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Brass vs. Steel Cased Ammo – An Epic Torture Test
#11
brian;65042 Wrote:
Warpt762x39;64981 Wrote:Well reloading steel is possible, it's exceedingly difficult.

haven't noticed much of a difference between the two on the press.

Most steel cases use a different primer and have two flash holes which require a different depriming tool.
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#12
Warpt762x39;65046 Wrote:
brian;65042 Wrote:haven't noticed much of a difference between the two on the press.

Most steel cases use a different primer and have two flash holes which require a different depriming tool.

That would be berdan primers. ANd you would need to find berdan primers, apparently you cant use boxer primers in a berdan primed case.
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#13
Warpt762x39;65046 Wrote:
brian;65042 Wrote:haven't noticed much of a difference between the two on the press.

Most steel cases use a different primer and have two flash holes which require a different depriming tool.

i wouldn't stay most, more like some might.
the fabrication doesn't stop in the shop, that's what the field guys are for.
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#14
I shoot brass and steel no problems here

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morpheus6d9, proud to be a member of pa2a.org since Oct 2012.
[Image: display.png]
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#15
brian;65054 Wrote:
Warpt762x39;65046 Wrote:Most steel cases use a different primer and have two flash holes which require a different depriming tool.

i wouldn't stay most, more like some might.

Russian ammo uses Berdan primers. American made ammo uses Boxer primers.
Interdum feror cupidine partium magnarum Europae vincendarum
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#16
Warpt762x39;64981 Wrote:
Connal;64950 Wrote:It isn't that mine is to delicate. But I only reload brass.

Well reloading steel is possible, it's exceedingly difficult.

...

Will require more lubricant in the die, particularly if full-length resized. And requires a little more force. My O press would do it without much trouble, but I wouldn't try it repeatedly in a "C" press. Given the lower cost of surplus ammunition, it wasn't cost-effective except for experimental loads after about 1987-88 or so.

[Image: O_press.gif]
"O" press. Die is supported on two sides, resulting in better alignment but usually limited to slower production.

[Image: C_press.gif]
C press - better access through front but may flex under high stress, potentially allowing some die misalignment.

The primary concern is loss of coating (lacquer or copper wash) and priming. This coating helps alleviate seized or stuck cases in the chamber. It usually isn't an issue with brass cases since cartridge brass "snaps" back to a smaller size and is also a dissimilar metal. Steel is neither, and needs a parting compound.

bogey1;65052 Wrote:
Warpt762x39;65046 Wrote:Most steel cases use a different primer and have two flash holes which require a different depriming tool.

That would be berdan primers. ANd you would need to find berdan primers, apparently you cant use boxer primers in a berdan primed case.

[Image: BB_02.gif]

[Image: BB_04.gif]

Correct, Berdan primers are not only dimensionally different, but also require a central bearing surface to "buck" the firing pin that a boxer primed case lacks. Reloading berdan is very possible, I did it years ago with RWS berdan primers & a Lachmiller decapping tool. Hydraulic deprimers are less likely to damage cases, but are more complex and rare. Most of the hydraulic decappers I've seen were home-made (example).

[Image: Lachmiller.gif]
RCBS Lachmiller berdan decapping tool
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#17
Warpt762x39;65099 Wrote:
brian;65054 Wrote:i wouldn't stay most, more like some might.

Russian ammo uses Berdan primers. American made ammo uses Boxer primers.

once again, some not all.
i have a pile of wolf 223 that is boxer primed.
the fabrication doesn't stop in the shop, that's what the field guys are for.
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#18
I reloaded some steel case .223 a while back and the biggest problem I found was that a lot of the necks split with the first sizing. I'd guess I lost about 25%. I didn't even consider picking them up to try a second reloading but they did perform well in my Mini-14.
OK, I'll admit, the real reason I didn't pick them up was because I didn't feel like walking that far. That damn thing was really aggressive about ejecting.
I know I could have replaced the gas block but I never got around to it.
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#19
mauser;65228 Wrote:I reloaded some steel case .223 a while back and the biggest problem I found was that a lot of the necks split with the first sizing. I'd guess I lost about 25%. I didn't even consider picking them up to try a second reloading but they did perform well in my Mini-14.
OK, I'll admit, the real reason I didn't pick them up was because I didn't feel like walking that far. That damn thing was really aggressive about ejecting.
I know I could have replaced the gas block but I never got around to it.

The steel used is very soft but unlike brass, it's not very springy. When you fire a round, the pressure expands the case. Brass will spring back and remain pliable for reloading. The steel doesn't spring back nearly as much and becomes more brittle after you fire it. It's similar to what the Soviets used in their steel core ammo. I've seen 5.56mm 62gr penetrator rounds put big divots into a steel plate. Mild steel not armor plate. The exact same target shot with Soviet surplus 5.45mm steel core ammo barely loses paint. Not a dent on the target. Just a V shaped splash mark where the round turned sideways and smashed apart.
Interdum feror cupidine partium magnarum Europae vincendarum
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