Since I started reloading my case preparation process has hardly changed. I would use Lee primer pocket cleaner to remove any debris after spent primer had been removed and then I would use wire wool to clean any dirt from the neck of the brass in order to inspect cases before reloading. That was all except for usual trimming to length and chamfering case mouth. To be honest that part of reloading is not my favourite so as soon as I spotted Lidl sell their ultrasonic cleaner again I forked £20 and got one to try.
Lidl Ultrasonic Cleaner
Not a bad piece of kit for £20. I told my wife it is perfect for cleaning her jewellery (Anna, I will do it at some point, I promise… ) and of course it can be used for cleaning different sort of things: such as cases 😉
Inside the box is the ultrasonic cleaner itself with 3 different plastic parts for cleaning jewellery, watches, etc. It is not really required and I do not use any of them. There are only three buttons to start, stop and set the cleaner. You have a choice of 5 different cycle times, but I used the longest 600 seconds. All you have to do is to remove spent primers from your cases and toss them in to the tank. I never throw in too many, but I guess 20 .308 Win cases is enough for one go.
Ultrasonic Cleaner Recipe
I searched Internet for a good recipe, but they are all divided between two different options: either nice and shiny option, but more time consuming and more expensive, or cheap and clean option with things you already have in your kitchen anyway. I opted for cheap and clean option and brass comes out nice and clean inside and outside and primer pockets are spotless.
All you need is 1:1 solution of vinegar and water. I used vinegar from ASDA which is below 20p per bottle as I remember correctly. You will also need a few drops of any washing up liquid. Throw your brass in and cover it with vinegar and water solution, you can toss the brass around to remove any bubbles from inside the cases. I usually use only one 10 minutes cycle, but you can run it for longer for really dirty brass. When you are happy with the result, just rinse cases in fresh water and let them dry.
Please have a look at the pictures, necks are nice and clean and ready for inspection. Primer pockets and nice and clean, as well as case mouth. You can see they are also nice and clean inside whereas there is quite a lot burnt powder residue inside cases that have not been cleaned in ultrasonic cleaner. I am quite happy with the results and will not go back to cleaning cases manually. And all that for £20.