Privacy guaranteed - Your email is not shared with anyone.

Welcome to Glock Forum at

Why should YOU join our forums?

  • Connect with other Glock Enthusiasts
  • Read up on the latest product reviews
  • Make new friends to go shooting with!
  • Becoming a member is FREE and EASY

Glock Talk is the #1 site to discuss the world’s most popular pistol, chat about firearms, accessories and more.

How long do you run your tumbler till brass is clean?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by JDinNC, Apr 28, 2010.

  1. I just bought a Hornady case tumbler and Lyman Turbo Tumbler Media. On the Lyman jug, "corncob green" is checked. Im looking to clean 100 45acp cases. How many hours should I let it run? I have it half full. I am trying to begin to reload. When I determine a good load, then I'll do 500 at a time. How full does it need to be?
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2010
  2. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    They'll get 'clean' in just a few minutes, (assuming it's not abused brass with two years of mud on 'em),... if you want 'em 'shiny, out of the box see your face in 'em or glittery enough to use as a bass lure' turn the tumbler on and go watch an HBO movie or two.

    Clean is all you need but shiny attracts loose women... or so I've heard.


  3. RustyFN


    Sep 29, 2006
    West Virginia
    I tumble my brass in walnut with Nu Finish car polish for 1.5 hours and it comes out nice and shiny. I would say check it in a hour and see if you are happy with it or want to go longer.
  4. kshutt


    Aug 24, 2001
    I like mine SHINY! I'll run about 400 of 'em at a time for about 5 hours. Admittedly, however, I haven't shared with the wife what they'll attract after that length of time. :supergrin:
  5. tglynn


    Feb 16, 2009
    Tulsa, OK
    I am new to reloading as well and I want my brass as clean as possible. I have been tumbling my brass in the Lyman red media for a couple hours per batch. It gets them really clean, but leaves red film inside and out. Do I need to do anything further to clean this film off or should I just continue the process?
  6. i throw between 100-500 (depending how much i shoot that week) in mine with walnut, but you can do one casing if you want.... go 1 hour and your brass should be fine like anyone else has mentioned, but shiny takes a little while longer. i've also noticed the more brass in, the quicker they get shiny. welcome to the reloading world and good luck with it. it's become a science for me and time seems to fly when doing it!
  7. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO

    A dryer sheet cut up into a couple of strips will help absorb quite a bit of the red dust. The longer you use the media the less red dust you'll notice.

    Unless it's really caked on your brass it won't hurt anything but if it's bothersome just go down to Petsmart and get some untreated corncob, take out half of your treated media and replace it with the untreated. Let your tumbler mix it up for a few minutes and you'll be good to go.

  8. atakawow


    Jan 19, 2009
    Seattle, WA
    Clean is clean enough. For pistol brass, 30 mins and they are good to go. You can shine them all you want, but once that brass leaves the chamber, it will be looking just as ugly as my 'clean enough.'
  9. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO
    For the newer loaders around here... the real purpose of tumbling brass is to clean it... remove dirt, grime, cobwebs etc. from the inside of the case and any dirt or debris from the outside of the case to avoid damage to your dies.

    Getting your brass 'shiny' is merely a cosmetic result with time and is of no real value other than personal preference. Less than a half hour in a tumbler will get several hundred pistol cases 'clean'.

    I know it seems hard to believe but the world of loading didn't start with the invention of the tumbler... there are a bunch of us who wiped off every case with a rag then loaded 'em... and if they were revolver cases we usually didn't even bother doing that.

    Of course I'm not old enough to have done this personally... I've heard stories from Fred, bob2223, Cobra64 and unclebob. They're probably taking naps right now.

  10. bush pilot

    bush pilot

    Jan 29, 2004
    Crushed walnut media (24 grit) from Harbor Tool and a cap or two of NuFinish. Tumble for 90 or so minutes and don't look back. You don't need to buy the the overpriced stuff that Lyman or RCBS sells. BTW, there are plenty of alternatives to my choice, it just happens to be what I like.
  11. Wash-ar15


    Sep 15, 2007
    Get a timer and plug it into the tumbler and set it for 2-3 hours and it should come out nice and shiny.
  12. Cobra64

    Cobra64 Deals in Facts

    I can't remember if it's before or after naps; :yawn: but I hand polish every case and bullet.



    Ever try polishing shot? It takes a long time.:faint:


  13. Myke_Hart

    Myke_Hart Handloader

    Dec 5, 2007
    Mount Eden, KY
    Mine get a 2 hour timer run. They are usually as shiney as they are gonna get by then. My shotshell still get wiped with a rag before going in the hopper.

    By the way, is that a trumpet case above. Can you say toooo much bell. :rofl:
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2010
  14. KB2MBC

    KB2MBC NRA Life Member

    Nov 18, 2009
    You might want to adjust your expander die.
  15. Cobra64

    Cobra64 Deals in Facts

    Ya think? :rofl:

    A .38 Super case got mixed in with 9mm. Sorta cool huh? :supergrin:
  16. tglynn


    Feb 16, 2009
    Tulsa, OK
    Thanks for the info. Will give them both a try and see which one I like best.
  17. Zombie Steve

    Zombie Steve Decap Pin Killa

    May 31, 2007
    Old Colorado City

    Yep. Too much cowbell. :supergrin:
  18. mteagle1


    Oct 17, 2008
    Great Falls, MT
    I start 'em out with walnut & a couple oz of mineral spirts for an hour then corn cob & NuFinish for another hour. I like them shiny.
  19. fredj338


    Dec 22, 2004
    That i spolishing rouge. You don't really want it inside your dies, it is a mild abrasive.
    I tumble for 3-4hrs in 50/50 fine wlanut & corn cob w/ a cap of polish; Nufinish or Dillon. After separating, I roll the cases around inside an old towel to remove any dust, ziplock or plastic jug for storage until reloaded.
  20. 3 hours or so in crushed walnut that I bought at Petsmart (Lizard litter something). Sometimes I throw in a capfull of Nufinish when I remember. I have some dryer sheets cut up in the tumbler too. Can't imagine the cases getting any cleaner/shinier. Also tumble cartridges for a half hour or so before I put them away.
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2010