, etc. The design is also impressive because you can travel with it. It is light, resistant to impact and rust.
The ball-bearing motor comes with different speed levels which you can adjust to suit any material you’re using. It offers a choice between 800rpm and 3,400rpm. So, it all depends on how fast you want to complete a process.
This cabbing machine also features a water reservoir which you can control with a valve that has an on/off function. It also comes with a full guide containing both visual and textual instructions on how to use the machine.
- An accessory kit with a diverse tool
- ¼hp ball bearing motor
- Variable speeds from 800rpm-3400rpm
- Water reservoir
- Instructional user manual
- Diverse for all kinds of material
3. Mini Table Saws DIY Jewelry Lapidary Equipment
If you're looking for a small cabbing machine that can handle small projects, this is your best choice. But note that it only cuts grinds and polishes small gemstones. So, don't expect it to work well for heavy-duty lapidary projects.
So, for all your DIY projects, use this cabbing machine. The shaft is flexible and you’ll also enjoy using the adjustable ruler while working. While using this machine, you get to decide on the speed level to use for each material. You can adjust the speed from 0rpm to 10,000rpm.
This machine operates quietly. It also has different wheels such as the fiber wheel, the grinding wheel plus a jade cutting disc. Moreover, you can use it on every kind of material and it handles every cabochon-making process effectively.
- Adjustable speed setting between 0-10,000rpm
- 2 blades for 30mm objects
- Perfect for every cabochon-making process
- Grinding and fiber wheels plus cutting disc
- 200 power motor, adjustable ruler, and 100cm shaft
4. 110V Jewelry Rock Polishing Buffer Bench Lathe and Polisher Machine
If you’re looking for a rock-polishing machine that requires little maintenance, this is the brand for you. You can use it to grind wood, agate, jade, beeswax, amber, etc. it also comes with many parts you can use to polish your handwork.
This polisher comes with already lubricated ball bearings to eliminate the need for frequent maintenance. Also, the enclosure of its motor is a dust-free material that can keep it neat and attractive always.
With 2 tapered spindles on its 1/4 "motor shafts, you attach buffing/grinding/polishing or cutting wheels off about 4" diameter. The speed is okay and the results are usually amazing because it comes with every necessary part that ensures a great outcome.
- Comes with fiber wheels
- Features a glass and stone cutting blade
- Can be used on a benchtop
- 2 spindles to accommodate up to 4 diameter wheels
- Can polish many materials
5. Hi-Tech Diamond 6” All-U-Need Lapidary Rock Mineral Grinding Polishing Machine
For a lapidarist who doesn't want the big blades, you can use this model from your renowned brand. This is a 6-inch cabbing machine that can complete all the processes of making cabochon. You can use it to grind and polish all kinds of cab materials. The flat-lap design makes it attractive and suitable for all levels of lapidary skills.
Just like the 8” model, this machine also has a ball motor offering variable speed levels of 800rpm - 3,400rpm. You can select the speed level you need depending on the material you’re using for the cabochon.
This machine comes with an accessory kit that has every tool for the entire process. The body is enclosed with a light-weight material that is resistant to impact and rust. With that kind of design, you can even travel with your machine.
- Flat lap design
- Comes with accessory kits with complete tools
- Ball-bearing ¼ hp motor offering 800rpm-3,400rpm speed levels
- Lightweight and resistant to rust and impact
- Suitable for both beginners and professionals
6. WUPYI Professional Gem Faceting Machine Jewel Angle Polisher
Here is one versatile machine you can use for many things involved in cabochon making. You can use it cut, engrave, drill, grind, polish, cleaning, and descaling. So for projects that you need to complete with stone, jewelry, wood carving, handicraft carving, gold, etc., this machine can handle them all.
The design of this machine is very impressive. It is light and comes in a rust-resistant enclosure to ensure longevity. Also, you can do all types of tasks with this machine with minimal noise. The best part is that you can adjust the manipulator up and down because of how flexible it is.
WUPYI Professional machine can help you to create all kinds of shapes such as multi-angle diamond, flat shapes, water droplets, egg-shaped cabs, round shapes, etc. The aluminum 6 inches plate plus the manipulators simplify the cabochon making processes even for beginner lapidarist.
- Suitable for multiple materials
- Comes with 6 inches' aluminum plates and a manipulator
- Produces a speed of 2800r/min
- Works with minimal noise
- Polishes different kinds of shapes
7. VEVOR Gem Faceting Machine 120W Jade Grinding Polishing Machine
For a lapidarist looking for a multi-functional cabbing machine, here is your chance to grab it. This brand offers everything you need to cut, engrave, drill, grind, polish, clean, and descale. It works well on stone, gold, dentures, jade, handicraft carving, wood carving, etc. We call it a one-for-all machine for both beginners and professional jewelry makers.
One thing to love about this lapidary polisher machine is that it can last very long. It is made from metal iron which we all know is very durable. The motor speed is from 0 to 1800e/min to ensure that you’ll continue working for as long as you need. Moreover, the motor operates with minimal noise and enables a quicker completion of projects.
The manipulator is another part to commend. You can easily adjust its grinding angle for more cutting precision. As for design, this machine is lightweight and even the water is designed for ease. With a drainpipe attached to the machine, you can say goodbye to the mess during polishing.
- Offers a motor speed of 1800 rpm
- Comes with an easy-to-adjust manipulator
- Offers multiple functions and versatile applications
- Lightweight design and water tank for easy polishing.
Cabbing Machine Buying Guide
Before deciding on a brand of cabbing machine, check out the following factors:
- The size of the machine
Cabbing machines come in different sizes. Some are large while some are small. Your choice of size should depend on your work area. If you have enough space, you can pick the large guys but if not, go for the smaller ones. They're all good.
- The design
There’re many designs of cabbing machines in the market. The one you prefer will determine how you use it. There're some machines that are suitable for those who prefer to stand while using them. There are some slant designs that you can use whilst sit down. So, when you determine your most productive position, you can pick the design that suits you.
- The features
Any cabbing machine that has user-friendly features is worth your dollars. Check out the features to see the ones that got all you need. For instance, if you’ll love to control the speed of your cabbing machine on different materials, look for a brand that can ensure it. Some lapidary machines offer speed-level control features while others don’t. So, take your time to check it.
- The size of the blade
Cabbing machines don’t have the same blade sizes. Two of the common sizes you can see on these machines are 6” & 8”. So, if you want to complete the job faster, use the larger wheels. Also, if both sizes are cutting the same stones, the 8 inches will definitely last longer for you than the 6 inches’ lapidary machines.
What does Cabbing mean?
Cabbing is the act of producing cabochons or cabs as many call them. It is a method of cutting, grinding, and polishing gemstones for making jewelry. If you have ever seen a piece of jewelry with a unique shape, you're looking at a cabochon.
You can find cabochons on bracelets, cuff links, necklaces, rings, etc. Some people make their own cabs at home using a cabbing machine. Other people sometimes, buy the pre-made ones. So the next time you admire that little stone on jewelry, know that you're looking at a cab made through cabbing.
The good thing about cabbing is that any creative person can do it with the right tool.
How to use a cabbing machine?
In this guide, we will use the CabKing as our case study in setting up a cabbing machine. The CabKing comes with different parts that you need to assemble such as:
- Stone trays which will sit on top of the cabbing machine
- Splash guards to be attached to the sides
- Hand rest
- 2 Side panels
- The flat lap with a diamond composite to grind the stone flat
- The felt wheel for polishing
- Fourteen hundred grit diamond compound
- Spacers for the wheels
- 2 wrenches to remove the wheels whenever there's a need for it
- Safety glasses to protect your eyes
- Plus, other parts that you can find in the accessory kits
Assembling the parts
- Start by deciding on the perfect position for your cabbing machine. Note that the CabKing 6” weighs 45lbs. Therefore, you must find a strong table or use a stable surface with enough space. But no matter where you set it up, make sure that there's adequate lighting.
- Pick the CabKing box and bring out the accessories.
- Place the unit on the table or surface ( crosscheck the parts against the lists)
- Place the machine’s clear stone trays on top of both side the hoods
- Put in the hand rests slowly into the drip pans
- Take the splash guards on each side of the two drip pans (adjust as you work depending on the splash.
- If you want, you can attach the side panels to your machine's hood. It will help to keep splash at a minimum. But you can also leave the panels to easily access the polishing pad or the diamond lap.
- Next, attach the tubing to the drip pans through its rear sprout. Use the spring clasp to cover the sprouts to make the connection stronger. Don’t forget to pull the tubes a little to check if it is firm.
- Bring an empty bucket and place the other end of the tubes in it or use a drain hole if possible. Make sure that the tube is pointing downwards to ensure a smooth draining movement from the pans.
- Locate the T-junction at the back of the motor, you’ll see an open hole where you’ll push in the tube. Tug on the tubing to check if it’s secure.
- Attach the end of the tube to the water pump. Fill a bucket with water and place the pump into it. Make sure the length of the tubing between the unit and the bucket is at least 6 feet. Afterward, cut the tubing.
- Connect the power cord of the motor to a power outlet. If you have a surge protector, use it. Don’t allow water to touch any electrical connection.
- Turn the water flow knobs to an off position, make sure that the splash guards are not touching the wheels, and then readjust the splash guards to a position that'll reduce water splash once the machine starts working.
- Connect the water pump to a surge protector connected to a power outlet. Then, set the flow rate as you want through the control knobs. Avoid the pump inside the bucket once the power is on
- Turn the machine on. You can put cardboard or cloth under the cabbing machine to reduce the occasional high-pitch sound as the machine works.
- Start grinding but ensure adequate water dripping to avoid dryness in the wheels.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Are cabbing machines costly?
Many factors determine the cost of every product. It can be the features, the quality, the brand, or even the model. That's the same thing you'll notice in cabbing machines. While some brands come cheap, others are very expensive.
So it all depends on what you want, your budget, and your skill level. But as for finding both the cheap and costly cabbing machines, the market has them all for you.
- Which cabbing machine is the best
It all depends on your requirement. If you’re looking for a machine that can only cut precious stones, and polish them, you can find them. But if you’re targeting a loaded machine with amazing features, you can get that too.
- What are cabochons?
Cabs are those finely cut and polished dome-shaped stones you see on jewelry. Cabochons are made from slabs of precious stones. To start the process, a lapidarist usually carves a shape on the gemstone or other materials and then use a trim saw to trim it out from the slab.
Afterward, he/she will use the cabbing machine to polish it into a cabochon. Apart from precious stones, most people make cabs using wood, synthetic stones, glasses, etc.
- Does it take long to make cabs?
It all depends on the material really. If the material of your choice is hard, you'll spend more time making a cabochon. For instance, cutting and trimming material to get the shape you carved on it can take time.
If that material is hard, you can't finish that fast. But if you're working on a soft material, you'll spend lesser time. After getting the shape, you'll still have to wait for one hour before using a cabbing machine. So, do the math!
- Will I get a user manual with a cabbing machine?
That should be the ideal thing for every manufacturer to do. Some cabbing machines we've seen so far comes with a user manual to guide you. At least, you can find detailed instructions in setting up the machine. If the manual comes with pictures, you're going to set it up faster. So, we recommend you check for the brands with users’ manuals when selecting.
Every lapidarist whether a beginner or a professional jewelry maker needs the best cabbing machine. It’ll help you to improve on the craft and also produce lots of designs and shapes using diverse cabochon materials.
We have taken our time to review the best seven cabbing machine brands in the industry. Each product is unique, versatile, and functional. While some brands seem to be on the high side, you can still find others that offer lots of functionalities and features.
Other brands in this review also have amazing features that ensure a smooth cabochon making experience. So, pick the best one that suits your requirements and budget.