- Mar 27, 2020
- clay county fl
Within any lot of brass there will be weaker cases, and the higher the pressure the quicker some fail. But per round costs should reduce until you once again need to replace the brass. Another way to look at it, if you purchase a thousand rounds of factory loaded ammo that is reloadable, you have an immediate supply on hand plus 1000 pieces of brass for the future, and time to collect components while stocked with usable cartridges. Some Brass has more desirable features (IE Military Rifle Brass has a thicker webbing) and may only be purchased in quantity in Factory Loaded Form.30-50 cents per round gets reduced by the number of times you can reload that brass. I've got .357 brass with probably 10-12 firings on them at mag pressures and I've got .38 brass that has probably 20 on them before I start seeing split cases. That means that the first loading might be 64-84 cents the following loadings are 34 cents per round, which is a hella lot cheaper than factory ammo. I rarely consider brass cost in the cost of reloading because the cost diminishes with each loading I get out of that brass until it's so negligible that it doesn't really matter.
I don't have much experience with .44 magnum loading, so I don't know how many times a single brass case can be reloaded, but unless you're using garbage brass or a worn out cylinder that allows for a good bit of brass expansion, I can't imagine a scenario where you wouldn't get less than 8 loads, and that's running hot ammo.
Just like powder cost, if IMR4227 is used in place of Unique not only is the cost per pound greater but since it'll take a 24 grain charge to drive a 240 grain JHP to 1200 fps (instead of 11 grains of Unique) your powder costs more than double. There are only 7000 grains in a pound of powder, so 11 grains of Unique will throw 636 charges but 24 grains of 4227 will only throw 291 charges.
Yet, projectile costs are probably the greatest variable. Back when wheel weights where made of lead it was possible to cast a Number of Bullets to the penny, instead of the current rates of $ per hundred. One of the advantages to Copper Jacketed Projectiles is reduced Lead Fowling and subsequent less time, effort, and cost for firearm cleaning.
But everything comes at a price! As Daezee said, reloading allows you to tailor your loads to attain maximum accuracy and consistency for individual firearms. No two firearms (even from the same Model & Maker) will achieve maximum accuracy with the same load. So reloading allows for complete customization, yet it might also give one trouble in a court of Law (Self Defense.) dependent on the jurisdiction.
If I could find a .44 Mag 240 JHP @ 1200 fps load in reloadable brass at/or less than $1.10 per round it would make me happier than the CCI Blazer Not reloadable aluminum cased, but as of yet I haven't found such a critter. Everything's a trade off. JMHO.