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Thread: What can be used in a Tumbler?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master Kev18's Avatar
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    What can be used in a Tumbler?

    I have a tumbler and I was wondering what kind of medium I can put in it? I have small bits of corn cobs. Its one I bought at Cabelas a few years ago and the corn came with it...

    What else can I put in it? Are some better then others?

    Some polish more or more aggressive?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    There are several different media . Basicly all will give the same results
    Dry Media : Corncob, Ground walnut shells, Plastic Beads,
    Most Loaders will use the first 2
    Wet Media , SS pins, Plastic Beads
    Pins are The most common
    I prefer Dry tumble . I use a Fine Grade walnut not to get it stuck in the primer pockets. To me Thats all I use. . Some loaders Use an additive to make the brass very good shine.
    Pin are good also. with the correct combo , pins to water and citric acid . cleans inside and out and some primer pockets.
    There is a big choice It's your choice. you make like one or another
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  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy Snow ninja's Avatar
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    My favorite thing to use is ground Walnut shells. Don't buy the stuff from a gun place though, I go to the local pet supply and get Lizard bedding. Same stuff but cheaper. I'm sure there's other things that will get it shinier, but I don't care that much about shiny, I just want clean.
    Do the best you can, with what you've got, where you're at. -Theodore Roosevelt

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy Stewbaby's Avatar
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    Ditto the pet store lizard walnut bedding. I put it outside to run the first time though so it sheds some of the dust. Add some nufinish for the shine.

    ...though wet tumbling is best IMO

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    i've even heard of people using spent primers as media.

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    Boolit Master Kev18's Avatar
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    I dont care about shine either. I just want clean. Il keep the walnuts in mind.

  7. #7
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    Winger Ed.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mozeppa View Post
    i've even heard of people using spent primers as media.
    I do that.
    I'll wash them to get any Lead dust off, then toss 'em in there instead of buying more
    corn cob media as some always gets away.

    They work, and ya can't beat the price.

    Every once in awhile a couple will try to clog inside a .223.
    .30 cal. or bigger, they drop right out.
    It wasn't playing the blame game, finding fault, and complaining about every little thing that made America great.
    It was God, guns, and guts.

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    Boolit Master pietro's Avatar
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    .


    FWIW, I got my fired brass very clean, although not shiny, via washing about 100 at a time in my clothes washing machine, when my Green-Eyed Monster isn't home.



    The method I use is to put the brass into a pillowcase, knot the pillowcase mouth, and run a full cycle hot water load of towels with regular detergent & the loaded pillowcase.

    .
    Experience is a wonderful thing - It lets you recognize a mistake, when you make it again.

  9. #9
    Boolit Bub
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    Quote Originally Posted by pietro View Post
    .


    FWIW, I got my fired brass very clean, although not shiny, via washing about 100 at a time in my clothes washing machine, when my Green-Eyed Monster isn't home.



    The method I use is to put the brass into a pillowcase, knot the pillowcase mouth, and run a full cycle hot water load of towels with regular detergent & the loaded pillowcase.

    .
    Dang, you are one brave dude

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

    Winger Ed.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pietro View Post
    .FWIW, I got my fired brass very clean, although not shiny, via washing about 100 at a time in my clothes washing machine, when my Green-Eyed Monster isn't home. .
    You're more brave than the guy who ate the first raw oyster.
    It wasn't playing the blame game, finding fault, and complaining about every little thing that made America great.
    It was God, guns, and guts.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master brstevns's Avatar
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    I use cheap dry white rice mixed with a little corncob. They come out clean and shiny, but you do get a piece of rice stuck in primer hole once in awhile. No big deal, deprimer pin pushing it on out with no problems.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by brstevns View Post
    I use cheap dry white rice .
    I did that once, but only once.

    I think the rice might have swelled in the humidity, I'm not exactly sure.

    But I do remember how tedious it was digging rice out of a couple hundred 5.56 cases.

    Looking back:
    I think the rice would be fine for straight wall pistol cases with the spent primers left in them
    if the tumbler was full enough that when the cases came up & over the top,
    they dumped the rice out and re-filled when they went back around underneath.

    I only use corn cob media now, but unprimed rifle cases all get put in a loading tray
    upside down so I can check & use a needle to poke that one piece of media out of the flash hole.
    Last edited by Winger Ed.; 02-19-2020 at 01:14 PM.
    It wasn't playing the blame game, finding fault, and complaining about every little thing that made America great.
    It was God, guns, and guts.

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by pietro View Post
    .


    FWIW, I got my fired brass very clean, although not shiny, via washing about 100 at a time in my clothes washing machine, when my Green-Eyed Monster isn't home.



    The method I use is to put the brass into a pillowcase, knot the pillowcase mouth, and run a full cycle hot water load of towels with regular detergent & the loaded pillowcase.

    .
    Not something I'd do or recommend, could contaminate washer/clothes with lead, the pillow case for sure.
    I would suggest you stop, especially if you have children whose clothes get washed there.
    Size/Prime a few cases when starting off with a progressive and put them aside. You can plug them back into the process when a bad/odd case screws up the priming station and continue loading.

  14. #14
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    I use corn com media. I buy it by the 100lb bag at a sandblasting supply house in Phoenix. When you buy it bulk like this, it's dirt cheap. You can get various grit sizes, I just use the medium.

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    Boolit Master Kev18's Avatar
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    Is there stuff that is more aggressive or is it all the same? Why dont people use sand or beads?

  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Go to Earl Mays and get lizard bedding...its ground walnut hull and with rouge it makes excellent case polish. Amd it is way cheaper than commercial case media.

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev18 View Post
    Is there stuff that is more aggressive or is it all the same? Why dont people use sand or beads?
    Sand in a chamber would be a very bad thing.

  18. #18
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    I use the Ground English walnut Lizard bedding from a pet store. I read somewhere that English walnut hulls are a bit harder than black walnut hulls, true or not it works well and doesn't clog flash holes too badly. The bags I get are a finer grind than most of the black walnut media I have seen.

    I also decap with a Lee die prior to tumbling, then when I resize the case the decapping pin in the die takes care of any stuck media.

    Robert

  19. #19
    Boolit Master pietro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenstone View Post

    Not something I'd do or recommend, could contaminate washer/clothes with lead, the pillow case for sure.

    I would suggest you stop, especially if you have children whose clothes get washed there.

    Worry about nothing - I've got it covered...…….

    After the cases are clean, the old pillowcase is likewise clean - but I also run the machine again after I'm done with the cases (using detergent)

    I've been doing that since the mid-70's, and my 3 kids (now 54, 51 & 48 years old) are just fine.

    Thanks for caring, though.

    .
    Experience is a wonderful thing - It lets you recognize a mistake, when you make it again.

  20. #20
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev18 View Post
    Is there stuff that is more aggressive or is it all the same? Why dont people use sand or beads?
    Too heavy, brass would just sit on top of it.
    jmo
    Size/Prime a few cases when starting off with a progressive and put them aside. You can plug them back into the process when a bad/odd case screws up the priming station and continue loading.

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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