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Old January 29, 2012, 09:36 PM   #1
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Sorting brass, a win-win deal...

What do you get when you have a heap of brass, a bored teenager, and a twenty dollar bill?

This....(here she's sorting .45 ACP, but has done other chamberings)

.....ends up as this!!

I give her a penny a piece to sort it by manufacturer and to cull any chambering that doesn't belong. When she did the 6.5X55 she found that a box of 7mm Mauser had been inadvertently mixed in with it. When she did the .30-06 she even sorted out single cases that had a different headstamp. All in all I'd call it a win-win situation all the way around.

Once bagged I write what it is on an index card along with what steps are done so far, like decapped, PP cleaned, etc. No other brass can get accidentally tossed in (like the 7mm in the 6.5), nor can different brands get mixed in. Once fully prepped, the brass can be loaded at any time.

How do you guys deal with the oddball brass you end up with? I have a ton of PMC 6.5X55 along with some R-P and milsurp. There are enough of each kind to make up at least a box or two, but there are 4 Winchester brass in the mix. So what would you do with these oddballs? There are not enough of them to try load development. So do you just toss them into the "bad brass" recycle bin, have a "good brass that just isn't going to be used" bin, or something else?
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Old January 29, 2012, 10:24 PM   #2
Marco Califo
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Round File

I keep a round file just for that purpose. It has one main compartment, it is green and made of plastic. Capacity is 35 gallons.

So, if I find a .25 Auto or 380 in with 9mm and 40SW, as I sort them. The odd, wrong calibers that I can not use, get methodically placed in the round file, filed under the empty frozen pizza box.

I like to wear gloves when doing this sorting and clean the cases I am keeping as soon as possible. The residues are toxic.
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Old January 30, 2012, 08:49 PM   #3
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Thanks for the heads up on the gloves, I never thought about any contaminants on the cases, just the dirtyness of some of them. I have a few of the purple nitrile and laytex exam gloves but will get aonther box of them.

Any brass that is bad we throw in a bin for recycling, scrap brass is a couple bucks a pound. After a while it adds up....
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Old January 30, 2012, 09:13 PM   #4
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I would save stuff like the 7 mm Mauser I would put to the side for later on. You can use it for trade fodder, or just give it to someone you like.

As far as a couple of rounds with different headstamps I would still load them, and use them for fouling rounds. Then again if you find the right charge weight you should be able to load them the same with consitant results. (I followed Dan Newberry's method.)

For handgun the only way I sort .45 acp is into a small few groups.

1 steel cased. I use a magnet to weed them out. There always seems to be one or two that make their way into my brass bag.

2 AMERC it goes straight into the scrap for recycle. It is the worst brass known to me at this point in time.

3 aluminum cased it goes to the trash can I find one every once in a blue moon.

4 Small primer pocket .45 acp I save them in a coffee can. I have lots of small primers. When I have enough of them I load them up for those times when I know I am not going to be able to pick up my brass.

My loads for .223 Rem.

I sort them sometimes.

I sperate LC, and Hornady

The rest all get buched up together. I have not noticed a differance when shooting them.
No matter how many times you do it and nothing happens it only takes something going wrong one time to kill you.
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Old January 31, 2012, 08:03 PM   #5
Dr. Strangelove
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I keep a big Ziplockā„¢ freezer bag for those oddball calibers I pick up at the range but don't load for, or at least the ones I might conceivably load for in the future (.45, .380, .25, etc.).

The real oddballs I keep in a smaller bag for trade or scrap.
Just remember, when you pull the trigger, the bullets come out going very, very fast. So make sure to keep the weapon pointing away from you.
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Old February 1, 2012, 10:14 AM   #6
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I sort by manufacturer, then by weight. except for pistol which I load any servicable brass together since it is just practice ammo and precision accuracy is not a consideration. I no longer pick up rifle brass other than my own because I do not know it's history so I prefer to purchase new brass for my 243 and 270. For 223 I have lots of once fired LC 5.56 which I convert to 223 by trimming and removing the primer crimp. It has worked very well for me. Of course 223 seems to be pretty forgiving about brass.
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