FlyfishermanMike wrote:I was told that the federal champion brass with the stars on the outside of the FC (* FC *) came from a factory that provided ammo mainly for Wal-Mart. That doesn't mean it isn't safe. It's worked fine for me and reloads just as well as the FC stuff.
I call that stuff something along the lines of "dot-FC-dot", or "FC-dot".
It appears most often as: ●FC● or ●Federal● (dot before and after) or FC● (dot only after).
Referring to semi-auto handgun cartridge brass (.380 Auto, 9mm Luger, .40 S&W, etc)...
There are two primary handgun cartridge case production facilities for ATK (umbrella corp of Speer, Federal, CCI, RCBS, etc).
There's one in Minnesota that draws their cases. They generally only produce Federal-, FC-, or Speer-stamped cases.
The other facility is in Lewiston Idaho. They produce both drawn and extruded cases, with every possible head stamp in the ATK 'family'.
Extruded cases are not as consistent or as tough as drawn cases. If the casing in question is available as both a drawn and an extruded product, then the extruded version will be "dot" (●) brass. If it is only available as an extruded product, then no dot will be present (such as with CCI and Blazer brass).
In addition, extruded cases have different case capacity than the otherwise identical drawn cases. I don't recall which has the higher case capacity, but my notes say that the difference is 7% (volume).
There are also different versions of cases, that can be identified by other means.
All ATK brass with a cannelure in the case, where the base of the bullet would be, is either +P or +P+ brass. It is drawn with a different alloy than standard brass, and has lower case capacity (due to thicker walls and web). Even if the brass was from standard ammunition (not +P/+P+), or isn't marked "+P" or "+P+", the casings themselves were
manufactured as +P/+P+ cases. They should be separated from mixed brass, and loaded separately.
There are also different types of nickel-plated brass. Nickel plated cases can be extruded or drawn, and can have any one of four different types of plating on them. Generally, the extruded brass will have the plating flake off about 30%-50% earlier than drawn brass. Speer's "low luster" nickel-plating has the best wear resistance and rarely flakes off before total case failure. It will wear off
, but rarely flakes off.
I need a new signature. This one sucks.