1950's .45 ACP brass


June 12, 2012, 08:44 PM
Just sorting through some "once fired" brass I bought online.

About 10% of the lot is either 1953 or 1954 production TW headstamp brass.

While these are some of the nicest looking in the bunch, just wanted to make sure there was no collectibility associated with over half a century old brass before I ruin it.

Any advice would be appreciated!

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June 12, 2012, 08:57 PM
I know nothing of collecting brass, but if you want, sent it aside and shoot the rest.

June 12, 2012, 09:00 PM
Even if it were unfired and in an original box, I doubt that .45 ACP ammo from that era would command much of a premium (WW2 era might be a different story). As fired brass I'm fairly certain that its only value is going to be as reloading components. According to the NRA, 1953 TW brass was supposed to have been loaded with noncorrosive primers, so you shouldn't need to worry about washing corrosive salts from the cases, just load, shoot and repeat.

June 12, 2012, 09:38 PM
Thanks, as much as I would like to just shoot it, I can't bring myself to do it!

Knowing there is no real value will make me feel better about if I find one that I missed while loading a mag at the range.

June 12, 2012, 10:13 PM
Sounds like Twin City Arsenal. They made some that was steel, put a magnet to it and see. If it is, chunk it.

I have brass that goes back to 1943 but it gets shot with the rest of the stuff.

June 12, 2012, 11:13 PM
What do you know, the 1953's are steel! I would have never thought to check that, as they all look like brass to me.

Thanks Otto.

June 13, 2012, 12:24 AM
They are corrosive so if you shoot some make sure you clean with a :corrosive:'cleaner.

June 13, 2012, 07:41 AM
I would contact the person that sold it to you for a replacement.

June 13, 2012, 08:15 AM
They are corrosive so if you shoot some make sure you clean with a :corrosive:'cleaner.

This should not be the case, as it was the original primers that were corrosive. I can't imagine there being any residual corrosive salts on this brass as it has obviously been reloaded numerous times already.

June 13, 2012, 12:07 PM
cberge8 - My apologies, but gunner69 is correct, according to the CMP, some 1953 production Twin Cities .45 acp ammunition WAS corrosive.


The chances of the cases containing enough salts to harm your bore may be remote, but if the cases were mine, I'd deprime them and give them a good wash and rinse before I loaded them.
Looking down a formerly pristine bore and seeing something that resembles an old sewer pipe will cure you forever from taking corrosive ammo lightly.

June 13, 2012, 12:30 PM
BTW they size and load fine... I've had no issues with mine.

Sounds like you bought from the same guy I did. :)



June 13, 2012, 05:30 PM
Reload and shhot them! The internet myth of not being able to reload steel cases is bunk! The steel in the cases is softer than the carbide ring in your sizer die. Also think about the reloaders from years back that reloaded steel cases with NON carbide steel dies......

June 14, 2012, 08:56 AM
It isn't a matter of can't. I load steel .223. I used to get several loadings out of them in my bolt rifle. I still load them for shoot & scoot ammo. As far as steel dies I have wore down 2 mandreals but Lee refuses to let me buy replacements. I had argued more then 5 minutes before giveing up & telling them my address for them to send the free ones.

Even if you can load it if I bought brass I'd expect brass. I don't like paying for one thing & getting something else.

June 14, 2012, 09:38 AM
Gotta love a company that stands behind their product!

June 15, 2012, 04:59 PM
There is no collectors value for 1950s fired .45 ACP brass, although if you like to keep it "just in case" (which is what I do generally) then it might be worth something someday.

Steel .45 case are reloadable and not a problem. The WWII stuff loads just fine, the current Wolf stuff loads just fine (although when they deprime they tend to BANG! when the primer finally pops free) and I load them until I lose them and they are lost forever. To load steel RIFLE cases, then "WAY too much lube" is just about right! Yes, it can be done and works just fine, but I don't load steel rifle cases too many times.

For cleaning corrosive primers, such as the cheap surplus stuff, Hoppe's #9 does just fine and it saids right on the bottle "FOR CORROSIVE AMMO"! It is the PRIMER that is corrosive, NOT the powder, NOT the case, the primer! I don't know how many times I hear about the "powder" or the "case" being corrosive, they are NOT! The primer is the part with what is basicly salt that does the damage. If you are really worried about the case being "corrosive", then wash it with water and it will be fine.

For fun reading, read the LEGION FIVE REPORT BLOG!

June 16, 2012, 11:52 AM
"About 10% of the lot is either 1953 or 1954 production TW headstamp brass."

Those old cases have no collector value and should not be reloaded because of the danger of dry rot and brass termites. Send them to me for proper disposal.


June 16, 2012, 12:39 PM
Brass termites! OMG, could all of my brass have been infected? :D

June 16, 2012, 05:39 PM
I read in my 1st Edition ABC's of reloading that the author reloaded these steel case 45ACP's.

He said they were harder to size but they functioned fine once loaded.

I would lubricate them even if you were using a carbide die and I would leave the lube on and fired them lubricated.

Steel on steel has more friction than brass on steel, the lube will help break the friction between case and chamber and will improve function.

June 17, 2012, 01:39 PM
I've been reloading "brass" headstamped like that for 15 years and I never once thought to take a magnet to it.

I had NO IDEA that stuff was steel, after all this damn time!

Mine are steel. I must have about 2k of those buggers in my big 45 bin.

The things you learn on the interwebs....

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