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What's your favorite brass cleaning solution


Rhymer
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I am using a thumlers tumbler model b low speed . Here lately my cases never come out the same color. The last one I did came out bronze color but usually I get a really dark yellow. Not a new brass finish color. I am using 1 gallon tap water 1 teaspoon lemishine and 1 table spoon of dawn dish soap. What gives??

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My drums are about 1.2 gallons. 5lbs of media. I use 2 380 Auto cases full of Lemishine, and a 2-3 second squirt of Dawn. Cases come out a nice bright brass yellow color. No issues with darkening or cases turning pink.

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This is an interesting subject to me as I have run many hundreds of lbs of pistol and rifle brass and have been amazed sometimes at how one batch can come out pristine and the next anything but pristine. There are a surprising number of variables at play and these can change results even from from 'casually identical' batch to batch.

Thumler-B

Qty of brass - I prefer 5 lbs, less (3-5 lbs) is better.

Condition of brass - dirty, muddy, oxidized, green, black. etc. I suggest 2 passes for particularly nasty brass.

Steel & Aluminum cases, rocks, inorganic debris - sort these out FIRST

Organic debris - leaf and grass bits, etc. Tends to disintegrate

Qty of SS Pins - I prefer 7 lbs (5 lbs + 2 lb recharge kit), more works better

Cleanliness of SS pins. SS pins can accumulate and hold a surprising amount of contaminants like Lanolin case lube, etc. This will hae a big effect on results. Try washing pins with several cycles of hot soap and water, or running a brief batch or two WITHOUT brass. This drove me crazy for a while, especially when cleaning lubed/sized/trimmed rifle brass. I have seen it with ANY brass to a lesser extent.

Water - I prefer hot tap water, filled to the top. Sometimes I even pre-heat the brass with hot water.

Soap - Biodegradable, Costco, 1-2s squirt

Lemi-Shine - 1 45 case.

Clean Time - 2 hours, 4 is better. I don't go below 2 hours as that is how long it takes me to dry 5 lbs pistol brass with primers

Contact time - don't leave brass in too long or it will darken.

Dry time - wet brass exposed to air will oxidize very quickly. I like to rinse well & spin dry in a media separator, towel off and immediately put into a food dehydrator for 2+ hours.

Regular oxidation - immediate treatment with some one-shot after drying will help preserve the blingy look and make sizing pistol brass easier.

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  • 4 weeks later...

1/2 teaspoon Lemi shine and 2 tablespoons Turtle wax car wash and wax (the amounts are approximate, I don't measure)

Edit: this is per gallon of water.

IMG_20131122_094748_172%20(Small).jpg

Bk is that the concentrated turtle wash wax? Does it stop the cases from oxidizing later?

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1/2 teaspoon Lemi shine and 2 tablespoons Turtle wax car wash and wax (the amounts are approximate, I don't measure)

Edit: this is per gallon of water.

IMG_20131122_094748_172%20(Small).jpg

Bk is that the concentrated turtle wash wax? Does it stop the cases from oxidizing later?

I don't know if it's concentrated or regular, but yes it does stop the oxidization.

post-56380-0-94001000-1428280394_thumb.j

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1/2 teaspoon Lemi shine and 2 tablespoons Turtle wax car wash and wax (the amounts are approximate, I don't measure)

Edit: this is per gallon of water.

IMG_20131122_094748_172%20(Small).jpg

Bk is that the concentrated turtle wash wax? Does it stop the cases from oxidizing later?

I don't know if it's concentrated or regular, but yes it does stop the oxidization.

Thanks bk I just ordered some off amazon to give it a try

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I am using a thumlers tumbler model b low speed . Here lately my cases never come out the same color. The last one I did came out bronze color but usually I get a really dark yellow. Not a new brass finish color. I am using 1 gallon tap water 1 teaspoon lemishine and 1 table spoon of dawn dish soap. What gives??

I also use the Thumbler Model B. I don't premix my solution but rather I add (1) .380 Case full of Lemishine (less than 1/2 teaspoon), approximately 1 teaspoon of Dawn and 1-3/4 Quarts of water directly to each load of brass/pins. Comes out great.

The only time I've got the dark yellow color is when the brass stayed in the tumbler too long. I've always assumed this discoloration was from over exposure to the acidic (Lemishine is Citric Acid) solution. Don't leave your brass exposed to the solution for more than four hours and rinse well. I towel dry and then air dry for 24 hours.

I don't use any products with wax in them as I don't want any wax buildup in my dies. I'm not knocking the Turtle Wax idea but it seems that many loaders use the NuFinish "polish" product to avoid the wax issue.

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