Cleaning live rounds

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by Charlie, Sep 28, 2002.

  1. Charlie

    Charlie G&G Regular

    Anyone ever try tumbling live rounds that are tarnished or is that a bad idea. I would not think that it would cause a round to discharge as slow as it turns.
  2. Never used a tumbler but have polished many a round with Brasso and a cloth.

  3. tonto

    tonto Guest

    I cringe when i do it, but i do it, now and again, never had a problem. I normally don't tumble loaded pistole' ammo, because i don't lube pistol casings. but i do like to tumble some rifle ammo, unless it is the best of the best of the best for deer season(what i work toward every year) then each round is hand cleaned, kissed and put in its storage for the awesome day of BIG GAME DEER SEASON YAYYAYYAYYYAYYYAYAY. Dain that buck fever, I nearly had it under control.
  4. dave375hh

    dave375hh Guest


    Tumbling loaded rounds is NOT recommended. The action of the tumbler can rub off the deternent coating of the powder and/or actually break down the powder kernels. When this happens the powder will become much faster burning and increase pressures greatly. Clean your cases after you size them to remove the case lube. I use untreated walnut media with about 1/2 oz of lacquer thinner for 20-30 min, works like a charm.
  5. tonto

    tonto Guest

    dain 375hh that laquer thinner was the cats meow, i tried it last night. I shoulda chnged the clear cover out with the blue one cause now it's cloudy but nice clean brass, I used a little too much(1/2 cup, or two glugs) but the rounds were nice and shiny. The deal with tumbling live ammo i must agree sounds like it would rub the grains to nothing.
  6. billy

    billy G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    i occasionally tumble .45l.c. ammo to remove ALOX residue.
  7. I bought some scuzzy looking Korean -06 stuff last year and used a Lee holder chucked in a cordless drill and held a wad of steel wool in my hand and just gave em a quick pass. Just enough to make sure they would chamber.
  8. billy

    billy G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    Apparently our US Armed Forces consider is quite safe to put tons of loaded rounds in the wings of a jet fighter. It is doubtful that there is a more adverse condition in which to place ammo. The "horror story" is a rural legend. Loaded rounds are also packed into humvees and currently touring thousands of miles of rough roads all over the world. When one stops to think of where and how we store and use ammo it is very clear that 'tumbling' just sounds alot worse than it really is.

    Ammo companies tumble every round before packaging to clean it up
    . Furthermore, ammo is trucked from the plant over thousands of miles (and hours) in trailers with a suspension akin to Conestoga wagons, imparting more vibration to the loaded rounds.

    not to mention boxcars..
  9. blaster

    blaster G&G Evangelist

    there was another post on this subject about a month or so. I was always under the impression that you shouldnt tumble live rounds but there were some very good arguments as to why it didn't matter.
  10. billy

    billy G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    it would take me forever to get that alox crap off of the amount of ammo i want to shoot today.
    if it was just a handfull of rifle rnds.
    id just use mineral spirits and a rag.
  11. Big Dog

    Big Dog Retired IT Dinosaur Wrangler Forum Contributor

    I steelwool the cruddy surplus rounds, and just ignore the tarnish and darkening of the brass. I make sure the brass I reload is clean and no crud to get in the primer pocket - but I don't polish it.
  12. billy

    billy G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    i got 10lbs. of cob for $1
    i use that.
    in 1 hour that sticky lube is gone.
  13. gandog56

    gandog56 G&G Evangelist

    Jeeze, and I thought I did good with 5 bucks for 16 pounds.
  14. Not me

    I don't want to take the chance on tumbling live rounds. Something could
    (no matter how unlikely) go terribly wrong.

    The best alternative is to tumble brass until clean before loading.
  15. billy

    billy G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    the cases dont have bullet lube on em till AFTER loading.
  16. deputy125

    deputy125 G&G Newbie

    never tried it.........and probably never will.

    murphy's law has a tendency to catch up with me........:kabong:
  17. Big Dog

    Big Dog Retired IT Dinosaur Wrangler Forum Contributor

    I did buy a bag of .303 British once, that had obviously been tumbled - it was way too shiney for 1944-dated ammo to rightfully be!

    But it shot perfectly fine. :)
  18. roverboy

    roverboy G&G Enthusiast

    Done the same thing. works good.
  19. DWARREN123

    DWARREN123 Guest

    Tumbling will not hurt loaded ammo and I have never heard of any rounds going off while tumbling. I have tumbled many hand loaded handgun rounds with no problems.
    Many people do it and have had no problems, not a ka boom type of deal.
  20. I know of one case where my friend had his tumbler catch fire when tumbling live rounds, first he knew of it was live rounds (.303) cooking off and two did go through the roof of his garage. What came first, the cook off or the fire? nobody knows but the results were a couple of keyholes in the roof & floor, and a molten mess of plastic tumbler & brass. Nobody I know tumbles live rounds these days!