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Thread: Could you check headspace with an unfired/pulled case?

  1. #1

    Could you check headspace with an unfired/pulled case?

    I was just thinking could you check headspace and the suitability of certain ammo to your rifle using the method in this video but instead of stripping the bolt and using a live round, could you pull the head from a live round and use the unfired brass instead?

    You need to watch the short vid but basically he puts layers of masking tape on the primer end until any play has been taken up in the bolt movement, then meaures the thickness of the layers of tape to give the headspace in thou's,

    Cheers

    Stratts

    http://www.americangunsmith.com/vidlesson/?id=36d
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  2. #2
    Tape would not give a totally accurate measurement

  3. #3
    been doing this for years with no problem

    Deershooter

  4. #4
    It is a standard method, also used when cutting a chamber in new barrel. By adding a single layer of tape to a "go" gauge you can turn it into a much tighter "no-go" gauge so work to minimum tolerances.

    See here:

    As I said on the other thread, Scotch magic tape is ideal for this.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by bewsher500 View Post
    Tape would not give a totally accurate measurement
    ​Better than no measurement at-all, which seems to be the current situation.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by stratts View Post
    instead of stripping the bolt and using a live round, could you pull the head from a live round and use the unfired brass instead?
    I suppose so, but why not strip the bolt i.e. remove the firing pin ? Not familiar with your rifle but I guess it has a mauser type bolt, so should be dead easy. Worth doing anyway, to check cleanliness, lube etc.

    You ought to know how to strip your bolt... Surprising how few do, and how many modern rifles cannot be field-stripped.

  7. #7
    Has anyone seen one of these in action? How well do they work in the real world? The theory sounds correct.
    Also does anyone in the UK sell them?
    One gauge for all calibres sounds almost too good to be true!

    http://www.manthei-mess-systeme.com/...pace_gauge.htm


    Ian

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Sharpie View Post
    I suppose so, but why not strip the bolt i.e. remove the firing pin ? Not familiar with your rifle but I guess it has a mauser type bolt, so should be dead easy. Worth doing anyway, to check cleanliness, lube etc.

    You ought to know how to strip your bolt... Surprising how few do, and how many modern rifles cannot be field-stripped.
    You do NOT want to strip the bolt as the safety is on the bolt and it has small springs and detent balls they ping off into the unknown when you remove the safety leaver. These small parts may not be available for replacement.

    I spent hours with a Pot magnet finding the bits from mine .................................................. ... trust me tis not a good idea .

    Edit:- I have stripped the bolt off this majestic featherweight to have a look at it, no problems just curious , I have stripped P-14 bolts, Lee Enfields and my Brno 601. The Brno was the only one that needed it to dry it out after a horrendous outing in torrential driving rain.
    Last edited by Brithunter; 26-04-2013 at 04:11.

  9. #9
    Most times you're measuring something you want to strip the bolt. It somewhat depends on the action but extractor, ejector and firing pin would hinder getting the measurements (e.g. you can't feel when the bolt closes on it's own weight and when it starts to require force). I've done this mostly to set FL sizing dies correctly (enough, but not too much resizing).

    Sometimes I've used a small piece of soldering wire with a GO gauge to get a rough estimate on headspace. My gauges have a hole in place of primer pocket so I just hang a L shaped piece of wire from the hole and carefully close the action.

  10. #10
    The explanation by Brit is the reason I asked about pulling the bullet as he said before about not stripping this particular bolt.

    Sharpie, I always learn as muchas I can about my rifles so I can strip and clean them properly and understand/learn as much as I can. Hence these threads and me finding videos online that I posted last night!!
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