Best Brass Tumblers – Buyer’s Guide & Reviews

Hi, gun enthusiasts!

Do you want to invest in the best brass tumblers?

When reading this article, it means that you want to use and reuse your old brass cases, right?

This idea is one of the most significant savings. But, it is only successful when you buy the best brass tumbler.

How to choose the best one among hundreds of different models on the market?

It must meet your demands for cleaning brass cases and have a reasonable price.

Now, let’s discover all products as well as related information:

Top 7 Best Brass Tumbler Reviews

1 Frankford Arsenal 855020 – Best for Budget

Although Frankford Arsenal 855020 is cheap, it is sufficient enough to meet the basic demands of users.

Within 3 hours, this model can help you clean 600 9-mm cases. However, it’s hard to hold and polish higher calibers.

The clear glass top keeps the items inside from falling out of the model. At the same time, you can see the cleaning process is going clearly.

You will turn on and off the tumbler with a switch on the power cord. This way helps you control better than plugging. Moreover, you save a lot of your time and effort on your end to plug in every use.

While working, this model will produce noise from the motor. Thus, make sure to use it in a quiet environment without disturbing other people.

However, if you are looking for a durable tumbler that can work for many years, this is not an ideal choice. It is because the bowl is made from cheap material – plastic.

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2 Frankford Arsenal 909544 – Best Rotary Tumbler

Unlike Frankford Arsenal 855020, this rotary tumbler cleans your cases with wet tumbling. Thus, you can clean many cartridges in a short time.

What’s more, thanks to the big container, this tumbler can work well with any cartridge size. Specifically, it’s fine to hold up to 7 liters and clean 1000 .223 cases at a time. The maximum load is at 30 pounds, so the whole unit doesn’t put too much pressure on the motor.

Instead of the dry tumblers, this model works with STM (Stainless Tumbling Media), so it won’t create a mess and produce dust.

The solution of detergent and water can not only turn old brass into a brand-new case, clean both the insides and the primer packets but also wipe the lube of the rifle cases.

Keep in mind to read the manual before using since there is essential detailed information. It includes what the STM is and how the model works.

In particular, don’t use strong detergents and cleaners because they may ruin and deform the rubber lining of the barrel.

This product doesn’t include additional accessories in the package, requiring you to spend any amount of money on buying separately.

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3 Frankford Arsenal 645880 – Best Tumbler Kit

Frankford Arsenal 645880 is one of the most popular tumblers because of a fully motorized piece of equipment.

You don’t have to send extra money for purchasing other accessories since the package comes with a full kit.

They include Quick-N-EZ Case Tumbler, a plastic bucket, 3 lb. cleaning media, 4 oz. brass polish, and quick-N-EZ Rotary Media Separator.

It has a significant amount of capacity, holding up to 600 9-mm brass cartridges or 350 .223 brass rounds.

The on-off switch on the cord allows you to turn on and off the model quickly and easily.

This vibrating tumbler causes your shells to rub against the cleaning media. Therefore, it can both clean and polish cartridges in one cycle with a small amount of media.

It is designed with a clear lid, which allows you to see everything inside clearly.

Frankford Arsenal 645880 also creates noise while running as well.

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4 Lyman Pro 1200 – The Most Silent Model

Why Lyman Pro 1200 is the most silent model on this list?

Its lid nut and feet are made from a rubber material, which can minimize the noise while operating.

The lid is a sifter, which allows you to separate the media from your brass straightforwardly. This smart design helps you save a small amount of money on buying an extra sifter.

Although there is spring, supporting the bowl when turning on, the media may jump out of the model. The tumbling process creates the vibrations and the lid isn’t fully-covered.

The package doesn’t include an on/off switch, so it’s a bit difficult to control and use this tumbler for beginners.

We strongly recommend this product for cleaning small calibers. Despite a high capacity, this tumbler can only hold up to 2-lb media and small 350 .223 cases in a cycle. Thus, the bigger your calibers are, the lower the capacity is.

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5 Lyman 7631550 – Best Capacity

Lyman 7631550 is the best brass tumbler in terms of capacity on this list because it can hold up to 1.000 .223 brass shells.

And the high-quality construction and functionality can put up with this vast number of cases. Specifically, this model is made from heavy-duty plastic material, which can handle wear and tear.

In particular, the manufacturer has added rubber lining to keep your cases from scratches. Moreover, this feature minimizes noise while running.

There is a built-in timer that allows you to set from 0-3 hours, and then it will shut off automatically. Therefore, it doesn’t require you to monitor continuously.

Here’s the kicker:

This tumbler features a dual sifter system, which has 2 pans: one for separating the cases from the pins, and another for separating the media pins from your cleaning solution at the same time. What’s convenient!

The lid leaks, so you should tighten by putting a light coating of Hornady case sizing wax on the rubber gasket.

Though this model also produces noise, it’s not insignificant.

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6 Extreme Tumblers Rebel 17 – Best Value for Money

Extreme Tumblers Rebel 17 is the most expensive model on this list. Of course, you will get what you pay for. It provides you with the best overall construction and functionality.

Here are what it can bring:

This heavy-duty plastic tumbler is durable enough to hold about 700 .223 brass shells. Furthermore, the powerful motor, moving at 3.000 RPM per minute helps you complete the cleaning process in a concise time.

Although this model works thanks to the powerful motor effectively, it won’t produce big noises thanks to the rubber liner inside.

Unlike other cheap products, Extreme Tumblers Rebel 17 has a beautiful and luxurious design. If you want to look for something to use as a piece of decor for your workspace, we strongly recommend this machine.

Unluckily, it’s a bit hard to tighten the knobs. You should tighten them with a cordless drill.

This unit can clean your brass thoroughly in a short time, but it also requires your more regular maintenance.

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7 Hornady 050202 – The Best Overall

In spite of small size, Hornady 050202 is excellent in most aspects. First, its small container doesn’t take much room in your workplace.

However, this compact design is strong enough to clean 400 .38 cases. And we make sure that the cyclonic action can clean each case thoroughly.

It’s effortless to use this model even when you are a first-time user. The product has attached to a sifter, which allows you to separate the media and your brass quickly.

This feature, combined with the fast cleaning process, is ideal for people who need to reload a lot of cases in a short time.

Due to a dry tumbler, it’s hard to avoid producing a little dust after each use. But, you can rest assured about this thing because its clear lid will keep everything inside until the process is done.

While working, this tumbler will create continued vibration, but it is in control thanks to this model’s heavy-duty components.

Moreover, you can adjust the different running times, depending on the conditions of your cases and the desired degree of cleanliness.

This model is so stable that it can withstand wear and tear over the years. Therefore, it is a worthy investment for anyone.

However, its minus point lies in the motor that gets hot quickly.

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Vibrating Tumbler Vs. Rotary Tumbler

Both vibrating tumbler and rotary tumbler can help you clean brass cases, and they have some small differences:

Rotary Tumbler

For a rotary tumbler, you will put your brass cases and media inside a barrel. After that, you load and put this barrel on the rotary tumbler then turn for cleaning.

For the best result, you should use the combination of corn cob and walnut shell media.

Vibrating Tumbler

The vibrating tumbler is designed with a big bowl that holds your casings and media. The machine will create quick vibrations, causing friction between your brass and media to clean them.


Best Media For Cleaning Brass

The media plays a vital role in determining the result of cleaning and polishing. Please take a look at the following options available on the market:

Corn Cob

Corn Cob is a mild media, working well for fired brasses. But you have to ensure that they aren’t very tarnished.

The treated corn cob media can both clean and polish your brass cases. Another great thing is that you can apply this media for both vibratory tumbler and rotary tumbler.

Walnut Shell Media

Walnut shell media is more effective than corn cob, and even it is famous for polishing brasses for a long time. If you tried to polish your brasses many times and see no further improvement, then the walnut shell media may be a practical solution.

To have the most shiny polished look, you should use treated walnut shell media. Although you can use this media for rotary and vibrating tumblers, it brings the best outcome when using vibrating tumbler.

Stainless Steel Pins

Stainless steel pins are also well-known and popular cleaning media available on the market. But, it’s possible to use with rotary tumbler only.

This media is so strong enough to clean the inside and the primer pockets thoroughly and quickly.

This media has some disadvantages such as high price, the requirement of drying your brasses after polishing.


Things to Consider Before Buying the Best Case Tumbler

It seems that all brass tumblers have the same function, so you can’t choose random because they are different. To make the right decision, you have to consider the following aspects:

Capacity

The different brass tumblers have different capacities. If you choose a unit with a huge capacity, the cleaning process will happen faster.

Usually, it ranges from 300 -1000 ammo shells at the same time for cleaning. Pay attention that the higher the capacity has, the higher the price is.

Compatibility

In general, the majority of tumblers can deal with any ammo shell, but it’s better to pick up a model designed for a specific type of shell.

To break down the matter, reading the specifications of the product will let you know which is the right brass tumbler for your calibers.

In case you need to clean many different types of calibers, you had better invest in a tumbler that can hold more brass cases of the biggest calibers.

Construction

Most people think that a more expensive  brass tumbler has better construction, but it isn’t always the case. The best construction must have full of gears, wheels, and belts.

Durability

There are 3 common materials of the brass tumblers: unbreakable steel, aluminum, and plastic. And the steel, aluminum tumblers are more durable and expensive than plastic models.

Don’t worry if you choose a plastic model. Following the manual from the manufacturer and giving your machine right maintenance can last the lifetime of the model.


FAQs

Apart from knowing how to choose the best brass tumblers, you also need to learn other vital information to get the best outcome. You can refer to the questions below:

How long do you need to tumble your brass?

If you want your shiny brass both inside and outside, you should tumble your cases around two hours.

Before turning on the machine, remember to wash them in the mixture of the simmering water and a few drops of dish detergent for a few minutes, after that rinse and dry.

Do you need to dry steel media after you are finished working?

Even you leave your brass cases wet, steel media won’t rust them. Thus, it’s fine to leave wet cases in the machine for the next use.

Dry tumbling or wet tumbling – Which one should you choose?

This thing depends on your budget and your demands. The wet tumbling works faster than another, but it is also more expensive.

How do you separate cases stuck together while tumbling?

You can separate cases stuck together by hand if you use a soft media. But, you must ensure that you won’t deform your cases while processing.

In case you don’t believe in your skills, it’s better to use specialized tools.

Can you use tap water for wet tumblers?

The short answer is yes. It’s possible to apply any kind of water without chemicals.

Conclusion

With our budget, Frankford Arsenal 855020 is an ideal choice because it’s cheap and effective.

Moreover, it works pretty fast with small calibers. We can see the process inside through the clear glass top.

Now, choosing the best brass tumblers is no longer a problem. Which above product works best for you?