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Cleaning fired brass

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by wristtwister, Apr 29, 2008.

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  1. wristtwister

    wristtwister Member

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    It's been a few years since I've reloaded much ammo, but I'm preparing to get back into reloading because I'm running out of co-signers to buy ammo at the shops.:uhoh:

    Eons ago, when corrosive ammo was all over the place, we washed the brass in a detergent solution before putting it into the polishing medium to clean it and take out the trace amounts of corrosive powders. Is that still a good method, or has cleaning improved with age as well as the firearms technology?

    I'd like to keep things simple and cheap... and years ago, a bottle of Dawn went a long way to saving your drum medium from getting used up, so I'm curious if anybody else still does that to clean up the once-fired cases?

    Just curious...:scrutiny:

    WT
     
  2. strat81

    strat81 Member

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    Some folks still do it. I just tried it and my results were okay. Seems better for removing case lube than cleaning the cases. My solution was approximately:
    2 cups warm water
    1/2 cup vinegar
    1 tsp of salt
    2 tbsp of Dawn

    I let the cartridges sit for 15 minutes, agitating them every 5 minutes or so. Dried them in the oven at 175* for 20 minutes. I forgot where I saw that recipe. I just guesstimated it from what I remembered.
     
  3. Encoreman

    Encoreman Member

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    I just shoot em, then put them in the vibratory tumbler and clean them. I have picked up some dirty cases, but not dirty enought I had to give them a bath first. LOL
     
  4. wristtwister

    wristtwister Member

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    The reason I asked...

    Years ago, when I was reloading, I didn't wash my cases until it scored one of the dies and ended up costing me a new carbide die. Unless the brass is really well cleaned, you can end up losing a die pretty easily... and most of the time, it's at night or on a weekend when you can't just run out to the supplier and get another one in that particular caliber.

    I ended up missing out on a competetive shoot because of it, so I'm sensitive to the rule of Murphy's law in reloading... when something can go wrong, it will be at the time when it can't be fixed in time to accomplish the mission.

    After that fiasco, I washed the cases and never had another problem... so even if it's not "required", it's still a pretty good idea if for no other reason than to protect your equipment. JMHO...

    WT
     
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    No!

    It takes to darn much time & effort to thoroughly dry cases inside after you wash them.

    In black powder & mercuric primer days, it was a necessary evil.

    Not anymore!

    Shoot them, tumble them, reload them!

    rcmodel
     
  6. primlantah

    primlantah Member

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    I tried using powdered dish detergent and cold water for a batch of cases to see how the results were. the cases dried quickly in my food dehydrator( :) ) but left plenty of hard water buildup on the inside. IMO its not worth it.
     
  7. tasco 74

    tasco 74 Member

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    what rc said!.....................................


    LIFE IS SHORT.....
     
  8. Jacka L Ope

    Jacka L Ope Member

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    No sitting for me. I set them awash, immediately and briefly agitate to clean, rinse, 20 minutes in the oven @ 200*. An efficient 30 minutes at tops though I still tumble in bulk here and there.
     
  9. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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