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Decapping 38 Special and 357 Magnum...(thanks to Mr Noisy!) ...I wet tumbled the 38 Special first. As my solution includes a splash of Dawn, a dash of LemiShine and a capful of ArmorAll Car Wash compound with wax I decided to reload the tumbler with the same solution. I screened the brass in the rotating tumbler basket, shook it down and set it aside. Poured the used solution back into the tumbler with the 357 brass along with scooping the soapy pins from the bottom of the bucket and they are now spinning around.

I'll know in a couple of hours if it's possible to stretch the cleaning compounds out. It may depend on how much carbon/dirt are on the cases...the 38 Special brass didn't look too bad.
 

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Definitely keep us posted. I was planning on doing the same thing, but wanted to have a fairly substantial amount of brass to make it worth doing :)
 
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Agreed, it will be interesting to see if the cleaning action still works on a second go round.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I will do it again, worked like a charm. Less than 3 hours spinning and the water rinsed out more green than before, but the result is good. This will help stretch the LemiShine and the auto polish.

20180505_152059_1525551914137_resized.jpg 20180505_152153_1525551912949_resized.jpg
 

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I have been impressed with the pin tumbling. I bought a Lyman separator, but haven't used it yet (been a couple of months) I think it will work a lot better than separating by hand.

After buying the rotary tumbler, I did all the brass I had, I didn't think to reuse the juice. It was pretty nasty when I drained it.
 

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It would be great to keep running tallies of what type of brass and how many you're able to tumble clean per load of cleaner.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It would be great to keep running tallies of what type of brass and how many you're able to tumble clean per load of cleaner.
I probably won't go more than two rounds with a load of juice. Like Bellows says, I have had brass which was very carboned up and the liquid was very black. The loads today were smaller loads, maybe 200 or less per caliber and wasn't that black. It is something to keep in mind as the Lemishine and car wash compound run 5-7 bucks per bottle.
 

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To find the definitive answer to how much brass a load of juice will clean, keep using your blackened juice until it fails to clean your brass. You might be surprised and get another load or two of cleaned brass.
 

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I have seen videos on Youtube where they just used water to tumble the brass and it came out clean. To me the soap just give something for the dirt to cling to and help suspend it in the water. The Lemi Shine may or may not help shine up the brass, since I only use an 1/8 tsp per batch a bottle of Lemi Shine lasts me over 5 years and I clean a lot of brass.

What benefit does the car wax give you?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have seen videos on Youtube where they just used water to tumble the brass and it came out clean. To me the soap just give something for the dirt to cling to and help suspend it in the water. The Lemi Shine may or may not help shine up the brass, since I only use an 1/8 tsp per batch a bottle of Lemi Shine lasts me over 5 years and I clean a lot of brass.

What benefit does the car wax give you?
When I first began washing brass, even before I got a vibratory tumbler and did dry media, I would use an acid to assist in cleaning along with Dawn detergent. The brass came out brilliantly, but would tarnish in just a few days as everything was stripped off (including some of the alloy, but that's another story). I tried adding Nu Finish to the mix then when swirling the brass in the acid/Dawn but it wasn't satisfactory since it was hard to dissolve. When I began wet pin tumbling, I had some of the tarnishing and researched to find that the car wash liquid with wax helps remedy the situation.
 
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I use some dirty powders AND I tend toward heavy loads in the tumblers. The gorp that comes out at the end would probably be hopeless on run X2!

Why stick with dirty powders? Well, I hoped they might ‘clean up’ as I refined the rounds. They didn’t — BUT they are very accurate and consistent SO I take the good with the bad. My 9mm match load with Alliant Bullseye is a big offender and I shoot it a lot. At 3.7 gr. - un-burned powder is not the problem.

Such is life!
 

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It's one thing to do it with brass but I think you are just taking it too far now CB!

dirty.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
^^ Makes my armpits shiny!!
 

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As FNKL said, 1/8 tsp per 2 lb load, is all it costs me to clean brass. The wife supplies the dawn of which I use 2 Tbls per load. It's not worth my time to do a load over, because I got cheap.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Maybe that's my problem...I don't measure. I seldom measure when I cook either! :rolleyes:

I use just a squirt of Dawn...can't be more than a tsp. I cut back the amount of LemiShine...was using more than a 1/8 and that stuff if pricey. The water I use can't be more than a gallon. When I first got the FA Platinum tumbler I would overload it with water, it wouldn't spin right, and then have to pour some out...not fun.
 

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Be careful what liquid chemicals you expose brass to. I know that some will weaken the brass and reduce life, or at least I've read that on the net and we all know the net can't be wrong. :laugh:

I'm gonna get me some of them pins if I can find 'em anywhere, but ebay.
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Be careful what liquid chemicals you expose brass to. I know that some will weaken the brass and reduce life, or at least I've read that on the net and we all know the net can't be wrong. :laugh:

I'm gonna get me some of them pins if I can find 'em anywhere, but ebay.
When I began washing brass I tried using dilute phosphoric acid, concrete etch stuff, to do a better job. I noticed silver spots on the cleaned brass...alloy separation caused by the acid.

I quit that immediately.
 

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Czechbikr wrote:
I cut back the amount of LemiShine...was using more than a 1/8 and that stuff if pricey.
The weak acid is what provides the electrical gradient to reduce the surface oxidation of the brass. If you use less acid, you need longer exposure time; if you use more acid you need less time. I use a full teaspoon in about 1.5 quarts of hot water for a soak of fifteen minutes. If I were to leave the cases in that solution for a prolonged period of time, the brass would turn black, tan, or a sort of orange depending on the particular acid being used. If the brass has just started to turn color, the discoloration is limited to the surface and can be removed by tumbling again.

The common weak acids used for tumbling brass (acetic = vinegar, citric = lemishine, oxalic = bar keeper's friend) will not damage brass with reasonable exposure times.

Weak acids can be used to "chemically mill" non-ferrous metals to precise dimensions, but exposure times are long. For example, immersion in vinegar can be used to simultaneously reduce both the inside and outside thickness of brass cartridge case necks; saving the trouble of both neck reaming and neck turning wildcat cartridges like the 5.7mm Johnson. But to obtain the desired reduction of 10/10,000 to 14/10,000 inch takes 70 to 120 hours.
 

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YEA!
What HD said!
mean while back at the farm I am placing some brass in my old vibratory tumbler with some corn cob media and waiting a couple of hours for it to finish, while I place lemon juice in my sweet Ice tea.
ahh yes the quiet , easy laid back life of the true Southerner.
 
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