Annealing? How do YOU do it? How often?

selmerfan

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I just finished annealing a batch of 100 .350 Rem Mag cases and wondered "How do others do this and with what method?" Growing up, dad considered annealing kind of voodoo-ish. All I remember him doing was either dipping case necks in molten lead or setting cases up in a metal cake pan, putting water in up to the level of the case shoulder, then heating the case necks until they just started to change color and tipping them over into the water. I never really messed with it much until I was necking LC Match 7.62 brass down to .260 Remington specs. Then I decided I should learn to anneal after turning the necks. I found some good advice from John Barsness that has served me well when annealing. He recommends chucking a socket extension into a drill, putting a deep well socket slightly larger than case diameter on to turn the cases at a moderate pace and do it in a dark room, like very dark, and use a propane torch. Start the case rotating, bring the flame in on the bottom side of the case neck that is sticking out from the socket and heat it until you just start to see the brass barely change color and then pull the torch back. The socket serves as a heat sink and protects the rest of the case from the heat. I know there are machines out there that do this automatically, but I can't justify the expense of such a machine for the relatively small amount of annealing I do. How often do you anneal your brass and how frequently?
 
Bench Source annealer for me, timed initially per-case & caliber with heat paint, recorded and then annealed for every firing. Years & years ago (faced with less than perfect brass in a favourite caliber) I personally started annealing and also neck turning to bring consistency to my bullet seats and neck tensions. Group size decreased & accuracy increased (dramatically) plus brass life itself more than doubled too. Annealing is a no brainer for serious long range handloading, and is even more so when your calibers brass is of a lesser brand where consistency within the cases themselves is poor to begin with.

Brass imperfections can be corrected greatly, and even very poor brass be made to shoot extremely repeatably, but it takes an effort. I believe alot of the guys headaches with the LRM's that fills thread upon thread on this site with frustrations can probably be fixed up with heavy brass prep like I mention, but it's a topic almost on its own. Point is, if anyones read through those threads, the OP's topic here on annealing would be the first step in litigating those guys' frustrations with loading the LRM caliber.

Either way.. bench source, every firing, and strictly for repeatability load to load for me. Inconsistency is a killer in the LR game. Here's a picture of a half-batch of Lazzeroni Firebird 7mm I did this afternoon... freshly cleaned & annealed, they always look like a million bucks! Smile every time.
 

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I just finished annealing a batch of 100 .350 Rem Mag cases and wondered "How do others do this and with what method?" Growing up, dad considered annealing kind of voodoo-ish. All I remember him doing was either dipping case necks in molten lead or setting cases up in a metal cake pan, putting water in up to the level of the case shoulder, then heating the case necks until they just started to change color and tipping them over into the water. I never really messed with it much until I was necking LC Match 7.62 brass down to .260 Remington specs. Then I decided I should learn to anneal after turning the necks. I found some good advice from John Barsness that has served me well when annealing. He recommends chucking a socket extension into a drill, putting a deep well socket slightly larger than case diameter on to turn the cases at a moderate pace and do it in a dark room, like very dark, and use a propane torch. Start the case rotating, bring the flame in on the bottom side of the case neck that is sticking out from the socket and heat it until you just start to see the brass barely change color and then pull the torch back. The socket serves as a heat sink and protects the rest of the case from the heat. I know there are machines out there that do this automatically, but I can't justify the expense of such a machine for the relatively small amount of annealing I do. How often do you anneal your brass and how frequently?
I use the Amp annealer every time my brass is fired.
BC80F46D-2773-4BC8-8466-4E7AF6022DAB.jpeg
 
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