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Getting The Most Outta My Brass...

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Old 08-10-2011, 07:11 PM   #1
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Default Getting The Most Outta My Brass...

Ive come across a good amount of once fired military .30-06 that I plan on making into 7.7 Japanese. It takes some work to do, so I want to know what I should do to make it last longer and generally get the most I can outta of it. Much of the info ive read has been off benchrest sites and wanted to see what you guys think......

Best way to fire-form brass?
Ive read everything from just using a reduced load, even cornmeal & wax, and cream of wheats & crisco? Ive read that the 7.7 Jap has a slightly different taper than the .30-06, and ive found the brass ive fired does better if its shot with a light load first after reforming, than if I load a "full" load the first time...

What about sizing? How often should I full length size opposed to just neck size? Does it really matter?

Last, What about annealing? How much does it really help with prolonging brass life? Is there a way for the layman to do it? Ive seen a machine that does it but it cost about $400... The other methods ive read about seem a bit questionable....
...... I suffer from a very rare genetic defect that causes me to be sympathetic toward the International cause. There is no cure.
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Old 08-10-2011, 09:47 PM   #2
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I'm not all that into reforming brass for different cartridges so I'm not sure about annealing, but once you've fire formed your casings one way to increase case life is to neck size instead of full length resizing, but when your reloads start going into the mag harder or chambering stiffly then full length size them and start over with neck sizing, unless I was reloading shotshells I wouldn't put anything but powder in my casings, trim your casings to the correct length every time you reload, and lighter loads can increase case life slightly. That's about all I can think of.
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Old 08-11-2011, 07:50 AM   #3
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Aneal before you start the forming process. Depending on how many steps involved in forming, you may want to aneal again after.

Anealing is easy. You need to heat the necks to cherry red to correct the work hardening. You must be careful to not aneal the base half of the case. I stand the cases in a pie pan of water about 1/2 inch deep. Using a propane torch, heat the neck til it glows red. Knock the case over in the water to quench (this does not "temper" the brass). Try to heat the neck evenly all the way around for best results.

I aneal all bottleneck rifle cases (except .223) after the first firing and every 4th firing or so. I routinely form 8 X 57 cases from .270 brass. I do not experience splits even when bumping hem up that much.
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Old 08-20-2011, 04:46 AM   #4
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GI brass is heavier, and therefore thicker when sizing her down, You may have to inside neck ream, or you may not. I would check it none the less, as I found on necking down 30-06 to 25-06 with my rifle, the GI cases had to be inside neck reamed to get proper bullet release. It isn't that much of a step down with the 7.7, but check it any way. When fire forming 30-06 to 30 Gibbs, I loaded a practice round of 180gr. cast with a moderate load of 4831, They were loaded a little long where it was kind of a crush fit when the bolt was turned down. Perfect formed cases with the tapper remover and the sharper shoulder moved forward leaving a 7.62X51 (308n Win.) neck length. Never lost a case using this method, and it was a good practice round at 2500 fps. Most of your case forming is down sizing, and just the opposite, so you should not have a problem. Most likely you will just have to check case length, make sure that neck thickness isn't excessive. Load them up and shoot.
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