Any Problems With a Particular Brand of Brass? Results Added

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AJGUNNER

Hunter
Joined
Jan 15, 2007
Messages
2,106
I would like to hear any thought on any particular brands of brass that you might have had problems with. I shoot a fair amount of 44 hand loads, and while some is "hot" most is mild. After I see a few comments (hoping for lots) after a few days of bumping this, I will follow up with why I am asking you to share your info. So please share your thoughts on all brass, but keep in mind that my issue seems to be only with 44 mag.
 

Cheesewhiz

Hunter
Joined
Feb 8, 2008
Messages
2,114
I don't load .44 mag but I have heard that Remington can be a bit of an issue with some of their brass. In my loadings I haven't run much Remington but can't recall any problems. I wish you well anyway possible.
 

Jim Puke

Hunter
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Jul 9, 2013
Messages
3,088
I have loaded a PILE of 44 handloads...never had a single issue with any brass.

Now, 45colt was a different issue...until I got rid of my colt stuff, I was always plagued with rim problems...
 

Chuck 100 yd

Hunter
Joined
Mar 20, 2010
Messages
3,251
These days I shoot ,almost exclusively, Star Line brass if available in the caliber needed. The finest rifle brass is Lapua IMHO.
That said, I have and shoot several different brands in the .44 mag. And have had ZERO issues with any. Any company can and have had a bad batch from time to time( rare these days).
 

Rick Courtright

Hawkeye
Joined
Mar 10, 2002
Messages
7,740
Hi,

I'm pretty sure all my current .44 Mag brass is Starline. Not cuz I think it's really any better than the other major brands (W, R and F) I've used, but cuz I could get a bunch of it once upon a time when others were scarce! And now I probably have a lifetime supply of it.

Only revolver brass I won't buy again is from PMC. The stuff I got in a couple of calibers (new brass, not once fired factory stuff) was disappointingly soft and caused a raft of stretched cases even in lowly .38 Spl plinking loads. I also have had enough early case splits with several brands of nickel plated brass that I stay away from it regardless of mfr.

Rick C
 

Rumrunner

Hunter
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Jun 19, 2006
Messages
4,017
I also have had issues with nickel plated brass splitting. I load Federal, Remington, Winchester, and Starline in 44. All without issues.
 

loaded round

Hunter
Joined
Aug 3, 2003
Messages
2,139
I load for two 44 mag pistols and a Ruger Carbine and never had any case problems. I do inspect my fired cases prior to loading and scrap any that are showing minor neck splits from crimping however. I do like Starline brass and use it when loading my 10mm loads since I was given 1000 rounds of new brass.
 

Bucks Owin

Hunter
Joined
Mar 22, 2004
Messages
3,190
Remington.

Bought a100 count bag of new nickle plated .45 LC cases for gunbelt use and about 40 of them had the plating flaking off at the case mouth.My fault for buying anything "big green"... :roll:

Starline, WW or Fed for me...
 

AJGUNNER

Hunter
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Jan 15, 2007
Messages
2,106
No game. Just want non bias experiences before I give up the info. Plus it will take me a few days to get good close up photos.
 

Jimbo357mag

Hawkeye
Joined
Feb 22, 2007
Messages
10,098
Most of my 44 brass came from shooting factory ammo although I just ordered 500 from Starline.
I have found that Federal and Winchester 44 brass is very sturdy.
MagTech is thin and sometimes the base is cock-eyed. I throw a lot of them away but use the rest for mild or medium loads.
Most of my other brands (Remington, PMC, etc.) are just ok, nothing special.

My 357mag and 38special brass follows the 44mag brass findings exactly.

In 30-30 brass I like Federal and Remington but the Hornady cases are exceptional (tighter primer pockets, more uniform and higher quality brass) and more expensive.
 

jbntx

Single-Sixer
Joined
Jan 30, 2012
Messages
199
AJGUNNER said:
... After I see a few comments (hoping for lots) perhaps after a couple of weeks of bumping this, I will follow up with why I am asking you to share your info...

Why not cut to the chase, and tell us now what your concern is?

Or, just use Starline brass and have no problems.
 

dougader

Hunter
Joined
Jun 18, 2008
Messages
3,108
In the 80's I had some soft Starline brass, but's it's all I order now and it's been superior in at least the last 15 years. I have it in 44 Special, 45 Colt (never in my life had a "rim problem" with any 45 Colt), 454, 45 Super, 32 Mag, 327 Federal mag, and 480 Ruger.

I had a new Winchester case that split down the side on it's 2nd light, "cowboy" load. Some Chinese crap in 9mm was as soft as butter and threw it out after the 2nd loading.

I read about Federal 32 mag factory ammo/brass that would split lengthwise on the 1st firing. Since an incident with Federal reporting a Washington hunter (to FBI, ATF) who simply asked for info on their reloading components, I don't buy their products anymore. Screw them.
 

6gun

Hunter
Joined
Oct 10, 2012
Messages
2,580
I've had problems with Starline in 357 mag. over expanding in both brass and nickel plated, plus nickel pealing but no problems in 44 as of yet.
 

AJGUNNER

Hunter
Joined
Jan 15, 2007
Messages
2,106
The reason I asked the way I did, was because I wanted to get true unbiased opinions.

Now for the rest of the story.

I stared reloading right after I bought my first Redhawk back in about 1980 (when they first came out) and figured out this was the only way to be able to afford to feed it. Being new and green, of course I was extra cautious and careful. I very rarely will push the max loads and usually just go around the middle of what the books say for min-max loads. I shot a lot pre wife and kids, then took 10-12 years off from loading---hey life gets busy. :lol: So now that my son is a strapping your guy and loves to shoot, I have gotten back into it starting about 4-5 years ago. I have also gone from housing 1 Redhawk to 5 of them---all in 44 mag and different barrel lengths.

In the past year I have been shooting some stuff that I loaded back in the late 90's and stuff I have loaded recently. I started to see this problem about a year ago but since it was sporadic and just a few, I never gave it a second thought---just tossed them in the trash. While I never could feel or hear any difference in the rounds, I could tell when the brass did not eject easily that I had a problem.

Once I figured out that I was having the same issue more than just a few times, I went looking for a reason. I knocked out a few different loads that I suspected and found nothing out of place as far as powder weights or splits. I also dumped out several boxes of loaded ammo and inspected them for cracks and found nothing---even with the glasses on and using a magnifying glass.

Then I noticed that it was occurring with different loads, different bullet weights and different powders. So now I am thinking that I may have a chamber in one of the cylinders that could be out of spec. I had six different boxes of ammo, all with different loads that had all had the same issue---plus they were being fired from 4 different revolvers.
The next time out I numbered all the chambers on each of the cylinders with a sharpie and started shooting. It wasn't long before I had ruled out the chamber problem. Then I noticed the one thing they all had in common. These all are Winchester brass. I should point out that I am more of a volume loader than a precision loader. I usually don't measure case lengths and don't often clean primer pockets. Just a visual once over as it comes out of the tumbler, and it is good to go again.

I have loaded tons of 44 mag and have seen as many as 8 to 10 different brands of brass come through my press, but have never had an issue besides a split mouth here and there. I have acquired all of my brass from either shooting factory ammo, or from buying new factory brass. While I don't keep track of the number of loads, I find it hard to dispute that the brass is the problem since this is the only brand it has happened with. Sure I guess these could have as many as 6 or 7 loads in them, but I am confident that none of it has over 10. The fact remains that of all sorts of brands of brass I have loaded, this is the only common brass that I have ever had this problem with.

Here are the different loads that these have happened with. If you look these up you will find them right in the middle of the road for book loads.

240gr JHP over 12.5gr of 3N37
240gr JHP over 15.5gr of 3N37
240gr JHP over 11.2gr of N340
240gr JHP over 20.5gr of 2400
240gr LWC over 6.5gr of Unique
240gr LRN over 6.7gr of Unique

So after you have a looked at the photos, I would be happy to respond to questions and welcome any input. If you would like to see the photos full size so you can have a closer look, just PM me an e-mail and I'll send them your way. I believe that those with the red around the primer was from a batch of 500 I bought factory pre-primed.

1%20split%20brass%20002.jpg

1%20split%20brass%20003.jpg

1%20split%20brass%20006.jpg


I am happy to report that I have since started to transition to using only Star-Line brass and have not seen this issue occur again. :D
 

Laserbait

Single-Sixer
Joined
Aug 3, 2010
Messages
406
Was this brass all from one batch, or many different batches?

Was this brass bought new?


I shoot a lot of 44 Mag, and have about 1K of winchester brass, and I don't recall having any fail like that yet in the 20+loading that that they've goth through. My load for the Winchester Brass is a pretty light one though - 7.5 grains of 231 with a 200 grain bullet (usually lead or plated).


I have seen this failure before though with a bad batch of brass from Starline (Alexander Arms headstamp) for my 50 Beowulf, it was 25 out of 100 pieces that did that after a couple of loads. And Starline again with my 454 Casull, about 10 out of 100 after a couple of reloads. Every once in a while, I'll get that crack in another vendors brass too.
 

AJGUNNER

Hunter
Joined
Jan 15, 2007
Messages
2,106
Laserbait said:
Was this brass all from one batch, or many different batches?

Was this brass bought new?

Unlikely from the same batch since it was either bought as new pre-primed or new factory loaded ammo.
 

Cholo

Moderator
Staff member
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Dec 30, 2008
Messages
5,591
Obviously the brass is brittle. Any chance you used a polish in your tumbler that contained ammonia? I've used nothing but Winchester brass for my .44 mags and never had a problem after many loadings. I'm surprised that you kept shooting them.
 

AJGUNNER

Hunter
Joined
Jan 15, 2007
Messages
2,106
I use walnut media and add Dillon blue polish in the tumbler every once in a great while.

I kept shooting them because these were spread out between 6 different boxes. I really didn't figure it out until I took notice of just how many I had split over about 5 different shooting sessions. I do still have some loaded in Winchester brass, but it has just been to dry out here to shoot them up.
 

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