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Thread: Need help with 338 chamber size

  1. #1

    Default Need help with 338 chamber size

    Shot my new Tikka T3 Lite yesterday and it didn't go well. Made up some loads with new brass that was necksized, Hornady 225s and 68 grains of RL-19. I was looking for a mild load to use for break-in. The max is 73.3 of RL-19 for this bullet. I checked the casings after the second shot and both primers were totally flat filling all of the primer pocket and there was a bulge just past the belt. Pulled the rest of the bullets and weighed the powder. It was 68 grains. The RL-19 was still there on the bench. Primers were Fed 215.

    Went back today with a box of factory Federal 225. Ther primers were not as flat but the ridge is still there. It extends about .085 ahead of the belt and the case diameter in that area is .519. I compared some Remington brass fired from a friend's Mod 70, there is no ridge and the brass measures .513 or less in the same area.

    Is this normal for Tikkas? Since the increase in case diameter is greater that .005, is this a sign of too high pressure even with factory ammo? Is there a way to check for a over-sized chamber?

    Thanks in advance,

    Mike J

  2. #2
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    Mike,

    The load is a mild one. The bulge isn't from high pressure. It is normal for the bulge to be there but some chambers are just slightly over sized and bulge more. I don't think it is normal to see a Tikka chamber that much over sized, I've never seen it in a Sako or Tikka. Does this bulge go all the way around or more on one side? Will the fired brass go back in the chamber easily? Have you resized any of these cases?

    The maximum case dimension at the point is .513", a reamer is normally .002" to .003" larger giving a max chamber diameter at the base of .516". Your Tikka is obviously bigger, because brass will spring back .001" or .002" after firing. An oversized chamber can be determined by taking a chamber cast then measure appropriately. Since the fired brass from factory ammo also does it is the chamber dimensions. You could probably shoot it for ever and if accuracy suits you it won't matter. It's not like it's going to get worse.
    The biggest problem is that the dies will size it down and overwork the brass .
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  3. #3

    Default

    not tried to reload the cases yet. Should I full length size or neck size since they do go back into the chamber and the bolt closes normal? I ordered one of the Innovative Technologies belted magnum collet resizing dies last night. Hopefully that will make the brass last a little longer. Will send an email to Berretta today and ask if there is anything they are willing to do about the big chamber.

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    Good idea, rattle Beretta's cage. Yes, if they go in now just neck size and load 'em. Let me know how those IT dies work out.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  5. #5

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    Just spoke with Beretta. They said send it to them and they will check it out. No promises until their gunsmiths look at it. They did say send the once fired brass with. They are running about three weeks behind so I should know something in a month or so. Thanks for the advice.

    Mike J

  6. #6
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    Default 338 Chamber

    Mike
    I am not sure if it will help you at all but when I get new brass for my rifles, I sort them by weight and then full length resize them. In my mind it helps take care of any issues with the brass being handled. I am not sure how many time you want to use your brass but I have some that were loaded as many as 12 times. I use only unfired brass for hunting. Once it has beed shot the brass is only used for target pratice. I do not have a new rifle as mine is an old (new in 1971) Winchester MD 70 and have not have any issues that were not fault.
    Good luck with your new rifle.

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