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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I reload my own ammo and someone suggested that I use new military brass for 223.Is there someone out there that can answer that question.I was told that military brass is stronger,so it will stand up to the use in the XCR.Thank's Mike
 

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This is a debate you will hear that goes either way. Some guys will say they would never use any military brass, some say only new military, some say no machine gun brass. Me, I haven't ever had any problems using once fired military brass. A proper inspection and resizing will ensure that the brass is up to the task at hand. I have heard somewhere that military brass is a little thicker (so it is stronger) but thicker means less powder capacity. Me, I will take it whenever I find it. Make sure you get the Dillon Super Swage 600 if you use once fired, it speeds up the primer pocket swaging (unless you have a Dillon 1050, then you don't need it).

Bottom line, these days i would say use whatever you can reliably get the cheapest. I have military brass that i have reloaded more than 7 times with no issues. Case prep is a big part of that.
 

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In my limited reloading experience I have found that the military brass is stronger. But like AZ, I'll pretty much take it where I can get it. But, I do think the military stuff will stand up to being loaded more times.

Swaging the crimped primer pockets is a little time consuming, but you only have to do it once.

I have bought some of mine from gibrass.com. Last time I paid $60 per thousand, but for an extra $15 he will process the pockets and polish. And any minor dents from the occasional machine gun brass will smooth right out when you shoot it. ;D
 

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Buy processed military brass, it won't put you in tears price wise. :2cents: There are several adds in Shotgun News for PROCESSED brass. Make sure it is resized AND that the military crimp is removed. After that you are in business. Some folks will even prime the brass a PLUS!!! Happy reloading. PS If you want to pack it away for long term storage the wife/girlfriends nail polish is the answer...... case neck AND primer.
 

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I am also a somewhat inexperienced reloader, but have not had any serious problems with military brass. As others have said, got to make sure you get that primer crimp out. I cut it out with a Hornady hand tool, and it is a time consuming PITA. Glad it only has to be done once per case. I would like to get the Dillon tool one day. I've seen videos of it operating, and, I can't imagine an easier solution.

I do have my doubts about the consistency of military brass, but haven't done any serious analysis of that so far.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank's to Badman,Aziator,Gunner 69,and ny 32182.Thank you all for taking the time to give me advice on this matter.I am going to try military brass,and compare it to winchester brass.I have a chance to buy New lake city Mil Spec brass,uncrimped and unprimed.I will avoid having to deal with the primer pocket.By the way I have seen Dillon's way of dealing with military brass,it is awesome.Thank's to all Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I would like to ask one more question.Buy new or once shot military brass for the XCR ?Again I thank you in advance for your time and knowledge.Mike
 

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Once Fired will be fine. save you some money.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
aziator,Thank you for your advice,I will order some once-fired brass before the end of the day.I really appreciate you taking the time to answer me.I see that you are in Iraq, what a place to be. I hope you are keeping your head down.And for what ever reason a young man goes to war,I hope you will be safe.And tonight this old man will say a prayer for your safe return to your loved one's.Mike
 

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Lake City is good brass. I bought 2,000 once fired that was resized, primer pocket deburred, and reprimed. I have 500 rds I shoot and reload (about 10 times now - brass still good), the other is in reserve. Great brass just don't load max loads calling for commercial cases as you may have pressure problems. My 5.56 XCR barrel loves the 62gr Nosler bullet. I also have a 6mm/.223 (6x54) barrel on my Robinson M96 and an AR that I resize 5.56 brass for. Works great too. If you are using your 5.56/.223 primarily for plinking I suggest you buy "blemmish" bullets to shoot. Cheap and out of 5,000 bullets I have only had to discard 3 bullets. Midway sometimes has the blemish bullets. www.midwayusa.com Good luck and happy blasting....... save up for a Dillon or use their "PAYMENT PLAN." ;D :duh: :2cents:
 

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Military Brass is good stuff as long as it was not shot from a machine gun with very loose head space. It is possible machine guns such as the M249 (5.56mm) and M240 (7.62) can seriously malform the brass making it very difficult to size.

Machine gun brass also has the issue with case splitting, where there is a chance your loads will totally split the case in half. But the warning signs of case splitting is easy to spot, you just have to inspect the inside of every case with a flash light. If you see a ring develep on the walls of the inside, throw the case away.

Lucky for us, most of the NATO 5.56 we have access to is not from an MG but but from a M16 or M4.

7.62/.308 is another story though, as most of this stuff is from machine guns. If you are lucky, you got some 308 MG brass that came from a MG with tight headspace, therefore resizing will be easy. I myself got a bad batch as I had a bitch of a time resizing the 308 PMJ and LC brass that I recently picked up.

The primer of 308 military brass is also crimped on super tight. My Hornady and Lee dies could not handle crimp+size in one step, even with excess lube, so I had to buy the Lee decapping die ($10) to decapp first then size. Then I would proceed with just sizing, and even with excess lube for each case, it still took a lot of force to resize.

Lastly there is swaging, I have an RCBS swager and it takes forever! I always tell myself I need a Dillon Swager but as soon as I am done I forget that I need it. :)

Eventually I was able to clean and size everything, and so far so good as everything reliably went bang.
 

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Yeah Eric, Thats why I ALWAYS buy mt military brass (9mm, 45ACP, 5.56, and .308) already processed (Crimp removed/polished & resized) the processor always throws in extra brass in case of a few "problem" brass. :duh:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I am going to take the advice all of you have given me.I ordered 1000 rounds of 223 processed once fired,reamed and crimp removed,cleaned sized and trimmed to 1.75" from Top Brass.I will keep you informed,as to how things are progressing.I will make it my business to check for the ring inside the brass before reloading.Thank's Mike
 

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I've bought 10,000 rounds of procesed brass from TOP BRASS. It's the best that I've found in 20+ years of reloading. Just reloaded my last 500 last weekend. They now offer it primed with cci 400 primers---save some more steps. I will start buying it- set up DILLION to drop powder, seat bullet, finished round in two steps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Texas Softail, That makes me feel so much better that someone has used Top Brass and had good result's.My order is two day's out,but I will keep everyone informed on how the reloading go's . Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
eric cartman,I received my first shipment of military brass from Top Brass today.You said I should look for a black ring inside the brass with a flash light.Should I look first before I load them or shoot them first.Also where would I see the black rings,in the neck area or at the very bottom around the primer area.Mike
 

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Michael, I don't think you have to worry about the brass from Top Brass. I am sure they have a quality control program to insure that doesn't happen. It is the "mystery" brass you get from the gunshow or whatever. :2cents:
 

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top brass has some excellent pricing.

for 223 i don't think you have to worry about "the ring" since just about all 223 came from M4's or M16's. It is the the brass that came from Machine guns that you have to worry, and most of the time that is 308 brass.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Gunner 69,Eric Cartmann thank's for that assuring advice.I am leaving for the range in a few minutes,but when I get home I will try out a few new load's with this brass. I will also stick with Top Brass.Thank's to the two of you for your advice. Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
This is for gunner and Eric and all the other kind people who helped me. I had a very good day at the range,the military brass worked fine,even thought all my rounds were all light loads.I am sold on military brass,I will mix it in with my winchester brass. I had two things go wrong,my primers had a puncher in them and I had multiple firing's with only one trigger pull.The first was 2 , and the second was 3, after that I packed up and came home.I plan on giving Terra a call this morning and see what she can tell me.Well thank's again Mike
 
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