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Old December 7, 2007, 06:04 PM   #1
77F150Screwball
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Case Sizing Problems

I've been having some trouble at the bench here lately with my case conversions. A friend of mine gave me a case of once fired federal .30-06 brass that I'm trying to convert and load for my .25-06 and .35 whelen.

Going from the .30-06 to .25-06, I am taking two steps, first sizing the brass to .270 and then the rest of the way down to .25, using RCBS de-prime/re-size dies for each step on a Rockchucker. After sizing from .30 to .270, I mic my cases, and if necessary run them through the trimmer, and then do the same from .270 to .25. After the second trim, I prime and load as usual. However, when I load those shells into my Ruger M77, they are HARD to chamber, requiring considerable effort to close the bolt.

The .35 whelen die (also RCBS), on the other hand, regularly splits cases when I try to step from .30 to .35. The sizing die has a tapered neck sizer, starting not much larger than .30, and seems like it should not be splitting cases at all.

The cases are tumbled clean and then lightly lubed with RCBS case lube prior to sizing.

Where am I going wrong? Am I missing a step that old wildcatters took that I am unaware of?
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Old December 7, 2007, 07:20 PM   #2
Shoney
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The 25-06 casenecks are now too thick. You will need to neck turn them.
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Old December 7, 2007, 08:04 PM   #3
Thesenator
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I agree with Shoney. The extra brass is going somewhere and its not all going into length which you are trimming off, some of it is going into the thickness of the necks. Check your neck ID and OD.
Do you notice any buldging when you seat a 25cal bullet or is the neck still straight and smoothe?
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Old December 8, 2007, 12:18 AM   #4
Sogman6
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Sizing problems:

I built a bull barreled 25/06 on a Remington 700 action. A very accurate rifle, and I made all of my own cases for it. I never had that particular problem. I did mic the the 30-06 brass before I made the 25-06. Checking brass thickness. I used a bit extra case lube and went directly to the 25-06 die. I may have just been lucky in the choice of brass I used. Which turns out to be mostly Remington, but the brass has to go somewhere, with me it went into the lenght which was taken care of with a case trimmer.

Just one question, have you tried factory ammo in your Ruger? And do they chamber freely? It may sound silly but I have found factory boo boo's in guns and in dies.
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Old December 8, 2007, 01:35 AM   #5
saands
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The splitting may be a sign that you need to re-anneal the neck of the case ... the old wildcatters did this frequently when working the brass a lot. There are many ways to do this ... do a search and you'll be set.

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Old December 8, 2007, 10:34 AM   #6
Sport45
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Just for grins, here's something to try for sizing the brass up to 35 caliber.

I know nothing about the 35 Wheelen, but if a 30-06 case will chamber and be held by the extractor this may work for you. I know it works for rimmed cartridges.

Put about 3.5 grains of fast powder (Titegroup, Bullseye, etc) in a sized and primed '06 case. Fill to the top with corn meal. Push a bar of soap over the neck to plug the end and slightly compress the corn meal.

Take your rifle and the corn meal cartridge outside. Put on your eye and ear protection then chamber the round and fire it at the ground about 6' in front of you. Keep the muzzle down and shake a bit to keep any leftover meal from falling back into your action. Open the chamber and see if you don't have a well-formed casing.

I've done this many times making .375win brass out of 30-30 and they all seem to come out great. Smells good too, like a bakery.
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Old December 8, 2007, 05:17 PM   #7
77F150Screwball
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Thesenator: There are no noticeable bulges, or I would not have tried to shoot them out of my rifle. However, I did not think of neck turning the cases, and I will try that on the next batch. It is very possible that is the problem. It usually is the simple things that you don't think of that bite you in the butt.

Sogman: Yes, the rifle will chamber factory loads, as well as factory made 25-06 brass that I've reloaded. It just does not like my re calibrated 30-06 brass. This one is a M77 Mark II (IIRC, my brother has it and I'm not looking at my inventory atm) heavy barrel, and is a very good shooting rifle.

Sport: On your fire forming method, does the gun take any special cleaning afterwards? Is it safe to do that repeatedly on a "good" gun, 10 or 20 cases at a time? Would PowerPistol be a good powder for that purpose?
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Old December 9, 2007, 12:13 AM   #8
Sport45
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When I made my .375win brass I only ran a wet then a dry patch through and started firing the real stuff. Won't hurt the barrel or chamber at all. Of course .375win is a rimmed cartridge and is held square in the chamber. I believe this would work for your application as well. Make your forming loads one at a time so you can tell if you need more powder. Power Pistol should work, but you might need a little more of it.

As an aside, I've seen .308 that was accidentally shot in a Garand and the brass comes out looking something like rimless 45-70. And it doesn't split.
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Old December 9, 2007, 05:20 PM   #9
77F150Screwball
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Good to know. I'll give that a try and see if I can't make some good whelen brass for use.

45-70 rimless huh? Thats something I'd like to see sometime, although I don't think I'm crazy enough to try it myself. Which one of my friends is it thats kinda gullible again?
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Old December 9, 2007, 06:35 PM   #10
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Any time you neck down brass it's a good idea to properly and completely anneal it first. Also, this is one of the few times that neck turning is required for cases to be used in factory guns. Be advised that if you turn necks with a hand held turning too without first reaming the neck inside diameter with a trued tool like a lathe reamer/turner, the pilot of your neck turning tool may be off center, resulting in cases with skewed necks.

If you have neither the equipment or knowledge required to do these two necessary steps, do not be surprised if your new brass does not work well. There is a very good article on annealing at 6mmbr.com. Forster makes a very good lathe type neck turner/case trimmer/reamer at a reasonable price.

http://www.forsterproducts.com/
http://www.6mmbr.com/annealing.html


The 6mmbr.com site can be a very slow download.
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Old December 10, 2007, 11:01 PM   #11
Sogman6
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Hey Sport45 that cornmeal thing works great, I use a cotton ball instead of soap however. To make my 30-06 Imp. cases I use 10 grains of Bullseye fill the case to the first shoulder with cornmeal and stuff cotton balls tightly to hold it all in. It gives you about 80% formation, maybe I will try the soap or wax to get the other 20%.
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