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Old November 27, 1999, 02:21 AM   #1
Join Date: August 18, 1999
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While buying a box of .38 Special cartridges today, the clerk handing them over said that I should buy PMC brand, because they provided the best brass for reloading. I have heard such things said about rifle brass, in terms of case wall thicknesses, number of reloads, and just the fit in a particular rifle's chamber. Do any of these, or other factors, apply to pistol brass?

I don't reload now, having thought I wouldn't shoot enough to justify it. That has changed as I seem to have developed a serious four-box-per-week habit. I shoot primarily .45 ACP, 230 gr. FMJs, and .38/.357s, 125 gr. JHPs. Should I be buying specific inexpensive store-bought loads now, toward that day soon when I start to reload?

Your help is appreciated.
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Old November 27, 1999, 09:45 AM   #2
Joe D
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I reload any brass I can find for the .45 as it is a low pressure round. It is hard to wear out .45 brass. I have noticed a certain brand of 9mm that is .001" thicker than the rest. Seems like it was the IVI brand. If you were loading 9mm to the max. with normal brass the IVI case, with its reduced volume, might cause problems. When I shot .357s Federal worked well. In general most brass is OK.
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Old November 27, 1999, 08:25 PM   #3
Join Date: October 1, 1999
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I have not found any brass that I did not like. If it is reloadable I would reload it,BUT I would try to use the same brand for a specific load just for safty sake.Some brass will have a different wall thickness which changes the amount of space inside thus different pressure. Safe pressure is a must.
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Old November 27, 1999, 09:25 PM   #4
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All the commercial brass I use reloads just great with the exception of Fiocci. I have a terrible time seating a primer in a Fiocci brass case.....they appear to have some sort of crimp (actually 3) around the primer pocket.

Military brass is also great but then there is the extra step in removing the primer crimp.

Hope this helps, Mikey

Retired, Broke, and In Need of Brass, Powder, and Shot. Will Work To Shoot!

[This message has been edited by TheOtherMikey (edited November 27, 1999).]
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Old November 28, 1999, 08:47 AM   #5
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W-W, R-P, IMI, Starline, Federal, Norma.

"All my ammo is factory ammo"

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Old November 28, 1999, 01:29 PM   #6
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On several other gun-related boards that I frequent, PMC accounts for more reports of failures than all other brands combined. I'd 86 any PMC brass that I run across.

Shoot to kill; they'll stop when they're dead!
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Old December 11, 1999, 05:14 PM   #7
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My $0.02 ---

I carry factory PMC/Eldorado StarFire ammo in several of my handguns. I have reloaded much PMC brass (plain & nickel-plated) without any problems.

In .45ACP, I've found R-P (Remington) to not accept a taper crimp as well as other brands (assume the R-P is thinner walled and doesn't resize enough to hold the bullet tightly). I sell/trade it whenever possible.
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Old December 12, 1999, 07:37 AM   #8
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I've had the same problem as Texas Lawman with the RP brass in 45. The bullets are too loose on many of the reloads, where the crimp is plenty tite with other brands. I have run into this on some S&B brass too, but not nearly as often.

Good shootin to ya
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Old December 12, 1999, 11:20 AM   #9
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If I were buying factory ammo with an eye towards saving the brass for later reloading, I'd buy the white box WW stuff. Avoid nickel plated cases like the plague - they scratch even carbide sizer dies. I load military WCC 45 brass - it's nearly identical to WW except for the crimp, and will last for many, many reloads.
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Old December 12, 1999, 01:34 PM   #10
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flatlander is right about the WCC brass. i've got some that been shot so many times the head stamp is fading (getting hammered smooth). sundog

safety first
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Old December 12, 1999, 01:52 PM   #11
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There are definitely some bad 9mm casings out there. Specifically, after I shot a factory batch of American Ammunition (the stuff that comes in a clear package made in Miami, FL), and later cleaned them to reload, I found that probably 80% of the cases had a hairline crack around near the bottom of the case. Not only that, but probably 50% also had WAY offcenter primer holes. HAd to trash the lot. DON'T buy this stuff if you intend to reload. It shot well enough for me, but is not reusable.
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Old December 12, 1999, 03:24 PM   #12
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FLATLANDER, how can 'soft' nickel plated cases scratch tungsten carbide dies? TC is almost as hard as diamond. I've reloaded nickel plated cases for 24 years and have noticed no difference in its performance as compared to plain brass. In fact, I prefer nickel cause I can find it in the grass easier than brass cases. If you tumble-clean the cases before reloading I don't see how scratching your sizing die can be of concern. Maybe I missed something???
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Old December 13, 1999, 03:27 PM   #13
Bill Hebert
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I agree with Fusternc - the ammo he mentioned is marketed as AMERC brand here. It's garbage.
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Old December 13, 1999, 03:54 PM   #14
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In 45 ACP paramilitary ammunition, WW makes the best brass. Rem UMC is second. Federal, forget about reloading it. It is tapered differently inside and won't allow bullet seating to the same depth as WW or REM UMC. I pitch Federal in the trash. YMMV

Be mentally deliberate but muscularly fast. Aim for just above the belt buckle Wyatt Earp
45 ACP: Give 'em a new navel! BigG
"It is error alone that needs government support; truth can stand by itself." Tom Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1785

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