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Reloading WIN Universal vs. AA Hulls

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Mr. D, Sep 25, 2009.

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  1. Mr. D

    Mr. D Member

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    Being new to the sport of Trap Shooting the next logical step in the sport is to reload my own shells if not for the cost than for the hobby aspect (in for a penny in for a pound).

    I have been buying Winchester Universals at Wal-Mart and have been shooting roughly 100 shells a weekend. During my first weekend at the range I was saving the Universals hulls but was told by one of the range workers that these hulls could not be reloaded so I threw them away and have continued that for the last 1000 rounds or so. Now I’m looking more closely at this and asking the question why they can’t be reloaded and this same person said something about the hull makeup is different. Brent375hh started a thread on this very subject a few days ago and the general consensus was reload then 1-2 times.
    I have always been a trust but verify kind of person so I did my own little science project tonight and came up with some interesting results. The only visual difference between a Universal and AA hull is the head and tube thickness. The Universal has a steel head and .017 tube thickness and the AA is brass with a .029 thick tube.

    During my research I discovered that Winchester produces 2 basic types of hull; the compression-formed "AA" hull that is a smooth-sided, one-piece, bright-red hull with no basewad and a Polyformed hull similar in color with a much softer plastic and plastic basewad. It is also stated that it is easy distinguish between the AA and Polyformed hulls from the outside, but the Polyformed hulls have a variety of basewad colors and heights. I didn’t see this in the two examples I used as a compairison.

    Maybe I’m missing something here but I see no difference from a reloading standpoint between the universal and AA hulls other than tube thickness which would lend to the AA hull giving more reloads.

    I will let the experts here weigh in on their thoughts between to two.

    Dennis


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  2. Quack Shot

    Quack Shot Active Member

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    The two hulls are similar, but not exactly the same internal dimensions. Using lower pressure loads for the AA hull in the Universal hull would probably be OK, but you would likely get a little less velocity. I would not load the Universals more than once or twice. I would also not use any data where the pressure was much over 8500 - 9000 PSI. The AA is a better Hull to load, but some people are afraid of the two piece design and don't load either ones. The Universal hulls also take a little extra tweaking to get the crimp right. The Remington Gun Clubs load fine, as do the STS and Nitro. Most of the Remington hulls can be loaded the same as the STS hulls. I've reloaded a LOT of the less expensive Remington Sport Loads in 1oz. Stay away from the Remington UMC hulls, since they are not the same.

    Reloading is fun, if you enjoy that sort of thing. I personally do, so it's a natural thing for me to get a "kick" out of using my homegrown loads and doing well in competition. To get started, you need a SCALE, press, hulls, and the rest of the components that the data you are using lists. Substitutions are I'll advised, unless you really know what you are doing and you have data to support it. Load and component selection is half the battle. Keep the pressures reasonable and don't load anything over about 10,000 PSI.
     
  3. Ahab

    Ahab Well-Known Member

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    I reload the Win Universal hulls once and toss them.

    2nd loading is iffy, because the tend to crimp weird. Probably due to the thinner walls.

    I reload them just like I do the AAs.
     
  4. Rick Barker

    Rick Barker Well-Known Member

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    Main difference between the two Winchester shells is the AA has a brass base and the Universal is "steel." Some reloaders cannot resize the "steel" bases on the Universal (also Estate, Gun Club, etc., etc.) If the reloader you are using does not resize the "steel" base, you could experience extraction problems after firing. Some reloaders can easy resize brass, but not steel.

    Other than that, you might notice some ugly crimping, but the Universals will work just fine.
     
  5. hmb

    hmb Well-Known Member

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    It seems that the universal only has one ounce of shot and a taller wad. HMB
     
  6. brent375hh

    brent375hh TS Member

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    Last weekend I reloaded a box of these with data for AA. They crimped like factory and shot well.

    After looking back to this thread, perhaps it was not the smartest move. If you look the the photos of both hulls, you will see that the AA looks like the base wad is kind of "riveted" to the rim, but the base wad of the universal is not. Having one of these fall into the barrel after the shot might not be the result I want.

    Thanks Dennis for the disection & photos.
     
  7. Baber

    Baber TS Member

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    Personally I would not load any of the current Winchester hulls. The Universal is very cheaply constructed and the "AA" is not much better. There are other hulls that are better. The STS is probably the best. I have been loading the European Cheddite hull for some time and have learned what to look for and have all the proper wads and primers but I have been reloading for 30 years and know what to look for. Suggest you stay with the one piece designs till you get more experience.

    Tom
     
  8. short shucker

    short shucker TS Member

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    Mr.D,

    If I may, just buy the Remington gunclub/sportload shells. These hulls will reload more times than you will be able to count. They cost a couple of dollars more a hundred, but are well worth it because of the hulls.

    ss
     
  9. Tripod

    Tripod Well-Known Member

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    Iowa man!!
    The six star crimp sport loads load well on my 650. I do not have to change crimp starter either. I don't think there is a more durable hull made than sport load or gun club.
     
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