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How clean is the inside of brass supposed to be after tumbling?

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by zippygaloo, Feb 25, 2012.

  1. zippygaloo

    zippygaloo Oregon Member

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    I just tumbled some 9mm brass in crushed walnut (lizard litter) media with 1 cap full of NuFinish polish for 2 hours. I left the spent primers in the case. The outside of the cases look great, a bright pale yellow however the insides don't look as nice. Here is my question...

    1. Are the inside of the cases supposed to look a nice as the outside of the cases after tumbling? Are there an ill effects if it's still dirty when reloaded?
     
  2. unklekippy

    unklekippy In The Mountains Near Sprague River Well-Known Member

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    I let my brass tunble for at least 8 hours, no matter what caliber. There should be no ill effects at all from what you are describing. I like the brass to shine inside and out. Usually 12-18 hours, but an 8 hour minimum for me. Always deprime after tumbling. Kip.
     
  3. zippygaloo

    zippygaloo Oregon Member

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    When I de-prime after tumbling, how do I get the primer pockets clean, especially if I'm going to be de-priming and re-priming in one station on a turret press?

    Also, what will happen if a few granules of walnut are mistakenly left in the case when it's charged with powder?
     
  4. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    i've never had the insides shine like the outside,but then I"ve never tumbled for more than about 5 hours.
    the primer pockets do not get clean when tumbled,at least none of mine ever have.So I deprime after tumbling.
    I deprime them all,clean them all,then prime them all IF I"m going to clean pockes,which I seldom do. top accuracy shooters do ALL the steps every time,. me, not so much and all my ammo goes bang.
    a few granules of DRY media won't hurt a thing.If moist it could mess up the powder ignition.be sure to run the tumbler without brass for at least ten minutes to mix the Nufinish in well.
     
    evltwn and (deleted member) like this.
  5. Jammer Six

    Jammer Six North Greenlake, Seattle New Member

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    I get inside and out shiny. It's easier to inspect, it's easier to see powder, and most of all, it's easier to know that you have all the powder out and on the scale when you check a charge.

    And everyone knows that shiny ammo is more accurate. :D

    The Real Man's Guide To Tumbling Brass: Welcome
     
  6. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    Tumbling brass in "Lizzard Litter" or ground up "Iowa Toilet Paper" (ground corn cob) will never clean the inside of the case or the primer pockets like the Stainless Steel pin media. That's just the way it is.

    I switched over a year ago to the stainless pin media and have no plans to ever look back. I get cases that are as clean and pretty as the day they originally came out of the factory.

    As I see it, I don't have to worry how much carbon buildup I have inside the case that might diminish the case volume, no matter how little. With a nice shiny INSIDE, I can see any beginning failures like the "stretch ring" that everyone else has to "fish for" with a bent paper clip. Primer Pockets don't need any attention at all other than a new primer.

    I find that the stainless pins even make ugly milsurp brass look great. Even the annealing marks are cleaned off.

    For the little bit of time it takes to dry the cases the end result is well worth it. I trim and sort after a few minutes shake on a big towel and then let dry overnight before loading.
     
  7. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    I've noticed factory once fired comes out of the tumbler cleaner inside than some of my twice fired brass. Factory powder may be cleaner burning than what I used? 9mm and .38 don't get as clean inside as .45, not as much room for the media to move around inside in the smaller calibers. I'm only using walnut, for about six hours. I always deprime after cleaning. I always try to TAP_TAP every round on the bench just before charging to get little bits of burnt powder, or anything else, out of the shell.

    In the intro to reloading in the Speer14 book it states you don't even need to tumble/polish.?. I like the idea of shiney brass though.

    One other thing, mixing some handgun calibers doesn't work so well in the tumbler. 9mm and .38 do well together, but 9mm and .38 will fit inside .45, etc. Check to make sure when you're tumbling a mixture of calibers they don't fit inside one another.

    Mike
     
  8. Key-Hay

    Key-Hay North Carolina Active Member

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    Left my tumbler running for 31 hours once. Needed sun glasses to look at the brass!
     
  9. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    But did you take out the same number of pieces as what you started with? ;);)
     
  10. motoman98

    motoman98 Gresham, OR Active Member

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    The longer you run your machine, the sooner you'll be buying another.
    Ultra "pretty" brass shoots as well as not-so-pretty brass shoots as well as down right ugly brass....hummm!
    But, my tumbler still looks like NEW.....TIC lmao
    and Deadshot, where do you go and buy a 40yo "tumbler".
    The newer vibrator cleaners I've seen, have a hard time making it 5, yes FIVE years if you run them alot.
     
  11. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    Hmm. If this is the rule then I guess I have a defective one. My tumbler is almost 40 years old, is used weekly, and still works flawlessly. It looks great too.
     
  12. Key-Hay

    Key-Hay North Carolina Active Member

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    Not sure...I never count.

    I did think there was something wrong with my tumbler cause all the brass clumped up on one side and didn't get very clean. Turns out the tumbler doesn't like low levels of media.
     
  13. FarmerTed1971

    FarmerTed1971 Portland, Oregon, United States Well-Known Member

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    I tumble for 2-3 hours, with spent primers in. Any longer is useless IMHO. I've never had a problem with a FTF. I personally don't care if my rounds look like factory.

    I reload primarily for plinking so I don't worry about the pocket being nice and clean. If you are worried about it then tumble again or dress the hole with various doodads before repriming. The inside does not need to be beautiful. It will shoot fine.
     
  14. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    You're supposed to polish brass? And here I thought the goal was to polish the inside of my tumbler, LOL. :)

    Please be aware that Nu Finish and other similar products have silicon in them and then decide if you want that in your cases.

    I use 3M Fast Cut which is water based. I get it at an auto paint supply store. Auto body shops can't risk having silicons or waxes in their buffing compounds or it will for sure migrate into a paint job and cause fish eyes.

    As for the stainless pins, Deadshot2 has me convinced to try some. If I don't like them, he's going to get a package in the mail, LOL.
     
  15. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    OOPS. just discovered I left the tumbler on all night,and GUESSS WHAT? the insides are darned near as shiny as the outsides,using walnut and NUFinish. I may just re think this 12 hour tumbling idea ! I like em !!
     
  16. PaulZ

    PaulZ Oregon City Active Member

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    I believe I put too many hulls in one load of .30-06 and walnut shells; they are clean as a whistle but brush finish!
     
  17. PaulZ

    PaulZ Oregon City Active Member

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    My friend,, as the geeks say, I am "ROTFLMAO" Where did you get that wimpy mixer? mine is steel and 40 years old:p If I can get it out of the shed and find enough brass... Oh, The "Dude language" is accurate and hilarious, reminds me of some neighbors we had; late at night they would scream "FOCK DUDE" at each other in various intonations until LEO got there:laugh:thanks for the memories.
     
  18. deadshot2

    deadshot2 NW Quadrant WA State Well-Known Member

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    Isn't amazing how conservative the younger generation has become. Everyone is named "Dude" and the "F-Word" is all they need for verb, adverb, adjective, etc. They certainly conserve on words and names that way.
     
  19. FarmerTed1971

    FarmerTed1971 Portland, Oregon, United States Well-Known Member

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    LMaO!!
     
  20. PaulZ

    PaulZ Oregon City Active Member

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    They do indeed; in a few generations it will be a tonal lanquage like chinese... BTW those clowns mostly used FOCK like the old joke: No, dos fokkers was flyin Messerschmitts!
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2012