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Generous headspace/trim length....any problem with this??

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Unread 03-23-2006, 03:41 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 262
Generous headspace/trim length....any problem with this??

A couple months ago I bought one of the new savage/stevens 200's just as an experiment to see what my handloading and a inexpensive gun could do (300 win mag...$279).
I'm an avid handloader.... but am no gunsmith...and have just enough reloading tools to know this gun didn't come from the factory perfect. First my stoney point headspace kit is telling me the shoulders are blowing forward .030" on virgin brass. It doesn't seem to be a problem...I set my resize dies for .003" headspace or use collet dies for reloading and see no problems after 3-4 reloads with cracks above the belt. 2nd my sinclair insert kit is telling me that my actual trim length for this gun is about .050"
longer than book dimensions. (I guess it makes some sense if the barrel is hanging out about .030" away from the action.).
I know it would be easy to have a gunsmith crank the barrel down tighter but I kind of wanted to leave the gun in total stock condition and it seems to be a shooter the way it is. I have already got quite a few loads that shoot 2" and under at 200 yds.
I've read articles where people say you get better accuracy by having your cases near the trim length for your gun and it kind of makes sense that is possible. Can any of you guys tell me if there is any detriment to leaving the barrel where it sits? I guess one advantage is I probably never have to trim a case for the life of the case but if you think it might help accuracy I would have it cranked down closer.
Give this ROOKIE your opinions please...BTW--the barrel on that gun is amazingly easy to clean and shoots many rounds with no signs of accuracy loss to fouling...been a fun experiement for me.
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Unread 03-23-2006, 06:34 AM
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 6,516
Re: Generous headspace/trim length....any problem with this??

I have had 7 Dakota chambered rifles made with at least 4 different reamers. In all instances the Norma produced brass has been undersized with, if I remember, 20 or more thousandths of blowing forward. I have never found this to be a problem in case life.
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Unread 03-23-2006, 08:34 AM
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Location: Fort Shaw, Montana
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Re: Generous headspace/trim length....any problem with this??


Basically look at this as you loading for a wildcat. Nothing different, once the case is fireformed to the chamber dimensions your problem is over, as long as you do not return the case to its original virgin dimensions while sizing the case you will be fine.

With formed cases I see no reason to bother adjusting your barrels headspace measurement unless its keeping you up at night.

Fireform your brass, do not bump your shoulder back to much when sizing and have fun with her!!!

You are surely getting some case stretching on the initial firing but probably not enough to worry about, after that the shoulder will control any case stretching that would occur otherwise.

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Unread 03-23-2006, 12:14 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: White City, Saskatchewan
Posts: 218
Re: Generous headspace/trim length....any problem with this??

I posted a similar topic a few weeks back. I bought new 300 wim mag Nosler brass and it was short 2.602" and after firing it grew .015" and I wondered if this was alright. Nobody said to stop what I was doing so I keep on shooting without any problems.
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