Cleaning brass

Page 1 of 2 1, 2  Next

Go down

Cleaning brass

Post by thessler on Tue Oct 16, 2018 9:01 pm

Hi
I'm new to pistol reloading and wondering what to buy regarding cleaning brass.
My choices seem to be a tumbler or an ultrasonic cleaner.
Please advise on best choice. 
Thanks, Tom

thessler

Posts : 57
Join date : 2018-05-14

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by cdrt on Tue Oct 16, 2018 9:08 pm

A tumbler is probably your best bet.  I have both and use the tumbler more than the other.
BTW Nu-Finish car wax works really well with corn cob or walnut shell media.
cdrt
cdrt

Posts : 552
Join date : 2016-04-12
Location : Amarillo, Texas

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by zanemoseley on Tue Oct 16, 2018 9:14 pm

I like my SS pin tumbler pretty good. It's very efficient at cleaning. My only problem is over time my brass tends to dull in color but is still clean. I used to think I was using too much Lemishine but ive been just using a 45 shells worth of Lemishine in a whole batch and it still seems to be doing it. Perhaps its my water chemistry. I would never want to go with a corn cob vibratory cleaner, if anything I might try ultrasonic at some point.

zanemoseley

Posts : 1100
Join date : 2015-07-11

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by Wobbley on Tue Oct 16, 2018 9:46 pm

Try it with distilled and see if the brass comes out better.
Wobbley
Wobbley

Posts : 1887
Join date : 2015-02-13

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by Caster3845 on Tue Oct 16, 2018 10:52 pm

zanemoseley...... Try cleaning the pins with Simple Green. Just mix according to directions, run for an hour, and rinse well. After time the pins pick up a coating of carbon or something and loose their efficiency. I had the same thing happen to me and couldn't figure out why the brass wasn't shiny anymore. T answer the OP question....tumbler all the way. The US cleaner doesn't take as long, But, IMO,  doesn't clean as well either. The whole secret is to deprime before you tumble. I've been using the pins for 3 years now and I am still amazed at how well  they the brass.......Paul
Caster3845
Caster3845

Posts : 73
Join date : 2015-02-22
Location : Lisbon, IA

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by JIMPGOV on Tue Oct 16, 2018 10:55 pm

I HAD THE SAME PROBLEM WITH THE BRASS DULLING. INSTEAD OF THE DISH SOAP WITH THE LEMONSHINE, I SWITCHED TO CAR WASH THAT HAD LITTLE WAX BEADS SUSPENDED IN IT. SOLVED THE PROBLEM RIGHT AWAY. JP

RAIN-X, I WENT DOWNSTAIRS AND CHECKED.


Last edited by JIMPGOV on Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:11 am; edited 1 time in total

JIMPGOV

Posts : 339
Join date : 2011-09-27

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by zanemoseley on Tue Oct 16, 2018 11:02 pm

I'll try the car wash next time, I've been using dawn. I'll also clean my pins.

zanemoseley

Posts : 1100
Join date : 2015-07-11

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by farmboy on Tue Oct 16, 2018 11:05 pm

cdrt wrote:A tumbler is probably your best bet.  I have both and use the tumbler more than the other.
BTW Nu-Finish car wax works really well with corn cob or walnut shell media.
+1 - IMHO a tumbler with NuFinish mixed in the media is the fastest and less work.  the wax makes reloading easier also.

Just make sure the Nufinish has mixed in well before you add your brass to avoid clumps inside the brass.
I also throw in several used fabric softener sheets to keep dust down and the media cleaner longer.
farmboy
farmboy

Posts : 191
Join date : 2012-10-04
Location : Wichita, KS

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by apipeguy on Tue Oct 16, 2018 11:08 pm

Couple tablespoons of Armor All Wash and Wax and a quarter teaspoon of Lemishine works great for me with my SS pins.
apipeguy
apipeguy

Posts : 38
Join date : 2018-03-28
Age : 63
Location : Michigan

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by chopper on Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:02 am

I use a rock polisher tumbler that holds a lot of water, I think the total capacity for it is 16lbs. I use a little Lemishine and Blue Coral car wash and shine, as much water as I can fill.I think the wash and shine helps with the 550b expander tube not being as sticky also. I use 5lbs of pins, the smaller diameter ones that will go through the pocket flash hole. I can put in around 250 45 cases at one filling. 
 I used to use a vibratory cleaner and chopped walnut shells and added a quarter cup of mineral spirits to them mixed it in real good. This would clean the brass pretty good, then I'd replace the media with corn cob and use liquid car polish and that would make the brass shiny.
 I used this method for a long time, then a friend showed me his fresh tumble cleaned brass. What impressed me most was the clean primer pockets and inside of the cases.
 If your just starting out it's probably a bit cheaper to use a vibratory type cleaner and Harbor Freight is real cheap on crushed walnut shells. This method will work satisfactory for many years and many shooters still use it.
Stan

chopper

Posts : 224
Join date : 2013-10-30
Age : 67
Location : Western Iowa

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by Wobbley on Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:07 am

I use the wet method but I don’t use pins nor do I deprime first.  So it’s mostly an exterior clean.  Th interior gets cleaned but not stain free.  Drying is in the oven for an hour at 220F.
Wobbley
Wobbley

Posts : 1887
Join date : 2015-02-13

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by jglenn21 on Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:07 am

I run a tumbler with corn cob. Farmboy's advice is dead on for shining the brass quicker and keeping the dust down
jglenn21
jglenn21

Posts : 1620
Join date : 2015-04-07
Age : 70
Location : monroe , ga

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by bruce martindale on Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:21 am

I have vibratory, with corn or walnut and slight mineral spirits, but the dust is captured because of the 50-50 lube l use on bullets

bruce martindale

Posts : 245
Join date : 2011-07-29
Location : Upstate NY

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by BE Mike on Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:47 am

I've been using a Lortone QT 12 since the early 80's. I like finely ground walnut shells or fine corn cob for media and a small amount of liquid Flitz metal polish. I'm sure that other metal polishes, like Dillon, work well. I haven't considered going to a wet tumble with stainless steel pins because the basement where I do my brass cleaning doesn't have a water source nor drain. I don't feel like it is necessary to clean the primer pockets. Actually, it isn't necessary to polish the brass, just clean it. I do like shiny brass, though. I avoid the dust and wear disposable gloves and shop apron during the process. I also use D-Lead soap after cleaning brass and reloading. Here's a link for the Lortone QT-12. If you shop around, you can find much better prices. https://lortone.com/collections/tumblers/products/model-qt12
BE Mike
BE Mike

Posts : 1578
Join date : 2011-07-29
Location : Indiana

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by cdrt on Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:48 pm

BE Mike wrote:I've been using a Lortone QT 12 since the early 80's. I like finely ground walnut shells or fine corn cob for media and a small amount of liquid Flitz metal polish. I'm sure that other metal polishes, like Dillon, work well. I haven't considered going to a wet tumble with stainless steel pins because the basement where I do my brass cleaning doesn't have a water source nor drain. I don't feel like it is necessary to clean the primer pockets. Actually, it isn't necessary to polish the brass, just clean it. I do like shiny brass, though. I avoid the dust and wear disposable gloves and shop apron during the process. I also use D-Lead soap after cleaning brass and reloading. Here's a link for the Lortone QT-12. If you shop around, you can find much better prices. https://lortone.com/collections/tumblers/products/model-qt12
+1 on the Lortone QT-12.  I bought one in 1975 from Gil Hebard and it is still going strong.  I much prefer it to the vibratory type cleaners and it only takes a very short time to get the brass clean.
cdrt
cdrt

Posts : 552
Join date : 2016-04-12
Location : Amarillo, Texas

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by WillH on Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:42 pm

I'm just using an old second hand Lyman vibratory tumbler with the Lyman green tumbling media and it works great.  Cheapest way to go I think and does a pretty good job.  Media needs changing out when it turns black and loses effectiveness.  That happens maybe every 5000 cases or so I'm guessing - maybe more. I've also found it usually takes 1.5-2 hrs run time.  After reloading a few years I've found the cosmetic condition of the brass isn't super critical so long as it is reasonably clean.  I've added some of the polishing compounds and such and didn't think it made much difference.

WillH

Posts : 42
Join date : 2017-04-27
Location : Chesapeake, VA

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by troystaten on Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:06 pm

I have an RCBS ultrasonic case cleaner and I use Hornady case cleaner.  I have been pleased with how it works.  I run the cases through the cleaner and then dry them on a towel in the sun.

troystaten

Posts : 359
Join date : 2012-04-19

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by zanemoseley on Wed Oct 17, 2018 5:26 pm

The biggest negative with an ultrasonic cleaners is the cost of the cleaning fluid. With ss pin wet tumbling you can run for years with $5 of lemishine and Dawn soap.

zanemoseley

Posts : 1100
Join date : 2015-07-11

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by Wmvdg123 on Wed Oct 17, 2018 6:23 pm

Does cleaning brass have an effect on accuracy?

Wmvdg123

Posts : 75
Join date : 2017-10-02

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by messenger on Wed Oct 17, 2018 6:43 pm

zanemoseley wrote:I like my SS pin tumbler pretty good. It's very efficient at cleaning. My only problem is over time my brass tends to dull in color but is still clean. I used to think I was using too much Lemishine but ive been just using a 45 shells worth of Lemishine in a whole batch and it still seems to be doing it. Perhaps its my water chemistry. I would never want to go with a corn cob vibratory cleaner, if anything I might try ultrasonic at some point.

You are using too much Lemshine. I will clean 200 45 brass and use at most 1/4 teaspoon lemshine. I used to use a teaspoon and they would be dull. A 45 casing full of Lemshine is more than a teaspoon.

Bill
messenger
messenger

Posts : 409
Join date : 2011-06-18
Location : North Carolina

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by zanemoseley on Wed Oct 17, 2018 6:47 pm

Dang, I started using the 45 case in an attempt to use less. I'll try way less and see what happens.

zanemoseley

Posts : 1100
Join date : 2015-07-11

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by messenger on Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:18 pm

zanemoseley wrote:Dang, I started using the 45 case in an attempt to use less. I'll try way less and see what happens.

It takes so little to work. If you were to fill a 22 casing, that would be about right.

Bill
messenger
messenger

Posts : 409
Join date : 2011-06-18
Location : North Carolina

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by SteveT on Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:46 pm

IMO this chain has gone far from the OP's question.

The simplest method is a vibratory cleaner with corn cob or crushed walnut. Put the brass and walnuts in the vibrator, let it run for an hour or two, separate and start loading. There are additives you can use, they probably help but are not necessary. I use a couple of tablespoons of mineral spirits. Crushed walnuts can be bought from pet stores for bird and reptile cages cheaper than from shooting supply stores. I replace the material every few years. You can buy 50 lb bags even cheaper from industrial supply houses, but that's more than I would use in a few decades. Running the machine longer and replacing the walnuts or corn cob more frequently will get you shinier brass. Some additives might help, I don't know, I've never tried anything other than mineral spirits.

If clean shiny brass is important, you can put a lot more effort into it, but they won't shoot any better. I have no doubt that the various wet methods work better and produce shiner brass. I am not convinced it is worth the effort. The one definite advantage of any wet method is that the lead dust will be better controlled. I would not run a vibratory cleaner indoors.
SteveT
SteveT

Posts : 359
Join date : 2011-06-10
Location : Illinois

https://sites.google.com/site/sdturner/shooting

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by messenger on Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:59 am

thessler wrote:Hi
I'm new to pistol reloading and wondering what to buy regarding cleaning brass.
My choices seem to be a tumbler or an ultrasonic cleaner.
Please advise on best choice. 
Thanks, Tom
 
If I had to do it over again I would not have gone to wet tumbling. I looked at a friend's brass and figured he went to wet tumbling. He didn't. He has been using Lyman tumbling media. I would say it's about 90% as good as wet tumbling. I was never satisfied with the inside of my cases with dry tumbling. Lyman media does an excellent job.

https://usa.palmettostatearmory.com/lyman-tufnut-3-lb-box-7631332.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIjb6piYSQ3gIV00oNCh123goGEAQYASABEgLs8_D_BwE

Bill
messenger
messenger

Posts : 409
Join date : 2011-06-18
Location : North Carolina

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by dronning on Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:38 am

I use a vibratory cleaner with corn cob or crushed walnut & Nufinish for everything but 45 brass and get great results.  I have two 5 gallon pails of Federal 45 brass I cycle through so I went to wet tumbling with SS pins.  When I need to clean the 45 brass I do it in several batches of 1,500-2,000 using a Biggdawg tumbler.  I deprime first and use Dawn & Lemishine.  I have to use a case lube when loading the wet tumbled brass, I use One Shot.
- Dave
dronning
dronning

Posts : 2060
Join date : 2013-03-20
Age : 65
Location : Lakeville, MN

Back to top Go down

Re: Cleaning brass

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 1 of 2 1, 2  Next

Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum