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Best way to clean dies?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by blitztech, May 10, 2013.

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  1. blitztech

    blitztech Member

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    I'm new to reloading and after depriming roughly 400 casings I noticed the build up on my hornady depriming/sizing die. I wanted to know what's the easiest way to get this thing nice and shiny again. Hopefully something around the house that I can use.

    I took it apart and used some q-tips to wipe off the gunk, but its not perfect and after years spent in restaurants I like things clean and shiny. Am I asking for too much?
     
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Probably.

    I use a 3/4" nylon bottle brush I keep hanging over the bench to knock the badies out of the insides occasionally.

    WD-40 and a bore brush to get bullet lube out.

    Some folks suggest throwing them in your case tumbler for a like new look.

    rc
     
  3. bds

    bds Member

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    +1. In addition to what rcmodel posted, I also use Hoppes #9 solvent and it works well to remove lead lube grime from the dies.

    If you have light surface rust or want to keep your dies from rusting, after cleaning the inside of the dies, I tumble the die bodies and parts in walnut media treated with NuFinish car polish.

    The hard walnut media removes surface rust and residual NuFinish polish on the die surface prevents dies from rusting/keeps them shiny for 6 months - 1 year+.
     
  4. jwrowland77

    jwrowland77 Member

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    Pipe cleaner. Take it and fold it in half. Insert into die and clean. Use some hoppes on one and a little oil on another. That's how I clean mine. Works great too.
     
  5. 45lcshooter

    45lcshooter Member

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    I use Flitz and PB Blaster. Using and old rag.
     
  6. KansasSasquatch

    KansasSasquatch Member

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    Hornady "Gun Cleaner and Dry Lube." Spray it down and wipe with a q-tip or clean rag.

    Some people on the net will recommend using brake cleaner. Brake cleaner does a heck of a job cleaning metal but it can also etch it (not good at all), especially if combined with other chemicals.
     
  7. bobinoregon

    bobinoregon Member

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    When I buy used ones it's disassemble and throw them in the tumbler to clean them. For the ones I am using it's brake cleaner and Q-tips
     
  8. blarby

    blarby Member

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    I use BobinOregons method.

    Must be an Oregon thing :D

    Using a tumbling additive like NuFinish not only cleans the dies, but protects them against corrosion and other buildups.

    My hardest to remove buildup is cast bullet hard lube after about 1000 rounds of final assembly. I use a brass 20ga smoothbore brush and a torch :D Works like a charm.
     
  9. blitztech

    blitztech Member

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    Great, thanks for the ideas. I think I will try the gun solvent and old clothes then Polish with nufinish. Maybe try a little pb blaster. Down here in bayou country everything rusts so the protection will be optimal.
     
  10. JSmith

    JSmith Member

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    I take my depriming/sizing dies apart after every ~500 rds. or so and clean it with Shooter's Choice and a stiff brush, then wipe out with a couple of patches just as if it was a gun barrel.
     
  11. BYJO4

    BYJO4 Member

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    I use Hoppes and a Qtip to clean all my dies. Are you cleaning your brass before sizing?
     
  12. blitztech

    blitztech Member

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    Yes I'm cleaning before depriming.
     
  13. 1SOW

    1SOW Member

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    .

    Doesn't if you use "dechlorinated" brake cleaner. It's just an effective 100% evaporative degreaser. It can damage some plastics and is death to F.O. rods. :)
     
  14. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    Every so often I will clean my dies using Macs carb cleaner (NAPA product) and a Q-tip. Then chuck the parts into the tumbler with corn cob and NU-Finish. For a quick clean/lube I use PB Blaster and Q-tip. YMMV
     
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