Annealing timing question

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by bob4, Aug 12, 2018.

  1. bob4

    bob4 Well-Known Member

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    I guess my question is: 1. When do you decide it's time to anneal or do you just fire it "X" amount of times and anneal because you think you should ? 2. Is it possible for some pieces brass of the same batch to harden quicker than others? ( I suppose anything is possible)
    I have some Hornady 300 WM brass. Not loaded to extremes. With just a bit of time behind me I have noticed some seat easier than others ( same bullet). The difference is slight but it can be felt. I'm using forester dies set for .002 tension. This brass all has been fired 4 times and a annealing machine is on the way. My process is not as stringent as some and more than others. I de-prime resize, media tumble and trim, .002 out of trim and I'm on it. I chamfer only when brass is new or gets trimmed. I've not used graphite powder yet although I bought some from the local hardware to try. My cleaning process seems to leave carbon in the necks that I've read helps make for consistency. So I put my stainless pin cleaner away.
    I've also noticed at times the upstroke of the handle on the Blue machine has some bounce back of few pieces during the upstroke during resizing. As if the brass was springing back or has hardened and has memory. Or maybe I'm just imagining that.
     
  2. L.Sherm

    L.Sherm Well-Known Member LRH Team Member

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    I'd say it's time to anneal. I anneal new brass first before I do anything no matter what brand.
     
  3. DUSTY NOGGIN

    DUSTY NOGGIN Well-Known Member

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    I would do all normal prep including cleaning with the pins and full bump sizing , expander mandrel, then neck turning . Then, annealing, ... then bushing size to match the turn measurement leaving -.003 inner diameter, seat with that graphite dry lube .
     
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  4. bob4

    bob4 Well-Known Member

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    Neck turning for hunting seems a bit much. Of course when I started I thought annealing was a bit much. Maybe someday.
     
  5. hunterbob

    hunterbob Well-Known Member

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    I've done annealing on 308 casings ,,,, after 4 reloads on them. They harden up from the resizing die , but to me its not worth the time because brass doesn't last that long ...especially with hot loads......
     
  6. dok7mm

    dok7mm Well-Known Member

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    I anneal after each firing on some and after 2-3 firings on others, let the target tell you when.

    I FL size only and try to use dies that only reduce fired case dimensions by .002-003", at shoulder and above web. This, somewhat reduces work hardening. Use the same amount of lube on each case and same stroke on press. I hold case in die for 5 seconds, as the dwell makes for consistency.

    I lightly brush necks, apply Dry Imperial with a Q-tip and run a .002" under caliber mandrel to set my neck tension, holding a 5 second dwell. My seating on every case is butter smooth and I have very low SD & ES. I've been using mandrels for 7-8 years to sweeten neck tension for standard & bushing FL dies, couldn't be without them.
     
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  7. ShtrRdy

    ShtrRdy Well-Known Member

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    When you guys talk about dry lube or graphite dry lube, is that the stuff you can buy at a hardware store in a little tube?
     
  8. L.Sherm

    L.Sherm Well-Known Member LRH Team Member

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    I use the imperial graphite dry lube.
     
  9. dok7mm

    dok7mm Well-Known Member

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    FWIW....... I found a Forester FL 300wm die that minimally sizes my brass. I pulled the expander stem out of it and used it as a body die. Ran some fired brass thru it.........perfect .002 reduction. The kicker was it also sized the neck down to .305" I.D. or .003 interference fit. Just had to expand it up .001". Worked much better than my Redding body die, for $20.00 on closeout.
     
  10. kiwikid

    kiwikid Well-Known Member

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    Bob4, this site has all the info you are looking for. https://www.ampannealing.com/index/
    They recommend doing all your case prep work then anneal followed by your sizing operation. They also recommend annealing after each firing.
     
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  11. DUSTY NOGGIN

    DUSTY NOGGIN Well-Known Member

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    i understand where you are coming from , if you ever get some spare cash , give it a try, you will be amazed at how bad some brass really is.

    depending on brass quality , neck wall thickness variations can be extreme
     
  12. Mikecr

    Mikecr Well-Known Member

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    With all things human we mutate to extremes. The problem with this is that best is usually a balance (not an extreme), as nothing in this realm is free.

    The useful function with annealing is normalizing energy levels in brass to consistency -through reduction of that energy. We don't remove all the energy (full anneal), but reduce it to useful (process anneal). That's a balance between hard and soft.

    The potential price in this is the reduction of energy, which manifests as lower neck tension. If load development in this condition leads to good enough results, then you gained benefit without detriment, but this is not predicted,, it's tested.
    Another potential price is in the effort itself. If you don't consistently anneal, correctly, then the function of it is compromised from the git-go.

    There is no predicting, nor credible suggestion that frequent annealing is the best action, without local testing.
     
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  13. bob4

    bob4 Well-Known Member

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    It's not so much the money but the time involved is what I'm thinking here. I've got time today. I'll look at some videos on the process.
     
  14. joseph singleton

    joseph singleton Well-Known Member LRH Team Member

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    That is a mouth full of info to chew on..Love this sight..
     
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