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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I've been reloading for about 9 months and have done a couple thousand 300 blackout and 9mm rounds (each), and 500 .380 rounds.

My set-up is a Hornady LnL progressive, dies are all Hornady (all Custom Grade dies). I'm set up to for 300 blackout, 9mm, .380, and .45.

I shoot at an indoor range and pick up tons of brass...so no brass picked up from the dirt. And, I clean with an ultrasonic cleaner.

The process I follow with brass is send 'em through the ultrasonic, rinse, dry, de-prime/re-size, then back through the ultrasonic, rinse and dry again.

I'm feeling particularly lazy right now so I'm looking for enablement (or a slap upside the head):

What are your thoughts on skipping the first round of cleaning/rinsing/drying and going straight from the range floor to de-priming/re-sizing?

Any and all "you're an ignorant idiot" abuse is welcome;).
 

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I am not familiar with ultrasonic cleaners, so I cannot answer your specific question, but I do not need shinny clean brass. I clean to remove any grit etc. that will cause wear on the dies or firearm.
 

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I dont think Id run cruddy brass through my dies but ive heard some that will. Especially if they arent very sooty. Sounds like you may need a Lee universal deacpping die and skip a wash cycle.

All my pistol gets 2 rounds through the press.
Once for decap, wet tumble, dried,and stored.
Then I size and load in the second pass.

Bottlneck gets 3 passes.
Deprime, wash, dry.
Size, trim, champher and debur. Short wash to knock the lube and brass shavings off.
Then only a powder drop, seat, and crimp on the third pass.

I only process in batches of 500 for rifle and1000 pistol. Always have a batch in the prep cycle to work on when im bored with plenty stored to load as needed.
 

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As far as 9mm goes, I only clean before I deprime, and that is the end of cleaning for my little brass babies. I use a dry tumble in corncob media, but I dont think the method of cleaning matters in this situation. My first batch of 357Sig got double cleaned, as I lubed them with Hornady One Shot before sizing, and threw them back in for another tumble while I resized the next 200 I had lubed. The next time I loaded, I skipped the second dry tumble as I read in some places it was not necessary, and this turned out to be true. Now, I do a 1-2 hour dry tumble, and head straight to the press.

I believe the only reason you would need a second batch of cleaning after depriming would be if there was some sort of lacquer in the primer pocket, or you noticed it was excessively dirty and had issues seating primers. I had some issues with getting corncob media stuck in the primer pockets with that first batch of 357Sig I double cleaned. While this wouldnt be a problem with your ultrasonic cleaner, you might end up getting a TINY bit of moisture or cleaner stuck in that pocket, unless youre drying them in a food dehydrator or something similar.
 

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For pistol, I dry tumble them until they are clean and then I load them. I don't do any more work than I have to.
For rifle, I will tumble until clean. Then de-prime, size and trim them and another shorter run through the tumbler to get all the case lube off. Then I will load them.

For the first couple of months I reloaded I did not have a tumbler. I just rinsed and dried my cases and loaded them. They didn't look pretty but it worked. I think the only thing you would need to look out for when de-priming and sizing without cleaning, is carbon and dirt gumming up your dies requiring you to clean them more often.
 

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Here is my process:

1. If brass is grungy, I will run it through my tumbler.

2. Once brass has been tumbled or if it is reasonable clean to start with, I de-prime
which is the same step as resizing.

3. Then I run it through my ultrasonic for approximately ten minutes.

4. Rinse in the sink with hot tap water.

5. Lay it out in paper plates dry with a blow dryer (hand held hair dryer).

I see no need to run it through the ultrasonic twice. I do want it de-primed prior to the ultrasonic so as to clean the primer pocket. One addition comment to the above involves rifle and pistol rounds like 357 Sig which require resizing lube. Once de-primed and resized the ultrasonic will take care of removing the resizing lube. A tiny bit of resizing lube also helps with resizing 9mm since it is not a completely straight walled brass (only a smidge every few pieces of brass).

I think by only ultrasonic cleaning it once will save you considerably since it precludes the drying time and wear on your ultrasonic.
 

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Pistol brass , First I sort by head stamp , then tumble in walnut shell . then I size , and deprime . Next I wet tumble with stainless steel pins , dry , and inspect . Brass is ready to load , or store .
 

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I decap, run through my cleaner (stainless steel media), dry, sort if needed, hand prime and inspect each case, lube, resize (minus decap pin), drop powder, drop bullet, seat/crimp, inspect.

I have an LNL also but I don't like the primer station much, I just have my own system I do when I sit in the family room and sort, inspect and prime while my wife may help or we may just chit chat. Either way I like being by her.

Hope this helps.
 

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I clean in the ultrasonic cleaner then dry in the Hornady dryer. This is to get the burnt carbon off so it doesn't wear on my decapping/ resizing die. Then I tumble the deprimed cases in corn cob until they are nice and shiny. This is my process because I'm a little OCD about my reloads and because it's not very labor intensive except the decapping. The machines are doing the cleaning work.
 

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I dont think Id run cruddy brass through my dies but ive heard some that will. Especially if they arent very sooty. Sounds like you may need a Lee universal deacpping die and skip a wash cycle.
This is your answer. dirty brass won't hurt a Lee (or any other manufacturer's) universal decapping die.
 

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Brass processing is in direct proportion to time and equipment.
Here is how I do pistol brass.
I like it clean and shiny.
1. 30 minutes vibrating in walnut media .
2 . Size/deprime
3. One hour steel pin tumbler
Now the brass looks factory new with primer pockets and inside case shiny.
Cuisine
 

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No need to clean twice in the ultrasonic. Go ahead deprime and then throw in the tub. Also you mention drying so im not sure if your letting naturally dry or performing some type of drying cycle. If your not in a rush to load the brass right away leaving them dry naturally is fine. Take out of the ultrasonic, rinse and throw in a bin
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
No need to clean twice in the ultrasonic. Go ahead deprime and then throw in the tub. Also you mention drying so im not sure if your letting naturally dry or performing some type of drying cycle. If your not in a rush to load the brass right away leaving them dry naturally is fine. Take out of the ultrasonic, rinse and throw in a bin
I'm letting them dry naturally.
 

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I decap my brass with a de-capping die then soak them in a hot water, dawn dish soap, and vinegar mixture for an hour or so. Then let them dry before placing in a vibrating tumbler with walnut shell media for and hour. Comes out looking better than factory new brass and certainly no crude on the brass before resizing.
 

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Range Brass & Good Brass

I define range brass as any brass that I can't count the reloads, and is for target shooting. Reloaded brass from Georgia Arms or other reloaders falls in this class. Good brass is purchased new from Starline, once fired new factory loads, or pulled new brass. Range brass gets the corn cob/walnut media cleaning with polish, then deprimed and resized. If case lube is required, the lube is removed before continuing. Good brass gets media cleaning, deprime and resize (lube as necessary), and then ultrasonic cleaning before continuing the reloading process. I shoot up the range brass within months of reloading, but good brass reloads may sit for years. So far, no issues.
 
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