Handloading wet tumbled brass
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    Handloading wet tumbled brass

    I loaded a batch of new Star Line brass and had trouble with the cases sticking in the flaring die (Dillon 550b) I am wondering if I wet tumble brass with stainless pins if I will have the same problem with brass sticking in the die. When I clean brass in a vibratory cleaner I never have that problem. I'm concerned if I invest in a wet tumbler and media that I will create the same problem I experienced with the new brass. Any experience or suggestions are appreciated. Thanks

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    Are you using carbide dies?

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    Yes using Dillon carbide dies, although I'm not sure the flaring die is carbide

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    If the dies are not carbide then a case lube is required.

    Also check the dies and make sure it does not have gunk build up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Otintx View Post
    If the dies are not carbide then a case lube is required.

    Also check the dies and make sure it does not have gunk build up.
    Yes, what he said!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alamstutz View Post
    I loaded a batch of new Star Line brass and had trouble with the cases sticking in the flaring die (Dillon 550b) I am wondering if I wet tumble brass with stainless pins if I will have the same problem with brass sticking in the die. When I clean brass in a vibratory cleaner I never have that problem. I'm concerned if I invest in a wet tumbler and media that I will create the same problem I experienced with the new brass. Any experience or suggestions are appreciated. Thanks
    I've heard that new Starline brass is pretty tight...

    If you buy new Starline brass, I assume you can reuse it multiple times... See if you have the same problem when you load it a second time... Might save you buying a wet tumbler that you don't need.

    I don't have a 550, but I think the powder funnel die is the same for most of Dillon's presses... Sometimes the cases seem to stick because there is a tight seal and a vacuum forms making the cases sort of "pop" off the die... Clean off the die every once in a while...
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    Yes, completely cleaning the case is what causes the problem.
    As a note, cases can't stick in a die that only flares. What you have is an expander die that opens the case ID to near bullet diameter and also flares the case mouth.
    To solve the problem:
    1) Stop "idiot" cleaning and leave the all-natural dry lube in the case
    or
    2) Accept that the expanding step will be difficult with your shiny cases
    or
    3) use some micro-fine mica or graphite powder on case neck interior
    or
    4) polish the expander plug to a mirror finish (but, in my experience, is not a guaranteed fix)
    or
    5) get the Lee Universal "Expander" die that doesn't expand at all and only flares.
    Of course, if you only flare the case mouth, you are more likely to end up with the bullet seating crooked and you'll need a Lee FCD to "iron out" the case bulge where the crooked bullet pushes the case out.
    Last edited by Noylj; 03-08-2017 at 01:14 PM.

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    "Idiot cleaning?"

    What's idiotic about it?
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    I looked at Dillon's 550b user manual... The 550b powder funnel looks to be the same as a 1050's powder funnel... My powder funnel occasionally grasps on to the cases too... I suspect the two smooth surfaces create a vacuum... it makes a clunking noise and jars the press a bit... I don't like it, but I've learned to live with it... When I change powder, I pull the powder funnel out and clean it... When I start a new reloading session, I wipe the junk that accumulates on it off with a q-tip or paper towel...

    ps: Don't put anything inside the cases you are reloading except powder...
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    It's not the wet tumbling, it's just because of the brand new brass. Actually wet tumbling with SS pins with a little dish detergent and LemiShine makes the brass come out super awesome, way cleaner than my old method of vibratory walnut loaded with a teaspoon of mineral oil to clean, followed by corn with a teaspoon of nufinish car polish to shine. Some guys even throw SS pins in the mixture on top of that and just leave them in the mix. The easy way to fix the sticktion problem on your 550 powder thru expander die, station number 2, is too spray a little dry lube on the drop tube and let it dry. And when you have fired the new cases, the problem is gone. I only use once fired brass because 20,000 rounds of new brass a year is too expensive, and I get once fired indoor brass for free!

    walnut and corn, from nasty to really pretty good

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    wet tumbling, and roll sized, super awesome! you don't actually need it to be that clean though...

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