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head space guage question

920 Views 9 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  hotbarrel
I did not want to post this in the group buy thread but I have a few questions. first off if they are around $25 each pluss shipping, that would mean it will be well over $50 for one set of GO NO/GO to my house rite??
I can understand, it could be bad if the head space is too much, but how bad can it be if the round chambers and the gun runs fine if the head space is too tight??
my thought is to just buy a no/go to be shure their is not too much space. this way all I have spent is thirty something.
I do understand what they check and how they work but to be honest I have never used head space guages. I made individual guage disks from feeler guages. start big and the bolt will not close then step down till it closes and that is my head space. RITE??
I have done this with a round that I carefully pulled the head and dumped the powder, I have guaged off of many differant brands including U.S. made rounds. I have found less that one thousandth ".001" differance in the differant brands.
I have done this many times it is slow but it works for me. cost 99 cent.
yes I am trying to get in on the group buy if I am not too late. please DO NOT TAKE ME AS PUTTING DOWN THE GUAGES. I am just wondering about a few things. anyone have oppinions?? or something to convince me that my H.S. disk method is not acceptable?? or is it just the guages will be faster??
I am poor and trying to justify the money to myself. AGAIN I AM NOT BASHING :boxing: ANYONE OR ANYTHING.

:) :thankyou: :) :thankyou:
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sks_hunter said:
The headspace guage is solid, and the dimensions never change, giving you consistant tolerances. I only know this from handloading, and my own experiences with that, because when I've tried to set OAL for a specific round, this has happened to me. Although the cartridge headspaces on the shoulder, if the lead is out far enough, you may never get there. Just my $.02.
This is true...You should never use a case to check headsapce, why? Beacuse you can make a case do what ever you want. Depending on how the manufacturer sizes the cases (or the individual) the shoulder can be moved up or down so with a case I can make it work or not work. The gauge is fixed you cannot change the dimensions. If using the actual case was good enough they wouldn't be making headspace gauges. Builders would just buy a box of what-ever ammo and use them. The only quality control on our builds is "US". It would be like using a ruler instead of a digital caliper to take a measurement. Close just isn't good enough! Just my .02
sks_hunter said:
The shoulder can easily be pushed back (especially true for brass cases), and between 2 manufacturers of ammo, the base to shoulder dimension can be off as much as .005", or more, I have seen this with my own eyes using a comparitor. So then we have to ask... which ammo do I use, and which one is closest to the designed tolerance?...The guages are made to exacting tolerances, and won't be distorted over use. They maintain thier accuracy.
Thank you, that's what I was trying to say. When I reload, I have a gauge that checks case dimensions. It's like a headspace gauge in reverse. It ensures that the case will fit the chamber correctly. I have one for every caliber I reload (rifle and pistol) for. Like the headspace gauge without it your only guessing.

Also the reason for the "Go" gauge is to check the chamber to make sure it's within specs. This is especially critical in a self-loading gun, where the bolt doesn't have a strong caming action to remove the case from the chamber. If your bolt doesn't close on the "Go" gauge you would need a chamber reamer to open it up a little so the bolt will close on the gauge. All these gauges are just a better means of "checks and balances" to ensure what your doing is correct. Home grown gauges are okay in some instances but not in others. The only thing I can say is for you to do what feels right. If you feel that your method works, use it.


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