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308 reloading

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by tlfreek, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    so I am in the process of reloading some 308 for the first time. I've reloaded many other calibers to include large magnum rifle, but I am having a problem with about 10% of these. It seems that some of the 308 will not re size at the base of the cartridge as I cannot compress the press so that the case completely enters the die. I am using a pile of case lube, but no dice. I suspect I could force it but not sure if that is the right thing to do here. I need some folks with experience to guide me further.

    Is there a way I can resize these - heat perhaps? I have no skills in anything - so this has to be simple or it wont work for me.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Greenbug

    Greenbug Bend Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like you got a batch of "once fired" 308 brass that was fired in a machine gun maybe. You might have to run them through a small base die to get them back down to a normal size that you can use in your rifle. Measure the case head with some calipers and compare it to the cartridge drawing dimensions in your reloading manual. Measure before and after running them through your FL sizing die to see if it is getting them back to specs. Don't use too much lube or you could get some hydraulic denting happening during your resizing.
     
    evltwn and (deleted member) like this.
  3. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    thanks - Greenbug
     
  4. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    wait......

    I just did some research on the small base die. If I cant stuff the cartridge in a regular die how can I compress it even further in a small base die?
     
  5. alphapygmy

    alphapygmy Yamhill County Active Member

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    What kind of brass is it? Mil surplus LC, Lapua, or plain Remington stuff or what? It would also be good to get a case head measurement as Greenbug suggests.
     
  6. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    WCC and TAA
     
  7. alphapygmy

    alphapygmy Yamhill County Active Member

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    WCC is Western Cartridge Company and TAA is mil stuff from Taiwan (had to look that one up!). Sounds like Greenbug was right, you've got surplus brass probably fired through a machine gun so it's stretched pretty good. Mil brass typically has thicker walls than commercial brass so it can be harder to resize too. If it was me I would just pitch the 10% that aren't sizing properly. I typically pitch 5% of the Lake City 5.56 I reload for my AR. My face is only inches away from 50,000 psi. Brass is cheap, face transplant and seeing eye dog not so cheap. Also, start a little under what ever load you are going to use. The thicker walls on mil brass slightly reduces volume in the case which can increase pressure some. Just out of curiosity what are you loading for?
     
    evltwn and (deleted member) like this.
  8. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    AR 308 35 grains of lt-32 with a 168 grn bthp. I've done about 15 just to see how those fire. if the load works, action cycles, bullets hit paper I'll stay with it.
     
  9. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    BTW I still want to salvage the TAA stuff if I can. I think it will be ok if I can resize. I looked at others i have loaded (of the 15) and some others TAA were just fine. it seems that just some have issues. If the end result is I rip the press of my bench - I'll chuck it, but someone mentioned using wax in another thread that could help.

    I'll work on this until I realize the time to make them useful is ridiculous or costs too much - buy special dies, lubes, wax whatever.

    Thanks.
     
  10. 308

    308 ΜOΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ ΜOΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ Platinum Supporter Silver Supporter

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    43.5gr varget with 168gr bthp sierras is same hole stuff for me
     
  11. 2ndtimer

    2ndtimer SE Washington state Active Member

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    What kind of press are you using? Dies? If you are using an RCBS Rockchucker, or better and quality dies and have the press firmly mounted, it seems like you should be able to resize the cases. If you do, be sure to measure them and trim to proper length, as they may stretch a bit once resized. You might also contact the press/die manufacturer and see what they suggest. It may be easier and less time consuming to just recycle the bad brass, but that is up to you.
     
  12. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    using rock chucker with rcbs dies. i can do all trimming and case prep one resized. resizing is the problem

     
  13. bmgm37

    bmgm37 Coos Bay Active Member

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    I have shot and reloaded hounds of rounds shot out of my MG's and have never had any problem resizing brass out of any of them. MG's have a slightly larger chamber, but not by that much. A Rockchucker should have no problem resizing the brass, hard to say for sure what the problem is.......
     
  14. ma96782

    ma96782 Vancouver, WA Well-Known Member

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    Are you aware of "over cam?" For me, I needed a bit, to get the brass re-szied correctly. It's NOT good enough to just leave a sliver of light between the die and the shell holder. BTW, I use regular F/L resizing dies from RCBS (for .223 Rem, .308W and .30-06). Additionally, I haven't had trouble with MG brass in .308Win.

    Also, are you using a headspace gauge to check your brass resizing efforts?

    STORY TIME:

    My son use to have a .30-06 commercial Rem 700 bolt action. My reloads that I used in my M1 Garand (in .30-06) wouldn't chamber in his rifle. Humm....my reloads gauged correctly and work well in my Garand. So, what was I doing wrong? Well, what I found was that the cases needed to be resized even further in order for the reloads to work in both rifles. I just screwed the resizing die a little further down and sized the cases. This caused a bit of "over cam" in the press. But, it worked. The cases use to gauge between the high and low cuts. Now they gauge on the very low side of the acceptable range.

    Aloha, Mark
     
  15. bmgm37

    bmgm37 Coos Bay Active Member

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    I also use and highly recommend the use of cartridge case gauges. I use the for EVERY caliber I reload.
     
  16. tlfreek

    tlfreek Vancouver WA Active Member

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    well I dont know if I have this sorted, but I found away around it. BRUTE FORCE. I put a cheater bar on the end of my rock chucker along with a fresh can of hornady case lube and went to town. i did 500 cases.

    no doubt about it - the cases are really deformed (were), I hope that after I get them out of my gun they're not this bad. I dont wanna go through this each time i reload.
     
  17. rick benjamin

    rick benjamin USA, Or, Damascus Secure the drama Silver Supporter 2016 Volunteer

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