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Old December 4, 2012, 04:52 PM   #1
brigond
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keeping track of the cases

I have been attempting to keep track of the brass I'm reloading . Basically, how many times I reload the cases. I have a container marked 1meaning loaded once ,another marked two and so on. This is getting tedious and annoying. Especially when I'm at the range picking up other folks brass and trying to keep mine from mixing with that brass. I'm talking about 9mm since this is the only caliber I'm reloading for now. Do any of you keep tabs on this ? Should I just save myself the trouble and let it all mix ? I figured I can keep track of wear and tear on the cases if I separate them.
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Old December 4, 2012, 05:17 PM   #2
Kilroy08
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I probably should since I have done some hot loads in the past, but I do keep an eye out for signs of wear and tear.

I typically just load up some econoblaster for whatever caliber my stocks are getting low on. With mild weight charges and bullets, the brass should last a while.

The loads with a bit of piquance are usually shoved into new or once fired brass and set aside for Just Such an Occasion, along with my numbered feathers.
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Old December 4, 2012, 05:21 PM   #3
hodaka
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For my pistol brass, mostly 9mm and .45 ACP, I've given up trying to keep track of the numbers fired and just mix them up. Rifle brass is another issue.
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Old December 4, 2012, 05:22 PM   #4
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I used to keep track of my case usage (as best I could). That lasted about two months...

The thing is that unless you start with your own new brass, you'll never know how many times it was previously loaded anyway. A lot of the "new" brass I've reloaded the very first time might have been loaded a dozen times previously. If you shoot a lot (as I do for organized 2 times a week IPSC practices), I'd spend more time sorting than I would shooting. Then you have to get the rest of the guys to sort their share of brass to remove your cases. It just ain't feasible for me.

I also don't see much value in keeping track. I just watch out for bad cases - usually split case mouth or loose primer pockets. I don't find many like that. And with my IPSC buddies, we've probably reloaded a portion of each others' brass 50 times!
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Old December 4, 2012, 11:02 PM   #5
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Not enough time, not enough space and not enough money for the storage.

I gave up and per the rest, just keep an eye on it

I do disagree on knowing new from old range brass, in rifle. You can usually tell if its once fire and often I pick it up after they shoot and see it coming new out of a box

Still you shoot 20 here, load 40 there and then which one had what in it and how often was it shot and by who and arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.
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Old December 4, 2012, 11:37 PM   #6
tkglazie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hodaka View Post
For my pistol brass, mostly 9mm and .45 ACP, I've given up trying to keep track of the numbers fired and just mix them up. Rifle brass is another issue.
This
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Old December 4, 2012, 11:53 PM   #7
jepp2
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For 9mm, no. An interesting study was done on the number of reloads from 9mm brass can be found here.

Near the bottom of the article is this picture.

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Old December 5, 2012, 01:05 AM   #8
FrankenMauser
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I track rifle cases by keeping them in lots of 20 or 50 (depending on the cartridge and type of boxes I have).

But, 9mm....
New, old, covered in mud, tarnished beyond belief.... it all goes in the same box.

I haven't actually had a case fail in several years. I lose them (in rocks/grass/sagebrush/mud/snow) before they have a chance to be reloaded enough times.
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Old December 5, 2012, 01:21 AM   #9
scsov509
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I don't track pistol brass in anything except 44 mag where the loads are obviously a lot hotter. I watch for split necks as I load, but find honestly that most autoloader brass gets lost before it wears out.
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Old December 5, 2012, 08:29 AM   #10
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I just track rifle for the purpose of annealing. I just use cheap dollar store plastic containers with masking tape labels.
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Old December 5, 2012, 12:53 PM   #11
brigond
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Yeah I'm convinced , I'm going to start mixing and just keep an eye out for the beat up cases. That chart and link was great too. Thanks .
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Old December 5, 2012, 01:35 PM   #12
BigJimP
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No, I gave it up a long time ago as well..../ its not practical at an indoor range with a concrete floor ( I swept up a gallon bag full of brass in my lane and surrounding area on Sunday...)...and I probably got at least 5 calibers in the mix...

I check the cases after I clean them ....and toss out anything that looks suspect....beyond that, I just don't care ...
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Old December 5, 2012, 06:30 PM   #13
FrankenMauser
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Yeah I'm convinced , I'm going to start mixing and just keep an eye out for the beat up cases. That chart and link was great too. Thanks .
The chart looks great, but I don't like their methodology.

They tested a single lot of each brand, only tested 2 cases from that lot, and only tested in a single pistol.
It's a rather tiny sample size, that might not be at all representative of each overall brand; or even the way those same cases would behave in a different chamber.

I understand it was still a large test (fair number of rounds fired), with quite a bit of time in the project, but the data set is too small to draw definitive conclusions.

The chart, alone, should make a reader question the data set, with it showing some very dramatic differences in the life of cases from the very same lot.
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Old December 6, 2012, 10:30 PM   #14
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Quote:
I check the cases after I clean them ....and toss out anything that looks suspect....beyond that, I just don't care ...
Thats my system as well.

I sort by cartridge................and if its loadable or not. I don't keep track of times shot, don't segregate once fired from unknown range pickup, don't separate by headstamp, age, or whether its nickle plated or plain old brass. It gets a once over to check for cracks or creases (dents are fine, as long as they aren't creased), mud, or horrible pitting on the outside.

Cases that dont' pass the "cranky would shoot it" test (as my brothers call it) get chucked in a jug to recycle. The rest get reloaded untill they either get lost (most common) or start cracking.........and depending on the size and placement of the crack, they may get loaded one last time before being tossed in the scrap jug.
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Old December 7, 2012, 12:24 AM   #15
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Yep. I'll just add I DO sort by headstamp, and I just have ziplock bags with REM WIN and all that on them..

I don't lose my brass before it wears out, but I'll shoot it until it has cracks or loose primer pockets without worrying. I keep on top of trimming, and that gives me a good chance to notice cracks around the mouth, which is usually how mine bite the dust.
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Old December 7, 2012, 01:31 AM   #16
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Started out trying to keep track, but soon found it was impractible for large volumes and range pickup. I do sort by headstamp.
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Old December 7, 2012, 08:47 AM   #17
30Cal
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For rifle stuff, I make sure to cycle through all the brass I have so that I don't end up with more than two boxes/buckets.
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Old December 7, 2012, 09:18 AM   #18
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If the brass is bought or comes from store-bought ammo, then I keep track of the number of loads UNTIL it has been fired enough that I will not use it for max loads.

If the brass is range pick-up, then only God knows how many times it has really been loaded. And, I will not use that for max loads.

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Old December 7, 2012, 09:26 AM   #19
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For playing around pistol, I don't even bother sorting by headstamp. Shoot them until they fail or I notice something I don't like about them during the loading process.

I have some .45 ACP brass that is easily on it's 30th reload and it will probably last another 30.
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Old December 7, 2012, 06:08 PM   #20
FrankenMauser
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Yep. I'll just add I DO sort by headstamp, and I just have ziplock bags with REM WIN and all that on them..
I used to. And, I do still work new loads up (generally) only in Winchester brass for 9mm and .380 Auto.

But, once I have the load finalized, I load it up in my "grab bag" of brass - 2-4 of each head stamp of significant quantity in my stash (about 170 cases, total). I run all of that through the pistol, and call it good if there were no issues. From then on, the load is run in bulk on my Dillon 550B, with mixed brass. I still inspect everything, but I don't bother sorting.


In contrast, as F. Guffey is always bringing up, I go to great lengths to sort, prep, and track my rifle brass. But for semi-auto handgun cartridges, 9mm especially, I haven't found even sorting by headstamp to make any real difference.
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Old December 8, 2012, 08:11 PM   #21
orthosophy
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ive noticed that my rem brass needs resizing more often. Not sure if that's just a late development with heavy loads. I'll check after these latest test batches that are relatively light loads.
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