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A Question About Steel Case Ammo

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I have a question for the community. What is it about steel case ammo that is so bad for your weapons? I'm fairly new to reloading and when I look at the components, it seems to me that if you compare say Wolf .223 Gold (brass casing) to Wolf .223 steel case the only notable difference is the casings.
Now I don't know about the type of propellant used in each, but it looks like the same primers (braden) and pretty much the same bullet (depending on what you choose as far as weight) in each.
So can someone explain to me why folks are so opposed to steel case ammo other than the fact it can't be reloaded.
Thanks in advance o_O
 

Reno

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Nothing wrong with it if your gun runs it.

It can have some issues here and there, but I’m thinking most of that is armchair commandos doing there thing.

Back when, I bought and shot Cabelas Herters 223 in the tens of thousands.
 

Mikej

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All I know is it seems like it makes my AK pretty dirty? But then, I've never ran anything else through it. :s0092:
 

MechaNik

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I shoot steel whenever I can find it. It's much cheaper and I'm not going to be worried about picking up every last one. Haven't experienced but one cartridge failure and ask it took was a re strike to solve. No corrosion problems, no wear problems... No problems.
 
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The cases have a lacquer that gums up your chamber. The worry is a bit overblown though IMO. I just dont like it because it stinks like cat piss and like you said, it's not reloadable.
Steel case ammo is dirty as it doesn't expand like brass, so more gunk builds up in the chamber. If lacqeuer truly did melt the Russians would have stopped using it for their military a long time ago. IICR the Germans also used lacquered steel case ammo in their machine guns, the issue with their ammo being the steel itself.
 
OP
rwadeg311
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So basically , and I have noticed this, is it runs dirtier .But if you clean your weapon after every use (as I usually do) it shouldn't be a problem?
I've read and heard from others that it will corrode your barrel. Any truth to that?
 
OP
rwadeg311
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Steel case ammo is dirty as it doesn't expand like brass, so more gunk builds up in the chamber. If lacqeuer truly did melt the Russians would have stopped using it for their military a long time ago. IICR the Germans also used lacquered steel case ammo in their machine guns, the issue with their ammo being the steel itself.
If the case doesn't expand like brass as you've said, how does that lead to more build up?
Please explain .....
 

papersoldier

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If the case doesn't expand like brass as you've said, how does that lead to more build up?
Please explain .....
When the brass case expands in the chamber it creates a "seal" which forces all the gasses and particulate down the barrel. Since steel cases dont expand and form that "seal" there are some gasses and particulate that blow back along the case, fouling the chamber.
 

slimmer13

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Steel case ammo is dirty as it doesn't expand like brass, so more gunk builds up in the chamber. If lacqeuer truly did melt the Russians would have stopped using it for their military a long time ago. IICR the Germans also used lacquered steel case ammo in their machine guns, the issue with their ammo being the steel itself.

Thas right. I remember that LG torture test. Either way, gunk in your chamber is the result.

Steel can have a place depending on what kind of shooting you do. I haven't shot the stuff in a decade though in anything but a commie gun.
 
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A steel case cartridge can be tougher on a firearm's components.

Often, steel cased ammo also utilizes a bi-metal jacketed bullet, which may shorten the overall lifespan of a barrel.

The math however seems to favor that the savings from using steel case ammo (vs. brass), is that the cost to replace a barrel, or say a worn-out extractor, is far less than the difference in the cost of ammo when one is shooting enough of it to make a difference.
 
OP
rwadeg311
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When the brass case expands in the chamber it creates a "seal" which forces all the gasses and particulate down the barrel. Since steel cases dont expand and form that "seal" there are some gasses and particulate that blow back along the case, fouling the chamber.
Ok..makes sence. Thanks.
 
My AK chews it up and spits it out. We'll, it would do the same thing if it was made out of concrete.
Some guns love it, some are more finicky. Try it. If you can go through a box with no problem I'd keep shooting it as long as it's cheap.
Best thing about steel cased ammo is that you can pick it up really quickly with a big Harbor Freight magnetic pick up tool (also cheap).
 
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The biggest thing isn’t the casing, it’s the bullet as it’s bi-metal as someone pointed out. Instead of being all copper FMJ the bullet has some steel in it which makes it cheaper to make, but it can wear your barrel down faster depending on how fast you shoot the ammo and for how long. i.e. lots of ammo real fast=hot barrel=more wear. A little ammo not very fast= cooler barrel=less wear
 
OP
rwadeg311
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A steel case cartridge can be tougher on a firearm's components.

Often, steel cased ammo also utilizes a bi-metal jacketed bullet, which may shorten the overall lifespan of a barrel.

The math however seems to favor that the savings from using steel case ammo (vs. brass), is that the cost to replace a barrel, or say a worn-out extractor, is far less than the difference in the cost of ammo when one is shooting enough of it to make a difference.
This is something I've also heard.
When my son and I go shoot (every weekend weather permitting) we burn through a lot of ammo.
And up till now I've only shot steel case through certain guns. I think as we get more into reloading, we will eliminate steel all together. (Cost)
 
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This is something I've also heard.
When my son and I go shoot (every weekend weather permitting) we burn through a lot of ammo.
And up till now I've only shot steel case through certain guns. I think as we get more into reloading, we will eliminate steel all together. (Cost)
Lucky gunner did a great review on steel case, it’s a great read and you should look up “lucky gunner steel case review” they shoot 10k rounds of 3 different steel case and 1 brass case over the course of a couple days and show what it does to the barrel and how many failures it has. For me, I won’t shoot it unless I’m shooting it through a gun specifically for 200 yards and in. I won’t shoot it through my gun that I try to get as much accuracy as possible.
 
OP
rwadeg311
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Nothing wrong with it if your gun runs it.

It can have some issues here and there, but I’m thinking most of that is armchair commandos doing there thing.

Back when, I bought and shot Cabelas Herters 223 in the tens of thousands.
Lucky gunner did a great review on steel case, it’s a great read and you should look up “lucky gunner steel case review” they shoot 10k rounds of 3 different steel case and 1 brass case over the course of a couple days and show what it does to the barrel and how many failures it has. For me, I won’t shoot it unless I’m shooting it through a gun specifically for 200 yards and in. I won’t shoot it through my gun that I try to get as much accuracy as possible.
Thanks. I will do that...pretty much the kinda info I was looking for :).
Although I do appreciate everyones input.
Thanks again .
 
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I have a CZ 527 that specifically says use steel, as it was more reliable . Just keep it clean is all I do.
Of Course the SKS's and AK all run steel here accept for the SHTF stash.
Not a failure once, ...............wait I had some crappy Wolf twice not fire. But was only two in like thousands.
I just keep my guns clean never had issues.
 
If you’re shooting an AR with DI, you’re going to get some residue in the action from the gas operation anyway, despite whether or not steel casings “seal” as well as brass.

If your gun runs reliably with steel cased ammo and isn’t an “über accurate tack-driver” that you’re worried about wearing down and affecting “über accuracy” then shoot that sheite... It ain’t made of sugar, it won’t melt... I promise! ;)
 

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