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Thread: Militery brass consistency

  1. #1

    Militery brass consistency

    I had a day off yesterday during which i waited for a plumber to come and give me an estimate for some work i need done. While sitting there I thought I'd sort some Lake City military brass -weeding out the scarred and badly dinged cases- to use in my new Ruger Precision Rifle. Digging around in the brass bins i found a sealed 2 gallon bucket with once fired, deprimed and polished Lake City brass from three different production years. Nice stuff! So shiny it hurt my eyes! I was struck by an idea. I went into the reloading Lab and brought out a digital scale and proceeded to weigh all the cases, setting each different weight into a separate plastic bin. I weighed all two gallons of brass. Normally I never weigh cases but I had time to kill. The results were startling.

    Over the entire span, and discounting 2 cases that were outliers, I had just a 4 grain spread. If you can assume that they all started out with equal external dimensions, that would mean that the internal case capacity adjustment would equal just .3 grains of powder between cases at opposite ends of the weight spectrum. That's not too bad. Probably why I have gotten such fine accuracy using these cases over the years without worrying about the actual capacity of a case and just sorting by headstamp year of production.

    The plumber never showed but I got 200+ cases of 'identical' weight to load in my RPR, with bags full of other weighed cases waiting. Stupid way to spend a morning but interesting use of it.~Muir

    PS: Did I really spell 'military' with an e instead of an a?? Knot enuff coffey
    Last edited by Muir; 12-09-2015 at 13:29.

  2. #2
    I think your new rifle deserves a little pendency - immense load work-up satisfaction heading your way, brother
    For Gods sake - don't tell her how much I've spent

    Ctrl-Alt FACT

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Hereford View Post
    I think your new rifle deserves a little pendency - immense load work-up satisfaction heading your way, brother
    Yup! Picked up 400 168 A-Max on sale Thursday night. ~Muir

  4. #4
    fine brass that if perhaps a little tough!

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Muir View Post
    I had a day off yesterday during which i waited for a plumber to come and give me an estimate for some work i need done. While sitting there I thought I'd sort some Lake City military brass -weeding out the scarred and badly dinged cases- to use in my new Ruger Precision Rifle. Digging around in the brass bins i found a sealed 2 gallon bucket with once fired, deprimed and polished Lake City brass from three different production years. Nice stuff! So shiny it hurt my eyes! I was struck by an idea. I went into the reloading Lab and brought out a digital scale and proceeded to weigh all the cases, setting each different weight into a separate plastic bin. I weighed all two gallons of brass. Normally I never weigh cases but I had time to kill. The results were startling.

    Over the entire span, and discounting 2 cases that were outliers, I had just a 4 grain spread. If you can assume that they all started out with equal external dimensions, that would mean that the internal case capacity adjustment would equal just .3 grains of powder between cases at opposite ends of the weight spectrum. That's not too bad. Probably why I have gotten such fine accuracy using these cases over the years without worrying about the actual capacity of a case and just sorting by headstamp year of production.

    The plumber never showed but I got 200+ cases of 'identical' weight to load in my RPR, with bags full of other weighed cases waiting. Stupid way to spend a morning but interesting use of it.~Muir

    PS: Did I really spell 'military' with an e instead of an a?? Knot enuff coffey
    Yup,you did. But we will let you off but only because your posts are normally interesting and informative. Not your fault that yanks can't spell.

  6. #6
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    True military rifle ammunition (not rubbish HXP for example) has always been well made to the nth degree of quality. The reason is overhead fire where machine guns would be fired over the heads of one's own infantry. The last thing wanted is ammunition of inconsistent velocity that then risks hitting one's own troops.

    Compare South African PMP .303, true military ammunition with rubbish HXP .303 made for purely cadet use on targets. Like chalk and cheese. PMP was superb. HXP was just adequate. PMP would shoot 1"at 100yards whereas in the same rifle HXP would shoot 2"or 3".

    I am not at all surprised that Lake City was good. Wasn't this the stuff, in 30-06, the headstamp that US Army and USMC snipers and sharpshooters favoured over all other headstamps?

  7. #7
    I just did the same thing with ggg brass very close on weight and excellent quality , a lot like norma .
    "This year will go down in history. For the first time, a civilized nation has full gun registration. Our streets will be safer, our police more efficient, and the world will follow our lead into the future!"
    Adolph Hitler 1933

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by cambsman View Post
    Yup,you did. But we will let you off but only because your posts are normally interesting and informative. Not your fault that yanks can't spell.
    You're too kind.
    My family's from Scotland so I always just figured it was...you know... genetic.~Muir

  9. #9
    The cadets will be using our range this week and they usually leave a couple of hundred ex military 5.56 cases in the scrap bin. I mentioned this to my friend on Friday evening and he said he was going to beat the old skipdiver meaning me to it this time as he usually gets to the range first. I think I will pop in and empty the bins on Wednesday evening and beat him to it.

    In reality we normally share the RG cases and batch them according to date on headstamp. Never bothered weighing them though as it doesn't warrant it for the limited ranges that we shoot at (maximum of 250-300). A bit of cleaning and prepping including removing the primer crimp and away we go. I use them in my .223 and my friend converts them to .17 fireball. He finds that some batches more readily convert than others.

    He's going to be a bit miffed when he arrives at the range to find the bins have already been emptied.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by 8x57 View Post
    The cadets will be using our range this week and they usually leave a couple of hundred ex military 5.56 cases in the scrap bin. I mentioned this to my friend on Friday evening and he said he was going to beat the old skipdiver meaning me to it this time as he usually gets to the range first. I think I will pop in and empty the bins on Wednesday evening and beat him to it.

    In reality we normally share the RG cases and batch them according to date on headstamp. Never bothered weighing them though as it doesn't warrant it for the limited ranges that we shoot at (maximum of 250-300). A bit of cleaning and prepping including removing the primer crimp and away we go. I use them in my .223 and my friend converts them to .17 fireball. He finds that some batches more readily convert than others.

    He's going to be a bit miffed when he arrives at the range to find the bins have already been emptied.
    The Bureau of Indian Affairs used our club range for free because on their "qualification" day they will leave 20+ pounds of .223 brass of the same LOT, as well as heaps of 9mm and 40 cal pistol casings. It was a good arrangement until one of those greedy b@stards took up reloading! Now they police their brass. And so now get a bill for Range Use as well!

    I don't normally sort brass except for year of manufacture and I never weigh brass. This was just out of curiosity.~Muir

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