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Thread: New cases question

  1. #1

    New cases question

    My 308W Lapua cases have done me for about 5 years now but I had one split a neck yesterday at the range and am figuring that they are probably nearing the end of their life. The way I see it is if one has split a neck then the others will not be too far behind and I don't think they owe me anything. I don't have a detailed record but guess some must be near to 20 firings while others probably only have a few firings on them.

    I have 100 new Lapua cases sitting ready to go and as I don't have any clear idea of which of the old cases have loads of firings and which have a few I've decided to replace the lot over the next while.

    In real world practical terms is it necessary to reduce the load and work back up with the new batch of cases or is it sufficient to load a few to my standard load and fire them checking carefully for signs of pressure? I really, really don't want to have to play at working up loads again if I can avoid it.

  2. #2
    Technically, if the cases aren't from the same lot, yes. You should reduce the load and work up again. In that real world you mentioned, you might ask yourself if the load was hot to begin with, or if there was any issues with the load that caused you concerns along those lines. If you are happy with those answers you could load a couple and test them out. If all is well.....

    It's your call.~Muir

  3. #3
    Keeping track of the number of times a case has been fired is hard work. I have developed the attached labels.

    I also use Federal plastic clips and scribble on them with a marker pen to try and keep track of which vintage of brass I am abusing.

    Regards JCS
    Last edited by jcampbellsmith; 06-02-2011 at 17:18. Reason: formatting

  4. #4
    I've no signs of pressure and good long case life Muir so I suspect I will follow your suggestion and load one up and shoot it and study the results carefully. If all looks good then maybe I will load 3 up and shoot a group and watch them carefully in the process.

    I'm with you JCS but there is just no way I'm going to keep a good track on my cases, even if I do as above then I will have 4 cases that have been once fired. If all the results are satis then I will probably load up 20 for my stalking and it is likely I will reload the 4 I started with so already I will be heading for having some twice fired and some fired only once :-)

  5. #5
    caorach

    I checked in the cupboard just now, I have once fired, twice fired, 4, 5 and 6 times fired cases in separate boxes. I fired four shots this morning, these cases are just about to go in the twice fired box. Once I get enough of a specific vintage, I resize them.

    Regards JCS

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by caorach View Post
    My 308W Lapua cases have done me for about 5 years now but I had one split a neck yesterday at the range and am figuring that they are probably nearing the end of their life. The way I see it is if one has split a neck then the others will not be too far behind and I don't think they owe me anything. I don't have a detailed record but guess some must be near to 20 firings while others probably only have a few firings on them.

    I have 100 new Lapua cases sitting ready to go and as I don't have any clear idea of which of the old cases have loads of firings and which have a few I've decided to replace the lot over the next while.

    In real world practical terms is it necessary to reduce the load and work back up with the new batch of cases or is it sufficient to load a few to my standard load and fire them checking carefully for signs of pressure? I really, really don't want to have to play at working up loads again if I can avoid it.
    I don't think I would start to work the load up again.

    I like you use Lapua in my rifle and I have only ever neck sized my cases. When I get one split I will change them all. I will load a few with my normal load, check em for pressure signs and accuracy and if all is ok I will load em all up the same and carry on as normal.

  7. #7
    Well i just carry on as normal make a small batch up check for accuracy etc then load the rest up !!!
    I also keep seperate boxes for each calibre clearly marked up for times fired i generally get to about nine reloads before i scrap them !
    On another point when i change bullet makes i use the same load data as long as bullet weights are the same and it seems to make no difference to accuracy !

  8. #8
    Philip, just to add to your normal levels of OCD you could just anneal the cases?

    Given the wet weekend we had here, I did a massive case prep session over the weekend. I am mainly using Lapua 243 with some Norma 243 brass in the 260. These cases have had 3 or 4 loadings each, I have not bother to trim the length until now. Funnily the Norma brass nearly all needed trimmed, but there was nothing to take off the Lapua brass. I found one case out off about 150 with a cracked neck.

    I do cull cases once I feel the primer seats with too little resistance. Any case that the primer just slips into gets segregated and marked. These are binned after the next firing.
    Brian.

    Just because you are paranoid, doesn't mean they aren't out to get you......

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Claret_Dabbler View Post
    Philip, just to add to your normal levels of OCD you could just anneal the cases?

    Given the wet weekend we had here, I did a massive case prep session over the weekend. I am mainly using Lapua 243 with some Norma 243 brass in the 260. These cases have had 3 or 4 loadings each, I have not bother to trim the length until now. Funnily the Norma brass nearly all needed trimmed, but there was nothing to take off the Lapua brass. I found one case out off about 150 with a cracked neck.

    I do cull cases once I feel the primer seats with too little resistance. Any case that the primer just slips into gets segregated and marked. These are binned after the next firing.
    It comes with being an engineer - I can't leave it alone until I've measured it and then broken it in an attempt to figure out how it works. At that point I post on here to see if anyone can fix it for me :-)

    The old Lapua cases are very old indeed and I did all my reloading learning with them so they were subject to some considerable degree of abuse, to say the least. I think I will move my Partition load to the new cases and leave my Hornady spire poiint load on the old cases in the mean time.

    Following your advice I loaded the partitions up at different lengths. I can't come close to the lands as my COL to the lands with the partitions is going to be about 2.905 and the absolute max my mag will take is 2.850. Anyhow, I loaded 3 batchs of 3 at 2.800, 2.780 and 2.760 and didn't notice much difference between them but thought that maybe the 2.760 load shot a shade better. It must be said that I wasn't shooting well on the day so am going to try the 2.760 load in the new cases the next time I get the chance.

    I've heard it said that Norma brass can be a bit soft so maybe that is why they are growing more than the Lapua. I put all of mine over the Lee trimmer everytime I load them and have found that some grow and some don't even with the same load in the same cases. I feel my OCD kicking in again!

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