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Work hardening brass.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/13/2012 at 04:16
8shots View Drop Down
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I read an artikel the other day on how to harden copper. Apparently brass falls in the same category.
To soften copper you have to heat it. End of story. The cooling, quickly, slowly, water, air etc, plays no role.
To harden it again it has to be worked, or the crystals moved about. For example bending backwards and forwards. Shooting and resizing.
But it can also be done by other means ie brushing with a steel brush, sandblasting, shaking. Even loud music (must be Led Zeplin or Uriah Heep) will do the trick.
 
Now, thinking a bit further....does a tumbler not cause more hardening then our shooting and resizing?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/13/2012 at 09:33
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I think the reason for cooling quickly like dropping in ice water is to stop the heat from moving down the whole case.  Most of the hardening happens on the neck, so that is the place that it needs softened up.  They say if you soften up the case head very much, it will be more likely to cause a failure. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/13/2012 at 23:22
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I hear you on the the tumbling, Wouter. I know that is one of the big arguments over using the newer stainless medias. But it seems to have negligible affects so far.
 
 Annealing is still one of the reloading voodoo's that I haven't had much success with...I usually just buy new brass.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/14/2012 at 05:01
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Originally posted by supertool73 supertool73 wrote:

I think the reason for cooling quickly like dropping in ice water is to stop the heat from moving down the whole case.  Most of the hardening happens on the neck, so that is the place that it needs softened up.  They say if you soften up the case head very much, it will be more likely to cause a failure. 
 
I,m with you on this, but some people think that cooling slower (or faster) helps anneal the brass. Or hardens it again etc etc. On one of our local forums we had a longgggggggggg debate about how best to cool and why.
 
The reality is that the cooling does not harden (like in steel) the annealed parts.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/14/2012 at 08:57
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i do it the hard way. i have blacksmith friend who is a fellow rifle loon. he told me the best way to anneal cases is to do it one at a time, by handShocked take a benzomatic tourch and a bucket of water, and hold the case by the rim and when its too hot to hold drop it in the bucket. its odd how it works,  cause the case goes from fine to hold to way to hot right now, it will scare you its so sudden of a change. ive been doing this with 22-250 cases for years, seems to help extend life, i imagine if i didnt fl size they would last even longer.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/14/2012 at 18:36
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Originally posted by 8shots 8shots wrote:

I read an artikel the other day on how to harden copper. Apparently brass falls in the same category.
To soften copper you have to heat it. End of story. The cooling, quickly, slowly, water, air etc, plays no role.
To harden it again it has to be worked, or the crystals moved about. For example bending backwards and forwards. Shooting and resizing.
But it can also be done by other means ie brushing with a steel brush, sandblasting, shaking. Even loud music (must be Led Zeplin or Uriah Heep) will do the trick.
 
Now, thinking a bit further....does a tumbler not cause more hardening then our shooting and resizing?
 
 
You're supposed to put tumbling media with the brass which acts as a cushion
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