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Cleaning Old Shotgun Shells

  • trophy19
    Participant
    Maple Grove, MN
    Posts: 1160
    #2164737

    Have a couple hundred high brass shotgun shells that have developed minor corrosion (rust or cupric oxide) on the brass over the years. Any suggestions for cleaning these up; tumbling, solvent, other?

    Thanks
    Pete

    Brian Klawitter
    Keymaster
    Minnesota/Wisconsin Mississippi River
    Posts: 58712
    #2164744

    Hey Pete, if they are not spent, I would avoid a tumbler.

    I have a cigar box full with the same issue, well except for the all plastic shells.

    Jimmy Jones
    Participant
    Posts: 288
    #2164768

    I’d just use a rag and try to wipe away any surface stuff but leave the discoloration and patina on them.

    lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3243
    #2164790

    Some fine steel wool and a little wd40 or gun oil.

    TheFamousGrouse
    Participant
    St. Paul, MN
    Posts: 9541
    #2164801

    Tumble them in corn cob media is what I’d do. Don’t overdo it, I use a timer on my vibra-tumbler and set it so that I don’t forget the machine is on.

    maddogg
    Participant
    Posts: 330
    #2164883

    Flitz or any metal polish.

    robby
    Participant
    Quad Cities
    Posts: 2491
    #2164893

    Flitz or any metal polish.

    This or Brasso too. Can always use a bit of emery cloth and light oil. I have done this and works fine. I still have some old 20 ga. shells my Cousin reloaded back in the 70’s. They still shoot and kill fine.

    Brittman
    Participant
    Posts: 510
    #2165884

    3M abrasive PAD (pad – not sandpaper) works very well in getting brass pretty clean. You do not need any cleaning chemicals.

    JEREMY
    Participant
    BP
    Posts: 1393
    #2165928

    Why not just shoot them. My grandpa had a bunch of crusty old shells I shot them all.

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