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Thread: Tumbling live rounds?

  1. #1

    Tumbling live rounds?

    Some time back I recall a post or comment about tumbling live rounds, I myself was a little bit leery of the idea, but this last couple of days I thought I would test my resolve!, some .223 foxing rounds that had suffered some serious rain applications these last few months had exhibited a little verdigrese, so, I loaded up the tumbler with the media & about forty rounds of mixed calibres, .223/270/7mm, & some .17HMR that had got damp, just to give some peace of mind I shuttered off the tumbler (didn't want to have the wrong effect on the gunroom! ) 8 hours later & no nasty occurences, all nice & bright again, so just a wipe off to remove any fine dust, & test fire some. No dead man's clicks so far!........... not a completely definitive test, but seems ok to do this. What are your comments?Steve.

  2. #2
    Hmmm I know that some have done this in America with surplus ammunititon however it can dmage the powders in the cartridges and alter the way they burn. Pressures could be altered as I don't know enough about how any of this might effect them I would not do it.

    However I am not you so all I can say really is good luck.

  3. #3
    DON'T DO IT!

    At least that's what I've been told: the burning rate of powders is partly governed by size and shape of the lumps also the coating, if you tumble loaded rounds long enough then you'll risk changing all of the above and the burning rate could sky rocket...

  4. #4
    Chrony seems to disagree so far, but hey, It was only a trial to see if it was safe to the point of 8 hours agitation! 8)

  5. #5
    I no nothing about this, but here are a couple of other forum discussions on the matter. In particular I have pasted Ten_X_Ammo's comments, which seemed logical.

    At the end I've posted a link to an Accurate Shooter commentary where one chap says to definitely not do it. But at the end of the piece the people responding to it say he is wrong and it is quite safe

    September 19, 2005, 10:14 PM
    START QUOTE "I can attest that we too have been tumbling live ammo for about 30 years, without incedent. There has been an issue on a decapping machine once, before I was even born, and of course you can't avoid the occasional primer pop in an ammo load when you run millions of rounds a year. We tumble litterally millions of rounds a year, live, without incident.

    You have to of course tumble them with the proper amout of product, walnut shell, corn cob or what have you. If not, you may end up with more tiny dents in larger cases (45-70) than you would like.

    Remember that rounds like 9mm and such have a small volume inside the case the ISN'T filled with powder. Powder is SO light and HARD that I could not possibly see it breaking itself down with just a slight area to move in. I mean, you would probably have to shake a half full keg VERY hard for quite a while to develop a sufficient amount of wear on the powder to matter.

    I suppose if I HAD to worry about something, it would be with a long grained powder. The would tend, based totally on physics to break more easily than a typical ball powder. Obviously if one grain struck another right in its center with its own tip, it would potentially have enough of a 'lever arm' to snap the other grain.

    I would say, if you are tumbling slowly enough, with enough 'polising compound' you will be more than fine. No need to be turning ammo at 1800 RPM if you know what i mean!" END QUOTE

  6. #6
    powder and ammo gets shipped all over the world on planes, trains, boats and automobiles with no degredation, so why would a little tumbling cause it?

    stick to compressed loads and it aint going to move at all!

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