Noob questions

  • I have two boxes and half of factory ammunition with a very high velocity ES, I have weighed the cartridges and there is some variation between them. Question is if I could improve this ammunition pulling the bullets, match the weight of the powder and reseat them?

  • For all the effort, it would be better to simply shoot them, and then reload them properly.

  • Would it improve the ammunition or simply waste my time? I do not care about the effort. since I have several months ahead until I can acquire the powder and primers.

  • The only way it would improve the performance would be if you broke it down, knocked the live primer out, sized the brass, treated the neck with something (as it will be very dry and scarred), and then re-loaded it with components for a load that was worked with that same brass.

    For me, it would absolutely be a waste of time. For you, maybe it isn't. You'll have to decide.

  • Pulled bullets also may not shoot as well as new ones.

  • I quit using "pulled" bullets for anything. Even in handgun rounds I was running into trouble and it just wasn't worth it.

    Now if that is all you have or can get it might be worth playing with.

  • x2 n shooting. I wouldn't go through the load development process to figure out what load combination your rifle likes with 50 cases. IMO 50 rounds is a small number of cases to work with afterwards.

    Some folks I consider wise have advised me to buy enough brass to wear out a barrel. 50 doesn't even come close.

  • If you can get 40 firings on brass, 50 might be enough to wear out a barrel. ;) hehe.

  • In that case I now have 50 more fouling rounds! Thanks that will save me time figuring it out by trial and error. I am still waiting for the reloading goods to arrive, but until I have the authorization to buy powder and primers it is still about 3 or 4 months away.

    I have read orkan's load development article several times but can not find bullet seating depth for the initial pressure ladder, is .010" off the lands ok?

    Also I plan to load 168gr berger hunting vld bullets, in my 9.5 twist rate (24 inch barrel) they need a velocity at least 2950fps to fully stabilize them at sea level. I can only buy Vihtavouri powder, I am looking to buy N560 is it the right choice?

    vihtavouri powders

  • Starting .010 off is just fine. That's what I usually do.

    N560 is good to go. N570 is newer and probably more suitable for heavy bullets. So really you can test either and stick with the one that shoots best. If you were loading 180's or 195's or something in that weight class, I'd definitely try the 570.

  • Thanks then I'll start the pressure ladder at .010 off the lands.

    Do you know with which of those powders will I get more speed, so what will be the most temp stable powder? I'll need to run the 168 vld fast, I'd prefer to load 180's and 195's but I'm afraid my rifle will not stabilize them with a 9.5 twist rate.

  • Viht powders tend to be fairly temp stable. I've not worked with them a ton however. I have no idea which you'll get the most speed out of. Really depends on all the other variables. 9.5 is borderline for 180's. Might work. Definitely not 195's.

  • Thanks orkan and others, I'll ask vhit about it.

  • Is it possible to bump the shoulder with forster full lenght sizing die ? depends it on how close the base of the die is from the shell holder or jaws in the case of the coax press?

  • @toni
    You should be able to bumb the shoulder back with any FL sizing die. I've had a few over the years that wouldn't but that's a not the norm. Most recently I had this problem with a forester die for my 6.5x47, the brass fired is 1.850 I bump it back .002 but the forester die bottoms out on the jaws before bumping the shoulder. I contacted forester and they asked me to send 2 fired cases and to properly sized cases along with the die in so they could chevk it out. It was a 30.00 die and not worth the trouble to me

  • @toni you're running a 7mm rem mag aren't you? If so, being that is a belted case, they headspace off the belt, no the shoulder. So, take care there.

  • Yes, 7mm Rem Mag. I'm very confused, how do I have to measure headspace off the belt and how do I have to setup the FL die?

  • Hey Toni

    Did you call the die manufacturer? If so, what did the manufacturer say?

  • Instructions say to install it making contact with the shell holder when the ram is at its uppermost position. Turn the Die another 1/8 to ¼ turn against the shell holder to remove all play from the linkage system of the press. But I am asking on how to setup that die acording to headspace? I was measuring from shoulder to base... I thought I should bump the shoulder back .002 or so.

  • @toni said:

    Instructions say to install it making contact with the shell holder when the ram is at its uppermost position. Turn the Die another 1/8 to ¼ turn against the shell holder to remove all play from the linkage system of the press. But I am asking on how to setup that die acording to headspace? I was measuring from shoulder to base... I thought I should bump the shoulder back .002 or so.

    It will if the shoulder to base is longer than distance from the belt to the shoulder. But on a belted case the headspace is set off the belt.

  • @toni

    The reason I asked if you contacted the die company is that I had an issue with a die and I called the company and after a few questions, the tech support rep had me send in the die and when I got it back, problem was solved for the cost of shipping. I was even able to catch an engineer at one company that was able to provide some interesting insights on what their die could and couldn't do from an engineering point of view. You might benefit from a similar communication. Just my .02.

  • I'll try to email them.

    Another question, is it worth to know the exact length of my chamber or just SAAMI specs for case trim length? I read somewere to let the neck grow just short of this measurment

  • There are various little cartridge plugs that can be used to measure. You can also slice a piece of case mouth off, wedge it on a bullet, and use that. You can also take a wax casting if your chamber.

    In theory, letting your brass grow will expose less barrel to the blast. Not sure I subscribe to any of that. I just know that I let my brass run a bit long because I like longer necks on cases. Just seems to always help in terms of concentricity and uniform bullet release.

  • Thanks, I will get a plug of those and measure it. Can't wait to start reloading!!

  • Tried this method and got the measurement, it's 2.532". The once fired brass I plan to use is 2.501" long, so what would be a good and safe lenght for my cases?


  • 2.520 should be just fine.

  • Perfect, then I'll let grow those cases before triming, thank you.

    A couple more questions, regarding bullet seating depth, affects just horizontal dispersion of groups or vertical too?

    Which is the procedure that works best for you, deprime, size, tumble, prime and load?

  • @toni It can affect both horizontal and vertical.

    Size/decap (fl size), tumble, prime, load.

  • Thank you that's all for now ;)

  • Does anyone know the starting load and max load of N570 powder for 7 Rem Mag shooting 168 vld bergers?

  • @toni checked my Lyman book, it doesn't have that powder listed.

  • Thanks norcal, I have not found anything of this powder for 7 Rem Mag.

  • N560 and N570 powders are sold out here, then I am going to load 154gn hornady interbond bullets while I wait for them to be available. There are N160, N170 (single base powders) and N550 (double base) available, which of them should I choose for that bullet?

  • How much difference there is between CCI 250 magnum and CCI BR-2 primers? which one would you choose for N170 powder (similar burn rate that H1000 powder)?

  • Don’t have a lot of experience with the 250’s and BR-2’s but with the small primers I always test both the 450’s and BR-4’s to see which one gives me the best results. Some loads prefer the BR’s and others prefer the 450’s. I’d try them both and see what works best for you. Also if your loading for large capacity cartridge the 250’s will probably give you the most consistent burn

  • I use CCI-250's in magnum chamberings with less than 80gr of powder. Necessity often causes me to use Fed215M's in larger cartridges with 80+gr of powder.

    Even experienced hang fires in 7NMI with CCI-250's. I first discovered that behavior when I tried using CCI-250's in 375 Cheytac. With retumbo, that's a recipe for hang fires. Fed primers burn hot. Lots of bang. Eliminated hang fires with large charges of retumbo.

  • Thanks, then I will try with the CCI 250, federal's aren't available.

    I also have another question, is it better to anneal by hand (butane torch and drill with shellholder) or not anneal at all?

  • If done properly, the results are good to go. Watch and learn from Orkan's video and apply the principals.
    If you decide to anneal, I would suggest using a deep socket that the case fits in rather than a shellholder and an electric screwdriver instead of a drill for a slower rotation.

  • I'll try it when I start to feel different seating pressures. I was afraid of ruin the cases doing it wrong.

  • Please help me understand the optimal shoulder bump, my chamber measures from bolt face to shoulder around 2.124 and I typically need to fire a new case about 3 times full sizing every time so that the case reaches that lenght. Is a waste of time and resources during this process make load dev?

    What is better to have more case life but maintaining accuracy, bump the shoulder from the first firing or let them grow until it touches the chamber's shoulder and then bump?

  • You're running a 7mm Remington Magnum, which is a belted case. So you headspace off the belt, not the shoulder.

    You need to make sure the shoulder is far enough back to not bind, but basically if you have about .001 to .003 of setback, you should be fine.

    You'll typically want to let them grow until they fill the chamber and bump from there. All cases you're working with must be on the same firing.

  • Ok, and until the cases reach that length is a waste of time to make load developement?

    I'll need to learn a way to measure headspace off the belt, I was measuring it from base to shoulder.

  • You kind of, don't.

    It is where it is. You can't "set it back" like a shoulder.

  • I have measured the diameter of some bullets and I have found that the accubonds measure .283 while bergers measure .284 I wonder what effect this can have?

  • The effect is that some will shoot better than others.

    Hornady's typically run big. I don't care for them.

  • Well I hope that there is none with a higher caliber ...

    As you know I am learning to reload and I wonder if there are some tricks to get more consistency between cartridges, I am full sizing the cases 3 times lately hoping to get more consistency, am I overworking the brass or I discovered one of those tricks?

  • Is that to say you are taking a fired case, and running it through your FL die 3 times before loading it again?

  • That's it, sorry for my bad english.

  • That is completely un-necessary in most instances. Once through the die is plenty.

  • Thanks.