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W-W Brass

06 Jun 2019
@ 09:31 am (GMT)

Paul Leverman

Took a brand new SPS out today to fireform some brass. Brand new, sized and prepped Winchester 300 WM cases. Loaded with 26gr. of TrailBoss and a 190gr Sierra HPBT seated into the lands.

Fourth round through and got an ejector mark on the case head. Say what?? With TrailBoss? Marked the case for reference and carried on with the rest. Fired off fifteen rounds and hardly noticeable copper fouling. Cleaned it anyway and finished off the rest, for a total of twenty-one. And still no copper to speak of.

Back home on the bench, all the cases looked good. When I went to seat the primer in the suspect case, I probably could have pushed in with my fingers. So, I have to assume that one out of the batch was softer brass than the rest. Weird, but it shows you have to pay attention.

Changed the trigger on the SPS and set it at 1.5#. What a dream to shoot.


07 Jun 2019
@ 10:08 am (GMT)

Luke Lahdenranta

Re: W-W Brass
I recently had some winchester super x (grey box) 243 factory loads split some necks, I think I had to toss 3 or 4 out of that box.

I recently read somewhere on the Internet (so you know it must be true) that winchester closed or sold their brass factory and no longer make their own brass. That could explain the variable quality on their brass now.

09 Jun 2019
@ 01:59 am (GMT)

Paul Leverman

Re: W-W Brass
It may have been a bad run at the factory. In the bag of fifty, seven had forming creases in the neck. Bad enough to be culled and used for dummies. In a second bag that I just bought (different lot #), there was only one cull and only because it showed a thin spot on the inner and outer surface of the neck. I'm thinking I will have to pay especially close attention to the suspect lot, as they may develop potential issues earlier than normal.

The second lot was reformed to Norma mag with no issues in the necks or shoulders and felt typical of the harder W-W brass.
14 Jun 2019
@ 01:07 am (GMT)

Shawn Bevins

Re: W-W Brass
I have seen the newer Winchester brass being of poor quality. I do believe there was a change in brass composition. I believe Nathan mentioned in a post a while ago that some of the brass manufacturers were selling brass that was possibly questionable during the "lean years".

I swapped a bag of Winchester old brass for Winchester new brass (257 Roberts) a while ago and wish I hadn't. Out of 50 cases I believe 14 were probably not up to the usual QC standards. I found a large spread in case weights, very rough necks and 3 with very poor primer holes. These should not have made it to the package.

FYI, my old Winchester brass for the 257 R is quite consistent..

14 Jun 2019
@ 04:02 pm (GMT)

Paul Leverman

Re: W-W Brass
Had a range day yesterday. So far the brass has held up to normal standards, at a mid-range load. No marks, excessive stretching, or loose pockets. Maybe all is good. Same brass will be loaded with the next incremental increases, getting real close to book max. Wait and see, I guess.
04 Jul 2019
@ 10:57 pm (GMT)

Paul Leverman

Re: W-W Brass
Well, that didn't work. Loaded eighteen rounds in half grain increments, highest was 1.5gr under book max. Typical groups for load development, from "nope" to "all right". Got home and resized them and when it came time to reprime, no resistance whatsoever in seating the primer. Calipers show an increase in pocket diameter, but it it hard to get a good reading. Contacted Winchester, will have to wait and see what they say.
05 Jul 2019
@ 07:24 am (GMT)

Bryan Webster

Re: W-W Brass
Hello Paul. I stopped using Winchester brass last year in the spring or thereabouts because of what was being found in this article.
For all of my .308 loads I now use Lapua brass (normal primer size, not the small one. Have had zero issues and get a lot of use from each box. I bought mine in bulk when the prices were good and it worked out well.

For my 7mm Remington magnum I have been using Hornady brass and have had no problems using it...even with the hotter loads I worked up to in settling on a hunting load for a new barrel. I also bought a fairly large number of brass to start with thinking the pricing on it would not stay low as it was.

I have also used Nosler brass in some of my grandkids rifles and found them just fine although I never have loaded theirs hot at all.

I do pay an inordinate amount of attention to setting my dies when reloading for hunting.

05 Jul 2019
@ 03:14 pm (GMT)

Paul Leverman

Re: W-W Brass
This lot of WW brass is for a rifle that's not mine. I have brass from just about every manufacturer, in most of the common, and some not so common sizes. I got buckets of brass from a gunsmith friend when he shut down. Conservatively, I am thinking close to 200#. And that's not including handgun brass. I will have to look through it again to see if there is any 300 brass. I know there is lots of 2.5" brass but that doesn't do me any good.

Pretty sure Winchester will just tell me to pound salt, no warranty for used brass, even though from new it was crap. Oh well. It really pisses me off when you find something good, and they go and change it just to save money, and turn it into junk. The way of the future.

If I can't find any good used in my buckets, I'll have to try the Lapua. Won't buy Nosler again, it's just as bad as the Winchester. Lying pr*cks. Nosler tells you it's hand picked and individually inspected. Another pile of crap. If it was true, then why do I have brand new Nosler brass without a primer pocket? Lying pr*cks.

(Good thing this isn't my outside voice.)
16 Jul 2019
@ 10:27 pm (GMT)

Paul Leverman

Re: W-W Brass
Time to eat crow, folks. Mighty tasty when you get it fresh off the roadside.

Winchester has contacted me and at their request, the lot of brass is being returned for a full refund, including the freight costs to send them back.

I am awestruck. This kind of customer service in this day and age........

17 Jul 2019
@ 05:48 am (GMT)

Luis Vazquez

Re: W-W Brass
Every once in a while you get surprised by a company that does care or at least seems to care. I'm glad it worked out.

Best regards

18 Jul 2019
@ 06:23 pm (GMT)

Simon Crowther

Re: W-W Brass
Lee are like that as well. I had problems with the thread on my sizing die and they asked me to send them a photo of the broken parts.

I couldn't believe it, the next thing I knew, only two or three days later, replacement parts arrived on my doorstep all the way from the US and absolutely free of any charges.

Very fast and efficient.
20 Jul 2019
@ 12:51 pm (GMT)

Luis Vazquez

Re: W-W Brass
I actually have some new Winchester brass for my 7mm-08 and 223 Rem, and maybe also for the 7mm Rem Mag. I got these back in 2012 so they should be good but I'll found out eventually.
21 Jul 2019
@ 07:17 am (GMT)

Paul Leverman

Re: W-W Brass
You are probably good to go, Luis. I've used Win brass for years in many calibres and loads, and never had a problem like this. It is more than likely a one-off lot that somehow got messed up. I did purchase some PPU brass as a replacement for the Win brass, and it certainly appears to be a better quality, but I really won't know until it has been fired a couple of times.
21 Jul 2019
@ 12:03 pm (GMT)

Luis Vazquez

Re: W-W Brass
I think so Paul, some of the brass I'm currently using on my 7mm Rem Mag is from that same purchase and no issues so far after 5 firings


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