Reloading .40 S&W case life?

Reloading .40 S&W case life?

This is a discussion on Reloading .40 S&W case life? within the Reloading forums, part of the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics category; I'm reloading for my BHP .40 S&W, practice ammunition. I load it to standard power specifications or just slightly less. Since this is a high ...

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Thread: Reloading .40 S&W case life?

  1. #1
    Member Array Velocette's Avatar
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    Reloading .40 S&W case life?

    I'm reloading for my BHP .40 S&W, practice ammunition. I load it to standard power specifications or just slightly less. Since this is a high pressure round, I understand it will be hard on the brass. How many times is it reasonable to reload these little cases before I should discard them before a kaboom might come my way?

    TIA Roger


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array Bud White's Avatar
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    hard to say your going to just have to look and check the brass

    i would start a lot you know you can keep as in shooting not at the range or alone at the range so you can reclaim

    Then coat the end of the brass with say a sharpie marker and reload it a few times and find out

    watch for the case to separate at just in front of the extractor channel

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    First off - I don't use .40!

    However ....... I think for all practical purposes we can compare with 9mm - also a high pressure round. IMO if sizing, flare and crimp are not overdone then you should see a good lifespan. I reckon excessive flare is the real killer, as crimp is just taper and not roll - but I have BTW had up to 20 reloads with 38 spl light loads where some roll crimp is needed and also flare has to be adequate to fit lead bullets without shaving. Low pressure there I know.

    Bottom line is work hardening effects and so ultimately a split on case mouth which is the end of a its life. Better remember too I guess any bulge aspects due to unsupported areas at base - this could in itself be problematic but probably not so much at all with sub max loads. Hot loads could see case sep' troubles as Bud mentions.

    I'd be surprised if you can't get good brass into double digits and well beyond with some care.
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    I get about 3-5 reloads out of .40 brass. also check it carefully for any imperfections.
    "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson


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    Member Array Velocette's Avatar
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    Thank you gentlemen, I will extend my current 2 reloadings per case to 5 and continue to carefully inspect before reloading.

    Roger

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    I havent had any problems with it. I just shoot them till they crack or the primer falls out, but that is with fairly mild loads using cast lead bullets.

    I tumble all of my brass and inspect them when they are bright...it makes it easier to look for imperfections.
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  7. #7
    Distinguished Member Array lowflyer's Avatar
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    I don't do .40 small & weak (j/k) either, but I also don't count reloads on pistol brass. I just throw out cases that are damaged.
    Whatever doesn't kill you postpones the inevitable.

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