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Thread: Bad luck reloading lately

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Bad luck reloading lately

    I've had some problems with trying to reload for my dads old 264 Win. lately. I got the rifle when dad passed away four of five years ago, it was a gun that I made for him about 35 years ago. My old handloads were starting to crack and give out after three or four loads. So I got a hundred round of brass from one of the members here. I think they were all proof loads for all had stretched primer pockets and extruded marks from the ejector holes. So I destroyed all of these cases by crushing the case mouths, and into the scrap brass they went. Then I was at the local gun store the other day and what did I discover! A hundred brand new cases by Winchester! I thought I was set for life. When I started processing them, I always full length resize, trim, then prime and load. Much to my surprise I found 21 brand new cases with folds in the necks, cracks in the necks, crush marks on the shoulders. So I only have 79 cases out of the hundred that didn't have flaws. I would like to send them to Winchester, for there quality control sure wasn't working that day these went through the line. But I have been unable to find any kind of a place where that can be done. At the same time the Leupold scope that I put on the rifle thirty five years ago gave up the ghost. I sent it back to Leupold and they did an amazing job of rebuilding it! They replaced the lenses and worked over the insides and it is just like new! At least on the inside. I have it sighted in with a different scope at the moment and will leave it there until spring for I am now hunting elk with the old girl. The toolman.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master 308Jeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Tempe, AZ
    Been hearing lots of reports about Winchester brass lately. Hate to hear that it's still a problem.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Kent Fowler's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Between Hondo and Bandera
    Started prepping some once fired Winchester 270 cases for my SIL. When I went to clean the primer pocket with my little Sinclair tool, which only takes a couple small twists, the tool never did bottom out and kept cutting. Looked at the primer hole and there was a rim around it. The tool kept trimming the ring and I gave up before I reached the bottom of the pocket. Thinking about taking a couple of those cases to a jeweler I know and let him section the bases where I can see what's happening. The primer pocket is different from any other boxer primed case I've seen, it's more like a Berdan pocket.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    I'm sorry to hear about your bad luck! Too bad we could not connect on the brass that I had listed but I was already working with another member. I'm kinda hoping that StarLine can expand their new line of rifle brass to cover some of these hard to get calibers.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master Cowboy_Dan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Northern Indiana
    I don't have any experience myself, but I have heard that the belted magnum chambers (at least in factory guns) tend to be a bit generous in the shoulder area. Couple that with your experienced difficulty in findjng brass, and I would baby any I could find. As in neck sizing and oly partial full-length sizing, and only then when needed. Just my $1.05 ($.02 plus inflation).
    "It is wrong always, everywhere, and for everyone to believe anything on insufficient evidence."
    -W. K. Clifford "The Ethics of Belief"

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  6. #6
    Boolit Master
    AZ Pete's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    I would contact Winchester and tell them your experience, along with the lot number of the brass. http://www.winchester.com/product-se...ontact-us.aspx

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    NRA Endowment Life Member

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    I've sent a message along with pictures of the brass problems to Winchester, will let everyone know how it turns out. toolman.

  8. #8
    I'm A Honcho!

    shdwlkr's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    moved to Idaho
    strange issues with .264 win mag brass, I loaded up maybe 150 for a friend as he was doing a load and powder workup. I think that brass was Hornady and Nosler don't remember now but it loaded up fine the first and second loading don't know anymore as he now has he reloading area up and running.
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  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Not exactly on point with the problems described here, but I have reloaded Weatherby cartridges for many years and I don't think I would reload belted cartridges if not for using the Wilson adjustable case gauge for each individual rifle. The gauges save brass.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    I hope that those new 264 Win Mag cases weren't NOS. Strange things happen to brass just from aging and not even using them. Bought a box of Norma 7.65 Argentine cartridges over 20 years ago. I had a couple carbines I was shooting and the rounds were just fine. Flash forward that amount of time and I picked up a 1909 Argentine. Took it out with those same Norma cartridges and everyone of them split and not just the necks! I went back to the house and got one of the carbines that shot them well 20 years ago. Dang if the same thing didn't happen. Long splits. I pulled the bullets and junked the remainer of the cases.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
    runfiverun's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    soda springs Id.
    I have had trouble with older Norma brass also.
    it always wants to split the neck.

    I have taken to pulling any factory stuff down after about 20 years, and annealing even new unused brass if it has been sitting very long.
    it's all an educated guess,,,, till the trigger is pulled.

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

  12. #12
    Boolit Bub
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Summers in N.E. PA, Winters in Central Florida
    Winchester's brass isn't the only thing they are having QC problems with, I've had NEW WWB 9 MM cartridges that were all scrunched down on one side of the case-- They looked like some of my very first handloads, from over 60 years ago! Sheesh!

  13. #13
    Boolit Man McFred's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    I'm sure they'll listen to "Reason"
    While you're at it check the case weight extreme spread. Depending on what you're doing with the Magnum cases, that can lead to velocity spread issues and point-of-impact changes. Nobody's perfect but I did get a couple extra bags of brass after contacting the seller for these cases:

    Good that you contacted the maker. I hope they reimburse you for/replace the defective cases. I don't mind the dinged shoulders as I figure I'll iron them out sooner than later. I generally prep all my cases too: deburr, size, trim, uniform pockets, weight-sort etc. before I load up new brass too.

    For people splitting necks on older brass, was any of it annealed before you used old cases? Storing any brass around ammonia will also heavily shorten its shelf life.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check