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A reload has a very tiny 'ridge' above the head: .303.

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Ignition Override, Feb 16, 2010.

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  1. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    Still a brand-new reloader: two-three weeks, and mostly new Prvi straight from the box, used in my rifles.
    Caution suggests that I throw this round deep into the river.

    These "HXP"s ('69') and "R P"s along with once(?)-fired Prvis were bought in an online private deal, but have no way to verify how many times any were reloaded before they were used just one time, days ago.

    The newer Prvi ammo always has the very narrow band above the rim which is shinier than the other areas.
    This one case somehow caught my attention, and I can somehow feel with my fingernail a very tiny, very subtle, but sharp ridge which goes part way around the case.
    It is really difficult to see.
    Won't use this unless this is considered safe by experienced LR reloaders.
     
  2. Remo-99

    Remo-99 Member

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    That is an indication to me that the case has stretched, and thinned in that area.
    From long headspace or thin rimmed cases or whatever.

    The case has expanded to fill a 'loose' chamber, and stopped at the casehead web/base.

    Both conditions typical of old milsurp SMLE's.

    Neck sizing has some benefits there for extending case life.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2010
  3. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    This was used only once, either in the original #4 or #5, from the time it arrived.

    Would that round probably be safe to shoot?:confused:

    Either way, a test group of about ten rounds of shiny Prvi have been used five times in the "Jungle Carbine" and they look perfect, 37-39 grains of IMR 4064. Have used only 147 grain bullets, after the Prvi boxes' original 174 grain bullets first left those shells.

    The only dies used are (1) the depriming/neck-sizing plus the (2) seating die.
     
  4. Remo-99

    Remo-99 Member

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    Looking into the case with a penlight torch or under good lighting will show you if there is an internal groove where the external bright ring is. This means the casing has thinned in that area, with necksizing and moderate loads the cases maybe still usable(depending how much it has stretched).
    This the main reason why I don't like to reload for milsurp rifles.
    If the shoulders are filled out with moderate loads on virgin brass and then necksized from then on, then there's a better chance of avoiding early casehead seperations.
     
  5. JimKirk

    JimKirk Member

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    A photo would be of great help in this case.

    A good, clear, in focus photo.

    Jimmy K
     
  6. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    Sigh of pending case head seperation. Scrap it. Some Prvi brass in 308 has been producing over pressure loads using starting load data. Problems with the brass. You can find some photos here. Look for a thin shiny line. http://www.photobucket.com/joe1944usa
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2010
  7. armoredman

    armoredman Member

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    Paperclip straightened out, and a small 90 degree bend at the end. Put that down the inside of the case, see if you can "hook" a groove inside the case at the bottowm. If you can scrape that bent paperclip from the bottom up and not feel that little hook slide into a groove, you should be OK. I never load 303 hot, and can get 5-7 loads per case.
    Buy a bag of new Winchester brass, full length resize the first time, then neck size from then on out.
     
  8. rwsmuin@hotmail.com

    rwsmuin@hotmail.com Member

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    It sounds like you should take the rifle to a gunsmith and have your chamber checked out. If the cases are stretching you will not have a ridge on the outside of the case it will be just a shiny ring around the case, about 1/4 inch up from the head. You will feel a slight raised area but not a ridge!
     
  9. counterclockwise

    counterclockwise Member

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    Lee Enfields are notorious for stretching the case because of loose chambers and or because the bolt is supported at the rear and not at the front (lug engagement). The chambers were cut for loose fit to assure function during combat conditions, and not to assuage frugal reloaders. If extra care is not taken (limiting shoulder bump back) using FL dies, a life of only two or three reload cycles is about all one can expect. The bright ring on the outside is a red flag for case stretch.
     
  10. Duce1

    Duce1 Member

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    Has hit the nail dead center. 303 Brit is about the worse I know for this. It can happen to new first time loaded casings as well. Please do as another suggested with the paper clip trick and check the casings before reloading them.

    Just check before doing and destroy the ones that have stretched to keep from reloading in the future.
     
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