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Old July 22, 2011, 11:54 AM   #1
ragwd
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Sorting brass

I have about 400 .223 or 5.56 cartridges tumbled, fl sized deprimed, primer pocket swaged and uniformed, trimed to length and deburred and ready for priming. I was wondering what everyone else does about sorting brass? I have basicly 4 different cartridges....

marked 5.56 and weigh between 96.3 and 97.4 grains,

horandy 223 rem that weigh 96.4 to 97.7

Lake city with a 2 digit year and the + with a circle around it that weigh 92.0 to 93.6 grains,

winchester 223 rem that weigh 93.1 to 94.6

I am loading to the 223 rem so I was thinking of keeping the 556 and the horandy together since they weigh close, and putting the lake city and winchester together cause they weigh close.
Is weight of cartridge a sorting consideration , If so how close of cartridge weight to you group together for accuracy?
Thanks for taking the time .
Gar
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Old July 22, 2011, 12:11 PM   #2
Jim243
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I sort the 5.56 and 223 brass. That + with the circle on it is the NATO marking and will require the primer pocket to be swaged if not already done. Otherwise for an AR there will be no significant differences in accuracy. If you are shooting for groups in competition, I would stick with one head stamp for all rounds used for this type of shooting.

Jim
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Old July 22, 2011, 12:19 PM   #3
Roger Ronas
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Although case weight is important I think that case volume is more important for accuracy.

Roger
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Old July 22, 2011, 02:22 PM   #4
Rifleman1776
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Something new here for me.
Is the difference between .223 and 5.56 simply one is commercial and one is military? I dunno.
Or are they different in other respects also.
BTW, I always sort my (all calibers) brass by manufacturer. I also am careful to sort out defective brass and discard.
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Old July 22, 2011, 03:58 PM   #5
Jim243
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Or are they different in other respects also.
Not a lot of difference, 5.56 are usually surplus military and have thicker case walls, that changes the internal volume of air space and produces hotter loads. Not allways the case but most of the time.

Shoulder of the 5.56 is slightly different and will not seal a 223 chamber correctly so there is a posibilty of gas coming back to the bolt and the shooters face. That is why they say you can use a 223 in a 5.56 barrel but not to use a 5.56 in a 223 barrel. However, if you have resized the 5.56 case with 223 dies and did it correctly, you should have a 223 case now that is marked 5.56. One of lifes little querks.

Jim
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Old July 23, 2011, 10:14 AM   #6
ragwd
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Thanks guys for taking the time to respond. So I did swag the primer pockets of all the cartridges with the + inside a circle. That designates military which usually means a primer crimp. I do have the 5.56 and the 223 separated because the 5.56 has a thicker wall which allows it less volume. So no one sorts further besides brand names? Weight not being a factor?
Roger to your point about case volume, do you sort by volume other than separating the 5.56 from the 223? If so how?
Or is this much ado about nothing?
Thanks again.
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Old July 23, 2011, 11:17 AM   #7
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I load my .223 brass up to "normal" .223 loads and my 5.56 about 10% lower to allow for the case capacity differences (10% was semi arbitrary decision, as I'm still working up loads). I do sort brass by headstamps, mostly to satisfy my OCD, no tests done to find any diff. yet. I have always used a 60 degree countersink to remove crimps; easy, cheap, and no problems after a whole bunch of 5.56 and 45 ACP...
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Old July 23, 2011, 02:45 PM   #8
Roger Ronas
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Hello ragwd,
I don't shoot those calibers and infact only shoot pistols now. paper punching.
My comments relate to some 25 years ago when I was shooting long guns and dabbling in Benchrest competition. Because of my OCD I would sort by HS and then volume to a point. Unless your shooting for big money or bragging rights, I really don't think the accuracy that you may gain from vol of case is going to matter. I would just know what vol are and make sure to snick up on loads as far as powders go.
I don't know anything about the .223/5.56 rounds, but the idea of resizing a 5.56 to work in a .223 would drive me bananas with a case that states 5.56 and is sized for a .223.
Take care and happy safe reloading,
Roger
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