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steel casings

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by esmith, Sep 14, 2007.

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  1. esmith

    esmith Member

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    Why are steel casings generally not favored for reloading? Is it because its mostly berdan primed? Or is it more brittle and doesn't flow as well as brass? Has anyone tried reloading steel?
     
  2. Bartkowski

    Bartkowski Member

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    I'd guess because it doesn't hold up as well to shaping over and over, and it would probably be harder on your dies.
     
  3. Cheesemaker

    Cheesemaker Member

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    Steel?
    If you are refering to the cheap grey (usually aluminum), often berdan primed, stuff - it is not worth the effort to deprime and reload.
    Also, I doubt aluminum would hold up well to any kind of reloading "stress" anyway.

    If you are refering to nickel plated (usually brass), boxer primed, cases - these are great. Regular brass is good too.

    Which steel cases are you refering to in particular?
     
  4. MudPuppy

    MudPuppy Member

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    Wolf stuff?
     
  5. Bartkowski

    Bartkowski Member

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    I am pretty sure he means steel cased ammo like wolf, and some surplus. The grey wolf ammo I have is not aluminum, it is steel, says it right on the box, and I don't think they are lying.
     
  6. esmith

    esmith Member

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    I am talking about copper washed steel and the like. Wolf too i guess could be considered but i meant the stuff i have. And why is it not worth attempting to reload.
     
  7. eldon519

    eldon519 Member

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    There are a number of issues. Alot of them are berdan primed, but not all. Depriming berdan is a huge pain in the rear, and berdan primers are not that common. Steel cases also tend to work harden and get really brittle causing splits and failures. Wolf is also coated with polymer which I think would probably come off during resizing and may build up in your die and leave the ammo susceptible to rust. If you wanted to reuse them much, you'd probably need to anneal them which would also impose problems with the polymer because it may burn. Even in new form, steel cases sometimes don't expand enough to completely seal the chamber too. Some manufacturers also warn against using steel because it can increase the wear on various parts.

    In short you can do it, but it's just not worth it really...especially if a case fails and injures you or your gun.
     
  8. esmith

    esmith Member

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    I am talking about copper washed cases. Not polymer ones.
     
  9. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Generally speaking, Steel cases are non-reloadable. The novice definitely does not need to try it. A few intrepid souls have tried it and still reload it some. I advise against it. You do not have the safety factor of brass. :)

    Do a thread search. This has been debated numerous times. My advise is always the same. Just don't do it. :uhoh:
     
  10. trickyasafox

    trickyasafox Member

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    I've done the steel wolf 223 cases. Careful not all wolf 223 is boxer primed. It loaded just fine for me. I got 4 or 5 loads out of it and chucked it. Didn't want to trim it and it had stretched a good way out of spec. Primer pockets held tight the whole time. Chamfer the inside of the case mouth or they'll shave bullets on you. it's nice shoot it and leave it brass for when your shooting in a place where you won't recover it.

    I never find wolf steel pistol brass by me, or I'd try it. If only so more people know its fine to do.
     
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