Reloading - How much prep do you do?

Discussion in 'Caliber Talk: Ammunition, Reloading, and Shooting ' started by RatBikeRod, Jul 3, 2020.

  1. simonp

    simonp Well-Known Member

    May 27, 2016
    Most of my pistol brass is indoor range pick up so its not that terribly dirty - I dry tumble, lube and load my 9 and 45. I use some lube just because everything flows a little easier on the dillon that way even with carbide dies, I've loaded without lubing and it works too.

    Ive debated depriming then cleaning, lubing and loading but not sure Id gain anything other then spending more time doing the work - for pistol at least.

    For Rifle I am strongly considering adding a wet media cleaning set up, cleaning, lube, size & deprime, trim and chamfer, clean, lube and load. This is still up in the air whether I spend the extra time and energy & if it would yield any superior results for me.
    Dub and FWoo45 like this.
  2. Heavyopp

    Heavyopp Well-Known Member

    Apr 25, 2013
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    Primer pockets need to be clean for me — just a personal thing, lots of guys say it’s not necessary for pistol cartridges

    I’ll pop primers on 17 pounds of brass at a time for my big 8” pvc drum — whatever caliber I’m doing at the time, the weight is the same

    Add 20 pounds of stainless pins — the pins I use are .062 by.495 long — pass thru the flash hole 1 at a time — never had a pin stuck in a case

    My 8” drum takes 3 gallons of water — cold water

    Add 1 - 44 magnum case full of lemi shine crystal — 2/3rd of a small plastic “shot glass” full of Regular dawn dish soap — top that small cup off with armor all wash and wax — and a couple of drops of lemi shine liquid rinse agent

    Put the full, sealed, 80 pound, pvc drum on my Home made tumbler and let it spin — usually for 8 to 10 hours, just because I’ll start it in the morning before work and stop when I get home

    Drain the black coffee colored water and separate the pins from the cases — I just recently bought the large dillon media seperator, made this job a breeze

    Rinse in cold water — lay on towel and let dry — if there is sun I’ll put the whole load outside on the towel — the brass gets hot pretty quick and dries fast — otherwise in the basement with a dehumidifier running — dry in 24 hours

    Not really a big deal once you get it figured out, and I clean a lot of brass at a time so I don’t need to do it too often

    9mm, 45, and 223 clean in the buckets — I have multiple buckets of each
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  3. Heavyopp

    Heavyopp Well-Known Member

    Apr 25, 2013

    8” drum, 6” drum and a 2 litter bottle for a size reference
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  4. gaijin

    gaijin Well-Known Member

    May 18, 2015
    From range pick up to dry tumble, Hornady 1 lube, dump in brass feeder, load.
    Obviously straight wall pistol brass.
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  5. Uncle Bob

    Uncle Bob Well-Known Member

    Sep 22, 2017
    With pistol I occasionally wet tumble, I won't use a sonic cleaner.

    Rifle? I'm a precision shooter and reloaded. I go the whole 9 yards prepping and load rifle ammo. Flash holes uniformed (just once), primer pockets uniformed after wet tumble. Sized, (annealed if needed), trimmed to length and neck turned, reamed and chamfered, neck expanded, powder thrown on electronic powder thrower, etc.

    My SDs and TIR are tiny at most.
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020
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  6. pistolpete

    pistolpete Well-Known Member

    Mar 12, 2016
    For handgun, tumble in corncob then straight to the Dillon.
    kevinlittell, FWoo45 and simonp like this.
  7. RatBikeRod

    RatBikeRod You Don’t Know Me!

    Nov 22, 2017
    Ok, maybe I need to take a bit more time with my cleaning process. THank you guys for the detail.
  8. Ethank

    Ethank Well-Known Member

    Mar 8, 2017
    What are you looking to improve?
    Dub likes this.
  9. TheCollector

    TheCollector Well-Known Member

    Aug 25, 2018
    wow...... and I thought I was anal about stuff......
    Here's my primitive method.... (qualifier... range ammo reloads) throw it in the tumbler with walnut shell media. Tumble for a while.... put in my dillion press & reload... depriming at that time.
    cgff, Mike Meints, jaypap and 5 others like this.
  10. FWoo45

    FWoo45 Well-Known Member

    Jan 13, 2017
    This is what I've been doing but I do lube em on a big baking sheet before I dump em in the case feeder. Probably overkill for 9 and 45 with carbide dies but it's been working.
    Dub and simonp like this.
  11. Dwe

    Dwe I'm a terminal 1911 Addict!

    Sep 4, 2011
    This^^^^^ 100%
    Works fine. And I’ve been reloading since 1989.
    jaypap likes this.
  12. RatBikeRod

    RatBikeRod You Don’t Know Me!

    Nov 22, 2017
    Just looking to learn. Just because I have been reloading for a long time does not mean that I cant learn something new.

    Granted, the video I was watching was a bit anal retentive about it all. However, there was a method to the madness.

    Collector, I too have just been doing that all along. I can’t remember the last time I actually cleaned a primer pocket.

    However, I do see that I might gain something from depriming first. To the extent I bought a RCBS universal depriming die tonight. I never liked all the nastiness that depriming causes on my Dillon. Just moving that one step out of rotation and then cleaning, be it wet tumbling or dry, seems to be a value.
  13. Baldwin

    Baldwin Well-Known Member

    Feb 16, 2018
    I load 9mm and .45acp and with both, I deprime/resize, wet tumble with pins, rinse in armorall wash and wax, and then lay out on a towel to dry.
    simonp likes this.
  14. kevinlittell

    kevinlittell Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2020
    Deprime size and clean in corncobs or RICE......load on a single stage...
  15. FatMikey

    FatMikey Member

    Apr 29, 2020
    This is how I've traditionally done it and it's been satisfactory. Only change I've made over past few years is depriming separately before reloading on the Dillon. For me it's smoother and less messy and I prefer to minimize the spent priming compound in my gun room.
    TheCollector likes this.
  16. jaypap

    jaypap Well-Known Member

    Feb 19, 2019
    Works for me for over thirty years. Never lubed a pistol case or cleaned a primer pocket.
    TheCollector likes this.
  17. pscipio03

    pscipio03 Fun O' Meter on FULL

    Mar 11, 2013
    45 and 9-
    Goes from range to vibratory tumbler with walnut husks and a cap of car wax to 5 gallon bucket to Dillon 1100. I don’t resize, lube or do anything else. I load about 1,000 - 1,200 per hour with no issues using the 1100 with a Mark 7.
    I do the same with 9, but I’m going to start using decapping and using a couple of spritzes of Dillon pistol lube. Then when I’m loading, I can increase the cycle rate to 1,800+ per hour. Just gotta keep up with the primers.
    Other than that, I don’t wet tumble or do anything special with pistol brass. I don’t see a need to and with 100,000+ reloads, I’ve never run into and issue that prep would have solved
  18. jcc7x7

    jcc7x7 Well-Known Member

    Nov 2, 2019
    45 plus years of dry tumble in Walnut
    Load it on a dillon
    Polish the case lube off, if used, in corn cob , go shoot it = repeat!

    Never saw the need for wet polish and pins BUT the brass sure does look shinning from them that do!!!!
  19. joepilot

    joepilot So soon old, so late smart... Supporting Addict

    May 17, 2015
    I guess I'm a rebel too then! I do exactly this. Run 'em in the dry tumbler for about 4 hours, then run 'em through the press, de-priming and sizing on the first pass. I will manually clean the primer pockets after de-priming. I don't do that many rounds at a time so it's no big deal.
  20. Jim w.

    Jim w. Well-Known Member

    Jul 27, 2016
    For bulk pistol ammo, I am in the minimum labor family. Dry tumble, LIGHT spray lube, Dillonize.
    I use little enough lube that I don't have to re-tumble to get it off.
    I DO 100% gauge and inspect my reloads because my main use is IDPA and USPSA and you don't get an alibi if a bulgy round sticks or a loose bullet sets back.

    I don't load bulk rifle ammo; my only use is target shooting, so loading is done carefully on a single stage.

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