Ruger Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
298 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am currently using a Hornandy ultrasonic cleaner to clean my brass with a homemade solution of: one tablespoon of table salt, eight ounces of distilled vinegar, and one tablespoon of Oxi Clean dish washing detergent in 32 ounces of hot water. I run the cleaner for two 30 minute cycles. I then rinse the brass in two tablespoons of baking soda which has been dissolved in 32 ounces of water to neutralize the acid from the vinegar. The interior of the brass and primer pockets do clean up, however exterior brass itself looks ugly as heck, is sometimes stained and doe snot have a slick feel to it.

Is there another homemade mix that I can use that will at least keep the exterior of the brass from getting dark, looking ugly or at least get the smooth slick feeling back to the brass ? If not does this change to the brass have any negative impact? So far I have not noticed any myself.
 

·
Retired Moderator & Gunsmith
Joined
·
17,044 Posts
I use a 50-50 mixture of white vinegar and water with a couple drops of Dawn dish detergent. I also have tried a half cup of Lemishine dissolved in an ultrasonic full of water. Both do an excellent job of cleaning the brass ... inside and out, but do not make the cases shiny. After the ultrasonic treatment (4 cycles) I rinse the cases in hot water, put them in loading blocks (primer end up), then let them air dry. If I'm in a hurry, a hair drier will dry them out in just a few minutes.

Once the cases are clean and dry, I put them in my vibratory case cleaner for about 30 minutes with a cap full of Dillon's Rapid Shine. The cases come super shiny and super clean. Do they shoot any better??? Probably not, but it shows some pride and they are easier to spot in the grass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
298 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Iowegan;

Thanks again for your help, I appreciate it. My biggest concern was that the the cases not having a smooth shine could possible cause issues such as slide cycling problems. If that's not the case then I'll have to live with slightly tarnished cases. If I buy one more reloading supply I think my wife may hit me over the head with a bat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,096 Posts
I use Lemi-Shine, but if you can find citric acid powder at a wine making store or someplace else, it's about the same.

I soak them about 30 minutes the way Iowegan stated in the white vinegar, warm water & Dawn combo, rinse well & then in the Ultrasonic for about 15 minutes with Lemi-Shine/water & it usually come out fairly shiny, but always clean.:cool:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
298 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I use Lemi-Shine, but if you can find citric acid powder at a wine making store or someplace else, it's about the same.

I soak them about 30 minutes the way Iowegan stated in the white vinegar, warm water & Dawn combo, rinse well & then in the Ultrasonic for about 15 minutes with Lemi-Shine/water & it usually come out fairly shiny, but always clean.:cool:
Thanks, as dumb as this may sound I never thought about soaking the cases for 30 minutes prior to placing them in the ultrasonic cleaner.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,566 Posts
I just use the Hornady Ultrasonic Cleaner solution. I put the cases in the basket, let presoak for 15-20 minutes and then run 1 30 minute cycle unless they are really nasty and then I run them 2 times. All my cases come out nice and shinny. Looks almost as clean as new.

I'm still using the first bottle of Hornady Ultrasonic cleaner I bought over 8 months ago. It only takes 2 oz. of cleaner to 40 oz. of water so a bottle lasts forever as I get several cleanings from each mix. I can do up to 1000 cases on a mix. I also strain it after each wash so that makes the cleaner last longer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,540 Posts
...The cases come super shiny and super clean. Do they shoot any better??? Probably not, but it shows some pride and they are easier to spot in the grass.
Those are the reasons I clean my cases, too. I only use crushed walnut shell in a vibratory tumbler, with a few used dryer sheets thrown in, to clean them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
36 Posts
Don't know if it would work in an ultrasonic but in a rock tumbler with steel pins I just use Dawn dish soap and water.
 

·
Retired Moderator & Gunsmith
Joined
·
17,044 Posts
PeeShooter, Pins don't work in anything but a tumbler. In vibratory case cleaners, the pins just go to the bottom and irritate each other but don't scrub the cases.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
308 Posts
I use Lemi-Shine, but if you can find citric acid powder at a wine making store or someplace else, it's about the same.

I soak them about 30 minutes the way Iowegan stated in the white vinegar, warm water & Dawn combo, rinse well & then in the Ultrasonic for about 15 minutes with Lemi-Shine/water & it usually come out fairly shiny, but always clean.:cool:
+1 Lemon Shine and Dawn. Just a bit in hot water. But I use steel pins in a tumbler.
Even gets the primer pockets shiny.

Can you put steel pins in an ultrasonic?? Never owned one to try.

Radio George
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,158 Posts
I am currently using a Hornandy ultrasonic cleaner to clean my brass with a homemade solution of: one tablespoon of table salt, eight ounces of distilled vinegar, and one tablespoon of Oxi Clean dish washing detergent in 32 ounces of hot water. I run the cleaner for two 30 minute cycles. I then rinse the brass in two tablespoons of baking soda which has been dissolved in 32 ounces of water to neutralize the acid from the vinegar. The interior of the brass and primer pockets do clean up, however exterior brass itself looks ugly as heck, is sometimes stained and doe snot have a slick feel to it.

Is there another homemade mix that I can use that will at least keep the exterior of the brass from getting dark, looking ugly or at least get the smooth slick feeling back to the brass ? If not does this change to the brass have any negative impact? So far I have not noticed any myself.
Why the salt? I just use straight dawn.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
36 Posts
PeeShooter, Pins don't work in anything but a tumbler. In vibratory case cleaners, the pins just go to the bottom and irritate each other but don't scrub the cases.
Well yea but my suggestion was to use Dawn Dish Washer Liquid to clean your brass. If you want to change cleaning devices, you wont get cleaner brass then a rock tumbler and pins but try the dish soap, Dawn is powerful stuff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,722 Posts
One of the oldest and most used brass and copper cleaners in the marine environment has been a mixture of water, salt and vinegar...been used on sailing vessels, ships, etc for a very long time...and it works...

I recall back in the late 50's or early 60's an article in the "National Rifleman" or some other publication that had a "case cleaning" item...it was a combination of soap flakes (there were no liquid soaps then), vinegar, a pinch of salt and water....use a non metalic bowl...soak, shake, rinse well and dry.....I used it for years.

I had commented on it one time a few years back and a discussion ensued...one of the things that came out of it was some folks had left the brass in the "soup" for a couple of hours and when they rinsed it and let it dry there was a pink hue to the brass or a blotched appearance with the pink tint.

A man with a big background in chemistry and especially in metalurgy posted that the problem was with the vinegar...he said for a very short wash it probably was ok but needed a very thorough rinse..he said the acid in vinegar was attacking the metal and the pink was copper that had found it's way to the surface....he indicated that food grade citric acid, hot water, a few drops of dish soap to emulsify things and no salt was the best cleaner to use and that the citric acid "passivates" the surface of the brass and actually acts as a preserver for the properties of the brass...it was more stable after the cleaning than before when it was new.

I've used the citric acid bath since then (I had noticed some of the pink residue with vinegar) and have had great results..I give the brass a few minute bath with agitation...rinse it with hot running water...put it upside down on a "rack" made of nails driven into a block of wood and let it air dry...I've heard of using an oven on very low but I'm more comfortable letting it sun/air dry on my nail boards...then into the tumbler if I want it to shine with fine lizard bedding and a capful of nushine car polish and some pieces of used dryer sheets to keep dust down..E bay has all kinds of food grade citric acid in quantities from less than a pound up to a keg. A pound lasts a long time.

Works great for what I do and no more "pink spots or tint" on my brass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
280 Posts
I have used Simple Green. Works well. Was a caution on some site not to get it on your skin, but it does shine the brass.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,793 Posts
Why the salt?
The salt acts as an abrasive. When my wife worked in a restaurant, they told her to clean the coffee pots with dawn, salt, and ice. She said it worked great.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
36 Posts
What kind of ultrasonic cleaners are you guys using, and if decapped prior to cleaning, do they come out spotless inside and out including primer pocket?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,722 Posts
The salt acts as an abrasive. When my wife worked in a restaurant, they told her to clean the coffee pots with dawn, salt, and ice. She said it worked great.
I understand that the salt in the "older formulas" combines with the acid in the vinegar and makes a very dilute form of hydrochloric acid which aids cleaning....I have used the salt/vinegar in a paste form on corroded brass marine fittings for years and it works great...I thing the citrus acid without salt is far more preferred (at least by me).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,096 Posts
I understand that the salt in the "older formulas" combines with the acid in the vinegar and makes a very dilute form of hydrochloric acid which aids cleaning....I have used the salt/vinegar in a paste form on corroded brass marine fittings for years and it works great...I thing the citrus acid without salt is far more preferred (at least by me).
I agree opos, but I do both. De-prime 1st & soak for 20-30 minutes in the vinegar solution, rinse well & then warm water & citric acid in the ultrasonic cleaner for about 15-20 minutes. The cases comes out very clean & bright.:cool:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,096 Posts
What kind of ultrasonic cleaners are you guys using, and if decapped prior to cleaning, do they come out spotless inside and out including primer pocket?
I use a Lyman 700(small) cleaner, it is small & works well for the way I reload, which is batches of 100 cases at a time.
I decap cases 1st using a Lee Universal decapper (other Mfg's make 1 also) & the cases are clean in/out, including primer pockets.
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top