Should I have a Wet and a Dry tumbler?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by PepNYC, May 21, 2020.

  1. PepNYC

    PepNYC New Member

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    I bought a FA Quick n Easy case tumbler a few weeks back. Then after some discussions here on the forum I was convinced I wanted to wet tumble so off to Harbor Freight and I got the dual drum tumbler and some pins. I've been using the HF tumbler ever since. The FA dry tumbler is still sitting unopened in the original box with 17lbs of walnut media and a bottle of Nufinish. So I was curious if any of you all have both? If so why and how do yo use them. I'm not sure if I should sell the FA or hang on to it. Seems silly just sitting there all lonely and unused brand new in the box.
     
  2. ECNC

    ECNC Member

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    I use both. All rifle brass always gets wet tumbled. Pistol brass I don't care which I use. Not as worried about accuracy as much with pistol. I can put a heck of a lot of pistol brass in the dry tumbler that is why I dry tumble the pistol. If I just have a little bit of pistol I through it in the wet. I have been using my HF tumbler for years now and it has never failed me. Replace a belt now and then and that is it.
     
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  3. Zbizzle911

    Zbizzle911 Charter Freedom Lover Charter Member Supporting Member

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    I'm new to the wet tumbling. I have a lyman dry tumbler I was using. I'm not sure if i will keep it or not. I only load rifle right now so they'll all get wet tumbled and I don't see myself using the dry tumbler any.
     
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  4. Jerzsubbie

    Jerzsubbie Senior Member Charter Member Benefactor Supporting Member

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    Sell the dry tumbler while it’s still NIB.

    I started with the same FA dry tumbler and it works well. However I haven’t used my dry tumbler since I first used my FA wet tumbler.
     
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  5. zuerjoha

    zuerjoha I *really* like Glock 19s Supporting Member

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    I've used my HF tumbler for dry tumbling, so maybe you don't need a dedicated dry tumbler?
     
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  6. Tailhunter

    Tailhunter I am a Trapper Charter Member Supporting Member

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    I have both but really only use wet anymore.
     
  7. Namerifrats

    Namerifrats Member

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    Wet is the only way to go. Quicker, less mess, no lead dust exposure, and does a way better job.
     
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  8. Me.

    Me. Active Member

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    I’m old enough to remember that there was only one type of tumbler. And it tumbled.

    Vibratory “tumblers” came along and people got excited by the speed that they got the job done.


    But tumblers kept on tumbling. I used dry media in my tumbler for decades. Now I wet tumble. But I’ve only ever owned one tumbler.


    There’s my answer. There is no such thing as wet or dry tumblers. There is only a difference in the media you put in a tumbler.

    C1AD8389-B34A-479F-BDA9-E01390C3C3C8.jpeg 338AC2F1-163B-4513-8E5A-76FE5925BA70.jpeg





    zuerjoha said it more simply.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020
  9. Namerifrats

    Namerifrats Member

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    You ever try to fill a vibratory tumbler with water and run it? Lol
     
  10. Me.

    Me. Active Member

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    No, silly..... you don’t buy a vibratory tumbler, if you’re going to own only one.

    Plus, there is technically they aren’t vibratory “tumblers”, they are vibratory polishers.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2020
  11. PepNYC

    PepNYC New Member

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    So you've used dry media in a rotary (wet) tumbler? I'm gonna go out on a limb here and guess a vibratory tumbler won't be to happy if you fill it with water and steel pins.
     
  12. Me.

    Me. Active Member

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    Yes. We all used dry media in rotary tumblers back in the day. Because vibratory “tumblers” didn’t exist.

    They are tumblers. There is no “wet” or “dry” aspect to their design. Now that wet tumbling is in fashion, people are buying them for wet tumbling, but a tumbler just.... tumbles. You can put whatever you want in them.

    Before reloaders picked up on using them, they were generally used for polishing rocks.

    3BA71CBE-A196-4438-80A1-096D891290EB.jpeg


     
    Last edited: May 24, 2020
  13. Me.

    Me. Active Member

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    Also..... if you want to try dry tumbling without spending real money, go to Walmart, head to the pet aisle and buy some corncob for a few bucks.

    It will not do as fast a job as walnut media. It will also deteriorate and turn to dust sooner. But a 5 lb bag will last a long time. Certainly will last 100,000 rounds.

    I have had my tumbler for 30 years. In that time I’ve gone through two fills of walnut media, 5 lbs of corncob. Total. I have no idea how many rounds I’ve done. I only started wet tumbling in the last year. I actually got a kick out of my type of tumbler coming back into fashion, as I never caved in and bought a rotary polisher.

    Now I wet polish in just water, a dash of citric acid ($3 for a lifetime supply) and some car wash/wax. I don’t use pins. Pins are only useful for polishing the inside of the brass, and I just don’t care enough to need the inside of my cases to be shiny.


    When I corn-polished, I took my time with it. I didn’t much worry about how long it would take to tumble. I’d run it for a day or three. But, if you’re used to rock-tumbling, you think a couple of days of tumbling is a very short amount of time.
    https://rocktumbler.com/tips/how-long-does-rock-tumbling-take/


    Set the tumbler on a mat on the garage floor, or directly on the garage floor, to reduce noise throughout the house.

    Dry media certainly makes a mirror shine easier, but I’m only after functional, not beautiful.


    41244365-2E12-4E0D-B1D5-7FCB4CFC8095.jpeg
     
  14. BowWow

    BowWow Happy to be here

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    I sold my Lyman rotary and the Walnut media after using a wet tumbler for a bit. Wet tumbling is the way to go...…. like said above, less dust, less mess, does a better job in shorter time.
     
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