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 Post subject: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2013 9:13 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
I'm tired of messing with crappy Winchester brass...the last batch I bought was too short, almost too short even in the headspace measurement...I still used it, after considerable effort to get it into shape...don't wanna do that any more.

I know Nosler makes brass, probably good brass...but I'm leaning towards Lapua or maybe Norma.

You guys seem to be the most honest crew I know of so I'm asking...

Is there any significant difference between Lapua and Norma brass...specifically 30-06 brass.

Price is not a primary concern...I just want the best brass.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2013 9:27 pm 
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Location: British Columbia
Either is top notch stuff, some guys think Lapua is better but I have been happy with both brands. I'm starting to come to the same conclusion as you, R-P and W-W brass can be inconsistant and a guy can waste a lot of powder and bullets trying to find a good load.

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 2:54 am 

Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2011 2:13 pm
Posts: 324
Location: center of Pa
I use some Norma brass . it is way more consistent than rem or win brass . it also has a machined flash hole . there is no prep work to Norma brass , I like it . I just ordered my first batch of Lapua brass last night . from what I've read it supposedly will take a little higher pressure than Norma , before the primer pocket loosens .


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 5:38 am 

Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 10:01 am
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Location: USAF base somewhere
I have used Lapua, Norma, Nosler, and Hornady brass for 30-06. Here's my opinion of each:

Lapua: probably the "toughest", has roughly 1 less grain water capacity than any other brand, meaning it's the thickest. Neck thickness variation from the 3 batches I have purchased have been okay...but not great. I think Lapua's 6mm BR brass is the gold standard for thickness and consistency, but the Lapua 30-06 brass I have used has not been as consistent in neck wall thickness (and hence, body thickness) as I would have expected. Longevity is excellent--better figure out how to anneal with Lapua brass.

Norma: best consistency from a neck thickness standpoint. Has about 1 gr water capacity more than Lapua. I haven't used it long enough to report on longevity.

Nosler: between Lapua and Norma for consistency. About the same case capacity as Norma. Probably made by Norma, but my handloads shoot better with Nosler brass for some reason that I still haven't figured out. Big downside--only sold in boxes of 50 instead of 100 or larger.

In short, they're all great brass, but none of them are perfect. I now lean to Nosler brass over the other two, because it's a smidge cheaper and I get what I feel is as good a product.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 5:43 am 

Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 10:01 am
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Location: USAF base somewhere
P.S. I just checked the Sinclair website and Norma brass is a bit cheaper than Nosler brass now.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:41 am 

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Location: Northern British Columbia
I preferentially use Norma or Lapua brass. Norma has a better case selection (I just bought several hundred pieces of 35 Whelen and 7X57 Mauser) than Lapua. However, either makes me smile when working up a load. I get good life out of Norma brass, but I don't push my loads to the pressure limits--I'm looking for accuracy rather than velocity.

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:53 am 
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Location: Northern Virginia
I think in the 30-06, if you are spending the money, Norma or Lapua will serve you about the same. All of the Norma and Nosler brass I have used has been excellent. Lapua is just about the toughest stuff out there.

Be interesting to see what you think after your first run. Good brass seems to save me money as I have less culls, less powder burned finding a load and I have much less doubt about it being the reason for a flyer...

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:24 am 

Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2005 9:46 am
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Location: FLA
I've been using Norma Brass for my .300WSM and it's been holding up beautifully. I've annealed my cases once and have probably 10 firings through each. Accuracy seems better than using the other brands.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 5:52 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
Thanks for the replies guys...

I'm still undecided, thinking about getting some of both...but that don't really seem like a good idea either.

I'll research it some more this weekend before I make a decision.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:16 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
On 2nd thought...I'm gonna get Lapua...with a reputation like theirs, it can't be a mistake. I should get several reloads out of it...some folks claim 8-10, but if I get 5 that brings the price down to about 22 cents per case...if I get 10 its 11 cents...sounds better when you figure it like that, LOL.

I will post my thoughts on the 14k gold plated brass after I've had a chance to see what its all about.

Gonna order at least 200, maybe 300...would like to get 1,000 but thats getting pricey for this time of year (my job is somewhat seasonal)


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:35 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
Brass is ordered...now if I just had powder to fill it, LOL.

I think I have about a pound of H4350 still...looks like I better make it last.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 4:58 am 
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Location: Northern Virginia
Ridgerunner665 wrote:
Brass is ordered...now if I just had powder to fill it, LOL.

I think I have about a pound of H4350 still...looks like I better make it last.


Ha, good luck with that! I am getting low on RL19 and scrambling to get more.

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 7:37 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2006 2:49 pm
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Location: Northern British Columbia
Ridgerunner665 wrote:
Brass is ordered...


You won't regret the Lapua brass.

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 4:49 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
I had my wife weigh my H4350 today and see how much I have...

One jug (the jug for her 270) weighed 10 oz., jug and all....my jug weighed 11 oz.

I'm guessing the jugs weigh about 2 oz....thats enough to hunt with provided I don't have trouble re-working my loads in the Lapua brass...I'm not gonna have time between now and hunting season to do a full load development...I'll have to take the shortcut and load the Lapua brass to the same velocity (2,850 fps) as my previous load and hope it shoots at least good enough to hunt with...don't take that to mean I'm not gonna test the load for accuracy, thats not what it means...it just means I'm taking the easy route...load one at 56 grains, chrono it, 56.5 chrono, 57 chrono, etc....when I find ~2,850 fps...load 5 and see how the group looks.

Thats the best way I can figure to do this until I get the time and powder to do it right....I am gonna find THE most accurate load for this rifle/powder/bullet/brass combo...just don't have the time or components to do it right now.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 6:20 pm 

Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 10:01 am
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Location: USAF base somewhere
RR655, in a 30-06, when I switched from Lapua to Nosler brass I noticed a slowdown of about 15-20 fps. My previous "best" load with Lapua brass was my best with Nosler brass also. The powder in my case was Ramshot Hunter.

Let us know how the switch goes for you, if you think of it. I haven't committed to not going back to Lapua brass...


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 6:53 pm 
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joelkdouglas wrote:
RR655, in a 30-06, when I switched from Lapua to Nosler brass I noticed a slowdown of about 15-20 fps. My previous "best" load with Lapua brass was my best with Nosler brass also. The powder in my case was Ramshot Hunter.

Let us know how the switch goes for you, if you think of it. I haven't committed to not going back to Lapua brass...


That makes sense...the Nosler brass has more capacity and as a result less pressure for a given load.

The Lapua brass should show a slight increase in velocity over the Winchester brass I've been using.

I will, for sure, relay my findings right here...


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 9:05 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
Lucked up and found some H4350 in stock, after an exhaustive online search...ordered 4 lbs.

Wanted 8 lbs. but those were not in stock, decided to take what I could get and be happy!

Glad to have it, still working on the being happy part...the 8 pounder would only have been about $50 more :!:


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:18 am 
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Location: Northern Virginia
Ridgerunner665 wrote:
Lucked up and found some H4350 in stock, after an exhaustive online search...ordered 4 lbs.

Wanted 8 lbs. but those were not in stock, decided to take what I could get and be happy!

Glad to have it, still working on the being happy part...the 8 pounder would only have been about $50 more :!:


In todays market, taking what you can get is a smart move....

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:20 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2006 2:49 pm
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Location: Northern British Columbia
Ridgerunner665 wrote:
The 8 pounder would only have been about $50 more :!:


Go back now and grab that!

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 6:04 pm 

Joined: Sun Jun 19, 2011 10:00 pm
Posts: 410
Location: Northern Idaho
I've used just about every brass known to man kind, the Norma and Nosler brass are about on equal terms although I do like the Nosler brass better then the Norma stuff, at least the batches I have on hand that I bought years ago.

I have been using the Lapua stuff with great success and will agree the primer pockets are butt pucker tough.... lol. But honestly, I've had the primer pickets get lose on my Jarrett brass after two-three firings, which is made by Norma. Mind you these are really Hot Loads but Kenny's guns tend to really shoot well that way.

You wont be unhappy with your purchase.

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 Post subject: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 6:34 pm 

Joined: Tue Jun 11, 2013 10:00 am
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I am working with my first 100 Lapua 308 cases. Have now fired them all once in my CZ550 Varmint with good results, and have reloaded 50 of the fire formed cases with my best known accuracy load for some serious testing (168 Berger VLDs over 42.0 Varget, CCI BR-2 primers). I have refrained from doing anything to the new Lapua brass except for a very light chamfer to the neck before reloading. Neck wall thickness is consistent, but the case lengths are somewhat variable, particularly after first firing.

The best accuracy with my CZ is with bullets seated touching the lands. It had been my thought to leave the case necks as long as possible, but I don't know if trimming to a uniform case length of, say, 2.007" would be the better option. By comparison, I am also testing resized 30-06 brass necked down to 308, turned, reamed, and trimmed to 2.014", and the preliminary results with this resized brass has been excellent.

Should I delay any trimming of the Lapua as long as possible, or trim it back to uniformity?


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 7:32 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
Case trimming is most important if you turning the necks or if you are crimping the bullets...

Its always better to have consistent length IMO, it seems to me it could mount up to inconsistent bullet pull which can effect ES and SD numbers.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 7:37 pm 
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Location: Tennessee
While we're discussing "procedures"...

I've been reading a lot of stuff from German Salazar about 30-06 accuracy secrets...he says he sizes his brass for .000"-.001" headspace, which prolongs brass life a little...he claims up to 13 firings, and that bumping the shoulder is not required on some rounds, the 30-06 being one of them.

He also claims that this doesn't hurt the bolt lugs because of the 30-06's mild 17.5 degree shoulder angle...that makes sense to me...but I've never done it.

I'm gonna try it...I've never cared for neck sizing only...if Germans way works, its the best of both worlds.

I'm anxious to load a few rounds in the Lapua brass and get some measurements...I may have to turn necks myself...the chamber in my 30-06 is a very tight one...I had it checked (I don't have the tools) and it is within SAAMI spec, but very well to the tight side of it...this fits with FN's claim about the chambers in their SPR line of rifles.


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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 10:28 pm 

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Location: billings montana
Both are similar in quality, if your going to run your loads on the stiff side get the lapua, if you are going to run consetvative loads norma will last as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Brass...Norma vs Lapua
PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2013 10:52 am 
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Location: Tennessee
Got a few rounds loaded in the Lapua brass...ready to check the speed and find max in this brass. I stopped at 57.5 grains (H4350) because that was a lightly compressed load...same as 58 grains in Winchester brass.

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The Redding National Match dies...are great! Redding makes their dies so they size to SAAMI minimum head space...and FN makes their chambers to SAAMI minimum also...a match made in heaven.

I started out with the sizing die set 3 turns above contacting the shell holder...at that setting it left a small part of the neck unsized...I worked my way down until it was just barely bumping the shoulder...turns out I could have just followed the instructions with the die because that's exactly where it ended up...contacting the shell holder.

The micrometer seater....why in the world did I wait so long to get one of these? The thing does just what it says it will...seats bullets with less runout, precise seating depth adjustments are easy as pie...the micrometer is accurate.

The Lapua brass...again, why did I wait so long to try it? It is VERY consistent in weight and length...I checked 100 cases and every one was within .5 grain in weight and .001" in length.


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