Steel cased ammo
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Old 04-26-2014, 07:32 PM   #1
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Default Steel cased ammo

Just got my Ruger SR1911 and haven't taken it to the range yet. I was strolling by the ammo section of Walmart and saw that steel is going for around $15 a box (of 50) while brass is going anywhere from $21-$25 a box (of 50). I heard steel is rough on your internals and dirty and stuff. Really is it that bad? Seems like it would be worse in my AR than my 1911 considering the abuse i have seen 1911's go through. What are your opinions?
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Old 04-26-2014, 07:40 PM   #2
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The casing will cause no more wear than a brass case, but the projectile has a bi-metal jacket, therefore it's harder. The harder surface will slightly accelerate barrel wear, slightly.

The biggest myth about steel cased ammo is the lacquer or poly coating melting and gumming the chamber, it simply doesn't get hot enough to do so and even if it did the round would have to set in the chamber for awhile for it to happen.

Because of the different properties of brass and steel, they don't cool and contract at the same rate so some guns don't like it, generally it's casings with straighter walls that have an issue but sometimes they don't.

Try it out, if it works well, go for it.
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Last edited by sputnik1988; 04-26-2014 at 07:46 PM.
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Old 04-26-2014, 07:57 PM   #3
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I shoot a lot of steel because its affordable, you would have to be a very prolific shooter to ever notice any wear associated with using steel cased ammo.
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Old 04-26-2014, 08:39 PM   #4
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some pistols do have problems with steel cased ammo and some don't. the only way to know is to try it out. if you have problems try out different ammo before condemning the gun though. if it has problems with different types of ammo, then look at possible problems with the magazines first.

personally i have shot very little steel cased ammo because i reload, so i buy brass cased for the cases.
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Old 04-26-2014, 08:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bronco141414 View Post
Just got my Ruger SR1911 and haven't taken it to the range yet. I was strolling by the ammo section of Walmart and saw that steel is going for around $15 a box (of 50) while brass is going anywhere from $21-$25 a box (of 50). I heard steel is rough on your internals and dirty and stuff. Really is it that bad? Seems like it would be worse in my AR than my 1911 considering the abuse i have seen 1911's go through. What are your opinions?
I JUST got the Ruger sr 1911 yesterday and ran a box of steel ammo through it and it ran flawlessly. If it works, go for it. Good luck and happy shooting.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:30 PM   #6
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Wolf, WPA, etc. Is no dirtier than Winchester white box.

I advocate that no one except me shoot steel case, maybe the price would come back to 6 to 8 bucks per box then.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:43 PM   #7
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I have seen where steel cased ammo gave a pistol a hard time with ejection due to excessive heat. Two guys were sharing a Walther PP. They would give the pistol a little rest, and it would start functioning again.

I gave them some brass cased ammo, and things worked like a champ.

The powder used is what creates the above normal dirt, not the casing.

Have I noticed any accelerated wear on my guns? Compared to when I was using it for competition, no.
I would be okay to use it for break in or range practice, but not for EDC.

And it is not recommended to reload steel cases. Another reason I prefer brass.
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Old 04-27-2014, 12:42 AM   #8
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Steel cased ammo is made from a soft steel which allows it to expand, but not quite as much as brass, which is why it is a bit dirtier. It is not hard enough to damage the barrel or even the extractor. The feed issue is usually related to the rim specs being slightly different than brass cases which an extractor may not grab consistently.

The heat and lacquer issues is something that has been problematic with rifles where barrel heat is generally higher than handguns. Ammo manufacturers have developed better ammo and the lacquer issues are more a thing of the past. So if you have surplus ammo, you should clean the barrel after shooting a couple hundred rounds.

I shoot steel cased in 9MM and 45 ACP and have not had any problems in 1911s, Glock and Sig Sauer pistols. I also shoot steel cased ammo in my AR. However, my Bersa Thunder 380 did not like steel ( or even aluminum) cased ammo.
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Old 04-27-2014, 01:04 AM   #9
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None of my guns are as accurate with steel as they are with brass cased ammo. Many times steel case ammo is accurate enough. I shoot steel case ammo in my 91/30. I only need to be confident I can hit the deer in the neck. I don't care if I can shoot the buttons off superman's cape.
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Old 04-27-2014, 01:07 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John_Deer View Post
None of my guns are as accurate with steel as they are with brass cased ammo. Many times steel case ammo is accurate enough. I shoot steel case ammo in my 91/30. I only need to be confident I can hit the deer in the neck. I don't care if I can shoot the buttons off superman's cape.
Generally that has more to do with inconsistent loads (cheap ammo)
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