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3/20/2017 5:03:23 PM
Posted: 5/21/2013 10:05:03 AM EDT
I started processing brass ( mixed .223, .308 and .45 ) that has been in the garage for a very long time and much of the .223 brass is pitted to a greater or lesser degree. My gut says to discard this brass, but wallet says "Hey, maybe we can salvage this stuff some how." Would you trust this brass enough to load it? If not, how would you dispose of it? I've got two five gallon Homer buckets to process, not sure how much of it is .223 and of that not sure how much will be pitted.

Brass in question after a short trip thru the tumbler with walnut media:


Link Posted: 5/21/2013 10:11:54 AM EDT
223 brass is too cheap for me to use anything that has any damage more significant than minor surface corrosion. For me if I can't tumble or at very worst sand it clean (with a quick spin in the drill with medium to fine grit) I won't use it.
Link Posted: 5/21/2013 10:14:50 AM EDT
I wet tumbled some similar brass.

Result: You can see the discoloration on the left one and the odd blotch on the middle one.








They did fire fine but I'm putting it thru a wet clean again to see how it really turned out lol.







.
Link Posted: 5/21/2013 10:19:15 AM EDT
I might use them for plinking loads. I had a bunch that was stained like that, I took some flitz to a couple and it came right off.
Link Posted: 5/21/2013 1:57:15 PM EDT
It depends on how deep it is. I had some ammo that was stored in Black Hills styrofoam boxes in a humid basement. The corrosion was worse than what you have but too much worse. I decided to pull the bullets and reload the powder and bullet in a fresh case.

The first few I tried to pull with a kinetic puller. I was shocked to see the whole shoulder broke off of the case instead of the bullet coming out. The brass had become brittle. I ended up just putting a little side pressure on the bullets to crack the necks, some broke right off neck and all. I then pulled them with my fingers.

Some bullet jackets were even corroded which caused them to increase in diameter which split some of the necks too.

I ended up making a miniature tumbler from a prescription bottle and tumbled the bullets in white play sand then in corn cobb in the big tumbler.

I know this has gotten long winded but I suggest you scrap that brass or at least the worst ones. I don't want to think about what may have happened if one of the ones I had was fired and the neck and shoulder stayed in the chamber. It's just not worth the risk or hassle.

If you are loading them for a bolt or single action then it's a little less risky.
Link Posted: 5/21/2013 4:16:37 PM EDT
Thanks for all the replies. The photos don't show it as much, but the pitting seems pretty deep to me.

These reloads are destined to feed ARs, so I think I'll just err on the side of caution and scrap them. I found another half-Homer bucket of LC once-fired that seems to be in much better condition, so I'm not as hard up for brass as I thought.

Any thoughts on what to do with the brass that's unsuitable? I hate the thought of throwing them away if there's something easy to be done.
Link Posted: 5/21/2013 4:23:50 PM EDT
As long as there are no hot primers, take them to the scrap yard. Brass is worth money.
Link Posted: 5/21/2013 4:24:37 PM EDT
I'm lucky because my local scrap yard buys it for the normal going rate of brass. With dead primers of course. It seems some will and some won't and there are others that will but at a reduced rate. So if you can sell it for scrap. If you can't in your area you still may be able to move it for price of shipping or ? to someone who wants to mess with it. That's the best advice I can offer maybe somebody else has a better idea.
Link Posted: 5/22/2013 3:29:33 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Erik_O:

Any thoughts on what to do with the brass that's unsuitable? I hate the thought of throwing them away if there's something easy to be done.

scrap them which is not throwing away. Scrapping them is taking them to a metal recycling place and getting $ for them. Probably can get $2 a lb for them
Link Posted: 5/22/2013 3:59:47 AM EDT
I wouldn't use any part of them. On the overall scheme of things, we're comparing the cost of reloaded ammunition against a possible rupture of the case, or any of several other problems. Accuracy might be affected, too -- so like I posted earlier this week, when I had a bunch of stuff for my Garand water damaged -- get rid of the bad rounds. Recycle them if possible, but I sure wouldn't fire them and expect good results.
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