Bras Prep

Today, we’ll dive into the tools needed to prep your brass. This is imperative before you even start to load.

I do not size brand new virgin brass for my chamber, but I will measure it to see how much it grows. After measuring, I load it with the desired primer, powder and bullet. Before we get too far let’s talk about once fired or fired from your chamber brass.

With a fired case, especially since I shoot suppressed 99.9% of the time, I tumble my brass to clean it so I don’t get my reloading dies dirty and grimy.

Once this is done, I use the Hornady headspace comparator to measure my brass that has come out of my chamber. Not your buddies chamber or a new piece of brass. This must be from the gun you are reloading for. All chambers are different and this is why you need this measurement.

Using the headspace comparator, look at the chart to find your caliber or your parent case for your caliber. I’ll be measuring my wildcat that I designed, the Super6. This caliber uses 22 Nosler as the parent case. With that said, the comparator insert is the letter A, same as the 223.

When measuring with your calipers, if using a digital caliper, zero out your caliper once the headspace comparator and the correct bushing is in. If you use an old school one like I use, just write the overall number, in this case from our fired case it’s 3.461.

Now that we have our fired case from this particular chamber measured, we can set up our full length sizing die, in my case a 22 nosler die with a 6mm expander ball and a neck bushing that i felt worked best for my bullet selection. This number is .001-.002 from our fired case.  Now 3.459

Once I get my case to where I want(that .001-.002), I put an empty piece of brass into the chamber to see if it ejects easily. If it’s stuck, your shoulder wasn’t pushed back far enough.

Be careful not to resize your die too much, as this will cause unwanted stretching of the brass and you’ll have accuracy issues and a potentially dangerous case head separation.

Once the brass is properly sized, its ready to be trimmed if necessary. There are a ton of books and websites available to check the proper length of your brass.

Lastly before we load our brass, I choose to chamfer the case mouths, this can be done with a manual tool or an electronic one like the RCBS case prep center.

I hope this helps with loading for your sdrifles build or any other rifle that you have.

Next article we’ll take a look at priming, measuring powder and seating bullets.