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Discussion Starter #1
I have a question about neck sizing dies. While deer hunting last season, I had a case stick in the chamber. It was unfired & I could not unload the rifle after the walk. Bolt action Rem. 700, 270 cal.

These rounds were fired at the range, then the brass reloaded the same day, when the temperature was about 80 degree's outside. Hunting day was about 8 degrees outside.

My question is, would such a temperature change cause the brass to stick?

I was using a fast powder in this load. IMR 4895. The gunsmith said the powder was to fast. He discounted temperature change & neck sizing. He basically did not listen to what I had loaded. Contanquerous old man. I did fire off the round before taking to him to remove. I did not want to bring in a loaded rifle to him.
 

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If you used load data for 4895 and followed that data it should be okay.

If the round was stuck and was unfired, it might have been that the neck was too long and was pinched at the throat.

Temperature should not cause a case to stick.
 

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How old is the rifle ? was the lube cleaned off the case ? I have had new rifles with sticky chambers until I cleaned the daylights out of them and also had problems with lube that was not cleaned off the cases . In the future , it would probably be ok to tap the bolt handle with a rubber/leather mallet or fire the cartridge and tap/rap the bolt handle .
 

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Discussion Starter #4
If you used load data for 4895 and followed that data it should be okay.

If the round was stuck and was unfired, it might have been that the neck was too long and was pinched at the throat.

Temperature should not cause a case to stick.

Load data for 4895 was followed & not max. I "did" measure all case lengths w/ calipers, all were ok. Not to say that is not the issue. I was thinking the base of the brass may have caused the stuck case. There was a big temperature change from loading to hunting.

So you are saying, temperature change should have no issue in this case. I am just trying to learn here.

Thanks for the reply
 

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Discussion Starter #5
How old is the rifle ? was the lube cleaned off the case ? I have had new rifles with sticky chambers until I cleaned the daylights out of them and also had problems with lube that was not cleaned off the cases . In the future , it would probably be ok to tap the bolt handle with a rubber/leather mallet or fire the cartridge and tap/rap the bolt handle .
The rifle barrel is a new air gauge installed by Ahlman's in Minnesota. Rem. 700.

I use RCBS spray lube. I do wipe them down, but maybe not good enough or missed a few.

Thanks for your reply.
 

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I have a M70 in 7mm Rem that had a very hard time ejecting the fired case at the beginning of hunting season one year. I polished the chamber and have not had a problem ever since.
 

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Load data for 4895 was followed & not max. I "did" measure all case lengths w/ calipers, all were ok. Not to say that is not the issue. I was thinking the base of the brass may have caused the stuck case. That is possible. There was a big temperature change from loading to hunting.

So you are saying, temperature change should have no issue in this case. Correct. I am just trying to learn here.

Thanks for the reply
It's hard to imagine that the cartridge, or the rifle chamber, could expand/contract enough from a temperature change to cause a case to stick. I suppose it's possible, and I could not rule it out, but it doesn't seem likely. I suspect it was something about that round that simply didn't fit, either the base was not sized quite far enough, or the shoulder was not moved back far enough, or the neck was too long. Those would be the most likely culprits to make a case stick in the chamber.
 

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Case neck might have been a little long, shoulder not bumped back quite far enough (if you neck sized only was the case fired from that rifle or maybe a different one?).

IMR 4895 from what I can see isn't too fast for a 270 and it seems to be one of the go-to powders for .308 Win and .30-06. I like it in .308 as a matter of fact (of course I'm open to suggestions ;) ) Burn rate charts are pretty vague and don't tell how much faster a powder is than another, they're just in order from fastest to slowest and it's not like you loaded the case with Bullseye or something!

I don't think the temperature should have had anything to do with it-brass should contract more than the steel of the receiver in the cold. Since the case was stuck before the round was touched off the problem is obviously an interference between the cartridge and the receiver/chamber.

Is it possible some oil from the previous cleaning had collected in the chamber and gotten sticky between range day and the hunting trip?

Have you tried chambering any of the other cartridges from that reloading session?

Bunch of responses while I was looking at burn rate charts and stuff...

If you neck sized only rather than full length resizing it is possible that the chamber is tight enough to not like that process. Sounds like there's some custom work involved with the rifle and I'm wondering if maybe something is out of spec with it or right on the edge of the tight tolerances.
 

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Not enough temp change to cause much movement.
It takes MANY hundreds of degrees.
Think dull red and liquid nitrogen cold the separate pieces for a clamp to occur with a slight interference fit to start.

We did this for some military work for years.
Heat treat oven for the outside piece, liquid nitrogen tank for the inside.
Bring to temp.
Quickly put hot piece in cradle in vice, cold piece on the other end of cradle, tighten vice.
You had about 60 seconds to get them together.

If you did not have to hammer the bolt closed it was not the temp change.
As others have noted make sure the chamber and ammunition is completely clean.
Use a bronze chamber brush.
It would not take much lubricant to cause a problem on neck sized brass.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the advice. Looks like I did not neck size the brass properly.
There has been custom work on this rifle. Fired brass was from same rifle.
Sounds like I need to read up on neck sizing. How will I know I have bumped back the shoulder enough? I would not be surprised if the chamber is tight also. Thanks again.
 

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A neck sizing die is not designed to bump the shoulder back - it only makes contact with the neck.
A body die or full length sizing die can be adjusted to set the shoulder back. You could use a Hornady headspace gage http://www.midwayusa.com/product/47...-bushing-set-with-comparator?cm_vc=sugv479704

Before I had the gage, I would just chamber sized brass (no primer or bullet), adjusting the die down until the bolt handle closed with little resistance. You will always have a little resistance closing the bolt on a cartridge because of the spring tension of the ejector and extractor.

If you have a super tight custom chamber requiring neck turned brass, that is a whole other issue.
 

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Sometimes, a shoulder just needs a little bumping. That cantankerous old man was cantankerously correct. :)
 

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With the price of hunts going up like a sky rocket, it is wise to use full length sized brass when hunting and check each cartridge in the chamber before leaving the house.
 

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With the price of hunts going up like a sky rocket, it is wise to use full length sized brass when hunting and check each cartridge in the chamber before leaving the house.
That's a good point. Neck sizing only has been used successfully by many bench rest shooters at extreme range and it's easier on the brass but it can have a far steeper learning curve to do it effectively and get a slight improvement in accuracy than full length sizing.

With Sierra HPBT MK's and IMR 4895 and seating the bullets to match factory ammo COL I was able to make some rounds for my son's Ruger Gunsight Scout (16.1" barrel .308 Win) that were nearly minute of angle accuracy. I'm sure that with a bit of tweaking the load and the seating depth I can get it to or maybe even sub-MOA with full length resizing and that's plenty accurate for most hunting applications...
 

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A few thoughts from an old guy who has reloaded thousands of 270 Win for Rem 700.

Not being there and not examining the rifle myself, my thoughts are conjecture. But based on experience.
  • IMR4895 and H4895 are both excellent for 270 Win. The gunsmith is wrong that the powder is too fast. Completely wrong. I cannot express how wrong he was.
  • You clarified that you followed manufacturer's load data, and case length was not excessive. Good. Highly unlikely that has anything to do with your trouble.
  • Nothing wrong with neck sizing brass fire formed in that same rifle. Your assertion, "Sounds like I need to read up on neck sizing" is probably the wrong direction. You just need to learn more about headspace, and check all neck-sized and trimmed brass in your chamber before loading it. If it's too tight, bump the shoulder back as mentioned above. Please note: You didn't say if custom work was done to the rifle before or after you last fired that brass. If you fired the case in the rifle, then had work done on the chamber, the case was NOT fire formed to the new chamber. Once again, it points to head space trouble. After work is done on the chamber you need to full length size all your brass and fire form again.
  • If you have had no other trouble with your loaded cartridges, you checked case length after neck sizing (not before!!!), and always use good quality .277" bullets, it is highly unlikely it was pinched at the throat.
  • Air gauging is just to check consistent bore diameter full length in a rifle barrel, it has nothing to do with your trouble. It does not 'improve' a barrel, it just measures it.
  • If the primer seated snugly and wasn't loose, the base of your case is probably not the trouble. At its SAAMI pressure, a 270 case head will expand with every shot. But the primer will get loose when the case head expands too much. Expanded case head might be the trouble, but not likely.
  • No, temperature wasn't the problem if the cartridge remained stuck when you took the rifle home to warmer temperature. Temperature doesn't explain cartridges stuck in the manner you described. 8 degrees F isn't that cold.
  • Dirt or debris in the chamber might contribute, along with burrs on case mouth. Hard to tell without examination. But if you only neck sized after shooting that case several times (or shooting it even once at full power), bump-shoulder-back is a much much more likely need.
  • You say the gun has been customized but you didn't say what was done. It is always likely the work was done improperly, but the same problem would probably repeat itself regularly. Instead, if this is an isolated incident then it is likely related to that particular cartridge.

There may be other troubles, but it would appear that improperly sized case body is the most likely.

As mentioned by several good members above, your case body length is likely to have stretched a bit from previous loading. Nothing wrong with neck sizing but you still need to check headspace length and bump the shoulder back when required. The case should go all the way in and fall out of the chamber fairly easily, or with just minimal effort. The camming action of a rifle bolt is surprisingly powerful, if the cartridge is longer than the chamber's headspace the camming action will seat the cartridge easily and jam it hard into the chamber, but won't extract it if jammed too tightly.

That is most likely your trouble, along with going to the wrong 'gunsmith'. (I really cannot fathom an experienced and qualified gun smith insisting that 4895 is too fast for 270 Win. It is a very ordinary powder for that cartridge, used in millions of rounds for almost 70 years. He's just flat wrong.)
 

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Not being there and not examining the rifle myself, my thoughts are conjecture. But based on experience.
  • IMR4895 and H4895 are both excellent for 270 Win. The gunsmith is wrong that the powder is too fast. Completely wrong. I cannot express how wrong he was.


  • That's what I was thinking...

    While short lived itself the .30-'03 was the parent cartridge for two very popular rounds. 270 Winchester and .30-'06. The '06 loves IMR-4895 from my experience.

    I haven't reloaded for the 270 so when that was mentioned I compared IMR 4895's position on the burn rate chart to all the other (many) powders for that cartridge listed in Hodgdon's online data and it's distinction is that it is near the middle of the pack!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Trigger creep I think you are on target. The rifle was customized before I ever shot it. I have been reloading for many years, but never neck sized. You described my issue very well, including the loose primer pocket. You jogged my memory. I had a primer fall out of one of my brass. I will learn more about headspace. I will test the brass in my rifle after neck sizing, but before loading. Brass had been neck sized/fired 4 times. I had my best groups w/IMR 4895. I did not think headspace could be an issue.

Thanks to all for the excellent advice. I may have questions about headspace. Thanks again
 

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I have a relevant question about neck sizing dies. Do the neck sizing dies (I generally use RCBS) only contact the neck or are they designed to be adjusted to bump back the shoulder?

If they only contact the neck, how can you bump back the shoulder a bit without full length resizing?

I would think that they should be adjustable to bump back the shoulder so you could adjust the headspace while still allowing the case below the shoulder to conform to the chamber in which it was fired.

If you try to neck size with a FL resizing die by just backing it off a bit, wont that mess up the headspace by squeezing the brass below the shoulder and causing the case to elongate?
 

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That looks real good, but I wonder whether the neck sizing dies from other makers such as RCBS, Redding, Lyman, and others also can be adjusted to bump back the shoulders.

Edit: I finally found the neck sizing dies on the RCBS site and saw that they only touch the neck.
 
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