Is there anything else to clean brass with....


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gorf
December 28, 2002, 02:49 PM
I've been using corn cob and ground walnut shells to clean my brass. Do any of you use anything else?

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Frohickey
December 28, 2002, 03:19 PM
Wet or dry?

For dry, corn cob and walnut with some car polish and a little water.
For wet, Birchwood-Casey Brass Case Cleaner Concentrate.

Chainsaw
December 28, 2002, 09:35 PM
I have used white vinegar for extremely dirty milsurp brass. Soak about 300 .223 in a 5 quart ice cream pail for 30 minutes stirring once in the while. Rinse with soft water and dry on the woodstove or oven. Then tumble.

Standing Wolf
December 28, 2002, 10:03 PM
I've been known to soak extremely dirty brass in hot water and dish washing soap for an hour or two, then rinse it well, let it dry, and tumble it. I've used corn meal in tumblers, but walnut shells seem to do a better job more quickly.

gorf
December 28, 2002, 10:57 PM
Thanks for the replies. I can try soaking those really dirty ones before I tumble them.:)

Patriot
December 28, 2002, 11:35 PM
For real dirty brass I throw in about 10 gun cleaning patches while cleaning.

They seem to "soak up" the dirt and make the media last longer.

Chainsaw
December 28, 2002, 11:42 PM
Patriot, good Point. I have used paper toweling as well with the media to keep it clean.

A friend just uses toilet paper in his tumbler-no media. Says it works good for cleaning the brass. He claims yet another cleaning use for T Paper:D

W.Va.Glassman
December 29, 2002, 07:00 AM
Also add new or used fabric softener sheets.They collect dust and grime,and take some of the static out of the bowel.

444
December 29, 2002, 07:43 AM
The best tumbling media I have used is Lyman Tuffnutt (or something like that). It is just another nut shell product with some type of polishing agent added at the factory. It ihas been my experience that my brass gets cleaned much faster and comes out better looking since I began using that media.
I have tried a lot of different stuff over the years, mostly additives and this stuff beats them all.
I use the paper towel in the media trick. The towel seems to come out dirty. I never decided it it makes my media last longer or not.

rick458
December 29, 2002, 10:31 AM
I have heard a little liquid FLITZ works well too the Dillon Rapid Polish does real well also you put it in for 15 min before the cases when using new media:)

W.Va.Glassman
December 30, 2002, 12:28 AM
At the place I retired from,I made a tumbler used oil dry to clean brass slow but free.I used this setup for over 20+ years no one asked what it was.Ay home I use vibatory cleaners set up with corncob walnut&pecan.

duncan
December 31, 2002, 01:17 AM
Pet stores around here are now selling finely ground corn cob media and crushed walnut shells.

Several drops of Flitz and 4 hours and it's better looking than any factory brass.

And that is about it. Tried wet and it was just a mess.

Suggest the Berry's tumblers for value. For bulk, Dillon has some nice ones.

Gewehr98
December 31, 2002, 01:36 AM
Also add new or used fabric softener sheets.They collect dust and grime,and take some of the static out of the bowel.

Dryer sheets in the bowel could be uncomfortable, at best. :D


I do use the dryer sheets in my tumbler BOWL to help keep the corncob and crushed walnut media clean. Which, by the way, gets purchased in bulk at the local pet store, much cheaper than from the gun stores.

If I have brass that's gotten considerably darker than I like, or is just plain ugly, I'll use the white vinegar routine myself. However, I speed things up a smidgen by adding a couple teaspoons of Clorox to the mix. I think it makes a weak hydrochloric acid solution, hence the bright gold brass once it's pulled out. But no ammonia! Never!

triggertime
December 31, 2002, 08:51 AM
Static in the bowel is dangerous in a gaseous environment. A little seepage and its another case of spontaneous human combustion.

41 Redhawk
December 31, 2002, 11:56 AM
Dry rice works very well to take the nasty dirt off. It doesn't polish like corn cob or walnut but it does make them clean.

dfrog
January 1, 2003, 11:52 PM
I use a mixture of corn cob and ground walnut shells; about 65% CC and 35% GW. Works pretty good for me.

LAH
January 5, 2003, 12:51 PM
We also use rice. It's a very good cleaner. Our tumblers run mostly 24/7 cleaning brass for resale. I like rice because it's cheap and will clean a lot of brass before it gets too dirty. I do admit I'm tempted to try vinegar though. For polishing we still us corn cob and Midway Polish. We have found by cleaning your brass well with rice first the more expensive corn cob will last so much longer before becoming loaded up.

HarvDog
March 6, 2014, 11:04 AM
Someone recently told me to try Jewlers Rouge and a little mineral spirits in your walnut or corn cob. Anyone heard of this?
Thank you

USSR
March 6, 2014, 11:17 AM
For newly acquired brass that has some corrosion spots on it that I want to remove, I have been known to add a tablespoon of scouring powder (Ajax or Comet) to my walnut media. Does a good job.

Don

sexybeast
March 6, 2014, 11:45 AM
Still using Rice. Crushed walnut is cheaper now in our area so will be going to it soon. Rice does seem to last a long time, I get at least 25 loads with it. Does not make the brass super shiney but it is clean which is what I want.

1KPerDay
March 6, 2014, 12:20 PM
Static in the bowel is dangerous in a gaseous environment. A little seepage and its another case of spontaneous human combustion.
*rimshot*

horseman1
March 6, 2014, 12:24 PM
If I have brass that's gotten considerably darker than I like, or is just plain ugly, I'll use the white vinegar routine myself. However, I speed things up a smidgen by adding a couple teaspoons of Clorox to the mix. I think it makes a weak hydrochloric acid solution, hence the bright gold brass once it's pulled out. But no ammonia! Never!

Be careful mixing vinegar and bleach. It releases chlorine gas.

50 Shooter
March 6, 2014, 12:24 PM
For surplus brass I like to use Iosso liquid cleaner, SS pins and liquid cleaner seems to be one of the best methods right now. Might not be cheaper but they clean brass to better then new condition.

1KPerDay
March 6, 2014, 12:25 PM
Someone recently told me to try Jewlers Rouge and a little mineral spirits in your walnut or corn cob. Anyone heard of this?
Thank you
That's basically what Lyman Tufnut (treated walnut) media is. Walnut media with a red polishing powder. Works VERY well. I've been using the same original bottle for 3 years, mixed occasionally with corncob. Still works fine, though it takes longer to get a good clean/polish. I add a capful of mineral spirits once in a while and a bit of Nu-finish car polish when I remember.

floorit76
March 6, 2014, 01:00 PM
Has anyone tried sand? Would it be too aggresive? I have "sugar sand" on my property that is as fine as, or finer than sandblasting media. When it thaws out this spring I think I'll try it out.

Grumulkin
March 6, 2014, 01:10 PM
And this thread was resurected from January 2003. LOL.

A lot has changed since 2002 and 2003. I've been using stainless steel pins in a Thumler's Tumbler for 2 or 3 years now. I recently processed 2,500+ cases from a police range. They had obviously been outside, were tarnised, dirty, etc. They were so dirty I broke down and washed them with water to get some dirt off and but they were still dirty. After processing them, I tumbled them in stainless steel pins, Dawn dishwashen detergent with a little Lemishine for the first 2 hours tumble. After the second 2 hours they were removed.

After all was said and done, two or three cases were unusable, there was one aluminum case and about 5 were still tarnished. All the rest were shiney inside and out and the primer pockets, with the exception of a tiny amount of carbon stain on some, were clean as well.

Try it and you'll probably never go back to walnut shell, corn cob and all the other stuff you've tried.

oneounceload
March 6, 2014, 01:37 PM
I add some red jeweler's rouge to the corn cob/walnut mix and they come out nice and shiny. Nu-finish will also work

788Ham
March 6, 2014, 11:54 PM
Fill up your tumbler with lizard grit, walnut, add a couple of teaspoons of Nu Finish car wax, mix while tumbler is running, can't get any better than that.

DBR
March 7, 2014, 01:50 AM
I used walnut shell as a reasonably aggressive media for years.

Now I am using Urea 30-40 grit plastic blasting media. It produces almost no dust, lasts indefinitely, does not absorb anything from the fired brass and cleans very well in my Dillon vibratory tumbler. I add a quartered Bounty paper towel to absorb dirt and the media can be washed in warm water and laid out on a towel to dry. It is more than adequate for routine cleaning before anything touches my dies and all I do for pistol cases.

One source is:
http://www.kramerindustriesonline.com/UR.html

Just a reminder: polishes are abrasive and not a good thing to have on cases that are going through sizing dies. Therefore not a good thing to use with tumbling media to clean cases before processing. Just because it has been done forever and no one had a problem doesn't mean it is the best way to do it. Polishing media residue mixed with sizing lube will increase the force needed for sizing.

If I want "better than factory" mostly for rifle cases, I use this before decapping, resizing and trimming then run the cases through 3hrs of stainless steel pin tumbling in my rotary tumbler. I use a Dillon trimmer and the pins do a good job of deburring and removing sizing lube.

DBR
March 7, 2014, 02:04 AM
Real "sand" is too hard and abrasive for cleaning cartridge brass.

FROGO207
March 7, 2014, 06:20 AM
Real sand produces silica dust that should not be inhaled at all for health reasons. If you use it now in a tumbler there will be health problems in your future. Ask all those that sandblasted for years without protection-----if any are still alive.:eek: Using it wet would make a large mess as well.

I also have the best results with a Thumlers rock tumbler and SS pins. I do tumble my finished rounds or cleaned brass before loading it in corncob and NuFinish to protect the shine that I so carefully produced in the first place.:) There are a couple threads that show you what this method will produce if you search for them. YMMV

hartcreek
March 7, 2014, 07:22 AM
I had a bucket of real dirty range brass. I just used a scoop of laundry soap in the bucket with hot water and a few shakes and let it sit for a day. Next day I just rinsed the brass off and let it dry in the sun.

jcwit
March 7, 2014, 10:13 AM
I'd skip the sand idea, personally I wish none of that in my barrels by any chance, but they aren't my guns.

Rice, great for those who like to punch out grains from the flash holes.

Final thought, what's wrong with using the tried & true 20/40 grit corn cob and/or walnut, cheap, readily available, shipped right to your door, no gas expense?

Toss in a little, yes a little, just a teaspoon full of just about any auto cleaner wax/polish, Nu-Finish is highly recommended, and you're all set to go.

BluewaterLa
March 8, 2014, 03:52 AM
Hello all. New to the sight and thought I would chime in.
I also use white vinegar and dawn dish liquid for a wet clean/rinse for a couple hours. Oven dry brass in oven at 170 for one and half hour.
Deprime and dry tumble with walnut media from harbor freight, add small amount of new finish to the mix. I also run about 1/2 cup of .177 cal. BBs in the media and that gives me really great looking clean brass in 2 1/2 to 4 hours depending on how many cases tumbled at one time.
Try the BBs for yourself ! I'm sure you will notice the difference as I did.
Just some advise I got from an older and more wise man.

celem
March 8, 2014, 08:40 AM
Lizard Litter works the best for me. Cleans better than corn cob and it is smaller that other walnut shells so it doesn't in the flash hole.

joed
March 8, 2014, 06:59 PM
I've been using walnut shells and mineral spirits for more years than I can count. With a fair dose of mineral spirits the brass is clean in less than 2 hours. It will disapate over time.

UKWildcats
March 8, 2014, 08:09 PM
When my POS tumbler died (gift -- but still a crappy one) I broke out the wives rock tumbler from Harbor Freight and tried out wet tumbling using SS pins and mild cleaner)

-- Work great, cleans better from dry media
-- even better if you de-prime first so primer pockets get clean

I did purchase another tumbler (Midsouth made by Berry)

Will use dry media for big batches but wet tumbling for small stuff (lets say 150 cases -- but 30-06 might only be 50)

Where I got my media -- http://www.drillspot.com/products/521055/econoline_526040g-40_40_lbs_blast_media -- great priced worked great

UK

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