full brass cased 12 gauge in a semi auto?

Nov 17, 2016
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i have always wanted to try my hand at seeing if i can get some full solid brass cased shells of 12 gauge to feed reliably in a magazine fed semi auto shotgun- more precisely a AK (saiga 12).

now there has been some solid brass ammo i have noticed that has popped up from time to time but its never really been affordable, to be honest this entire venture doesnt sound or seem like it would be all to affordable so i was reaching out to others about this to hear others thoughts that may have more experience.

so i have seen some winchester ww2 victory ammo pop up but its no longer produced and really expensive, apparently they used solid brass 12 gauge in ww2 and this is essentially reproduction ammo that was like 25$ for 5 rounds. at that price i wouldnt have minded spending 50$ and getting 10 shots just to say im probably the only person on the internet to have ever done this. but alas, that ammo is going for 50$ for 5 now. 10$ a shot? im thinking there has gotta be a better route to achieve this with potentially better results in the longterm and financially making it more cost affordable.

has anyone ever fired 12 gauge solid brass in a pump? any kind of semi auto or autoloader?

the winchester ammo looked like it has a slight roll crimp going around the edge.

so i know there was some other ammo i seen that was really hyped up. some kind of oath ammo that looked really expensive that supposedly expanded to the size of a fist or something. anyhow ive never really seen it for sale on anywebsite at all.

i guess this oath ammo was worth mentioning though.

now recently i saw that taflodermous had made some interesting homeade 12 gauge ammo,

almost looks like a oversized pistol ball ammo to me.

anyhow. from what i have seen if your into handloading 12 gauge with minimal tools this brass case ammo is really good for over unders, break opens, things like that. i see people make there own shot cards from paper or cardboard and just leave the edge on the mouth of the brass as is, they just hotglue or use wax to seal the card at the top of the shell. i guess when your hand loading the shells into the chamber of a shotgun it shouldnt really make any kind of difference.

well, this got me thinking - the issue with cycling reliably would be figuring out the crimp on the brass. i guess with reloading i know enough to know you start out small and work up a load to find what works so finding the correct powder to cycle would come down the road, but getting the ammunition to feed to me would be the hardest challenge if it could even be done.

i dont reload 12 gauge at all and do not have any experience with it. but i was able to find this - https://www.huntingtons.com/store/product.php?productid=19678
its a RCBS die kit for 12 gauge brass shells of some kind, and it says that it can also put a roll crimp on the 12 gauge brass.

but im not even sure how or what you would use this kit in... i have no idea how shotgun reloading presses work and what this would be compatible with...

also finding the shells seems like a challange right? so,
where to get brass 12 gauge shells from eh?
i found empty hulls here -


anyhow. my main concern is if i was to get these magtech brass shells i think they would take a little work to get into a useable shape, converting the primer pockets to take the correct 209 primers and not large pistol primers. but- my main concern is how in the world would i roll the edge on those 12 gauge shells to feed reliably?

i doubt i will ever make this happen, but if some solid brass 12 gauge ever pops up that looks like it would feed in my autoloader thats affordable im probably gonna buy it.

if anybody knows a cheap way to roll the edge, i guess you would call it a roll crimp? on 12 gauge brass id like to hear your thoughts or ideas. another thing that would be a concern is - suppose i did do some type of modification to the rim of these magtech brass cased shells to get them to feed, i would think they would wear out prematurely and i may not get alot of use out of them if the edge has to be rolled. you know, you can only fold metal back and forth so much before it snaps off. plus i have no idea about the shotgun shell length or size and these shells seem a bit more difficult to reload than normal plastic hull shells because they are like some kinda specialty cowboy type thing. i think people use those magtech shells with black powder possibly in older break opens, over unders and side by sides.

sorry, i dont have much experience with reloading, but id love to try to do this just for fun. i think it would be crazy to shoot a semi auto with brass that big ejecting out and ping'in off the cement at a gun range.

probably just gonna give up on this idea, but hey i can dream right haha? it just seems like it would be really cool and definitely stand out. i just think it would be awesome to try or fire shells like this out of a gun like that.
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Mar 8, 2016
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I've always wanted to do this, but in my lever 10. Something about hunting with a lever action 10ga shooting full brass sounds fun.

That being said, with all the work to shoot just a few for the fun of it...you're probably better just paying the price for a few boxes on Gunbroker than buying all the stuff to modify, form and load a few rounds.

Uncle TK

Sep 12, 2013
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Oklahoma City
Manufacturing Begins
Brass shotgun shells began appearing around 1865, when ammunition companies started manufacturing shotshell. By the end of this decade, paper hulls were on the market as well. In 1885, the history of the shotgun shell was changed forever. Frank Chamberlin created a machine that loaded 1,200-1,500 shotgun shells an hour, exponentially more than anyone could do by hand.

Throughout the Wars
Since shotguns had such an important role during the Civil War, it’s no surprise the US military used them in World War I, World War II, and the Korean War. To prevent misloadings, Federal stated color coding its shotshells and in 1960, this became the industry standard. At the end of the 1960s, Remington introduced plastic shells.
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