Once Fired Brass Prep

ajkellerusmc

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Joined
Jan 15, 2019
Messages
120
Location
Arizona
Can some of You experienced shooters list Your brass prep procedure?

I have 3 cartridges I am working with ( .338 Lapua, .308 Win and 6.5 Creedmoor) and want to take my group sizes down to .250MOA or less. I have thus far only fired new brass loaded at home and factory ammunition with sub MOA results and only an occasional .250 and one .120 group. I would like to see your procedure for brass prepping for consistency to get my group sizes smaller. I have most of the tools and am currently looking at a neck turning fixture which I think is the last thing I need.

Your thoughts and experience would clear a ton of confusion for me.

I have the first step down with the sinclair decapping die! Lol
 

Bang4theBuck

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Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Messages
275
My procedure is this:
Take once fired cases and push primer out with recapping die and trim all brass to Saami min.
2. Put the brass through a wet tumbler to clean it.
3. I anneal it using a plumber's torch.
4. I use a ball end micrometer to measure the neck wall thickness of the once fired brass. I'm looking for the thinnest part of the wall across a 10-15 case sampling. I then neck turn all the brass down to that minimum. I never turn to less than .013" though. I use the expander die prior to actually sizing. Sometimes I have to neck size them down, then use the expander for consistent results.
5. Then I use a Lee Neck Collet die to put neck tension back where it belongs.
6. Then I use a redding body die to bump shoulder back .001"
7. Then I chamfer and debur.
8. Prime the case
9. Charge the case
10. Seat bullet.
 

Bang4theBuck

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Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Messages
275
I guess I have to clarify that point. If the once fired brass was fired in my chamber, I would resize (body die with .001" shoulder bump), and then trim. If the once fired brass didnt come from my chamber, I would trim it first, in most cases only because I had a bad experience with some long necks in once fired brass. I would trim to the middle of spec range. Got a little paranoia in that regard.

I prefer .0015 to .002" neck tension for.most of my rifles, more for AR types. I'm not a bench rest guy, and that seems to the the sweet spot for seating depth retention in the magazine while maintaining good accuracy.
 

cajun

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Joined
Dec 11, 2007
Messages
190
Starting with good brass makes a big difference. To get that level of consistency your going to need to pay attention to neck tension. Thats going to lead to turning necks and using a bushing die to get the exact tension on all your rounds. A hand seating die and an arbour press so you can tell when a bullet seats easier or harder and use for a sighter. A good way of measuring your powder charge. Your going to have to anneal the brass at some point or it all changes. And of course a rifle and a shooter capable of such and a load your rifle likes.
 

Pizzaman1

Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2019
Messages
19
Location
myrtle beach south carolina
My procedure is this:
Take once fired cases and push primer out with recapping die and trim all brass to Saami min.
2. Put the brass through a wet tumbler to clean it.
3. I anneal it using a plumber's torch.
4. I use a ball end micrometer to measure the neck wall thickness of the once fired brass. I'm looking for the thinnest part of the wall across a 10-15 case sampling. I then neck turn all the brass down to that minimum. I never turn to less than .013" though. I use the expander die prior to actually sizing. Sometimes I have to neck size them down, then use the expander for consistent results.
5. Then I use a Lee Neck Collet die to put neck tension back where it belongs.
6. Then I use a redding body die to bump shoulder back .001"
7. Then I chamfer and debur.
8. Prime the case
9. Charge the case
10. Seat bullet.
Why do you anneal after one firing?
 

milo-2

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Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
546
Location
Gillette, Wy
Why do you anneal after one firing?
I can't answer for bang, but I anneal every firing. Reloading is about repeatability, so annealing every firing becomes your baseline to work from.
When I first started annealing, it was apparent the 2nd firing was the most accurate, it doesn't need to be that way. Work around anomalies, or discrepancies.
 

Pizzaman1

Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2019
Messages
19
Location
myrtle beach south carolina
I can't answer for bang, but I anneal every firing. Reloading is about repeatability, so annealing every firing becomes your baseline to work from.
When I first started annealing, it was apparent the 2nd firing was the most accurate, it doesn't need to be that way. Work around anomalies, or discrepancies.
Thank You Milo! I wonder if the use of annealing after every firing weakens the metal?
 

milo-2

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Joined
May 1, 2011
Messages
546
Location
Gillette, Wy
Thank You Milo! I wonder if the use of annealing after every firing weakens the metal?
No doubt your neck treatment may need an adjustment. Some things in reloading are easy to work around, to me, this is one. But I run bushing dies, makes it simple.
 

Pete Callamaras

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Joined
Feb 15, 2019
Messages
268
Location
Florida Panhandle
Once-fired not my rifle: Decap, tumble, uniform primer pocket, deburr flash hole, measure neck, turn if not uniform, Full length resize, trim if needed followed by deburr and chamfer, prime, powder seat bullet go shoot.
Once-fired in my rifle, decap, tumble. uniform prime pocket, deburr flash hole, measure neck, turn if not uniform, resize with neck bushing for .002 tension, measure and trim if needed with deburr and chamfer, primer, powder seat bullet, go shoot.
Look at annealing after five reloads.
 

Bang4theBuck

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Messages
275
I anneal after every firing as a matter of consistency. It's one of those things that prolongs the life of the brass, and I dont see any downside to doing it everytime, so I do it every time. I have some 308 brass with 28 firings on them.
 

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