Removing epoxy from inside cartridge case


I have an inert .244 Magnum round, and when I pulled yesterday, I discovered was half full with epoxy. Is there any way to soften, dissolve or otherwise remove this extremely hard substance? I pulled it as I thought it was a live round, as the epoxy gave it a too much weight for an empty case.


Falcon, you might try soaking it in ACETONE but, watch the fumes. It is best done outdoors in a covered container(very quick evaporation!) M.Rea


I don’t think you can get acetone in the UK. If you can, I don’t know where.


Nail polish remover is acetone.

Kind regards,


Cheers, I will have to raid the bathroom cabinet. Will acetone definitely soften dried epoxy?



Acetone will soften, even dissolve, many, although by no means all, organic materials - it is the mildest of the so-called “aromatic” solvents. It will turn stranded cordite into a brown goo (which quickly solidifies into an intransient (sp) mass as the acetone evaporates - it cannot be used to “flush” stranded cordite out of holes drilled in the side of a .505 Gibbs, for example - we will not discuss why I’m so sure of this!).

Be careful in using it, as noted above. You may need to apply, scrape and repeat. This solvent will fog, even distort depending on circumstances, plastics and may affect clothing dyes, etc. Not terribly dangerous except for flammability, but you don’t want to be breathing the fumes nor spilling it.

One particular note applicable to ammo collecting is that it WILL dissolve lacquers used for load identification, so you will want to take at least rudimentary pains to protect the base if there is primer sealant you wish to preserve.



Thanks, I will try it. There is no primer sealant or any other markings on this round that it would affect. Would it be best to leave it in the case overnight or something?


The more that you can mechanicly remove before resorting to the acetone, the better.

Say a 5.5mm drill bit, being careful to not drill into the base, to remove the bulk of the epoxy first (who knows, after drilling the epoxy, the weight might be where you want it to be)


I have no way of knowing the round’s proper weight when live, I just want rid of the epoxy as it serves no purpose. I thought of putting it in a lathe and drilling some of it out.


Falcon–Acetone, at least here in the U.S., is available by the quart at stores that sell paint for refinishing cars. Much less expensive than buying the little bottles of nail polish remover.


I will try to get hold of some acetone somehow.


Falcon -

I buy the acetone at the larger hardware / paint / building products stores. Look in the section where they keep the various paint thinning agents.



How about gently heating the round and then knocking it mouth down at some construction wood? If metal expands enough, the whole epoxy piece may just fall out.


It is NEVER a good idea to heat any case in which the primer could still possibly be live. In Falcon’s .244 Magnum there is no way know if the primer had been inerted before the epoxy was poured in. I would bet there is a good chance it has not been inerted. Furture, since the .244 Magnum is a bottle-necked case, the heating would not work anyway.

As for the acetone dissolving the epoxy, it may work, but it would not surprise me if it did nothing. Most epoxies, once cured, are impervious to almost any solvent.