Case preparation for rifle?

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by dsv424, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. dsv424

    dsv424 New Member

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    I saw a post about this but not sure which forum it was in a few months back. So sorry if I'm re-hashing old news. I would like to know the best process for reloading .223 and .308. What I mean is in what order do I tumble, de-prime, trim, resize, or should I tumble after depriming stuff like that. The press I'm using is the Lee Classic Turret if that has anything to do with the stages of case preparation at all. Could some of you "seasoned" reloaders chime in on what has worked best for you, that would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. olmossbak

    olmossbak New Member

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    DSV,

    I would be glad to assist you but you would be better served by reading the intro chapters in almost any loading manual (Hornady, Speer, etc.).

    On one point, I don't always clean pistol brass but I do look at each and every one for splits, cracks, etc. By using carbide dies you can avoid the necessity of lubeing the cases. Rifle brass is a very different story in that I clean it before and after sizing. The after sizing cleaning is done to remove the lube. I also clean primer pockets before tumbling and check them after tumbling to make sure on cleaning media is stuck in the hole.

    Good Luck
     

  3. Telcotech

    Telcotech Member

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    I agree w/ OLMOSSBAK-
    Get a reloading manual that covers rifle/pistol (most do) and simply follow their instructions....but, most do not address tumbling or case finishing. But here's how I do it, condensed version:
    First off I usually hand load in lots of 25 or 50 rounds, and right off the bat I inspect cases for any issues. then I decapp (remove primer); clean primer pocket; I have a case mouth brass brush so I also clean the necks/case inside; now I tumble w/ cob media; clean/inspect cases again after tumbling(remove all media); lube cases and resize; clean cases of lube; check case length w/ dial caliper; if once fired factory brass you may not have to check case length, but I do deburr the once fire cases; trim cases to length if needed; prime cases; select bullet/powder that you are goin' to use and find the load in the reloading manual;charge cases w/ powder and seat and possibly crimp bullet's, depending on what your loading for and what caliber, but w/ rifle loads (.223; 22-250) I generally crimp my bullets.
    This procedure works for me.......some, I'm sure....have their own procedure.;)
     
  4. dsv424

    dsv424 New Member

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    Thx Telcotech, thats what I was looking for was your personal way of doing the preparation. I should have explained in my first post that I already have 4 major reloading books thus I have 4 different ways to prepare the cases. What I was looking for is reloaders that have been doing it for many years and their tried and tested procedures. However, your procedure did bring another question to mind. Do you neccessarily have to re-size before trimming. Does the re-size die tend to stretch the case because I would prefer to do the triming before so that everything has been done before I bring the cases to the press. Thx for the input.
     
  5. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

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    The resizing die does tend to stretch the case, so you need to do the trimming AFTER you resize/deprime the case.

    Now I have a question on something that has been troubling me. This only seems to happen on the 5.7X28 brass. If I deprime and size the case first and then tumble, the brass comes out of the tumbler with a brown "residue" on the case, it is like a mixture of the lube and tumbler media that sticks to the case. Has anyone else had this problem and if so how do you get rid of it? I have tried to leave it in the tumbler longer, but that doesn't seem to make a difference.
     
  6. olmossbak

    olmossbak New Member

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    Havn't had any residue problems. Do you add a polish to your tumbling media? I have started using the midway stuff and the cases seem to come out cleaner and stay brighter longer.

    DSV: We could recommend neck sizing of rifle brass to reduce case streaching but that adds another variable for a beginner and limits the use of the reloads to one rifle. I have yet to wear out a case by reloading and some of my pistol cases have been reloaded at least a half-dozen times. Start with the basics and keep it simple until you feel confortable with what you are doing. Never exceed the listed loads, regardless of what your buddy says his other buddy does:eek: and all will be well.

    Good luck
     
  7. howlnmad

    howlnmad Well-Known Member

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    When sizing bottle neck brass the sizing die will bump the shoulder back in turn shortening the case. If you trim first and then size you're gonna come up with shorter and differing lenghts:(
     
  8. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

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    I really don't add anything to the media, it is the Lyman Green looking corn cob media. The only thing that I do add is Lyman media rejuvinator but that is not a regular thing, just when it takes a long time to clean my brass.

    Another thing on this 5.7 brass, it never comes out really shiney like any other brass but always a very dull finish like the brass is really inferior stuff.:confused::(
     
  9. olmossbak

    olmossbak New Member

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    The Midway stuff kinda looks like brasso. You add a teaspoonful to the media and let it run a minute then add the brass. It isn't necessary to do it every time. I have been using the same media for a really long time.
     
  10. wolfgang

    wolfgang New Member

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    howdy , this is how I do it and my 30-06 reloads will out shoot the federal match , brass comes home getts trumbled and clean, sized to national match specs using Wilson gauge and tumble again to remove sizing lube .
    trim brass [ only 5 times, center punch base each time to keep count]
    prime, drop powder , re check powder charge [ weigh it ], pick a great bullet and use the press to insert , hope this helps, wolf:rolleyes:

    ps , sort brass by manufacture if using military by date on base
     
  11. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    Here are a few comments for RIFLE cases:

    Full length sizing changes the length of the brass and you MUST trim after full length sizing, not before. The case gets expanded to tightly fit the chamber during firing, then it springs back to release from the chamber but it is still much larger than the sizing die. That sizing die makes the case smaller in diameter and pushes the case so as to be longer.

    I don't trim every reloading cycle but only when the lot of brass, after sizing a couple of random examples, shows that the cases are longer than the max case length listed in the reloading manual. The trim to length is usually about 0.010 inches shorter than the max case length. I trim right up to that minimum and no more.

    There is no need to tumble twice. The first time is to remove residue from shooting the brass. If you use the old tried and true RCBS lubing pad and their lube, it wipes off with a damp rag. Tumbling the second time to remove the lube only contaminates the vibratory media, especially if it is corn cob media.

    I tumble, size, trim, clean the primer pockets and brush out the throat of the case (using the RCBS motorized case prep station), prime, add powder and seat the bullet. After the lot is completed I then wipe each round with a damp rag and roll each case on a dry rag. I inspect each case for high primers or upside down primers or any other quality issues. The RCBS lube is water soluble and that allows it to remove easily. The pad, unlike the spray lubes, only puts the lube where it is needed, on the case walls.

    If you use an additive in the case vibratory cleaner, put it in first, run the cleaner for a minute or two then add the brass. If you don't get the polish additive distributed in the media it will clump the media and the clumps MAY end up inside the cases (don't ask how I know this!).

    I use the walnut shell media which seems to last forever, where as the corn cob media get contaminated early on and has to be replaced regularly. The walnut shell media does not shine the brass, but cleans it much better than the corn cob media. Shiny dirty looking brass (corn cob media cleaned) is not as good as duller clean brass (walnut shell cleaned), in my opinion.

    LDBennett
     
  12. nadroj

    nadroj New Member

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    I am just starting to reload rifle ammo. I have learned a lot just reading the posts on this forum. Just to be clear, when trimming, if the book says "trim to" 2.005 and the max cart length is 2.015, is it ok to be "within" those specs or do you always trim to the minimum measurment? After shooting the ammo do you check the cartridge to be within or always back down to the minumum.
     
  13. olmossbak

    olmossbak New Member

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    Try to keep all cases in a batch of cases the same length, especially if you crimp. Don't trim unless you have cases that exceed the max length and then trim the whole batch to the "trim to" length. Don't forget to deburr and chamfer after trimming. Check the length after resizing as it is this process that streaches the case.