Advice and recommendations on Pin tumblers/wet tumblers

thescoutranch

TN Transplant - Loving it here in TX
Mar 5, 2020
511
93
Georgetown
I have a Thumler tumbler but never use it. Vibratory with corn cob media is the easiest way to go. Your choice though. You will end up with beautiful brass that will probably have water spots and will be harder to run through a press than vibratory cleaned brass that has some cleaner-lube added to it with corn cob media. We all learn from our experiences and reloading is definitely a learning experience. If I had it to to do over I wouldn't have bought a SS tumbler or an ultrasonic unit.
If you decide to get rid of your Tumblr or ultrasonic cleaner, shoot me a note. I have use the vibratory media cleaners before and I’m willing to try other techniques.
 

andre3k

Active Member
TGT Supporter
Aug 8, 2008
408
63
Houston
I have two wet tumblers. One thats based off the Thumler and and I also have a FART. Both work well but I prefer the FART for capacity. I mainly tumble 9/40/223 in large batches and The FART makes it easy and I like having the built in timer as well. Set it for 3 hrs and go about my day. I ran about 3k 9mm today through it. Im not a fan of a lot of Frankfort Arsenals stuff but their wet tumbler is worth it. I stopped using pins in mine just for my pistol brass, it makes the process go a bit quicker and the brass is clean enough.

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
 

thescoutranch

TN Transplant - Loving it here in TX
Mar 5, 2020
511
93
Georgetown
I do have an old harbor freight concrete mixer that I’ve had for about a decade. I’ve used it for cleaning car parts, nuts and bolts, fittings, just about anything I could fit in there that wouldn’t get damaged , when I was working on old internationals. Oh yeah, I have also used it to mix ~26,000 lb of concrete mix since I moved to TX (2 years ago)
Some silica blasting media, water and Dawn dish soap did an amazing job on derusting and degreasing the parts.

I did consider adopting it for the brass, but it is just so loud and big, it has to be run outside due to the size of it. I didn’t think my neighbors would appreciate listening to me tumbling brass in it. LOL
 

plinkr

Active Member
Feb 18, 2019
220
43
US
I do have an old harbor freight concrete mixer that I’ve had for about a decade. I’ve used it for cleaning car parts, nuts and bolts, fittings, just about anything I could fit in there that wouldn’t get damaged , when I was working on old internationals. Oh yeah, I have also used it to mix ~26,000 lb of concrete mix since I moved to TX (2 years ago)
Some silica blasting media, water and Dawn dish soap did an amazing job on derusting and degreasing the parts.

I did consider adopting it for the brass, but it is just so loud and big, it has to be run outside due to the size of it. I didn’t think my neighbors would appreciate listening to me tumbling brass in it. LOL


Sent from my SM-G986U using Tapatalk
 

Polkwright

Member
Mar 3, 2021
77
18
Fort Worth, TX
I wanted to try it as we are temporarily in an apartment and the vibratory one I have is loud and dusty. I bought the Harbor Freight 2-drum model to try it out. Pretty cheap. It works really well but lacks capacity to run big batches. I kind of like the two drums so I can do two calibers at once if I want. It's pretty quite. Quieter than the old-school dishwasher in the apartment.

A couple of hours with hot water, pins, a pinch of Lemi Shine, and a squirt of Dawn and you've got new looking brass. You need a magnet of some type to separate the pins. Some don't like draining and drying brass but to me it's no more trouble than the vibratory tumblers, it's quicker, and it does a better job. I just lay out the brass on an old towel in front of a box fan. The wife has a food dehydrator on her thrift-store shopping list.

I won't go back. I'll keep using the Harbor Freight one but when things settle down I'll get a bigger one for .38 brass and use the Harbor Freight one for things I don't shoot a lot of.
 

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