Tumbling live ammo

Ironbar

Messages
2,361
Reactions
2,586
I'm probably going to take some heat for this, but I have officially crossed over into the camp that believes that tumbling live ammo is no big deal. The reason for this switch is the last two shipments of Greek HXP .30-06 I received from CMP.

Both batches were on the older side, especially the shipment from December. It was primarily 60's vintage, and while it had the usual age tarnish, it also had a somewhat tacky feel to it. As if sitting in one place for decades had attracted a muck to the outside of the cases. I'm probably being a mother hen to my pristine Garand, but I wasn't totally comfortable running it through. So I went searching for info, and ran across this piece posted a few years back on ar15.com:

Tumble live ammo Tumbler O' thruth EXTREME edition, 200hour torture test**UPDATE**fired rounds in OP - AR15.COM

This guy did an extreme torture test of tumbling live ammo for 205 hours. He used a microscope camera to record the pre and post test results on the powder itself. Well, I'll let you see what he came up with and decide for yourself.

Suffice to say, the HXP ammo I've tumbled is now clean as a whistle, and the tacky residue has been eliminated. I'm pretty sure they'll all go bang.
 
Will the powder granules inside the case breakdown with excessive tumbling and change the burn rate?
From the OP,

"Tumble live ammo Tumbler O' thruth EXTREME edition, 200hour torture test**UPDATE**fired rounds in OP - AR15.COM

This guy did an extreme torture test of tumbling live ammo for 205 hours. He used a microscope camera to record the pre and post test results on the powder itself. Well, I'll let you see what he came up with and decide for yourself. "
 
Messages
2,405
Reactions
557
Will the powder granules inside the case breakdown with excessive tumbling and change the burn rate?
If that were the case the military could never ferry ammo to the troops in the field via helicopter. What about air dropping it as well?


Tumbling finished ammo doesn't involve any real amount of time. Most that I know only do so for about 10-15 minutes max. If the brass was clean to begin with, just how dirty do you think it gets while loading? Lube and fingerprints are about it.
 
Messages
2,948
Reactions
2,182
You can tumble ammo... it's pretty common in the commercial setting, however the danger with tumbling live ammo is one cartridge can hit the primer of another hard enough to set it off. Sounds silly I know, but I've seen it happen. Then again, just putting ammo in bags can also cause the same thing to happen (seen that cause explosions, however no one got hurt..)
 
Messages
14
Reactions
1
So I'm wondering if rim-fire would be as stable as center-fire... I purchased 2100rds of the Federal bargain 22LR and it seems to have a waxy residue all over it. Would throwing this in a tumbler A) remove the waxy junk or B) blow up?
 
Messages
2,948
Reactions
2,182
That wax is a chemical metal preservative to keep the surface from oxidizing... unless it actually causes a problem, leave it.

Other thing you can do is take a rag, put a tiny amount of nail polish remover on it, and wipe the rounds down. (I MEAN TINY AMOUNT!!!)

In general, you're probably going to be ok tumbling rimfire... however just remember the main reason why most large caliber cartridges got away from rimfire was if you dropped one of the bigger rimfire rounds, they had a tendancy to go off. .22 has become mostly immune from that because of it's light weight.
 

UPCOMING EVENTS

Free Firearms Safety Course Webinar (I-1639 Compliant)
Virtual Webinar (Zoom). Registration Link in the course description.
Washington, USA
Rimfire Challenge Feb 13th @ DRRC
Douglas Ridge Rifle Club
27787 OR-224, Eagle Creek, OR 97022, USA
Project Appleseed
Douglas Ridge Rifle Club
27787 OR-224, Eagle Creek, OR 97022, USA
Albany Rifle & Pistol Club (ARPC) Gun Show
Linn County Expo Center
3700 Knox Butte Rd E, Albany, OR 97322, USA

LATEST RESOURCE REVIEWS

  • HighLine Firearms
    5.00 star(s)
    Great Vendor
    I have not been to the shop yet but have purchased from him online, and all I can say is PERFECT! You could not ask for a nicer, more helpful guy...
  • Paul A Martin Historical Guns
    5.00 star(s)
    Great shop, selection and atmosphere
    One of the better firearm shop experiences I’ve had, Paul is very patient and helpful. Definitely going to be a repeat customer even though it’s...
  • Adaptive Firing Solutions
    5.00 star(s)
    Great Service! A+
    Steve is a very nice guy and very easy to work with. I've done business with him a few times and will continue to.
  • Adaptive Firing Solutions
    5.00 star(s)
    Great guy!
    Steve is a great guy to deal with!
  • HighLine Firearms
    5.00 star(s)
    Nice Home Shop
    Had what I wanted at a good price. Messaged me when in stock.
Top Bottom