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Would anyone care to opine on the subject of fire forming cases?

A shooting buddy told me that he fire forms his 6mm XC cases by using light loads of inexpensive pistol powder and shooting various bullets that are unsuitable for competition. The benefit is that costs are reduced and there is less wear and tear on competition barrels. He apparently uses published load information to ensure that loads are neither too hot or cold. He adds that the results if a fully blown out case that conforms to the dimensions of his tight neck 6XC chamber.

Would appreciate any comments or experiences, especially safety related.
 

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A good rule of thumb for fire forming is to use a bullet that is middling to heavy, for caliber, with a fairly light charge of relatively fast burning powder. The key is to seat the bullets long, so they engage the rifling as you close whatever kind of action is being used. This results in the bullet resisting the building pressure, which then takes the path of least resistance, pushing the brass forward, instead of the bullet. Once the brass has filled the chamber, the pressure can do nothing else except push the bullet down the bore, but the case forming work is already done. I have done most of my fire forming with the cheapest bulk bullets I could find, from one of the major companies, like Remington or Winchester.
 

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Sound like he knows what he's doing...why mess with what works?

Been a few decade, but most real accuracy nuts don't need a whole lot of cases. Their minimal brass working makes for good case life, they don't over heat barrels, and can get by with a surprisingly low number of cases.
 

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I use to have a rifle chambered for the .257 Roberts IMP where I just fired factory ammo and they came out improved cases. Now on some fireforming calibers sometimes it requires annealing so the necks won't split on you.
 

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I like to shoot a factory load first. Then size and trim. Will repeat with cheap bullets.

They seem to hold dimentions purdy well after that with neck-sizing.

On "new" unfired brass, I would full-legnth size and then trim. Hammer them hard (with a safe load), and then neck-size only after that. Trim one more time and you will have some good cases to work with for several firings.

I think my best cases have been fired something like 3 to 7 times. After that, they get tired.

Cheezywan
 

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I form first then fire, after firing the case is 'once fired'



With modified and or improved chambers with a shoulder that is forward of the parent case, I fire form unless I can find a case that has a shoulder forward of the parent case as with the 280 Remington when compared to the .30/06, again the 280 shoulder is forward of the 30/06 shoulder by .051 thousands.



Fire forming, I do it once, I do not use a filler and I am not a fan of reduced loads because of sudden shock, something like meets and or exceeds, I want a powder to go baaaanng, not 'BG',



Not something that can be discussed on the Internet but there have been problems with ringing and or ring cutting in in cases and cylinders, in the real world when someone mentions the phenom I ask the person that asking the question if they are fire formers that use reduced loads with a filler, the answer is always 'yes' I have never has thd problem but I have never used reduced loads and or fillers. then there was an an attempt to save money 95 years ago (+ or - a few) seems the sudden shock of reduced loads for practice in the 1903 was border line between meets and or exceeds.



Again I form first then fire and I do not use reduced loads. it has not been that long ago a shooter/reloader posted pictures of his Weatherby 300 Win Mag that was rendered scrap, the shooter/reloader could not understand why, he said he feed the rifle a steady diet of reduced loads, blowing up a rifle with a steady diet of reduced loads is what I would expect, and it was not the sudden shock of the last round fired, he did find support in the possibility of a double charge.

http://www.z-hat.com/Cylinder.htm

F. Guffey
 

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No need for me to reply, except to tell you to re-read what broom_jm wrote. He nailed it.
 

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Spillard said

"Would appreciate any comments or experiences, especially safety related"

I form first then fire, after firing formed cases they become once fired cases, I have a choice of dies, my favorite is the versatile full length sizer die.

F. Guffey
 
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