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Discussion Starter #1
I just got a tumbler recently and started to clean my cases. I noticed that the outside brass is shinny like new but the inside is still dirty. How important is it to get everything out off the cases? I have luck running .45acp through it for around six hours and the inside is just like the outside. Is this what is needed or just preferred?
 

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ive reloaded dirty cases before with no problems, as long is there is no real big gunk in the case and the primer pocket and hole is clean and clear. Its more a preference
 

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I tumble mine until the outside is shiny and looks new. I don't care what the inside looks like... if the outside is that clean, the inside is fine. I don't lube my pistol cases, and I use carbide dies, so the cleaner and shinier they are, the easier they work in the die. ;)
 

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I reloaded for about 4yrs before even getting a tumbler. I used to just roll the fired cases in a damp towel & reload them. All I wanted then & now are clean cases to run thru my dies. Tumbling gives me that in 2h-3hrs. Not factory new shiney, but after 4-5 firings, they are kind of beat up anyway. SOme reloaders agonize over case cleaning, maybe it's pride or whatever, but the proof is always in the shooting.
 

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If you are a bench rest shooter where every thousandth of an inch accuracy matters, then polishing the inside of the case matters.
If you are (like mot of us) going for just cheaper ammo, then it really doesn't matter. The only real reason to tumble your brass is so that any damage is more easily noticeable (cracks, etc.) and less gunk builds up in your dies and you don't have to clean em out as much.
 

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Just tumble them until the outside is clean enough so you won't scratch the dies.
 

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Tumble brass? I have been reloading 40 years and have yet to tumble my first brass. The rifle cases that I have to lube I wipe off with a clean cloth. The pistol cases, after I deprime and resize, I view the inside under a light, if there is any grass or dirt in there I blow into it to clean it out. I have never had a dud or misfire. Just lucky I guess. However I do not shoot competition so their rules may be somewhat different about cleaning the cases. :-| As for the inside of the cases, they don't need to be shiney, just remove the big chunks of grass and dirt that you find in there.
 

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Tumble brass? I have been reloading 40 years and have yet to tumble my first brass. The rifle cases that I have to lube I wipe off with a clean cloth. The pistol cases, after I deprime and resize, I view the inside under a light, if there is any grass or dirt in there I blow into it to clean it out. I have never had a dud or misfire. Just lucky I guess. However I do not shoot competition so their rules may be somewhat different about cleaning the cases. :-| As for the inside of the cases, they don't need to be shiney, just remove the big chunks of grass and dirt that you find in there.
Funny, I was talking to a guy @ the local IDPA match Sat. He uses a special stainless steel media in a rock tumbler w/ water & some detergent/cleaner. He deprimes first, then tumbles so they are factory shiney new inside & out, then sizes & reloads. Odd, the ammo doesn't shoot better as he was whining that I beat him shooting my 45 against his 9mm in the last match.;) As long as the brass is clean, how ever you get there, it's good to reload. Anything else is just braggin rights.
 

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I'm not anal about the inside of the brass, like the others have said; as long as the flash hole is unobstructed and no chunks of buildup etc. However, I am anal about the dies.

I actually tumble twice! A short tumble (2-3hrs) to clean 'em up before I de-prime/resize, then, I tumble 'em for about 3-4hrs. and then trim and load...YMMV

ETA: I use crushed walnut shells I pick up from PetSmart for tumble media with great results! They sell it as media to line aquariums for Iguanas...lol. I always laugh to myself when I think about what the little sales associate would say if she knew what I was using it for...she's a little grateful dead treehugger. She once commented to me that "You sure do buy a lot of this stuff!"
 

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Walnut media does a good job at cleaning, corn is better for polishing. With that being said, I use walnut.
 

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I use corn. And while I have to admit, I am a sucker for shiny... I mainly do it because of the sizing die.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Walnut media does a good job at cleaning, corn is better for polishing. With that being said, I use walnut.
I found the wording funny: I love the horsepower of the new Camaro, the style of the new Chanllenger. With that being said I drive a 3/4 ton truck.

I also use walnut and drive a 3/4 ton Chevy.;)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the input everyone. Still new at the reloading area, matter of fact I still haven't bought any dies yet.
 

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I'm new to reloading and while cleaning some once fired brass using ground walnut, I found that the inside of the cases still have some residue. How clean does the inside of the case need to be? (The outside looks great.) Will that residue mess with the combustion pressure of the case? Thanks for all the help.
 

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I'm new to reloading and while cleaning some once fired brass using ground walnut, I found that the inside of the cases still have some residue. How clean does the inside of the case need to be? (The outside looks great.) Will that residue mess with the combustion pressure of the case? Thanks for all the help.
Not at all/ Again, many agonize over this but the only way to get them sparkley clean is a wet media. It's just not needed, I doubt even bench rest shooters worry about the inside being squeeky clean.:rolleyes:
 

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I use corn cob media. I put a little brasso in my media as it is working.
I load 9mm,38/357,44,45,and in rifle 22.250,243,30.06,300win mag
I dont worry about the inside too much as long as its clean enough to check for damage.
 

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I run stainless media and I love it. Run brass through universal decaping die, tumble for four hours, and it is factory new clean inside and out. While I don't care as much about the inside being clean (it is just an added bonus) to me the number one benefit to stainless media is clean primer pockets with no work. I also should say that I don't reload as much to save money but to make the highest quality ammo I can, to have control over my ammo supply, and to make custom ammo that can't be store bought.
 

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I use an ultra sonic cleaning after the cases start getting ugly on the outside. It all depends on what powder and load you are shooting as to how often I take this step. I can tell you though that I load at least a couple times before I clean.
 

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I use corn cob media. I put a little brasso in my media as it is working.
I load 9mm,38/357,44,45,and in rifle 22.250,243,30.06,300win mag
I dont worry about the inside too much as long as its clean enough to check for damage.
DO NOT run Brasso in the media. The ammonia attacks th brass & makes it brittle over the long run. How long, depends on the brass quality. All the media needs is a little Nufinish or sim polish that is none reactive.
Brass cases should be cleaned in some way prior to EVERY reloading session. Dirty brass transfers dirt to the dies & only causes add'l. wear. The cases do not have to be shiney but should be clean of any surface grit of any kind.
 

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Even benchrest shooters don't polish the inside of cases. The OP is talkng about handgun ammo cases. Absolutely no reason to worry about the inside of the case.
 
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