Hunting and Target Practice: What’s The Best Way To Clean Brass?

 When it comes to cleaning brass, there are several labor-saving machines that can handle massive quantities at ago.

From the vibratory dry tumbler and the stainless steel pin, such as like Frankford arsenal rotary case tumbler to the ultrasonic cleaner, there’s always something perfect for your personal needs. Each of these models offers unique benefits, but the choice you make depends on your particular priorities as well as proclivities. Here are top ways to clean brass.

Dry Vibratory Tumblers

The vibratory tumbler is one of the most popular methods of cleaning brass. The tumbler is typically a plastic tub which sits at the top of an electric motor causing it to vibrate. And everything inside the tub, including dry media and bass, vibrates along with it.

The polishing media is essentially a walnut shell or a corn cub. Dry media is poured into the tub, the dirty brass is tossed in, and then the motor is turned on. After a few hours, the brass will be looking nice and shiny. The tub contents are then sieved over a bucket to isolate media from brass. After turning the case upside down, go ahead and wipe out the media dust from the external case and you’re done.

Dry media often needs occasional replacement. When the media particles vibrate, they press against each other and end up breaking down into dust. And that’s one of the greatest limitations of this method. To keep everything in check, consider wiping out the tub whilst its contents are still in the bucket. You’ll also need to toss the worn-out media.

Stainless Steel Pin

An ammonia-based liquid can also be added to boost the media’s polishing power before the onset of each tumbling session. The solution reacts with the copper particles present in the brass, converting its polishing effect from mechanical to chemical. Alternatively, you may add in jeweler’s rouge. However, it’s important to note that rouge is an extremely fine powder that could easily stick to the case’s inner walls, so utilize it sparingly.

Note that tumblers will not cure case corrosion, though they may somewhat smooth a roughened corroded brass surface.

Ultrasonic Cleaners

Just like vibratory dry media tumblers, ultrasonic cleaners utilize both media and a vibration. But its media is liquid and vibration often occurs at near a microscopic level. Compared to dishwashing, the liquid media can be thought of as a type of soap and water where the ultrasonic part triggers waves to act like scrubbers loosening and eliminating crud.

The Bottom Line

Vibratory tumblers, like people, come in various sizes and have their limits. Generally, the more cases we add to our tumbler, the longer it takes to clean them.

Be careful when mixing different cartridge brass together in a tumbler, as the media can cause a smaller case to become tightly wedged inside a larger one?9 mm Luger and .45 ACP; for example, can be harder to pry apart than two teenagers in love.
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