Koda

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Total beginner here but I seem to be missing this from my reading, do you clean the case before or after you deprime/resize? Is cleaning necessary if your reusing your brass you fired or it it meant more for the cases people pick up off the ground at ranges that probably have mud or dirt inside the case?
 
Cleaning before running thru the dies make the dies last longer. Best to get a depriming die, clean and then resize and so on. I do a light clean then size and then clean using stainless pins and wet tumbler to get the primer pocket and inside looking like brand new. If you dont want to get that picky just wash it then deprime/size and so on, I did it that way when I first started. Just make sure the primer pocket is clear of gunk (flash hole mainly) maybe even get a tool to clean them by hand. Wont be the prettiest but who cares......
 

CLT65

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Does the inside of the case need cleaning to remove powder residue?


Not necessarily. Like I mentioned in another thread recently, when I started loading back in the '80s, it seemed that most people (that I knew of) didn't own tumblers or case cleaners. It was easy to tell if someone's ammo was reloads by the look of the cases and the carbon on the case necks. Tumblers were more of a luxury. Nowadays everyone thinks they are an absolute necessity. Wash your brass with a little dish soap and maybe some lemishine if you want shiny, and it will be fine. If it's dirty at all, best to wash before sizing.

Everyone does it differently, and whatever works for you, but the way I do it is I wash my brass before sizing, and let it dry. Then I size using RCBS case lube. I like the RCBS lube because it's water soluble and rinses right off. Then I throw it into the wet tumbler because I like it nice and shiny. :)
 
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I deprime before wet tumbling with SS pins and Dawn Dish Soap and Lemi-Shine. This gives me consistently clean brass for the methods I use in reloading.

As was shared earlier, everyone has their own process. I started dry-tumbling with walnut shells, but read the lead deposited in the dust of the shells can be inhaled, so I switched to wet tumbling and use gloves.
 

Koda

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Thanks for the replies, very useful info. The dies I ordered deprimed and sized in one pass so I didnt know there were deprime only dies. It didnt make sense to me to size dirty brass, but it also didnt make sense to me to not have the primer pocket and flash hole clean as well.

It makes sense to me to deprime, clean and resize so I ordered a RCBS Universal deprime die. Im nearly ready to start my first reloads I might clean this first run with the old primer in, then decap and resize.

I dont have a case cleaning system but a quick google is telling me there are DIY methods. Maybe later on I can worry about shiny polished brass but for now all I need is clean, if anyone has a diy method Im all ears cause Ive spent my allowance getting the press and everything else.
 

CLT65

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Sounds like you're well on your way with a good grasp of what to do. My only DIY cleaning method is one that I mentioned in another thread recently, and similar to the bucket method in your link. I showed it to a friend a while back, just to show him that he didn't really NEED a tumbler. Then I gave him one of my old tumblers that I don't use anymore.

I put the brass into a bin that fits in the sink. A little bit of Dawn and a sprinkle of Lemishine, stir it around for a couple minutes, then rinse it off and dry. Unless the brass is really bad, it comes out OK. If it was fairly clean to begin with, it will look great. One note though, consider wearing gloves. There's a trace amount of lead on the fired brass, and the Lemishine makes the water slightly acidic. No point in exposing yourself to lead any more than you have to.
 
Thanks for the replies, very useful info. The dies I ordered deprimed and sized in one pass so I didnt know there were deprime only dies. It didnt make sense to me to size dirty brass, but it also didnt make sense to me to not have the primer pocket and flash hole clean as well.

It makes sense to me to deprime, clean and resize so I ordered a RCBS Universal deprime die. Im nearly ready to start my first reloads I might clean this first run with the old primer in, then decap and resize.

I dont have a case cleaning system but a quick google is telling me there are DIY methods. Maybe later on I can worry about shiny polished brass but for now all I need is clean, if anyone has a diy method Im all ears cause Ive spent my allowance getting the press and everything else.


I found on the web's a while ago a nice recipe for cleaning brass. Especially if you don't have a media or wet tumbler.

I always clean the brass when i pick it up. Running water and a drop of dish soap in a dish/bucket. As mentioned it gets dirt on it when it hits the ground and can damage the dies if it's too bad.

Then lube and size/deprime the brass.

THEN I make a concoction that I found on the web a while back, and throw the brass in it for about 20-30 mins agitating occasionally to clean the lube and gunk off the freshly deprimed brass.......
- 1 Cup vinegar
- 4 Cups water
- 1 Tbls salt
- 1 Tbls dish soap

Remove and RINSE WELL under water.

Then throw them in a wet tumbler and let them go for about 2 hours with lemishine and a few drops of dish Dawn soap.

They come out looking like new brass.

Just pulling them out of the vinegar/water solution comes out really clean. But my OCD gets the best of me as the primer pocket is still "dirty".
 
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i dry tumble before de-priming for 3 reasons. 1, because the de-prime pin will knock out any media in the flash hole. 2, because i have a lyman prep station that cleans the primer pockets in a quarter of a second. and 3, i'm old and set in my ways:mad:. all i've read so far are good advice that i would consider if i were just starting out. good luck in your new endeavor, and don't get overwhelmed or discouraged. you can do it with confidence with just a little hands on and little help from some of the folks on here;).
 

Koda

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This forum has been super helpful... the way reloaders step up for helping someone new has been a positive experience to witness and receive. The thing about this ammo crunch is getting set up has been a slow process finding supplies which has given me time to read on the steps and different methods while just finding what I need, and waiting on the shipping. I -think- Im there as soon as my case trimmer in hopefully this week I should be ready to roll with a minimal setup though Im trying to learn what I need to get a head start to maximize my accuracy from the start, and that brings more questions I already have another thread. Im confident I'll get there and this will be a fun and good addition to my shooting and hunting, I can see it expanding to other calibers.
 
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I have found that I punch the primers first and then clean the brass in my sonic cleaner. I then let them dry and polish them in my tumbler. When I am done the brass looks like new cleaned inside and out. It's a little more work but I feel it worth the effort.
 

brucekr

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Bought a dry tumbler on here from Camohunter, and when we met up he recommended cutting up a dryer sheet into a few patches and putting them in with the brass to cut down on the dust. Works like a champ.
 

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