Making .300 BLK Brass


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Walkalong
March 29, 2013, 10:33 PM
Since .223 is hard to find and pricey right now, and fully prepped .300 BLK brass from .223 is even scarcer right now, I figure it was time to make some.

I have the brass, the little HF chop saw came in Friday, and I figured I would get started tonight.

I made a quickie stop for the brass. It is 1.360+ as cut, then 1.370+ when sized.

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Walkalong
March 29, 2013, 10:34 PM
That leaves just a little for the WFT to clean up. Not many yet, but it's a start.

Walkalong
March 29, 2013, 10:37 PM
And very important. Always keep your fingers away from the little spinning wheel. :o

Red agrees. Yep, he was trying out the cut off pieces to see if he could eat them. You know, like the rug he's standing on. Yep, he's why it has missing parts.

Walkalong
March 29, 2013, 10:43 PM
Shed's a wreck too.

bds
March 29, 2013, 11:51 PM
= Sigh =

Wish I had a .300 BLK upper for my AR ... :D

cfullgraf
March 29, 2013, 11:53 PM
And very important. Always keep your fingers away from the little spinning wheel. :o



Yep, that is putting yourself into your work.:)

When I formed my large batch of 300 BLK from 223 Remington last summer, I used a Wilson trimmer to do the trimming. Worked, but slow. I now have a 300 BLK WFT trimmer and it works quite well.

For large volume, mounting the WFT in the lathe is a good way to go but watch your fingers. (Sorry, too many years of working in industry and having safety drilled in).

If I remember correctly, the cut off blade started to get a bit slow in the 1200-1300 cut range. But, I am afraid I have slept since then.

And i thought my reloading room was "filled to the gills".

cfullgraf
March 29, 2013, 11:56 PM
= Sigh =

Wish I had a .300 BLK upper for my AR ... :D

Lots of fun to load for. Lots of fun to shoot. I shoot only supersonic 300 BLK, I am sure suppressed stuff is fun as well.

MaterDei
March 30, 2013, 12:01 AM
looking good. I've got a RRA lower waiting for some 300 Black uppers to be in stock at Wilson Combat.

Dave Rishar
March 30, 2013, 12:24 AM
You're pretty high tech compared to me. I deprime the 5.56mm in a universal die, tumble, use the chop saw without a stop (a hair under the shoulder by eyeball is where I cut), size in the 300 BLK die, trim with a Lee case holder in a cordless drill, and then tumble again if necessary, as these are field (not range) pickups that have been out in the weather for up to a few years. I'm still wondering whether or not to anneal the new neck but I'm think that I should, so that's another step.

It's a bit of work, but these will be subsonic only (meaning pistol pressures) and should last for a long time, so I figure that it's time well spent. And it's not like I can just buy it or something. :(

Lennyjoe
March 30, 2013, 03:38 AM
I put one together about a month ago. Got a DPMS 16" chrome lined 1-7 twist off of gunbroker for $199. Finding the flat top upper and BCG was a pain but I got it all together now. Shooting 125 gr TNT's over Lilgun til the suppressor comes in. When it dies im going to subs exclusively with this rifle.

Walkalong
March 30, 2013, 10:21 AM
I now have a 300 BLK WFT trimmer and it works quite well.Your posts were why I decided to try it. Yes, they work very nicely. Having the bearing cut to stop the shoulder works better than the PH trimmers stationary stop, but you pay for it of course.
the lathe is a good way to go but watch your fingers.Yea, I have nicked a finger that way before. Gotta be watchful all the time. Great way to get hurt.

This batch of brass is beat up around the case mouths some, so it is perfect for making .300 BLK. The ammo can is a bit bigger than a .50, whichever one that is.

If I remember correctly, the cut off blade started to get a bit slow in the 1200-1300 cut rangeSounds right, IIR your PM correctly. I plan on picking up a spare soon.

I just needed inspiration to get started. :)

Walkalong
March 30, 2013, 02:41 PM
I ran off 625 this morning. They are cut off, chamfered, and deburred. All they need now is sizing, final trimming, a light hand chamfer and deburr, and then remove the crimp on the primer pockets.

I used less than half of the cases in the ammo can, so I imagine I have close to 1500 in there. Now it's off to work to check an electrical problem they just called about. :)

Lennyjoe
March 30, 2013, 04:28 PM
Are you going to anneal them?

Walkalong
March 30, 2013, 06:07 PM
I figure they are freshly annealed, being once fired LC 08, and annealed right where they need it, which is where the new shoulder and neck will be, so no, I am not worried about annealing them.

I figured one thing out real fast, if you have a case with a dent where the new shoulder and neck will be you are better off saving the case for .223, because when you size/neck it down, it will buckle/double the dent and waste a case which may have been salvageable as a .223.

It's all sized and ready for the next steps. Time to take my sweetie out to dinner. :)

cfullgraf
March 30, 2013, 06:49 PM
I have not annealed any of my 300 BLK resized cases. While I have not put many firing/reloading cycles on any of the reformed 223 Rem cases, I have not experienced any short neck life.

The resizing is not very much so I doubt the brass gets worked very much. I used to form 7mm Int Rimmed from 30-30 without annealing. No problems either.

Finally, I form 6.5x54 Kurz Mauser. When I start with a 30 caliber case, neck life is short. But, if I start with 7-08 or 7x57 cases, neck life is "normal" without annealing.

Jesse Heywood
March 30, 2013, 09:43 PM
Hopefully Red won't develop a taste for bloody fingers! :D

Walkalong
March 30, 2013, 10:15 PM
Nah, but he'll chew up most anything he can reach. :)

highlander 5
March 30, 2013, 10:44 PM
Made 300 BLK brass with a file and trim die and a sawsall. Ran the case into die cut off excess with saw file and chamfer. From what I can put together no annealing is needed I have Redding 300/221 dies and replaced the expander ball with one made of carbide. Makes loading 300 Blk on my 650 much easier on wrist and elbows.

cfullgraf
March 31, 2013, 12:13 AM
Nah, but he'll chew up most anything he can reach. :)

Sounds like Red will take any intruders off at the ankles.:)

Walkalong
March 31, 2013, 10:26 PM
Finished them up this evening. I reamed the primer pockets, and while the WFT left the case mouths very clean, there were still a slight burr here and there inside the case mouth on a small percentage of the cases, so I lightly chamfered the inside of the case mouths. Overall I was very impressed with how clean the WFT trimmer left the case mouths. They could have been loaded as is.

Then into the tumbler for a couple of hours.

When cutting down .223 cases, I counted out 625 cases, and then did a couple more handfuls, with the idea being to get 600 good cases to load for a .30 cal ammo can to put away for a rainy day. The bullet hasn't been chosen, as testing is not yet finished.

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=182155&stc=1&d=1364779531

Woohoo. :)

cfullgraf
March 31, 2013, 10:38 PM
Overall I was very impressed with how clean the WFT trimmer left the case mouths. They could have been loaded as is.



My experience with the WFT as well. While the case mouths are pretty clean after running through the WFT, I like to knock off the sharp edges of the case mouth with a champ her/deburring tool. Takes no time at all.

I like the box of ready to go brass.:)

Forming 300 BLK from 223 Remington is pretty easy. When i did my batch last summer, I do not remember scrapping any cases from the forming/trimming process.

Walkalong
April 1, 2013, 08:29 AM
The only ones I had to scrap were ones that had a dent in the .223 case where it ended up in the neck of the .300 case. 5 or 6 out od 625+ cases maybe.

bds
April 1, 2013, 10:39 AM
Nice looking brass! Good job!

Would you consider doing a low velocity workup using Trail Boss and the X-Treme 150 gr plated bullets?

I figure even with a charge that filled the case, you would be fine pressure wise.

Hodgdon load data for .300 BLK (http://data.hodgdon.com/cartridge_load.asp)
110 gr Hornady V-MAX IMR Trail Boss .308" OAL 2.040" Start 4.5 gr (880 fps) 21,900 CUP - Max 6.3 gr (1046 fps) 20,200 CUP

115 gr Berger TGT FB IMR Trail Boss .308" OAL 2.050" Start 4.5 gr (894 fps) 23,200 CUP - Max 6.3 gr (1044 fps) 19,900 CUP

.308 load data
150 gr Nosler BT IMR Trail Boss .308" OAL 2.800" Start 10 gr (1176 fps) 25,800 PSI - Max 14 gr (1417 fps) 27,100 PSI

.223 load data
55 gr Hornady FMJ IMR Trail Boss .224" OAL 2.200" Max 4.0 gr 1074 fps

Walkalong
April 1, 2013, 11:10 AM
I would be concerned with getting a 150 Gr bullet out of the barrel with a .300 BLK case and Trail Boss. I don't mind sticking a bullet in a short pistol barrel, but a 16" barrel with a bullet stuck most of the way down doesn't sound fun.

If I tried the X-Treme 150 Gr in .300 BLK it would be starting around 1700 FPS and see if it could handle it. Work up to 1900ish it it could and see what happens. If it shot decent, it could be a cheap plinker, even cheaper than pulled 147s.

243winxb
April 1, 2013, 11:12 AM
How is the neck diameter of loaded rounds? :confused: Found this on Lee's website. http://i338.photobucket.com/albums/n420/joe1944usa/300AACBlackout.jpg

Walkalong
April 1, 2013, 11:19 AM
Definitely something to check. With my barrel and the LC 08 brass I used I am good to go, but with other barrels, who knows?

Good point. :)

angus6
April 1, 2013, 11:27 AM
There is a nice spring detent jig on IIRC the BLKout forum, can also be found on castboolits, will worth it if using the H/F saw.

I didn't like the way cut cases feed from casefeeder so I've just been doing all the sizing and trimming with the RT1200, didn't like milling a 1050 toolhead down but works slick and I've found I'd rather make 300BLK the process .223 brass

link to jig being used http://youtu.be/2rySmFSnk0U

Walkalong
April 1, 2013, 12:32 PM
I like that. Very nice. I bet folks have a lot of neat ideas for doing .300 BLK brass out there.

Boostedtwo
April 1, 2013, 01:28 PM
Wonder what blade he is using on that chop saw mine sure doesnt cut like that.

angus6
April 1, 2013, 07:54 PM
Boost my blade that came with the saw cuts like that, Here is a link from the guy making the jigs

http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y250/vonzep/th_1347886093.jpg (http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y250/vonzep/1347886093.mp4)

and a link where they can be found

http://www.300blktalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=179&t=80842&hilit=jig

Walkalong
April 1, 2013, 08:41 PM
What makes the cut off piece of brass shoot out like that?

Agh... I see. :)

cfullgraf
April 1, 2013, 08:44 PM
Wonder what blade he is using on that chop saw mine sure doesnt cut like that.

I ended up using the metal saw blade that came with the chop saw. I tried an abrasive cut off blade but it was slower than the steel blade. Also, the abrasive blade was consumed as it cut and life was fairly short.

The brass is softer than the blade and the thin walls

I also found that the blade lasts longer if you let it do the cutting as opposed to plunging the saw blade into the case. The plunge cuts work at first but dulls the blade.

At 1200-1300 cuts, my blade was pretty much shot but it was abused in part to determine its life. With proper use, it will last longer.

cfullgraf
April 1, 2013, 08:47 PM
What makes the cut off piece of brass shoot out like that?
I am wondering that as well. It might be the detent ball. The 22 caliber mouth of the next case pushes the cut case so the detent ball has room to move. As the detent ball clears the rim, it may have enough snap to push the case out.

The spring for the detent ball is probably fairly stout to keep the case from spinning during cutting.

Walkalong
April 1, 2013, 08:53 PM
From the link The just cut case gets ejected under spring power out the right side a couple inches and the next snaps in place!

Walkalong
April 7, 2013, 06:51 PM
I counted out about 525+ cases and started cutting them again today. Shortly into it the aluminum gear that is run by the belt loosened up and the wheel started slipping. My old eyes told me there was a pin in the gear so I took the thing apart. Wrong, it was a set screw (Uses a 2MM Allen wrench), and I could have fixed it without taking it apart. *sigh*

Got that fixed up with a touch of blue Loctite for good measure. The spring that helps keep the saw blade rotated up was a bit of a PIA to put back on, but not too bad.

Back to cutting cases. After finishing all the cases, I deburred and chamfered them. I am tumbling them for an hour or so and will size them later.

Red is still keeping an eye on things.

cajun executioner
April 7, 2013, 09:27 PM
I can't wait to start making 300blk brass. I just got my Forster dies in yesterday. I ordered the Redding 300k form and trim die. Do y'all use that?

cajun executioner
April 7, 2013, 09:31 PM
How is the neck diameter of loaded rounds? :confused: Found this on Lee's website. http://i338.photobucket.com/albums/n420/joe1944usa/300AACBlackout.jpg

Redding also mentions this

http://www.redding-reloading.com/images/stories/Pressinfo12/30blktrim.doc

Walkalong
April 7, 2013, 09:47 PM
I am going to add some measurements on neck thickness and neck diameters of loaded rounds soon, but the bottom line is that with my chamber I have no need to ream the necks.

I'll go get those measurements again.

Walkalong
April 7, 2013, 10:07 PM
RP factory .300 BLK case:

10.0 to 11.3 thousandths at the neck.


LC 08 case converted to .300 BLK:

11.3 to 12.8 thousandths at the neck.



Loaded round with a .3105 123 Gr Z Max intended for 7.62X39:

I measured it at .3346 at the widest spot on the neck.

This chambers freely in my .300 BLK barrel.

.0113 + .0128 + .3105 = .334.6. Hey, it matched my actual measurement of the loaded round. This doesn't always come out just that close.

What are other folks getting as far as actual measurements of loaded rounds with converted brass? What neck thicknesses are y'all seeing on other years of LC brass, as well as other brands of brass?

Ken70
April 8, 2013, 03:09 PM
I cerrosafed my 300BLK chamber, .335". So I keep the neck at .334" or less. Safest to actually measure what your chamber needs. Helps minimize the bullet that gets pinched and blows the gun up.

Walkalong
April 8, 2013, 04:36 PM
With a .308 bullet I would be at around .332 to .3325 (Some .308 bullets are a bit over .308)

Perhaps I will get some cerrosafe and do that though, even though I know they are chambering easily.

Any one else know their chamber measurements, or have loaded round neck OD measurements on your converted cases?

Walkalong
April 8, 2013, 08:59 PM
SAMMI (http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=8342872&postcount=8) diameter for the neck on .300 BLK is .335 (+.002), so the neck walls would have to be an average over .012 to cause a problem. That is assuming a .3085 bullet. .0125 gives .333, which gives .001 all the way around. Tight, but safe. .3085 + .01225 + .01225 = .333 That Lee piece says max .334, which is even tighter.

Naturally you have to test this in your chamber, and I now have some cerrosafe on the way, but I have already proven to myself that my .3346 round using a .3105 bullet clears. (Perhaps my chambers neck is over .335) That easily gives me .001+ clearance with a .308 bullet vs that 7.62X39 bullet in this LC08 brass. I have fired some of these 123 Gr .3105 Z Max bullets with no more pressure signs on the cases or primers and virtually the same velocity as the similar .3085 125 Gr SST. These are not max loads! I am sure the tighter bullet would show more pressure eventually.


My question is what other neck wall thicknesses are people seeing on other brass converted to .300 BLK before reaming, if it is reamed?

cfullgraf
April 8, 2013, 10:05 PM
Neck thickness on my reformed R-P 223 Remington cases average 0.0115" plus/minus 0.001". Necks were NOT reamed.

Neck thickness on R=P 300 BLK cases averaged 0.011"

I have only reformed a handful of 5.56 NATO cases but did not have to measure.

Walkalong
April 14, 2013, 06:06 PM
I made a cast of the forward part of the chamber today with the Cerrosafe. The neck has a slight taper. After cooling for an hour inside, just forward of the shoulder measured right at .3394 and then right at the end (forward of properly trimmed brass), it measures right at .338.

Wow, lots of room. No wonder I am having no problems with clearance. YMMV of course.

If I was making brass to sell commercially, I expect I would ream them to be sure, but for my use these will be fine as is. Even in a chamber with a .334 neck, a round that is .3326 (.0113 + .0128 + .3085 = .3326), or even .333 should be fine in any but an undersized chamber.

Other LC brass may be thicker, and that would definitely be pushing it. I wonder what other LC brass years measure out at after being converted.

The Cerrosafe description at Midway said:
It melts at a temperature just above M&M'sand that is pretty accurate. I melted a small portion of the Cerrosafe in an extra powder scale tray and poured it in the chamber through a cut off .06 case. Both held with Vise Grip pliers of course. The propane torch melted it it just like they said, nearly like M&Ms.

Oh yea, inside it was the cats supervising. Not much help actually. :)

243winxb
April 14, 2013, 10:43 PM
Walkalong, great write up & nice Cerrosafe cast. An online search found this 9th post down with some brass that may produce neck diameters on the large size?? :confused: http://www.300blktalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=141&t=80504

Walkalong
April 15, 2013, 08:35 AM
Yes, I have read numerous threads there. Looks like LC 5.56 has, in general, been OK, but some foreign cases have been too thick. Always pays to check things when forming cases, even with .300 BLK, which barely qualifies for case forming.

My first big clue I was OK, besides chambering an inert round, was a LC08 case fired round which would accept a bullet loosely in the neck.

Chambers are going to vary though, and it pays to check carefully. If my chamber had been .334, my non reamed brass necks would have been borderline OK.

cfullgraf
April 15, 2013, 08:48 AM
Yes, I have read numerous threads there. Looks like LC 5.56 has, in general, been OK, but some foreign cases have been too thick. Always pays to check things when forming cases, even with .300 BLK, which barely qualifies for case forming.



Several years ago, I weighed about 500 of W-W cases and 500 of LC cases. I think the LC cases were late 90's vintage but I do not specifically remember.

The W-W cases were significantly heavier than the LC cases.

As Walkalong said, it pays to check .

Also, remember what they say about "assume".

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