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Old April 11, 2013, 07:02 PM   #1
histed
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Forming .308 cases

Greetings all. I'm a newbie to any forum, but I've been reloading for more than 20 years, mostly handguns, 223 and 30-30. Recently I started working on a .308 load using 168 grain Nosler Ballistic Silvertips and Varget powder. Two questions, really. I don't have many .308 cases and, as you know, they're scarcer than hen's teeth. I DO have about 300 30-06 cases (but no 06). Last night I tried reforming an 06 into a .308 and it seemed to go very well. BUT before I spend a lot of time I want to know if any of you have done this and if anyone knows of a reason it shouldn't be done. The second question is about primers for Varget - I usually use CCI or WLR. Do I need a magnum primer with this powder in this caliber? I know I don't in the .223, but my manuals are all over the place. Thanks in advance for the help.
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Old April 11, 2013, 08:23 PM   #2
Mobuck
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There are plenty of .308 cases for sale on the auction sites. The problem with forming 308 from 30/06 is that you're forming the new .308 neck from the heavier shoulder of the 06 case. You'll need to ream the necks to prevent the thicker neck from wedging the bullet instead of releasing it when fired. This will certainly increase pressures drastically.
I've nost seen magnum primers required with Varget.
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Old April 11, 2013, 08:27 PM   #3
Jimro
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Right now wideners has primed lake city brass in stock, don't know how long that will last: http://www.wideners.com/itemdetail.c...78|282|909|980

Other than making sure your necks aren't too thick (you are cutting 12mm of length off the brass and moving the area to where the brass is thicker) I don't see any problems with it other than a huge time investment.

You don't need magnum primers for Varget in 308. The exception is if you are loading for a semi auto (in which case just buy the primed LC brass and trade off the 30-06 to someone who will use it) then you want a tougher milspec primer. If you use ball powder a magnum primer will also come in handy.

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Old April 11, 2013, 09:17 PM   #4
hammie
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I'm probably not as mechanically skilled as you or others, but when I try to push back a shoulder that far in one pass, I inevitably get creases, collapsed cases, or brass folds. I should think that the process would go easier in two passes, which would mean a pass through a forming die, than a pass into a full length sizing die, and then a trim die. And finally, as everyone said, inside reaming the new neck.

I would think that for the time and the cost of the special equipment, you could buy a lot of once fired or even new .308 win brass. It's more plentiful than .30-06.

As for the .30-06 springfield brass, that sounds like a good excuse to go and buy a .30-06 rifle. Or if you don't want another 30 caliber, but still want to do case forming, then buy a .270 win, a .25-06 rem, or a .35 whelen.
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Old April 12, 2013, 05:53 AM   #5
Bart B.
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I've formed hundreds of .308 cases from .30-06 match brass. But one needs to use as little case lube on cleaned cases as possible else dents and creases will happen in the shoulder area.

I doubt there'll be a problem with neck wall thickness as long as your .308 barrel has a SAAMI spec chamber. Yes, there'll be less clearance between case neck and chamber neck, but so do lots of benchrest rifles have. SAAMI spec chamber necks have .344 +.002 inch diameter specs.

Full length size some .30-06 cases in your .308 die, trim them to 2.010 inch, chamfer the case mouths then seat some bullets. Measure the loaded round's neck diameter. If it's less than .340 inch, that's fine and you're good to go. My .30-06 cases resized to .308 had .339 inch loaded round neck diameter with neck wall thickness of .015 to .016 inch.
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Last edited by Bart B.; April 12, 2013 at 08:33 AM.
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Old April 12, 2013, 08:50 AM   #6
Sure Shot Mc Gee
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I could see reforming for a unusual cartridge like 300 Savage to 250 Savage or 25-35 to 22 High Power. But since 308 is so readily available. (why?) If you check the bases of the two cartridges (308 verses 30-06) You'll notice there is a difference how ever slight it may be. I can offer you a little simple tip: Anneal your 30-06 brass first before their resizing.
Just a thought. Why not advertize for a Trade. 300 >30-06 brass say for 150 308. That would garner some attention I'm sure. Personally I don't shoot a 308 otherwise I would consider making a deal just to help you out Sir. How ever you proceed. All's good.

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Old April 12, 2013, 12:51 PM   #7
histed
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Thanks for the info. I never thought about the thicker brass firther down the case - REALLY glad I didn't try to fire any. The trade sounds like a good idea. Gotta count the 06 brass. Is this the right fourm - or should I go to a diffrent page?
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Old April 12, 2013, 02:23 PM   #8
Sure Shot Mc Gee
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Sell/Trade column is on a different page here on TFLF:
Quote:
Buy, Sell and Trade: Holsters, Gear and Accessories
Best of luck.

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Old April 12, 2013, 03:37 PM   #9
F. Guffey
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Forming 308 W from 30/06: Forming 308 from 30/06 cases is a bad habit if the 308 Winchester full length sizer die is used. There is nothing about the 308 W full length sizer die that resembles a forming die. My favorite forming die is the 308 Winchester forming/trim ide because it is short, I use the 308 Winchester forming die when forming 7.7 japanese, 8mm57, 7mm57 etc.. All that is required for the reloader to keep up with is adjusting the die off the shell holder to compensate for the short forming die.



The next best favorite forming die is the 243 Winchester forming die for all the same reasons, then there is the 350 Remington forming die.



My forming die was paid for after I formed 100 cases, then there is trimming, when trimming 30/06 cases to 308 Winchester it is required to trim .375"+ from each case, that is 37.5" (inches) per 100 cases, the form/trim die is designed to be used with the man-tool, the hack saw, then finished with a file. The hack saw makes short work of trimming.



As always the formed case must be sized with the full length sizer die after forming. Then there is off setting the length of the chamber with the length of the formed case, avoid mindlessly adjusting the die to the shell holder until the length of the chamber has been determined, length of the chamber? as it applies to the chamber from the shoulder/datum to the bolt face. If you are familiar with making do with what you have in the way of tools, the datum, circle, round hole is .400", If you are not politically correct the datum for the 30/06 chamber works, the datum round hole, circle is .375 for the datum measure from the plaine.



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Last edited by F. Guffey; April 12, 2013 at 03:50 PM. Reason: change nest to next
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Old April 12, 2013, 03:43 PM   #10
F. Guffey
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then there is the assumed part.

It depends on the rifle and chamber, military chamber have generous necks, forming 30/06 cases to 308/7.62 NATO works, but if the chamber is commercial the additional .006" increase in neck diameter could be risky.



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Old April 12, 2013, 04:49 PM   #11
histed
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F. Guffy - Ya done lost me! That sounds a lot more technical and involved than I was figuring on. My original thought was just to use what's on hand until things settle down in DC - or the '14 election. Since I've never done this or tried to wildcat I was pretty clueless. Sounds as if it CAN be done, but really only as a last resort and by someone with more technical knowledge.
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Old April 12, 2013, 05:07 PM   #12
hodaka
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It is a lot more trouble than it is worth to make that much of a change in brass. How many cases do you need? PM me.
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Old April 12, 2013, 05:23 PM   #13
jepp2
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PM me if you would like a link to a site that has new LC primed brass for $159 for 500. In stock.
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Old April 12, 2013, 05:25 PM   #14
F. Guffey
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histed
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Beware of the answer that starts with “All ya gotta do is etc..”. last week I formed various magnum cases to a bench rest type magnum chamber, it took 4 different dies, two of them were forming dies. Someone had already got an early start, he decided it could not be done, he was getting advise from someone that claimed he did it all the time like there was nothing to it. It took me longer to find the dies than it took to form 120 cases. Two of the rifles belong to me.

Mistakes, the best case for forming is a new case, next option is a once fired case, when choosing cases that have worn out their useful life failure is built into the process. Nothing givers the reloader more confidence than new cases.

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Old April 12, 2013, 07:42 PM   #15
hodaka
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histed,

Like I said, i can send you some for free or you may want to check here.

http://www.wideners.com/itemdetail.c...m_id=100000363

Seems like a pretty good deal.
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