Frankford arsenal tumbler help


May 4, 2013, 12:52 PM
I purchased one of the frankford arsenal tumblers and for now I am sorry I did.
I purchased after watching this video

But instead of the tumbler action like this one mine just spins around in circles. I have tried different's amounts of brass and media with them all performing the same. I literally have to let the tumbler run for 12 hours or more even with nufinish added where in my berry's it only takes an hour.

I have had the bottom off and the weight and everything is tight. Did I put the bowl onto tight or something when I assembled? I am getting very frustrated with it.

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May 4, 2013, 02:05 PM
"But instead of the tumbler action like this one mine just spins around in circles. "

I don't have a clue what you mean. How can a tumbler just spin around in circles, it would quickly wrap itself up in the power cable?

May 4, 2013, 02:49 PM
Are you saying that the brass spins in circles instead of down the middle and up the sides, or the entire tumbler is spinning in circle?

May 4, 2013, 05:27 PM
LOL the media and cases on the inside :) not the bowl itself.

What you said howland, instead of going up the sides and falling down in the middle. The media stay level and it all just spins in a circle instead of creating the cavity in the middle like in the video.

May 4, 2013, 05:54 PM
Send it back, I have the same model and works great..

May 4, 2013, 06:56 PM
If you thread the rod in too far it can cause what you described. Try backing it out a little. I had one that did a good job, ran it for about 8 hrs a week for about 4 yrs. befor the motor finally went out.

May 4, 2013, 07:12 PM
what caliber of cases and how many are you trying to clean at one time?

May 4, 2013, 09:32 PM
FA tumbler was one of the biggest p.o.s.'s I've ever owned. The media separator works great, still use it. But the tumbler died quickly.

May 5, 2013, 06:20 AM
I had that happen once. I had tried to put to much brass in it. About 450 45LC's. It works much better with 250-300 rnds. I have been using same FA tumbler for 9 years. No issues. 3 hours does the trick and thats with Unique loads and they get pertty dirty.

May 5, 2013, 08:50 AM
I have tried it with as little media as 40% full with only 10 cases of 38 special. I figured if I had to go lower than that it was not worth using.

I may have tried to thread the center rod in to far I am going to back that out right now to see if it makes a difference.

May 5, 2013, 09:27 AM
The media in my Frankfort only goes about half as fast as the one shown in the video. I might have to take the advice of not turning the rod in as far like J2FlAN suggested.

May 5, 2013, 09:33 AM
No problem with mine in two years of use by me and I got it as part of a used stuff I bought when I started reloading and it was about 5 years old and used often by the previous owner. Never missed a beat.

May 5, 2013, 09:53 AM
Pulled out the instructions again, it says run the rod into the bowl until it bottoms out. I went ahead and loosened the nut and back the rod out about two full turns and re-tightened the nut. The tumbling action seems to be faster but still the brass just circles the bowl instead of rolling from the outside of the bowl and falling to the center like my other two tumblers. I think it is a design flaw with the bowl itself, guess I have to live with it.

May 5, 2013, 10:50 AM

Does the media at least tumbles in yours like it does in the video or does it just circle?

May 5, 2013, 11:14 AM
I'd look that there's no packing/shipping pieces stuck between the bowl and base. And if yours has springs that they're fully free.
Something isn't letting the motor vibrations travel through the bowl.

Either that or see if they'll replace the thing for you.
It ain't any good as it is.

May 6, 2013, 05:19 AM
I went back and watched the video and no, mine does not seem to go that fast. But it does clean them good in about 3 hours. Considering I am using Unique lighter loads and have blowback, I am ok with it.

May 6, 2013, 10:24 AM
My Midway tumbler, that I bought right after the changed the bowl shape,works like you said yours does. It seems to clean the brass as fast as the old style.
After watching the video you referenced I went to the shop and removed the center screw, replaced it a little tighter, and now acts like the one in the video.

Not sure it clean's faster.

Peter M. Eick
May 6, 2013, 07:42 PM
I find it interesting that my old Midway 1292 (pre-frankford) still hangs in there. Gets used weekly and other than one wire breaking off the motor a few years back (maybe 5 or so) it just keeps running and running. Why is it that some older Midway stuff lasts for years and others fail quickly?

May 6, 2013, 08:35 PM
My Frankfort arsenal does the same thing. I equate it to a spinning washing machine...just goes around in circles.

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2

May 6, 2013, 08:52 PM
Ok its not just me then.

May 6, 2013, 11:29 PM
I had the FA tumbler and got a lot of use out of it but after a while one of the mounting bolts on the bottom of the bowl came loose from the molded plastic and the tumbler became very loud and uneven tumbling resulted. I took the thing back to the store I bought it from and traded for a Berry's and have been ok since than.

May 7, 2013, 09:01 AM
My tumbler acts like that if I try to operate it with the cover off.

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