Jump to content
Brian Enos's Forums... Maku mozo!

Anyone experiment with trimming .223/5.56 before resizing?


Recommended Posts

I have a 650 that I use for .45acp. For years I thought about reloading .223/5.56 but didn't have any need to... and still don't. However, the recent M855 scare prompted me to purchase a spare tool head for my 650 and a set of Dillon dies... just incase.

Reading about reloading rifle ammo I have discovered people resize first, then trim, then load. Ugh! That is depressing.

All my brass is mine, once fired, Federal (Lake City).... NO range brass or different brands.

Have people experimented with trimming first?

I'm thinking about trying:

1. Trim

2. Resize

3. Measure

4. If all is well then continue with reloading.

If resizing lengthens the cases, then I am thinking trying:

1. Trim more than one would normally

2. Resize (if after many samples I discover they are all proper lengths)....

3. Continue reloading process as one would with pistol cases

This is for my AR. All I do with it is plink etc. I don't shoot long distances requring great accuracy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dillon trim die is a full length size die with a tight neck. All you need after it is to open up the neck. I use a neck expanding mandrel from 21st century shooting. Measured a lot and never seen the mandrel lengthen a case like a traditional expander ball will sometimes do.

decap

trim/size

neck expand

there you go, single pass, fully prepped(except obviously the swage of the primer pocket if its needed).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a very good friend that trims his first. He trims slightly less than normal trim-to length, and then goes to town with his XL1050. The stretch on resizing is apparently repeatable enough.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Trimming before sizing sounds like a woman buying new clothes before she looses weight.

Get the case to the size you want and trim to the length. Unless you are converting brass for a different use two trims is just more work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've done it, because I load on a 550 so life complicated enough already. Assuming you are using the same type of brass, you can do it, but you won't end up with the most precise brass length. It fine most ammo.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Trimming before resizing is doable. Since you have brass that is yours, it should be predictable and repeatable. You may run into problems if all of the brass was not shot throught the same chamber. If everything was run throught the same chamber then you should be good. These reloads may not produce "match" ammo but should be good for plinking and practice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have 2 tool heads for my .223 loads. One for my resizing die, and the other for loading. I don't shoot a lot during deer season, so I spend my evenings Sun-Thurs prepping .223/.556 brass. I have numerous different head stamps with most being FC, or LC brass I get from a LE friend by the 5gal bucket full. I always tumble, separate head stamps, & visually inspect for major defects first. Once I have gone through about 10gal, I start resizing, trimming, Swage if needed, and tumble again to remove sizing lube. Then they are stored in Sterlite plastic shoe boxes labeled with cal/head stamp/ Ready to Load. I have about 30k prepped, and ready to load right now. When I load, I seat a primer, charge the case, seat the bullet, and apply a very, very light crimp with the Lee FCD. I have tried loading with, and without a crimp, and haven't noticed any difference in accuracy out of my ARs so I crimp since I have the die.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Of course you can.... Just trim to minimum length... Your rifle won't blow up like a grenade and you will be within specs even after resizing. No big deal at all. Often, when I am forming cases from one caliber to another.. (.22 hornet to .17 hornet or .204 Ruger to .17 Remington) I trim the formed case a little short before fireforming so that after fireforming the cases will be at the correct length.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have people experimented with trimming first?

I'm thinking about trying:

1. Trim

2. Resize

3. Measure

4. If all is well then continue with reloading.

If resizing lengthens the cases, then I am thinking trying:

1. Trim more than one would normally

2. Resize (if after many samples I discover they are all proper lengths)....

3. Continue reloading process as one would with pistol cases

This is for my AR. All I do with it is plink etc. I don't shoot long distances requring great accuracy.

As we know resizing can make the case longer, it may or may not but it can. The amount is also an unknown.

If you are already going to do #3 in your first list (measure after trim and size) why not trim after sizing? Swap #2 and #1, size then trim, then you know they are all the same, not guessing that they all should be close or inside trim length but trimmed to the same length after sizing.

For your second list, if the cases are already sized, and your guess was wrong and you had to trim more off, there would be no need to size again before loading as you already sized them correctly.

In any case, you would eliminate the need for your second list by swapping 1&2, on the first list.

What am I missing? Seems like to walk everyone always makes a first step. Size then trim then maybe size again doesn't seem like the quickest way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

IT all depends on how consistent you want your ammo to be....

If you don't care, trim it back until u never get one that is too long after sizing.

If you do care, size-trim-size. I have one head setup with a sizing die, Dillon trimmer, sizing die.

Just pull the handle and evacuate the brass trimmings.

Don't forget to clean the dies to get out all the crap that accumulates.

The second size helps makes the brass have a more consistent headspace since every brass pc doesn't act the same.

You will also need to chamfer at least the mouth ID.

There is no quick way to make really good rifle ammo.

Nick

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...