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Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Iclimb, Dec 3, 2013.
Any advantage or disadvantage to reloading nickel?
Nickel is very hard. Only disadvantage is that continued use may cause wear in your sizer die. Otherwise, no difference.
Use a good lube and pad (not spray) and the die wear thing isn't bad, most won't use their dies enough to even notice any wear. I'm 3 rifles deep on my 7rem dies and I've been running some of my brass as nickel for all 3 rifles; the dies have no scratching/wear at all.
The biggest thing I see is that the load may be different with nickel's hardness and you'll have to re-prove your load in your nickel brass. Nickel doesn't tarnish like brass. Nickel is usually good for fewer reloading cycles as it is harder/ more brittle. I've had some 338 win case necks with nickel brass neck crack sitting on the shelf loaded.
It scratched my 300WSM die so u quit reloading nickel.
I don't recommend using nickel. It is hard on dies, very hard on trimmers, and I've been told it's less consistent in terms of spring back when sized. It takes longer to anneal, and is less consistent during annealing.
I can't think of any "pros" when it comes to nickel brass, just several "cons."
I had some nickel plated 243 win cases. When i first used them,I had to purchase 35 degree neck reamer. Before i had the neck reamer i was crushing cases.
I used to use Winchester nickel plate stuff in my 30-06 got a dozen or so load out of them before they were shot. It is definitely harder than just plain brass but It seemed to last longer with max loads. I would not hesitate to use them again.
Given a choice I stay away from nickel.I had a bad experience way back with a big lot of nickel plated 22 hornet brass.I finally gave it all away and never looked back.
I have 325 wsm and cracked necks at 3-4 reloads, done a dozen on my 340 with no cracks. Im tossing mine at 3 and replacing with quality brass
My self have 1 thousand nickel plated 308 cases all same number, got a good deal on them now maybe see why BUT still see some use in then.
I have used Win 270WSM cases, both nickel and brass. Results were identical except for case life. The nickel cases began to crack at 3-4 reloads with nickel, where the brass were good to 7-10 loads. Care does have to be taken using enough lube to prevent scratched dyes. I avoid them.
They scratched the hell out of one of my Lee Collet Neck Sizer mandrels when uniforming new case necks
Varmint Al's OPINION is a no go on nickel
Varmint Al's Handloading/Reloading Page
I'm a no-nickel guy. It "feels" too hard in the dies and on my trimmer. I have found for handgun brass it is manageable, but I really don't like it for bottleneck cases.