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I've tinkered a bit with the Nagant. The only reloadable brass I've found is the Fiocchi brand from Graf's. Trying to make do with 32/20 is an exercise in futility. My revolver won't accept .32/20 brass at all, the rims are too thick, plus, as mentioned above, they are too short. The Nagant really needs the full length brass for reasons described by Ribonstone.
The cartridge would seem to make a good small game gun but the revolvers are not accurate enough for small targets. After some "on again, off again" work with three different Nagant revolvers over several years I've finally concluded the best use for a Nagant is just to show off the most ridiculous handgun ever adopted by any major military power.
I can reload a cap & ball revolver with paper cartridges faster than reloading a Nagant and have much more power and better accuracy as well. I pity the Russian cavalryman who had to trade in a Smith & Wesson top break .44 and carry that silly little POS Nagant. The reloading sequence of: twist the ejector to unlock, withdraw, rotate the ejector into position, punch the fired case out 1/4", flick it the rest of the way out with a fingernail, retract the ejector, rotate the cylinder to the next chamber, repeat seven times, rotate the ejector back under the barrel, push in and twist to lock, then load seven rounds one at a time--geeze! Imagine trying to do that while wearing heavy gloves in a Russian winter, under fire, on horseback! And for all of that they got a pip-squeak cartridge in a revolver with a double action trigger so heavy one could not hope to hit a barn from the inside.:D
 

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I've just measured the length of a couple of fired but not resized cases. The PRVI brass measured 1.518" over all and a Russian case was 1.514". That is for the full gas seal loading, if you don't want to bother with the gas seal just measure your revolver cylinder and cut your brass to that number. Another thing I think worth mentioning, proper Nagant brass is very thin, .223 brass will be thicker and therefore with a bullet inside that thicker brass it may be too fat to chamber or if it does chamber it may pinch the bullet and run up pressures.
Graf's, Midway and probably others have the Fiocchi and PRVI factory loads in stock. Southern Ohio Guns and probably others have the Hot Shot brand ammo and all of them are boxer primed reloadable brass. With proper brass available I can hardly see the point in modifying .223 or fooling around with 32-20, 32 special or .32 mag brass. The Nagant loads are often even cheaper than some of the stuff people substitute.
Proper dies are another matter, the Lee die set as mentioned is designed for 32/20 brass. I've found they work more or less OK with Nagant brass but you will need a Nagant shell holder. The Nagant has a very small and thin rim, it doesn't provide much grip even in a proper shell holder and the .32/20 shell holder is so oversize it doesn't catch the rim at all. I found an RCBS special order Nagant shell holder at Midway, it cost more than the Lee die set but until someone comes out with real 7.62 Nagant dies and shell holders the RCBS is the only option.
 

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When you resize the loaded round to eliminate the buldge you are actually resizing the bullet to a smaller diameter. The Nagant brass for which the gun was designed is very much thinner than the reworked .223 brass. The Nagant chamber will not accept a loaded round with the thicker brass and a .311 bullet inside. That is why the buldge in the case and the need to resize the loaded round. Even after that final resize the bullet will still be pinched very tightly in the case when fired and that can only run up pressures to some unknown extent, not a good idea in a revolver of unknown strength. Then when the bullet does reach the bore it will have been sized down to smaller than bore diameter. Aside from that it just seems like a heck of a lot of work for no good reason when proper factory loaded Nagant ammo in reloadable brass is readily available from several sources. Why take the long way around to the outhouse?
 

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Yes, I like making my own stuff if the end result is as good or better than I can buy, but a hard day's work to produce a result obviously inferior to what I could buy for 20 bucks doesn't sound like fun to me. After all the process of reforming the cases one by one in repeated steps, turning down rims and bases by crude and inexact means and trimming length repeatedly there is yet another step needed to make brass to properly fit the Nagant chamber and barrel throat, they will need to be inside reamed to reduce the neck thickness to Nagant specifications.
If factory loaded ammo comes with .308" bullets then that is what you have to accept when firing factory loaded ammo. One of the great advantages of handloading is that you can use bullets which fit the bore and all commonly available .32 pistol bullets run .311-.312", perfect for the Nagant bore. Who knows what the diameter will be a of bullet first resized buy running the loaded ammo back into the full length size die and then fired through the extra thick case mouth jammed tight in the Nagant barrel throat? And who knows what the pressure will be?
That seems like a heck of a lot of work to end up with something of questionable safety and efficiency when factory loaded Nagant ammo is one of the least expensive rounds you can buy and you then have proper brass which you can reload with readily available bullets.
Maybe it's just the inherent weirdness's of the Nagant revolver which causes people to get all weird in reloading for it.:D
 

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You're right, I went a bit overboard in saying "one of the least expensive" but Graffs, Midway and Cabelas all have Nagant factory loads at about $25.00 for 50 rounds which is certainly reasonable in today's market. It's just a pet peeve of mine that so many people seem eager to use the wrong ammo in these little revolvers. Many years ago it was necessary to improvise when the only ammo available was the berdan primed Russian stuff but ever since the guns themselves have become common the boxer primed ammo has been as well. You may not find it at Walmart but you probably won't find .32 S&W Long there either. The only snag in reloading Nagant brass is that the tiny rim is easily pulled off, leaving a case stuck in the size die, so be sure to lubricate cases well and if using the Lee dies you do have to modify the bullet seating stem to seat a bullet below the case mouth and obtain a proper shell holder from RCBS.
After a bit of modification to the sights the Nagant revolvers make an OK small game gun, considerably lighter to carry than a Ruger Single Six and at about 1/4 the price.
 
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