new to reloading, need advice on tumblers


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blitztech
April 9, 2013, 03:39 PM
Hello all,

I'm new to the forum and reloading and was just needing some advice on tumblers.

I'll be reloading 9mm, .223 & .308 in low quantities. I need a tumbler that can clean 100-250 casings at a time for a reasonable price. I'm willing to spend more for a better quality product and I have no experience using them. I've seen some that also say they are ultrasonic. Does this mean they don't tumble and are quieter? Any wisdom on the subject would be much appreciated. Thanks!

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FatboyHD
April 9, 2013, 03:52 PM
I bought the one from harbor freight, it's been a good one and not too bad price wise.

THe Dove
April 9, 2013, 03:53 PM
I'll be reloading 9mm, .223 & .308 in low quantities.

Based on this statement, I recommend the Lyman "Turbo Pro 1200" for around $70. I have been using one for over 20 years and it does me just fine.

Hope this helps.

The Dove

KansasSasquatch
April 9, 2013, 04:00 PM
Hello all,

I'm new to the forum and reloading and was just needing some advice on tumblers.

I'll be reloading 9mm, .223 & .308 in low quantities. I need a tumbler that can clean 100-250 casings at a time for a reasonable price. I'm willing to spend more for a better quality product and I have no experience using them. I've seen some that also say they are ultrasonic. Does this mean they don't tumble and are quieter? Any wisdom on the subject would be much appreciated. Thanks!
Ultra sonic cleaners don't used corn cob or walnut media like a tumbler. Instead they use a liquid solution and sound waves. There are store bought solutions that you mix with water or some people make their own blends. Then you have to rinse the brass in clean water and dry it. Tumbling is generally easier.

James2
April 9, 2013, 04:02 PM
I loaded for many years with no tumbler. I just wiped them off with a rag. Then my son, who polishes rocks, gifted me with a Lyman Turbo Pro 1200. (walnut media) I have been tumbling my brass for a couple of years now and this unit works fine. Something in this class would be good for your size of operation.

GT1
April 9, 2013, 04:10 PM
I have a 1200 twin tumbler. It is only a year old, I think it was $57 on Amazon at that time.

It is loud. When I use it I put it in the shower(small apt) and close the door. It will run 250 .223 cases easily, 2 hours and brass looks beautiful.

Vibratory tumblers are the way to go unless you have deep pockets and/or shoot a whole lot.

Cabela's sells a nice one I hear, so does Berry's(Berry's bullets), there has been good feedback on those(same manufacturer). I think Berry's has a deal with a separator too(A sieve that shakes out the tumbling media from the brass).

osage48
April 9, 2013, 04:53 PM
I agree vibrator cleaners are the way to go. I use fine grit walnut hulls from Harbor Freight with a squirt of Nu-Finish car polish from Wally world. Not my idea, but a good one! They come out bright and shiny.

jb27
April 9, 2013, 05:36 PM
Buy once, cry once (wish I would have)

http://www.stainlesstumblingmedia.com/stm-complete-package-2.html

Arkansas Paul
April 9, 2013, 06:08 PM
Brass sure looks good out of a rotary tumbler with stainless media, but drying brass always seemed like it would be a PITA to me.
I have a Lyman Pop Top vibratory tumbler with the clear lid. I like it, but it's small. We got it used is why we went with that one. If I were buying a new one today, I would go larger. The Lyman is a good one though.

gamestalker
April 9, 2013, 06:19 PM
I've been using a Ultra Vibe 10 for a long time. It's very quiet, and it is of high quality, they have a cooling fan and have an isolated motor, no oiling necessary. I think they are about $90? I run mine sometimes for several days straight.
Other than that, Harbor Freight has some that are quite affordable, they get the job done, from what I hear.

GS

MichaelK
April 9, 2013, 06:28 PM
I gave up on tumbling almost 20 years ago and never looked back.

I wash all my brass in cleaning solution made of 1 cup of vinegar in a gallon of water, plus a spurt of dish washing solution.

Soak the brass for an hour, rinse in water till there are no suds, and dry the brass in the sun.

Shiny brass doesn't shoot any straighter.

blitztech
April 9, 2013, 06:29 PM
Well this is all good info. I was looking at the Lyman's on midwayusa.com and they were getting a lot of comments about motors burning out quickly. I'm afraid that things aren't made as well as they used to be. I have a cabelas about 45 min from me and a harbor freight very close by. I will go check them out. Anyone bought a Lyman recently that's had trouble with it?

Uniquedot
April 9, 2013, 06:37 PM
Spend as much as you like...I have a Frankford arsenal and a Hornady tumbler and they both do the same thing. I was gifted another one from smart reloader and it was NIB. I used it only once and sold it as even though it was free I couldn't get past the fact that it was made (marketed) by SR, but believe it or not it was actually quieter than the Hornady or FA tumblers.

jim243
April 9, 2013, 06:40 PM
Lyman turbo twin that is 6 years old, works fine.

Jim

sellersm
April 9, 2013, 06:42 PM
Cabela's tumbler is made by Berry's. It's a good model and inexpensive. Even cheaper at Midsouth Shooters Supply, but rarely is it in stock...

You have a few options: vibratory, sonic (cleaner) and stainless media. The latter is probably the best overall for clean, shiny brass (inside & out).

Let your wallet decide. If you plan on loading more and more, then consider it as a longer-term investment, and plan accordingly.

Gadawg88
April 9, 2013, 06:46 PM
Check this: http://www.cabelas.com/product/Cabelas-Model-400-Vibratory-Case-Tumbler-Kit/731769.uts?Ntk=AllProducts&searchPath=%2Fcatalog%2Fsearch.cmd%3Fform_state%3DsearchForm%26N%3D0%26fsch%3Dtrue%26Ntk%3DAllProducts%26Ntt%3DTumbler%26x%3D0%26y%3D0%26WTz_l%3DHeader%253BSearch-All%2BProducts&Ntt=Tumbler&WTz_l=Header%3BSearch-All+Products

Cherokee
April 9, 2013, 07:09 PM
I bought a Midway vibrator unit 20 years ago and still use it 3-4 times a week. A few years ago I bought a second Midway/Frankfort vibrator kit with sifter - also works great.

2bfree
April 9, 2013, 08:49 PM
I have a Lyman 1200 and a Dillon CV-500. I use the Dillon most of the time as it is not nearly as loud as the Lyman. They both do the job.

carbuncle
April 9, 2013, 08:57 PM
I have the Cabela's model, and the media separator: both work great!

thump_rrr
April 9, 2013, 08:57 PM
Brass sure looks good out of a rotary tumbler with stainless media, but drying brass always seemed like it would be a PITA to me.
I have a Lyman Pop Top vibratory tumbler with the clear lid. I like it, but it's small. We got it used is why we went with that one. If I were buying a new one today, I would go larger. The Lyman is a good one though.
If you only have enough brass to shoot and reload right away then your money is better spent elsewhere.
If you have enough brass to wait a day then SS tumbling is the greatest.

I deprime, tumble, and towel dry after rinsing in hot water.
I then dump them in a bucket and reload them when I get around to it.

The brass is cleaner than tumbling in walnut or corn cob.
There is no dust like vibratory tumbling.
There is no media to wear out and need replacing.
There is no damned vibration like a vibratory tumbler.

Hondo 60
April 9, 2013, 09:04 PM
Based on this statement, I recommend the Lyman "Turbo Pro 1200" for around $70.

$70 ???? if you paid that much, you got ripped off.
It should run you about $55

and I agree, the Lyman 1200 Turbo Pro is a good one.
I have one & it's provided years of good use.

I even dropped it a couple of times.
cracked the cover & bent the rod, but it still runs.

NeuseRvrRat
April 9, 2013, 09:05 PM
Brass sure looks good out of a rotary tumbler with stainless media, but drying brass always seemed like it would be a PITA to me.

i've posted my drying method on here dozens of times. not sure why no one else seems to have thought of it.

i strain the water off and pour the brass out on a towel. pat off what you can with the towel. throw the brass in a mesh lingerie bag. sandwich one side of the bag in the top jamb of the clothes dryer door. run it 15-20 mins (maybe more or less for your particular dryer) and it'll come out ready to load. i'm told new dryers even have stationary racks for drying things like shoes, which would be another good way.

Lennyjoe
April 9, 2013, 09:06 PM
I've had a Frankford Arsenal tumbler for about 7 years now and it's been working great.

nix4me
April 9, 2013, 09:06 PM
I have the Cabelas / Berrys tumbler kit. Works great.

dab102999
April 9, 2013, 09:15 PM
Kempfs reloading has a tumbler,sifter, and a couple pounds of media for $59. I believe it is a frankfort tumbler. I was going to get one to back up my 20 year old layman when i picked up a used horandy...the layman is loud...the horandy is very quiet..

THe Dove
April 9, 2013, 09:18 PM
$70 ???? if you paid that much, you got ripped off.
It should run you about $55

I guess it's a good thing I said "around $70" and not "about $55"........

The Dove

markshere2
April 9, 2013, 11:12 PM
I ran thru ( burned out) a couple of vibratory tumblers in a couple of years.
the company replaced it once, then refunded my money. ( I got tired of paying shipping back).

I considered the mechanical aspect of a machine that is designed to try and shake itself to death, then went with a roller tumbler for noise and longevity.

I bought a 2 drum unit from Harbor freight. It lasted about 3 years, with several belt replacements. I wound up just going with a HD rubber band and replacing it once a week or so.

I use walnut lizard litter, and I spice it up with bon ami cleanser when it quits cleaning.
The lizard litter is small enough it doesn't get stuck in the primer holes.

A used dryer sheet in with the mix picks up some of the dust and dirt for zero cost.

Next I am gonna buy a thumbler tumbler.

sjd78
April 10, 2013, 11:49 PM
I have had a Cabelas tumbler for a couple years now. It's been used very heavily and still works like a champ!

Searcher4851
April 11, 2013, 04:04 PM
I have no qualms about my 30+ year old Thumler's Model B with them new fangled SS pins. The thing is built like a tank, and will probably outlast me.

maxyedor
April 11, 2013, 04:14 PM
Harbor Freight tumbler, pet store walnut and some nu-finish, use it until the tumbler wears out, then go get another one.

jackdaddycustoms
April 11, 2013, 09:36 PM
i use the hornady m2 with walnut media from a pet store and a little mothers polish in there. i also throw in some dryer sheets to cut down on dust. they work!

fatcpa
April 13, 2013, 03:52 PM
I have 2 Lyman 1200's that I run a lot, usually both at the same time with different caliber brass. I order 40 lbs of crushed corncob blast media from drillspot (drillspot.com) and it lasts almost a year, changing media often. Last I ordered cost $27 for 40 lbs. Dump a tablespoon or two of a good liquid car polish in the bowl and the brass shines up like new. I shoot a lot of 45 colt loaded with Trail Boss and it gets the brass pretty sooty sometimes. They clean up really well in 3-4 hours. As far as Lyman motors burning out, I haven't had that experience. Being old and forgetful, I've gone off for three or four days more that once and left my oldest 1200 running. It's still alive and shakes hard enought to walk all over my workbench when it's running. It and my tractor style lawn sprinkler tend to have minds of their own and go roaming quite a bit!

45lcshooter
April 13, 2013, 03:59 PM
Lyman 1200 for about 50.00 a few months ago. I let it run all night lo g in the reloading dungeon(Basement). Yes Lyman is loud. So if you don't have room for it to run during the day, it it in a closet and run it at night while your sleeping.

joecil
April 13, 2013, 04:50 PM
I have a Franklin Arsenal and buy my media (Walnut) from Harbor Freight even cheaper than the pet stores in 25 lb bags. Mine is a good 10 years old and still works fine.

4895
April 13, 2013, 06:34 PM
Here is the best deal ever.

http://www.eabco.com/store/reloading-supplies/berrys-tumbler-kit-2-tumbler-corncob-polish-rotary-sifter/

blitztech
April 18, 2013, 09:18 PM
I finally got one. Went with the cabelas tumbler. Basically same as previous poster and I paid the same + taxes to the tune of $84ish

carbuncle
April 18, 2013, 09:21 PM
This is all the same stuff I have, except Cabelas branded. Great buy, good kit and well worth the money IMO.

Posted from my car phone.

UnderTheGun
April 19, 2013, 11:02 AM
Buy once, cry once (wish I would have)

http://www.stainlesstumblingmedia.com/stm-complete-package-2.html

This is what I went with after using a vibratory for a while. This set up will clean almost anything off of brass. Drying is not much of a hassle, I run them in a separator and then give them a good shake in a towel and then let them sit and dry overnight. Also, I generally only tumble for 2 hours versus the recommended 4.

As others have mentioned I've also used the vinegar solution which works well.

I clean them once in the stainless media and then will shoot many loads before treating them again. While I don't need super shiny brass it does make it easier (IMO) to see defects.

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