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Ok guys so I have all of my brass sorted that I have been saving for the last few years. I have about a half of a five gallon buchet each of 9mm, 45 acp, .223, and .308. I also have a descent amount of 357 mag, 10mm, 380 acp, and 45/70. I am going to take this one step at a time and start small, but I want to get good equipment. I am going to team up with a buddy of mine who has a few different presses but has never started reloading, he just acquired them in trade over the last few years. He is working on getting his reloading room set up and such. I'm thinking I just want to start getting all of my brass de-primed and cleaned up. As for reloading, we will probably start with 9mm and 45acp since it is what we shoot most and from what I understand they will be relatively easy to learn on.

I have been doing homework lately on how to tumble brass as the tumbler is going to by one of my contributions. From what I understand, traditional tumblers will not clean out the primer pocket even if brass is de-primed before tumbling. Is this correct? If it is this seems like a pain having to go and manually clean out every primer pocket. I came across some stainless steel tumbling media which needs to be used with a rotary tumbler, but will clean out primer pockets while tumbling. It will be more expensive but would be a huge bonus to not have to do that manually. I then heard some statements that stainless steel media hardens brass and the brass needs to be annealed after. Can somebody elaborate on this for me please. Also how about ultrasonic cleaners?

I will probably be doing most of the reloading by my buddy's but would at least like to get a single stage press at my house so I can at least stary de-priming my 9mm and 45acp. Any suggestions? Also what type of die would I need? Can I de-prime and re-size in the same step?

Sorry for the lengthy post guys any and all comments and suggestions are welcome. Thanks in advance
 

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Huh, Ive got a Lyman tumbler and after depriming the brass Ill toss them back in and it seems to clean the 45acp large and small primer pockets just fine. Its just a regular tumbler with crushed walnuts. I could be missing something though, you never know.

The thing with reloading is that it is so opinionated its tough to get sound, un-biased, information or advice from word of mouth. Thats my opinion lol.
 

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I've been reloading for well over 20 years and have never cleaned primer pockets. I've always used plain walnut media and change it when it becomes a fine powder. ;)

If I were shooting strictly benchrest and looking for one ragged hole at 300 yards, maybe. But that would be only one of about 6 extra steps I'd be including in my reloading regimen.

For gun games (CAS, IDPA, USPSA, etc.), plinking, training, or just punching holes in paper, I find it absolutely unnecessary.
 

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When I used walnut media I wasn't worried about cleaning the primer pockets. I always remove the primers before cleaning. What was a real pain was when a little piece of the media would get stuck in the primer pocket. The other pain was accidental spilling of media on the floor or the bench. And the dust. I switched to a tumbler and stainless steel pins and water. Couldn't be happier. Yes they clean out the primer pocket. But you now have to dry brass. In the summer I take the advice of greenies and use solar power. In the winter I use the oven. The other pain is separating out the pins. Wet pins stick to things a little. And then the pins have to be dried like everything else. But at least they are magnetic so a magnet helps to pick up the extras. An old frying pan works to dry the pins.

Like everything in life, there are pluses and minuses. Some methods are more expensive than others. The good thing is you can experiment. Used reloading equipment has a high resale value. So try it and learn what works for you.
 

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As above... NO NEED to clean out the primer pockets... tumble/clean brass then deprime/resize. That keeps clean brass in your dies, so they dont get all scratched up inside from any dirt that may be on brass if it was picked up off the ground.
A standard CARBIDE 3 die set will allow you to deprime/resize in one step. The next die is for flaring the case mouth, the third for seating/crimping. Pretty much whichever maker YOU like will be fine. LEE, RCBS, HORNADY, LYMAN, REDDING, ETC...ETC... I personally use LEE dies when possible. I DO have several RCBS sets too... just PREFER the LEE ones. as far as a basic press... again... I would go with a LEE cast iron "O" press. it will last YOUR grandkids forever when they start reloading with THEIR grandkids. lol
 

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I've been using a Lee 3-4 stage progressive press for years, and love it. They are pretty reasonably priced, at Bass Pro and Cabelas. You can use almost anyone's dies. Almost all current die sets de-prime and re-size at the same time, then you can measure and clean before the next step. Good luck, have fun. Oh yeah, you're going to need some powder scales to do it right. I've got a Lee balance beam and a Lyman digital. The digital is faster, but I like to check its validity occasionally with the balance beam.
 
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