What do you look for in straight wall brass to make sure it's still usable?

What do you look for in straight wall brass to make sure it's still usable?

This is a discussion on What do you look for in straight wall brass to make sure it's still usable? within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; Since there doesn't seem to be an exact science to how often you can reuse straight walled pistol brass... What signs to you look for ...

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Thread: What do you look for in straight wall brass to make sure it's still usable?

  1. #1
    Member Array ChrisATX's Avatar
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    What do you look for in straight wall brass to make sure it's still usable?

    Since there doesn't seem to be an exact science to how often you can reuse straight walled pistol brass...

    What signs to you look for that make you discard a case? When do you look, before or after resizing?
    Home cooked always tastes better.


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    Depends...... revolver, I will reload a couple times, I make sure to keep it together and know how many reloads are on it
    pistol: since it gets beat up in the extraction/ejection smashing into the dirt process, I clean it up and inspect each piece every time. I look at the mouth for splitting or stretching. If the walls get excessively dented. I look at the case head for those signs as well.

    I will toss it out if in doubt
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    My experience has been with splits around the case mouths being the first signs of failure. Occasionally I have seen rim damage caused by extractors on semi-autos but not that often.
    dukalmighty and dangerranger like this.
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    Distinguished Member Array coffeecup's Avatar
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    A split case is reason for rejection.

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    My experience is straight-wall cases spit at the mouth when its life span is done. You can help avoid this by inspecting the mouth for nicks and cuts, chamfering as needed to remove them. Eventually they be come too brittle and will spit anyhow.
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    Member Array Aquaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldVet View Post
    My experience is straight-wall cases spit at the mouth when its life span is done. You can help avoid this by inspecting the mouth for nicks and cuts, chamfering as needed to remove them. Eventually they be come too brittle and will spit anyhow.
    Agreed, I'm a little anal when it comes to reloading, although I do use a progressive loader for speed, I hand check every round.

    My method is after about 50 rounds, I remove the catch bin and pinch every round between index finger and thumb, if the bullet moves it usually is because there is a split in the case, as I pass it from one hand to the other it get a visual inspection and with the other hand it gets dropped into a case gauge, It really is pretty fast once you get the hang of it. You can still reload a couple hundered in an hour easily while making sure you have good quality ammo.

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    Member Array agalindo's Avatar
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    Splits at the mouth or anywhere in the body.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aquaman View Post
    Agreed, I'm a little anal when it comes to reloading, although I do use a progressive loader for speed, I hand check every round.

    My method is after about 50 rounds, I remove the catch bin and pinch every round between index finger and thumb, if the bullet moves it usually is because there is a split in the case, as I pass it from one hand to the other it get a visual inspection and with the other hand it gets dropped into a case gauge, It really is pretty fast once you get the hang of it. You can still reload a couple hundered in an hour easily while making sure you have good quality ammo.
    Huh if it's that loose you could see the split in the case,after crimping my bullets don't move
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    Member Array ChrisATX's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone, you guys are the best!!
    Home cooked always tastes better.

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    I had a load for my 44mag that would cause separation at the head. When I ejected them the head would pop right off! PITA getting the rest of the case out of the cylinder. I would look for a slight distortion around the case.

    This was a competition load so I would only load twice at that load then move those cases into the practice pile.

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    Distinguished Member Array dangerranger's Avatar
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    As above I look for splits and ragged edges at the mouth. About every 10 reloads I anneal the case mouths. [ 45 colt brass is not cheap!] Brass that's been reloaded multiple times only get used as practice rounds. [ low speed, low bullet weight, low power.] But I have some brass that has been reloaded more than 20 times. DR
    CWOUSCG likes this.

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