Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Any chemists out there?

  1. #1

    Any chemists out there?

    Hi all. Thinking about washing cases, I was wondering which type of cleaning chemicals work best at removing carbon / soot deposits from brass without eating the case brass excessively and also for removing the lube after sizing.
    Are alcaline cleaners better than acids? I know some folks recommend citric acid in ultrasonic baths, but is this the best route to follow?
    Many years ago I bought & still use a laboratory cleaner liquid which I think is an alcaline type called Micro that is very good at removing black powder deposits and is also ok on nitro deposits. That product is no longer available and I'm in touch with the manufacturer International Products trying to find the best current product and get samples.
    Of late I've used the following procedure to prep my brass.
    Deprime, Micro cleaner (2%) hot wash, Tumble in impregnated media to polish, size using One Shot Spray which Hornady say won't contaminate the powder charge, trim etc then load.


    Crocodiles are dinosaurs that didn't screw up!

  2. #2
    Elemental carbon is, to all intents, insoluble. What you really need is a good releasing agent, typically an ammoniacal solution with an anionic surfactant of some sort. This will help release the carbon from a surface.
    I would suggest that the equivalent of the product 'micro' is probably decon 90, which just happens to have the chemical properties described above.
    Anything acid (whether citric, ascorbic, malic etc etc) will etch the surface of brass, basically dissolving copper and zinc from the surface. When I say etch we are talking sub micron changes at the surface which may be acceptable.
    If you intend using an ultrasonic bath put your brass into a glass beaker containing a room temperature 5% solution of decon 90 and sonic treat for about 5mins ensuring the base of the beaker isnt in contact with the base of the ultrasonic bath (use a plastic support, I used to use 5mm cuts of water pipe on the bottom of the bath)

    Hope this helps
    Below is a link to my website.
    Quad sticks

  3. #3
    Thanks Limulus I'll try Decon for a sample.
    I've never tried ultrasonic cleaning on brass (too tight fisted to buy a tank!) - I tumble wash batches of cases in a big plastic military flare container with scalding hot, diluted Micro. Rinsing after washing is a big must or bad staining results.
    It doesn't dissolve the carbon but it does loosen a lot of the muck making it easier for the vibratory bowl to finish the job.


  4. #4
    Micro 90 is sold by Westlander - he usually takes a table at the Phoenix and Trafalgar meetings at Bisley.

  5. #5
    International Products UK office (Google is your friend) will send you samples of their Micro 90 & other cleaners FOC - All you need to do is ask & you'll get quite a good size bottle. As it is reusable the sample will last for ages if it turns out to be as effective as the old Micro cleaner that was discontinued.!


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts