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Old May 5, 2006, 04:38 AM   #1
Join Date: April 15, 2006
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Best tumbling media?

So I'm getting my tumbler tomorrow and i was wondering what tumbling media gives you guys the best results? Also, i want to experiment with rough salt and maybe the gravel that comes in little fish tanks. Anyone try this? Will i require a solvent of some sort? Does anyone have any before and after tumbling pics? Thanks!
Shiny brass looks cooler!
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Old May 5, 2006, 05:28 AM   #2
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one is running while I type this........

Corn-cob media intended for case cleaning; Dillon Rapid Polish.

Trust me......
"all my ammo is mostly retired factory ammo"
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Old May 5, 2006, 05:36 AM   #3
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I use crushed walnut shells that I buy at the pet store. They sell it as bedding for lizards and it is a lot cheaper then the gun store's stuff.
Now as to salt and gravel?
I wouldn't use either on my brass. It simply doesn't ever get that dirty and even if it did, I think either of those would end up ruining it. If you want it shiny, as well as clean, just put a little paint thinner in with the media, but it really isn't necessary and frankly it stinks. You can also use jewelers rouge which doesn't stink.
When cleaning them, about all you need to do is remove some soot so you really don't need anything that is abbrasive.
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Old May 5, 2006, 09:31 AM   #4
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I use crushed walnut for a couple of hours to clean the brass. Then I use corn cob with polish for 30 min after prepping the brass. The corn cob with polish really makes it shiny. I have only tried a couple of different polishes and found them all to work the same so I have been using whatever is cheapest.
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Old May 5, 2006, 12:23 PM   #5
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Walnut and corn cob, half and half. Put some polish in while the media is tumbling (couple of tablespoons) and run it like that for 10 minutes or so. Then add your brass, and come back in 1-2 hours. Separate, lube and load. Go shoot......
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Old May 5, 2006, 01:00 PM   #6
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Lord knows what salt would do to brass. Long term exposure tarnishes heavily. I would not use anything hard enough to scratch a die or a chamber because a few particles are bound to stick.

I'm using ground walnut hulls because I have a big supply. Main problem is that it sticks in the flash holes something fierce. I have an air compressor in the shop that takes care of that in short order, but it might be a problem for someone else.
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Old May 5, 2006, 02:11 PM   #7
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Walnut, or tufnut as lyman calls it, works as good as corncob, but last longer in my opinion. I find it easier to just clean my primer pockets by hand, all the media i've tried gets lodged in the pocket.
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Old May 8, 2006, 02:14 AM   #8
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I started tumbling and have tried a few different media.

I first tried dry rice as my new tumbler arrived early and wanted to try it out. That sucked. Took 4-5 hrs. for a dusty dirty noisy shine. Better than nothing...almost!

I had some assorted nut shells ("crack yr own nuts" ... the kind you eat, over the x-mas holidays) that I save to use in my wood stove to start a fire. I crushed them up a little with a hammer, but they were too big and too much work. Decided to save them for the stove.

Walnut shells from the pet store, run for about 2 hrs. and then switch to ground corn cob (also from the pet store) for about 1 hr. This has worked good for me. I have heard that lighter fluid works well in place of special brass polish goo but have not tried it yet.

If you can get to a discount pet store, that could be the best deal IMO. Buy cheep and change the media more often. FWIW
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