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Have a Coke?!?

Discussion in 'Prepper Forum' started by Robb, Feb 12, 2016.

  1. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    Quick, cheap, and easy way to clean brass/steel pistol and rifle cartridges for reloading?

    Requires no:
    ...Tumblers
    ...Sonic Cleaners
    ...Expensive chemicals

    Got some Coke?

    That is right; common/full strength/undiluted can of Coke and 1/2 tspn dishwashing soap, mix together, let your brass stew in it for an hour . . .

    Then remove, soak in water with a little baking soda to neutralize, rinse again - and voila! Must rinse well; will not remove any lacquer/sealer. Maybe it will, if soaked for longer periods. Works a little better if you heat up the Coke in the microwave before you give the shells their 1 hour bath. Remove the spent primers first, and it will clean out the flash hole too. No live or dud primers - a must!

    I can of Coke = 50 9mm pistol cartridges (for my Taurus)

    Anyone tried this yet? The mild level of phosphoric acid found in Coke is the trick here. Be interesting to see how it works with an ultrasonic tank; gonna try that soon too . . .

    Have a Coke . . .


     
    #1 Robb, Feb 12, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2016
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  2. 543_Dallas

    543_Dallas Sr. Member

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    No but it's an interesting idea. If you've invested in a good reloading setup $50 for a tumbler and some media isn't too outrageous. If there is any carbonation left I'll bet the ultrasonic tank full of soda will make an awesome video. :D
     
  3. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    By the time you have stirred in the dishwashing soap, the Coke loses a lot of its CO2.

    After a bit more research, I added another step.


    Give those shells a dip in a 50/50 mix of equal parts water and common vinegar - first .

    Next, give it the Coke/soap soak for an hour; rinse well.

    Then, a bath of with a tspn of baking soda and water to neutralize the acids used (phosphoric and acetic).

    Lastly, a final bath of pure water; then let them air dry.


    My shells now look like new pennies in/out.
     
    #3 Robb, Feb 13, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2016
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  4. 543_Dallas

    543_Dallas Sr. Member

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    That should work. White vinegar keeps my stainless cookware spotless.
     
  5. binrat

    binrat WDX Club Coordinator
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    In my younger years in the Army, we would clean fuel filters on some of the reltics we had for trucks with Coke. Worked every time.
     
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  6. PA629

    PA629 Active Member

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    I purchase granulated citric acid from a local pharmacy for my brass cleaning. It's cheap (Amazon has it for around $9/lb.), safe, and easy to use. Just mix it with water, give the brass a soak, rinse with clear water, and let dry. I've been using this method for over 25 years without a problem. Just a F.Y.I.
     
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  7. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    I like that idea too.

    Beginning to think that I ought to try using some coffee, since it contains some seven different acids in abundance.
    Single solution brass cleaner?
    Maybe . . .
     
    #7 Robb, Feb 13, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2016
  8. Beetle

    Beetle Sr. Member

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    Use DIET Coke and toss in a couple Mentos.
     
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  9. TM86

    TM86 Destroyer of radios

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    I thought that was only for pressure washing.
     
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  10. DXman

    DXman Well-Known Member

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    That's pretty much the way I do mine also Robb, except I don't use the Coke.

    But I do mine with a Ultra Sonic cleaner and it takes about 20 minutes.

    I do deprime the casing first, and then the prime pockets come out nice and clean. I use Casey's Brass cleaner for the neutralizing and the final rinse, but I guess the Baking soda will work just as good, so I will have to try using that.

    I put my casings in a glass beaker with the solution, then run the Sonic cleaner for 15 min, then 5 min rinse with water and Casey's cleaner.

    I am not concerned on how "shinny" the casing are, but that they are clean.
    One more thing - it is well known that Vinegar will eat into brass and weaken it, so use caution if using it for casing's
     
    #10 DXman, Feb 14, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
  11. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    Good to know, Larry. I leave the brass in the vinegar/water mix for fifteen minutes and then neutralize w/baking soda. Just came back from Harbor Freight and bought the ultrasonic tank - which is the same as the Lyman at half the price.

    The active ingredient in the Caseys/Birchwood is phosphoric acid. It isn't too much stronger than a Coke has. To net the same effect, it just takes longer in the Coke than the Casey's does. Considerably cheaper too. Coke solution pours out and looks near black from knocking the crap out of the brass.

    Just getting into reloading, as I am doing 9mm auto and 30-06 for my brother's Garand and my Springfield. He needs 150gr/Hornady SST's and IMR 4895 and I use the same powder but use the 165gr/Hornady SST's. Both with Winchester primers. Need to do 7mm Mauser(7x57) and 250 Savage after I make enough rounds of the other stuff first . . .
     
  12. Tallman

    Tallman W9WDX Amateur Radio Member, KW4YJ EXTRA class

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    Ultrasonic cleaners work miracles on motorcycle carburetors as well! I don't care if my brass is shined up but it has to be clean. After the round is made you can always shine it up with "Never Dull". It does not leave abrasive powder behind.
     
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  13. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    Well; yeah there will always be tool, chamber, and extractor nicks, scratches, burrs, scuffs, etc. But keeping the grit out of a shell isn't going to keep it from firing - to a certain degree anyway. I would just clean up the shells with some XXXX fine steel wool even before it hits the bath, tank, and then the dies.

    Just wanted to point out that it is a lot easier and cheaper to do than one might otherwise have realized. Some have pointed out that it works and there are other substitutes that work equally well.

    When reloading in a fairly clean environment and picking up a gritty shell that leaves nasty crap on the dies - that ends up taking more time to clean/readjust - then using a simple solution can make the job smoother and overall more consistent/accurate - just makes sense.

    In addition, giving shells the Coke treatment before the ultrasonic tank will allow for more shells to be used in the tank, and thereby get a better yield vs time. Since they are pre-cleaned, the same time that it took to clean less can be changed in doing more in a single load . . .
     
    #13 Robb, Feb 14, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
  14. DXman

    DXman Well-Known Member

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    Tallman: I will do the same as you , if the casings are really tarnished then I will also use the Never dull. I do also have 3 tumblers - one for brass cleaning, one for moly coating the bullets and the other for waxing the bullets. But I don't do much of the brass tumbling anymore.

    Robb: I have loaded my '06 Rem. 700 BDL for about 25 yrs and I settled on a very good combination for that 22" tube:
    Nolser Ballistic Tip 150gr or Hornady 150 plastic tip.
    RL 19
    Fed. Match primer.
    The vel. averages around 2865 fps @ 7' from the muzzle.
    (I would advise here, that it would be better to use the Hornady plastic tip over the Ballistic tip, they are tougher bullet than the Nosler)

    Another load that I have found works really good:
    Barnes "X" 150gr Moly coated.
    RL19 powder
    Fed Match primer.
    ( this load is really acccurate - even in my Rem 7 mag)


    As far as powder goes, I stay with just two brands; Hodgons and Reloader powders.
    Just my preference, but they have served me well in the 35 + years of reloading. I quit usings IMR powders 20 yrs ago, they just couldn't produce the high velocity's with less presurre than some of the other powders.


    Hodgon 4831 I buy in a 25 lb keg.
     
    #14 DXman, Feb 14, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
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  15. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    Interesting stuff, Larry. I am just getting into learning to reload as I said. Working with vintage rifles as you know.

    The Garand is a concern of my brother, as he wants to run factory powder that was used in the era so that there isn't any damage to the operating rod in the gas return system - which can happen too easily if too strong of a load is used. My cousin built this weapon for him made from International Harvester origins. It is in as cherry condition as a rifle possibly could be imagined.

    The bullet weight for those rifles was 150gr. According to our local reloading shop owner, who was a Marine Armourer ('Mike'), said that milspec brass is a thicker variety than commercial brass, so the he must use mil brass - or even use Remington brass - to keep pressure in the same range as the original rounds were. As most other commercially made brass is slightly thinner walled and will dissipate some pressure. He also said that either Winchester or CCI primers would be sufficient to keep the ammo in milspec operation. I chose the Hornady 150gr SST for their ballistic stability to give it a better edge.

    Since my Springfield is also of vintage origin, there are real concerns too. The original military spec'd rifle was being plagued with bolt/receiver explosions due to over-pressure. The remedy was to drill two relief holes out of the receiver sides opposite of each other to alleviate any possible pressure buildup behind the chanber. So I am loading with IMR 4895 at milspec gr of powder to keep it in spec; but I chose the 165gr SST because it is has the closest weight to the original match rounds (173gr; no longer available) for the Marine sniper rifle. Which is the same rifle I have. Actually have two of these rifles, the other isn't a sporter, but an original Unertl-scoped unit, so all of my rounds are built accordingly.
     
    #15 Robb, Feb 14, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016

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