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First reload after factory round

utbrowningmanutbrowningman Member Posts: 2,962 ✭✭
Still a novice reloader. Is it necessary to FLS my cases after firing the factory round?

Comments

  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,346 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Depends on the chamber in your rifle. Most autoloaders do better functioning wise if the ammo is full length resized. All my bolt actions have good chambers so I only neck size. After the first shooting I trim to uniform length, champher the case mouth inside and out and use the flash hole deburring tool.

    My test for a good chamber is take the spent round and drop it back into the chamber and see if it will spin easily.
  • Sky SoldierSky Soldier Member Posts: 460
    edited November -1
    If I only have one gun that takes that caliber I don't bother FLS. If I've got a few guns that round will fit into then I do.

    SS
  • MobuckMobuck Member Posts: 12,967 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I FLS everything since I load only couple of rounds for which I have a single rifle. I'd never recommend neck sizing for hunting ammo.
    IMHO You need to be several steps beyond the casual or beginning reloader with a common hunting rifle to gain any benefit from neck sizing.
    There are a few (very few) instances where cases are so fragile or hard to find or whatever that neck sizing is necessary to prolong case life as much as possible.
  • FrancFFrancF Member Posts: 35,278 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by charliemeyer007
    Depends on the chamber in your rifle. Most autoloaders do better functioning wise if the ammo is full length resized. All my bolt actions have good chambers so I only neck size. After the first shooting I trim to uniform length, champher the case mouth inside and out and use the flash hole deburring tool.

    My test for a good chamber is take the spent round and drop it back into the chamber and see if it will spin easily.


    ^^^^^ This is what I do. (only further step, keep that brass dedicated to that rifle) Sounds *, but all my bolt rifles have there own brass. My Semi's are loaded as universal/interchangeable SAMMI spec.
  • utbrowningmanutbrowningman Member Posts: 2,962 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Thanks for the info. I do keep brass specific to each firearm.
  • Hawk CarseHawk Carse Member Posts: 4,320 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:There are a few (very few) instances where cases are so fragile or hard to find or whatever that neck sizing is necessary to prolong case life as much as possible.


    But does it?
    Most cases wear out with neck splits anyhow.
    So unless you are using a bushing die to do the minimum of sizing without an expander plug, you are not really gaining much. Also periodic annealing.
  • nemesisenforcernemesisenforcer Member Posts: 10,513 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    what they said.

    My rule of thumb is: bolt guns=neck sizing, autoloaders=full length or I full length size my bolt brass if they're getting a little tight on chambering.
  • bpostbpost Member Posts: 32,225 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by utbrowningman
    Still a novice reloader. Is it necessary to FLS my cases after firing the factory round?


    That question is where the art of reloading comes into play. A factory round was manufactured to a spec meant to fit all SAMMI chambers. Your guns chamber is a world unto itself. Most cases will actually shrink in length as the brass flows to fill the chamber walls. The case may or may not need full length sizing to fit your chamber again.

    Dies, even F/L dies are adjustable for how much of the case is sized. I have a die set for a Springfield 1903-A3 that sizes 2/3rds of the neck, leaving the body alone. The chamber neck is large and having some unsized neck left helps align the case with the bore.

    If you are shooting a bolt gun you can experiment with the die to see what fits your gun. Again this is where the art of reloading comes into play. Back the die off and start lowering it 1/2 turn at a time so you can find the sweet spot for sizing to your guns chamber.

    A couple of issues will eventually pop up. the first is necks get work hardened after a few firings. An annealing program for your brass will eliminate that issue. It is EASY to do with a propane torch and a pan of water. Another is if you are shooting hot loads neck sizing only the case base will eventually expand to the point chambering becomes difficult. At that point a body die or F/L sizing is possibly needed. A note there; even then a F/L sizing may not be needed to the point where you cam over on the shell holder; you may just need to touch up the bases a bit and they will again chamber easily.

    The goal is to get the case back into the chamber with the least amount of sizing needed. a bit of neck sizing and bump the shoulder back about .002 is all it take for most guns.

    Auto loaders are another matter only experimentation can help you there. Most folks F/L size for auto loaders.
  • TriumphGuyTriumphGuy Member Posts: 37 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Every situation is different. You didn't specify handgun (generally straight wall) or rifle (generally bottle-necked). You can't go wrong by full length sizing everything except in rare instances. You'll always suffer a little more brass cold working, shortening case life a bit, but you always size the neck. Brass isn't that expensive unless you're loading something old and near obsolete. I have one of those and I "custom" resize to both prolong brass life and accommodate a chamber with excessive headspace. I have a few old Enfield rifles with oversize oval chambers that will swallow nothing that has not been viscously full length resized. I have a single shot .30-06 for which I delight in barely neck sizing with a collet die. All fun for the hobbyist reloader.
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