Brass Cleaning

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Wachsmann, Sep 23, 2013.

  1. Wachsmann

    Wachsmann Well-Known Member

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    So I have been cleaning my brass using a tumble for some time now. Years... I have always had the red or green residue from the tumbler media dust in the case. I don't thank it really effect the performance at all but it would be nice to have those bright clean cases looking like knew on the inside as well. So I have often wonder how the sonic cleaners compare to the stainless water/soap based tumbler. Any input would be appreciated. I'm thinking about making a purchase in a couple of months and would like to hear some input on the two Pros/Cons if any....Thanks...
     
  2. Mikecr

    Mikecr Well-Known Member

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    I don't see why it would be nice. The black carbon layer is 'nice' to me. It provides perfect seating forces, & maybe prevents corrosion.
    This, just opposite of bright shiny insides..
     

  3. digger11

    digger11 Well-Known Member

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    I have the stainless pins setup .It works amazing It is a pain in the butt. I usually use my 3 vibratory tumblers. Seems like I have at least one running all the time. I buy walnut media in 50 pound sacks,2 at a time.
    I don't know if I mentioned ,I shoot a lot.
     
  4. TXshooter

    TXshooter Well-Known Member

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    I have a cheap harbor freight rock tumbler ($40) with the stainless it's awesome. Brass looks new every time. Use to run a vibratory with media. It's nice to not have to clean primer pockets. SS media cleans them for me. To dry I just stick on the dry rack in my cloths dryer and turn on
     
  5. TimeOnTarget

    TimeOnTarget Well-Known Member

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    Please explain how STM is a pain in the butt? Walnut isnt?
     
  6. varmintH8R

    varmintH8R Well-Known Member

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    +1. I'm not anti-STM by any means, but if your key motivation is cleaning the inside of the case you put my reloading OCD to shame. Dump some powder in those cases and stick a bullet in the neck to keep it there, and no one will ever know the difference. :D
     
  7. TXshooter

    TXshooter Well-Known Member

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    Ha! I will say I am very OCD with my reloads but not to that point. It is nice to get the primer pockets cleaned, the inside is just extra
     
  8. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

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    until it starts flaking off like my 338 LM did after 10 firings and cleaning in vibrator cleaners. It was getting too thick and needed completely removed. Stainless Steel media was the only think that would cut it. It is a small thing I agree. But some sort cases by weight to get consistent case volume. I feel clean cases inside are the best way to keep case volume consistent.

    Just my way of looking at it in an effort to always produce ammo that is the same each time I load.

    Jeff
     
  9. Mikecr

    Mikecr Well-Known Member

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    But when you measure case volume(H20 capacity), you'll find no difference at all.
    You won't measure the carbon layer, nor flakes, on a scale either.
    It just makes no difference.
    The carbon layer is a good thing, and so is keeping cases dry.

    IMO taking case internals to squeaky clean is not reloading O.C.D..
    It's more like reloading A.D.D.
     
  10. Wachsmann

    Wachsmann Well-Known Member

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    Hum...:cool:....I can tell we have some interesting input. So the stainless will clean the inside to a shinny new look. What about the ultrasonic cleaners. Any input there. Also it probably want manner that the red residue is left behind but I though it may have some minor impact to the powder or possibally change how it burns or something like that. This I don't really know. But I just thought if the cases was completely clean it would be one less thing to question when keeping loads to a constant and making good repeatable ammo.
     
  11. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

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    This is exactly correct. And could contribute to why my virgin brass is very consistent to fired bras in both velocity tests across an Oehler and Magneto Speed V2. Any build up inside the case is an uncontrolled inconsistency. It may not be much, but all these little things add up and if you send some to past a mile in good conditions everything you can do to make ammo consistent is a plus in my book.

    As for a good thorough cleaning method. I have 2 vibrating cleaners with cob and hull media. A heated ultra sonic cleaner, and the STM stainless media cleaner. The STM is by far the best if you want clean brass in and out as well as the primer pockets. The STM is all I use these days.

    Jeff
     
  12. D Scott

    D Scott Well-Known Member

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    I have the tumbler with the stainless media, in the effort to be more OCD, I find this device saves me alot of time with brass prep, no need to clean the primer pockets, whole thing is perfectly clean and CONSISTENT . I find all they need is about -2hours or so in the tumbler . Tried the walnut vibrator that is a PIA, and does a poor job
    jump in and buy it you wont be sorry !

    Scott
     
  13. newmexkid

    newmexkid Well-Known Member

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    The walnut media doesn't clean the primer pockets completely. but it only takes one quick primer pocket cleaner twist to clean it up. I use walnut media with Berry's case cleaner and couldn't be happier. This is a small batch from yesterday. A timed 2 hours of cleaning. The picture doesn't do the brass justice.
     

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  14. RTK

    RTK Well-Known Member

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    I used to have a bad case of reloading OCD. Everything had to be perfect, concentric and shiny to boot. Over the years my OCD has waned and I have found that it was not necessary to go to the lengths that I had been.
    As long as I can keep my vertical spreads ranging in the .5-1 moa shooting bipod field conditions I am tickled pink (some might not be). That extra time I spent going to great lengths for ultimate cartridge perfection didn't really seem to pan out, not that certain minimums need to be met, but the extra miles I went were not necessary. Practicing consistent shooting technique and learning better wind calling will do more for me than keeping runout below .002. or making my brass look like new. I'm with mike now on leaving a little carbon inside the necks