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Old October 6, 2012, 10:39 PM   #1
Polinese
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Steel Case ammo

I dont want to beat a dead horse as I know steel cased is discussed alot however I couldn't really find a answer to my question. Wanted to stockpile some ammo and obviously russian steel is much cheaper. It'll be almost exclusively shot out of a savage bolt gun... anyone know of any actual problems resulting from shooting steel rather than brass cased in a bolt action?

If it matters, i'm also looking at the american eagle 308 150gr which I've used before with pretty decent results (usually around 1 moa) but its about twice the cost.
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Old October 6, 2012, 11:27 PM   #2
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Quote:
anyone know of any actual problems resulting from shooting steel rather than brass cased in a bolt action?
Only thing I can think of offhand is that some have reported that some Steel case ammo that was intended for use with LMGs has a laquer coating that when it got hot from sitting in an already hot chamber would soften , and after the chamber and laquer cooled it would glue the case solidly in the chamber. Getting the case out after the chamber cooled was quite an undertaking.
I believe this was mentioned as a common problem with some German made 7.62 Nato LMG ammo that had been de-linked. That particular laquer coating may be why the ammo was sold off as surplus. It would cause no real problem in guns that fire from an open bolt, but could jam up a G3 pretty easily and/or fill in the chamber flutes to further hinder smooth extraction.

On the upside some long range target shooters have experimented with making cartridge cases with a brass body and a steel casehead, to allow use of chamber pressures that might make a brass casehead cold flow.

I don't think a steel case would be totally immune to casehead cracking, but its unlikely to cold flow at any sane chamber pressure.
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Old October 7, 2012, 03:45 AM   #3
Metal god
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Should not have a problem shooting the ammo . There is some talk out there that cus steel case ammo does not seal the chamber as well as brass .You can get some blow back in to the chamber of carbon and case finishes . This can build up in your chamber and cause extraction issues . This seems to be more relevant with semi auto's then bolts cus they tend to get hotter do to the higher rate of fire .It also seems to be more of an issue if you switch quickly from steel to brass . Make sure you clean your chamber really well after shooting

I would buy both . I would have the steel stuff for others or to sell and keep the brass stuff for my family and I . If your talking about rainy day/ sh*t hits the fan type of stock pile I would slowly build up the good stuff .

Im just not sure if TSHTF I would bet my life on steel ammo . My friends and neighbors can use steel but for my home and family , I'll stick with the brass .

I would do some shelf life research on both aswell . How to store long term . I hade a few hundred rounds sitting in my basement for 17 years I forgot about . I took it out to the range a few months ago and it all worked fine . I was very surprised .

I was talking to a friend about the 17 year old ammo . He sggested how ever I stored that ammo is how I should store all my ammo . The funny thing about that is .It was just in a plastic bag in a old tool box . No seals no anti moister packs nothing just sitting there . My basement must be a cool dry place
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Last edited by Metal god; October 7, 2012 at 04:01 AM.
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Old October 9, 2012, 02:27 PM   #4
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Steel case can be hard on extractors. Steel cases don't retract as much as brass so if there is a mismatch between chamber and cartridge you can get sticky extraction.

The basic problem I have with steel case rifle ammunition is that it is too difficult for me to reload.
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Old October 9, 2012, 02:39 PM   #5
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The basic problem I have with steel case rifle ammunition is that it is too difficult for me to reload.
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Old October 10, 2012, 03:09 PM   #6
seansean1444
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should be fine out of a bolt gun, try a couple boxes and see how it runs for ya
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Old October 11, 2012, 12:48 AM   #7
Polinese
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One of the big things I hear about is wearing out extractors faster, is that still a problem in bolt guns which generally have wimpy extractors. I shot a couple boxes of tulammo out of my savage a while back seemed to work pretty good but can't remember how they grouped. And I know at least one box was fired with a busted scope.
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Old October 13, 2012, 10:36 PM   #8
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For your Stock Pile Ammo Steel Case should be fine.
I shoot quiet a bit of it out of my Bolt Actions, but they are Mausers, its kind of hard to screw up a Mauser.
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Old October 14, 2012, 01:11 PM   #9
Polinese
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Yea that was my main worry is wearing out my extractor, I always hear steel will wear it out faster, of course how much faster that is could be negligible (also unlikely to ever actually be a problem). I really want to get a mauser 98 style action but that'll have to wait a bit.
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Old October 14, 2012, 01:34 PM   #10
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The only problem I have ever encountered with the steel cased ammunition is when it is fired the steel case does not form to the chamber as easily as brass, so there is more carbon in the chamber, this can cause extraction failures if you let it get too dirty. I have fired a few hundred rounds in a single session witout an issue.

It may be steel cased but it is much softer than any of the parts in a firearm, including extractors, you will have to fire one heck of alot of steel cased ammo to wear out an extractor.
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Old October 14, 2012, 01:40 PM   #11
Polinese
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Thanks for the info everyone. I used to fire it a bit and don't remember ever having issues other than the tulammo was sometimes a tighter fit when closing the bolt than some other cheap brass but never saw that as a big issue. I'm going to be upgrading my extractor soon as well so that should further mitigate any problems.
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