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Light rust inside brass cases?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by PONTIACDM, Nov 4, 2011.

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  1. PONTIACDM

    PONTIACDM Member

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    I traded for some old 38 special brass from a co-worker. Inside some of the brass as well as the nickle there is some light rust in the walls. I tumbled it for 2 1/2 hours and it's still there. I'm using it in light wad cutter loads. My question is, use it or not? Thanks.
     
  2. BADUNAME37

    BADUNAME37 Member

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    To my knowledge, brass does not rust.

    I could be wrong, have been many times and will be again sometime.
     
  3. PO2Hammer

    PO2Hammer Member

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    When brass corrodes it turns a bright blue/green.
    What you're seeing is probably powder residue which can have many colors. It seems to happen most with long, low pressure cartridges like .38 spl and .44 spl.

    Tumbling does little to nothing inside the case.
     
  4. Fishslayer

    Fishslayer Member

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    I occasionally see brown/reddish spots on the outside of a case. Not really sure what causes it. They seem to reload fine.

    Some tumbling media additive contains jeweler's rouge, but I would imagine this would get blown out when fired.

    I've gotten reddish spots when I left brass in Lemi Shine too long. I'm told this was zinc leaching out of the brass. Those I tossed.

    For light .38 loads I'd use it myself.
     
  5. T Bran

    T Bran Member

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    If it dont stick to a magnet dont sweat it but if it really bugs you chuck a brass bore brush in the drill and give them a quick cleaning.
    LUCK
    T
     
  6. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    You may be just seeing dust residue from tumbler media.
     
  7. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    +1

    If you or the guy you got the brass from used red rouge treated media, thats all it is.

    Brass in a non-ferrous metal and does not / cannot rust.

    rc
     
  8. Hondo 60
    • Contributing Member

    Hondo 60 Member

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    +1 - you're most likely seeing incompletely burned powder residue or red rouge media treatment
     
  9. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    In the past I have seen a rust residue in and on brass/nickle casings. This was deposited there when brass was left in an old steel coffee can and rain water filled it and sat there for a whole summer. It polished off the outside OK but stayed on the inside. I loaded it and shot it---worked OK for me. Now I tumble with SS media. This has finally removed it along with any other crud from all my casings. This may be the cause of your rusty looking brass.
     
  10. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    Some S&B 9mm "brass" is just brass coated steel but I haven't noticed anyother caliber. As above run a magnet over it to make sure.
     
  11. PONTIACDM

    PONTIACDM Member

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    Thanks for all the info from everyone. I hate to retire brass. I'm glad to hear you guys say use it. I didn't think brass rusted but I couldn't think of anything else it could be. It passed the magnet test. Thanks
     
  12. Blue68f100

    Blue68f100 Member

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    Reddish/brown spots happen when the zinc has been leached from the brass. If these do not clear out when run through a tumbler/polisher I would send those to the scrap bin. It's an indication of the brass has been weakened. You see this with certain types of liquid cleaners in which the acid solution was not neutralized/rinsed properly after words.
     
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