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Reloading Berger Bullets


reloading 1X fired brass

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Unread 06-17-2013, 06:58 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Vancouver Wa
Posts: 63
reloading 1X fired brass

I have been reloading brass not originally shot from my rifles for many different cartridges for decades and haven't encountered any problems as long as I full length resized before using. My question is have I been wrong??? I had a deal to sell some 1X fired brass to a guy and at the last moment he backed out stating "Sorry but I cannot buy that brass. Just spoke with the guy who is building my rifle he advised me to not buy any brass thay has been fired. Apparently the cases have memory to your chamber. If yoir chamber is larger than mine the case will try to expand to that once fired in mine causing ejection problems. He told me its not worth the risk." I have never encountered that problem and am wondering if his gunsmith is making pre-excuses for a crappy build? Any thoughts on this and should I throw away all my old brass and go and buy all new brass. I would have to cash out the IRA account but if that is what it takes.....
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Unread 06-17-2013, 07:41 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Belton Texas
Posts: 72
Re: reloading 1X fired brass

x 1 fired brass works just fine for me...he is prob just running out of money cause his rifle build is costing him so much and now has figured what it will cost to get glass put on it....either that or he found a better deal somewhere.

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Unread 06-17-2013, 07:52 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: The cold part of Montana
Posts: 1,391
Re: reloading 1X fired brass

When I rebarreled both the 7 mag and 22-250, I reused all the brass from the factory chambers. The only issue I ran into was if the case had, had enough reloadings on it to have hardened the shoulder some, it would chamber hard, but annealing fixed that. NO I think your process of full length sizing is fine, but annealing seems to alleviate some issues.
Keep in mind the animals we shoot for food and display are not bullet proof. Contrary to popular belief, they bleed and die just like they did a hundred years ago. Being competent with a given rifle is far more important than impressive ballistics and poor shootability. High velocity misses never put a steak in the freezer.

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Unread 06-17-2013, 07:53 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Near Napoleon,MI
Posts: 1,192
Re: reloading 1X fired brass

The biggest risk with once fired brass is that if the chamber was way out of spec the wall of the cartridge near the base might have stretched quite a bit, which is irreversible. Its not easy to detect and measure either, unless you have a special gauge made up to do it and check each cartridge individually.

Given that a lot of surplus brass that people use is 223 or 308 and both are fired in high volumes from various machine guns, which by their nature require "loose" headspace to be reliable, I do all I can to only buy brass that was fired in regular rifles or even better in bolt guns. In the last while, new brass has been unobtainable.
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Unread 06-17-2013, 08:02 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Alabama
Posts: 9,955
Re: reloading 1X fired brass

I've never had any issues firing 1-fired brass I bought used or picked up at the range. I use a SB die for my 5.56 brass so it sizes them back to factory spec for a loose chamber. My bolt guns I just neck-size them after depriming and cleaning, and have never had any issues. Maybe I've been lucky?
"I'm just a peckerwood who lives in the hills with too many guns..." - Bob Lee Swagger

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Unread 06-17-2013, 08:38 PM
Gold Member
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Mechanicsville, VA
Posts: 578
Re: reloading 1X fired brass

If you are going to throw out all your brass, I'll take it!! LOL. Because of what's going on I'll be shooting fired brass from other rifles in my new 25.06. I haven't given it a second thought.
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Unread 06-17-2013, 09:51 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: central Georgia
Posts: 408
Re: reloading 1X fired brass

xtratoy, What the riflebuilder said is true.It may not be the case every time,but it happens often.It happened to me with my first custom. I used my brass that was fired in a factory chamber in my new custom .300 RUM rifle and I had brass to stick in the chamber several times. Changing to new brass solved the problem. A fairly reliable way to check used brass is to cycle it through your action before it has been resized. Sometimes people resize their brass too much in order to get it to fit in a new chamber. If this process continues, sooner or later the cartridge case will separate at the web and part of the case will be stuck in the chamber. Some people are lucky and this never happens to them, but it is possible. Gary
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