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posted
I don't mean "How does one anneal a case?".

I mean, what machine or non-machine method are you using?
Giraud?
Annealeze?
Anneal-rite?
Torch and a pan of water?
Tesla coil? (That I want to see!)

Bruce




"I cannot spare this man. He fights!"
-Abraham Lincoln

"At the core of liberalism is the spoiled child — miserable, as all spoiled children are, unsatisfied, demanding, ill-disciplined, despotic and useless. Liberalism is a philosophy of sniveling brats."
-PJ O'Rourke
“It is just as difficult and dangerous to try to free a people that wants to remain servile as it is to try to enslave a people that wants to remain free."
-Niccolo Machiavelli

 
Posts: 3328 | Location: NV | Registered: October 06, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I don't have an expensive annealing machine. I use the Lee shell holder base in a drill that you use with their trimmer. I put the torch on the bench, turn out the lights, and anneal by rotating the shell with the drill over the torch. Drop it out on a towel, insert new shell, anneal, repeat.

It's not the fastest way compared to an annealing machine, but it does the exact same job for about $495 less, and I don't anneal hundreds of cases. My loading is more about expensive rounds done in low volume, like 416 Rigby.

I never liked the "torch and pan" method. It doesn't get the heat evenly distributed.



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Posts: 481 | Location: DFW | Registered: May 03, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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^^^^
Way cool! I like the indexing method.



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It’s a Geneva drive. I started out wanting an annealing machine for cheap but it cost too much just to have one part CNC cut so I had a batch cut and sold the rest of the “blades”. Then had more and more cut. There are hundreds out there now.

http://castboolits.gunloads.co...-auto-annealer-today
 
Posts: 481 | Location: DFW | Registered: May 03, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Annealeez. Best $275 I spent on reloading.

RMD




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Posts: 19696 | Location: L.A. - Lower Alabama | Registered: April 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I chuck a 10mm socket onto my cordless drill,
Turn on a torch,
Place the cases nearby,
Place a towel on the counter,
Turn off the light,
Drop a case into the socket,
Revolve it slowly,
Put the neck into the flame,
Count to five,
Drop the case onto the towel.

I keep the flame on the neck of the case and don’t try and get it to where I can see the brass heat while the room is dark. When I’m done, I look at the neck and if it’s done long enough the neck will look straw colored and that will just creep past the shoulder (like a military case that shows annealing)

It took me three or four cases to figure out it takes ME a count to five to anneal a 223 case....

Edited for spelling errors

This message has been edited. Last edited by: MikeinNC,



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Posts: 6086 | Location: Texas! | Registered: October 07, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I use the Giraud machine. Works well just need to have the feed wheels and slide plate to cover the calibers you doing.

In any case use the Temp-Laq, so you want be over heating the brass when you start.


David

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Posts: 3461 | Location: Piney Woods of East Texas | Registered: November 08, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Giraud.
 
Posts: 2953 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Giraud...

Save up for the Annealer and the Trimmer. Excellent equipment. Best money you'll spend - hands down.

Quick advice for the trimmer, buy the trimmer head and case holder for each caliber you load. So you change out each without having to adjust anything.

Andrew


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Posts: 576 | Registered: May 01, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I would love to buy both from Giraud. The price is a bit daunting, for my uses.
My neighbor is also exploring reloading. If I can start some sort of "reloading club" and share some of the equipment (if not the cost) I could justify it better.

Bruce




"I cannot spare this man. He fights!"
-Abraham Lincoln

"At the core of liberalism is the spoiled child — miserable, as all spoiled children are, unsatisfied, demanding, ill-disciplined, despotic and useless. Liberalism is a philosophy of sniveling brats."
-PJ O'Rourke
“It is just as difficult and dangerous to try to free a people that wants to remain servile as it is to try to enslave a people that wants to remain free."
-Niccolo Machiavelli

 
Posts: 3328 | Location: NV | Registered: October 06, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by RNshooter:
I would love to buy both from Giraud. The price is a bit daunting, for my uses.
My neighbor is also exploring reloading. If I can start some sort of "reloading club" and share some of the equipment (if not the cost) I could justify it better.

Bruce


Doug is a long time Service Rifle shooter and a good one. His tools are geared towards folks who need to load high volume top-notch ammo. When I anneal, I usually do 2 or 3 100 round boxes at a time. Last time, I did 400 cases in one sitting as I was preparing my ammo for the Nationals.

When you're in that position, you can justify the cost of the tools. Imagine annealing and trimming 400 cases without these tools.
 
Posts: 2953 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I do see the time savings these excellent tools offer.

I may make it a "before 2020" purchase and just shoot my Federal brass a few times without annealing.
When I switch to the Lapua brass, I will anneal every time.

Bruce




"I cannot spare this man. He fights!"
-Abraham Lincoln

"At the core of liberalism is the spoiled child — miserable, as all spoiled children are, unsatisfied, demanding, ill-disciplined, despotic and useless. Liberalism is a philosophy of sniveling brats."
-PJ O'Rourke
“It is just as difficult and dangerous to try to free a people that wants to remain servile as it is to try to enslave a people that wants to remain free."
-Niccolo Machiavelli

 
Posts: 3328 | Location: NV | Registered: October 06, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I've done it just holding them in my fingers and using a torch. (on 50-90 cases, just to soften the case mouths some)

On .17 Ackley Bee brass I put the cases in a slightly larger socket, on an extension, in a cordless drill. Slowly rotating them for a set amount of time.

I've also stood cases up in a pan or water.

I anneal for forming wildcats, or slightly softening hard Starline case mouths for black powder loads. I've never done it for "brass maintenance".


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Posts: 16820 | Location: 18th & Fairfax  | Registered: May 17, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by RNshooter:
I do see the time savings these excellent tools offer.

I may make it a "before 2020" purchase and just shoot my Federal brass a few times without annealing.
When I switch to the Lapua brass, I will anneal every time.

Bruce


I would not worry about it overly much. One of the reasons to use a bushing die is to reduce the amount of work done to a case while resizing Working a case leads to, you guessed it, work-hardening of the brass. With a bushing you eliminate a large proportion of this work hardening because you are not over-squeezing the mouth like in a regular die and you're not popping it back out with an expander ball

I went for a long time without an annealer and it was really only when I started playing at the top of the game that I had to step up to try to eliminate everything "bad" that I could in the handloading process. Heck, that's why I started pointing my boutique bullets. The competition is that intense.


If there was a priority in the tools, I would suggest that a trimmer like the Giraud is more important than an annealer.

Concentrate more on the handloading process, make sure you understand it all and then go shooting. You rifle and the paper will guide you from there.
 
Posts: 2953 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by cas:
I've done it just holding them in my fingers and using a torch. (on 50-90 cases, just to soften the case mouths some)

On .17 Ackley Bee brass I put the cases in a slightly larger socket, on an extension, in a cordless drill. Slowly rotating them for a set amount of time.

I've also stood cases up in a pan or water.

I anneal for forming wildcats, or slightly softening hard Starline case mouths for black powder loads. I've never done it for "brass maintenance".


I'm sure it has worked well for you but I don't think I could ever make that work the way you describe it.

Recrystallization of brass starts at 485F. At that temperature, it can take an hour to do. By increasing the the temperature, one can drastically reduce the time so that at about 700F, it only takes a few seconds. When you see the orange glow, you went too long. I have set my Giraud right at about 8 seconds with one flame. When the case drops, there is no way I can pick it up with my bare hands.

If you do not hit that temperature, you are doing nothing to the brass but warming it up. I haven't a clue what you mean by "slightly softening" case mouths. A 45-90 case is 2.4 inches, compared to the .308's 2.005 length. That extra .4 inch will not prevent you fingers from getting burned badly holding the brass. If you can hold the case as it reaches recrystallization temperature for a few seconds, you're either a robot or totally impervious to pain.

I'm glad it's working for you because there is no way I could do that and still have anything but a warm case, definitely not one that is annealed and annealing cannot just "slightly soften the case mouth." It either anneals it or it doesn't; there is no in between, certainly not by hand.
 
Posts: 2953 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Bruce:

I tried annealing with a cordless drill, an extended socket and a torch but quickly grew tired of that. I found a reasonably priced machine to help, the Annealeez. I keep it around today as a backup should I ever need it. You can easily stack up 50 or more 308 or 6.5 Creedmoor cases and monitor the progress. The machine does’t jam or misfeed rounds and if your catch pan is big enough, always drops the annealed cases where you want them. If there is any gripe, it is not knowing for sure that you have actually annealed the brass correctly. You can try a paint-on temperature indicator like Tempilaq, but it is not easy to monitor. Also, when the propane tank begins to get below 1/4 remaining, the flame is not as hot/consistent at the end of a 50-case run as it was at the beginning. Only at low propane levels did this occur.

Like others, I have turned the lights off and adjusted speed or flame until the case just began to glow and no color change occurred in the flame. I had good results using Tempilaq and observing in a darkened room.

The benefits as you likely know are much higher count of reloadings and much more consistent case sizing and projectile seating depth. There is an improvement in SDs as well.

Depending on when you anneal you’ll likely want to experiment with lubing the inside of the necks prior to charging with powder and bullet seating. If you anneal and load on the same day w/o a lubricant you can and likely will get some galling. This is bad for consistent seating depth and SDs.

In the last four months I purchased an AMP annealer. I like the Aztec mode for it’s capability of determining the correct annealing program for a lot of brass. Maybe only because it costs more do I believe it does a better job of consistently annealing every piece of brass from the beginning of the run to the end. One disadvantage of the AMP is that you have to stand in front of it and manually insert and extract every piece of brass. A positive is that you can anneal at your reloading bench rather than the garage or kitchen—if the wife isn’t home—that is!

There are a lot of DIY plans available for flame and inductance systems opening up many options depending on your level of interest and time for that kind of a project. I would recommend the Annealeez and without reservation would say that I had very good results with mine. That said I am very pleased with the AMP and would recommend it just as heartily.

Henryrifle
 
Posts: 488 | Location: Atlanta | Registered: November 11, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Everyone has their reasons for annealing the way they do. While some methods are easier in some ways, they fall short in others.

This said, I've tested the different ways to anneal using a homemade annealer, an Annealeez, Bench Source, Giraud and AMP. My testing was not scientific other than taking readings on a chronograph for ES and SD. Rounds annealed with a torch wre set-up using dummy cases and 750 degree Tempilaq inside the necks. Sample size for each machine was 10 rounds shot over a MagnetoSpeed using a Bartlein barreled 6.5x47. All rounds were annealed, sized, primed and loaded in the same reloading session to insure they were as close to identical as possible. They were shot on a morning where the ambient temperature from start to finish was less than 5 degrees thus DA remained relatively constant throughout the test.

As for my results; my testing did not show any significant differences between annealing methods/machines. ESs were all between 15-18 fps and SDs between 5-6. I fired two 5-shot groups for each machine, ten shots total, with all groups being .5 MOA and less, which is normal for this rifle.

My take away from this was that it really doesn't make any difference how you anneal if you set the machine up properly. Ease of use/set-up, manual feed vs hopper, torch vs induction, etc. are considerations to weigh when deciding which annealer you want to purchase. My test showed me that the cost of an annealer has nothing to do with the end result.

Hope this helps...


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Posts: 555 | Location: CA | Registered: February 01, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by MikeinNC:
I chuck a 10mm socket onto my cordless drill,
Turn on a torch,
Place the cases nearby,
Place a towel on the counter,
Turn off the light,
Drop a case into the socket,
Revolve it slowly,
Put the neck into the flame,
Count to five,
Drop the case onto the towel.

I keep the flame on the neck of the case and don’t try and get it to where I can see the brass heat while the room is dark. When I’m done, I look at the neck and if it’s done long enough the neck will look straw colored and that will just creep past the shoulder (like a military case that shows annealing)

It took me three or four cases to figure out it takes ME a count to five to anneal a 223 case....

Edited for spelling errors


This works great for me. over the years, after trying other methods. I use color rather than counting and drop them in water when temp is reached. Doubt it matters. But I shoot a lot of rare metric calibers with very expensive and hard to find brass. Annealing them every few loadings seems to make cases last forever. Been loading my own since the early 60’s


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