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Old April 6, 2013, 11:40 PM   #1
swcc22
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So my buddy didnt trim

Ok a friend of mine is new to reloading and got some lc 556 brass.

So he was in a hurry and loaded 200 rds his col is with in spec.

I checked the rest of his cases and 50% need to be trimmed.

I told him he needed to unload the 200 rnds he already load and check and trim the others that need to be trimmed.

He says it will be fine because the col is with in spec who's right ill be ok if im wrong I just would like to know.

U never stop learning.

Last edited by swcc22; April 6, 2013 at 11:52 PM.
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Old April 7, 2013, 12:02 AM   #2
Marco Califo
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COAL is irrelevant

COAL is irrelevant. COAL is a measure of how deeply a bullet is seated; regardless of brass length.

The question you are asking is can out of spec brass cause a gun to blow up? In this caliber, 223/556 I say: No, I do not think so..

It may not be as accurate and pressures may vary, but the ammo shouldn't be dangerous to shoot. 223 brass does not stretch nearly as much as, for example, 308/7.62. In my experience, LC 223 rarely needs trimming. When you trim, you trim back to a consistent length: the trim to length. This is for consistency, and accuracy, more than for safety.

I use once fired LC 223 and do not bother to trim the first couple of loadings. I measure a few and then realize it doesn't really need it.

308 2.005 is trim to length. I do not feel a need to trim unless more than half are over 2.015 or any are over 2.020 and usually once fired military need it.

223 1.75 is trim to length. I do not feel a need to trim unless they are over 1.765 and usually once fired military do NOT need it.

Most people consider trimming to be an annoying chore. If they do need to trim, they trim past TTL by 0.005" to prolong the number of loadings until they need to trim again, if ever.
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Old April 7, 2013, 12:20 AM   #3
HiBC
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You,my friend,are stuck between a rock and a hard place.

A problem with over length brass,it gets ahead of its designed space in the chamber,it gets into the leade.The chamber is then squeezing the casemouth tight to the bullet.This will jump pressure,compromise accuracy,and it is bad practice.

So,you are right.

And,your buddy will probably....probably,go ahead and shoot them up without incident,maybe,unless he gas cuts his bolt face or burns his firing pin.Odds are good he'll have some loose primer pockets.

About all you can do is offer the best you have,then let it go.

Shoot your own
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Old April 7, 2013, 02:24 AM   #4
Dan Newberry
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In all likelihood, the brass will be shorter than the chamber length, which will make the rounds safe.

I think I'd check that, however.

There some some DIY ways to make a chamber length gauge, and alternately some fairly inexpensive rigs on the market. What you're wanting to find out is just how long the brass would need to be in order to "bottom out" in the chamber.

If the brass isn't more than .010" longer than SAAMI "trim to" says it should be, and the chamber is a standard cut chamber... I don't think there will be any issues at all.

If you know your rifle's chamber length, you don't have to trim the brass to "trim to" length every time... just trim when it gets within .005" or so of chamber length.

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Old April 7, 2013, 04:41 AM   #5
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Basically it is a gamble on your friend's part if he chooses not to trim the brass. Most rifles are probably not cut to minimum dimensions so if the neck extends past max case length a little bit it probably will not get wedged in the leade with the bullet causing the excessive pressure HiBC mentioned. But, specs are there for a reason.

You should not count on your rifle having a longer than minimum cut chamber/throat. Either measure it with a chamber casting, or trim to specifications. Forging ahead beyond specifications with no actual data about his rifle is gambling, and every time he reloads those cases and the neck gets longer his odds get slimmer. The sad thing is he may well get away with it once or twice, but eventually the necks will get too long and cause excessive pressure. But the first couple of see-I-told-you-it's-safe experiences will encourage him to keep ignoring reloading directions.

If that is his attitude I would never shoot his reloads in his or your rifle, I would not let him shoot his reloads in your rifle, and I would stand back a bit when he shoots them in his own rifle. Time is not on his side.
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Old April 7, 2013, 07:08 AM   #6
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Old April 7, 2013, 09:11 AM   #7
Jimro
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Your friend screwed up. He may have no issues at all because his chamber can handle it. Or it could disassemble his rifle and blind him on the first shot.

We won't know until he pulls the trigger.

I trim to minimum all the once fired 5.56 brass I buy so I don't have to trim it again before I chuck it.

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Old April 7, 2013, 09:15 AM   #8
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What do the cases measure??
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Old April 7, 2013, 09:28 AM   #9
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Amen, thump_rrr. Some reloaders have longer careers than others.

swcc22, what is the headspace dimension of your friend's rifle's chamber? What is the headspace dimension of the cartridges and cases in question? How do those two dimensions compare? What is the case length of the cartridges and cases in question? Do the cartridges chamber easily in his rifle? Is he loading for auto, semi-auto, bolt action or all of the above?
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Old April 7, 2013, 09:35 AM   #10
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Re: So my buddy didnt trim

Lol he has an ar15. He owns a lyman go no go gauge and I was sitting there talking and picked up a case and stuck it through it didnt fit so I grabbed another before I knew it I had separated all his cases
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Old April 7, 2013, 09:58 AM   #11
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Someone new to reloading missed a pretty important step in brass prep, that being checking the case length. You are a good friend to suggest he pull them down and re-assemble them correctly. This is a good example of why we who buy handloads only buy them for their components.
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Old April 7, 2013, 10:09 AM   #12
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Ron hit the magic question. How long are the cases? A SAAMI case neck at maximum is 0.2027" long, and a SAAMI chamber has a neck minimum length of 0.2201" for .223 Remington, or 0.0174" extra room. Clymer's chamber dimensions eschew the fourth decimal place and show 0.220" for .223 Remington, and 0.218" for 5.56 NATO chambers. So their chambers have an extra 15.3 to 17.3 thousandths for neck room. Hard chambering can set shoulders back several thousandths, and, given its light weight, I would expect a limit of maybe 5 thousandths in the .223/5.56 cartridge. So there should be at least 0.010" extra to play with.

Note that the risk as already described is jamming of the case mouth into the throat of a chamber, preventing normal bullet release and thus raising pressure. So COL has nothing to do with it. I know some of the old timers never trimmed and seemed to get away with it. If you have a chamber with a sharp corner at the end of the neck this may work for the same reason the RCBS X-die can keep cases from growing beyond a point, and that is by the end of the chamber neck pushing the case neck back. I am leery of trusting this, especially not with a ball throat which is tapered rather than having a sharp shoulder at the end of the neck. I have not experimented with this not only because of the safety concern, but because I go to some trouble to try to keep case necks straight for accuracy. Such a push back on the neck in the absence of a coaxially restrained mandrel inside an X-die, seems likely to tip the neck on the case body.

I would be extra careful to have enough room for the neck in the AR and other self-loading rifles with military type floating firing pins, as jamming a neck against the end of the chamber, even if it just pushed the neck back, increases risk of a slamfire.
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Old April 8, 2013, 03:32 PM   #13
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Listen to Unclenick!

Always trim once fired brass! The stuff grows the most on the first firing. I have never had once fired rifle brass that was not over length.*


* Statistically it is probable that I have had at least one case or two that were not overlength but my memory is not that good.
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Old April 8, 2013, 04:12 PM   #14
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I haven't done much reloading but when I do I methodically go over every case and size them. The manuals are there for a reason and if it say's do it I think it should be done. Reloading isn't there just to save money but it should be an enjoyable process and if someone finds part of it boring or skips parts to save time maybe they should just go and buy some factory loads !!!

It might save them a lot of pain in the long run

Jamie
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Old April 8, 2013, 09:17 PM   #15
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Or maybe rather than just expressing opinions, we offer data. For a minimal investment, you can buy a chamber length gage and determine the actual chamber length and what your maximum case length is. This would seem to be a better alternative to pulling bullets if that isn't necessary. You can buy it http://www.sinclairintl.com/reloadin...ku=749-000-811
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Old April 8, 2013, 10:08 PM   #16
swcc22
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Re: So my buddy didnt trim

Hey I told him to trim dont offer manuals and tools to me I have them.
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Old April 9, 2013, 07:34 AM   #17
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I guess I will repeat, What was his case length?

Last edited by steve4102; April 9, 2013 at 07:40 AM.
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Old April 9, 2013, 10:16 AM   #18
M1ke10191
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So my buddy didnt trim

I was lazy once and didn't check my brass length. Needless to say, the round fired but the case was stuck in my chamber and locked up my AR. It cost me $50 to not trim that case. Might have been 1.76x" if I had to guess. I figured "what's a thousandth of an inch going to affect?" The answer was my wallet.

Invested in a WFT for .223 afterwards.

-Mike

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Old April 9, 2013, 10:54 AM   #19
swcc22
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Re: So my buddy didnt trim

I wanna say his cases that I measured where between 1.760 and 1.762 most the ones u said where marginal where just under 1.760 prob 1.757-59

Last edited by swcc22; April 9, 2013 at 11:00 AM.
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Old April 9, 2013, 10:59 AM   #20
Brian Pfleuger
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1.73-1.76 would make sense, 1.1xxx doesn't make sense.

SAAMI max for .223Rem is 1.7598.

If the cases were at 1.76, they could theoretically be dangerous. It would be uwnwise to use them.
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Old April 9, 2013, 11:37 AM   #21
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If he is shooting out of a milspec chamber, fire away. Milspec chambers are VERY forgiving concerning brass length. They are not precision chambers by any stretch of the imagination.

Now if your buddy's chamber is something like a Wylde or Match chamber, then you are talking a different animal.

I, and several buddies of mine, have fired umpteen thousand rounds out of AR's and I guarantee you that we didn't trim each and every round.
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Old April 9, 2013, 11:49 AM   #22
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Measuring and trimming is a necessary safty proceedure.

Snake
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Old April 9, 2013, 12:12 PM   #23
swcc22
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Re: So my buddy didnt trim

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Pfleuger View Post
1.73-1.76 would make sense, 1.1xxx doesn't make sense.

SAAMI max for .223Rem is 1.7598.

If the cases were at 1.76, they could theoretically be dangerous. It would be uwnwise to use them.
Yes sorry I added an extra 1 I ment 1.76x
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Old April 9, 2013, 05:30 PM   #24
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Scmelba99,

If you looked at my dimensions, neck length is one spot where the SAAMI chamber is slightly (0.002") longer. NATO chambers are looser in headspace and diameter, though.
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Old April 9, 2013, 05:48 PM   #25
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Quote:
I wanna say his cases that I measured where between 1.760 and 1.762 most the ones u said where marginal where just under 1.760 prob 1.757-59
Although I would trim my brass at this point, I would not pull any bullets or suggest to a fellow handloader that he must pull his bullets at this case length.

Yes it's true SAAMI says that 1.760 is Max case length, but that doesn't mean that a case a few thou over is going to be dangerous and cause a problem or even a KB. There is a fudge factor here.

This document shows the dimensions of several 223 and 5.56 chamber reamers. Note the Base-to-case mouth (K) is 1.772 or more except for one Match reamer which I doubt your buddy has.

In reality he still has over .010 before his case length become an issue.

http://ar15barrels.com/data/223-556.pdf
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