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Old June 21, 2013, 04:30 AM   #1
Blindstitch
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New Winchester brass

Last week I ordered some new Winchester brass for the 30-40 Krag from Graf and sons.

http://www.grafs.com/retail/catalog/...roductId/19593

They have a warning on their website saying...
Due to the packaging and shipping process, case necks are often slightly dinged or bent and need to be rounded up and sized to give proper neck tension. New and/or fired cases must be full-length resized or have the expander ball of the sizing die run through the case neck prior to loading.

I'm fine with that but this new brass had several pieces with a single deep crimp like gouge on the neck end. One was to the point where it was at least a 3mm crack.

I can't seem to find the really bad one at the moment but here's a picture.


Is this common or should I contact Winchester. or Graf and Sons?

Again these are brand new, never used and straight from the factory.

Last edited by Blindstitch; June 21, 2013 at 05:01 AM.
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Old June 21, 2013, 05:08 AM   #2
jwrowland77
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New Winchester brass

My 7mm Rem Mag brass looked like that from Winchester. That to me would be a Winchester issue, not a Graf and Sons issue.

It looks like it should come out though after resizing and trimming.
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Old June 21, 2013, 05:09 AM   #3
IcyOne
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From my experience in the last couple of years this is about normal for Winchester brass.... well that and their brass is often times .020 to .030 shorter than the trim to length. If you are concerned I would definitely contact Graf's. I'm sure they will make it right.
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Old June 21, 2013, 12:56 PM   #4
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With my low tech lee trim tool I took .045 thousandths or close to 1/16th of an inch off the worst piece and you can see that the dent is still there. At least the crack is gone.

Using the cutter as a length gauge using the trimmer the way it should be it won't cut any of the brass down. Therefore it should be the shortest it should be. I had to shim the head with a washer to get it down any lower.



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Old June 21, 2013, 11:17 PM   #5
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I've not been real pleased with new Winchester loading brass recently - at least not with the rifle cases I've bought. Biggest issue has been case mouths that were visibly not square, and already below trim length. Had to choose between trimming too short to square them up or loading them up as-is and hoping they grow enough to trim back square (also hoping the initial loads were at least accurate enough for steel gongs). I contacted Winchester and they were nice, even sent me more brass - but at this point it's mostly been relegated to emergency stash or traded to a friend for loading plinkers.

Nothing near as bad as your pics though -
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Old June 22, 2013, 03:41 PM   #6
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I think those are drop dents where a falling case landed the edge of its mouth against that of a case that was sitting upright in the bottom of the bin. It's just sloppy handling. Winchester used to be among the best brass from the standpoint of the alloy being long-lived. It may still be. They began moving their brass making from Alton, IL to Oxford, MS in 2010, and I don't think it's been as good since then.

How much you need to worry about it is another matter. A case with a crack is a bit distressing as it may have missed annealing. As to the short grip on the bullet, I wouldn't be concerned. An old rule of thumb with military brass, which is harder, was no more than four or five load cycles in the semi-autos, because of the threat of head separation. A number of match shooters would intentionally trim these back about 0.020" below minimum just so they never had to trim again before they retired the cases. And they still shot match accuracy.
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Old June 22, 2013, 09:34 PM   #7
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I contacted Graf and Sons and am awaiting a reply but maybe I should be contacting Winchester since it's really their problem.
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Old June 24, 2013, 12:57 AM   #8
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Contacted Winchester tonight so hopefully someone contacts me back.
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Old June 24, 2013, 06:27 AM   #9
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I hate to say this but, Winchester is loosening their QC in order to pump out product. I LOVE Winchester, and will always purchase their product but it's not pretty right now. If you're lucky enough to have some older but brand new Winchester cases, hold them up to nee Winchester stuff and you'll see the difference. My last batch of 400 .223 cases from Winchester I experienced 20% scrap. That's 20% per hundred that I took the pliers to and then tossed them in my brass scrap bucket. They were mostly flash hole problems which were severe. These are the times we live in unfortunately.
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Old June 24, 2013, 07:35 AM   #10
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All new WW or R-P rifle brass MUST be checked, trimmed, sized, and camphered straight out of the bag. Variance in length as much as .008 is not rare. Thus the warning is valid. I have seen bags which every piece of brass has defects at the case mouth that the reloader must deal with.

Finding cracked necks are rare. I too would contact the retailer or WW.

On the otherhand and if you want perfect brass and have the money, there is Norma & Lapua.
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Old June 24, 2013, 08:12 AM   #11
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New Winchester brass

Quote:
Originally Posted by chiefr View Post
All new WW or R-P rifle brass MUST be checked, trimmed, sized, and camphered straight out of the bag. Variance in length as much as .008 is not rare. Thus the warning is valid. I have seen bags which every piece of brass has defects at the case mouth that the reloader must deal with.

Finding cracked necks are rare. I too would contact the retailer or WW.

On the otherhand and if you want perfect brass and have the money, there is Norma & Lapua.
For the added cost of lapua or Norma, I think it's money well spent. I experienced what I would consider high scrap rate on a bag of Win brass. About 15%. Not to mention the flash holes were all over the place.
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Old June 24, 2013, 11:00 AM   #12
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I still have Virgin W-W cases 10 or more years old of various calibers!

I have heard complaints about new Winchester brass recently, since they no longer manufacture their brass/cases it would be a crap shoot to guess where they come from?? Obviously not the same quality, I'm lucky enough to have a quanity of the older Winchester cases for my 307 Winchester (obsolete), ammo and cases are difficult to find for this caliber that are available only from Winchester.. I should have commented I've NEVER had to size nor trim Winchester cases that were made by OLIN, I ran the expander in to the case mouth only (not thru the neck) to iron out any dents at the case mouth plus uniform primer pockets and that was it. Very uniform brass with a minimum of fuss!! William

Last edited by William T. Watts; June 24, 2013 at 04:43 PM.
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Old June 24, 2013, 02:55 PM   #13
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The only problem with Winchester bras that I've ever has was some of the 50 round bags did not have 50 rounds of brass. I have another couple of bags coming and if they're short this time I'll let Big W know and we'll see if and how they make it right. One bag was shy 2 roiunds and the other one round. These were nickel cases for my .280 Rem. I bought a large quantity of Winchester breaass for my 7x57 and .358 Win. as both rounds are a bit hard to come by and all I had to do on them was round out a few dented necks. They've worked just fine.
I don't get in a dither if brass is shorter than the trim to lenght. I hate trimming so if they give a couple of extra reloads before I do have to trim, for me that's great. I hate reaming out he flash hole and uniforming primer pockets too but contrary to what one gun writer said, I feel is made a diffeerence albeit slight with loads for my custom rifle and for two factory guns as well. At least those two things only need to be done once.
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Old June 24, 2013, 03:19 PM   #14
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Paul B. Posted:
The only problem with Winchester bras that I've ever has was some of the 50 round bags did not have 50 rounds of brass. I have another couple of bags coming and if they're short this time I'll let Big W know and we'll see if and how they make it right. One bag was shy 2 roiunds and the other one round. These were nickel cases for my .280 Rem. I bought a large quantity of Winchester breaass for my 7x57 and .358 Win. as both rounds are a bit hard to come by and all I had to do on them was round out a few dented necks. They've worked just fine.
I don't get in a dither if brass is shorter than the trim to lenght. I hate trimming so if they give a couple of extra reloads before I do have to trim, for me that's great. I hate reaming out he flash hole and uniforming primer pockets too but contrary to what one gun writer said, I feel is made a diffeerence albeit slight with loads for my custom rifle and for two factory guns as well. At least those two things only need to be done once.
Paul B.

===============================================================

I too have seen one or 2 missing with both WW or R-P. In the case of 358, WW is your only source, thus you get stuck. I never really bothered to complain. I hope you do & post results. Did not know WW quit making brass. I know as a fact R-P still makes theirs. Yep, I agree trimming is a pain, but an absolute necessity with domestic brass.

Last edited by chiefr; June 24, 2013 at 03:27 PM.
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Old June 24, 2013, 07:42 PM   #15
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Used to make 358 and 243 brass from a few thousand 308 military cases I bought thirty years ago. They have worked well for me after annealing the case necks.
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Old June 26, 2013, 01:27 PM   #16
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Graf contacted me back and is giving me a refund for the 5 pieces of brass. Not exactly what I wanted but it wasn't their quality control problem.

Winchester still hasn't contacted me.
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Old June 27, 2013, 08:10 PM   #17
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My brother got some Winchester 30-06, problems with early cracking in mild loads, poor overall quality as has been mentioned. He retired it and won't buy it again. It used to be one of the highly desired ones either factory ammo turned to reloaded or pick up.

I got to learn from his mistake and have bought none and interesting have yet to pick any up at the range.

Most places only have Winchester on the shelf and it seems to be there all the time.
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Old June 28, 2013, 04:36 AM   #18
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Just opened a new bad of Winchester .223 Rem last night...100 cases. I began preping enough to fill (2) 20 round loading blocks. I visually inspect and debur the flasholes as my fist step and by the time I had 40 cases (2) full blocks I had 9 cases sitting on the table that were scrap. That's 1/4 % scrap.
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Old June 28, 2013, 05:10 AM   #19
jwrowland77
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New Winchester brass

That's odd. I've recently gone through 200 Winchester cases in 7mm RM, and they were all great. Only thing that was out of line was the mouth oh the cases weren't exactly circle, but those got straightened out with the dies.
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Old June 28, 2013, 02:32 PM   #20
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That .30-40 brass is 'par for the course' in my experience with Winchester over the last 8-10 years. Their quality has gone down hill substantially, and is particularly bad with seasonal run cartridges (.30-40 Krag, .303 British, .358 Winchester, etc). It seems like they send all the good brass on for ammunition production, and sell the seconds as component brass.

Unfortunately, Remington isn't much better.

If you don't want to play the bad brass lottery, you have to stick with better manufacturers (Lapua, Norma, Hornady, etc).
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Old June 28, 2013, 03:37 PM   #21
Kimber84
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New Winchester brass

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankenMauser View Post
That .30-40 brass is 'par for the course' in my experience with Winchester over the last 8-10 years. Their quality has gone down hill substantially, and is particularly bad with seasonal run cartridges (.30-40 Krag, .303 British, .358 Winchester, etc). It seems like they send all the good brass on for ammunition production, and sell the seconds as component brass.

Unfortunately, Remington isn't much better.

If you don't want to play the bad brass lottery, you have to stick with better manufacturers (Lapua, Norma, Hornady, etc).
With the amount of Win brass I've scrapped lately I can't see Hornady, lapua etc really costing that much more per piece.
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Old July 3, 2013, 04:04 AM   #22
Blindstitch
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Winchester finally got back to me and it's almost like they don't believe the pictures of their junky quality brass so now they want me to send the 5 worst pieces in. When I told them I threw them away and got a bit pissy saying I had to send them in. So I told them I would look through the brass again and see if there are any others. I was lucky or unlucky enough to find 4 more decent but not perfect pieces and they're going to send a UPS label tomorrow and pick them up.

I enclosed a letter explaining what happened and that the 4 enclosed weren't the worst ones and now I'm down to 41 pieces from a 50 piece bag. Donny at Winchester said that when they're done they will send me a check or something for new brass. Well I don't need a check I need the brass. I hope they take into account that I had to pay for the 50 pack plus shipping and handling and don't just try to give me a few bucks.

Overall cost for the 50 pieces was $34 shipped. I may have been shorted $6.12 but it's still going to cost another $34 to get any brass my way.
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Old July 3, 2013, 08:15 AM   #23
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Quote:
They (Winchester) began moving their brass making from Alton, IL to Oxford, MS in 2010, and I don't think it's been as good since then.
This is why i no longer buy Win. New employees, new equipment. Not paying for there mistakes while learning.
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Old July 3, 2013, 12:57 PM   #24
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Never been a fan of WW rifle brass, been getting by with RP for quite some time. Have recently found Hornady is much better brass for only a lttle more than RP, much less than the imports. Case length and weight has been very uniform and sizing is a waste of time. Flash holes are uniform with no burrs. Absolutely zero culls so far. I have a batch of Hornady 35 Whelen cases coming, maybe they make brass for the 30-40.
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Old July 3, 2013, 03:04 PM   #25
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Ditto TxGunNut

I picked up a box of once fired Hornady 22/250 brass at our local range, I prepped the brass and was surprised to find these cases were the most uniform cases I've encountered in a long long time. All of the cases after sizing/trimming and uniforming primer pocket weighed within .5gr, when I primed the cases every case felt the same when the primer seated. I don't need any cases at the moment but when I do I will look around for Hornady to add to my stash!! Very impressive! William
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