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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
first off I am new to reloading, :scared: I bought a bunch of lake city brass that is all ready to reload. however the place that sold the brass did not sell primers. I need to know about primers and how to choise them. are the all the same or are they differant sizes and typs? I want to get the proper ones for the brass I bought. also how about "sealer" for the primers. is their such a thing?? if yes do I need it ?
pretty soon I will be asking about powder LOL
 

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hotbarrel said:
first off I am new to reloading, :scared: I bought a bunch of lake city brass that is all ready to reload. however the place that sold the brass did not sell primers. I need to know about primers and how to choise them. are the all the same or are they differant sizes and typs? I want to get the proper ones for the brass I bought. also how about "sealer" for the primers. is their such a thing?? if yes do I need it ?
pretty soon I will be asking about powder LOL
Are you loading 308, 3006 or 223?
There is generally two sizes in the US, large and small rifle, both sizes come in standard and magnum. The magnum can burn a little hotter and can increase pressures a little so don't use for loads that are hot or in the upper limits. Most 30 calibre ammo is large rifle. I belive only military and military spec ammo is laquered at the primer and the bullet to discourage intrusion of water.

Generally, the larger the capacity of the brass, the slower the burning time of the powder. Most of the military ammo does will with the "IMR" ( improved military rifle) powders.

BTW This is critical, make sure you never use fast burning pistol powder in large calibre rifle brass, disaster will result.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
thies are 145 gr heads, and the cases are 308. clearly their is a lot more to this. I do not know if they will come with the large or small hole, maby I should delay till I get them.? should I ask for "IMR" powder or dose it come in differant rateings. like black powder? if I use the less powerfull primer how much powder do you recomend I use?

any suggestions ware to buy and what to buy cheap for powder and primers. how about the unloaded military powder I saw once for sale.
My priority is to keep safe so I do not think I will be useing any "extream high pressure" loads.
realy any advise will be appreciated

also any help if I decide to load a few up in 3006. A friend is willing to give me some. same primer?? same amount of powder??
 

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hotbarrel said:
first off I am new to reloading, :scared: I bought a bunch of lake city brass that is all ready to reload. however the place that sold the brass did not sell primers. I need to know about primers and how to choise them. are the all the same or are they differant sizes and typs? I want to get the proper ones for the brass I bought. also how about "sealer" for the primers. is their such a thing?? if yes do I need it ?
pretty soon I will be asking about powder LOL
I like to use Winchester primers myself, but that is only a matter of personal preference. There are four primer types/sizes, large and small rifle and large and small pistol. Like Chiroone said if you are shooting .30 cal military rifle brass you will want large rifle and if it is .223 then you will want small rifle. Not all manufacturers make magnum type primers. I know that Winchester does not make a small rifle magnum prime and their take on it was that there regular primer was good enough across the board for both magnum and non magnum cases. I say there are four sizes but if you look you can typically find each size in a standard and a magnum classification as well. On the subject of primer sealant, I have never messed with it and have never felt it was necessary. I have not really looked but I have never seen it offered and the only thing I have seen it used on has been military stuff. Being as it is military brass you will probably find it necessary to trim or swage the crip out of the primer pockets before you prime your cases. The military typically crimps there primers in place and when you try to stuff a new one in it will either not go in at all or you will destroy it trying. I prefer to remove the crimp rather than to swage it. RCBS makes a primer pocket swagging tool that works great but to the eye you can not tell if the pocket has been swagged or not. So when you go to reload those cases again you can't tell if it's been done or not and believe me the brass gets mixed up fast. I find that if you buy a chamfer tool and simply chamfer the mouth of the primer pocket just enough to remove the crimp you will be able to seat your new primers, you will be able to identify a chamfered pocket at a glance, and so long as you do not over do your chamfer the primers will both seat fine and will feed into the pockets during the reloading process much better. Think about it, it makes a little bit of a funnel right where the primer feeds in. I have been doing it like this for years with no ill effect. I can't over emphasize what Chiroones says about the correct powder, a rifle case full of fast burning pistol powder is nothing more than a grenade in your chamber and will go off as one. IMR powders work great in the .30 cal service rifles but I do not prefer them because they tend to got through my powder throwers poorly. I like ball or spherical powders because they give a very consistent "throw" every time and I do not have to trickle them in.
 

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I did forget to mention that there is both large and small pistol primers and two sizes of shotgun primers also.

To make things a little more interesting, almost ALL European ammo has Berdan primers. That means that there are two mall holes in the primer area instead of one large hole as in USA Boxer primed brass. It is not possible to use conventional primers in this brass . BTW you will break your depriming pin if you try to punch out the primer in this type of brass. However, if you are using USA brass you won't have this problem.

On the subject of the brass. It is true, almost all military primers are crimped in. This prevents them from being dislodged during rough handling. The bullets are typically crimped in as well.

Rule 308 is right, you have to remove the primer crimp before putting in new primers. Of course, if these brass were already prepared, you may not have to do this.

Remember, you will need to resize case and check its OAL to make sure it is not too long. Brass tends to strech when fired, especially from SA or FA weapons. You can check most loading books for nominal ranges of brass length. There are also guages that make this very easy. If it is too long, it will need to be trimmed. I like the RCBS tool, but there are others out there as well.

I personally like IMR powders, as they are cheap and plentiful, but it is clearly a matter of preferance as ball powder works quite well. I use IMR because I think it is a little cleaner burning than ball IMHO.

Make sure you get yourself a very good set of loading data books. I have the Speer book which is quite good, but there are others that are just as good.

You will need a good powder measure and a scale. Never realy on the measuring scale on the powder measure alone. Also check it against the scale several times during the loading sequence to make sue it is consistant.

Also remember don't deviate to much from acceptable loading data. There is a wide disparity in the burning times of the powders and this can alter acceptable breech pressure considerably. However, most IMR powders are quite slow in their buring times so as long as you are prudent with your technique, you should be ok.

Reloading has a small, but measurable risk associated with it. I personally destroyed a Mini 14(stainless) because I pushed the limits, and did not recheck my powder measure. Other then eating a little walnut, no one was seriously hury. But it was a lesson learned.
 

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Hotbarrel, there are volumes and volumes of information on this so bare with us. The first thing you should do if you have not already is to buy a couple of current reloading manuals and read them from one end to the other.

If you are getting Lake City brass it will be U.S. military and if it is .30 cal, for the sake of this discussion it will mean 30/06 OR .308, it will have LARGE primer pockets. Now you will need to find out to what degree this brass has been processed. Is it simply once fired brass, or has it been decapped (deprimed) and resized, has it been trimmed for OAL (over all length) and have the primer pockets been swagged out to take a new primer? These are all things that you will need to ascertain.

On the subject of trimming and OAL; when you fire a cartridge it expands to fit the chamber and when you resize it you squeeze it back down. During this resizing you will cause the brass to literally "flow" and make the case longer. If this goes on unchecked then at a point the case will be so long that you will not be able to chamber a loaded round or the case may just stick in your die during the reloading process. This is why you must check and trim your cases for O.A.L. Most manuals will give you a .010 tolerance so I usually trim them back to the minimum and when I check them after they've been shot I usually find that I can skip a trimming. So I only trim them every other time, but make sure you check them EVERYTIME!

As far as cheap powder goes you can buy it in bulk from a few places online and places like Midway, Midsouth Shooters supply, Widener's etc. HOWEVER at your point in the reloading game I strongly suggest that you do not use them. I recommend that you get the above mentioned manuals and a couple of different cans of the powder listed in the reloading information for the particular caliber you are loading and get your feet wet first. When commercial powder is made for the civilian market it is "canistered". This means that they make up a batch of powder that is as close to the last powder as possible and then they test the stuff. It will have it's own burn rate, a tad faster or a tad slower than the last batch. Now they actually will blend in powder (probably from the last batch) that is faster or slower so as to make the current batch just like the last batch so there are no suprises for the consumer. Now the military does not play this game, they buy up millions of pounds of powder, then they test the stuff and see where it is at and then they come up with reloading specs that match THAT batch of powder. What this means to you is that while you will have specs that will get you into the ball park when using this surplus powder you will also need to have the experience necessary to read your brass and check for signs of overpressure as well as shooting it through a chronograph to back it all up. Once you have done your own load developement you write it all down in your note book on load developement and use this information to burn up the 8-32 pounds of powder that you bought for a deal. This may sound like a bunch of bullshit but the difference between minimum and maximum loads can be just a few grains, like 45.2-48.5 and lets say you start out at 50.0 and go to 55.0. It will all fit in that .30 cal case but if that powder is too fast it could blow up you or your gun. At any rate doing some load developement on your own with a known powder with a current manual will give you the experience you need. I usually consult several manuals for the same caliber/bullet/powder/primer combo and then I will assemble 10 rounds each that are .5 grains apart from the lightest to the heaviest charge and then go to the range and test them out for velocity and group size. I will usually shoot five of each powder charge, evaluate group size and velocity and then take the second group of five that showed me the most promise and shoot them again and see what my results are.

As far as loading up a few in 30/06. Sure the steps are all the same and for the most part yes you can use the same powder, primer, and bullets. Just make sure that you are following a current manual and it should be no problem.

Read this a couple of times and let it sink in and I know there are a couple of real good forums for this where you can get all kinds of insight too. Try accuratereloading.com
 

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a note on the importance of trimming...
a case which is too long could also actually "pinch" between the bullet and the edge of the lands within the rifle's chamber, creating more bullet drag against the case mouth. This added drag could actually send a safe loading to well beyond it's recommended pressure, and sometimes causing serious failures.

magnum or large primers will fit into the primer pocket, and would actually be a matter of preference... (I like the magnum primers, I guess it makes me think that detonation of the powder is more guaranteed with the hotter primer, and I favor CCI brand, due to the fact that they are a little harder) but be sure to follow directions to the letter. The Speer manual is great, and all manufacturers of powder will have some loads in some sort of manual available.

BE CAREFUL with recipes you might see posted on internet sites, as some of these are on the hairy edge of disaster. I have a browning 300MAG that I reload for, and loaded up to see where I could start to witness signs of overpressure. In this particular gun, 82.2gr of H4831SC with a 150gr. Hornady SST (compressed load) would start to flatten primers to the point that would start to send primer metal back into the firing pin hole (very slight dimple). This dude was posting that 84 gr. was the best he'd ever shot... would have potentially been disastrous in my gun. Good rule of thumb is going from a reputable manual, reduce the listed load by 10%, and work it up gradually from there.

Make sure you pay attention to what your spent round is telling you... when working up a load, look fist at the primer. Look for the edges starting to loose their radius, look for imprints of the bolt face in the primer (machine tool marks, or metal forming back into the firing pin hole) and ALWAYS fully inspect your brass.

Above all... have fun with it... you will definitely, without any shadow of doubt, have something of superior quality to that of ANY factory store-bought stuff!!!:rockin:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hay guys I got back from my semi local sporting supply store. here is what I got. firts I went with what Chiroone suggested and bought IMR powder. the manin the store looked in a book and found that IMR 4895 has acceptable ranges for 308 and 3006 so that is what I bought. I have what I am told is 142 grain bullets and he suggested 43 gr of powder.
the next thing I got is federal #210 large rifle primers. So now all I need is the brass to arive in the mail.
I did find out one bit of bad news. the guy in the store told me I would only get about 180 rounds per pound of powder. At allmost 20 bucks a pound I am going to go broke buying powder. I think I should have just bought more surpluss after all I am only blasting for fun.
I will keep in touch how they come out
 

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When using military brass be sure to 'REDUCE' the loads by at least 5%. The reason is that military cases are thicker and won't hold as much powder as commercial brass. This means that a load that's okay for commercial brass will be to 'HOT' for military brass. In another words the space between the powder and the bullet will be smaller with the possibilities of causing excessive pressures. A good loading manual will tell you about the difference in using military and commercial brass. A very accurate load that works well in my rifle using military cases is:

Brass - LC Match (.308)
Primers - Winchester LR
Powder - IMR 4895, 41.5 grains
Bullet - Sierra 168 grain Hollw Point Boat Tail Match (.308)

Other Loads -

Brass - LC Match (.308)
Primers - Winchester LR
Powder - IMR 4895, 47 grains
Bullet - Hornady 110 grain V-Max (.308)

Brass - LC Match (.308)
Primers - Winchester LR
Powder - IMR 4895, 41.5 grains
Bullet - Sierra 155 grain Palma Match (.308)

The above listed loads are 'VERY' acurate in my bolt action rifle. Always refer to commercial loading manual for your loads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
lake city brass came today. I bought 1000 cases of %100 referbished brass. it is super nice looking and only cost $66 delivered. thank you TOP BRASS
 
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