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243 AI brass?

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Old 04-11-2011, 01:46 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Washington state
Posts: 105
243 AI brass?

Is brass for the 243 AI readily available? Or would i need to make some alterations to regular 243 brass?
I am considering building a 243AI and was curious about the brass situation.
Will the 243 AI shoot light bullets for varmints like the standard 243?
I want this gun to be a varmint/deer combo gun capable of handling loads as light as 60grn and heavy as 105 grn.
What is the standard twist rate of a 243? I know in the original 6mm(244) it was 1in12 and I was thinking 1in10 or so. Am i on the right track here?
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Old 04-11-2011, 07:03 AM
Gold Member
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 935
Re: 243 AI brass?

wow, lot of questions that only you can answer.
use this forum and the internet to do your research, and then decide which bbl/twist rate/etc. you want to go with. and , no the brass is not "off the shelf" you have to fire form it.
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Old 04-11-2011, 07:36 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Rapid City, South dakota
Posts: 410
Re: 243 AI brass?

You pretty much have to fireform your brass but all is not lost because all you need to do is shoot regular .243 ammo in it and it will fireform when its shot.
As far as shooting light and heavy bullets that will be kind of hard to do as it usually takes two different twists to do this. Best thing to do is tell the gunsmith what you wish to do and he can find a happy medium for you. That or you will find it won't do either.
1in10 will do well with the heavy's but I doubt that it will very well with the 60's.
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Old 04-11-2011, 11:20 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Washington state
Posts: 105
Re: 243 AI brass?

haha....yes it was a lot of questions. I figured i would save a few posts and clear it up in one.
Can fireforming be done with light charges of powder or would I need to use a full strength charge?
Since I am new to this I will work closely with a smith, but wanted to have some knowledge of it before I take my project to him.
Realisticly what kind of a gain am I going to get with a 243AI over a standard 243?
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Old 04-11-2011, 11:42 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Gillette, WY
Posts: 2,613
Re: 243 AI brass?

Well here is a question to help me (& others) answer your question:

As far as fire forming goes, will you be reloading these cartridges or will they be "off the shelf"?

If you are hand loading them, it was recommended to me by Sierra to seat your bullets to jam into the lands at close to the maximum powder charge for that cartridge/ bullet combo.

Sounds bad right? not really, as you fire the round, the cartridge starts to fire form which increased the internal capacity of the cartridge thus, lowering the chamber pressure.

The reason I load the rounds long & jam them into the lands is, in MY testing, it tends to"completely" form the cartridge much better (with a push feed action), because the cartridge cannot move around inside the chamber during the firing process.

Last edited by Outlaw6.0; 04-11-2011 at 11:54 AM.
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Old 04-11-2011, 11:59 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Washington state
Posts: 105
Re: 243 AI brass?

Good info. Sorry I asked such a plethera of questions in my original post. I am just very excited about diving into the world of custom guns. I am finaly in a place to be able to do so and I think it is a very interesting topic.
Thanks to everybody foe the help!
Good luck to everyone in their own projects.
Keep on shootin'
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Old 04-11-2011, 05:12 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 115
Re: 243 AI brass?

I just finished building a 243AI and love it. Most factory 243 are a 1in9.25 and will stabilize a 105gr. If you are looking to shoot mostly heavy bullets id stick to a 1in9. Fireforming brass is very easy and could be done with varmint loads for some fun shooting. I like the 95gr VLD and 105VLD in mine. Velocity gains are about 200fps faster than 243win. Another factor is the minimal amount of cases strech that an AI has after intial firing. I am using lapua brass and it has been very good in forming.
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