Quantcast

Nickel brass worthwhile to reload?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by jeeptim, Jul 2, 2020.

  1. Dudemeister

    Dudemeister Member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    687
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Almost everyone at my local range uses brass cases, and my nickle cases are easy to spot. I also use a red marker around the primer, which really makes it easy to differentiate, but to be sure, a nice shiny nickle case with a copper plated bullet on top certainly looks great.

    Some of my oldest cases are nickle plated .38 SPL, and the nickle started wearing out in places, but never had any splits. I did have a few that the nickle flaked off around the mouth, and they went in the trash, but they're not any more fragile than normal brass.
     
  2. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    65,854
    Location:
    Alabama
    I have shot some until you could hardly tell they used to be nickle coated.
     
    Riomouse911 likes this.
  3. Waterboy3313

    Waterboy3313 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2019
    Messages:
    656
    Location:
    Redding CA
    I guess the one benefit for me is I only clean my cases in an ultrasonic cleaner. The nickel cases do look good after cleaning compared to brass cases depending on how much time and what solution I use. Shoot em and reload em until they are garbage.
     
    Riomouse911 and tightgroup tiger like this.
  4. 1976B.L.Johns.

    1976B.L.Johns. Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Messages:
    1,180
    Location:
    Very Northern Minnesota
    Yup, like everything else.
     
    Riomouse911 likes this.
  5. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2010
    Messages:
    10,148
    Location:
    East TN
    I've been lubricating all my handgun cases even when sizing in a carbide die for the past couple years. It makes the sizing process slicker. Since I clean cases after sizing anyway, no big deal on my part.
     
    Riomouse911 and tightgroup tiger like this.
  6. .38 Special

    .38 Special Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Messages:
    3,655
    As a very lazy sort of fellow, I avoid lubing cases as much as possible. I never lube handgun cases, whether nickel or brass. The only exception is 500 S&W brass. Sizing those cases, even in carbide dies, is a real workout without lube.
     
    FROGO207, Obturation and Sneakshot92 like this.
  7. AR-Bossman

    AR-Bossman Member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2016
    Messages:
    350
    The Lone Ranger had nickel cases, that's all the justification I need.
     
  8. Dudemeister

    Dudemeister Member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    687
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Yes, but he also used silver bullets.Are you topping yours with silver? You must be a rich man ! :)
    While searching to find out if the Lone Ranger cases were regular brass or nickel plated, I came across this add for Remington ammo, which touts one advantage that Nickel plated cases have over brass: they prevent corrosion.
    https://www.luckygunner.com/remington-nickel-plated-umc-target-ammo-review
     
  9. drband

    drband Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2014
    Messages:
    2,474
    Location:
    GA
    Nickel plated brass has never presented a problem for me.
     
  10. whughett

    whughett Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Messages:
    3,782
    Location:
    Rhode Island/Florida
    I have a batch of 500 cases the over the past 20 years have been loaded in 38 WC for a S&W Model 52. Split case mouths are slowly reducing the amount but can’t say at any greater rate than the yellow brass I load for 38 SWC. I've never had any flaking but a few are starting to look less Nickle plated as if the repeated tumbling is wearing the Nickle finish thinner.
     
  11. Eugen

    Eugen Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2016
    Messages:
    277
    Location:
    Newburgh, IN
    After reading this thread: "I want to find me some Ni plated brass so I can handload it!"
     
  12. Catpop

    Catpop Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,289
    Location:
    Eastern NC
    I use nickel plated 357 cases to keep them separate from my brass 38 spc. cases. Let’s see, been doing it since the 70s with no issues first on Lyman Spartan, then on Dillon SD, and now on Dillon 550 with (RCBS carbide die) Hum that’s durn near half a century!
    Yeah, I’m that old!
    I have saved up a few hundred brass 357 cases I have found or came mixed in with nickel cases I bought, but am holding them back for hard times!
    Yeah, I’m that tight!
    The nickel looks great I’m my pistol belt and doesn’t develop verdigris as quick as brass!
    Nope, I ain’t that anal! It’s a function thing with me!
    Happy 4th to all!
     
  13. jeeptim

    jeeptim Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2010
    Messages:
    884
    Location:
    California
    So midway through sizing and priming abou5 600 223 nickel cases found speer 2012 cases have very loose primer pockets. Not sure if or how many reloads but those are the only bad ones I have found so far.
     
  14. Waterboy3313

    Waterboy3313 Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2019
    Messages:
    656
    Location:
    Redding CA
    I shot 120 357 magnum rounds this morning. 60 nickel plated and 60 regular brass. I had 4 cases split at the neck. Not the full length of the case but enough to be pretty obvious. Anyone want to guess which cases split? I will give you a hint it wasn't the regular brass cases.
     
  15. TonyAngel

    TonyAngel Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Messages:
    3,686
    For .38, .45acp and 9mm, I load nickel brass indiscriminately. I don't mark it to indentify what is mine either. I just pick up what I see. Sometimes I pick up what is there and sometimes I leave some of mine behind. When I notice one with a split, I throw it away.
     
  16. lightman

    lightman Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,031
    Location:
    england,ar
    I've loaded a lot of nickel brass with no problems. Some of it seemed to be harder than non nickel and I got split cases with fewer loads and some didn't. And the nickel seemed to peel off of some of them while it didn't on some others. In short, I prefer non nickel but will load nickel if I have it.
     
  17. Jim Bowie

    Jim Bowie Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2019
    Messages:
    137
    I have loaded nickel. 45 Colt cartridges with Black Powder. They are much easier to get clean inside and out.
     
    .38 Special likes this.
  18. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2013
    Messages:
    4,863
    Location:
    Ca.
    I’ve loaded lots of brass and nickel revolver rounds. I like to use the brass cases for general plinking ammo and nickel cases for HP or maybe a specialty round.

    I’ve found the nickel ones split at the same rate as my brass cases, which really isn’t all that often.

    Stay safe.
     
  19. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2010
    Messages:
    10,148
    Location:
    East TN
    For those who don't know...

    The chemicals used to tan leather react with brass. So, cartridge loops on a belt will tarnish and corrode the brass cases of ammunition. Nickel plating does not react with the chemicals so is a better choice when carrying ammunition in leather belts for long periods of time.
     
  20. MikeInOr

    MikeInOr Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2016
    Messages:
    1,367
    Location:
    Oregon
    I load and reload nickel brass for my classic firearms like my C96, P08 and P38. I like the visual difference for distinguishing the low power loads from regular loads. I even thought of copper plating some cases for special high power loads.
     
  21. santacruzdave
    • Contributing Member

    santacruzdave Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2014
    Messages:
    216
    Location:
    Santa Cruz California
  22. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2008
    Messages:
    9,522
    Location:
    Mount Desert Island Maine
    I just purchased 250 300 Savage plated brass from a member on here to load. If I was worried about the plating I would have passed on the sale. In the FWIW department I have loaded some of my 38 SPL brass so many iimes the headstamp has all but been peened off. None of the plated were more susceptible to splits thanthe regular brass. YMMV
     
    Highland Lofts likes this.
  23. JPIMBO

    JPIMBO Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2019
    Messages:
    90
    I don’t think I’d use nickel 303 British brass to reform to something else. If it anneal maybe but sounds too tough. Might even flake.
     
  24. Natsun

    Natsun Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2020
    Messages:
    20
    Can't say for sure, but after trimming some Nickle plated 5.56 brass my Wilson trimmer blade became so dull it wouldn't trim anymore. Maybe the time had just come for that blade, I'm not sure. But it was coincidence enough to get me to put the Nickle plated brass aside.
     
  25. Paul R Zartman
    • Contributing Member

    Paul R Zartman Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2020
    Messages:
    459
    Location:
    Redington Shores Fl
    if I buy new, I buy nickel, haven't had any issues loading or reloading. I also only reload all my ammo only 6.3 times before I recycle it. Only time I split necks was when I was experimenting ...both brass and nickel
     
    JPIMBO likes this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice