before enlightenment; trim, chamfer, measure.


Back in September of 2010 I wrote a post called the zen of reloading. Heres a sample of what I was writing about.

Did that for about 2 hours…

I have been using reloads to do the bulk of my training lately. I have a 1K lot of .223 that I have been shooting and then reloading till the cases wear out. So. In the aftermath of my recent day out shooting, I gathered up what spent brass I could find, took it home and started it through the process.

  • Quick clean in a container with water and dish soap to wash off any heavy dirt.
  • A couple hours in the vibratory tumbler.

Today I started on the next stage;

  • Inspect the cases and toss any that are showing excessive wear.
  • Lubricate the cases.
  • Run the cases through a LEE decapping/resizing die.
  • Trim/Chamfer/Primer pocket clean/Measure (shown in video).
  • Retumble brass with some brass cleaning/polishing additive included so that they come out looking like this:

From there I called it a day. So next session I will;

  • Reinspect the brass again.
  • Prime 50 rounds.
  • Charge 50 cases w/Winchester 748.
  • Seat 50 bullets (Hornady 55gr FMJBT).
  • Crimp 50 case mouths.

I have about 100 cases to reload but I will typically only do 50 at a time so that my attention remains sharp. I have found that when my attention lags things like double charging or forgetting to charge happens. Double charging with W748 isn’t really a problem because it will overflow. Forgetting to charge can be dangerous. Let’s just say that I have a greater appreciation for case crimping.

I am still an amateur reloader and I use a single stage press which means that I have to do many of these steps one “stage” at a time. Any of you experienced reloaders out there with hints, tips or tricks for me feel free to post them in the comments.

Eventually, if I keep doing this long enough I may move up to a “Progressive” reloading press that has a turret set-up which allows priming, charging, seating and crimping to be done in “assembly line fashion”.

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One thought on “before enlightenment; trim, chamfer, measure.”

  1. I was a happy camper when I bought the shell plate for my progressive press that would allow me to use it for the prime and load portion of the process. It made it a little bit more zen-like.

    It’s that step of “Trim/Chamfer/Primer pocket clean/Measure” that just drives me insane when loading .223. I don’t mind doing it for my .243 or .30-06, but I’m only doing at most 50 at a time. If I could find a cheap way to do that faster, it would make that pile of brass I have look less daunting.

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