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Old May 3, 2007, 11:42 PM   #1
PeteQuad
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Throw away my brass?

So I'm just getting set up. I have my Lee Classic Turret, and .38 and .44 dies. I've cleaned about 300 rounds of .44 special brass.

I've been shooting .44 specials from a company called Triton. I just realized their brass has the A-MERC label on the back. I've just re-read a bunch of threads about how terrible this brass is.

In total I have about 600 rounds (some not fired yet) of this stuff and I really hate to throw it away as I have no other .44 special brass handy. Should I really just throw it all away like everyone is saying? Keep in mind I have never reloaded even a single round yet.

To make matters worse, 90% of my .38 special brass is Sellier & Bellot which some people also say is not great.

Any advice here is appreciated. I'm sorry about bringing up this topic again when there is so many threads about it already, but I wanted to get opinions regarding whether people would take the drastic step of actually throwing this much brass in the garbage.
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Old May 4, 2007, 12:03 AM   #2
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If you decide to get rid of it, don't throw it in the garbage. The recyclers are paying $1.20/lb for brass and more.

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Old May 4, 2007, 01:29 AM   #3
mattgreennra
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Omni source gives $1.50 for gun brass that is not mixed (brass primers) as of last month.
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Old May 4, 2007, 03:26 AM   #4
Ifishsum
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I haven't used A-MERC brass so I can't tell you much about that but I have loaded S&B brass before without much problem. It is thinner so will probably split necks sooner than other brands, and watch for high primers that might lock up your revolver.

I'm generally not afraid to reload a revolver case at least once for plinker loads, just watch for obvious flaws and don't try to hot-rod your loads. Upgrade when you can.
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Old May 4, 2007, 06:47 AM   #5
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I'm always able to give away my bigger brass, so will save it.

But I feel terrible about throwing away all the 22 shells. Does it have any worth? I'd donate it to the recyclers if they can use it.
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Old May 4, 2007, 09:26 AM   #6
Smokey Joe
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Save yourself a big hassle!!!

Petequad--Yes, A-merc brass is junk! Recycle it ($1.60/lb here last time for me!) The Chinese are grabbing up copper, which drives up the price of brass.

Especially if you're new to reloading, when you'll have this and that not quite working right for you, and having to learn new techniques, etc, etc, the LAST thing you need is one more factor to have to control.

A-merc brass has primer pockets that don't hold primers. Except when the pockets are too tight to get the primers into. It has rims that are too thick for extractors to grab--except when the rims are so thin they don't seal the chamber. Primer holes 'way off center. Varying thickness brass from one side of the case to the other. And so on. And so on.

I don't care how much of it you've got, nor how much $$ you feel you'll be wasting by getting rid of it. Do yourself a favor--DON'T RELOAD AMERC!!!

It's almost impossible to find universal agreement among reloaders about anything--we are an individualistic bunch--but I think that if we all agree on any one thing it is that Amerc brass is junk.

Frankly I don't understand how the American Ammunition Company stays in business, but then there are a number of mysteries of the universe, the answers to which I am not privy.

S&B brass is okay. Not great, but perfectly usable. If you're going to buy brass, you owe it to yourself to try The Best, which is Starline for pistol brass.

After you've reloaded lotsa rounds, and have a clear understanding of the basic process, you could try reloading some A-merc brass if you insist on re-inventing the wheel. It's been done, and reported in this and other fora, and the results are always the same. But do yourself a favor and use decent brass for learning the process.

Am I making myself clear, here?
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Last edited by Smokey Joe; May 4, 2007 at 09:33 AM. Reason: The usual--had another thought.
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Old May 4, 2007, 10:20 AM   #7
PeteQuad
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OK I hear you

Ugh $83 more I will have to spend for 500 starline brass.
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Old May 4, 2007, 11:35 AM   #8
2400
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Quote:
Ugh $83 more I will have to spend for 500 starline brass.
Good choice, that Starline will last you a long, long time.
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Old May 4, 2007, 01:04 PM   #9
gwalchmai
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$78.90 delivered straight from http://www.starlinebrass.com. Helps a little.
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Old May 4, 2007, 03:22 PM   #10
PeteQuad
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Great, thanks for that
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Old May 6, 2007, 05:26 PM   #11
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You might want to look for brass on eBay. I have successfully purchased quite a bit of good brass there.
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Old May 9, 2007, 05:31 AM   #12
ulflyer
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Been reloading 500 rounds of Starline 45acp forever, it seems (don't keep count, prob a couple doz times at least), with not a single split case yet. Good stuff.
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Old May 12, 2007, 12:34 AM   #13
tharmer
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I just bought 5000 cases on EBay. Federal .45 and mixed 9mm (mostly Winchester). There are all kinds of lot sizes available. That's where I'd go (actually...I have gone there )
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Old May 12, 2007, 11:20 AM   #14
azredhawk44
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I've bought a batch of 500 Starline for my 44mag, and I was sorely disappointed by it.

Each and every case needed the primer pocket reamed deeper to fit CCI 300 pistol primers. Also, out of the 500, I had two cases with bad case rims... One with a paper-thin case rim, and another with a double-thick case rim. Not the end of the world, but I've never gotten that from Winchester, Remington, Federal, S&B or Magtech brass.

My favorite brass for 44mag is Remington. I understand you are shooting 44special, but I am sure that Starline uses the same production line for 44mag and 44special production... they just trim the specials a bit shorter.

That being said, I also have 500 pieces of 45acp+p starline brass and that stuff has all been top-notch. Maybe my revolver brass was made on a Friday afternoon just shy of quitting time, wheras my acp brass was made Wednesday at 10am.

S&B is pretty good brass. I have some of it that must have 10 loads through it in 45acp. The primer pockets are extremely tight and will require deburring to ease insertion of new primers, but other than that, I like their brass.

In my experience:
1. Remington makes the most consistent brass. Rifle and Handgun... ignoring the premium makers like Nosler or Lapua.
2. Starline makes pretty good handgun brass. I had a much higher opinion of them prior to my 44mag order.
3. Federal makes very WORKABLE brass, but it is soft. It stretches easily, and primer pockets in particular go soft quickly.
4. Winchester makes okay brass, but it gets brittle quickly. Tempered very differently than Federal apparently.
5. Magtech is good stuff, but I have a hard time getting fully behind it. It's brazilian, IIRC, and I'm not sure I want to put a lot of faith in their quality control for a large purchase. I have several hundred pieces in various pistol calibers, but I will never buy just their brass... it is all "reloads" from factory ammo.
6. S&B is annoying for the first reload, but then very good brass... in handgun. I have some reloadable S&B 7.62x54R for my Mosin Nagant, but I haven't shot enough of it to merit a loading session at the bench yet. We'll see how it handles for rifle ammo.

Last edited by azredhawk44; May 13, 2007 at 10:34 AM. Reason: mis-spelled "45acp+p"
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Old May 12, 2007, 12:02 PM   #15
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Why in the world would you simply take the word of someone off of an internet forum that your brass is junk when you can find out by trying to reload it ?

Smokey Joe may be right but then again maybe not , you know companies often do make efforts to improve the quality of their products when there is a problem .

It will take you perhaps 30 min to an hour to run through 100 or so resizing and priming them and you probably spend more time than that in a day reading forums .

If the primer wont seat toss it in a junk bowl/box and move on to the next one .

All you have to lose is a little time .
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Old May 12, 2007, 06:56 PM   #16
Smokey Joe
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Bad Starline?? Yikes!

Azredhawk--
Quote:
I've bought a batch of 500 Starline for my 44mag, and I was sorely disappointed by it. Each and every case needed the primer pocket reamed deeper to fit CCI 300 pistol primers. Also, out of the 500, I had two cases with bad case rims.
I'd have contacted Starline right away had this happened to me--betcha they'd have wanted to make up to you and then some. Starline has FAR better QC than that.

With a high-grade company that has competition, and a reputation to protect, like Starline, Lapua, Anschutz, Redding, Dillon, Buck Knives, or L. L. Bean, to name the first 7 that come to mind, the only reason they can stay in business is to maintain that reputation.

And that means doing whatever necessary to keep the customer happy. A happy customer will tell 2 people about his experience. A disgruntled customer will tell 100 people.
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Last edited by Smokey Joe; May 12, 2007 at 06:58 PM. Reason: Speling eror.
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Old May 12, 2007, 07:10 PM   #17
Smokey Joe
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A-merc is junk.

Big 001--Well, don't just look at one opinion. Do a search on this forum, and on The High Road. You'll find out it's not just my personal bias. Like I said, reloaders rarely agree 100% on anything, but the universal opinion is, (a) everyone who has tried A-merc brass has experienced trouble with it, and (b) its specifications simply vary too much to be reliable.

My effort in this thread, early on, was to try to save a new reloader an extra hassle he doesn't need, and can easily avoid, while "learning the ropes." As a new reloader, he has more to lose than your stated "a little time." He might lose his enthusiasm for the whole business of reloading, brought on by frustration with trying to reload lousy brass.

You will note that I suggested that after he knows the basics of reloading, to go ahead and try reloading some A-merc brass if he wants.

Have YOU tried to reload A-merc brass???
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Last edited by Smokey Joe; May 12, 2007 at 07:13 PM. Reason: Clumsy wording.
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Old May 12, 2007, 10:06 PM   #18
PeteQuad
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Smokey Joe was just the last straw. I had read literally dozens of threads in various forums about how bad this brass was, without a single positive post about them, before I posted this hoping someone would come to its rescue.

I literally loaded my first 2 cartidges last night, so it would likely have taken a lot more than 30 minutes for me to run through 100 shells, and my biggest worry was that if something went wrong I wouldn't know if it was me or the components.
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Old May 12, 2007, 11:32 PM   #19
Zippy06
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I reload it all.
And I shoot it all.
no problem with amerc, s&b, etc.
But, I use a turret. Not a progressive. You can feel the problems/issues.
I even check the insides. With a flashlight.
If it don't feel right. In the scrap.
$1.20/lb.
Cool.
Load em, till they crack. Or lose them.
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Old May 13, 2007, 06:56 AM   #20
PeteQuad
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By the way, like I said, I've only just started reloading, and I haven't examined all my brass yet (just threw it in the tumbler and took it out). I have only reloaded 2 .38 special rounds. But I had to pull out 4 S&B brass to do it, because the 1st and 3rd I picked out had cracks running along the side.

This is once shot brass - is that normal? The other two were fine and loaded smoothly, and at least the flaws were quite obvious, so it shouldn't cause any issues during loading.

I took a look at the Amerc brass I have in the bin for recycling and noticed many of them had off center firing pin strikes.
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Old May 13, 2007, 08:32 AM   #21
Mal H
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Quote:
Ugh $83 more I will have to spend for 500 starline brass.
That will be money well spent. However, the report of bad Starline brass is disconcerting. I hope it was only a single bad run, normally their brass is top notch.

Now, I have to disagree with the assessment of the Amerc brass - in this case only, I hasten to add. Normally, I would be right in there saying to toss the stuff in the nearest trash can. However, Triton is, or rather, was a reputable company with a good product and a conscientious business owner. I'm thinking that they would have ordered brass from American Ammunition with specific quality criteria. I would inspect the brass for good and uniform flash holes, well centered primer cavities, consistent web thickness, etc. If it passes those tests, I would use it to reload.

Also, I've never found S&B to use bad brass.
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Old May 13, 2007, 12:45 PM   #22
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Cracks and split means the brass is done and shouldn't be used however with a quality factory case this shouldn't happen until after many reloads "easily over a dozen" with moderate loads in them .

Off center primer strikes mean nothing , as a matter of fact most of my guns do this all the time .

I would suggest you buy quality ammo from which to get your brass and I strongly suggest Winchester , Federal and Remington in that order . PMC is also very good quality if you run in to any on a dealers shelf .

Winchester is the best there is in my opinion and costs the same as the others .

I have Winchester 38/357 and 45 acp cases I know I have loaded close to 30 times with mid range loads .

Smokey Joe please understand I wasn't implying you or anyone else is lying regarding the quality of the A-merc brass however , when I first started reloading I tried a batch of new Remington 357 cases with a mid range load and cast bullets along with the same load in once fired Winchester cases .

After the first firing I had to toss 4 Remington cases "mouth splits running 1/8th of the way down the case" and zero Winchesters , second loading or reloading I tossed another 6 Rem's and again zero Wins , third I tossed more Rem's and no Wins and then I just tossed all the Remington's . I had 38 Remington cases that were of just as high quality as my Winchester 38's and later bought Factory Rem 357 rounds when I caught them on sale and their cases didn't fail as the cases alone had when reloading them .

I got some bad cases from a reputable dealer/manufacture plain and simple and it is possible these A-merc folks could have , or will improved their quality .

I have never loaded these A-merc's and never will as I stick to name brand American made components and ammunition , something everyone should do if they intend to reload them .
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