Case mouth and dents question

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by flannelman, May 3, 2009.

  1. I was resizing some brass today and I noticed a few cases that had flat spots in the mouth and some dents along the body of the case. These were in the case before resizing. I lubed these cases well and then ran them through the resizing die (Lee full length resizer). They seemed no harder to resize than any of the others. The question is would you use them? After resizing the case mouths look good. The one with the dent still has a small dent but I can barely feel it. One other thing I noticed was a line near the head of the case. I think this is where the case fits in the shell holder (it looks about the right position for that). On some of the cases I can feel a noticable transition at this line. On others I can't really feel anything here. Is this normal?
    I'm using a Lee Breech Lock press with a Lee full length sizing die. .30-06 brass both Winchester and Remington.
  2. RFL

    RFL New Member

    Apr 9, 2009
    Columbia, Missouri
    Is your firearm a semi-automatic? If so , i'ts not unusual to have dented brass from the ejection process. Most of the time you can get these dents out, just remember that the more you work the brass the shorter it's life span. If the remaining dent you are feeling is right on the mouth of the case, is there a small split as well? Discard the case if you find a crack. Small dents in the case body will come out when you fire it again but if they look like something has punctured the case or caused a sharp indention, I would question what has caused that to happen. As far as the line around the head of the case, get a magnifying glass and take a close look. Most manuals will show you what the measurement should read at that point in the case or run something sharp and curved inside the case, dragging it along the inside of the case wall and see if you can feel a crack. If there are any doubts, get rid of the brass, it's not worth the chance to have a ruptured case go off in your gun. Check the rest of your brass for signs of pressure. A very bright ring around the head might be signs of trouble. You can see where your die runs on the brass but it shouldn't be a shiny ring around this area. If this isn't a semi gun then look close at those loads and make sure your not getting excessive pressure. I wasn't going to reply to this post because I thought you would have had a hundred other posts about this issue but since you didn't, I put in my two cents. I'm no expert on head seperation by any means but I do know signs of pressure when I load and just be very careful when it comes to head problems.

  3. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2007
    Athens, Georgia
    The line you see might be where the place in which the brass has stopped going into the resizing die. Hard to explain but the area above the line is resized and the area below the line could not get into the die because it just cant physically go any further in. I hope this makes sense!

    I am not saying that this the cause but I really don't know what you mean when you say a line. But if it is what I described, then it is pretty normal.
  4. Thanks for the replies. I'm shooting a bolt gun. I tried a few of the cases with flat spots and they came out good with no cracks. I'm pretty sure the line I'm referring to is where the case can't fully enter the die like you said Mr. Moody. I'll try running something in those cases to see if I can feel anything. This is once fired brass so I really shouldn't have an issue with high pressures should I? I'll post a pic of what I'm talking about later.
  5. My "rule of thumb" on impact damage to cases is if it is a dent that does not have a crease in it then it can be sized and reused. Deep sratches or sharp folds or pits no matter how small create a weak spot and they go to the scrap bucket. A nice little trick that I use is to take a drift punch, push it into the case neck and give it a couple of turns to round out the necks before sizing. This tool comes in handy too when you have bullets to seat that run a bit too tight when you try to start them as you can put a slight bell in the case just as pistol dies do automatically. When in doubt remember this,,, Brass is cheap,,, Guns and reconstructive surgery are exspensive !
  6. Thanks for the advise 10 spot. I have decided to do pretty much what you said. I have some cases that have a small gouge where the dent is so they are going in the scrap bucket. I used to build aircraft parts so I know what a small scratch can do to weaken a metal part. The cases with flat spots seemed to resize ok so as long as I see no cracks then I'll use them.
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