Load workup while fireforming

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Forester, Apr 30, 2008.

  1. Forester

    Forester Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone had much luck with working up loads while fireforming brass? I have 100 pieces of Lapua brass I want to fireform and I also have 50 each of 2 different Berger bullets I want to work loads up for.

    Specifically I would like to shoot a ladder with each bullet and the un-fireformed brass. How close would the results likely be to using fireformed brass? I seem to have my best luck by paying more attention to the Chrono when running a ladder than the target so I could just try to match the velocity with loads after the brass is fireformed.

    Should I just forget it and get in 100rds of practice while I fireform the brass over the course of a few range sessions?
     
  2. ss7mm

    ss7mm Writers Guild

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    To me personally, that would make about as much sense as doing all of the tests in one gun and then expecting them to work in another one.;)

    You don't say what the round/case/caliber is but the case volume in a pre-fireformed case is different from a fully formed case, and pressure is probably going to be very different because you typically fireform with a slightly reduced load. Then when you have the fireformed cases you are probably going to try and load to an increased pressure/velocity. Isn't the increase the reason for the larger case or are you just wanting to improve a case design and still shoot what would be the same ballistic load in the improved case?

    When I fireform cases I have fun and get in some long range practice but to each his own.gun) Then I use the newly formed cases and do the load workup.:)
     

  3. Forester

    Forester Well-Known Member

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    I gotcha...I sort of figured it was a waste of good bullets to try and work loads up while fireforming. I think I will stick some FMJ bullets in them and just practice on the 500 yard (as far as my range goes) steel.

    By the way, the gun is a fairly new Savage .308 Win. What I have worked up with Sierra MatchKings show the gun is a shooter...I have consistent 5 shot groups under 3/4 inch at 200 yards. Not bad for a $500 gun, and a Bushnell scope (3200 5-15x42). I bedded the action and opened the forearm up some and have been pretty pleased so far.
     
  4. Jimm

    Jimm Writers Guild

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    you can't go wrong with


    what Dick said !! Play with your rifle with the new unformed brass . Shoot rocks and whatever other legal targets you can get a whack at . One thing I like to do once my fireform velocities are known is to practice running the scope way out there in elevation ( using a laser range finder to find the " way out there " distance ) then coming back to 100 or 200 yds with my clicks and shooting a target there . This is great practice , not to mention a lot of fun .

    After you have fireformed your brass at least once to your rifles chamber then you can get more serious with your load workups .

    This is the way I do it , others may differ and their way may be better . !

    Jimmba
     
  5. 358sta

    358sta Well-Known Member

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    Fireforming Definition

    Forester - Are you fireforming brass into a new improved round - such as going from a 243 to a 243 Ack Imp or are you simply fireforming the brass to your chamber? If the former is the case, then what ss7mm stated is what I would suggest. But if the latter is true, and I think it is based on your comment about it being a 308 and fireforming Lapua (308) brass, then I don't see why you couldn't shoot a ladder as you fireform the brass to your chamber since the capacity before and after firing shouldn't change very much. I'm not sure if ss7mm or Jimm interperted your fireforming question correctly.
     
  6. Forester

    Forester Well-Known Member

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    I am just fireforming the brass to my chamber, same caliber. I decided to get in some always needed practice. I set the powder dump up and threw the charges and seated some A-Maxes I had most of a box of and won't likely use for anything because the Sierra's shoot better. The first 50 were very hard on the 500 yard steel:D...I think the next I am going to get some work in from the shooting sticks.

    Now if I could only work out a place to shoot more than 500gun)
     
  7. Jimm

    Jimm Writers Guild

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    forester ,

    It is a matter of how precise you want to be . A lot of benchresters will not bother to do load development untill the case has been formed to their chamber ( at least once ) . I understand you may not be a benchrest shooter but " minute of varmint" comes in all sizes . As I said , how precise do you want to be ? , or perhaps I should say " try to be " ?

    I try to load as accurately as possible even though I am not a "benchrest " shooter . Why ? because everything I can do to create a very small moa load will compensate for my personal shortcomings and varying conditions in the field .

    The longer you reload the more you know that , ..............you dont know !

    jimmba
     
  8. RockZ

    RockZ Well-Known Member

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    If you are not actually fireforming the brass to an improved or different dimensioned cartridge I think you should do initial load development with new brass.

    Why spend the time and waste money just shooting at random objects. The difference in new brass and once fired brass is not that dramatic.

    You will get an idea of how various loads work, what looks good and what doesn't.
    You can fine tune things with your once fired brass.