Let's talk case prep

Discussion in 'Reloading Forum (All Calibers)' started by Shooter13, May 15, 2019.

  1. Shooter13

    Shooter13 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Full length resizing case prep

    Discussion: How I do it.

    First after returning from the range I check the head spacing, after that I will lube and full length resize and de-prime in one step.

    Second, after I have resized I chamfer the mouth and neck then get the lube off by tumbling in media (walnut or corncob).

    Third, I prime the cases and get ready to reload.

    Can anyone add anything (constructive) to this list or should I change a procedure of doing it? What do you do that is different?

    I’ve been reloading for a while and this has been pretty successful but getting back into competitive shooting and want the best I can produce.

    Thanks all!

    Shooter13
     
  2. Lone Hunter

    Lone Hunter Silver $$ Contributor

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    Shooter, Google or use the search feature in the upper right hand corner of the page. Google Case Prep,Correct reloading steps,or reloading steps, etc.. It will bring up a lot of older and newer articles. Hope this will help.
     
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  3. Bc'z

    Bc'z Gold $$ Contributor

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    I would de-prime in a separate step after tumbling, and size in a separate operation.
    Using 1 shot will save re-tumbling.
    Or....
    Decap, size, prep pockets and necks, prime and load. No tumbling.
    I prefer the 1st scenario over 2nd.
    But the 2nd scenario saves time with no loss of accuracy.
    I just prefer pretty bullets!
     
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  4. RatRifle

    RatRifle

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    I would de-prime before I took any measurements as the fired primer will likely protrude a little from the case. Clean (wipe down outside of case) to keep the crud out of my dies.

    Jim
     
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  5. Damon555

    Damon555

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    Lube, resize, de-prime, re-prime, charge case, seat bullet and shoot............do that until the case gives up the ghost one way or another. Simple as that.

    I have done lots and lots of case prep over the years.....never realizing any appreciable gains I went back to the basics.....
     
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  6. Greyfox

    Greyfox Gold $$ Contributor

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    Depends on how much you get off on working with brass. There was a time when it was among my favorite things to do. Not so much anymore, just things that must be done. I deprime one case and get a headspace measurement. Depending on how many firings the brass has had, I might set up the rifle they were fired in with the firing pin assembly removed and chamber one case to see what the bolt fall looks like. After several firings this need to be done with every firing as the brass gets harder and the springback changes. I want the bolt to fall at least halfway and then I need to be able to close it with one finger. Most of my benchrest dies have a decapping pin. If they do I size and deprime in one pass. If not, I use a depriming die. Next I lube all the cases and size one at a time, wipe the case and clean the neck with steel wool, prime, fill and seat a bullet. I complete each case before moving to the next one. I might clean them in a tumbler once a year at best. Clean cases don't shoot any better than tarnished ones. I never chamfer after the first time. I check the OAL from time to time and usually need to trim maybe once per season. With proper fitting dies and minimum sizing they don't grow much at all. I never clean primer pockets. I make an effort to avoid useless work that does not promote accuracy.

    YMMV,
    Rick
     
  7. Shooter13

    Shooter13 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Already did, this is my standard course of action;-)
     
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  8. Howland

    Howland

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    I take fired brass, decap, inspect and tumble clean. If only fired a few times and I'm still not sure what the headspace is, I will measure that and record the longest measurement.

    Full length size & wipe the lube off, then another half hour in the tumbler to remove any residual lube. Again, if still trying to determine headspace, measure all. Full length sizing will "grow" the headspace measurement. My current project is .338LM with Lapua brass. Only after the third firing was I able to feel the additional resistance closing the bolt with the longest headspace measured cartridge. Now that the dies have that final adjustment, I will not measure headspace again.

    Again only after full length sizing due to that growth do I measure overall case length and trim if needed. It took two firings before I had to trim. I trimmed to .005" below maximum. After the third firing and first trimming I had 10% again over maximum. I don't want to trim every time or even every other time so I will now trim to .010" below maximum. I'll do .015" if I have to. I only chamfer and deburr if I had to trim.

    Prime, charge and seat.
     
  9. Texas10

    Texas10 Gold $$ Contributor

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    If competition is your goal, you might want to add an annealing step to prolong the life of your carefully prepared brass. There should also be a case trim step in your preparation, or at least a OAL check to verify.
     
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  10. Shooter13

    Shooter13 Gold $$ Contributor

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    I'm annealing after every 4 firings, case trim to begin the process of new brass and then check before annealing, forgot to put that in there. Thanks
     
  11. Shooter13

    Shooter13 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Hey Rick,
    Thanks, pretty brass is not my goal altho I don't mind looking at it clean ;-) but to remove the lube I find this to be the simplest step to take. Not camfering each time will be a huge time saver!
    Thanks
     
  12. MikeMcCasland

    MikeMcCasland Silver $$ Contributor

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    You're going to get 10,000 different answers to this question.

    My process:
    Deprime
    Wet Tumble
    Anneal
    Size in an FL bushing die
    dry tumble lube off
    trim/chamfer
    prime
    apply dry neck lube
    charge
    seat

    I suspect a more important question is what kind of dies are you using? How much are you working the brass?
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
  13. Shooter13

    Shooter13 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Using a Harrell's die, just getting back into shooting so the amount I'm working the brass is TBD, will update later.
     
  14. Shooter13

    Shooter13 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Do you anneal after each time?
     
  15. MikeMcCasland

    MikeMcCasland Silver $$ Contributor

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    Yep. I anneal/trim every single firing. I try to keep things as consistent as possible.
     
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  16. Hengehold

    Hengehold Silver $$ Contributor

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    Here is a great article in case you haven’t seen it

    https://www.accurateshooter.com/technical-articles/reloading/complete-precision-case-prep/

    I don’t chamfer every reload because there is no need for it.

    -T
     
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  17. Shooter13

    Shooter13 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Chamfering every round will not be something I miss! I do understand that it may/is needed after trimming.
     
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  18. Bc'z

    Bc'z Gold $$ Contributor

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    I still give it a lil touch up every time I prep.
    Especially when using flat base bullets.
     
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  19. Webster

    Webster

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    Check out this article on this website.

    https://www.accurateshooter.com/technical-articles/reloading/complete-precision-case-prep/
     
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  20. BartsBullets

    BartsBullets Gold $$ Contributor

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    Rick’s advice is excellent!

    Barr
     
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