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All the loading data that I have for 223 it says that the case length should be 1.760'' however all the brass that I was given is between 1.7500'' to 1.7560''. Is this okay to use? If I trim my brass to 1.750" would that still be safe to use as my reload or is all my brass trash? Thanks.
 

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Ribzo, your brass is fine as-is. The maximum case length for .223 is 1.760". At that point you must trim or should have already trimmed. Your trim-to length is 1.750" (which is what you'll set your trimmer to) so your brass is ready to go. There is no need to trim the ones that are 1.756. They're perfect.. Which reloading manuals are you using?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Ribzo, your brass is fine as-is. The maximum case length for .223 is 1.760". At that point you must trim or should have already trimmed. Your trim-to length is 1.750" (which is what you'll set your trimmer to) so your brass is ready to go. There is no need to trim the ones that are 1.756. They're perfect.. Which reloading manuals are you using?
I'm using reloading data from Sierra for 223 Bolt. I forgot to add that I'm reloading for my Remington 700. And should I trim all my cases to 1.750 or am I miss understanding you? Just want to know what length I should sent my case trimmer to.
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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The 1.760" is the max length not to exceed. As soon as case length goes past it, it is time to trim back to the 1.750" to stay within SAAMI. As Stretch says - your present cases are fine to load and shoot. If you intend to roll crimp the case to the cannular ring on the bullet, then all cases should be of uniform length. With the box magazine of your M700 and the light recoil of the .223 Rem, you really don't need to crimp.
 

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The .223 like most rifle cartridges has a Case Length of Maximum minus a tolerance, in this case; 1.760" (+0.0"/-.020").
this is illustrated in the following 'SAAMI verified' Ammoguide Interactive Case Drawing:


so your cases may vary in length from 1.760" Maximum down to 1.740" but for Consistent accuracy and crimping (if used) you may wish to use a tighter length tolerance for your Reloads.

Chev. William
 

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Most reloading manuals will list maximum length. Many will list a trim length, which is usually .010" less than maximum.
As mentioned anywhere in between those two numbers makes you golden. If using a roll crimp uniform case length is necessary. Taper crimp is more forgiving. But as also mentioned I haven't found an advantage in crimping the .223.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you all. This is some great information thanks. I also would like to add that this is the best forum I've used. I used another one asking the same question and they all told me to toss the brass and go out and buy new brass and different equipment.
 

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Hmmm. Sounds like they were just being sarcastic and disrespectful.
 

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OP-

Your brass is just fine. The specs of maximum 1.760 is just to make sure that the rounds will fit into a magazine. If you are using a single shot, hand feed onto the ramp bolt gun, you can use longer and you can use shorter. Just make sure that you don't mix and match the longers and shorters.
 

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As long as you don't need or want to crimp them, there's no reason you can't mix and match longer and shorter, just make sure they're all within SAAMI max length and you're good to go. If you're crimping them then you'll have some problems with some over crimping and some that won't take a crimp, other wise it's of no issue.

SMOA
 

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My manuals show a trim to length of 1.75. If they vary from that I'd trim all of them to 1.75 for consistent reloading. I usually do that with brass when I get a batch of used. I measure them at random, take the shortest and trim all to that length.
Your fine with that brass
 

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Just to clarify-- It is VERY important to NOT use brass that is too long. Using .223 as an example. The max case length is 1.760. The CHAMBER length is 1.760 + up to .010 longer than that. IF you try to shoot cases longer than 1.760, you risk the gun and body parts should the chamber be dead on.

Many companies resharpen reamers on the very front of the neck and shoulder. Those edges take 99% of the wear. If the neck takes .005 to clean up but the shoulder only takes .002, the chambers cut with the new reamer are still within spec but .003 short. It's VERY common to see. That's why chamber cast are SO important.
 

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I used another one asking the same question and they all told me to toss the brass and go out and buy new brass and different equipment.
You're listening to someone with excess inventory of new .223 brass.

I replaced a Lee trimmer that trimmed cases to 1.740, after trimming at least a 1000 cases before I bothered to measure one. :eek: It took ages to wear that batch out. They worked just fine the whole tome.

Brass that's too long can, and will, sooner or later, be a problem. The worst brass is stuff like .30-30 and .35 Remington that needs a crimp. The longer brass will cause the neck to bulge or collapse when crimped before it becomes an actual hazard. Brass for my .357M/.44M loads that need a good heavy crimp when using lots of W296 needs to be uniform or neck tension is all over the place, and so is accuracy. Many semi autos will not seat over length brass.

I convert pickup brass to other cartridge versions, and the switch often produces brass slightly short by as much as 0.010, or even more. Never a problem, and most of the time it never needs trimming before necks split or primer pockets give out.

If you still feel the need to pitch the short .223 brass, many handloaders will be glad to assist with disposal. ;)
 

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This winter I pulled my Sako Vixen 223 out of the closet after a 25 year hiatus. I picked up some cheap ammo and was thoroughly disappointed by the results, but assumed reloading these cases would improve things. This rifle used to be amazing for plinking charcoal briquettes at 200yds, but the best I could get now was 2-3" groups at 100yds. I tried different powders, neck sizing only, deburring flash holes. different primers and even match grade bullets. I still couldn't break the 2-3" groups. These last couple weeks I've paid more attention to case length and documented everything meticulously. The cheap cases were mostly running from 1.741 to 1.746". I was seating my bullets for a consistent OAL and had assumed the slightly shorter cases wouldn't really affect things that much since I'm loading singles and not crimping. When I sorted my cases by length I was able to find some that were longer. I trimmed batches for consistent lengths, loaded them, and this weekend got a pleasant surprise. Cases at 1.747 gave me the 10-shot groups of 3" with some landing well outside that. Cases trimmed at 1.749 closed it up to 2" or so. Cases trimmed to 1.751 were consistently giving 1" groups. I even alternated shots of the different case lengths at their respective targets to prove to myself that the case length was making the difference and not barrel temps or wind.

I will continue to experiment with case lengths and then work to find the best powder charge and bullet for my rifle. It appears my rifle wants a longer case neck to hold the case in the chamber and seal the chamber more consistently. In a nuthell, I'm also thinking I have several hundred of these shorter/cheaper cases to donate to someone who's just spitting pills downrange from an autoloader and worried less about accuracy. Thankfully I have another 1000 or so cases that I picked up at a going out of business sale that my calipers say are 1.750+". There is apparently no end to the experimenting in this hobby.
 

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Would suggest a safe queen for 25 years may also need a bit of tweaking in the bbl/stock contact and bedding screw checking.
 
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Would suggest a safe queen for 25 years may also need a bit of tweaking in the bbl/stock contact and bedding screw checking.
Exactly! I'm going through rifles right now that haven't been shot in 30 years. Some went very sour!!
 

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Excellent call. When I yanked the rifle out of hibernation and saw the performance I hit up this forum, checked the clearance, pulled the bbl from the stock, and ended up moving a factory shim from the rear mount to the front. The barrel is now solidly mounted and the clearance is uniform. I'm not sure whether the stock changed or the shims were moved decades ago. I still had the accuracy issue after moving the shim but you absolutely called it, this would have been another fly in the ointment.

This is why I like this forum. I'm no expert and it gives me a huge knowledge base to draw from.
 

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BabaNapper-- I'm not sure what shims you're talking about in a Sako. Maybe something somebody did years ago. With that flat action its easy to shim behind the recoil lug and around the rear tang screw equally. That will relieve the barrel channel of hard contact. Usually shims are use to FIND a problem and then epoxy REPAIRS it.
 
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I recently had a similar question, I had a bunch of good brass that was too short (or so I thought).
Many of the 223 cases were in the 1.720-1.735 range and I was about to convert them to 300 BLK.

Instead, I loaded up a bunch with 40 grain bullets and took it to my range where they fired just fine with no issues. Accuracy wasn't bad either. I have since swabbed their necks with brass-black and segregated them into a single lot for loading with lighter projectiles.

i was concerned that a carbon ring might form in the chamber like seen with shooting 38's in a 357 cylinder but with a small quantity that didn't seem to be the case. I will continue monitoring it when I do shoot these up.

If they stretch back to normal specs, that's fine too.

eta... So far I haven't seen any problems with using brass-black as a semi-permanent brass marking method either... although up until this batch I've been doing it only with 38 spl light loads for a 1920's S&W... anyone else try this?
 

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The case length should be measured after sizing. Cases can grow a bit when sized.

Chambers on rifles can vary a bit. Some may need tweeking of the case length, but that is rare.
 
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