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Old 05-16-2010, 07:29 PM   #1
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Default 12 Ga reloading question

I have a whole bunch of federal muli-purpose spent hulls. I was wondering if you could relod those even though they seem like they have a steel base? Would this be safe to do?

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Old 05-16-2010, 08:08 PM   #2
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Federal makes two different types of hulls. The one piece "Gold Medal" type hull is the only one worth loading. These have no pressed in base wad. Compare the look of the inside base of the hull to a Gold Medal hull. They are likely very different looking that will give you your answer.

All shotshell base metal is steel. They are just copper plated to prevent corrosion. Some of the "bargain" ammo uses chromed/nickled base metal.

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Old 05-17-2010, 02:57 PM   #3
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Federal makes two different types of hulls. The one piece "Gold Medal" type hull is the only one worth loading. These have no pressed in base wad. Compare the look of the inside base of the hull to a Gold Medal hull. They are likely very different looking that will give you your answer.

All shotshell base metal is steel. They are just copper plated to prevent corrosion. Some of the "bargain" ammo uses chromed/nickled base metal.
Not so--Higher end shotshells from Winchester (AA), Remington (STS), and Federal (GM) use a brass base--brass can be re-sized over and over without splitting--steel can split after a reload or two, and is much harder to resize. The Federal field loads use a paper type base vs plastic--they can be reloaded but only once or twice, and you need to check carefully that the base hasn't loosened. I've reloaded them for hunting where I know I'll shoot and throw away. The AA and STS's can be reloaded 10 times or more--usually the part that fails first is the crimp area, almost never the brass base.
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Old 05-17-2010, 06:51 PM   #4
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There was a time when brass was brass. I seriously doubt you will find any shotgun hulls that are all brass based. The steel is mild steel and resizes with out much difficulty. If you leave even the high end hulls exposed to high moisture, they will rust.
The steel is not the issue, it is the base wad that can become dislodged and stick in the barrel.

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Old 05-17-2010, 08:05 PM   #5
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Well, Remington disagrees with you (I just called)--they say their STS are still made with a brass base--I think if I called WW and Fed they'd say the same about their AAs and GMs. I've been reloading STS and AAs for 40 years and the base brass hasn't changed that I can tell--I thought I would recognize the difference in feel (I can tell the steel based shells such as Gun Club, etc) but want to call and check. Also from a bunch of online sources:

Remington STS, Premier and Gun Club cases can be loaded the same. Gun Club cases are injection molded in the
same manner as the STS and Premier cases are. They differ in the quality of the plastic and metal base material. Gun Club
cases are molded with a lesser grade of plastic, have a steel base rather than a more expensive brass base and 3 percent
antimony shot instead of 6 percent in order to allow Remington to be more competitive in the marketplace.


Maybe the guy that answered the phone was wrong, but I doubt it...

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Old 05-17-2010, 11:33 PM   #6
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I don't see the STS hulls very often, but I have discarded many rusted AA's, Fed Tactical Buck and #4 high "brass". The WW high brass has been steel for some time. The newer AA's use a different grade of plastic as well. They do not crimp as nicely as the older ones.

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Old 05-18-2010, 02:48 PM   #7
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I don't see the STS hulls very often, but I have discarded many rusted AA's, Fed Tactical Buck and #4 high "brass". The WW high brass has been steel for some time. The newer AA's use a different grade of plastic as well. They do not crimp as nicely as the older ones.
Could be--I only reload Rem STS now--stopped using AAs when they changed from compression formed to the new HS hull. Think I'll grab a magnet when I get home and see if I get any reaction from some of my old AAs and GMs laying around... I can still reload STSs at least 10 times--they've always been my favorites, even when they were the Rem/Peters Blue Magics. Of course with the price of lead shot now, it's almost cheaper to buy new shells than to reload!
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Old 05-18-2010, 04:47 PM   #8
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I used to load the RXP's and AA's exclusively. Now I load everything from low brass 1oz #8's to (my own cast) buckshot and slugs (in mostly Federal compression formed hulls).

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Old 05-18-2010, 06:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
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I used to load the RXP's and AA's exclusively. Now I load everything from low brass 1oz #8's to (my own cast) buckshot and slugs (in mostly Federal compression formed hulls).
Do you drop/cast your own lead #8s? If so I bow down to your superiority!
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Old 05-18-2010, 09:38 PM   #10
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I have a buddy that has a home shot maker. I am trying to talk him out of that little jewel.

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