Wet tumbler sticky sludge

z77280

Sergeant of the Hide
Full Member
Minuteman
Nov 14, 2018
256
43
Montgomery, TX
Got a full size FA tumbler drum on a homemade roller setup that I have been using for 2 years now without issue. I run stainless pins (will switch to Southern Shine flakes after later on) and use the standard Lemi-Shine mixture with RO water. I have a digital timer and always tumble the same amount of brass for the same time.

The other day I forgot I had tumbled some and it sat overnight and came out black, no big deal…or so I thought. I rinsed everything out/off and re-ran the batch. It came out dull looking. I ran another batch and same thing, dull and no luster. Began looking into this and found a slightly brass colored but tacky/sticky to the touch sludge had adhered to all the inside surfaces. I tried 99% rubbing alcohol, 409, and Purple Power without luck to remove this. Straight CLR with a green scrub pad finally took it off. Has anyone else ran into this issue?

Pic is hard to see, but right is how my brass usually looks and left is dull. It’s like a high gloss vs eggshell paint.
 

Attachments

  • E7297266-D2E1-4FEE-B35B-5E5F02CEA94E.jpeg
    E7297266-D2E1-4FEE-B35B-5E5F02CEA94E.jpeg
    532.7 KB · Views: 49

straightshooter1

Private
Full Member
Minuteman
Dec 5, 2017
1,669
957
AZ
Got a full size FA tumbler drum on a homemade roller setup that I have been using for 2 years now without issue. I run stainless pins (will switch to Southern Shine flakes after later on) and use the standard Lemi-Shine mixture with RO water. I have a digital timer and always tumble the same amount of brass for the same time.

The other day I forgot I had tumbled some and it sat overnight and came out black, no big deal…or so I thought. I rinsed everything out/off and re-ran the batch. It came out dull looking. I ran another batch and same thing, dull and no luster. Began looking into this and found a slightly brass colored but tacky/sticky to the touch sludge had adhered to all the inside surfaces. I tried 99% rubbing alcohol, 409, and Purple Power without luck to remove this. Straight CLR with a green scrub pad finally took it off. Has anyone else ran into this issue?

Pic is hard to see, but right is how my brass usually looks and left is dull. It’s like a high gloss vs eggshell paint.
I had the same problem at pretty close to the same amount of time. I took pictures of my black sticky brass and tried to get rid of the stickiness on the inside liner, but not joy. So I called Frankford Arsenal and explained the problem, how I used the tumbler (like using Lemi Shine and Dawn) and sent pictures of how my brass came out. They sent me a new drum and I haven't had a problem since.

Am not sure how the inside liner deteriorated, but I kind felt it had to do with I was storing it in my garage where daytime temperatures were very hot. So, I don't do that any more, though I still don't really know what the cause was.
 

z77280

Sergeant of the Hide
Full Member
Minuteman
Nov 14, 2018
256
43
Montgomery, TX
I had the same problem at pretty close to the same amount of time. I took pictures of my black sticky brass and tried to get rid of the stickiness on the inside liner, but not joy. So I called Frankford Arsenal and explained the problem, how I used the tumbler (like using Lemi Shine and Dawn) and sent pictures of how my brass came out. They sent me a new drum and I haven't had a problem since.

Am not sure how the inside liner deteriorated, but I kind felt it had to do with I was storing it in my garage where daytime temperatures were very hot. So, I don't do that any more, though I still don't really know what the cause was.
That is interesting. I scrubbed mine and the rubber liner does not seem to be deteriorating and is still bonded to the plastic.
 

Maxduty

Quae Moriatur
Full Member
Minuteman
  • Mar 8, 2014
    1,521
    3,365
    Oklahoma
    I'd bet it's the lemishine. Acetic acid may have attacked the drum liner
     

    straightshooter1

    Private
    Full Member
    Minuteman
    Dec 5, 2017
    1,669
    957
    AZ
    I'd bet it's the lemishine. Acetic acid may have attacked the drum liner
    I asked them (Frankford Arsenal) about that when I talked to them on the phone as I suspected that too and they said that shouldn't be the cause. I still use it in the new drum and no issues . . . so far after 3 yrs.
     

    Maxduty

    Quae Moriatur
    Full Member
    Minuteman
  • Mar 8, 2014
    1,521
    3,365
    Oklahoma
    Ive always rinsed mine out. I would have guessed that letting it sit over night would have different consequences, but I don't know for sure.

    Of course you know acetic acid leeches the zinc out of your brass too. I'd watch that brass for early failure.