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Best 9mm brass for reloading?

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by 9mm guy, Nov 26, 2015.

  1. 9mm guy

    9mm guy Tualatin Active Member

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    As a newcomer to reloading, I am starting the very basic step of collecting my brass after shooting it at the range. I primarily shoot and plan to only reload 9mm. Is there such a thing as the "best" brass for reloading? Or are they pretty much all the same?

    I know that American made ammo is generally better than the Russian, Mexican, or other foreign made ones. And so are the brass from the fired cheaper foreign 9mm rounds (such as PPU, Sellier & Bellot, and Tulammo Brass Maxx) still recommended for reloading?

    One other very basic question: do you use the same brass for the different grain bullets? Or are there different brass recommended for 115, 124, and 147 grain bullets? Thanks in advance for all your answers.
     
  2. Twodogs

    Twodogs portland Or Active Member

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    Free is best.
     
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  3. PiratePast40

    PiratePast40 Willamette Valley Well-Known Member

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    There are lists out there of what some people think is the best brass. But I've loaded all that I can pick up at the range or from sellers on line. There are some brands with different case thicknesses and some have a stepped casing. My only advice would be to load all the same head stamp when you're working up loads. That way, you're taking out one of the variables.
     
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  4. Benchrest

    Benchrest The Desert Planet Well-Known Member

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    To be honest, I just load em', shoot em, and repeat until they're split (3 in about 15k) or lost.

    Couldn't tell you what headstamps I have (S&B has a tighter pocket).

    My 'fun' ammo is 115gr at about 1,090fps, nothing terribly exciting.

    If I were trying to workup major then it'd be a different story :D
     
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  5. Steve M

    Steve M Beaverton, OR Well-Known Member

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    9mm fired brass is so common and affordable you can chose to keep it all or toss certain brands, but I don't think you'll find much differences in the brands unless you compete. I don't care for Perfecta as their flash holes are often badly off-center. I just sort by headstamp and reload and shoot them together.

    I recently watched a video where a guy made loads from mixed range brass, Lapua, and Starline then shot 5 each from his revolver for accuracy. He wasn't using a rest so the results aren't conclusive, but the best group he got was from the mixed headstamp range brass.
     
  6. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    I used to be super anal with my lots of 9mm brass, like when I was a kid.. making sure it was all the same in every regard and for my "high performance" stuff, it'd be like once or twice fired.
    Pretty much all common brass is good and most people do as most have indicated here, especially for the range/practice. It's all good until it's not.. just inspect them carefully throughout your loading processes and cull the bad ones as they arise.
    Every "stage" of reloading can and will show if the brass should be rejected.. primer goes in too easy, falls out, case cracks, insufficient neck tension yada yada.
    With a full progressive, good luck "feeling" anything though. You'll have to rely on visual tells and trying to push the bullets into the case with your thumb etc.
     
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  7. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    Blazer and PMC (maybe others too) are soft, easy stroke on the sizer/decapper, and primers go in easy. Soft brass might last longer? Maybe, maybe not. As mentioned above Selleir & Bellott have tight primer pockets, AND the brass is very stiff/brittle compared to all other common makers, so much so I separate it out. The re-sizing stroke on 9mm brass is stiffer in general, I believe, because it is a tapered cartridge.

    I load single stage, call me crazy but it's a "Zen" kinda thing for me, and I figure I handle each piece of brass five times starting at just fired to putting the bullet atop the brass before seating. Just inspect the brass as you go.
     
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  8. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    I think we're failing this fellow with his particular question.. but kinda telling how things are. It's been so long ago when I segregated 9 brass to ruination that I forget.
    However, if I load proof load defensive stuff, it's always once fired (by me) big name stuff.
     
  9. BillM

    BillM Amity OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    If you want to buy some brass, save it and reload it, then you can't go wrong
    with Starline.

    That said--I buy range pick-up brass from the brass scroungers. If I'm practicing I'll
    pick it up. Shooting a match? Nope--leave it lay. If your extractor and ejector are
    doing their job, your gun will run 100% with mixed brass.

    I'll buy around 4,000 "once fired" 9mm nickel cases around the first of the year. Load
    it up into major match ammo for the year. Nickel is just a touch slicker and much prettier
    than brass--
     
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  10. 9mm guy

    9mm guy Tualatin Active Member

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    Thanks everyone. It sounds like 9mm brass is pretty similar, except for perhaps the Sellier & Bellot. I only have two boxes of those and so once I shoot them, I won't save them. But I'll save everything else.
     
  11. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    You may as well try the S&B before you toss it. I've wondered if it may be the , cheaper, Lee dies I use that make the S&B tougher to size?

    I find it hard to pass up ANY re-loadable brass. I've picked up brass from the range, and the forest floor, that I don't load for just so it doesn't go to waste. I'v got something like 5000 9mm just because I can't pass it up if someone at the club asks if I want it.
     
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  12. noylj

    noylj high desert Active Member

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    For accuracy, those that are closest to max length.
    For economy, those that are free.
    This isn't bench-rest. This is >12MOA shooting and accuracy is not a function of match cases.
     
  13. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    Whatever is free.

    Serious. Check for loose pockets and cracks on that stuff. Otherwise... Happy shooting
     
  14. FA9

    FA9 Hillsburrito, ORgun Well-Known Member

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    Took the words out of my mouth lol.