The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > Handloading, Reloading, and Bullet Casting

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old November 14, 2007, 07:17 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: October 27, 2007
Posts: 11
How many reloads can I expect from my brass?

Quick question...provided careful inspection of the brass, what would be the typical lifespan of 9mm and .40 brass, respectively? I have a mixed lot of Winchester and CCI brass in each caliber.
acs62c is offline  
Old November 15, 2007, 01:11 PM   #2
50 shooter
Senior Member
Join Date: August 6, 2002
Location: SoCal PRK
Posts: 701
Handgun brass will usually last until it splits and dosen't have the same issues as rifle brass. You still need to do all the same inspections but most people will keep using it until it fails. When it comes to rifle brass most people will toss it after about 3 reloadings.

Depending on the how much you work rifle brass, how hot you make your loads, if you anneal... You can get more then 3 reloads, just depends on the brass and how much you're willing to chance a failure in your rifle. YMMV just be sure to be vigilant in your inspection of it.
I see the world thru bloodshot eyes
Streets filled with blood from distant lies
The dogs of war never compromise,
No time for rearranging.
50 shooter is online now  
Old November 15, 2007, 02:46 PM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: January 8, 2006
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 517
If you shoot a bolt action rifle and neck size only, not using max loads, your brass can last a very long time, more than 10 reloads. Annealing also helps a lot. Semi autos will tear it up faster, and you also work it more when you full length size. Depending on caliber, you can probably get around 5-7 reloads for a semi-auto.
rgitzlaff is offline  
Old November 15, 2007, 04:53 PM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 5,075
typical lifespan of 9mm
Darn near indefinate. The life span of your 9mm brass is determined by the height of the grass, how hard the soles of your boot, and when the case mouth cracks.

I have 9mm nickel brass that I did not loose in the weeds, did not crush by stepping on them, that have been reloaded enough times that the nickel is almost worn down to the brass. I have no idea how many times the stuff has been through the progressive.

Just shoot it, clean it, reload it.
Slamfire is offline  
Old November 15, 2007, 06:39 PM   #5
Senior Member
Join Date: June 4, 2007
Location: Upstate SC
Posts: 1,943
As long as you aren't shooting a Glock, you can expect to be shooting the same brass for years. I personally loaded some WW brass 38s 21x and only lost 6 out of 100 cases due to neck splits. The load was 5.0 of Unique and 150 gr. RCBS cast SWCs. They got very polished by the sizer die, and I trimmed them 4 times total. The primer pockets were a little loose, but every one still held the primer tight enough to fire the first hit. That is a personal best, and I bought the stuff as new ammo. If you keep the cases clean and use a carbide sizer, who knows? Nickel cases will load up the sizer with nickel, and you may have to polish it out, and nickel cases don't seem to last as long. I have some 22/250 brass that has been reloaded 12x, and the primer pockets are still tight. The load is 37.0 of H380, CCI 250 primer, and a Sierra 55 gr. BTSP. I backed the sizer out about 1/4 turn and set the lock ring. It barely sets the shoulder back enough to chamber with just a little effort. Accuracy is superb with many 5 shot 1 hole groups at 100 yds. CB.
If you want your children to follow in your footsteps, be careful where you walk.
Beware the man that only owns one gun; he probably knows how to use it.
I just hope my ship comes in before my dock rots.
crowbeaner is offline  
Old November 15, 2007, 09:10 PM   #6
Senior Member
Join Date: December 14, 2004
Location: Northern Indiana
Posts: 6,117

I have 44 special brass that have been loaded 15 or more times. The big thing that I have found is that you bell the cases as little as possible. The more you stretch the cases the shorter the life span. It does make it a little harder to start the bullet but case life increases.
With autos I have found that as long as you use a taper crimp die they also increase in life. For autos I usually find that the life is more with the base of the case. Autos are hard on cases with the extractors.
Ozzieman is offline  
Old November 15, 2007, 11:36 PM   #7
Senior Member
Join Date: May 13, 2006
Location: WA, the left armpit of the USA
Posts: 1,323
I have some 9mm brass that can remember when Ronnie Reagan was figurehead, oops I mean president.
"If the enemy is in range, so are you." - Infantry Journal
amamnn is offline  
Old November 15, 2007, 11:54 PM   #8
Senior Member
Join Date: June 7, 1999
Posts: 3,844
Pistol brass (9mm and 45 ACP) seems to last forever, though hot hot you load would no doubt effect case life, vis-a-vis loosened primer pockets.

Re rifle brass, when I was shooting a Garand (30-06) using range pick-up Match Brass, I used to get 20 firings. Using Match Brass, once fired, in bolt guns, even with full length sizing, I got tired of counting, besides I had a lot of brass, courtesy of the USCM at Quantico, back when the marines were still shooting M-14's in competition.

Re 38 Special, brass cases seemed to last longer than nickel, or so it seemed. Either way, they lasted a long time.
alan is offline  

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:39 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2017 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent:
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.09888 seconds with 9 queries