Brass Cleaning

For those who like to roll their own.

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ET-Ret
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#31

Post by ET-Ret » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:21 am

Wonder who has the best stainless pins for the Harbor Freight tumbler. I got one today but have not taken it out of the box.
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PBR
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#32

Post by PBR » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:29 am

ET-Ret wrote:Wonder who has the best stainless pins for the Harbor Freight tumbler. I got one today but have not taken it out of the box.
Et-ret
There is a guy on facebook (has a site will try to find it) that sells chips instead of the pins. Many seem to like them much better, I have some along with pins but have not tried them as no brass to clean right now. They should clean the primer pockets better plus no getting stuck in case opening.





edited: https://www.facebook.com/southernshinetumblers
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ET-Ret
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#33

Post by ET-Ret » Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:54 pm

Thanks for the reply I will check them out and repost.
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#34

Post by AndyC » Mon Apr 30, 2018 2:19 pm

Although I've tumbled brass in various dry media for decades I'm no expert in what is best.

However, from what I have seen through researching others' use, these seemed to be the general norms:

1. Walnut shell/lizard bedding is most efficient at crud-removal and quickly results in clean yet non-sparkly brass (this is what I use).

2. Crushed corn-cob media (with a capful of an additive such as Nu Finish liquid car polish) seems to work on the finer polishing to get that more sparkly look but takes a lot longer to get heavy crud gone.

3. Some folks run their brass through walnut media first to get the crud off then drop the brass into corn-cob after to get the finer polish - others mix walnut and corn-cob media into the same bowl to do everything in one step.

Me, I'll be trying the latter - getting some corn-cob media and Nu Finish polish and putting that in with my walnut lizard bedding.
Last edited by AndyC on Mon Apr 30, 2018 6:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#35

Post by SIGFan43 » Mon Apr 30, 2018 3:01 pm

When I was reloading back in the 1970s-1990s, I had a Lortone Rock Tumbler, and used crushed walnut hulls with jeweler's rouge mixed in with the hulls. I don't remember where I got the jeweler's rouge in a bottle. You could also buy the hulls with jeweler's rouge already mixed into them online or at gun shows. About 1995, I sold my Dillon progressive press, all my dies, etc., to my neighbor in Arkansas, because my shoulder was starting to bother me. That's what can happen if you load ammo every night and shoot it up on the weekends. :lol:
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#36

Post by mr surveyor » Mon Apr 30, 2018 5:01 pm

I'm still using my old "business" purchased small ultra-sonic cleaner from 1983 ... deprime, clean and let dry.
I don't care a bit about "shiny" - just clean, inside and out.

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Re: Brass Cleaning

#37

Post by puma guy » Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:41 pm

AndyC wrote:Although I've tumbled brass in various dry media for decades I'm no expert in what is best.

However, from what I have seen through researching others' use, these seemed to be the general norms:

1. Walnut shell/lizard bedding is most efficient at crud-removal and quickly results in clean yet non-sparkly brass (this is what I use).

2. Crushed corn-cob media (with a capful of an additive such as Nu Finish liquid car polish) seems to work on the finer polishing to get that more sparkly look but takes a lot longer to get heavy crud gone.

3. Some folks run their brass through walnut media first to get the crud off then drop the brass into corn-cob after to get the finer polish - others mix walnut and corn-cob media into the same bowl to do everything in one step.

Me, I'll be trying the latter - getting some corn-cob media and Nu Finish polish and putting that in with my walnut lizard bedding.
I used walnut shell with Nu-finish to clean up a couple thousand .30 M1 cases that had been submerged during Allison and sat for for years after drying. They had green and black on much of them. On the worst hulls some discoloration remained, but they were clean. The ones with just green came out shiny. I used the large Harbor Freight vibrator and HF Walnut Hulls.
http://www.texaschlforum.com/viewtopic. ... or#p766252
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#38

Post by strogg » Tue May 01, 2018 8:10 am

I have another upvote for walnut shells. That's what I use with a dash of Klasse All-In-One (https://www.autogeek.net/klasseallinone.html). I mix in the polish well so it doesn't just clump up. Afterwards, all the brass is nice and shiny and feels slick.

Before dumping it into the tumbler, though, I will rinse off any brass that hit the dirty ground in a solvent solution I make (HCl-based Lysol toilet bowl cleaner, dish soap, and lots of water). It removes the caked on dirt/grime and deoxidizes the brass. Just a quick 5 minute rinse in a bucket is all you need. Just let it air-dry in a cardboard box or a bunch of paper towels, and it's good to go for the walnut media.

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Re: Brass Cleaning

#39

Post by oohrah » Tue May 01, 2018 8:24 pm

I just tried adding some Flitz to my walnut shells (Harbor Freight tumbler). Wow, the results are amazing, like brand new. And I shoot black powder in my reloads.
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#40

Post by AndyC » Thu May 03, 2018 11:13 am

^^^ Very nice feedback :thumbs2:

I wanted photographic evidence before the corn-cob/Nu-Finish arrived, so I'd run some cases in walnut-only for 2 hours, removed 3 cases as samples to photograph them and ran the rest for another 2 hours (so 4 hours total) and pulled 3 of those to photograph also.

I got my corn-cob media and Nu-Finish polish yesterday evening, so I made the ratio about 1/3rd corn-cob to 2/3rd walnut-shells and a capful of polish and ran the remaining shells for 2 hours. I ended up with this:

Image

Next I'll be doing 2 and 4 hrs in the corn/walnut/polish medium only.
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#41

Post by Beiruty » Thu May 03, 2018 12:54 pm

It takes 90mins max in SS wet wash to get like new results.
I use only Car Wash and Wax (Meguire's) and Very hot water.
I also switched from SS Pins to SS shreds.
I dry on old beach towel and no spots on the cases, and said cases do not get tarnished with time.
https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipP ... 5RV3lLSDJR
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#42

Post by AndyC » Thu May 03, 2018 1:01 pm

That does look absolutely outstanding, but how long does it take the brass to dry? Asking because I like to start reloading my cleaned brass right away.
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#43

Post by Beiruty » Thu May 03, 2018 1:36 pm

AndyC wrote:That does look absolutely outstanding, but how long does it take the brass to dry? Asking because I like to start reloading my cleaned brass right away.
If you deprime before you wet wash, it would dry fast. Still I hate to see water hides in the primer pocket. So either I leave the brass overnight to dry or if I want to load right away. I have the FA "food dryer" style dryer. 20 to 30 mins and they are bone dry.
Get a large food dryer from garage sale or online and use large trays to spread the brass. It will go quick.
I can dry 500 9mm cases or so at the same time.
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Re: Brass Cleaning

#44

Post by oohrah » Fri May 04, 2018 10:43 am

Beiruty wrote:
AndyC wrote:That does look absolutely outstanding, but how long does it take the brass to dry? Asking because I like to start reloading my cleaned brass right away.
If you deprime before you wet wash, it would dry fast. Still I hate to see water hides in the primer pocket. So either I leave the brass overnight to dry or if I want to load right away. I have the FA "food dryer" style dryer. 20 to 30 mins and they are bone dry.
Get a large food dryer from garage sale or online and use large trays to spread the brass. It will go quick.
I can dry 500 9mm cases or so at the same time.
Since I load black powder, I wash my brass with hot soapy water first (Dawn dishwashing), rinse in a colander, then oven dry at 175F for a couple hours to make sure nooks and crannies are dry.. Then walnut/flitz tumble. I do not deprime first. Used to, but doesn't seem to make any difference.
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