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Old January 8, 2013, 01:44 PM   #1
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Brass Safety Questions

I'm a new to reloading and I want to make sure I don't use unsafe brass, but I also don't want to waste it. I recently purchased a large amount of 5.56 once fired Lake City brass. The lot was in excellent condition, so I purchased some more. The second batch was dirty, some rusted from a metal 50 gallon barrel that leaked water, it had green corrosion, etc. I washed the bad cases and the green corrosion wasn't deep, most of the dirt and rust came off, but the casings were stained. I soaked them in Lemi Shine for a few hours and tumbled them. Some of the cases look good and have no visible corrosion or pitting, but others are still stained and feel smooth without pitting.Needless to say, can I safely reload the cases that don't have any corrosion now? Is it ever safe to reload brass that had a very small amount of green corrosion but was removed after tumbling? Ive noticed some nice looking cases occasionally have a little green corrosion on the inside from humidity but it tumbles clean.

Should I make the final determination about whether or not brass is safe after tumbling, or always toss it if there's a few signs of green corrosion?

Lastly, the seller immediately sent me a replacenent shipment of good brass to replace the second batch of crap.

Thanks in advance for your help. I'll gladly post pics if you're interested.
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Old January 8, 2013, 01:55 PM   #2
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The staining I mentioned is usually mottled areas of a tarnished brass brown color and/or the inside of the case is still black like gunpowder didnt tumble out completely. Some stains are a slight pink from the Lemi Shine. I tumbled the cases in walnut with a dash of mineral spirits.
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Old January 8, 2013, 02:45 PM   #3
William T. Watts
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Don't use ammonia or Brasso

I don't like using a product that leeches out the zinc, if I do (vinegar) it's for 15 minutes or less then rinse immediately. When the cases turn pink you have over done it, since the company sent you a replacement lot of brass I probably would recycle and mark it up to a learning experience. William
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Old January 8, 2013, 03:13 PM   #4
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With tumbling in media the inside of the case won't really get cleaned out so expect the inside to be black from gunpowder.

But since you are getting a replacement lot of sort out any that are good and those that are questionable. Keep the good and toss the questionable. Or send them to me I could use some brass to practice converting to 300blk with
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Old January 8, 2013, 03:29 PM   #5
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Me personally, any case I come across that has the green corrosion looking stuff, I'll tumble, then if it still looks all splotchy, I put directly into my recycle bucket.
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Old January 8, 2013, 03:42 PM   #6
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I wet tumble with stainless steel pins. It clean the inside and out as well as the primer pockets.

When I run into brass like that mentioned above it comes out looking like new.
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Old January 9, 2013, 12:08 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the info and help!
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