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308win (m1a) reloading
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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squirrelbait
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Location: Nottingham, NH

PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2008 6:03 pm    Post subject: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Well, I'm new at reloading military brass (or not reloading it as it seems to be). I jumped without thinking......normal for me Sad , tried to fl resize some military brass and broke the de-priming pin off my brand new lee fl resizing die. Mad
I had bought some cheap 7.62 ammo. Is there anyway of knowing whether the brass you find/have is reloadable or not?
Can I use std 308win. die and reload for a friends m1a?
I'm open for inputs............and a few jabs Confused
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popgun
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2008 8:35 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

squirrelbait wrote:
Well, I'm new at reloading military brass (or not reloading it as it seems to be). I jumped without thinking......normal for me Sad , tried to fl resize some military brass and broke the de-priming pin off my brand new lee fl resizing die. Mad
I had bought some cheap 7.62 ammo. Is there anyway of knowing whether the brass you find/have is reloadable or not?
Can I use std 308win. die and reload for a friends m1a?
I'm open for inputs............and a few jabs Confused

I can only recommend that you never reload for a friend. It's bad juju if one of your reloads damages a friends rifle or injures the rifle owner. The family will never let you or your finances rest after that. Kind of like child support but it is not your kids getting the money.

Before you try to load for a M1-A you need to do a great deal of research on reloading that rifle. It has specific pressures range that it requires for operation without damaging the action and moving parts. Just a little too much and you do expensive damage to the rifle. If your friends M1-A is still in warranty he would void the warranty it if he uses reloads during the warranty period. The rifle has specific powders that result in the proper pressure curve for the rifle. Like I mentioned, do a lot of research before reloading for the M1-A. If you go this route be sure to look into small base dies also. Cases run through a small base die never cause a stuck case in the chamber.

Most all military brass have crimped in primers, that is why you broke the depriming pin. I recomend a universal depriming die for all of your depriming. It is an extra step in the reloading process but you don't dammage your sizing die in the process. If you continue to use your sizing die to deprime military brass slow down your sizing operation and take care that the case is properly centered and seated in the case holder and deprime slowly.

By the way a quick call to RCBS (if your using RCBS dies) will get you 5 or so depriming pins in the mail within a week at no charge.

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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2008 9:24 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Standard remark ... Read the manuals first!

Check to see if the "cheap brass" you have is Boxer or Berdan primed. The Berdan style (two flash holes) will break your decapping pin.

Speer manual #14 has reloading info specifically for the 7.62 NATO for M1As, etc..

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"I ain't no better than anyone else, and there ain't no one better than me!" Ma Kettle

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popgun
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2008 10:00 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

This article is a good place to start your research into loading for the M1-A.
M1-A Reloading Information

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Vince
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2008 11:33 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Punpkin wrote:
Check to see if the "cheap brass" you have is Boxer or Berdan primed. The Berdan style (two flash holes) will break your decapping pin.

Punkin is correct. I have never seen any military 7.62mm NATO ammo that does not have twin flash holes.

They can be reloaded, but finding the primers can be difficult and the actual process, I believe, is rather tedious. The decapping process is done hydraulically from what I've heard.

If you can get your surplus 7.62mm NATO ammo nice and cheap, but don't like the FMJ bullet in it, then pull the bullet and replace it with a sporting bullet of the SAME WEIGHT...utilising the powder charge already in the mil round. This way you won't get all upset about loosing a few cases if it happens because you won't be reloading them.

I must reiterate what Popgun said....

Popgun wrote:
I can only recommend that you never reload for a friend. It's bad juju if one of your reloads damages a friends rifle or injures the rifle owner. The family will never let you or your finances rest after that. Kind of like child support but it is not your kids getting the money.

Before you try to load for a M1-A you need to do a great deal of research on reloading that rifle. It has specific pressures range that it requires for operation without damaging the action and moving parts. Just a little too much and you do expensive damage to the rifle. If your friends M1-A is still in warranty he would void the warranty it if he uses reloads during the warranty period. The rifle has specific powders that result in the proper pressure curve for the rifle. Like I mentioned, do a lot of research before reloading for the M1-A.

This is very sage advice.

Cheers, Vince

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Illegitimi non carborundum
(Never let the bastards grind you down)

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.

"Nulla Si Fa Senza Volonta."
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squirrelbait
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:22 am    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Damn, guys, there is a WHOLE lot more to attempting to reload for the old M-14 than I would ever have thought. Shocked
Thanks much for your responses. I think I may pass on this one......and stay out of trouble.
This place is always a wealth of info.................and fun reads.
thanks.
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whittling
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:23 am    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

M1-A I'm getting green with envy.You need to be careful when loading milsurp ammo brass .

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FALPhil
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2008 11:10 am    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Pumpkinslinger wrote:
Standard remark ... Read the manuals first!

Check to see if the "cheap brass" you have is Boxer or Berdan primed. The Berdan style (two flash holes) will break your decapping pin.

Speer manual #14 has reloading info specifically for the 7.62 NATO for M1As, etc..

Excellent advice.

The only milsurp I have ever seen which is boxer primed is Lake City, and it is headstamped 'LC' with the last two digits of the year and some other designation.



I don't much like Lake City in 308 because it is harder to size than commercial brass and case mouths split after 7 or 8 loadings despite annealing. IMI brass is soft and primer pockets get loose after about 5 loadings. So, I pretty much stick to Remington and Winchester, but I have a few hundred Hornady and Federal cases.

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Vince
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2008 6:49 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

FALPhil wrote:
I don't much like Lake City in 308 because it is harder to size than commercial brass and case mouths split after 7 or 8 loadings despite annealing. IMI brass is soft and primer pockets get loose after about 5 loadings. So, I pretty much stick to Remington and Winchester, but I have a few hundred Hornady and Federal cases.

I can't speak for other manufacturers of military ammo, but, the brass cases of military ammo manufactured here in Australia, for the aussie Defence Force, is meant to be returned to the factory where it is recycled.

They melt it down and re-manufacture it into new brass cases for the "next" batch of military ammo.

FAL, I think you will find that the reason it is harder to resize than commercial brass is because the case walls are thicker and the brass is a harder alloy to make it less prone to damage in a military scenario to avoid feeding problems when the hordes are "coming over the hill". Also, as mentioned above, it is not intended for reloading.

Cheers, Vince

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Illegitimi non carborundum
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Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.

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Grumulkin
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:39 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Well gentlemen, I actually reload for an M1A.

1. The Hornady manual has a special section on M1A reloading. I would recommend it.
2. You will probably not need a small base die. A standard die will probably work fine. The M1A and M1 Garand aren't too finicky in this regard.
3. A lot of military brass is Boxer primed and a lot Berdan primed. The boxer primed brass works well but will probably take 1.5 to 2 grains less powder to equal the same pressure you would get with ordinary civilian brass.
4. You should not use too slow a powder or you can bend the op rod. I use IMR 4064 and get good accuracy with it.
5. Consider using military spec primers (CCI makes them). There is a potential risk of the cartridge firing without the bolt completely closed with regular primers. I believe the risk is there since others have experienced this problem but I've never had it with mine and I've always used Federal 210M primers.
6. I've broken one RCBS decapping pin in depriming a lot of military brass. RCBS sent me a packet of replacements absolutely free. I have a number of Lee dies but Lee only gives a 2 year warranty while the RCBS warranty is lifetime.
7. Once I've deprimed military cases, I look for eccentric flash holes and discard brass where the flash holes aren't centered. I then use a primer pocket uniformer to remove the military crimp. Once you've done quality control on Boxer primed military brass, it's some of the best there is.

As others have said, don't reload for someone else.
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squirrelbait
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 4:59 am    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Grumulkin, thanks for that response. I'ver read a couple of articles now and based on what you've added I may give it a try........just to try it at this point.
thanks
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FALPhil
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 8:10 am    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Grumulkin wrote:

5. Consider using military spec primers (CCI makes them). There is a potential risk of the cartridge firing without the bolt completely closed with regular primers. I believe the risk is there since others have experienced this problem but I've never had it with mine and I've always used Federal 210M primers.

This is probably the best advice in your post, considering the travesty of justice concerning David Olofson.

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English Mike
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 6:43 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Hey Vince:

Some of your own Aussie surplus is Boxer primed - headstamped AF 91 & AF 94 IIRC.
I blew through more half a case before one of the "Brass Rats" noticed & told me. Crying or Very sad

Indian 70's OFV is decent brass & Boxer primed too.
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Crackshot
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 7:20 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

Dont let everyone scare you! Reloading for the M1A is not that difficult. Ive been doing it for 21 years with no problems.
Use IMR 4064 or H414 and the bullet weight that best suits your barrel twist. Start with the minimum suggested load and go up in .5 grain increments until you find the "sweet" load.
Mine is 41.5gr IMR 4064 under a Sierra 168gr BTHP Match in Federal match brass with CCI Benchrest primers (properly seated).

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Vince
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 11:06 pm    Post subject: Re: 308win (m1a) reloading Reply with quote

English Mike wrote:
Hey Vince:

Some of your own Aussie surplus is Boxer primed - headstamped AF 91 & AF 94 IIRC.
I blew through more half a case before one of the "Brass Rats" noticed & told me. Crying or Very sad

Indian 70's OFV is decent brass & Boxer primed too.

Yep, thats right Mike. All of our 5.56mm ammo is Boxer primed, whereas our 7.62mm NATO is Berdan primed. Of course we don't use very much of that stuff anymore since adopting the F88 Austeyr.

Even though our 5.56mm is Boxer primed, the brass is still heavier and thicker than civvy brass. This must be taken into account when reloading it.

I think from memory the .30 cal BMG and the .50 cal BMG rounds are Boxer primed...although we don't use a lot of that these days either.

Cheers, Vince

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Illegitimi non carborundum
(Never let the bastards grind you down)

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.

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(Without Commitment, Nothing Gets Done)
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