Nickel Plated Brass?!?!?!?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Honeybadger, Dec 10, 2016.

  1. Honeybadger

    Honeybadger AH Veteran

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    Hey guys, I just purchased a Sako Brown Bear XL chambered in 500 Jeffery! You may have seen my post about it. I don't have the gun in my possession yet, as I placed it on lay away, in order to spread out the rather hefty price tag over several months. Anyway, I have been doing my own reloading since I was a kid.......and I'm looking forward to dialing in some loads for this thumper. My question is............will nickel plated brass cause I problem with rounds wanting to pop out of the magazine?? I've read reviews recently where people were having this problem with some of the larger calibers, and it was with a variety of makes for rifles. I myself have never experienced this, and I wouldn't think it would be a problem, especially since many of the high end dangerous game cartridges that are already loaded, feature nickel plated brass....................can anyone confirm or deny this problem for me, before I drop A TON of money on some shiny, shiny nickel plated goodness!
     

  2. Rob404

    Rob404 AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I can't offer any help on that Monster caliber, but I have never had a problem with Nickel Plated brass on either my 375HH or my 404Jeff,, plus Nickel plated brass has a cool factor
     
    D.M.V and 375 Ruger Fan like this.

  3. wesheltonj

    wesheltonj AH Elite

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    I own a SAKO in 375 H&H, not a problem. If you think it might be, just scuff them up a little, by repeatedly recycling them.

    For everything SAKO see here:

    http://sakocollectors.com
     

  4. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin AH Veteran

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    Nickel brass not only looks cool, if you're carrying it around in a leather cartridge holder, it's also more resistant to tarnishing.
     
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  5. Honeybadger

    Honeybadger AH Veteran

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    Damn skippy!!!!!!! I'm going to purchase a box of factory shells, just for the nickel brass, and risk it!!!!!!!! I wish I could find the nickel elsewhere. But the cartridge companies must have a deal with whoever is making that brass, to be exclusive with them. Cause I can't find it anywhere by itself!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
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  6. CAustin

    CAustin AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    You are on it Honeybadger. I look forward to a range report when you get this new rifle home!
     
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  7. Honeybadger

    Honeybadger AH Veteran

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    Will do.............I think I am keeping the rifle open sights for it's entire life too! I wanted to ask you guys opinon?? I'm sure it will be more than accurate enough to warrant a scope............but a caliber that size just screams open sights to me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

     
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  8. Devin Twitty

    Devin Twitty AH Veteran

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    From my knowledge of brass. Nickel general doesn't last as many reloads, feeds a little better, you'll want harden die set or the nickel can and will destroy a reg set. Be sure to get federal or win nickel if they load for that cal as they have been the best I've seen for quality and case consistency.
    The reason for nickel case is corrosion and easier feeding. If your not in bad weather and with a straight wall case I don't see a reason to buy the nickel other then the look.02
     
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  9. ChrisG

    ChrisG AH Fanatic

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    I will only add that the Nickel plating process will make the brass brittle. It will likely not last any more that 3 to 5 loadings in a cartridge that big. You don't need to worry about how hard the Die set is. All reloading dies are made from tool steel and hardened to the rockwell hardness of a mill file or better. Besides, Nickle is a pretty soft metal, much less than steel and not much different than brass and it work hardens much like brass. The problem arises from the fact that nickel and brass have different coefficients of expansion and work hardening. The brass work hardens at a faster rate while the nickel expands at a different rate. My best guess is that this is why they don't last as long as regular brass casings... A chemist would know better as to why they crack so soon.
     

  10. Devin Twitty

    Devin Twitty AH Veteran

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    If my memory serves me right most die sets are only about 58-62 on the rockwell scale and nickel is 59. A carbide set of die's is needed to help prevent sand, dirt etc from scoring the dies if you use nickel plated brass. I've used standard dies but you have to be very clean with everything and clean the dies out as well after every use.
     

  11. ChrisG

    ChrisG AH Fanatic

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    Nickel looks to be a 4.0 on the moh hardness scale. Identical to elemental iron which is quite soft when compared to even mild steel or a good bronze. I've used nickel in knife making and it is quiet soft and malleable. The reason people get scratches on brass is because they don't lube their brass properly. Flakes of nickel pressed into the die surface will absolutely scratch brass under those kind of pressures. Think about it. The nickel would harm your rifle chamber if it were harder than your dies because loading dies are much harder than barrel steel.
     

  12. Honeybadger

    Honeybadger AH Veteran

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    I think I'll make it easy on myself and just go with regular Norma brass.............I don't feel like dealing with the added worry of the wear and tear on my equipment from the nickel. With normal dies......I wouldn't worry to much...........but with dies that cost almost $500, NO WAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
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  13. Devin Twitty

    Devin Twitty AH Veteran

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    Ouch that is some big coin. Are they carbide?
     

  14. Honeybadger

    Honeybadger AH Veteran

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    Nope.......neck sizer though!



     

  15. Devin Twitty

    Devin Twitty AH Veteran

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    Have you looked at the rcbs die?
     

  16. Honeybadger

    Honeybadger AH Veteran

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    Those are RCBS.



     

  17. Ray B

    Ray B AH Elite

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    I've loaded Nickle and Brass cases for 38 Spl, 357 Mag, ,223, .308 W, 30-06, 404 J & 458 Win. I haven't noticed any problem, or difference in life expectancy of them. It seems the Nickle plated brass stayed a little cleaner in field conditions and was less prone to turning green.
     

  18. Devin Twitty

    Devin Twitty AH Veteran

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    Take it your not in the us?
     

  19. Honeybadger

    Honeybadger AH Veteran

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    I'm in the US...............and I've loaded nickel plated brass for all sorts of other calibers. And, upon doing some more thinking, and reading more recent replies to this thread, I'll most definitely be purchasing some nickel plated for the Jeffery as well!!!!!!!!!!!



     

  20. Devin Twitty

    Devin Twitty AH Veteran

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    Midway has your dies for 169.99 3 die set
     

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