Cartridge case knurling

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Cartridge case knurling

Post by guninhand on Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:41 pm

Hi folks. I'm just getting into Bullesye intricasies and am striving for consistency in my .38 special ammo. I notice differences in the cases even from the same brand name, with no knurling, one knurl band about 1/5 down the case from the case mouth, others with 2 distinct knurls midway. Some of these bands aren't knurled but crimped in. Does it matter if these features are mixed together in my match ammo or is there any advantage to segregating them? I'm using a Dillon 550 and Dillon dies.

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by AllAces on Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:59 pm

I use many different head stamps and see no difference in my 38 DR loads.

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by C.Perkins on Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:51 pm

It could matter with what bullet you load and what type of handgun you are using.

If it is a model 52, then these are my questions.

If a revolver, not so much.

Clarence

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by guninhand on Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:37 pm

The bullet is a .358 148gr swaged hollow base wad cutter in a S&W 14-3. I use a Lyman M die and crimp is 0.364.

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by Larry Lang on Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:14 pm

I use Rem 148g HBWC w/R-P cases. They are the thinnest wall among the available and deform the bullet less. I don't resize, I bell enough so that the bullet will set into the case mouth and I crimp using a Lee factory crimp die. These feed and shoot well in my 1911 .38 SPL.

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by guninhand on Sat Dec 01, 2012 4:40 pm

I never thought of not sizing at all. I'll make a test batch and see what happens.

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by noylj on Sun Dec 02, 2012 12:59 am

The cannelure is flattened out at the first firing and no longer serves any purpose. Ignore it.
I agree totally with Larry Lang. The only reason to size is to chamber in a revolver.
The "tricks" used by benchrest shooters are mostly unproved and done because they can't hurt.
Those tricks are meaningless in pistols.
I have shot hundreds of test groups in .38 Spl, .45 Auto, and 9x19 comparing the exact same load and loading process with sorted and EXTREMELY mixed cases (unknown headstamps, nickel cases, etc.) and in each cartridge, the mixed brass has averaged a slightly smaller group size than the sorted batch, so I conclude that sorting cases for any purpose from 50 yards and in makes no difference.
However, if you think it does, then sort for the peace of mind.
Likewise, NEVER trim any case that headspaces on the mouth. All you are doing is increasing head space.
In .45, I use lead bullets and have almost always used the bullet to determine head space.
In 9x19, I sort sized cases and only use the longest ones for serious competition.
For .38 Spl, head space is off the rim, so I trim cases to a uniform length for a consistent the roll crimp, which is very slight.
The ONLY combination I have found that produces consistently better accuracy then factory rounds in my M52s is:
Rem. 148gn L-HBWCs (also the least expensive bullets)
Unsized cases, of which I use RP cases because, as Larry said, the walls are thinnest and you DO NOT want to swage down the bullet at all.
Severe case mouth flare so bullet is practically half-way seated to begin with
A Redding Profile Crimp die for the roll crimp
AA2 and 231/HP38 have been the most consistently accurate in my M52s.

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by guninhand on Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:41 am

Thanks noylj and Larry.It's great to be started in the right direction. I already began loading with unsized cases and the only problem is the bullet is a bit below flush with the case mouth in a few instances which I think is due to being pushed down by the rollover operation in the final crimping stage, so I will back off on the crimp.

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Re: Cartridge case knurling

Post by guninhand on Mon Dec 03, 2012 6:17 pm

Thanks to all who helped me out. I trimmed my RP cases and loaded a batch in unsized cases. Below is the best of 3 targets I shot outdoors off sand bags at 20 meters, the other 2 nearly as good. I used 2.3 grains of Trail Boss cause that's what was already in the hopper. Oddly all the RP cases were fairly short, averaging 1.140 inch. I've had the 14-3 less than a week and haven't moved the sights.


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Re: Cartridge case knurling

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