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Why is sorting headstamps so important?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by jeeptim, Aug 24, 2011.

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  1. jeeptim

    jeeptim Member

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    Getting read to do a LOT of reloading If I have a few thousend pulled 147gr fmj for plinking out of an M-1A Saiga 308 HK-91 in the past have used all the same H/S same amount of powder seating depth crimp same primers dies locked in a turret press from start to finish and out of 3 to 4000 maybe 10 to 20 f2f or fail to chamber
    What if i used several different quality cases either commercial or nato let me know what you think.
     
  2. Hondo 60

    Hondo 60 Member

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    With straight-walled pistol cases it's probably not important at all.

    But I keep ALL of my brass sorted by head stamp.
    But this is probably a lot more important with rifle cases.
    The main reason is that case capacity can be different from one mfg to another.

    For 45acp it also helps keep lg & sm primered cases separate
     
  3. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I sort my brass because I can't help myself! :banghead:
     
  4. Twmaster

    Twmaster Member

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    Quality Control is a good excuse to sort by headstamp. As Hondo points out not all brass is 100% identical. I also am looking for junk brands of brass (AMERC) and also to sort out potentially crimped military brass. (WCC, LC etc) The crimps must be removed before reloading.

    I also use the exercise of sorting the brass by headstamp as a good opportunity to give my cases an initial inspection.

    I've loaded about 2000 9MM, 7.62 Tokarev and 8MM Mauser rounds in the last 5 or 6 weeks. Not one round has failed to chamber, feed, fire or eject in my guns.
     
  5. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    I usually sort my rifle brass, due to theoretical accuracy differences. But I haven't worked up any brass-specific loads. So sometimes I sort after loading.

    For pistol brass, I will sort when I notice a problem. Once, I was noticing inconsistent OAL with my luger reloads (before I started making custom seater plugs), and I tracked it down to Speer brass being thinner. Never really loaded it much before, so I was surprised to find a brass that's even thinner than R-P. So I try to sort it out, now, and use it for cast bullets.
     
  6. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    For pistol cases it gives people with OCD something to do.
     
  7. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    For this sorting by headstamp is a waste of time. Work up a load that is safe in the heaviest cases you will use and load away. You will never see it on target with cheap FMJ bullets.
     
  8. The Bushmaster

    The Bushmaster Member

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    Because "Neatness counts"...
     
  9. Stormin.40

    Stormin.40 Member

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    3 reasons for me,

    1- I sort my pistol brass for consistant OAL, I went from a +/-.004 to +/-.001 by sorting headstamps.

    2- As was already mentioned some brass has thinner walls that won't hold the bullet as well, R-P for me is used for lead bullets.

    3- Good opportunity to inspect the brass 1 more time to be sure all defective cases are thrown out.
     
  10. dprice3844444

    dprice3844444 member

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    some brass may have different internal capacities than others which might increase pressure
     
  11. Funshooter45

    Funshooter45 Member

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    Different rifle brass will have different interior dimensions caused by variations in brass thickness. The different interior dimensions equate to different pressure phenomena when you fire them. That difference in pressure will affect accuracy to some extent.

    Also different rifle brass has different things happen as you fire them multiple times. For instance, the Federal brass that I use in 270 WSM and 7 mm mag tends to get loose in the primer pockets after about 3-4 firings. They will be so loose that a regular CCI primer is barely able to stay in them. So I know in advance that after the 3rd firing in those Federal cases that I will need to use a Wolf LRM primer about one or two loadings and then toss them. Or another example, I had a batch of Remington .243 brass that started to get splits in the neck after just 3 firings. After the 3rd firing when I had 10 out of 50 of them split, I knew I could just throw away the whole batch. It wasn't worth the effort of dealing with more splits.
     
  12. dprice3844444

    dprice3844444 member

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    fun,wont that dillon pocker swager resize the pockets?
     
  13. alongston

    alongston Member

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    Mostly for organization of your workspace.
     
  14. OldmanFCSA

    OldmanFCSA Member

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    I laughed at this response - because it fits me perfectly!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    GREAT JOB !!!! (for admitting it too)
     
  15. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I only sort if there turns out to be a problem with one type, or if there is some special extra good brass like starline or lapua.
     
  16. popper

    popper Member

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    Just to cull out the junk stuff and known problem stuff like primer pocket size, crummy brass etc. If you run into a brass related problem while reloading, THEN you get to sort by HS.
     
  17. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    I probably sort it as often as I don't sort. But for me it doesn't seem to be as important, because most of what I load is compressed charges.
    Fail to chamber, fail to fire? Do you mean they will not fit the chamber thus not allowing the action to go into full battery? Your OAL may be too long or something with the brass, possibly the crimp, is interfering and preventing the round from completely chambering. Since your stating it won't chamber I would assume the primer is not being struck at all, correct?
     
  18. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Member

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    For plinking or even hunting purposes, it's not.
    That being said, I do it anyway. Cause that's how I roll. I fit into the OCD catagory that jmoriss mentioned.
     
  19. Josh45

    Josh45 Member

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    Because I can and want to.

    Different case capacity, Just by looking into the case after being filled. Noticeable thickness in the case wall. OAL Change is a pain sometimes.

    Checking for splits and such. I just tumbled 300 pieces of 30-30 brass and I found just one case that had a split in the neck going down to the middle of the body of the brass.
    So yeah, Its a good thing to sort so you can check them.
     
  20. FLIGHT762

    FLIGHT762 Member

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    I sort for all of the listed reasons plus, If I have different rifles in the same caliber (which I do) I can use certain brand head stamps for certain rifles.
     
  21. 191145acp

    191145acp member

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    millitary brass is thicker walled than commercial brass, therefore less case capacity
     
  22. 918v

    918v Member

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    Some brass cases are as much as .003" bigger in diameter at the casehead and fit the chamber mor snugly. Some cases have necks that are as much as .010" thicker than others. Reloading is about paying attention to detail. If people wanna be slobs, they should take on another hobby.
     
  23. gregj

    gregj Member

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    I only reload 223 in rifle, and primarily my once-fired brass, so sorting rafle brass is not an issue for me.

    Sorting straight walled pistol brass is important, depending on what you do with it. My son and I shoot USPSA, and I reload 45ACP (as well as a few others). For this, sorting headstamps is a must. During a match, I do not want a jam because a POS brass like R-P allowed bullet setback enough to cause a 3-point-jam. I sort my match brass for this reason - and have not had any issues since I've started. But I do not sort my normal range brass. I also run all the match ammo through a Wilson cartridge gauge.
     
  24. 243winxb

    243winxb Member

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    Why Sort Brass by Headstamp? Different Component=Different Pressure.

    Prvi Partizan brass in 308 win. , when reloaded, can be over pressure with a normal starting load. Seen it here on THR.
     
  25. Pict

    Pict Member

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    I only load pistol cartridges (.38, .357, .45, .380, 9x18mm), and the only sorting I do is to pull the ones with the too-tight primer pockets. I pull WWII dated military .45 brass out, but I don't see those all that often.
     
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