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Old July 12, 2012, 04:59 PM   #7
Senior Member
Join Date: November 8, 2007
Posts: 2,001
I think it depends on what brass you are reloading, and how dirty it gets.

When loading for revovlers and bolt action rifles, my brass never touched the ground at the range. And, I never felt an NEED to tumble it to make clean it enough or shiny.

Then I started shooting centerfire auto-loaders that spit my brass into the dirt or bounced it off of concrete pads at high velocity. And, I started finding other people's brass that was clogged with dirt. Washing that stuff often left detectable grit on the brass that had been slightly embedded by the velocity of impact or being stepped on by myself or others before I picked it up.

I do not want grit in my dies or guns. So, I tried washing, then tumbling in walnut, but still found that I needed to do careful inspection for embedded grit. That was time consuming. So, eventually I went to wet tumbling with stainless steel pins. That takes the grit off for sure, so that I don't need to feel each piece of brass for grit. It is also very easy to do, but a tad pricey to start.

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