Handgun Corner: Sorting Brass


Originally Published 10/2009


Question: Is it worthwhile sorting handgun brass; for example, GI (decrimped) vs. commercial or nickel vs. brass, before reloading?

Answer: I have not seen any difference in the various brands of empty cases for the 1911 45ACP. But nickel cases do split much faster than brass cases, so I would not use nickel cases. But stay away from cases that have “AMERC” on the bottom of the rim. The primer holes are slightly smaller. Priming these cases with normal large pistol primers can be dangerous since the primers can get crushed and go off. Also be sure to discard all steel and aluminum cases. These should not be reloaded.

As for split cases, if you are only shooting for fun, don’t worry. I have found that cases with split lips shoot just as accurately up to 50 yards. So don’t waste your time sorting brass. And you can reload those cases with split lips. I shoot them all the time with no problems.

With the other popular calibers like 357 mag, 38 Spec. 9mm, don’t worry about mixing GI, commercial, brass or nickel. Just reload them. Accuracy should not be hurt.

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