But now have become paranoid about accuracy and am doing it every time... :uhoh:
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December 22, 2008, 09:18 AM
For my 30-30 cast loads I do it after every firing for accuracy. That way they all crimp in exactly the same spot. However I have loads of cases so I can just keep a couple of hundred ahead by doing them at my leisure. For the other rifles I'll anneal and trim after roughly 5 loads, or whenever I find one case that's too long.
December 22, 2008, 09:29 AM
Those cases that don't need a crimp I trim when ever they are out of spec. Those that need a crimp I trim every time I prep them. I trim each set to the shortest one in that set. Revolver cases are in sets of 50 and rifle are in sets of 20.
December 22, 2008, 10:17 AM
For bottle neck cases, i trim ever time,if needed, BUT to maximum length. I want as much neck length as i can get. In other words the trim length is always at maximum. Single shot bolt action 243 win. for bencn rest shooting. Other guns, trim to minimum and let grow to maximum. Less work. If crimping trim every time.
Peter M. Eick
December 22, 2008, 10:21 AM
Rifles? Every time
Pistols? As needed.
December 22, 2008, 10:33 AM
If you're going to trim rifle cases every time, trim just a hair under max. In my experience straight wall auto pistol cases shrink with repeated sizings. If constant trimming is a problem, get RCBSs X-dies.
December 22, 2008, 10:43 AM
If you're going to trim rifle cases every time, trim just a hair under max. I agree. You don't need them to be real short. You just want a clean straight edge on the case mouth for the crimp.
December 22, 2008, 10:53 AM
Trimming is the most loathesome part of handloading. Pistol cartridges don't need it. Rifle cartridges typically need it after the first firing, then after another 3 or 4 firings. RCBS X-Dies make it unnecessary after the first firing & trimming.
If you really want to do it after every firing, buy a Gracey or Giraud trimmer. They take awhile to set up, but then it is 3 seconds per case, and the Giraud chamfers inside and out too.
December 22, 2008, 11:41 AM
And costs an arm and a leg (Giraud Trimmer)...I'd rather use my ol' RCBS Case Trimmer 2 and my Forster chamfer/deburing tool and spend the extra money on components.
No matter what myself and others say about trimming cases or the great expectations of "X" dies. Those cases that require a crimp MUST be of the same length to insure that ALL cases receive the same and equal level of crimp...It just stands to reason and engineering knowledge.
I have crimped short cases and long cases with only one setting of the crimp die and unless you want to reset the crimp die for each case they will NOT have the same crimp.
If you don't want to trim your cases. Not a problem...Go for it. I, on the other hand, will continue to insure all cases, requiring a crimp, will be trimmed to the same length. Your call...
December 22, 2008, 11:44 AM
I'd say if you have to trim every firing, you have a rifle headspace or die adjustment problem.
BTW: 30-30 lever-guns fall into the excess headspace catagory because of the springy actions & thin brass.
December 22, 2008, 12:05 PM
rcmodel...I seem to have solved the headspace problem by moving the .30-30 shoulder forward .030"...Solved two problems...Primers backing out and not having to trim all that often...
December 22, 2008, 12:38 PM
Trimming is the most loathesome part of handloading.
+1. I do it regularly for LR loads, but for 600 yards and under ammo, only when absolutely necessary.
December 22, 2008, 02:48 PM
I have a crank Forster and it isn't enough of a pain yet to run out and spend the money on a power one.
However, if you are a Noobie and haven't bought one yet. Go buy the one that's powered. You're likely to be loading for 45 years and cranking can get real old after a while. :D
December 22, 2008, 03:11 PM
rcmodel...I seem to have solved the headspace problem by moving the .30-30 shoulder forward .030"...Solved two problemsSame here.
If you just crank the sizing die down and try to headspace off the rim, you will have problems with stretching though.
However, I received a windfall (free) of once-fired 30-30 brass a couple of years ago that should last me the rest of my life. Sized & trimmed it all and loaded all the bullets I had.
Still have a .50 cal ammo can half full of it that hasen't been loaded yet!
To me trimming is done just because it is trivial to do it. I have an RCBS trimmer with the 3 way cutter for all of my calibers. While I am seating a bullet, or gauging out a round, I am also weighting out every charge (auto dispensor in back) and trimming them.
It is no big deal to trim every one. Since it costs me practically nothing why not do it every time.
Trimming is not that big of a deal if you have the right tools for it.
December 22, 2008, 05:36 PM
I'm headspacing on the shoulder, rcmodel. With the case shoulder moved forward the case head is pushed against the bolt face.
December 22, 2008, 07:04 PM
+1 For bottle neck cases, i trim every time, if needed, BUT to maximum length. I want as much neck length as i can get.
With particular note to 'if needed'. Belted/Bottleneck or straightwall Magnum pistol. I'll select a batch of brass. Measure them all and deduce a mean length. Those that are long or longer than the mean get trimmed. Those that are shorter get tossed in short bin. 'Short' may be right near spec. Nothing wrong with them. I just use them in a different batch. The most consistent crimp can only be made on brass that is the same length within a batch.
I don't know that I've ever trimmed a 45acp or 9mm case. Ever.
December 22, 2008, 08:49 PM
Get a Sinclair chamber length gauge and you may find that you don't NEED to trim except to initially even up a batch of brass. Most factory chambers are very generous.
December 22, 2008, 10:49 PM
For 223 I trim after firing once in my chamber, then it's not very often after that. I sometimes wear out the brass before it needs to be trimmed again. When loading 6mm Rem and .270 I trim after first firing and then it's every couple of firings after that. With 9mm I haven't had to trim at all yet.
One other thing, I wish there was an easy way to trim the new Winchester AA 28ga hulls, I have several batches that are of different lengths, it makes it hell to get consistent crimps everytime!
December 22, 2008, 10:57 PM
And you wonder why some of us trim handgun brass (to get consistent crimp). And on ocassion I have been known to trim .45 ACP cases. My Colt 1911 Series 80 seems to prefer .890" cases (or it could just be me)...:D
December 22, 2008, 11:23 PM
I've never trimmed my pistol or 45-70 brass. But, I trim all of the bottleneck cases each and every time.
For my .223, I purchased a Possum Hollow Kwick Case Trimmer. I like it a lot. Took a bit of time to get the feel for it, but I can trim a case in under 5 seconds.
When I am loading a batch, I trim all of the cases to the same length. All of a specific load that I make are trimmed at the same length, that way in the future all of my bullets are the same, no matter when they were made. If I fire and reload any of the brass, I check to make sure it is still within specs and load again.
December 25, 2008, 08:16 PM
I floss my teeth every night, but I hate trimming brass!
The RCBS trimmer sucks, and the Forster and Wilson are better, but this still takes too much time and concentration.
I just found out I have no 338 pilot and had to make one on the lathe and mill. That was lots of extra time.
I am getting ready to spring for the drill press -Forster holder -RCBS 3way cutter, set up that may cost me a couple hundred bucks.
I could buy new brass cheaper than that, but this reloading is an obsession.
How often do I trim brass?
When it exceeds the max case length, which is too often.
December 25, 2008, 10:29 PM
I have thousands of .223 and .30-06 brass. I tumble my fired brass and pitch it in a coffee can. When the can is full I trim the whole can. My rifle brass gets trimmed every time I fire it. Pistol brass, never. I use the Lee trimmer system and my cordless drill.
December 26, 2008, 12:06 PM
i check every round, every time for length. i trim any that are AT the max length. i trim .005" each time. on pistol ammo, this works very well. on high pressure rifle ammo, i have to trim a lot more often. but then, i shoot it less. so it works out.
January 2, 2009, 11:46 AM
I mounted a Dillion [OEM Forster] case trimmer vertically on a board, and clamped the board to the bench.
I put a door knob on the knob.
I pounded out the bar on the collet, so I pull one end of the lever instead of twisting both ends.
A burr forms on the case mouth and get the cutter pilot stuck in the case.
I yank up on the door knob before I loosen the collet.
Neck dies get 20 shots per trim with hot loads.
Body dies get 2 or 3 shots per trim with hot loads.
I am going to FL size this batch of brass to get it to fit in the chamber, but after that, I am segregating it for neck sizing.