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Thread: How Do I Anneal A Batch Of .40 S&W to 750-Degrees Reliably?

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy Liberty1776's Avatar
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    How Do I Anneal A Batch Of .40 S&W to 750-Degrees Reliably?

    I want to soften, say, 100-200 .40 S&W shells for reforming to something else. I think I need to heat them to about 750 degrees F.

    One way to anneal is to put them in a self-cleaning oven and let it run its cleaning cycle. Unfortunately, we don't own a self-cleaning oven.

    Any ideas short of a $4,000 lab oven...

    ...or a $1400 machinist's heat treating oven https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ST3yf-H51Hg

    http://barzindustrial.com/productimages/hsduplex.pdf

    ...or a $585 jewelry melting kiln https://smile.amazon.com/Rapidfire-D...3879826&sr=8-5

    ...would be appreciated.

    Put the shells in a cast iron skillet and cook them on a stove until they seem hot enough? Point a laser thermometer at them?

    Drop them in an empty Lee lead pot and cook them?

    Ideas?

  2. #2
    AKA: GRMPS Conditor22's Avatar
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    clean casting pot set to the desired temp and put in the brass.

    cover pot to keep the heat in
    Last edited by Conditor22; 07-04-2021 at 01:17 AM.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master OldBearHair's Avatar
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    I do believe that the best thing for you to do would be to go to the "Forum" and read about "How to anneal brass cases. But, the most important thing is that you must not anneal the whole cases in an oven. Please do not be offended. No harm meant. If you are a "newby" here, welcome to the forum.

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    Boolit Master OldBearHair's Avatar
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    I did not catch the first thing you said about reforming to something else, but I would still not want to get the bases of the brass annealed. But, I have no experience with that.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

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    old bear hair made the best comment, "search brass annealing on the forum". the search bar can be your best friend.

    heres a hint, use your lead pot.
    if you are ever being chased by a taxidermist, don't play dead

  6. #6
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    With pistol brass it’s best to try and trade it to someone for the brass you really want. Are you trying to form 357sig?

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    Boolit Bub wilecoyote's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zarrinvz24 View Post
    With pistol brass it’s best to try and trade it to someone for the brass you really want. Are you trying to form 357sig?
    no_
    please:
    https://castboolits.gunloads.com/sho...76#post5208976
    ...next thing you know they'll want your pistol and your tobacco...

  8. #8
    Boolit Grand Master
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    To anneal the whole case, you could float them on top of your lead pot to do a few at a time. Or you could heat the whole case with a propane torch.

    Not very scientific, but it would soften the brass. For more control you could use some tempilac for closer control of the heating process.

    Robert

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    Boolit Buddy
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    Is the OP trying to swage them into jacketed bullets? It was not specified, and seemed to me that OP was going to case form from 40 to another caliber. Perhaps I misread? This is the case forming section though and not the swaging sub-forum.

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    Boolit Buddy Liberty1776's Avatar
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    Never mind. I thought my question was properly posed to the Case Forming/Re-Forming thread. I chose...poorly.

    But I do desire to anneal the entire .40 case -- including and especially the rim -- because it's going to become a .44 Mag jacketed soft point bullet after swaging.

    I'll go away quietly.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy Jim22's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liberty1776 View Post
    Never mind. I thought my question was properly posed to the Case Forming/Re-Forming thread. I chose...poorly.

    But I do desire to anneal the entire .40 case -- including and especially the rim -- because it's going to become a .44 Mag jacketed soft point bullet after swaging.

    I'll go away quietly.
    Don't. The comments were meant to help. By saying you want to anneal the entire case you have helped them help you.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master OldBearHair's Avatar
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    Now I finally understand that you need to anneal the whole case for a jacket. On a previous post, I described how I annealed 22 brass before beginning stepping them up to just over 308 diameter in several steps and after each step up, by using DIY rods fitted to drive into the brass filled with water. The brass would then slide off the rod easily. The reason that I mention this is that a very small percentage was lost in the process. Should you want to size the 40s down in more than one step, then anneal each time.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master

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    Don't go away! Go to the Swaging subforum and ask there!
    Service members, veterans and those concerned about their mental health can call the Veterans Crisis Line to speak to trained professionals. To talk to someone, call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, send a text message to 838255 or chat at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.

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  14. #14
    Boolit Grand Master

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    One way is to get out an old metal bucket. put a couple layers of charcoal briquettes in to then light add the brass wrapped in aluminum foil (add some strips of paper to burn off oxygen and reduce scale) add a couple more layers of briquettes and let burn till out and cool. This will soften the thicker heads and rims.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Clean your Lee pot and fill it with brass.

    Find the swaging subforum, it’s full of good info.

  16. #16
    Boolit Buddy Liberty1776's Avatar
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    I started at the Swaging Forum. I thought annealing wisdom would be at the Case Forming forum.

    Here's my ".44 Mag Jacketed Soft Points From Trimmed .40 S&W Brass" thread in the Swaging Forum.

    https://castboolits.gunloads.com/sho...7mm-Mauser-Die

    All I wanted to know is the cheapest, fasted way to soften brass cases so they emulate a copper jacket.

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy Liberty1776's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mk42gunner View Post
    To anneal the whole case, you could float them on top of your lead pot to do a few at a time. Or you could heat the whole case with a propane torch.

    Not very scientific, but it would soften the brass. For more control you could use some tempilac for closer control of the heating process.

    Robert
    I put a bunch of .40's into a cast iron skillet and blasted them with a propane torch. No idea if I hit the annealing temp.

    Later, I purchased an expensive bottle of 750-degree Tempilaq. It was disappointing to use. I'll try the floating-on-molten-lead method next time. At least I'll know how hot the lead is....

    I made some .44 Mag JSP slugs successfully. Loaded and shot some. I just don't know if the brass jacket was soft enough not to damage my Marlin's rifle bore.
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    Last edited by Liberty1776; 06-16-2021 at 11:02 PM.

  18. #18
    Boolit Buddy Liberty1776's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rancher1913 View Post
    old bear hair made the best comment, "search brass annealing on the forum". the search bar can be your best friend.

    heres a hint, use your lead pot.
    I did a search. The word "anneal" appears 2500 times on this website. Most returns don't answer my question at all.

  19. #19
    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by Liberty1776 View Post
    I did a search. The word "anneal" appears 2500 times on this website. Most returns don't answer my question at all.
    There is a whole section for swaging : https://castboolits.gunloads.com/for...php?41-Swaging

    Here is the relevant thread: https://castboolits.gunloads.com/sho...ealing-Jackets

    I enjoyed your other post, and especially your bullet board, I have previously seen other threads explaining the process, and even acquired the appropriate dies. When I did mine, though I only did a few, I used my pot to anneal the brass, and it worked pretty good, and I needed to cast the cores anyway.
    Last edited by Omega; 06-16-2021 at 11:34 PM. Reason: Add link
    "Freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it."
    ~Pericles~

  20. #20
    Boolit Master

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    dont just use one word, ask the search bar a question like "best way to anneal for swagging", you got to be as specific as possible.

    take an empty lead pot, fill it half full of brass, turn it on and when the brass is glowing turn it off and dump it out. does about 20 or so big calibers and a crap ton of 22's, its not as fast as a dedicated kiln but it works.
    if you are ever being chased by a taxidermist, don't play dead

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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