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Using cases as headspace gauges.

 
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  #1  
Old 08-23-2013, 10:46 AM
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Using cases as headspace gauges.

I recently heard a shooter say that he uses a "fired" case for a go gauge (and then sticks a piece of tape on the back of it for the no-go guage).

I am of the opinion that if he is going to use a case for a gauge, it would be a FAR better choice to use a "sized" case (re-sized in a reloading press/die), with reasoning being that the fired case will likely be streched beyond the true "go" size. Am I not correct about that?

But then I got to thinking, maybe it would be even MORE accurate to use a completely fresh VIRGIN case (unfired & un-resized). Or would that actually be shorter than the true go size??
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  #2  
Old 08-23-2013, 11:33 AM
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Re: Using cases as headspace gauges.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Heat View Post
I am of the opinion that if he is going to use a case for a gauge, it would be a FAR better choice to use a "sized" case (re-sized in a reloading press/die), with reasoning being that the fired case will likely be streched beyond the true "go" size. Am I not correct about that?
While not ideal, if you are going to use a case as a go gauge, a sized case would be the way to go. A sized case is much more likely to be in SAAMI specs.

Using a fired case is just plain idiotic. If the case has been fired in an out of spec chamber, the error will simply be transferred.

There is no guarantee that virgin brass will be in spec, either. Sized brass would be a safer bet.

However, I am going to go on a mini-rant here. Max Heat, please understand that I am not directing this at you.

Headspace gauges are not expensive. Anyone who is too cheap to buy a correct set of headspace gauges should not be performing tasks where they are needed in the first place. There is no excuse for performing critical gunsmithing tasks without the right tools. Anyone who does it is a moron who deserves to be cleansed from the gene pool. The trouble is moronic decisions applied to things that go bang often hurt someone other than the moron who made them.

The same jackwagons who won't spend a few bucks on a set of headspace gauges are generally the same people who won't buy a reloading manual either and often view the load development process as an inconvenience, instead prowling the internet asking people for their load data.

Why on God's Green Earth people who will spend larger sums of money on a rifle, scope, and basic reloading equipment pathologically refuse to acquire the correct tools to safely participate in their hobby is beyond me. Personally, I would be afraid to spend much time in the presence of armed people of such poor judgement.

End of Rant
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  #3  
Old 08-23-2013, 01:04 PM
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Re: Using cases as headspace gauges.

What you say does sound like the only 100% "sensiblble" way to go about it. But with all of the switch-barreling going on these days, it seems that many are shortcutting on REAL gauges, not wanting to shell out the money for all of the different calibers that they shoot. Believe it or not, the place where I saw the statement about using fired cases as a gauges is actually an older post located on THIS site (different sub-forum, I think). I won't show the link, and put the poster on the hotseat. But maybe SOMEBODY should educate him though, as his method would cause the HS to continually grow, eventually leading to an unsafe situation.

That being said, the only "bullet proof" method that I would condone, for someone wanting to cheap out on the gauges, would be to properly headspace the firearm using a real gauge, and then running some cases through it until one that EXACTLY mimmics the feel of the gauge is found. Then that case should be clearly marked as a gauge, never-again being, sized, loaded up, or fired.
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Old 08-23-2013, 01:48 PM
wbm wbm is offline
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Re: Using cases as headspace gauges.

Quote:
The same jackwagons who won't spend a few bucks on a set of headspace gauges are generally the same people who won't buy a reloading manual either and often view the load development process as an inconvenience, instead prowling the internet asking people for their load data.
What a bunch of calumnious nonsense.!
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  #5  
Old 08-24-2013, 05:21 PM
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Re: Using cases as headspace gauges.

"...I got to thinking, maybe it would be even MORE accurate to use a completely fresh VIRGIN case (unfired & un-resized). Or would that actually be shorter than the true go size??"

Quit thinking; yes a virgin case is virtually certain to be smaller than ideal in all dimensions.

You give us no clue what you're trying to "headspace" but actual headspace (the chamber) for a bottle neck cartridge hardly matters to a competent handloader who knows how to make his cases fit his chamber.
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  #6  
Old 08-25-2013, 12:17 AM
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Re: Using cases as headspace gauges.

What I have started doing is setting my headspace with a gage first, then firing one round with my new brass.
I then take that case and full length size it in my die, and reset my headspace to that resized case. I make a no-go by sticking a .002" piece of SS shim stock to the case head.
You end up with your headspace custom set to your die to minimize brass flow and possibly extend case life.
Maybe not the best method to use if you are going to shoot factory cartridges also but I handload only.
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  #7  
Old 08-25-2013, 01:03 AM
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Re: Using cases as headspace gauges.

Quote:
Originally Posted by benchracer View Post
Headspace gauges are not expensive. Anyone who is too cheap to buy a correct set of headspace gauges should not be performing tasks where they are needed in the first place. There is no excuse for performing critical gunsmithing tasks without the right tools. Anyone who does it is a moron who deserves to be cleansed from the gene pool. The trouble is moronic decisions applied to things that go bang often hurt someone other than the moron who made them.

The same jackwagons who won't spend a few bucks on a set of headspace gauges are generally the same people who won't buy a reloading manual either and often view the load development process as an inconvenience, instead prowling the internet asking people for their load data.

Why on God's Green Earth people who will spend larger sums of money on a rifle, scope, and basic reloading equipment pathologically refuse to acquire the correct tools to safely participate in their hobby is beyond me. Personally, I would be afraid to spend much time in the presence of armed people of such poor judgement.

End of Rant
THANK YOU!!!!!!

If you're too cheap to buy a $20-30 manual, just go buy factory ammo and sell your reloading equipment. Manuals come in alot more handy than just powder & load data.

Also, go & no-go gauges are about $25 a piece...If you have a switch-barrel, atleast buy the gauges. And if you plan on doing ANY re-chambering, reaming, or barrel work buy the friggin gauge. It will save you money in the long-run.
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