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Discussion Starter #1
I've used a dry media tumbler for years. I was thinking about switching to a wet pin tumbler. I'd like some input from you guys who have them. Mid south shooters supply has a Lyman belt driven one and a Frankfort Arsenal gear driven one on sale. anyone have experience with either? what are the advantages/disadvantages of the two drives? how quiet are the pin tumblers? my shop is under the house and when I vibrate tumble brass everyone knows it! I'm guessing all pin tumblers are quieter than a vibrator and that is one of my justifications for switching. not to mention how clean the brass gets. also what is the process? do you have to put the brass in the oven?
 

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Either will work just fine, I'd bet. If you do quite a bit reloading I'd probably go with the Lyman. I just use the double Harbor Freight one and it works fine for me, I only load probably 5-6k a year.

It'll be about a tenth the noise of the vibratory, for sure lol.

I bought a $35 dehydrator off Walmart.com to dry mine in. Oven on lowest setting works fine too, got tired of the wife hollering at me to get my "brass out of the kitchen stove" when she needed it.

I use a few drops of Dawn and about 1/8 teaspoon of Lemishine in mine as we have hard water here in the well.

I still use my vibratory tumbler, have it loaded with media and Nufinish to get a good protective coating on the brass. Biggest plus for me with the pins was the sparkling clean primer pockets, the vibratory never ever came close, also the insides of the cases are so much cleaner as well.
 
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Either will work just fine, I'd bet. If you do quite a bit reloading I'd probably go with the Lyman. I just use the double Harbor Freight one and it works fine for me, I only load probably 5-6k a year.

It'll be about a tenth the noise of the vibratory, for sure lol.

I bought a $35 dehydrator off Walmart.com to dry mine in. Oven on lowest setting works fine too, got tired of the wife hollering at me to get my "brass out of the kitchen stove" when she needed it.

I use a few drops of Dawn and about 1/8 teaspoon of Lemishine in mine as we have hard water here in the well.

I still use my vibratory tumbler, have it loaded with media and Nufinish to get a good protective coating on the brass. Biggest plus for me with the pins was the sparkling clean primer pockets, the vibratory never ever came close, also the insides of the cases are so much cleaner as well.
I have read many posts by guys using wet SS pins, and liking the primer pocket cleaning action.

Are you guys just running the brass through a decap die before cleaning the brass? Then sizing dies after cleaning? That's two runs to accomplish one sizing die function.

It seems like a lot of extra work, for so little benefit, as we discussed on another thread about primer pocket cleaning, and it's benefits or lack thereof.
 

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Unless the primer pockets get loose, why bother? Clean brass works well. I don't understand the obsession for "shiny". It's been a while, but I never deprimed until after tumbling.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I also deprime after tumbling and will probably continue to do so even if I get the pin tumbler.
 

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I deprime before cleaning, but the main reason isn't so that the primer pockets get clean, that's just an added bonus. I deprime everything on a Lee Universal depriming die, the reason I went to doing that was because of busted depriming pins due to off-center flash holes in .223/5.56. Now my sizing dies only resize and run through it much easier to boot.

Some folks who wet tumble have run into the primers separating and leaving the outer "ring" of the primer stuck in the case when running them through the resizing/depriming die after wet tumbling and drying.
 

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I am on the fence.
My dry tumble works good
But i like shiny too.
But then i think of the money to switch
Then i like shiny
Repeat
 
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I had just been tumbling everything with ground corn cob for decades. It does a good enough job, but it does take some time.

I bought one of the Franklin Armory wet tumblers about a year ago, perfect, shiny brass in just a couple hours. Plus some time to sift out the SS pins and more time dry the brass. I've just been spreading the wet brass out on a clean dry towel to air dry.

I don't see any need to wet tumble brass, but it sure looks good.
 

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Used a vibrating tumbler with corn cob media for years. Got a gift card for Amazon and figured, What the heck. Got the Frankford Arsenal SS pin tumbler. It will handle 1,000 .223 cases at a time. It is a bit noisy, but not as bad as the vibrator tumbler. Hot water, cases, 5 pounds of ss pins, a small squirt of Dawn and bit of Lemishine. I deprime and resize before cleaning. Cases are clean as a whistle inside and out, including primer pockets. I lay the cases out on a towel in front of a small fan and they dry nicely. This thing works so well, I gave away my vibrating tumbler.
 

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I use both in conjunction with each other.
usually the really grungy stuff goes in the pin tumbler to get cleaned well so I can inspect it.
then into the dry tumbler to actually dry it and to add a coat of nu-finish.

if I'm just re-sizing the cases it goes into the dry tumbler to clean the case lube off.
the pin tumbler can be used with dry media too.
my pin tumbler sees a lot of use like after annealing and for much of my swaging operations.
 

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I use harbor freight walnut media
It works way faster than cob
 
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I bought the Thumlers Model B because it had the largest drum of any out there. Of course now that I bought it Thumlers now makes one even bigger. Anyways I love it. The SS media cleans up some corrosion like you would not believe. I love how it even takes that hard black carbon build up out of the primer pockets like no other type cleaner does. It is of course a little work to separate the media from the cases but I think it is worth it. But I did keep my old vibratory tumbler, and use it to clean the case lube off the brass after I size the bottleneck type cases.
 
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Gandog the cheap-o media sifter [frankford arsenal] that goes in a bucket is the ticket.
you just dump the pins in with the brass and shake, everything falls through into the bucket except the brass.
 

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Gandog the cheap-o media sifter [frankford arsenal] that goes in a bucket is the ticket.
you just dump the pins in with the brass and shake, everything falls through into the bucket except the brass.
Yet every time I pour the liquid and cases in the bucket, somehow some of those pins end up on the floor. Then there is the separating the pins from the liquid. More chances of losing pins. I finally have found a way where I don't lose that many any more, using a plastic colander and a cheesecloth bag.
 

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Gandog turned me into a believer on the wet/SS pins.

For those that do NOT decap prior to cleaning, do you have pins get stuck in the flash holes? If so, are they causing problems with decapping?
 

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I do not try to size them after cleaning with any pins stuck in the flash holes. I use a steel punch slightly smaller than the diameter of the flash hole to push any stuck pins through before I size them.

Other than the occasion stuck pins how do you like the job the stuff does on cleaning the cases?
 

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i bought in to wet cleaning, love it. far better in a number of ways than dry vibrating.
but yes get a cheap dehydrator. or use a wire rack outside during the heat of the summer.

i have a shelf out in the laundry room for working all this. rotary tumbler, dehydrator, and two bottles of cleaner. easy - pesey---.

the first time you dump a tumbler into the separator and the first rinse you will understand the reason wet is far better.
 

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I also deprime after tumbling and will probably continue to do so even if I get the pin tumbler.
Since my press deprimes about 2 seconds before the case is reloaded.
I tumble before too
 

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I found it is handy to have a good magnet around when I dump the pins into my separator. Somehow pins always seem to bounce out and hit the floor, no matter how careful I am pouring. But I just sweep the magnet around and it finds most of the strays.
 
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