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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Northern Berks County, PA
Re: ANNEALING BRASS /Have you tried to ?
I do it.
I use a mapp gas torch with a latch on the trigger so that I can light it and keep it lit hands-free. You can use propane, but the brass will need a little more time in the heat.
I put the brass in a deep socket, have to play with socket sizes to get the right match to the different brass sizes you anneal, but you want the brass to slide in and out easily, and the shoulder should be exposed, but not much below it.
I put a towel next to the torch, folded over a few times.
I use a basement work bench in my basement where there is no outside light and I turn the lights out.
I chuck the socket in a drill, then light the torch.
The brass goes in the socket, spin the drill, and put the mouth/neck in the flame at full speed on the drill. Watch it...it'll change colors. The trick is to get it out before it goes red, but JUST before.
Dump it from the socket (don't touch it!) onto the towel. Doesn't need to get quenched in water or anything, just on the towel is fine.
You should see the brass clearly show they were annealed when cooled (same sort of coloration you'll see on military ammo that's also been annealed).
Use old brass to start...you'll torch (literally) a few until you get it down to a process. You can get tempilaq (spelling?) or similar that will indicate when you hit the right temps....some handloaders do that. I've been able to get good results without it, but that's a point of debate among those who anneal.
Why do it?
The main reason is to prevent cracked necks, but there are more benefits.
If you anneal every other load cycle or so, you keep the neck tension more consistent, too. If you couple it with partial full length sizing, you are doing two great things to extend your brass life:
1- preventing the necks from work hardening, and
2- preventing case head stretch
You can run brass a loooooooong time by doing these things.