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Wet Tumbling - I am a convert.

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by CrossHairs, Dec 21, 2015.

  1. CrossHairs

    CrossHairs Tigard Active Member

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    Like a lot of reloaders, I have been using corn media for years. Just recently, I discovered the world of the Frankford Arsenal Wet Tumbler with the steel pin media.

    All I can say is.....why? Why did I know know about this sooner?.......I took some FC military brass that I've had for a while that was tumbled in corn media and then ran it through the steel pin treatment today for the first time....comparing some brass I had already loaded with the newly tumbled stuff and the difference is remarkable.

    The brass feels smooth to the touch and all of the dirt from around the neck (AR rounds) has been removed. Primer pockets are clean and the inside of the cases even looks clean.

    Looking forward to cleaning up some 9mm ready for it's next load. I can bet that the loading on the Dillon will not leave a ton of dirty residue that will lock up the primer delivery system next time.

    Happy Reloader!
     
  2. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    I absolutely love it too! You don't even need the pins if you aren't concerned with primer pockets or the inside of case.
     
  3. CrossHairs

    CrossHairs Tigard Active Member

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    Good to know, but I think I like the clean pockets. As noted, my Dillon primer delivery gets a little funky after about 1000 rounds. The dust from the primer pocket stops the slide from going all the way back. I love the Dillon, but that friction slide is the weakest point in the system when you introduce a little dust.

    Seems like cleaning thoroughly will stop that from happening.
     
  4. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Do I need a tumbler?

    Will it work with a vibrating "tumbler"?
     
  5. CrossHairs

    CrossHairs Tigard Active Member

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    You'll need a proper wet tumbler setup. I did some homework before buying and everything I read said what I suspected....it's not a good idea.

    I saw somewhere on you tube a guy was using an old cement mixer! I wonder if the internal blades where still in there!?
     
  6. ConcreteJungle

    ConcreteJungle Eugene Well-Known Member

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    i'm still an avid ultrasonic user but absolutely willing to listen to the benefits and do a comparison.
     
    evltwn likes this.
  7. PiratePast40

    PiratePast40 Willamette Valley Well-Known Member

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    In some circles it's called the Frankford Arsenal Rotary Tumbler, or FART.

    There are sales once in awhile. I was able to get one from Cabelas' on sale plus had a $20 off coupon and free shipping. It's wrapped and under the tree.

    Have been using the Harbor Freight twin tumbler for about a year and really like it. Yes, it still takes time, but there's no dust for breathing and getting all over the place.
     
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  8. CrossHairs

    CrossHairs Tigard Active Member

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    I am so using that acronym from now on.......

    Yeah got mine slightly reduced too.
     
    jluck likes this.
  9. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    I go without pins for bulk brass that I'm putting away for later. Pins before reloading or stuff I know will get reloaded soon.
     
  10. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    Welcome to the wetside.

    I'm a dual drum harbor freight cheap-O tumbler kind of guy.... that is until I can get a bigger single drum. The small duals are nice when you are doing 9mm and .40 so they don't slip inside each other.
     
    CrossHairs likes this.
  11. CrossHairs

    CrossHairs Tigard Active Member

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    Just ran a pile of 9mm through the tumbler. This had already been vibrated in corn media......night and day difference. There was also a 'lot' of dirt in the water.

    I have a pile of 9mm to deprime and get ready for cleaning. I'm a little motivated to get some loading done now.
     
  12. P7id10T

    P7id10T Cedar Hills Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I do rotary wet pins and ultrasonic. Ultrasonic when I'm in a hurry, pins when I want it nice and shiny. I love how it makes almost no noise. The ultrasonic makes a buzzing that's in harmony with the tinnitus I have 24x7.
    I haven't used my vibratory tumbler in > 2 years - no more dust or noisy vibration for me. Still have ~10# of walnut pieces too.
     
  13. jinxx4ever

    jinxx4ever nebraska New Member

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    i've got both , wet and dry. what i don't like about the wet is it doesn't leave the brass as shiney as dry tumbling, "and" i've tried all the different additives. What i do like about the wet tumbler is is if the brass is deprimed, you don't have to worry about cleaning the primer pockets, they are clean. A person will be amazed how dirty the water is from wet tumbling. To rinse my brass after it comes out of the wet tumbler, i simply put my dillon large seperator in a tub of water, put my brass in, give it a dozen cranks and it's rinsed and all the steel pins fall to the bottom of the tub. Pour my brass out on a towel in the sun to dry and in a few hours it's ready to load. Pick the brass up out of the tub with a magnet , put it back in the tumbler and it's ready to go again. Before i got a magnet, i could just tilt the tub, all the pins would collect in the corner, pour off the excess water, and the pins were good to go.
     
  14. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    Wow! You get "Sun" where you live this time of year? :)
     
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  15. John Gault

    John Gault clackamas county Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I started with wet and stainless because I had a rock tumbler when I started reloading so I guess I started off fresh.. I use Lemi-shine and a touch of liquid soap.. I have considered dry tumbling after loading just to make them super pretty before they get put away but............

    Nine and .40 don't mix well for sure. Nor does any rifle caliber and pistol together. Sometimes I wash pre-sizing and sometimes I de-prime only and then wash to get those primer pockets clean.
     
  16. Ironbar

    Ironbar Tigard, OR Well-Known Member

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    I'm perfectly happy with corn media, a Thumlers Ultra Vibe, and some dollops of Mother's Aluminum Polish.
     
  17. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    If I shot more I would most definitely go with pin media. I've bought used brass for loading that I could tell was cleaned with pins and boy oh boy....Looks clean enough to eat from.
     
  18. therealhitman

    therealhitman USA Well-Known Member

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    Ironbar, so was I ...til I tried wet tumbling.
    And a +1 on Lemi-Shine. If you are not using it try it and you will never tumble without again. It is the difference maker, much more important than the pins (which I rarely use). You can also use Sour Salt if you can find it, any citric acid makes the brass look brand new.
     
  19. jluck

    jluck Really,Really, Close to Newport Oregon 97365 Voted #1 Member

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    Here is my wet Vs. dry results.

    tmp_12045-20150922_2012591395358898.jpg

    tmp_12045-20150922_2012591395358898.jpg
     
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  20. jinxx4ever

    jinxx4ever nebraska New Member

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    mine is just the opposite, and i've used the Lemi shine. Haven't tried the citric acid, so that' on my shopping list. thanks