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Old January 8, 2006, 04:25 PM   #1
Smokey Joe
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Cleaning FL sized cases--No Hassle!

In a thread about this, earlier, someone stated that case lube would gunk up the polishing medium in a tumbler, and therefore that lubed and resized cases should not be cleaned that way. The medium was claimed to ball up and stick together.

Scientist that I am, I just had to try it to see how bad it was. I started by tumbling the cases in ground corncob to clean them up after firing, as is my standard practice. Then lubed these clean cases with RCBS Case Lube-2 and deprimed & FL sized them. Then the experiment began.

Surprise! When I put about 180 cases of resized 7.62x39, all with case lube on them, into the tumbler after FL sizing them, turned the tumbler on, and left it for an hour or more, the cases came out smooth, not lubed at all, and as far as I could determine, ready to prime, load, and fire. The cleaning/polishing medium used was ground corncob, a batch which I have been using for a couple years with good satisfaction for case cleaning/polishing. I had thrown in perhaps a dozen 1x1" gun cleaning patches along with the corncob, as I had heard somewhere that these absorb the dirt and gunk from the cases and the medium stays cleaner. These patches have gone from white to quite gray over the time they have been in with the medium. The medium has seemed to stay clean and effective.

Conclusions: In this instance, at least, RCBS case sizing lube did not seem to have any bad effect on the cleaning/polishing medium at all. The cases were effectively cleaned of lube in about an hour of tumbling. After the lube was removed from the cases by tumbling them, the ground corncob medium appeared to be in the same condition as before: Loose, flakey, seemingly clean, and ready for the next session. The use of a dozen or so cotton cloth gun cleaning patches in with the tumbling medium may have contributed to maintaining the tumbling medium in usable condtion.

So there you are, FWIW. As a scientist, I have to hope someone else will independently try the same experiment, and duplicate my results.
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Old January 9, 2006, 06:57 PM   #2
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That's the way I do it, works great. Been using the same batch of corn cob media to remove lube for over 2 years, no problems at all.
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Old January 10, 2006, 06:34 AM   #3
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+1 Smokey Joe
I have used corn cob for years without changing it, I dont bother with the patches but I do use RCBS polish powder, I just add enough to start the media and cases tumbling properly ( you can see it as you add it when its running) and top up when they stop tumbling properly. The only change I made was to buy an ultrasonic cleaner bath. I use a non acidic or ammonia based cleaner added to the water and clean all the cases before re sizing them ( I do deprime with a RCBS deprimer die) and they come out like the day they were made after 15 minutes. I resize using RCBS case lube and then use the corn cob to finish off. Better than new every time !
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Old January 12, 2006, 06:26 PM   #4
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Inside out from me. I decap separately with a Lee universal decapping die on an old Challenger press (they're always good for odd operations). I then clean and polish the cases in treated corn cob media to maximize sizing die life. I tumble after sizing in untreated corn cob to clean the lube off. It seems to work fine whether I am using spray lube or Imperial Sizing Wax. The untreated corn cob isn't packing up with dirt or brass at that point, so it is easier to see when it is running out of lube absorbing capacity.

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Old January 15, 2006, 12:31 AM   #5
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Corn cob works very well to remove lube. It seems to last forever without build up.

One supplier claims that walnut is best for cleaning and corn is best for polishing. I tend to agree.
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