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Old September 15, 2010, 04:31 PM   #1
Join Date: September 7, 2010
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Counting times fired

I've been reloading now for a couple of months (I think I'm on my third 1000 primers), and have been tracking number of reloads by marks on the head of each cartridge, but wonder if it's worth the trouble.

I only seem to collect about half the brass I shoot at the range. When I get it home, I sort it by my head marks, clean each batch separately (removing the old mark), mark them with the new count, and mix the batches together for reloading.

When I only recover a handful that were fired 3 times, for example, I throw them in a ziploc bag, hoping to eventually accumulate enough to be worth cleaning.

Is it worth this trouble if I inspect the cases? I promise not to sue anybody if I take your advise and hurt myself.

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Old September 15, 2010, 04:42 PM   #2
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More trouble than it's worth imo...

I check my brass for splits and excess bulges that could be indicative of a possible failure, and if they're good to go, they get loaded.

I don't know how many times you can re-load the same case, but it has been my experience that I will lose the case long before it ever needs to be "retired".
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Old September 15, 2010, 05:08 PM   #3
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Its worth it. When I go to the range I look for rifle brass that is good enough to be cleaned and used. Most of it is once fired. I've saved a few dollars that way.
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Old September 15, 2010, 05:46 PM   #4
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I do not mark the cases but I do track the times reloaded by box. Each box is labled with the number of times reloaded.
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Old September 15, 2010, 06:21 PM   #5
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No its not worth it ....especially on handgun ammo ( but you didn't say if you were asking about handguns or rifle ammo ).

I do keep a "reloading log" loaded, recipe, bullet, powder, primer etc ...and I put that date on the boxes as I box them up. But I don't make any effort to keep track of brass that I shoot ....vs whatever I sweep up at the range ....

I was at the range yesterday for about 2 hours ....and I shot about 300 rds ...but I came home with a one gallon plastic bag full of brass ( there were a couple of police officers in there / shooting 9mm and .40S&W ) and I was very happy to clean up their lanes after they left.

Everything I collect - in terms of brass - gets sorted by caliber -- then goes into the tumbler to be cleaned. After its clean / I inspect it for dents, cracks, etc .... and sort it into a "cleaned and sorted" tub by caliber. At that point, I just use spray lube on it / dump it in the case feeder and load em up. My last QC check / is to use a case gague ...dropping each round in and out ... this is where you'll catch any burrs on case or small cracks that opened up after you seated the bullet. If it sticks going in or out of a case gague / the bullet gets pulled --- I reclaim components ...and toss the brass out.

Even sweeping up "range leavings" ... I only reject a few out of a 1,000 rds or so usually.
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Old September 15, 2010, 06:23 PM   #6
Uncle Buck
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For me, it is not worth it. Right now I am only shooting straight walled pistol and some of these are on the ninth reload. (I look at the number of empty primer boxers and divide that by the number of shells I have for reloading. )

I also reload the 30-30 and .243, but like others mention, I inspect each case before I reload it and when I am shooting these reloads I make notes about how they perform.

I make my life complicated enough, tracking shells is one complication I do not need.
Inside Every Bright Idea Is The 50% Probability Of A Disaster Waiting To Happen.
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Old September 15, 2010, 06:47 PM   #7
Join Date: September 7, 2010
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Thanks, guys.

After another post or two, maybe I'll remember to mention that I'm reloading a variety of handgun calibers (9, .38spl, .357, 40 45ACP, 45Colt), and I'm loading them on the light end.
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Old September 15, 2010, 07:52 PM   #8
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autos no , load it & check it in the chamber , as said you`ll probably lose it before it splits !!!

Revolvers shoot it till it splits.

My target brass & huntin brass I keep notes on , plinkin brass no ,it goes till it splits .I mostly shoot intermediate loads & I have revolver brass that I started with in`82.

Last edited by GP100man; September 15, 2010 at 07:55 PM. Reason: one fanger types faster than da udder one & spelun
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Old September 15, 2010, 09:04 PM   #9
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Years ago I used to keep careful track of my reloads, but eventually I became convinced it was a waste of time. I have been shooting the same batch of .38 specials for years and I would estimate they have been reloaded at least 20 times. When I start getting split cases or bulges I will simply dump the whole batch and start all over again with new ones. I don't bother picking up the 9mm cases since I have a source where I can get once fired Remington cases for $10 per thousand.
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Old September 15, 2010, 09:46 PM   #10
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i reload only 45 auto and i don't even bother tracking how many times. i have shells that i know are years and years old that i pick up from the range to refill my box. my dad found one shell that had a crack down from the top of the shell down to where the ejector grabs it. he caught and it had to have been reloaded hot(which i don't do ever) and we must have picked it up from the range
1. The gun is always loaded.
2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
3. Keep your finger off the trigger unless you are ready to shoot.
4. Be be sure of your target and what is beyond it.
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Old September 16, 2010, 09:09 AM   #11
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Worth it for bottleneck rifle, No way for pistol.

I go 2 loadings and out with my rifle. I use a sharpie and mark a band around the case body for each loading. After two bands, they hit the recycle bucket.
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brass inspection , newbie

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