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Thread: Why will you not use NICKEL plated cases?

  1. #1
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    starreloader's Avatar
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    Why will you not use NICKEL plated cases?

    I have read on here so many times that "I won't/don't use NICKEL plated brass".. My question is, "Why will you not use NICKEL plated brass?"..
    Viet Nam 11/66 to 3/68

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    No idea...
    I use them all the time and have never had a problem with them.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

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    I use them but prefer brass. I inspect the nickel cases mouths closer as Ive had the nickel flake / chip leaving a sharp edge. I'm afraid of this edge possibly scratching dies or a chamber. I normally don't get as many loads out of the nickel cases as the brass. Also on a gravel firing line finding the nickel can be harder.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

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    I like them. Makes getting mine back easier.

  5. #5
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    fiberoptik's Avatar
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    I never knew why they even made them.


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  6. #6
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    Love them,think they look real sharp with powder coated boolits!

  7. #7
    Boolit Master Hick's Avatar
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    I don't go out of my way to buy them-- but use them when I get them. Never had a problem with them
    Hick: Iron sights!

  8. #8
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    I have had nickle flake off and get in a die. I also believe Nickle splits easier. I still use some if the price is right. I bought 500 primed 32 long nickle cases for $20 a few years back.
    [The Montana Gianni] Front sight and squeeze

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
    runfiverun's Avatar
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    I have had a number of them split on the first or second firing.
    it seems like if they make it past that point I can use them until the nickel is gone and they turn yellow again.
    it's all an educated guess,,,, till the trigger is pulled.

    this opinion brought to you by mister low-tech solution..

  10. #10
    Boolit Master


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    I prefer them for fighting ammo. Better lubricity to aid extraction, no brass corrosion. I load practice in brass, fighting in nickel so a glance tells me which is which.

    Nickel is softer (way) than even un-hardened steel so there is no chance of it scratching a chamber or a die.


    Cat
    Cogito, ergo armatum sum.

    (I think, therefore I'm armed.)

  11. #11
    Boolit Master lefty o's Avatar
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    dont have any problem using them.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

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    They split faster than regular brass and I have encountered nickel brass sticking before yellow does when load testing.
    More "This is what happened when I,,,,," and less "What would happen if I,,,,"

    "Control the things you can control, maggot. Let everything else take a flying (leap) at you, and if you must go down, go down with your guns blazing."- The Dark Tower, Steven King


  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Splitting issues

    Three44s

  14. #14
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    Bullwolf's Avatar
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    I've had nickel plating come off a case, and get embedded in a sizing die.

    Sucks when it happens. Scratches all the rest of the cases that you size afterwards using those dies (both brass and nickel) until you get the embedded nickel out of the sizing die.

    Even had it happen to a carbide RCBS 38/357 sizing die, and Carbide is MUCH harder than steel. Managed to polish the embedded nickel out of the carbine sizing ring with a split dowel and some JB bore cleaning compound, and some Flitz metal polish. The size die worked fine again, after polishing.



    Like everyone else I've found that some nickel plated cases seem to split right away, (first firing) and others won't split for many firing and sizing cycles.

    Few weeks ago I found 15 pieces of W.W. 38 Special, nickel plated, double cannelure, full wad cutter brass. 4 of those 15 cases split during sizing & flaring.

    Alternatively I have some 38 Special +P Federal nickel plated cases that I've sized and fired so many times that the nickel plating is almost entirely worn off the cases, and they mostly look like yellow brass again.

    Not sure why sometimes they last, and other times they go to heck so fast.

    I'll happily use nickel plated cases for the added corrosion resistance, especially with leather cartridge loops.



    - Bullwolf

  15. #15
    Boolit Master

    alamogunr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bullwolf View Post
    I've had nickel plating come off a case, and get embedded in a sizing die.

    Sucks when it happens. Scratches all the rest of the cases that you size afterwards using those dies (both brass and nickel) until you get the embedded nickel out of the sizing die.

    Even had it happen to a carbide RCBS 38/357 sizing die, and Carbide is MUCH harder than steel. Managed to polish the embedded nickel out of the carbine sizing ring with a split dowel and some JB bore cleaning compound, and some Flitz metal polish. The size die worked fine again, after polishing.



    Like everyone else I've found that some nickel plated cases seem to split right away, (first firing) and others won't split for many firing and sizing cycles.

    Few weeks ago I found 15 pieces of W.W. 38 Special, nickel plated, double cannelure, full wad cutter brass. 4 of those 15 cases split during sizing & flaring.

    Alternatively I have some 38 Special +P Federal nickel plated cases that I've sized and fired so many times that the nickel plating is almost entirely worn off the cases, and they mostly look like yellow brass again.

    Not sure why sometimes they last, and other times they go to heck so fast.

    I'll happily use nickel plated cases for the added corrosion resistance, especially with leather cartridge loops.



    - Bullwolf
    I know that hydrogen embrittlement can be a problem with threaded fasteners that are plated. The same may hold true for plated brass. There are processes that prevent embrittlement but they may not always be followed.
    John
    W.TN

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    sadly the only two 38 special factory loads I like come nickel plated. hence ill have nickel laying around somewhere.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master Artful's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catshooter View Post
    I prefer them for fighting ammo. Better lubricity to aid extraction, no brass corrosion. I load practice in brass, fighting in nickel so a glance tells me which is which.

    Nickel is softer (way) than even un-hardened steel so there is no chance of it scratching a chamber or a die.


    Cat
    Note: it is captured by the die and scratches the brass you put in. That's why I quit using them.
    je suis charlie

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  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    Some say they split/crack faster. I have never seen that. They are great for storage in leather bandolier cart belts! Not any gunk or corrosion of brass.

    I like Ni cases! And have tons of them. Found several hundred pounds of them at a local scrap yard last year. $2 a pound for 223 thru 45 cal cases! 30-06 loads look really COOL with Ni cases.
    Banger

    Banger

  19. #19
    Boolit Master
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    My question is, "Why will you not use NICKEL plated brass?"..
    MORE ABOUT NICKEL PLATING.... This is interesting about the mechanical properties of the nickel plating:
    Electrolysis nickel plating is a process for chemically applying nickel-alloy deposits onto metallic substrates using an auto catalytic immersion process without the use of electrical current. ...snip....
    Hardness and Wear Resistance
    One of the most important properties for many applications is hardness. As deposited, the micro-hardness of electrolysis nickel coatings is about 500 to 700 HK100. That is approximately equal to 45 to 58 HRC and equivalent to many hardened alloy steels. Heat treatment causes these alloys to precipitation harden and can produce hardness values as high as 1100 HK100, equal to most commercial hard chromium coatings. ...snip...

    Note that if you anneal your nickel plated necks, you are hardening the nickel plating. It can be harder than many alloyed steels before you anneal and can increase is hardness as much as 2 fold by precipitation hardening. I sure wouldn't want those tiny little hard pieces inside the neck getting embedded in the bullet's copper surface and then fire lapping my nice shiny barrel.

    http://www.varmintal.com/arelo.htm#Nickel_Brass
    That is why I no longer mess with Nickel plated brass, with the very few cases I use in leather hoops which are removed when I take the belt off.

    YMMV

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
    lylejb's Avatar
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    I load 357 in nickel and 38 in brass. At a glance sorting and no doubt which loads I'm grabbing. I've never had any unusual problem with splits and only a couple have flaked. I load with rcbs carbide dies and haven't had a problem yet. Maybe I'm just lucky.
    NRA life member

    LB

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