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Old January 24, 2012, 11:01 AM   #16
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Join Date: November 8, 2007
Posts: 2,001
Gritty range brass

When using range brass that has mud, etc. in it, I have found that it often also has some grit that is embedded in the brass. Probably happens when somebody stepped on it or it hit concrete hard when ejected. My rotary tumbler with dry walnut media was NOT good at getting the EMBEDDED particles off brass that I picked-up, so I had to do a LOT of inspection to be sure that I would not use a piece that would scratch my dies or guns.

To solve that problem, I switched to wet tumblig with stainless steel pins, water and soap. That removes embedded grit and everything else. If you deprime first, the primer pockets get completely clean, as does the inside of the case. So, now I deprime on a separate (cheap Lee C-type) press using a universal decapping die that doesn't touch the brass, then wet-tumble the brass, let it dry, and it is like using new brass as far as cleanliness is concerned. It also dries faster if you have the primers out.

I don't think you can wet tumble with the vibrating type tumblers, just the rotary types. So, you need to decide if you want to do this BEFORE you choose a tumbler.

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