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2 Odd Pieces of 308 brass

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by lencac, Jun 23, 2013.

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  1. lencac

    lencac Member

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    Hi Guys:
    I just received from Midway 250 "once-fired" military brass. So I tumbled it in my tumbler that uses the SS pin as media. This thing works great. Turns range brass in to what appears to be new brass, inside and out. Granted the prep and clean-out are a bit more involved than using dry media, but I think the results are awesome!
    Anyway, I'm sorting out the brass and resizing. Almost instantly upon rinsing of the brass in the sink my eyes gazed upon two distinctively colored casings.
    I said to myself ................. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
    As all clean brass has a yellowish shine to it these two misfits have a curious reddish hue to them. I immediately quarantined this pair of reddish rabble.
    Upon further inspection :scrutiny: I notice these two perps didn't even have the same tink sound when clanged together as the normal examples.
    Then the clincher, I sized 'em.:cuss: Took noticeably, I mean a lot more effort to run these two hoodlums through my Rock Chucker.:what:
    They are both LC brass, one "08" and one "09"
    Any thoughts? :confused:
     

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  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Probably laid out in the rain longer on some military range before they were picked up.

    Some of the zinc leached out of them.

    rc
     
  3. greyling22

    greyling22 Member

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    That's what you get for cleaning them so well. If you left a nice protective layer of crud on them you might never have noticed. I have some 9's, 30 carb's, and 30/30's that did that. Far as I can tell them load and shoot fine.
     
  4. Conservidave

    Conservidave Member

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    put a magnet up to them..... I have seen before what looks like copper cases that turned out to be plated steel. I figured it was some sort of Euro rounds.

    Dave,
     
  5. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    I think that RC is on the right track there. I bet they laid in a mud puddle for a few months and what was in the water ate the zinc out of the surface of the brass. I also clean my brass in SS pins and have seen some brass like that on one side or the other but to have it be completely like that it was probably submersed for a good bit. I had some 308 brass that was outside at a friends range for about 3 years that ended up that way on the side that was in the grass and the whole thing was tarnished to a bronze color before I cleaned them. FWIW I have seen "brass colored" steel casings but all the LC brass I have been able to handle to date (late as LC 13) has been indeed made out of brass.
     
  6. Havok7416
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    Havok7416 Member

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    Load 'em up! I have a small pile of LC brass that looks just like it. Just discoloration of the brass as previously stated.

    This is Lake City headstamp brass, so it is actually brass or I would have said the same thing.
     
  7. kerreckt

    kerreckt Member

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    I have run across this in the past. I reloaded them like any other cases. No problems. I attributed it to being exposed to the elements for a long time. Whether this is right or wrong I don't know. I do know they functioned just fine.
     
  8. lencac

    lencac Member

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    I agree :cool: Then if left exposed to the elements and this discoloration occurred then would the discoloration be a result of electrolysis? :eek:
    That's what me thinks: But only 2 out of 250?
     
  9. medalguy

    medalguy Member

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    Very possible. I've bought scrap brass from government surplus sales, and I've found all kinds of things in the containers of brass. Dead birds, water bottles (plastic), live ammo, all manner of trash that should have been cleaned out, but then, they do sell by the pound.

    It's very possible the brass did lie in the ground for a while. Alkaline soil will tarnish brass very quickly, and water added to the right acidic soil might very well dissolve some of the zinc in the cases.
     
  10. BullfrogKen

    BullfrogKen Moderator Emeritus

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    What rc said.
     
  11. lencac

    lencac Member

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    Thanks for the reply. I would agree that the brass was stragglers left out in the elements to die a long and torturous death.
     
  12. brickeyee

    brickeyee Member

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    Long term mild acid exposure will leach out the zinc leaving behind the copper.
     
  13. lencac

    lencac Member

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    I do believe that leaching process is known as electrolysis with casing being the cathode or anode, yes?
     
  14. brickeyee

    brickeyee Member

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    "I do believe that leaching process is known as electrolysis with casing being the cathode or anode, yes?"

    No, simple acid attack on the zinc.
     
  15. Catpop

    Catpop Member

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    Should we be concerned with the loss of zinc from the brass affecting its strength? It sure does underwater when affected by electrolysis. Catpop, commercial diver.
     
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