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Old December 9, 2017, 03:56 PM   #1
RC20
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Marking Brass With Fingernail Polish

I have been working on color coding my reloading stuff.

My wife suggested Fingernail polish as she has quite a collection that is used for art work

I though it might work for marking cases, so I tried it on a run that was getting polished.

I marked the backs, primer pocket and just ahead of the rim in the recess.

It does hold up nicely under tumbling, I would guess not under wet cleaning and the pins.

That said I expect the back to work off, but just forward of the rim seems to hold promise.

It looks like after Xmas before I get to try a run of reloaded ones.
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Old December 10, 2017, 09:46 AM   #2
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Is the color coding for easy caliber identification, or times fired, or ??
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Old December 10, 2017, 09:52 AM   #3
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You can do that, but I just write on the cartridge case with a Sharpie.
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Old December 10, 2017, 11:30 AM   #4
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Quote:
Is the color coding for easy caliber identification, or times fired, or ??
In this case (pun) its playing with ID for a couple of reason.

If I introduce a new batch of identical mfg, I want to be able to segment them out so I know what era they are from.

I may use it to ID that all cases in a batch have been annealed.

Dies I am working on color coincide gfor quick ID. I swap them aroudn a lot and its easier to have them in a pan.

Thuen the bullet OGVIE adapro and the case shoulder adpaor are ncie to color code.

Shell holders as well.



444: My problem with the sharpies is I marked case ends and the tumbling wore it right off.

The nail polish has stuck so far, I will see what firing does in regards to machine off the polish or if it stays on and how many tumbling's it lasts. .

Under the rim may work out better for not getting removed .

Tumbling did not remove the polish at least on this round.
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Old December 10, 2017, 12:35 PM   #5
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I think marking the extractor groove is your best bet for lasting, unmolested. I used to mark .45 Auto brass on the head with Magic Markers to ID it for recovery at matches. There, you can't count on the other shooters to look in the groove while policing their brass. However, while that marking held up to firing well enough for one event, it not only tumbled off, but left a good bit on the breech face of the gun that had to be removed with solvent later. You may find the same thing.

I had good luck marking brass with a small automatic center punch with the handle unscrewed until the indentation it made was very light. I added a punch mark at every reloading.
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Old December 10, 2017, 12:55 PM   #6
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Another good thought.

I had thought of a vibrator maker but that is not very good control.

Have to see if I have a center punch these days!
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Old December 10, 2017, 01:04 PM   #7
Don Fischer
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I have a Mossberg Patriot in 243 and a Mod 700 in 243. The 700 get's fingernail polish over the primer. Nothing around the case neck and for working up loads, a sharpie tells me what charge in in the case!
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Old December 10, 2017, 02:01 PM   #8
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When doing load testing and loading the ammo at home I use Sharpies to color code the primers and base of the case. Red = 22.3 of Varget, Blue = 22.5 of Varget , Green = H4895 or whatever and I do the same thing when testing seating depths. Just makes things easier if for some reason the cases get jumbled together. Enough stays on after shooting so you can still identify the case's load for close inspections back at the shop
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Old December 10, 2017, 08:45 PM   #9
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When I dry tumble cases in walnut media, I start the tumbler in the morning when I leave for work and shut it off when I get home again, so the tumbling time is around 8 hours. In general, neither fingernail polish marks nor Sharpie marker markings last long in that environment.

If you need your marks to simply survive from one loading until you segregate the brass after shooting at the start of the next reloading phase, either fingernail polish or Sharpie should work. If you need it to survive permanently, use a Sharpie and limit tumbling time.
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Old December 11, 2017, 03:47 PM   #10
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I do the same but often 12 hours.

The nail polish did perfectly fine through that.

What it does when the case fires and pushes against the bolt head is ?
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Old December 11, 2017, 08:14 PM   #11
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When working up loads I'll load up 5 each at different powder charges and simply write the powder charge on the cases with a sharpie. Once I settle on a load no the load data goes on the box.

I could be wrong, but nail polish might be thick enough to cause feeding and ejection problems.
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Old December 12, 2017, 07:30 AM   #12
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Considering the "thickness" of a dab of nail polish, many of my rifles would not chamber the "marked" rounds.
For testing purposes, I write on the cases with a Sharpie. After loading, I only use labels on the storage containers.
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Old December 25, 2017, 02:17 PM   #13
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I use nail polish for blacking out headstamps of reformed 06 to 270 cases, then of course mark the boxes. Not too much to effect headspace. Been working fine, but they are short.
I know some say use a Dremel or punch mark, but the polish holds up
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Old December 25, 2017, 02:20 PM   #14
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Also good for marking some old WRA 06 cases. I have some that are from 1928!
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Old December 25, 2017, 03:47 PM   #15
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I will do some measuring. Pretty thin.

I run a tight chamber but not that tight.
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