Cleaning a *really* nasty reload: need advice

I'm getting into higher powered stuff and borrowed a set 38mm AT cases from
a friend. Unfortunately, he failed to mention that he hadn't cleaned them
from the last time he flew over a year ago. I took the closures off and
discovered a fired reload still in it. As you can imagine, it's not a pretty
sight: the paper liner has pretty much become one with the case. I've
chipped away as much as I can but it appears I'm going to have to soak it in
something to get it back in usable shape.
I know the topic of cleaning cases comes up periodically but the impression
I've gotten is that the previous discussions have dealt with cases that were
not as grungy as this one, which is why I bring it up again.
Any advice on the best cleaner to soak it in to cut through the crud?
Reply to
Scott Oliver
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Use white vineger
Les Kramer
Reply to
Les Kramer
As Les said use white vinegar, totally submerge it for about two hours, drain, clean what you can and repeat. I know this sounds like shampoo directions but it works. when you want to between and definitely after soak in clear water to get all the vinegar off of it. Use a medium to stiff tooth brush to clean the threads, I use an M-16 cleaning brush it has two ends and works great. I also carry this along with a lot of paper towels to the range and an eighteen inch length of 1/2" dowel to shove them through the casing for a tight fit, it cleans it out better. Good luck and let us know how it went.
- Dale Martin NAR 80678 L2 N0JFM
Reply to
Dale Martin
Scott There is a gun solvent called "Hoppe's #9" that is the best thing to clean motors with. It is designed to remove any type of fouling from gun barrels and it works great for motors. Because it works so great, I often don't clean my motors for days after fireing. Simply soak the parts for a half hour or so and wipe off. If residue remains, soak again for another half hour and wipe. I would caution against using anything more abrasive than a tooth brush on the parts. Using Hoppe' shouldn't have too, anyway. I know a lot of guys use vineger but I found it to not to work that well. When using it, you normally still need to use some abrasive to remove the hard stuff. Besides, it's a mild acid and attacks bare alunimum(sp?:-). Hope this helps.
Lloyd Wood BRS Secretary Level lll
Reply to
The drawback to Hoppes is the cost. A jar large enough to soak say a 38/480 casing will set you back more than the reload. Yes, you can re-use it, but it's still an expensive bottle. Any one know what's actually in the stuff? My guess is 90% or more kerosene. Which is also very cheap at the store or at the pump.
Vinegar is far cheaper than Hoppes or anything else. You can buy a gallon jug at the supermarket for a couple bucks. And even though our casings are anodized, Lloyd is correct that it *IS* an acid, so don't leave it soaking for a long time. And vinegar doesn't clean some of the lubes. Like the red high temp bearing grease I've been using. But it does work with Vasoline.
I've also used a pickle jar full of Gumout carb cleaner. Soak the casing in that overnight, and scrub it out with a toothbrush. It does seem to get rid of my red lube. BTW, a brass toothbrush is great on the threads and doesn't seem to scratch the anodizing.
Bob Kaplow NAR # 18L TRA # "Impeach the TRA BoD" >>> To reply, remove the TRABoD!
Reply to
Bob Kaplow
I will have to agree with you on 'Lincoln's motor cleaning service', he was at Fire on the Farm last year and did a great job on all my casings and you cannot beat his prices. Great Kid, it was nice to see him again at LDRS with the UBetchya's.
Scott Pearson TRA #9225 T.H.O.R.
Reply to
I've seen it. Not with the black AT cases, but with the colors, which seem less durable. Not sure if it is the anodizing that is coming off or just the dye.
Mike F.
Reply to
That happened to me with a Doc Roc 29/180 case. It's now a light red/pink color. Serves me right for forgetting about the case in the bowl :(
Ted Novak TRA#5512
Reply to
I don't know how well they would work on a "nasty" reload case but, if you clean it shortly after use, Baby Wipes work really well without the strong smells and drips of solvents.
Reply to
Darrell Smith
Grab a couple of "moist towellettes" at the gas station every time you go. Well, that's if you launch the puny 38mm and below stuff I do. Now that I think of it, one would need a BIG box of "moist towellettes" to clean the casings of a five cluster N rocket!
Reply to
Just the dye...the anodizing is a harder layer of aluminum oxide at the surface of the casings which is then dyed using aniline dyes that then leach out in a weak acid (vinegar).
Reply to
Soaked the case in warm vinegar for about 2 hours as suggested. It cut through the crud holding the old liner in and I was able to get everything out. Now it's just a normal dirty reload which I can take care of easily.
Thanks to all for their advice.
Reply to
Scott Oliver

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