Annealing 101- lesson learned!


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JDGray
May 22, 2010, 05:17 PM
I annealed some .308 brass today, lubed as usual, sized, seized the decapper in the neck!!! This was my first attempt of annealing, and I usually just run my finger over the mouth of the case to lube the inside. Not after the first case debockle:eek:, I ran a q-tip with my sizing wax on the entire inside of the neck, not just a smidge over the mouth, after tearing the neck of the first case:D I'll load these up, and see if my bullets seat easier.

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Vern Humphrey
May 22, 2010, 05:42 PM
Annealing is done to improve case life -- to soften the brass which becomes hard and brittle due to resizing. Accuracy shouldn't be affected by annealing.

Walkalong
May 22, 2010, 06:18 PM
When you anneal you burn out any lube/powder residue out the neck and make it seriously sticky. You must, as you found out, lube the inside of the necks.

As Vern posted, it should not affect accuracy.

I am shooting some .222 Mag brass I annealed some time back, but haven't shot in a while.

You can clearly see left over marks on the three old cases, but the ones on the left and right have been tumbled since then. The Hornady SP # 2265 on the left shot as it always had, quite well, but the unknown (supposedly Hornady) bullet on the right shot poorly using the same load. 90 degrees in the shade today. :eek:

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=121616&d=1274566518

JDGray
May 22, 2010, 08:40 PM
Yeah, I meant to say I hope the bullets seat easier:o Seems like while seating the last few times, the bullets would seat fine untill the last few thousands or so, then they would stop short. You could feel it in the press handle, that there was some left to go, but the handle would just spring back. I had to drop my seating plug a bit to get them home. Maybe it just time to scrap that lot of brass, if the anneling don't help.

Walkalong
May 22, 2010, 09:58 PM
Annealing should help.

JDGray
May 22, 2010, 10:05 PM
Just loaded up 20, and it definately helped! Nice-n-smooth:D Didn't know long to spin them over my map gas torch, but some of the discoloration came off in the tumbler on some, but most of them you can still see it.

Walkalong
May 22, 2010, 10:11 PM
I set the cases in water slightly less than halfway up the case, heated them up until they just started to turn red, and then pushed them over. Some folks twirl them in their fingers until they feel the heat, and then dump them. Any way we do it, we must protect the bottom half of the case from the heat. If we anneal it, it will not hold under pressure.

The annealers with the rotating plate and dual torches (http://www.6mmbr.com/annealing.html) are the bomb, but costly.

JDGray
May 22, 2010, 10:36 PM
Mine barely got a blue tint, let alone red. The result was good, but prolly didn't get em hot enough.

Sunray
May 22, 2010, 10:51 PM
"...let alone red..." Red hot is too hot. Heat the neck and shoulder until the brass changes colour and tip. A regular propane cylinder will do.
Annealing has nothing to do with seating the bullets though. It just takes out the work hardening. Did you chamfer and deburr after trimming?

ArchAngelCD
May 23, 2010, 02:13 AM
Be careful when using MAP gas because it burns much hotter than Propane. You can easily get the brass too hot and ruin the whole batch.

JDGray
May 23, 2010, 07:04 AM
Did you chamfer and deburr after trimming? Yes I do, and I trim after each firing, so I got a lot of experiance with that little Lee tool:)
Be careful when using MAP gas because it burns much hotter than Propane. You can easily get the brass too hot and ruin the whole batch.
I did the cases one at a time, head down in a 13mm deepwell socket, so just the neck was visible. The socket would start getting hot after 6 or so, and I would cool it in water. Next time I'll toss the brass in the water, sounds like the prefered method. I only annealed 40 cases, I'll go shoot this first 20, and see how it goes before loading the others. I probably didn't get them hot enough, to do any good, but the bullets did seat smoother, this go around.

jmorris
May 23, 2010, 10:18 AM
Seems like while seating the last few times, the bullets would seat fine untill the last few thousands or so, then they would stop short. You could feel it in the press handle, that there was some left to go, but the handle would just spring back. I had to drop my seating plug a bit to get them home.

Your not running a compressed load are you?

If you make any part of the case “glow” or any shade of red you have gone too far. I assume this is where the “stick it in water” step comes into play. At least if you have it in water and over anneal the mouth you don’t make it dangerous by annealing the head.

Take a minute and give this link a read http://www.6mmbr.com/annealing.html

JDGray
May 23, 2010, 11:57 AM
Your not running a compressed load are you? No, 43gr Varget in Fed brass, 168gr SMKs, 2.805" plenty of room in there still.

sgte5
May 23, 2010, 12:13 PM
That's the perfect load for 308's in my rifles.

JDGray
June 4, 2010, 05:31 AM
Maybe I just had a good day shooting, or the annealing help out:) My 300yrd groups shrank almost in half! Only fired a 5 shot group with the 168gr load, but it shrank from 3.5" down to 1.9", but to be fair my unanneald cases shot better too. My 155gr SMK load seemed to shoot tighter at 1.380" Vs. 1.6". The main thing is I didn't blow up any cases;) The mosquitoes were trying their best to carry me away, after a very wet week, so more testing to come!

Roccobro
June 7, 2010, 02:18 PM
Congrats JD!

Justin

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