Sorting brass?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Libbylogger, Oct 11, 2019 at 1:29 PM.


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  1. Libbylogger

    Libbylogger New Member

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    I finally found some Winchester brass for my 7mmWSM. Barreled action is at PAC-Nor getting a new tube and brake put on. I weighed the first hundred pieces and found quite a wide assortment of weights per piece. I’m not sure what to do now, these are hard to come by. I’m trying to start out finding a load for my new barrel, cutting out culls in brass is my starting point. Where do I start culling? Here are the results of sorting. I should mention, it’s a hunting rifle. Obviously long range shots are going to be taken.
    221.0-221.9 = 1
    222.0-222.9 = 14
    223.0-223.9 = 33
    224.0-224.9 = 21
    225.0-225.9 = 12
    226.0-226.9 = 17
    227.0-227.9 = 2
     
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  2. crystalgayleguy

    crystalgayleguy Previously Glenn J Voth

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    I would just load and shoot
     
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  3. dfanonymous

    dfanonymous Well-Known Member

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    This is just me...and my experience is probably not a vast as some others in reloading specifically but I have been reloading for awhile...
    However, sorting brass by weight to me anyways is a waste of time... if you want to sort I would sort by volume of the case. Outside of that, don’t worry about it. Prep and load as normal and shoot.
     
  4. corsair4360

    corsair4360 Well-Known Member

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    I would respectfully disagree. Assuming the case external dimensions are the same or nearly so, the internal capacity of the case varies with the weight. I just went through this with my brothers 7mm Remington Magnum with over 13 grains difference between the cases (he bought the brass, etc for me to work with, not my choice of brass). I selected all within 2 grains, worked up a 1" hunting load at 100 yards for elk.
     
  5. MNbogboy

    MNbogboy Well-Known Member

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    If you have the time do an accurate volume sort of all of them. Some past studies showed only about an 80% correlation. Some better brands of brass ( ie; lapua, norma, Nosler) often come weight sorted to within a grain or two and their volumes correspond.
    I've done tests years ago on cheap Remington brass (30-06) with 6 grain variance in 50 ct. Volumes all over the place with light & heavy just the opposite of what was expected.
    In your case the volume check will give you peace of mind. Your testing will tell you what variance in volume you will accept in velocity difference.
    Marking each case near the case head with an electric etcher will help you keep track of them. Record weights & volumes separate. Refer to them to compare range & chronos results.
    My .02,
    Randy
     
  6. Barrelnut

    Barrelnut Well-Known Member

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    I would probably use the ones in red for final zero, drop verification and hunting. Then use the green ones to work up loads and plink.
    221.0-221.9 = 1
    222.0-222.9 = 14
    223.0-223.9 = 33
    224.0-224.9 = 21

    225.0-225.9 = 12
    226.0-226.9 = 17
    227.0-227.9 = 2
     
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  7. dfanonymous

    dfanonymous Well-Known Member

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    I think this is on the right track for what the OP is looking for.
     
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  8. Barrelnut

    Barrelnut Well-Known Member

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    I have tested weight vs volume sorting a few different times and found this to be very true. For me volume sorting added no benefit, so I no longer do it. I still weight sort though.
     
  9. dfanonymous

    dfanonymous Well-Known Member

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    I know. There’s been back and forth theories for years. To be honest, I don’t even worry about sorting anymore.

    Weight of the case could vary all over the map for some brands and some lots, BUT found that volumes were tight... why I no longer weigh cases.

    Obviously, I also did sort by weight and found that accuracy could be very poor (mixed lots but same brand)... all the same case weight but after measuring volume, found significant differences.

    So, hence the argument of measuring case volume directly. BUT if you use a case from the same lot, odds are very good, case volume within that lot will be consistent, especially with quality brass. Just don't assume same brand, different lot, will have the same case volume.

    I really think it’s so insignificant, and feel like annealing and neck tension require more energy and attention as tedious details are concerned
     
  10. del2les

    del2les Well-Known Member

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    Yea. I go with a +- 1 grain of the majority weight for my BR guns and when putting together extreme varmint rounds, but for larger game and larger cases for hunting rounds, I can go +- 2 grains without much difference.
     
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  11. MNbogboy

    MNbogboy Well-Known Member

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    As my eyes, ears and body are catching up with my age tight SDs and ES aren't quite as important to me as they were say 10 years ago. I still do weight sorting on marginal brass and random volume checks.
    In the past I have used outlier (heavy, less volume) cases for cold bore rounds where initial POI & velocity differed from subsequent rounds. At one time I developed my own formula of when to add or subtract a tenth grain of powder as the weight changed in the case.
    I have since realized that if by utilizing a small percentage of each brass lot but get the good results we are all looking for then weight sorting with desired field results are enough.
    "Shoot" sorting is the final brass sorting is the last step. By pre-marking the brass as mentioned earlier, good record keeping with shot calls may isolate "frequent fliers". Three strikes(fliers) and out even if weight /volume would not suggest it. My guess here is internal shape/changes can't be determined by weight or volume.
    I've learned bunches from these forums, more in the last 10 years than in the 44 years before that. Still load with my 51 year old Herter's press...lol
    Exchanging ideas and practices was never a luxury in the 60s thru the 80s, a lot of us learned by our own mistakes.
    Good thread
     
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  12. DUSTY NOGGIN

    DUSTY NOGGIN Well-Known Member

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    id turn the winchester necks ,deburr the inside of the the flash holes, uniform primer pockets ,, load up a velocity test with all of them to blow em out

    then, trim all to exactly the same length,

    then see where you are at with new weights again

    ** id bet you get better weight consistency just by de-burring the flash holes and evening all trim lengths ***
     
  13. JJMoody

    JJMoody Well-Known Member

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    Omitting the 1 low and 2 high, you’re just over 2% weight difference With 97% of your cases. If it’s me, I’d load and shoot.
     
  14. aushunter1

    aushunter1 Well-Known Member

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    It would be interesting to see all those weights run over a crony as well to see the actual SD & ES.

    And as others are eluding to as well, that is all useless if your not following through with being super pedantic in your case prep regime, choice of components & dies, reducing run out, getting consistent neck tension etc etc

    If all those different weights can still produce MOA ammo then that's all that matters imo.