May 15, 2003, 07:30 PM
Which tumblers do you folks use? I was looking at the Lyman 1200 with auto-feed, but don't know if its big enough, or if I should go up to a larger model?

Any thoughts?

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May 15, 2003, 07:36 PM
I have 2 Lyman 600s and just p/u the Dillon its their largest one.The tumbler is massive and works great.My Lyman 600s are still going strong had them for prob 15 yrs.

May 15, 2003, 07:38 PM
So you would buy a very large one? How many rounds should it hold?

May 15, 2003, 07:46 PM
I've been using Lymans big one (3200?) for a few years nowand have no complaints. Brass has a way of stacking up on you real quick so get the bigger one rather than the smaller one is my thought.

I came home one day to find it not working at all. The fuse was good etc., and a call to Lyman was met with "no user serviceable access or parts inside, send it in with $80 and it'll be replaced". So I cut the plastic air vent panel off the bottom with a dremel and easily found the loose wire which had vibrated loose, slammed on a wire nut and its been problem free ever since.
Thumbs up for the Lyman.

May 15, 2003, 07:50 PM
The standard one from Midway - not huge but, I find it adequate for my needs ..... mostly rifle stuff is all I regularly tumble.

May 15, 2003, 08:22 PM
I bought the Frankford Arsenal vibe cleaner from Midway a while back, the $40 unit. Works great, will hold 500 45acp or 400 223 easily, 250 7mm mag too. It is big enough for me, price was great too.

Standing Wolf
May 15, 2003, 08:39 PM
I have a small tumbler from Dillon that's worked just fine for four or five years, and Dillon's case polish does a good job for me, too.

May 15, 2003, 09:09 PM
I use the Midway also, always been big enough for my needs.

Steve Smith
May 16, 2003, 09:56 AM
I have a Lyman but poster JC121 (my roomate) has one (maybe Frankford Arsenal?) that has a rubber drum. Makes ALL the difference. I don't like reloading when my Lyman is running, but that rubber one is SO quiet!

May 16, 2003, 09:59 AM
I use the Midway and have found it more than adequate for my needs. I reload for pistol only.

May 16, 2003, 11:04 AM
Most guys here are talking about vibratory case cleaners, and the original poster asked about tumblers . They are very different.

Steve, could you get a brand on the rubber drum tumbler? I have a vibe cleaner but would also like to have a quiet tumbler.

May 16, 2003, 11:07 AM
How are they different?

Steve Smith
May 16, 2003, 11:11 AM
Most guys here are talking about vibratory case cleaners, and the original poster asked about tumblers . They are very different.

Good point.

The difference...a vibe cleaner just vibrates. A tumbler has a drum that revolves making the media and cases (or rocks, whatever) "tumble" inside.

This is a version of a tumbler: http://www.4facets.com/images/QT66.jpg

Note the rubber drum. These are usually made for polishing rocks so there is some thought that goes into making them quiet. A rock tumbler can run for a month before you change grits, so you want it to be quiet.

The one vibe cleaner that my romate has also has a rubber drum.

HSMITH...will do.

BTW, I'm an H Smith too.

May 16, 2003, 06:37 PM
BTW, I'm an H Smith too.

COOL! And thanks for putting an eye on the tumbler for me.

Guy B. Meredith
May 17, 2003, 12:43 AM
I have one of the Thumler tumblers from Lockstockbarrel.com. This was recommended by the moderator of the old CompuServe Firearms Forum that got me off on the right foot. I never did trust vibratory cleaners as the off center mass has just got to be self destructing. I let the Thumler run a bit longer, but it is guaranteed quieter and, I trust, more durable.

Steyr Hahn
May 18, 2003, 07:44 AM
I have 3 of the Midway vibratory type cleaners the newest one being 5 years old, the oldest is getting close to 9 years. The only failures have been the wiring, right there where the line cord connects to the motor leads. A couple of minutes and a new crimp connector and once again it are the sweet sound of brass getting ready to reload.

May 18, 2003, 07:59 AM
I would think that the large majority of reloaders refer to 'vibratory' case cleaners as 'tumblers', so much so that the term has become generic for any case cleaner, tumbler or vibratory. I do thank you for the vocabulary lesson. Now I don't have to consult 'Word Power Made Easy' for todays lesson.

I use the standard MidwayUSA 'Franklin Arsenal' tumbler (if they call it a tumbler, I call it a tumbler). Cost was about $40. It holds, per their catalogue, about 600 9mms, or equivalent. I usually run two to three hundred .357s or .40S&Ws through it at a time. Works well.

Have also added the moly lube kit. Also works well. If you decide to do this be prepared for a lot of noise. I live in a turn of the century (last, not current) home, about 3800 sq/ft, built of heart pine w/1X4 tongue and groove walls. The 'tumbler' is set up in the back part of the house and you can hear, it loud and clear when moly coating, all the way up to the front dens, even with the doors closed.

Lots of luck. There's a lot of good equipment out there. I don't think that you can go wrong with the Franklin Arsenal, RCBS, Dillon or any of the other major brand equipment.

Steve Smith
May 18, 2003, 05:04 PM
Ok, the vibratory cleaner with the rubber drum is a Thumbler's Tumbler brand Ultra-Vibe 10.

Here's the site http://www.thumlerstumbler.com/industrial.html

May 26, 2003, 09:56 AM
A significant aspect of tumbler v vibrator is that the vibrators are generally much more agressive, and therefore time-sensitive, subject, of course, to the type and condition of media.

Due to the variables mentioned above it is difficult to make a definitive statement, but generally, an hour or so in a vibrator is about all you want to go without violating the integrity of the cases, whereas the less agressive tumblers can be run all night long to achieve the same results.

I prefer the Thumlers tumbler on an all-night run, because it is in effect, "instant cleaning" because I can start it B-4 I go to bed, and the brass is pretty the next morning and i don't have to worry about setting a timer to avoid brass deterioration.

I left a load of 9mm range pick-ups (I only have about 50,000, but I still pick them up) in too long, and they were thinned to the point that the rims would pull of in attempting to pull them out of the carbide resizing die.

I tossed them.

The type of polish you use also has something to say about it all. I have used, with some success, non-ammoniac car polishes.

Nickle takes about half the time of brass.

Media that is no longer viable makes fine "sandbags". Put it in a plastic garbage bag (small size) and tie the end and put it in an empty shot bag and get your bride to run the Singer across the end of the bag a few times. The plastic bag keeps the media from soaking up moisture in event of rain.

ed dixon
May 28, 2003, 02:10 AM
Huh. I hadn't yet heard that a long (+ one hr.) vibratory cleaning could actually degrade brass integrity. I've never let mine on all night but have done some three-to-four-hour runs just to play with it and see if a little more time got the cases a little brighter. This info surprises me for sure.

May 28, 2003, 07:13 AM
Ed, as I said, there are so many variables, that it is almost impossible to make a factual statement about the issue. I was only recounting what happened to me.

All things being equal, new media, new polish, same amounts of everything, then a vibrator type will clean quicker than a tumbler.

Of course, cleaning equates removing surface. The machine isn't capable of removing just the stain, dirt and tarnish.

Somewhere along the continuim you reach a point of notable damage to the cases.

Nickle will stand "overcleaning" more than will brass.

AZ Jeff
May 28, 2003, 02:42 PM
As noted by others, a viratory tumbler is more aggressive in cleaning cases, and it IS possible to "overdo" the cleaning.

I solve this problem by connecting my tumbler to a household light timer, the kind you use to turn lights on and off when you are vacation.

I set the timer up to allow the tumbler to run for 4 hours within a 24 hour interval. With old, dirty, media, this gives me clean brass in one overnight run, and I can turn down the "ON" interval with new media as necessary.

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