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So, I've read pros and cons of tumbling loaded rounds to clean them. I cleaned 4 m1 carbine rounds, circa 1940s Austrian manufacture with Fritz by hand with the cartridge rim chucked in a drill.took a long time. The other 418 went into the tumbler 150 at a time with 2.5 lbs media and 2.5 Oz. Fritz for 1 hour. Some look brand new but others are still discolored but clean and smooth. That's what I was after. No explosion! Would there have been a better way?
 

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Mims, FL

I have tumbled many loaded rounds (30-30, 357, 38, 30-06, etc.) with no ill effect. Tumbling them does not produce strikes against primers. It might have an effect on cylindrical powder, but probably no more than hauling them around for 70-years (WWII ammo).

Tumble (about a half hour), clean the dust off, load, and shoot. They do not have to look "factory fresh".

Return the empty cases for reuse to soak for 20-minutes in 2% lemon juice-water. When dry, put them into the tumbler for cleaning and polishing. Most liquid car waxes, mixed into walnut or corn media, will do the job as well as Fritz, but at a lower cost.
 

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Still have a "case spinner" kit that chucks into an electric drill. Steel wool held against the spinning shell or case, followed by brasso on a cloth shines them like a piece of jewelry. Not for volume, but for display I've never found a better way. Slow. Very slow.

Yes, I've tumbled live rounds. Never a problem except the residue from media. Never tried tracers nor incendiary. Don't have an urge to do that.
 

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The metal cases don't have to be perfectly clean & shiny to fire. If they have some discoloration you need to determine what is causing the discoloration before you shoot them. Some powders breakdown & will cause all kinds of problems.
 

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The metal cases don't have to be perfectly clean & shiny to fire. If they have some discoloration you need to determine what is causing the discoloration before you shoot them. Some powders breakdown & will cause all kinds of problems.
Ackumpucky on old ammo can hide dangerous things - cleaning can really expose problems before cases separate, cracks enlarge, etc. Might want to re-lube after cleaning sometimes. Little case lube on a cloth works well for me.
 

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Ackumpucky on old ammo can hide dangerous things - cleaning can really expose problems before cases separate, cracks enlarge, etc. Might want to re-lube after cleaning sometimes. Little case lube on a cloth works well for me.
I reload so if I have questionable ammo I would pull it down & inspect it good inside & out before I would risk shooting it. Just cleaning is not enough to tell if it's safe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So, I've read pros and cons of tumbling loaded rounds to clean them. I cleaned 4 m1 carbine rounds, circa 1940s Austrian manufacture with Fritz by hand with the cartridge rim chucked in a drill.took a long time. The other 418 went into the tumbler 150 at a time with 2.5 lbs media and 2.5 Oz. Fritz for 1 hour. Some look brand new but others are still discolored but clean and smooth. That's what I was after. No explosion! Would there have been a better way?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I reload so if I have questionable ammo I would pull it down & inspect it good inside & out before I would risk shooting it. Just cleaning is not enough to tell if it's safe.
Would you mind looking at the photos I posted of 30 m1 carbine ammo and give me your opinion on whether to shoot the discolored ones or not? Thank
 

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If they chamber, they will shoot but be aware, grit not cleared off of the case (4 on left) could result in difficult case extractions. Some loaded cartridge tumbling would benefit the more corroded cases. Two characteristics to consider: discolored and smooth cartridge sides, together, would OK to me to shoot.
 

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Would you mind looking at the photos I posted of 30 m1 carbine ammo and give me your opinion on whether to shoot the discolored ones or not? Thank
Pick out the worst one of the 4 rounds on the left, pull it apart & check the inside of the case, if it looks ok then they are all safe to shoot.
I have shot much uglier rounds than what you have there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
If they chamber, they will shoot but be aware, grit not cleared off of the case (4 on left) could result in difficult case extractions. Some loaded cartridge tumbling would benefit the more corroded cases. Two characteristics to consider: discolored and smooth cartridge sides, together, would OK to me to shoot.
Thanks. All have been tumbled equal time. I will dig out the worst and tumble longer and take apart the very worst one and inspect inside as 7.62 Man suggests. Thanks again
 
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