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Thread: Stained brass?

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold Terminatorret's Avatar
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    Jun 2019
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    East Texas
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    Stained brass?

    I'm new to reloading. I had some OLD 30-30 brass that needed cleaning (IMHO) prior to reuse. Several had green "mold" that scraped-off, but left an awful brown stain on the brass.
    I tumbled the brass in rice...worked great but the dark brown spots still remained. I tried several remedies including 0000 steel wool...tough stains. Then I tried "Bar Keepers Friend" that my wife keeps under the kitchen cabinet. BAM! Stains gone with minimal scrubbing with a paper towel! It's the same consistency as comet or Ajax powder.
    Y'all probably already know this, but it was new to me.
    Good hunting.

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master

    mdi's Avatar
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    Bar Keeper's Friend is very popular among fiber glass boat owners. Cleans well but won't scratch gel coat. Run your fingernail along the "dark brown spots" after cleaning. If you can feel any rough spots, the brass has been compromised by corrosion, and will be weak in that area. Toss 'em...
    My Anchor is holding fast!

  3. #3
    Boolit Mold Terminatorret's Avatar
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    No rough spots...just surface discoloration.

  4. #4
    Boolit Man
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    May 2015
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    I found some awesome looking black brass among oak leaves. I want to try it out this fall - they polish up beautifully.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master maxreloader's Avatar
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    If in boubt... toss it out. Or into the scrap bucket. It's not worth the risk to you or yours.
    Looking for Ideal molds 419181 (44 Evans Long) and 375167 (38-72)
    "Joined Dates" are deceiving if you factor-in "lurk" dates.

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master

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    I also observe where the corrosion is on the brass, and how large it is. neck shoulder area where brass works mire may be a bigger problem than mid body. back at the case head where stretch occurs is more questionable also

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy Half Dog's Avatar
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    Apr 2015
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    30-30 brass is plentiful around here. If in doubt, scrap it.
    The sooner I fall behind...the more time I have to catch up with

  8. #8
    Moderator Emeritus / Trusted loob groove dealer


    waksupi's Avatar
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    What you are seeing is the elements separating, creating a weak spot in the brass. Toss it.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    Mar 2005
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    Nine Mile Falls,Wa.
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    Lemi-
    Shine
    Also works well to rermove stains in brass.
    It's all chicken, even the beak!

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

    gwpercle's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
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    Rice is great for a pot of Jambalaya but it sucks rocks as a tumbling media.
    Don't try kitty litter either...it's worse.
    Get some of Midway's Treated Walnut Hull Media . It has polishing rouge in it and is ground to the correct size . It has a reddish color...the brass polishing rouge . It's better than Lyman's .
    Just order it and use it. Lizard , snake and gopher bedding isn't made for brass polishing , wrong size and NO polishing compound . Forget rice , playground sand and the many abrasive blasting compounds on the market... It's all been tried and all found lacking .
    Gary
    Certified Cajun
    Proud Member of The Basket of Deplorables

  11. #11
    Boolit Master


    David2011's Avatar
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    The green "mold" you described is probably corrosion. Any chance it was exposed to rodent urine? That will corrode brass badly and I would scrap it.

    If it's just brown you can clean it with citric acid, available in the canning area of Walmart and other retailers. Here's the sticky on it: http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...-brass-cleaner.

    If it has green corrosion you can tell after the citric acid treatment if the corrosion was more than superficial. If it's pitted, scrap it. If it just turns pink, that is a superficial loss of zinc and will polish off in a tumbler. When cleaning large batches of brass I use a porcelain lined pot on the stove and try to keep it at about 160 F. It works in seconds. No need to rinse after the citric acid treatment.
    Sometimes life taps you on the shoulder and reminds you it's a one way street. Jim Morris

  12. #12
    Boolit Mold Terminatorret's Avatar
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    No rodent urine...just lifted out of a leather belt slide kept in a dresser drawer. No pitting, just a waxy green that left a brown spot on the surface. Thanks for everyones input.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Jan 2010
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    Space Coast, FL
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    SS pins and a roller, water, Lemi Shine and two drops of Dawn. It will distort your mind and then all the brass you have will need to look like that. Some how it even does the primer pockets.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check