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Author Topic: Cleaning brass cases  (Read 5524 times)

Offline mike116

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Cleaning brass cases
« on: May 21, 2016, 07:19:16 PM »
I like my cases to shine like new when I reload them.   Since I mostly load Black Powder cartridges the staining and residue is quite heavy.  I always drop my fired cartridges into a bucket of soapy water when possible which helps, but the brass is still heavily stained even after washing them.    I have read about lots of methods and recipes to achieve nice shiny cartridges but most were complicated and involved several steps and multiple ingredients.   I had heard recently that adding Meguire's Mirror Glaze (polishing compound) to the media in your case tumbler would polish the cases nicely.    So I went looking for some Meguire's at the local auto parts house.   The Meguire's compound was $14.00 for a 10 oz. bottle.   Then I noticed Turtle Wax Rubbing Compound was only $9.00 for an 18 oz. bottle so I decided to give the Turtle Wax a try.
Take a look at the photos for the results.   The 45-70 cases were tumbled for a couple hours in a cheap vibratory tumbler with crushed walnut shell medium and about 6 oz. of the Turtle Wax polishing compound.   Simple and cheap with excellent results,  my favorite way of getting things done.

Before


After 2 hours tumbling



Offline ssb73q

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2016, 07:44:11 PM »
Hi Mike, it looks like you discovered a good method of polishing brass cases, thanks for the tip.

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline Bishop Creek

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2016, 08:22:11 PM »
Looks really good. I'll have to try the Turtle Wax in my tumbler. Thanks for the tip.

Offline HAWKEN50

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2016, 08:30:32 PM »
I have used a little dab of Brasso in the media in mine,

Offline Fingers McGee

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2016, 08:39:13 PM »
I may just have to change my polishing compound.  Currently using Cabelas brand liquid.  Get similar results; but not as fast.
Fingers (Show Me MO smoke) McGee - AKA Man of Many Colts; SASS 28564-L-TG, rangemaster and stage writer extraordinaire; Frontiersman/Pistoleer, NRA Endowment Life, Central Ozarks Western Shooters
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Offline scooby

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2016, 09:11:25 PM »
I have used a little dab of Brasso in the media in mine,

I have been doing the same Hawken50 for a lot of years. Worked like a champ. However, my old vibratory tumbler gave up the ghost last summer and I bought one of those Franklin Arsonal roller tumblers that use the stainless steel pins. I find it to be the best thing since sliced bread and bubble gum. I shoot a whole lot of black powder cartridge and this system is the quickest and best thing so far. Just got done slicking up twenty 38-55 cases that I shot this afternoon and I now have some 12 gauge hulls in the canister getting polished. Every brass case so far comes out cleaner than factory brand new.

Offline Hawg

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2016, 11:04:34 PM »
I used to use Brasso but I'd put some in and run it without brass to get it mixed in and then let the ammonia evaporate before tumbling brass. It worked pretty good but I use Meguiars now. If you don't soak it right after shooting it may never come clean.
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for thou art crunchy and tasteth good with ketchup.

Offline mike116

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2016, 05:09:36 AM »
I have avoided Brasso due to the ammonia content.   The Frankford Arsenal set up Scooby mentioned looks excellent but the cost has kept me away.    If I were shooting more I think I would invest in that machine.

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2016, 11:22:51 AM »
Hi Mike, Amazon has the Meguiar's 15.2oz for $8.81:

http://www.amazon.com/Meguiars-G17216-Ultimate-Compound-15-2/dp/B001O7PNNM?ie=UTF8&psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00

And Turtlewax 18oz for $6.24:

http://www.amazon.com/Turtle-Wax-T-415-Premium-Compound/dp/B000NMDFNY/ref=sr_1_7?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1463941044&sr=1-7&keywords=rubbing+compound

Free shipping for Amazon Prime members.

I ordered the Meguiar's and will give it a try. The polishing compound I purchased from Midwayusa always settles out and needs to be mixed every time I want to use it. It will be nice not needing to mix the polishing compound.

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline mike116

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2016, 04:53:08 PM »
Richard,  that's a good deal if you are an Amazon prime member.   I quit buying from Amazon since they started charging sales tax to Colorado residents.   Seems they are building a shipping center in Denver so now must charge sales tax to anyone with a Colorado address.   

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2016, 10:16:46 AM »
Hi Mike, now that it is becoming reloading time for next year I started cleaning .45 Colt brass using Meguiar's. I am very impressed on how well it polishes the brass in the tumbler. Other than a spent primer and slight crimp still showing, the brass looks like brand new brass, maybe even better. Thanks for the great tip.

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline mike116

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2016, 02:31:48 PM »
Glad someone else is getting good results this way Richard.  Now you have reminded me I need to run a few batches through my tumbler.   I like to plug mine into a timer and let it run a couple hours while I'm gone.    When I get home I have nice new looking cases.

Online Captainkirk

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2016, 03:42:19 PM »
Glad someone else is getting good results this way Richard.  Now you have reminded me I need to run a few batches through my tumbler.   I like to plug mine into a timer and let it run a couple hours while I'm gone.    When I get home I have nice new looking cases.
Be cautious on that, Mike. More than one tumbler has caught fire left totally unattended, especially the Franklin Arsenal brand Midway sells (older ones, not the new ones). I will let mine run all day if I'm outside doing yard work or whatever, but never leave it totally unattended.
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Offline mike116

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2016, 05:39:59 PM »
Thanks for the warning Capt.   That's why I use a timer,  never more than a couple hours or so.   The same can be said for your washing, machine, dishwasher,  clothes dryer, space heaters, halogen light fixtures etc,  all of which get left on unattended.  Any electrical device poses a certain amount of risk.   

Online Captainkirk

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Re: Cleaning brass cases
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2016, 05:59:29 PM »
Thanks for the warning Capt.   That's why I use a timer,  never more than a couple hours or so.   The same can be said for your washing, machine, dishwasher,  clothes dryer, space heaters, halogen light fixtures etc,  all of which get left on unattended.  Any electrical device poses a certain amount of risk.   
Just wanted you to be aware. I believe there may have been a recall on them about ten years ago or so. They were catching fire and burning houses down (think about it; most people store their powder close by. I do.)
« Last Edit: November 07, 2016, 07:00:35 PM by Captainkirk »
"You gonna pull those pistols, or whistle Dixie?"