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Old May 14, 2012, 10:33 PM   #1
OkieGentleman
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Tumbling loaded ammo!!

I ran into this statement in an article and am looking for opinions from the more knowledgeable members of this forum.

Never tumble live ammunition to make the cases brighter. Never fire any ammunition you suspect as having been tumbled to be cleaned. Tumbling can potentially pulverize the powder granules. As powder granule size is a means of controlling the burning rate, pulverizing them can significantly increase chamber pressures.


Input if you please, sounds reasonable.
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Old May 14, 2012, 10:38 PM   #2
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I tumbled some rifle ammo I was in a hurry to load, and it still had the case lube on them. Lube on cases would have made them more dangerous in the chamber than tumbling them would have.

Oh and there are some folks that tumbled loaded ammo for days, and it all shot just fine. As well as you will hear the factories tumble finished ammo to remove the lube as well.
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Old May 14, 2012, 11:05 PM   #3
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False information, if this were in fact the case, shipping ammo all over the world for our military would obviously have degraded the powder to the point of being unusable, which of course is not the case at all.

Where did you come across this info? It has been disproved numerous times. Old wifes tale, Internet rumor, etc., etc.
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Old May 14, 2012, 11:17 PM   #4
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I've seen a test here (or THR, I don't remember) where someone tumbled ammo for the better part of a week. Other than being very shiny it shot the same as untumbled ammo. Powder granules are tougher than they look. Try to mash one some time.
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Old May 14, 2012, 11:39 PM   #5
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Thanks

OK Thanks for the replies.
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Old May 15, 2012, 12:22 AM   #6
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Here's a link to the excellent article on tumbling loaded ammo on AR15.com:

http://www.ar15.com/forums/t_1_5/989...nds_in_OP.html

I've been tumbling loaded ammo for about twenty years and never experienced the slightest problem with it. Some old wives' tales never seem to die.
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Old May 15, 2012, 02:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
I've been tumbling loaded ammo for about twenty years and never experienced the slightest problem with it.
That's a long time, twenty minutes should be plenty...

(Yes, I know what he meant.)
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Last edited by Sport45; May 15, 2012 at 03:21 AM.
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Old May 15, 2012, 03:14 AM   #8
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Another internet rumor that has been repeated enough time that it is generally accepted as fact.

I tumble live rounds and have never had a problem.
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Old May 15, 2012, 04:30 AM   #9
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time to tumble my old dirty carry ammo.
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Old May 15, 2012, 05:46 AM   #10
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Heard all the rumors about tumbling turning powder into dust and changing burn rate. Also heard tumbled for a week no effect . Even pulled the bullets to compare powder.
But I have never heard I went to the range today and my gun blew up. I’ll never tumble live ammo again. Not even once !! I have always tumbled finished live rounds unless they had a pointed soft lead tip. (didn’t want to bugger up the point)
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Old May 15, 2012, 11:29 AM   #11
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Quote:
Another internet rumor that has been repeated enough time that it is generally accepted as fact.
Well, I don't think it's just an internet rumor; seems like I remember reading a statement like this in either my Lyman? or Speer? manual. I'll check to see if I can find the reference.

We harp on and on about "read your reloading manual," only to find that perhaps our manual contains bogus information? However, I don't recollect the author referring to their definitive testing which proved the powder breaks down or which type of powder pulverizes to explosive dust. Now I’m wondering, since my manuals are new, if maybe the author got his information off the internet?

Just in case my powder is getting busted, I think I’ll start transporting the rounds in egg crates for the hour trip to the range.
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Old May 15, 2012, 11:44 AM   #12
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Personally, I would be nervous about tumbling loaded ammo for long periods of time, however, a short stint in the tumbler to pull off last minute lube or fingerprints sounds reasonable to me.

What have YOU chosen to do after receiving so many responses?
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Old May 15, 2012, 01:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Well, I don't think it's just an internet rumor; seems like I remember reading a statement like this in either my Lyman? or Speer? manual. I'll check to see if I can find the reference.
Remember these companies also MUST protect themselves from the lawyers.

Also most gun manufactures say in their manuals, not to shoot reloads or reloaded ammo. Same reason.
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Old May 15, 2012, 02:42 PM   #14
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To Tumble or not To Tumble That Is the Question!

I guess if I need to clean them of lube after reloading I will tumble them, but only long enough to clean the lube off. You need to know I wear both belt and suspenders and I always cut the fuse an extra inch when I cut it off.
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Old May 15, 2012, 04:40 PM   #15
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This exact information was in the instructions on the last tumbler I bought.
There were more pages of CYA than instructions.
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Old May 15, 2012, 05:06 PM   #16
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I tumble all of my rifle ammo to clean the lube off. In six years I have never had a problem. If it was bad to tumble loaded ammo then you think the big ammo manufactures would stop, yes they tumble all loaded ammo before it's packaged.
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Old May 15, 2012, 05:14 PM   #17
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Nothing but rumor. Imagine the "tumbling" that powder endures on its train/plane/ship/truck ride from the manufacturer to you.
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Old May 15, 2012, 05:29 PM   #18
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Should there be a warning about pouring into a powder measurer and back into the container several times ???
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Old May 15, 2012, 06:37 PM   #19
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Here is a good read.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=498890
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Old May 15, 2012, 07:16 PM   #20
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Ummm.....factories tumble loaded ammo all the time. How do you think they get it so shiny for packaging.

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Old May 15, 2012, 09:18 PM   #21
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PizzaKilla

Reference: Lyman, third edition, Pistol & Revolver Handbook, page 23, column 2, paragraph 2
"Loaded ammunition, and primed cases, should never be tumbled.."

Like I said, not just rumor, but in print. Makes one wonder if the rumor started with the print or the print started the rumor?

Anyhoo, I'm just loading pistol rounds and am to lazy to even clean the Imperial wax of them.
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Old May 15, 2012, 09:20 PM   #22
Brian Pfleuger
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Oh, I never doubted it was there. I just doubt the rationale.
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Old May 16, 2012, 12:03 AM   #23
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I do it all the time.

Right now, I have a long term test going on (as many others have done). Some of the loaded rounds in my tumbler have been making laps around its bowl for more than 130 hours, and I wouldn't hesitate to fire them. In fact, I plan to.
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Old May 16, 2012, 12:33 AM   #24
jcwit
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Quote:
Reference: Lyman, third edition, Pistol & Revolver Handbook, page 23, column 2, paragraph 2
"Loaded ammunition, and primed cases, should never be tumbled.."
Ya, I've read that long time ago, but the ammo factories do it, and as I said earlier, the companies need to protect themselves from the lawyers. and the courts.

Since when did we start beliving everything we read?
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Old May 16, 2012, 06:52 AM   #25
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If you read the owners manual of any new center fire it will tell you that you don’t need that Lyman Handbook.
I still think if it was that dangerous you would be able to find at least one case of a KB that stated tumbling was to blame. If anyone can find one this would be good place to post it. Even the number of people here that do it someone should have had a problem. The question comes up a lot but I haven’t seen anything to change my mind. Show me some bloody fingers , a Glock all busted up or at least a small blister on something.
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