Richard Craver

Thoughts, Musings And The Occasional Rant

It Finally Happened

Written By: richardwcraver - Apr• 19•20

Up until this week of the Wuhan saga, I’ve managed to keep working. We all got a nervous feeling last Monday when a co-worker in the next department called out with 102°F fever.

Thursday morning there were rumors and after lunch we got the word he had tested positive, though apparently doing well. We were informed that the building was being shutdown for a 3 day weekend for a hazmat team to come in and clean. Everything electronic or that could rust was covered in plastic we had a briefing in the parking lot and left.

The next day I got word that a co-worker in my department, directly across from me had tested positive, I may want to get tested and I may be getting a call from HR.

I’ve been totally non-symptomatic, but went to the local hospital drive-thru testing center. I explained that I had no symptoms, but had been advised to come for testing due to close proximity to a person tested positive. After a few minutes of protocol theatre I had my temperature checked and sent on my way with a return to work letter without being tested. I texted my supervisor, but about an hour later I got a robocall from HR that I had been exposed and was ordered off for 7 days.

So what does a guy that likes being productive and doing precision work do? I reload ammunition. Load it cheap and stack it deep is my motto.

Reloading is a bit like cooking in my opinion. The fun part of cooking is setting the ingredients out, the sound of the meat searing on a hot pan or grill, the smell of garlic roasting in the oven or onions sauteing in butter. The fluffiness of rice cooked just so right. The delicious smell of bacon wrapped around a fillet oozzing it’s fragrant salty goodness giving a warmth to the room. Utensils clattering, sighs of satisfaction and good conversation. Then it’s time to do dishes…

By contrast the enjoyable part of reloading is reading the recipe, measuring ingredients, putting them together into delightful single serving size parcels of Murica and consuming them one delicious recoil morsel at a time. There is the smell of the powder when loading as well as when consuming. Some smell sweet like bacon and some make the eyes water like roasting garlic. But like the bacon wrapped filet, if you get it right you’ll receive oohs and aahs from those gathered around and a sense of satisfaction.

But then you have to do the dishes.

1 of 3 containers of dirty range brass.

That’s what it’s like for me doing brass prep, doing the dishes. The last few days have been dish days. I had 2 large Folgers coffee containers full of 9mm and some .223 as well as another container 1/2 full of 9mm and .380. Last year I got well ahead on .223, but did a handful of club matches and took my daughter to shoot, so I’m building my stock of 9mm back up.

Like dishwashing, sometimes you have to get the big dirt off first. I try to pick up the number I shot, plus about 25% to allow for bad cases and to slowly build my inventory of brass without breaking my back and knees crawling around picking up cases. As a result some are full of sand and pea gravel which will ruin my dies.

It never ceases to amaze me how well old tarnished brass will clean up.
I pick up pretty ones and ugly ones.
But not the steel ones.

The first wash is a tumble with hot water and Dawn dish detergent to liquify mud and start removing lead residue, rinsed and dried before moving on.

Depriming and full length resizing comes next, rifle cases get a few more steps, then back in the tumbler with stainless steel pin media, LemiShine and Dawn (LSD) to deep clean the insides and primer pockets.

About 1,000 cleaned ready to load 9mm cases. About 300 .233 Remington cases ready to anneal, deprime, full length resize, trim and final clean.

I have processed 9mm and .380 pistol brass over the last 2 days. I’ll take Sunday off and Lord willing, I’ll start on the rifle brass this week.

Once the dirty dishes are cleaned, I will be ready to enjoy cooking for months to come.

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One Comment

  1. Sorie40 says:

    I like the comparison to cooking. Thumbs down for having to be out of work.

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