Brass Breakdown

The Source of Successful Reloading

Brass, Casings, Shells - Whats the Deal?

image-content-1 i

acfDescriptionInfo
Description
acfImageLarge
Image large
acfImageLargeRetina
Image large retina
acfImageMedium
Image medium
acfImageMediumRetina
Image medium retina
acfImageSmall
Image small
acfImageSmallRetina
Image small retina
acfImageXLarge
Image extra large
acfImageXLargeRetina
Image extra large retina
acfSubtitle
Subtitle
acfTitle
Title
acfAlignment
Text alignment
Full Bleed Image

The reloading process starts the moment the warm casing hits the ground. Whether you call them casings, shells, or brass, one thing is certain; if you want to reload, you’ll need as many as you can get your hands on.

Casings come in all shapes, sizes, and materials. If you are out on the range shooting different calibers and plan on reloading those different calibers we recommend sorting your brass before it goes to your press. If you sort it before depriming and prep you won’t have to switch out your dies over and over for each different caliber. To make it easier, you can even get a Brass Catcher for your rifle. Whether you sort before or after cleaning your casings is up to you. If you’re shooting and reloading large quantities of shells you might want to sort them into separate bags right on the range. Staying organized can help reloading stay seamless and consistent.

Rimfire vs.Centerfire

image-content-1 i

acfDescriptionInfo
Description
acfImageLarge
Image large
acfImageLargeRetina
Image large retina
acfImageMedium
Image medium
acfImageMediumRetina
Image medium retina
acfImageSmall
Image small
acfImageSmallRetina
Image small retina
acfImageXLarge
Image extra large
acfImageXLargeRetina
Image extra large retina
acfSubtitle
Subtitle
acfTitle
Title
acfAlignment
Text alignment
Full Bleed Image

There are two types of shells; rimfire and centerfire. Rimfire shells do not have a primer and the firing pin can hit anywhere on the shell to ignite the powder inside. These are usually smaller bullets like .22 and .17 caliber. These calibers are great because they are cheap and have little recoil, however, they aren’t re-loadable; so you’ll have to make sure these little guys don’t end up taking up space in your brass bag.
For reloading, you’ll want to focus on purchasing or collecting spent centerfire cartridges. Centerfire shells have a primer in the center of the base of the shell; this is where the firing pin hits each time to ignite the powder and send some lead downrange. There are two types of centerfire cartridges; Boxer and Berdan, named for the men who invented them.

Boxer and Berdan

image-content-1 i

acfDescriptionInfo
Description
acfImageLarge
Image large
acfImageLargeRetina
Image large retina
acfImageMedium
Image medium
acfImageMediumRetina
Image medium retina
acfImageSmall
Image small
acfImageSmallRetina
Image small retina
acfImageXLarge
Image extra large
acfImageXLargeRetina
Image extra large retina
acfSubtitle
Subtitle
acfTitle
Title
acfAlignment
Text alignment
Full Bleed Image

The Boxer shell contains a single “flash hole” between the primer and an anvil. When the firing pin hits the primer, there is a single small space between the cup and anvil in which the ignition of the powder occurs. The anvil in this shell is part of the primer, so it is removed when reloading and replaced with a new one.

The Berdan, however, has two flash holes for an ignition to take place. In a Boxer cartridge, the anvil is part of the case, not the primer. Since the Boxer has the anvil attached to the actual shell it can wear after many uses.

Ultimately, the Boxer cartridge is the better choice for those looking to reload. You don’t have to worry about your anvil wearing down because you replace it each time with a new primer; plus, the Boxer shell is far more common than the Berdan in the United States, making it more accessible.

 

image-content-1 i

acfDescriptionInfo
Description
acfImageLarge
Image large
acfImageLargeRetina
Image large retina
acfImageMedium
Image medium
acfImageMediumRetina
Image medium retina
acfImageSmall
Image small
acfImageSmallRetina
Image small retina
acfImageXLarge
Image extra large
acfImageXLargeRetina
Image extra large retina
acfSubtitle
Subtitle
acfTitle
Title
acfAlignment
Text alignment
Full Bleed Image

There’s plenty of equipment you can get to keep your brass organized and ready to reload. Frankford has an array of reloading trays, like the Universal Reloading Tray, to keep your brass nice and neat before you start reloading.

Module "title-subtitle-description" i

Module Data Source
Content Asset
acfTitle
Module title
acfSubtitle
Module subtitle
acfDescriptionInfo
Module text
acfCssClasses
Custom classes to handle module
acfContentMarginTop
Overrides default margin top. Value must be specified in pixels, without px word, only numbers eg. "30"
acfContentMarginBottom
Overrides default margin bottom. Value must be specified in pixels, without px word, only numbers eg. "30"