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Old December 27, 2013, 07:49 PM   #1
AL45
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Keeping track of number of reloads

Do you guys keep track of how many times your brass is reloaded? I try to do this but is it really necessary?
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Old December 27, 2013, 07:52 PM   #2
jwrowland77
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I don't with pistol brass, but with rifle yes.

I just keep a batch together and throw a old business card in the box/bag/bin with how many times those cases have been reload on it.
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Old December 27, 2013, 08:59 PM   #3
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I keep my brass in either 50 or 100 count boxes. Put a piece of masking tape on cover. Everytime I load I put a hash mark on tape. Works great.

Very important to keep track of load count. Bad things can happen with old brass. I like my eyes and fingers where they are
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Old December 27, 2013, 09:54 PM   #4
Peter M. Eick
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Yes, I keep track for the simple fact that I am starting to see case splits on my starline 38 special at 21 reloads. Some early splits occured on the 13th reload but now I am getting a lot at 21. Teaches you the value of good brass. CBC tends to case neck split on about the 7th reload give or take a few.


Its not that hard to keep track. Just segregate it, label it and keep decent records.
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Old December 28, 2013, 09:51 AM   #5
tangolima
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I trim and anneal my rifle brass every 5 firings, so yes I keep track of number of firings. Not so much for pistol brass though. I don't trim nor anneal them.

-TL
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Old December 28, 2013, 10:28 AM   #6
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I do with all my brass. I separate them into gallon sized ziplock bags marked with the number of firings.
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Old December 28, 2013, 06:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
SWThomas said: I do with all my brass. I separate them into gallon sized ziplock bags marked with the number of firings.
This,
I also attach masking tape with notes if they have been flashhole de-burred (FHD), neck turned (NT), primer pocket reamed (PPR). I only reload for rifle.
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Old December 28, 2013, 07:29 PM   #8
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I've been loading for 37 years and I used to keep track of the number of reloads, but I gave it up. When the primer pocket accepts a primer too easily, toss that case. Just fire it in your rifle to get rid of it. When you see a crack in the neck, toss that case. If you missed the subtlety of the crack in the head and it splits when you fire, pay more attention when you reload and toss the ones that look like they have a stress fracture that might split.
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Old December 28, 2013, 09:52 PM   #9
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I assign each group I load (50-200) a lot number, and I have a notebook log with every component listed, and brass description and number of times loaded. The only ones I have trouble tracking is 9mm for all the obvious reasons, and because a friend of mine shoots a lot of them, and saves the brass all in one big box.
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Old December 29, 2013, 12:58 AM   #10
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So far I do. I only reload in small batches considering I work a lot of weekends and don't get as much time to shoot. I use the original factory box (when available, otherwise I buy a cartridge box) and attach a load label. Once I run out of the labels I'llprobably do something like was mentioned above . But its a great policy. Will really help you track the life of different manufacturers brass.
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Old December 29, 2013, 01:45 PM   #11
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I wanted to and even tried... like a billion years ago. Bleeccccchhh. Forget it.

If I were an active rifle guy, I might. Might. But in handgun, which is 98% of what I do? Ludicrous. Far too much nonsense for almost no payoff whatsoever. The biggest hurdle in my experience is that I need to keep each little group of loaded (then fired) brass separate. Gotta tumble "that" batch of brass separate from other batches of brass? Uhhh, no thanks. Gotta store that little supply of brass separate from other brass in a container clearly marked "this stuff has been loaded six times" ?! Hahaha, no way, man, not happening.

I burn excessive amounts of time keeping a really detailed log of all my loading, shooting, buying, round counts on guns and personal range notes and notes on handloads and how they've performed. There's no place in my schedule for keeping a ziplog bag of fifty pieces of .38 because that particular bag has been shot eight times and I am afraid to accidentally mix it with a bag of 50 that has been shot six times.

Many folks think I'm nutty simply because all of my ammo wears the same head stamp. Even a box of run-of-the-mill 9mm range fodder is ALWAYS wearing the same head stamp, which means I've burned time & energy sorting all of my 9mm (which says nothing about the other dozen chamberings I load...) So it's not like I can't find the time to do something that I consider important. I can, and I do. And I do it awfully well.

Keeping a round count on handgun brass? That's a waste of my precious time. If it works for the next guy, I support his methods 100% for his needs.
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Old December 29, 2013, 02:02 PM   #12
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@sevens I have to agree with the pistol brass. Even though I don't have much of any flavor I have too much handgun brass to keep track of. It all gets tumbled together. Just too much work. My previous post was regarding rifle brass. I only have 2-4 boxes per caliber. Very easy to keep track of considering they are mostly all different headstamps. I only load a box or two at a time. So in that sense its worth while to do.
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Old December 29, 2013, 02:18 PM   #13
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I do for rifle, not so much for handgun. Helps me know when to do things like anneal the necks.

Quote:
I also attach masking tape with notes if they have been flashhole de-burred (FHD), neck turned (NT), primer pocket reamed (PPR). I only reload for rifle.
To keep track of all the various actions I do on my rifle brass and keep track of number of loadings I came up with the record form shown below. I print them on cardstock and keep them with the brass. The first image is for the brass, the second image is for the load. I keep them with the brass and it records what I want to know.



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Old December 29, 2013, 02:26 PM   #14
Don P
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My opinion a waste of time with regards to handgun brass. Most I have found is the brass has split from use and the primer pockets will no longer hold a primer in place.
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Old December 29, 2013, 08:52 PM   #15
AL45
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While I do keep track, I inspect EVERY piece of brass with a magnifying glass. My thoughts are, it doesn't matter how many times it has been reloaded, if it looks good and holds a primer, I will continue to reload it. Am I wrong?
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Old December 29, 2013, 09:10 PM   #16
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AL45- With pistol brass you could most of the time get away with it. With rifle brass you cold be getting yourself in a very dangerous situation. Case separation is not a good thing. The primer pockets and case neck can be good,but that is not the scary part.
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Old December 29, 2013, 09:22 PM   #17
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Quote:
I've been loading for 37 years and I used to keep track of the number of reloads, but I gave it up. When the primer pocket accepts a primer too easily, toss that case. Just fire it in your rifle to get rid of it. When you see a crack in the neck, toss that case. If you missed the subtlety of the crack in the head and it splits when you fire, pay more attention when you reload and toss the ones that look like they have a stress fracture that might split.
Pretty much how I've been doing it for about the same amount of time.
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Old December 29, 2013, 11:03 PM   #18
AL45
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4runnerman, in regards to case head separation, I have read to look for a ring around the outside of the case and that you can check the inside of the case using a bent paper clip and sliding it up the inside of the case and feeling for a groove. Will this outer ring always appear when disaster is near, or should all rifle brass be tossed after the roughly 6 loads, regardless of appearance?
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Old December 30, 2013, 06:05 AM   #19
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AL45- You are spot on about checking inside case when you start getting up in count. I am not sure if ring on outside will appear all the time. Getting rid of cases after 6 loadings is a little extreme ( but very safe ). Case life depends on so many different things. I don't think you can put a number on it. Best to monitor it as you have described and be safe. For me, I get about 12 loads out of my 308 cases before they get thrown away. My 243 maybe 10. My 6 BR I will swap out every 8 loads. I keep the old ones for practice,but not in matches any more. The rest,223,22-250,7-08, I just check Everytime before I load. My 223, I dont think I will ever have to load a case twice. I actually have 6000 that I am sending out Mail this weekend to a customer.
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Old December 31, 2013, 08:45 AM   #20
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You need a pretty sensitive manual dexterity to detect the ring inside the case with a bent paperclip. Maybe if the tip of the clip is filed to a fine point it would be better. I wasn't sure if I was feeling the ring or not so I finally resorted to sawing the case in half to see if there was a ring. There was, but I couldn't feel it. So I looked closely at the outside with a magnifying glass and now I feel confident when I see a faint line in the head area I am pretty sure that's a case working its way to split. Sometimes, if the line is not real evident I might load and fire it to see if that line got worse, and it usually does, thus confirming that I do know what I'm looking at. That case either gets tossed or is used as a dummy for seating purposes.
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Old December 31, 2013, 10:14 AM   #21
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I used MTM 50 round boxes for my loaded ammo. I put a blank computer label on the outside and date the most recent reload. But, I have found keeping track pointless. I examine every round and if splits show up I discard the split ones and anneal the rest. Most of my loading has been .44 mag. and 30-06. I found them to be almost ageless. Those who discard after a certain number of reloads are being wasteful. These days that is a very expensive waste.
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Old December 31, 2013, 12:54 PM   #22
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Pistol brass - No.
.223/5.56 brass - No.
.308/7.62 brass - No.

All of the above is dumped into cat litter plastic tubs until I get the urge to process that tub. (I do separate .40s from .45s and .44s in ZipLock bags - they tend to nest.)

I shoot so little 30-06 and .375 H&H that they don't have a cat litter box [].

I do .300 AAC Blackouts in 30 round test batches and each batch is processed and loaded with what ever the next test may be. I keep records of each and can count the progressions. The big problem with this is my Blackout brass is re-cycled .223/5.56 brass from my scrap brass box and I have no idea how many times each case was loaded before it was pitched.
So, I may be able to count some loadings of brass, those counts don't carry any value.

I 'always' check the web area on bottle necked brass, it is just part of the processing steps I follow. Just like trimming (every time - needed or not - I am OCD).

However, if I were loading for extreme precision or some over boar round, I would (and have) kept brass records.

Load with care,

OSOK
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Old January 1, 2014, 11:45 PM   #23
Colorado Redneck
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Case head separation

This one was close to failure. The pic's are the same case, from two different sides. It's 22-250 and probably has been loaded 10 or more times. Needless to say, I have NOT kept count for all of the reasons---too darn complicated and time consuming. Some old brass I inherited started showing these rings, and of course they went to the trash can. Using a paper clip I have checked the empties from time to time. This experience may change my technique. Brass is in tight supply right now so it is not very attractive to just toss all of it and start new.
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File Type: jpg Case Head Separation 009.JPG (72.2 KB, 18 views)
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