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Old 09-30-2012, 15:53   #1
cajun_chooter
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tumbler or vibrator case cleaner ?

thought i would poll the vast knowledge of this board members which case cleaner they preferred...
tumbler versus vibrator ? and may i ask why ?
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Old 09-30-2012, 15:55   #2
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thought i would poll the vast knowledge of this board members which case cleaner they preferred...
tumbler versus vibrator ? and may i ask why ?
I used the Thumbler Tumbler for many years and it worked well. The motor burned up so I was in the market for something else.

I wanted more capacity so I went with the Dillon large vibratory cleaner.

The tumbler has the advantage that you can use wet media. Some folks do some of that, I'm not one of them.

Either works...

Richard
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Old 09-30-2012, 18:51   #3
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You didn't ask about ultrasonic! No love for ultrasonic??
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Old 09-30-2012, 19:05   #4
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AFAIK, vibratory is cheaper, faster, and thus more commonly used. A true tumbler can generally handle wet media...and there have been some people who've posted really stunning looking cleaned brass using a tumbler, stainless steel pin media, water, and some "cleanser". But then you have to deal with drying wet brass.
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Old 09-30-2012, 21:42   #5
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I bought one from Harbor Freight years ago. Laugh if you want but I have run thousands of cases through it and it is still going strong. Even took a dive off the bench and ran sideways on the floor a while. If interested, be sure together the 20% off coupon off their web site or magazine ads.

If you look close at all the vibratory cleaners, they start to look an aweful lot alike... some may even be the same, just different colors.

The stainless steel pin cleaners are making me look though!
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Old 10-01-2012, 06:24   #6
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Still using my Lyman turbo tumbler I got as a Christmas gift 30 years ago.

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Old 10-01-2012, 06:30   #7
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Have a Lyman 2500 Pro Magnum Auto Flo. Also bought a non auto flo spare bowl. It is a vibratory tumbler.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:07   #8
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After owning both. My vote goes for the vibrator types. But if I wanted to wet clean I would go with the RCBS Sidewinder.
I just think the vibrator does a better job of cleaning the brass. And less trouble.
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:10   #9
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After owning both. My vote goes for the vibrator types. But if I wanted to wet clean I would go with the RCBS Sidewinder. I just think the vibrator does a better job of cleaning the brass. And less trouble.
I'm with Bob!



(A vibrator is quieter, too)
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:41   #10
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I'm with Bob!



(A vibrator is quieter, too)
I have owned both.

The vibratory cleaner failed and came close to starting a fire.

I bought a Thumbler with thermal protection on the motor.

The thumbler is (much) slower to clean to the same level, I just have it on a 6 hour timer. It gives the option for wet or dry. The rotary thumbler is a lot, not just a little, but a lot, quieter than a vibratory cleaner. It is less convenient to open (six wingnuts instead of one).
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:07   #11
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I have a Cabela's vibratory one I bought in 2009 that has lasted well. I've tumbled an easy 50,000 cases, it's still going strong. Easy, no mess. Definitely gets the cases clean.

No way would I wanna mess with a liquid media, gotta drain it, dry the brass.... believe me, a vibratory one with corncob or crushed walnut gets the brass sufficiently clean and shiny with less muss/fuss. And is cheaper. I think I paid $50 for mine as a kit (tumbler, media, polish) from Cabelas.

Right this second, the have the tumbler plus the kit, for the same price as just the tumbler:
http://www.cabelas.com/product/Cabelas-Model-400-Vibratory-Case-Tumbler-Kit/731769.uts
It's a $15 savings.

(tumbler alone).
http://www.cabelas.com/product/Cabel...ler/731767.uts

EDIT! For some reason, that first link (although different, see the number at the end) is taking me to the same place as the second link. But if you look around... they have the kit for the same price. One box of media and some polish too.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:37   #12
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No way would I wanna mess with a liquid media, gotta drain it, dry the brass.... believe me, a vibratory one with corncob or crushed walnut gets the brass sufficiently clean and shiny with less muss/fuss. And is cheaper. I think I paid $50 for mine as a kit (tumbler, media, polish) from Cabelas.
I used to strongly agree but have been leaning toward getting a stainless steel Thumler set-up as of late. I've been testing .223 heavy bullets with year sorted LC brass and found that ranges over 400 yards. Consistency is key. Cleaning primer pockets and have clean inside necks for consistent neck tension does indeed make a difference. I just got several hundred pieces of Lapua brass for my bolt gun and want to all I can to get my loads perfect.
Standard .223 AR loads and pistol though, I'll stick with corncob
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:00   #13
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I used to strongly agree but have been leaning toward getting a stainless steel Thumler set-up as of late. I've been testing .223 heavy bullets with year sorted LC brass and found that ranges over 400 yards. Consistency is key. Cleaning primer pockets and have clean inside necks for consistent neck tension does indeed make a difference. I just got several hundred pieces of Lapua brass for my bolt gun and want to all I can to get my loads perfect.
Standard .223 AR loads and pistol though, I'll stick with corncob
Keep us up to date on this. If it actually works, I will give up my Hornady Case Prep machine and try the wet tumbling.

I'm just about at the point where I may start shooting over on the 600 and 1000 yard course. I have no great expectations at 1000 yards.

Richard
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:50   #14
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Frankford Arsenal for me. Been going strong for 6 plus years.
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Old 10-01-2012, 13:38   #15
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For volume handgun shooting, definitely vibratory.
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Old 10-01-2012, 16:40   #16
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Get a vibe

from Dillon Precision.
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Old 10-01-2012, 17:27   #17
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I have had a Dillon CV500 for over 15 years. The motor finally died last month. $104 to upgrade my Dillon CV500 and I have to send it to them or $144 for a new CV750. I wonder if there are any after market sources for the motor.
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Old 10-01-2012, 17:33   #18
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I wonder if there are any after market sources for the motor.
Probably. If you cannot get it from an industrial supply catalog somewhere you can probably source the same motor from another company that sells tumblers cheaper than Dillon. I doubt every brand tumbler is made by the same company. A company like Raytech may even make them. Pull the motor, post some pics along with any info on the motor tag.(if there is a motor tag)

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Old 10-04-2012, 01:08   #19
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After having the stainless media and thumblers tumbler, nothing else is close. Sure you need to de-prime before but drying is no big deal and the quality is amazing with clean primer pockets and brass.

I guess for the guys that reload really high volume it may not be their cup of tea but the difference in the brass is night and day compared to vibratory or ultrasonic. Do you need that? Well, I love sparkling brass.
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Old 10-04-2012, 13:15   #20
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After having the stainless media and thumblers tumbler, nothing else is close. Sure you need to de-prime before but drying is no big deal and the quality is amazing with clean primer pockets and brass.

I guess for the guys that reload really high volume it may not be their cup of tea but the difference in the brass is night and day compared to vibratory or ultrasonic. Do you need that? Well, I love sparkling brass.
Concur with same outstanding results (stainless media and Thumblers Tumbler). My very old metal base RCBS Mega Tumbler (Vibratory ) and my Thumblerís Tumbler (Vibratory ) have been relegated to super polishing duty with flitz and corn cob now when I just have to have mirror polished cases.
Replacement motors from Thumblerís can easily be adapted to salvage burned out tumblers of other brands.
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Old 10-04-2012, 19:10   #21
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After having the stainless media and thumblers tumbler, nothing else is close. Sure you need to de-prime before but drying is no big deal and the quality is amazing with clean primer pockets and brass.

I guess for the guys that reload really high volume it may not be their cup of tea but the difference in the brass is night and day compared to vibratory or ultrasonic. Do you need that? Well, I love sparkling brass.
What's your method for drying the brass, and what do you do with the lead contaminated wash water?
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Old 10-05-2012, 00:16   #22
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What's your method for drying the brass, and what do you do with the lead contaminated wash water?
Dirty water into the toilet. To dry after I seperate the media from the brass I put a couple of small pieces of rag into the seperator basket and spin. I then remove the damp rag pieces and put a couple of dry ones in and spin again. Then I just dump them on a tray and reload later after they've air dried to ensure there are no droplets inside, I re-use the rag pieces. I know some guys put the brass in the oven and stuff but mine is virtually dry when I dump it out and any droplet inside will air dry here in NV in a day or so.
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:31   #23
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I've owned both, prefer a good vibrating tumbler. If you just have to have the shiniest brass on the range, then nothing will do but a tumbler & ss media.
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:38   #24
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Two stage but fast. Ultrasonic with water , Dawn, and tablespoon of vinegar per 100 40 brass. for about 30 minutes. Shake and pat dry, then vibrate with Nu-Finish and walnut for 30 - 45 min. I also deprime first. .......... looks like new , DOC
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Old 10-04-2012, 12:00   #25
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Raytech has motors built for them, & they are NOT friendly to deal with on the consumer level. They actually built the Lyman 2500 & 3200 series tumblers.
I have a 3200 that is currently setting, dead, as neither Raytech or Lyman has any interest in supplying a replacement motor.
Dillon isn't real good about it either, I have one of their older large (forget the model#) tumblers not running. They've changed suppliers over the years.
The main problem, is the fact that a motor made for a vibratory application is FAR different in bearings & construction, than a normal duty motor.
This I can state for FACT, as I work for the largest mfg'r. of vibratory equipment in the world....

www.generalkinematics.com

While we build very large equipment, the theory is the same, & "normal" motors just don't cut it!
Everything we build has custom motors, to our own specs, to live in the applications .

uncle albert
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