USA – -(Ammoland.com)- Reloader Bob Shell quality checks and reviews the Kinetic Industries 308 WIN Brass Casings. In spite of all of the anti-gun rhetoric, or because of it, there are new ammo and component companies starting up.
That is good news for shooters because as we all know components and ammo can be hard to get and waiting periods are sometimes weeks or months.
Since I devote a lot of time to studying and writing about ammo and reloading, any new companies producing those products interest me. In my opinion, there is room for companies who manufacture ammo and the various components of good quality and fair prices.
Kinetic Industries Ammunition & Components
A brand new company just starting up is Kinetic Industries. At this time their website is finished and in use. They are currently taking orders for all calibers to include 308 WIN MATCH, 338 Lapua, 260 REM, 6.5 Creedmoor and 458 Socom as well as the great 300 Winchester magnum.
I spoke with Paula Jansen, VP of Strategic Partnerships. She stated that their focus is on customized and flexible solutions and consider their customers partners. “Basically, we create our programs and production schedules in accordance to what our partners need. The goal is to provide them with a solution to meet those needs, invest in their growth and maintain a sustainable relationship with measurable results. We refer to this as The Kinetic Difference”
For someone looking for customization, flexibility and results based focus this might be just the company to contact. For more information, you can visit www.kinetic-ind.com , email [email protected] or call direct 916-776-2118
Kinetic Industries 308 WIN Brass Casings
They sent me some 308 WIN Brass Casings to test and evaluate. Some measuring shows that the brass is consistent and since the headstamp shows that it matches brass consistency that will be important.
KINETIC INDUSTRIES .308 BRASS CASING SPECS
- Primer Pocket Diameter: .2080 – .2090
- Head diameter: .4680 – .4720
- Head Thickness: .048 – .054
- Length to Shoulder: 1.634 – .007
- Overall Length: 2.002 – 2.010
I measured about 10 of the Kinetic Industries 308 Winchester Brass Casings and they were within .002 of each other and weighed within 4 grains, both show good quality.
A match shooter looks for consistency with the primer pocket and flash hole. The neck should be concentric which means the brass is the same thickness all around the neck. That is necessary to properly grip the bullet all around. If one side is thicker than the other, accuracy may be compromised. The brass has to be malleable but not too soft or hard. Both cause various problems. Good brass has the ability to be reloaded a number of times without failing. While not as important it should look attractive which if nothing else will give the user confidence in the product quality.
I am not a match shooter but there are several characteristics I look for in brass, mostly durability. I do a lot of brass forming which tends to put stress on the brass in some instances and inferior brass will fail.
There isn’t a lot you can do with 308 except neck it up or down though in most instances those calibers are available such as the 243 through the 358 Win. You can shorten them for such rounds as the 22-250 but since that is available such a conversion is not necessary. Years ago the 308 was made into the 44-auto mag, which works but is time-consuming and no longer needed.
Another thing to look for is split necks. With normal loads, that is the most common reason for brass failure. What happens is when you size brass it gets brittle over a period of time especially the neck which changes the most in sizing and firing. Annealing prevents that but for common brass it is not worth the time. Depending on various factors, brass cases usually last from 5 to 10 firings with normal loads. Hot loads will reduce that quite a bit as the primer pocket will expand rendering the case useless.
In all honesty using match grade brass in a typical hunting rifle won’t help out in the accuracy department, though there could be an exception here and there. The tolerances on a production rifle are not tight enough to benefit from a match product. It certainly doesn’t hurt anything either. With modern CNC type of machining tolerances are tighter but match accuracy isn’t a reality with most of them. If you have a typical hunting rifle and you can put three shots into an inch at 100 yards then you should be set. Some will do better but there are more important factors in a hunting load such as good bullet performance and reliability. With the rifles that I have, groups of 1 to 1& ½” at 100 yards would be good. In a precision cut chambering and rifle ¼” groups would be a realistic expectation.
A match shooter or sniper requires more precision than an average hunting rifle and load. Their rifles are custom made with very tight tolerances as a small fraction of an inch may make the difference between 1st and 15th place in a match. A sniper who may engage a target at 7 or 800 yards needs precision to be successful, as it can mean life or death for our side.
As a rule, all brass should be sized even new. Most new brass can be loaded without sizing but you run the risk of uneven bullet seating pressure which will render the ammo inconsistent which may be important in a match. There are three ways to size cases. Match shooters use neck sizing as it is considered to produce the most accurate ammo and longest case life. For the most part, it isn’t an advantage and that brass frequently won’t chamber in other rifles. I have tried neck sizing but I found that after 3-4 firings the case has to be full length sized in order to chamber. Since I generally use full length as I hunt or experiment I don’t want to be bothered with ammo that won’t chamber. Full-length sizing is the most common method and is useful for most applications. Small base dies bring the brass back to original specs with the advantage that it should fit in any rifle tried.
For shooters with multiple rifles in the same caliber, this would be the way to go. In theory, it will reduce case life because it works the case more than the other two methods. In reality, I doubt that there is any real difference given the same loads.
While not scientific I pay attention to the feel of various operations. If they feel the same it is an indication of consistent brass. I primed a bunch of these cases with WW and CCI primers and the amount of feel was the same for each brand. The CCI were a bit more difficult to seat but by no means a problem. The Kinetic Industries 308 WIN Brass Casing’s primer pockets are the same size and the flash holes are the same diameter and perfectly round. All of that sounds trivial but this is what match shooters look for. I have worked with some poor quality brass, some required a couple of different shell holders to load, plus different lengths and even had some that had no flash holes what so ever. I drilled some but when I tried to prime them the rims came off.
That other brass was very expensive and I wasn’t amused at all. Fortunately, that isn’t a common occurrence.
Testing 308 WIN Brass Casings
I wanted to do a couple of tests which will produce some info. Half of the cases were primed with WW (winchester) large rifle and the rest CCI # 200 large rifle. As mentioned the CCI primers were a little more difficult to seat though not a problem. Then they were all loaded with 44 grains of IMR 8208 Powder and 150-grain bullets. PRVI bullets were used some FMJ and the rest a soft point. Then 2 rifles were used the # 1 is a bolt action Mauser and the other a FN-FAL. I used the new IMR Enduron Powder in a couple of loads and it works well in the 308 and similar size rounds.
|13 grains Trail Boss||85 gr Sierra RN||1866.2 FN-FAL||OK|
|44 grains 8208 WW||150 gr FMJ # 1||2584 Mauser||Consistent|
|44 grains 8208 WW||150 gr FMJ # 2||2603 Semi||Nice|
|44 grains 8208 WW||150 gr Privi||2557 Mauser||Consistent|
|44 grains 8208 CCI||150 gr FMJ #1||2569 Semi||Very Consistent|
|44 grains 8208 CCI||150 gr FMJ # 2||2533 Rock Island||OK|
|44 grains 8208 CCI||150 gr Privi||2493 Mauser||Consistent|
|43 grains IMR 4166||180 gr Sierra||2562.78 Mauser||Nice|
|41 grains IMR 4166||200 gr Speer||2372.3 Mauser||Consistent|
|9 grains Trail Boss||220 gr cast||1046.2 FN-FAL||Very Consistent|
I did quite a bit of measuring. Kinetic Industries 308 WIN Brass Casings that were not fired measured .468 to .4685 and after firing they measured .471 to .4715, so the expansion was about .003 which would be normal. All new cases will expand some upon firing and brass from both rifles were measured.
I have a small base die and used it in the loading process, which brought down the cases to .467 to .4675 again normal. The cases sized in the SB die were noticeably harder to size and I don’t recommend using it unless necessary. They were harder to extract from the SB die and in fact if the rims were not as good I would have concerns regarding stripping the rim off which would be a major pain. With lesser quality brass, I have experienced that problem.
In any event, cases sized with the normal die worked in any of the guns tested.
One way to evaluate any brass is by feel. It may not be in scientific books but once you learn the technique feel that can be very useful ( see my article Reloading Ammo By Feel ). Every reloading operation requires some effort to achieve though most are relatively modest. If you are paying attention then you will notice the amount of effort needed to do that operation. If you are going along and one round is either noticeably easier or harder to do then there is a reason and you should see why. If you have consistent cases then everyone should have the same amount of feel. When you learn how to use feel the operations will be smoother.
Doing the normal reloading operations of the Kinetic Industries 308 WIN brass casings, I noticed that everything is consistent. That means that sizing effort is the same and the other operations show consistency. There is no way to measure that but if the loading operations are consistent from case to case chances are the ammo will be consistent also. In order for ammo to be accurate, each round has to do the same thing that all of the others do. That includes velocity consistency or a low standard deviation. Part but not all of that is the quality of the brass.
The standard length of the Kinetic Industries 308 WIN Brass Casings is 2.015 and the unfired brass measured 2.005 and was consistent. That was after sizing. After resizing, they measured from 2.001 to 2.021, in theory some would have to be trimmed to maintain length. In reality, trimming isn’t needed unless they were going into a match chamber. After another firing or two and trimming will be necessary. After the second firing, some of the cases stretched a bit so everything was trimmed to the recommended length. That is completely normal. Some of the loads were light which is an area that I like to experiment in. Cases that are too long can be difficult to chamber in addition ammo will not be consistent and can cause excess pressure in a few instances. That is especially true with small calibers and high-intensity loads. All of that is normal and I did nothing extra with these cases. I always chamfer the case mouth as it seems to make bullet seating more consistent.
If I was looking for a match load in a 308 I would definitely start off with Kinetic Industries 308 WIN Brass Casings .
I have shot a decent number of rounds utilizing this brass and there are no problems with it in any regard. If you are looking for a good quality product in the calibers they offer I would give the brand Kinetic Industries a thumbs up.
About Bob Shell
A Custom Reloader of Obsolete and Antique Ammo, Bob Shell, writes about the subject of Guns, Ammo, Shooting and Related Subjects. Visit: www.bobshellsblog.blogspot.com