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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently traded my 454 Casull revolver in on a 460 S&W Mag revolver. I have been reloading the 454 for years using Winchester brass. Bulk Winchester brass was not available for the 460, so I purchased Starline brass and loaded up ten test rounds. This is the first time I have used Starline brass and I noticed some things I have never seen before in my 30 years of reloading. I'm not sure if it is a Starline issue, a 460 issue, or both. Let me explain, and then tell me what you think.
When I received my 100 cases of Starline 460 brasss, they looked great and the case length was consistantly 1.795 (Max Length is 1.800 and trim length is 1.790). So far, so good. I decided to run the brass through the (Lee) resizer die before loading them. After I did this, all the lengths increased to 1.805. This seemed like a lot "growth", but I trimmed them all back to 1.795 and loaded them up with no problems. I am using WLR primers, Hornady 240 gr. XTP/MAG bullets, and 45.0 gr. of H110 powder (a light and fun load for this caliber). I shot these ten rounds this morning, and after doing so, I measured them again as I read somewhere that 460 cases tend to stretch some. The fired cases measured 1.784 - they Shrunk below trim length! I ran these through the resizer die, and now they are back up to 1.795.
My question is: Is this stretching and shrinking normal for this brand and or caliber of brass? If so, it does not seem like it could last for many reloads. What is your experience with Starline / 460 S&W Mag brass?
Thanks for your replies.

Regards, Chappy
 

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I think I'd set my die so it doesn't work the entire length of the brass, just neck size so to speak, then you'd be working the brass less. I have a Hornady 460 die set and Starline brass, but haven't got the rifle for it yet ::), so I can't offer any reloading info specific to the 460, but do load for .405 Win, .444, 45-70, 45 Colt and 500 S&W, that's how I set my dies for them. ;)

Tim
 

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I doubt that it's a Starline issue. I have had great success with starline. What is happening is the cases are blowing out to camber diameter and shortening instead of stretching. The brass has to go some where. Size it back down ad it lengthens back to where you started. Is this a problem with short case life? Time will tell. Just keep track of how many loadings you get before they fail and decide for yourself.
 

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This is not a Starline brass problem. To this date, I have NEVER trimmed a straight walled cartridge case. You should never need to. I also have NEVER resized a new case before loading it. The most a new case will get from me is chamfering of the neck to make seating a bullet easier. If you resize a case so the brass is squeezed tighter, the case will lengthen and when fired, the case will shorten; this is normal.

If you are loading the 460 S&W to the pressures for which it was designed (up around 60,000 psi), case life might not be all that great (3 to 5 reloadings). This is the first straight walled cartridge I loaded for in which I've experienced incipient case head separations. If your loads are conservative, case life should be as good as with any other straight walled cartridge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the replies. They seem to make sense and say that I do not have something too unusual going on.
I think I have a couple things happening. First, with these new and different cases, I am paying more attention to what they are doing than I normally do. And second, these longer cases might be showing more change than the shorter ones I was using before. I like the idea of particially resizing the cases. Tonight, I raised the die up so that it barely pushes out the primer. This left the bottom of the cases untouched, but they still chamber in my revolver. Often, I do not resize new brass, but did so this time to make sure the case would have a tight grip on the bullet. I would throw away my 454 Casull cases after 12 high power loads. I would often have to trim them once or twice during their life. I hope to get 10 loads out of these 460 cases if I stay away from max loads - which I am happy to do, at least for awhile.
Tim: What kind of 460 rifle are you getting? That sounds pretty interesting.

Regards, Chappy
 

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I'm waiting for Fred at 4D Reamer Rentals to get a 460 reamer so I can ream an H&R 45 Colt Carbine barrel. I was gonna just do it to Casull, but after talking with my gunsmith, decided to just go with the 460 and probably load it somewhere between the Casull and 460 using either the 275gr XPB or the 250gr and 300gr Hornady SST ML bullets. ;)

Tim
 
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