Enfield-Rifles.com Homepage
Forum Home Forum Home > Reloading > Reloading .303 British
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - Annealing
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Annealing

 Post Reply Post Reply Page  12>
Author
Message
Honkytonk View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: December 30 2017
Location: Brandon Mb
Status: Offline
Points: 2772
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Honkytonk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Annealing
    Posted: January 08 2020 at 11:16am
I haven't read alot about annealing on the site. I used to do it on .303 brass, but stopped when I went to Privi brass. Needed? Not? Thanks.
Back to Top
Sponsored Links


Back to Top
britrifles View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: February 03 2018
Location: USA
Status: Offline
Points: 1612
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 08 2020 at 12:12pm
I've not done it on .303 cases.  I have on .30-06 when I was having problems with neck cracking.  You must be very careful not to overheat the brass, particularly the case head, you can significantly weaken it to the point of being dangerous. 
 
I've rarely had case neck splits on .303 military brass, even after 40+ reloads using the Lee collet die.  I continue to reload until I see the white line forming circumferentially around the case about 1/2 inch above the head in the web; that's the end of life as a head separation is forming.
Back to Top
Shamu View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Logo Designer / Donating Member

Joined: April 25 2007
Location: MD, USA.
Status: Offline
Points: 11784
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 08 2020 at 12:45pm
I do it every 3 rd load.
I even made up a little "machine" to make it simple.
I use something called "Tempilaq", available from welding supply stores.

Its a temperature sensitive crayon or paint that you pick a temperature & put a little dab or smear on before heating. When it reaches the right temp it changes color & you quit heating it. I use 450°F (brown) for the shoulder or 600°F (orange) for the neck
You can quench in cold water but its not essential.
The "holder/heat shield" is made from a 14mm deep socket washers & fender washers & a long bolt. Its perfect for .303 cases.
The s/s bowl is half filled with water & used to cool the brass because I tend to do big batches & I don't want hot necks resting against bases that shouldn't heat.
I set the flame as low as I can get it & the power screwdriver spins at just the right speed, you could use a cordless drill slowly though. Depending on how the first couple indicate it takes 5~7seconds a case to hit temperature. I run 4~5 cases & average the time for the rest of the batch. With the torch angled like this I introduce the case from behind the flame so it plays on just the neck & shoulder, if I mess up it just kisses the socket & the "heat sink fins" disperse it quite quickly.



Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
Back to Top
britrifles View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: February 03 2018
Location: USA
Status: Offline
Points: 1612
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 08 2020 at 2:51pm
Sham,
 
Supposedly, this will restore consistency in neck tension and improve accuracy; but I'm not yet convinced.  Have you had any issues with .303 brass if you don't anneal?  How did you arrive at annealing every 3 reload?
 
I really notice how much this softens the neck, you can tell when you size the case and when you seat the bullet.  I've not noticed any difference in accuracy (in my M1 rifle which I've annealed cases for).    
 
 
Back to Top
Honkytonk View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: December 30 2017
Location: Brandon Mb
Status: Offline
Points: 2772
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Honkytonk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 08 2020 at 2:52pm
Shamu. That's a nice rig. Maybe another summer project! If you can change the molecular structure of copper without burning off the tougher zinc, I can only think this heat treating of brass is a good thing.
Back to Top
Pukka Bundook View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: February 02 2015
Location: Canada
Status: Offline
Points: 1214
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pukka Bundook Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 08 2020 at 2:59pm
I started getting the odd case neck cracking on my old Norma Swedish Mauser  brass, so just annealed that, pretty much a flintstone version of Shamu's idea, ( I turn a hand-drill, held upright in a vise.
 
 
I pick the brass out with a gloved hand and dump it in water.
I also just did a bunch of Sellior & Bellot  7,62 x54R brass.
Most say it's awful brass, but once it's had the neck annealed it's beautiful stuff and very nicely made.
 
Back to Top
Shamu View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Logo Designer / Donating Member

Joined: April 25 2007
Location: MD, USA.
Status: Offline
Points: 11784
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 09 2020 at 7:10am
I used to get 3~5 loads with both HXP & PPU brass, 3~4 at best with RemChester.
Now I'm on my 7th reload with the current lot of PPU  brass.

The biggest controversy with annealing seems to be the correct temperature & how to read it!
If you look at the image of the socket & annealed case you can easily see the color change to the brass indicating it has actually annealed, but the temps I use are quite a bit lower than many use. Its one of those good things where enough is enough & too much is a bad thing IMO.
I do notice that if I anneal in dim lighting I can actually see the color of the brass change, I also notice a chance in the flame color, it goes from the usual "electric blue" to a flash of orange. That seems to mesh well with the 450~600 temp range. That's way way less than the "Dull cherry red" I hear mentioned a lot.
IMO its excessive as the metal changes at a lower point anyway! I think the lower temps also help with not "burning off" any of the the zinc which has a much lower temperature tolerance.

Another point of contention is the water quench. Wih iron or steel you must quench to get annealing, but brass has a different internal structure & so it isn't needed for realigning the structure. I only quench to prevent heat transfer in the collector bowl between cold bases & hot necks & shoulders. Doing a case every 5 seconds it does get to be quite a heat soak in there after a while.

I don't crimp, as I mentioned in the other thread, but I have "spun down" the expander ball with some 3200 abrasive to polish & tighten the neck so I retain a firm bullet pull. I do notice a difference in seating pressure but its not massive.

The 3 reload schedule was from several other sources as its to relieve work hardening & that takes a while to happen.


Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
Back to Top
britrifles View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: February 03 2018
Location: USA
Status: Offline
Points: 1612
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 09 2020 at 12:15pm
If I was going to anneal on a routine basis, I would do it pretty much exactly as Sham has described.  I have annealed cases by holding the case at the head and turning it in the flame until I just see a slight colour change (do this in low light conditions); before the case head gets too hot to hold, then set it down.  It's worked OK  for me, but using Tempilaq is much more precise.  And as Sham said, you can easily get too much heat into the case and permanently alter the brass structure.  
 
I'm not sure why I've been able to get so many reloads without neck cracking.  I wonder if part of the reason is using a collet die.  With a F/L die, the neck is first squashed down to a smaller diameter, and then expanded with the decapping rod.  The collet die squeezes the neck on a mandrel so it's got to be working the brass less. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Back to Top
Shamu View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Logo Designer / Donating Member

Joined: April 25 2007
Location: MD, USA.
Status: Offline
Points: 11784
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 09 2020 at 1:45pm
There's the answer instead of over squeezing & then expanding the collet just squeezes once.
Annealing isn't really about case necks though but the shoulder area. That tends to be blown out on firing & set back on resizing so again its a lot of metal working & the shoulder tends to "go" first.
Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
Back to Top
britrifles View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: February 03 2018
Location: USA
Status: Offline
Points: 1612
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 09 2020 at 3:44pm
Aughhh, yes, if your F/L sizing, then it makes sense.  Do you typically F/L size your .303 brass?
Back to Top
Shamu View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Logo Designer / Donating Member

Joined: April 25 2007
Location: MD, USA.
Status: Offline
Points: 11784
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 10 2020 at 8:10am
No, I do a "partial full length resize" where a F/L die is used but backed off to match the chamber by testing with a "smudged" case.



Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
Back to Top
Pukka Bundook View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: February 02 2015
Location: Canada
Status: Offline
Points: 1214
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Pukka Bundook Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 10 2020 at 2:45pm
Sham,
 
With iron or steel you do not quench for annealing, but cool as slowly as possible.
 
One of the best ways is to drop the metal into hot ashes and leave until cold. 
To harden the steel, like when we make springs, we often drop them in water red hot, then draw them back or they will snap like carrots. 
I have heard in the last few years, that brass does not need a water quench , but was "brought up" believing that it did.
As it works for me and always has, I will continue to do so.
My Mag-Tech brass for the Martini and Snider is at very least 12 years old, and gets annealed every few reloads.
Back to Top
Shamu View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Logo Designer / Donating Member

Joined: April 25 2007
Location: MD, USA.
Status: Offline
Points: 11784
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 10 2020 at 2:52pm
AhHa! I knew it was something like that. You won't harm brass by quenching its just not needed for the annealing process. Like you I'll keep doing it as I don't want my bases & rims slow cooking in a 450° oven.
Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
Back to Top
Honkytonk View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: December 30 2017
Location: Brandon Mb
Status: Offline
Points: 2772
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Honkytonk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 10 2020 at 3:12pm
When I did anneal (and will do again next round) I would wear a leather glove on one hand, hold the propane torch (small hand held) with the other. I had a bowl of water and a she!! holder ready. I would then apply heat to the area from the neck to just below the shoulder, rotating slow and watch for a colour change. I would then dunk the cartridge (only the parts that had seen direct heat) in Luke warm water, then set in the holder neck down... repeat as necessary. They dry pretty quick from the latent heat and being neck down, but I would wait until the next day before continuing the reload process. I kind of like the annealed look on a cartridge... just like I like the look of heat blued exhaust pipes on my motorcycle!
Back to Top
britrifles View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: February 03 2018
Location: USA
Status: Offline
Points: 1612
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 10 2020 at 3:43pm
 When annealing brass cases, the benefit of dropping in water is to stop any further heat transfer to the case head and web where you do not want the brass to soften.  “Quenching” does nothing to the grain structure of brass like it does with steel. 
Back to Top
shiloh View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: January 08 2019
Location: Ontario
Status: Online
Points: 447
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote shiloh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 11 2020 at 12:29am
I was taught to stand a few in a pan of water which acts as a heat sink, cherry the shoulder up let cool to touch remove to dry and repeat.
I also use a small propain tourch.
Always works for me.
shoot em if you got em
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply Page  12>
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 12.01
Copyright ©2001-2018 Web Wiz Ltd.