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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok I am relatively new to reloading (barely over 1200 rounds), my father and I are doing both doing it I am doing 45 acp and he is doing his rifle. My question is how important is it to clean the brass in a tumbler and media before reloading? We don't currently do this and was wondering if this would be why some rounds were key holing last IDPA season.
 

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I loaded for years without cleaning any brass. These were .357 mag mostly, and I was using Unique and H110. I finally bought RCBS tumbler, and used it heavily until the motor burned out.

In short, it's nice to clean the brass, but not absolutely necessary. I did wipe the cases in the old days, just to remove grit and dirt, but that was all. Now, I like my brass to look nice and shiny.
 

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Ok I am relatively new to reloading (barely over 1200 rounds), my father and I are doing both doing it I am doing 45 acp and he is doing his rifle. My question is how important is it to clean the brass in a tumbler and media before reloading? We don't currently do this and was wondering if this would be why some rounds were key holing last IDPA season.
I dont think a dirty casing holds enough influence to keyhole a bullet, but rather lack of bullet stability, most likely due to you load recipe. Cleaning brass is important for many reasons. Dirty casings hide indications of a case that maybe near failure, clean casings results in easier resizing, less garbage inside your dies and your firearm when fired. Cleaned casings
also show up better on the ground after being fired, helps the pickup process.
 

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I don't believe your keyholing has anything to do with whether or not your brass is clean.

What are you shooting these out of and what kind of speed are you getting?
 

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how were your rounds key-hole-ing at 15' or whatever short distance ??? not possible IMO, not trying to sharpshoot but what distance was this at?

but like said, not your brass. A good wash in detergent will also work, just like doing the dishes!

tumbler of some sort is best but not 100% necessary.
 

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i clean my brass for the following reasons.

1, so I can better inspect it for damage like fisures and cracks, and also as corrosion protection / identification.

after tumble I US clean mine then dry and wipe them down.

deprime, size, trim inspect.

soundguy
 

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I am with clipper -
tumble/vibrate is nice but not necessary -- It mostly provides profit to the equiptment sellers.
a wipe down or wash if you like first -- reload, then a wipe down with a solvent moistened rag to remove oil residue is satisfactory --
Avoid the nonsense that makes reloading seem like nuclear science.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
how were your rounds key-hole-ing at 15' or whatever short distance ??? not possible IMO, not trying to sharpshoot but what distance was this at?

targets ranged from 3 feet to 25 feet was shooting lead 230 gr. 45 acp out of my Glock 21, (yes I know lead bullets bad for Glocks). Not sure how many grs of Win 231 powder was used (father made them when he was snowed in from work).
 

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I agree with the guy that says it's the load.
The bullet doesn't care if the brass is dirty or not, you have an issue with the load.

Cleaning is ALWAYS a good idea, if for no other reason to protect the dies from the hard carbon created when firing...
 

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how were your rounds key-hole-ing at 15' or whatever short distance ??? not possible IMO, not trying to sharpshoot but what distance was this at?

targets ranged from 3 feet to 25 feet was shooting lead 230 gr. 45 acp out of my Glock 21, (yes I know lead bullets bad for Glocks). Not sure how many grs of Win 231 powder was used (father made them when he was snowed in from work).
Glock is clear in that you should never shoot "lead" unjacketed rounds in your Glock. Glock doesn't use conventional lands and grooves rifling in their weapons because their unique approach gives better accuracy. However that unique approach tends to lead badly if one shoots unjacketed rounds. But ... some do shoot lead rounds and just take extra-ordinary measures to clean the barrel after range sessions.

But if you are determined to reload and especially if you are determined to reload unjacketed lead rounds, then I'd say buy something else.
 

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i'm not a glock owner/shooter.. but have a question.

if you shot some lead, and then finished up with jacketed rounds.. would it help any or not?
 

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I am with Gray Wolf on the reasons I clean my brass, especially number 3 - I like pretty ammo!!!!

soundguy, I don't/won't shoot a clock either. I don't know if it will matter or not, but just about every time I shoot lead, the last few rounds through the gun will be jacketed bullets. Why? I don't know. It just always made sense to me to do it!!!
 

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i do it on my 38's. i shoot lead at the range.. then run a cyl full of jacketed to finish up.

dunno if it helps.. but seems to me it might? :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Glock is clear in that you should never shoot "lead" unjacketed rounds in your Glock. Glock doesn't use conventional lands and grooves rifling in their weapons because their unique approach gives better accuracy. However that unique approach tends to lead badly if one shoots unjacketed rounds. But ... some do shoot lead rounds and just take extra-ordinary measures to clean the barrel after range sessions.

But if you are determined to reload and especially if you are determined to reload unjacketed lead rounds, then I'd say buy something else.
Didn't realize that about the barrels till after I bought the bullets but other then that batch of 500 I won't be buying any more lead bullets. Also I made sure to clean my Glock after every match and range time.
 

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Caspers, what size are the lead bullets you purchased? And what is the bore size of your glock? Cast lead bullets need to be .002 over sized or they will lead up barrels and if they are under sized that would cause your key holing.

Soundguy,

Never shoot one then the other without cleaning your bore first. Adding lead over copper or copper over brass is not something you want... It will be so much harder to clean if you shoot both with out cleaning in between.


Doc
 

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I loaded for years without cleaning any brass. These were .357 mag mostly, and I was using Unique and H110. I finally bought RCBS tumbler, and used it heavily until the motor burned out.

In short, it's nice to clean the brass, but not absolutely necessary. I did wipe the cases in the old days, just to remove grit and dirt, but that was all. Now, I like my brass to look nice and shiny.
I too, reloaded for several years before I got a a tumbler (a real tumbler; rotary). No, my dies didn't wear out, and yes I inspected each one and didn't have any trouble spotting defects. One thing I have to admit though; it's easier to find your shiny brass in the dirt/grass/rocks when shooting outdoors...
 
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