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Old 01-11-2012, 12:47 PM   #1
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Default Soft primer pockets with Federal brass.

I use a lot of Federal brass for reloading, mostly for .308. I have noticed that the primer pockets in this brass seem to get soft after a few loadings and the primers are going in easier. Sometimes it takes almost no pressure to insert the primer in the pocket. I have been using Federal 210M primers. I have not noticed this happening with other brands of brass.

Have any of you ever experienced this with Federal brass? Should I be concerned about the primers staying in place?



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Old 01-11-2012, 12:55 PM   #2
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The only time I've ever experienced what you describe here is when I've loaded things up too hot. When I can see the imprint of the bolt face on my case head, the primer always slides in like a wet... Well, you get the idea. Different brass has different maximums. Try backing your loads off and see if that does the trick.



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Old 01-11-2012, 04:08 PM   #3
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I thought about this but I checked the fired cases closely and could not see any obvious signs of the loads being too hot. The primers were not cratered or deformed in any other way. We used a chronograph and the 168-grain bullet came out at a little over 2600 fps on the average. I wasn't experiencing the issue of soft primer pockets with Winchester or Remington brass, with the same load. The primers seemed to stay in the pocket well enough when fired.

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Old 01-11-2012, 05:45 PM   #4
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Some of the worst brass is remington. I find a lot of irregular flash holes and irregular primer pockets. So much so that i run all remington brass through my primer swager to at least get the pocket uniform. Doesnt fix the flash hole or varied depth but does make them easier to prime. I do segregate remington brass into plinking and getting on paper use.

Pmc brass also needs to be run through the swager.

It really depends on the quality control of the manufacturer. Thats why lapua is so costly.

As for charge weights and fps, even within given range a cartridge can still generate excess pressure from incorrect seating depth, suppressor use, or severely fouled bore or incorrectly sized brass.

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Old 01-11-2012, 07:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
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Some of the worst brass is remington. I find a lot of irregular flash holes and irregular primer pockets. So much so that i run all remington brass through my primer swager to at least get the pocket uniform. Doesnt fix the flash hole or varied depth but does make them easier to prime. I do segregate remington brass into plinking and getting on paper use.

Pmc brass also needs to be run through the swager.

It really depends on the quality control of the manufacturer. Thats why lapua is so costly.

As for charge weights and fps, even within given range a cartridge can still generate excess pressure from incorrect seating depth, suppressor use, or severely fouled bore or incorrectly sized brass.
I have experienced the same problems with Remington brass. The variables you mentioned as a possible cause of the problem can be ruled out in my case because I have taken great care to control them. The bores on my rifles are always meticulously maintained between firings. The bullet seating seating depth and powder charge comes right out of the applicable manual. I always carefully full-length size my brass.
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:20 PM   #6
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What i mean by incorrectly sized is incorrect headspace. Only way to really tell for sure is with a head space gage for your caliber. Bottleneck cases are the ones that this can be an true issue. Signs of overlong shoulder length are difficult to extract live rounds or dummy sized empties.

But in your case i would lean towards iffy brass.

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Old 01-12-2012, 01:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
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What i mean by incorrectly sized is incorrect headspace. Only way to really tell for sure is with a head space gage for your caliber. Bottleneck cases are the ones that this can be an true issue. Signs of overlong shoulder length are difficult to extract live rounds or dummy sized empties.

But in your case i would lean towards iffy brass.
Okay, I understand. Dealing with headspace issues properly is probably beyond my gunsmith skills. I think I am dealing with some iffy brass. I have also noticed that the Remington primers seem to fit looser. I usually use the Federal 210M primers but bought some different brands when these were not available. I figure that the iffy brass is good for practice loads. When I try serious shooting I have some Lapua brass I use.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:02 PM   #8
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Some of the newer Federal rifle brass seems to be made differently. It is almost like they have outsoursed the brass to Pakistan. Why are you using magnum primers in a .308? The only reason I would do so is if I was shooting ball powder in frigid temps.

I have gotten multiple loadings from newer Federal brass in .308, .30-06, .223 and .270. I use Winchester LR primers.

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Old 01-12-2012, 05:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Some of the newer Federal rifle brass seems to be made differently. It is almost like they have outsoursed the brass to Pakistan. Why are you using magnum primers in a .308? The only reason I would do so is if I was shooting ball powder in frigid temps.

I have gotten multiple loadings from newer Federal brass in .308, .30-06, .223 and .270. I use Winchester LR primers.
The federal 210M is not a magnum primer. The "M" stands for match. Federal also makes the 215MB, which is the match primer in large rifle magnum.
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:43 PM   #10
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That's right. Forgot about the match part.



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