Case life is a term used by those that engage in reloading, it simply is the number of times a case can be safely reloaded. As a round is being fired, the case comes under extreme pressure, this pressure changes the shape of the case causing it to conform to the chamber dimensions, sealing the passage of hot gasses. While the case does spring back a bit allowing for easy extraction, it must be resized during the reloading process to ensure it will chamber. This working of the brass causes the case to lengthen thus weakening the critical head area and also causes it to be come brittle, both limit case life. Maximum case life can be achieved by loading below maximum and by neck sizing.
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