Vibrators are not Tumblers


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Robby from Long Island
January 21, 2010, 08:00 PM
I've been reading a lot of posts recently about the safety of tumbling live rounds, and noticed something strange.

People are referring to their vibrators as "Tumblers", which they ar e not, they are vibrators. Even the manufacturers of some vibrators are now calling them tumblers. To the best of my knowledge, there are only two tumblers on the market. One is "Thumlers Tumbler" and the other "RCBS Sidewinder".

The action of an actual tumbler is more violent internally than is the action of a vibrator.

I can't help but wonder how many people are referring to their vibrator as a tumbler when discussing the safety of tumbling live ammo. I've been using a Thumler tumbler for about 25 years and more recently bought a vibrator.

While I might consider cleaning loaded ammo in a vibrator, I never would in a tumbler. This of course is JMHO.

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warnerwh
January 21, 2010, 08:09 PM
You have a good point. That has always bothered me too. Unfortunately most people call a vibrator and tumbler online. Tumbling live ammo is something that I would consider dangerous also.

snuffy
January 21, 2010, 08:12 PM
The action of an actual tumbler is more violent internally than is the action of a vibrator.

Oh? Then explain why a vibratory tumbler cleans/shines so much faster than your "tumbler".!? Another thing, since you have both, take a long look at what the brass being cleaned in a vibratory tumbler is doing. looks like it's tumbling to me! I guess the correct term is circulating?

I usually try to use the above terms when referring to my tumbler, "vibratory tumbler".

David Wile
January 21, 2010, 08:14 PM
Hey Robby,

I have been fighting the battle of discriminating between the use of vibratory cleaning of cases and tumbling cases for cleaning for many years, but it is a lost cause I am afraid. No matter, I still always refer to the fact that I use a vibratory cleaner rather than a tumbler. While I have never tumbled finished rounds, I frequently put live rounds in the vibratory cleaner for hours on end with no deleterious results.

Best wishes,
Dave Wile

David Wile
January 21, 2010, 08:22 PM
Hey Snuffy,

You are full of bologna. "Vibratory tumbler?" Here you do all this great work showing folks that cleaning loaded rounds is safe and debunking the exploding round myth, and what do you do then? You coin a new term that is as dumb as the myth we are trying to shed some informed light upon.

Oh well, anyone who has done such a good job as you have been doing in recent days can get a pass on his "vibratory tumbler" term. Seriously Snuffy, thanks for all the good information.

Best wishes,
Dave Wile

Sidewinder72
January 21, 2010, 08:48 PM
I am guilty of calling my vibratory case cleaner a tumbler too. But it does tumble cases around very well. Used a homemade tumbler but quickly went to a store bought vibratory one.

glockgod
January 21, 2010, 08:54 PM
with this. But I ain't gonna do it!;)

jcwit
January 21, 2010, 08:55 PM
Someone needs to inform the manufactures just what their making, Its obvious they have no idea.

Is this going to turn out like the Clip versus Magazine debacle?

Have we nothing better to do?


Opps I've got a coma and a capital I in the word its.

Roccobro
January 21, 2010, 08:56 PM
I'm failing to see how this thread is reloading -or even firearm- related....

Justin

EddieNFL
January 21, 2010, 09:04 PM
Check the various websites. Seems most manufacturers call them tumblers. Maybe because the rounds move from the bottom is a "tumbling" motion (at least my three work that way), albeit slowly.

Personally, I don't care.

Jesse Heywood
January 21, 2010, 09:14 PM
IIRC, case vibrators have been referred to as tumblers for at least 40 years.

Floppy_D
January 21, 2010, 09:15 PM
While I might consider cleaning loaded ammo in a vibrator, I never would in a tumbler. This of course is JMHO.

Thirty minutes in either is going to make no difference. Tumble the brass beforehand, load, tumble for 30 minutes, carry on smartly. This thread is silly.

David Wile
January 21, 2010, 09:28 PM
Hey folks,

I think this all is Snuffy's fault. He started this misnomer more than 40 years ago. He was probably already old back then.

Best wishes,
Dave Wile

lgbloader
January 21, 2010, 09:32 PM
I'm failing to see how this thread is reloading -or even firearm- related....
Justin

I hear ya, Justin.

I think the term is 'stirring the pot'? perhaps even borderline 'troll'.

I think this thread is alot to do about nothing.

LGB

Floppy_D
January 21, 2010, 09:34 PM
Hey folks,

I think this all is Snuffy's fault. He started this misnomer more than 40 years ago. He was probably already old back then.

Best wishes,
Dave Wile

If you wanna ask him out, just do it. No need for schoolyard foreplay. :D

Bush Pilot
January 21, 2010, 09:40 PM
I think I lost 20 points on my IQ just reading this read. Time to go pretty up some brass.

Walkalong
January 21, 2010, 09:45 PM
but it is a lost causeYep. Like Band Aids. They are adhesive strips, but we call all of them band aids. Kleenex, same thing. Tumbler, same thing. Tumbling and swirling around in a vibrating bowl. :D

EddieNFL
January 21, 2010, 09:50 PM
Time to go pretty up some brass.

In a tumbler?

kelbro
January 21, 2010, 10:07 PM
Is it OK to put brasso in a tumbler, vibrator, or vibratory tumbler?

herohog
January 21, 2010, 10:13 PM
If it vibrates off the loading bench and tumbles to the floor can I call it a tumbler then?

ants
January 21, 2010, 10:18 PM
It isn't "media".

It's "medium".

The word refers to the material in its singular form.
It does not refer to all the granules together as a collective plural.

Singular: Crushed walnut is my favorite medium.
Plural: Walnut and corncob are the most common media.


These examples are correct. But I don't expect everyone to understand or agree, since the misuse is so common.

Jesse Heywood
January 21, 2010, 10:19 PM
If you wanna ask him out, just do it. No need for schoolyard foreplay.

Naw. He's too busy trying to figure out which end of the vibrator he needs to use!

Robby from Long Island
January 21, 2010, 10:25 PM
I hear ya, Justin.

I think the term is 'stirring the pot'? perhaps even borderline 'troll'.

I think this thread is alot to do about nothing.

LGB
Some posts aren't even worth responding to.

snuffy
January 21, 2010, 10:32 PM
He was probably already old back then.

People say I'm old as dirt. I say, I know dirt by it's first name!.

Looks like cabin fever has set in pretty heavy this year. Well at least I got some fresh air today, found out a few things besides.

I really don't care what they're called, all I know is they clean/shine my brass better than anything else I've tried. So noe I have to start calling them vibratory CLEANERS?:neener:

JimKirk
January 21, 2010, 10:40 PM
It isn't "media".

It's "medium".


So if you have more than one medium .... you have mediums?

JK

(Medium) A substance through which a force or other influence is transmitted.

(mediums) A person claiming to be able to communicate between the dead and the living.

bds
January 21, 2010, 10:42 PM
I got a chuckle out of this one :D

Whether the accurate term is vibrator vs tumbler, I think when the manufacturers decided how they were going to call/list in catalogs in more conservative times back then, the term "vibrator" might have caused confusion with the "other" vibrator.

I think vibratory tumbler is what they went to and we now call it tumbler for short.

IMHO.

What do you think?

The Bushmaster
January 21, 2010, 11:05 PM
I think you guys need to get out of the cabin and play in the snow for a while.

I have a brass cleaner as old as Snuffy. The writing on the manufacturers label states "Lyman's Turbo 1200 Tumbler". It vibrates for those who never seen a Turbo 1200...

evan price
January 21, 2010, 11:59 PM
What a silly thread.

The only way the tumbler can work is to create a space between the granules of the media that allows the brass to fall into that space, rubbing on the media granules and polishing the brass. If there was no space there would be no polishing action due to no movement.

A rotating tumbler "tumbles" by physically tossing the media granules and the brass around inside the drum using a rotating motion.

A vibratory tumbler "tumbles" by using high-frequency oscillation to create a fluidized bed of media, which the brass then moves around in by the shape of the bowl. I've stared into enough vibratory tumblers to know that the stuff inside tumbles around and around both radially and axially. We used some giant vibratory tumblers with ceramic cones in industrial plants.

Samgotit
January 22, 2010, 12:20 AM
Yea, this one goes straight to the metal shredder.

David Wile
January 22, 2010, 01:18 AM
Hey folks,

This is not funny. I want to know who told Snuffy my middle name was Dirt?

Best wishes,
Dave Wile

Floppy_D
January 22, 2010, 08:03 AM
This thread is awesome. :)

EddieNFL
January 22, 2010, 08:25 AM
Gonna change the media in my Lyman tumbler and clean some brasses so I can load some bullets with the new 200 grain heads I got and shoot my Blackhawk pistol. Later, I plan to fire a few clips through my AR15 assault gun.

It may be a moot (as opposed to mute) point, but we sure do love our semantics.

Jesse Heywood
January 22, 2010, 09:19 AM
So if you put a mute on your tumbler does it vibrate quieter? The wife thinks mine is too noisy.

EddieNFL
January 22, 2010, 09:28 AM
Sometimes, I wish I could put a mute on the wife. sigh...

jfh
January 22, 2010, 09:28 AM
I'm going to strike a happy medium here...and not contribute.

Jim H.

LubeckTech
February 7, 2010, 01:33 PM
I've never tried it but I have often wondered if an ice cream "freezer" tilted at a 45 degree angle would make an effective tumbler.

dmazur
February 7, 2010, 02:34 PM
I heard a voice in the wilderness amongst the schoolyard banter, I think -

Is it OK to put brasso in a tumbler, vibrator, or vibratory tumbler?

Here's something I shamelessly lifted from the Reloader's Nest forum (posted by "Wolfgang") -

After all the years of reading what people do to their brass, it just amazes me that more of them aren't missing pieces or dead. Several folks on another forum brag about using non-woven abrasive and steel wool pads while spinning the brass with a drill motor. One commented (paraphrase) "I couldn't believe how much black dust came off my brass using the drill and Scotch pad even though it looked clean." Well, I hated to burst that guy's balloon but that was metal he was removing. On the same forum, one claims to soak his brass in vinegar for several days then put them in the tumbler while wetting the media with a little vinegar as well and he commented on the "pretty pink tint they acquire". Yep, you gots it thar bubba...that "pretty pink" means you've dissolved the zinc out of the alloy and corroded the copper which gives you that puuurrrrdy pink.

All copper alloys (brass is copper & zinc) are rapidly attacked by ammonia with the formation of a bright blue corrosion product that will darken to green or black depending on the level of corrosion and the particular alloy. Even in very low concentrations of ammonia, brass that is stressed by either residual or applied tension will spontaneously crack by 'stress corrosion'; this a phenomenon first observed eons ago and is often called "season cracking" or "age cracking". Ammonia, vinegar, mercury, certain salts and chlorine will also cause similar failure. Internal tensile stresses caused by cold working, as in the sizing and loading of cartridge cases, makes the brass highly susceptible to catastrophic stress-corrosion failure.

Flitz and many other metal cleaners/polishes contain urea monohydrochloride (urea reacted with hydrochloric acid) and/or ammonia as well as surfactants and abrasive media (normally alumina which is a powdered aluminum oxide; other contain a variety of other abrasive materials as well). Many "reloaders" will brag on using a cola drink or catsup to clean brass without considering the primary active ingredients in the cola are phosphoric acid and glycerin while the active ingredients in catsup are acetic acid (vinegar), citric acid, malic acid and iodine (some brands contain tartaric acid too).

I keep telling people, clean brass is important but "clean" does not mean it has to be "shiny". Brass is like aluminum, lead, silver, and some other metals; it develops a natural oxide layer that actually helps protect it from further corrosion. The primary concern in cleaning brass is a good washing with a non-acid, non-residual detergent followed by a thorough rinse and dry using non-chlorinated and non-acidic (Ph neutral) water. Minimal use of mild abrasives is acceptable to help loosen and remove stubborn dirt but should not be used to the extent of removing the protective oxide layer. Removing the oxide layer exposed the alloy to further corrosion which leads to metal loss just the same as grinding it away with a strong abrasive like a non-woven or steel wool pad.

Just wait until you start seeing the rash of complaints about accuracy losses increase - it'll take a little more time before people start figuring out that the abrasive and corrosive bore cleaners so commonly used today ain't such a good thing. It's already started, just talked with a fellow yesterday who said he's already replaced more rifle barrels this year than he has in the last five years combined - common thread to all of them is bore paste and ammonia solvents.

I've read quite a few posts about this topic. Comments vary from "I've done it for x years and have had no trouble" to "It attacked my brass and made it brittle and now I have split cases and head separations".

I tend to agree with the above. There is no reason to chemically attack your brass, considering the job you expect it to perform as a pressure vessel. :)

jcwit
February 7, 2010, 04:35 PM
So you suggest to use a mechanical polish such as rouge?

Further more polishes that contain ammonia should be alright as the ammonia evaporates fairly quickly leaving only the mechanical polishing agent. I used to be dead set against Brasso till I relized that the ammonia evaporated out of the media, if one lets it set before using.

To simplify things I suggest folks just stay with auto polish, after all if it good enough for my Rolls Royce (hehehe) it aught to be good enough for my .45 ACP brass.

FROGO207
February 7, 2010, 10:10 PM
It should be good forthe firearm itself also. Think signal mirror, used to blind the BG while he is try'n ta jam anotha' clip inta' the piece.:D

I'd say this thread is medium well done.:rolleyes:

Remo-99
February 8, 2010, 06:51 AM
Yes, they are vibrators, rather than tumblers.
But it's the action, although more gentle than an actual tumbler, it's still a tumbling action caused by the vibrations, that the makers are refering to.

qajaq59
February 8, 2010, 07:52 AM
Hmmmm, after all that it might be easier to have dirty brass? LOL

twice barrel
February 8, 2010, 08:18 AM
Funny thread. I've had the same thought ever since the vibratory "tumblers" came out. But then when I see the cases tumble around in the media (I used medium grit for a while :D) I realize it is a tumbler of sorts. Of course we could all call them "shakers". The first drum tumblers I ever saw were for rock hounds. But they were a wet media polisher and nothing I'd want for brass cleaning.

I don't care much what you call them. They're fun. We got along just fine without them yet everytime I've been without one I wanted one.

Regards,

TB

mcdonl
February 8, 2010, 08:39 AM
Come on, your confusing the new guy...

I want to buy one of these:

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/product/standard-item.jsp?_DARGS=/cabelas/en/common/catalog/item-link.jsp_A&_DAV=MainCatcat602007-cat20853_TGP&id=0012554212869a&navCount=2&podId=0012554&parentId=cat20853&masterpathid=&navAction=push&catalogCode=UK&rid=&parentType=index&indexId=cat20853&hasJS=true

It calls itself... a Vibratory Tumbler.

lol... will it clean my darned cases or what?

Remo-99
February 8, 2010, 08:59 AM
It calls itself... a Vibratory Tumbler.

lol... will it clean my darned cases or what?

The first thing you will notice when you turn it on is that it vibrates.
But upon closer inspection, you will also notice that cases are being tumbled about within the media.

Yes indeed, that will clean and polish brass cases. ;)

Walkalong
February 8, 2010, 09:03 AM
It'll clean em just fine, whatever you choose to call it. ;)

I have the Berrys version, as well as a Lyman. I like and use them both (http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=105230&d=1252783485). Different sizes for different jobs.

mcdonl
February 8, 2010, 09:11 AM
Thanks Guys! I am almost there... I need a puller, my book that I ordered to come in and some powder and I will be ready to go!!

bullseye308
February 8, 2010, 09:11 AM
Wow, just wow. This horse has been beaten. Move along, this wasn't the horse you were looking for.

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