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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Northern Berks County, PA
I haven't reloaded for one...yet. I will be.
But I would imagine some of the same practices as used with the 30-40 Krag would make good sense with the Brit, too.
First, I wouldn't hot rod this one. SMLE's are not 1917's, Springfields, or Mausers. They're strong, but not overly so. Action stretch is an issue, as witnessed by the interchangeable and varying length bolt head system. Head space grew, and the longer bolt heads were the answer that was put in place.
Similarly, the Krag wasn't a bank vault, either.
I wouldn't push either for every shred of speed from any bullet.
Also, these both will benefit greatly from partial full length sizing. If you reload for such a round and don't have one yet, a Hornady comparator set would be a wise investment. I use mine to measure the length of a case from the case head to the shoulder. Doesn't much matter WHERE the collet hits the shoulder so I just use one that hits between the start of the shoulder and start of the neck. I set my sizer die so that the shoulder gets pushed back about 0.002". I chamber the empty brass in the rifle and feel how it goes in. If there's resistance seating the bolt, I'll push it in to maybe 0.005". You want that shoulder moved back the minimum amount required for proper bolt function.
If you do a full "factory" resize each load cycle, your cases will pop in short order and you'll be trimming brass like crazy.
If you partial FL size them, you'll cut way back on how much trimming you need to do and your brass will last a long, long time.
I can run you some QuickLoad data when I get home on the Brit, but my two BIG cautions are to Partial FL size, and keep the loads moderate.