Starline Brass: Process to Perfection | Starline Brass "The Brass Facts" Episode 1

[Intro Music] >>NARRATOR: Starline presents: "The Brass

Facts" >> BRANDON: In this episode of "The Brass

Facts" we're taking a behind the scenes tour at Starline

with process manager Hunter Pilant, as we learn how Starline manufactures the

world's highest quality ammunition brass. So come along as we experience "The Process to Perfection".

>> HUNTER: Hi Brandon. >> BRANDON: Hey Hunter. >> HUNTER: Welcome to Starline.

>> BRANDON: Thanks a lot man. Ready to do the tour?

>> HUNTER: Let's do it. >> BRANDON: Alright.

>> HUNTER: This is 260 alloy, which is 70 percent copper, 30 percent zinc.

This is standard cartridge brass; this will be the industry standard.

>> BRANDON: So this is how it arrives? >> HUNTER: This is how we get our material.

>> BRANDON: Where's it go from here? >> HUNTER: It goes into the first draw.

>> BRANDON: The first draw. >> HUNTER: This is the first draw press.

Basically, you've got a punch that's drawing this cup into a longer, skinnier cup

by pushing it through a series of carbide dies

progressively getting smaller. >> BRANDON: So what's it look like when it

comes out of the first draw? >> HUNTER: It's taken this cup and turned

it into that. After the parts have been first drawn,

they get washed and ran through our annealing furnace.

This furnace is running about 1130 degrees. >> BRANDON: It takes it back to soft?

>> HUNTER: It takes it back to dead soft. That way we can work it again in the second

draw process. >> BRANDON: Where we heading next?

>> HUNTER: We're going to wash these and then they will go back to the second draw.

>> BRANDON: Alright, let's go. >> HUNTER: Alright, this is our second draw

process. Here, we're taking our first drawn part that's

been annealed and we're going to go ahead and get it to

the final diameter and the finished wall thickness.

It's going to be the same process as the first one was.

Punch drawing the part through a series of carbide dies.

Here we have our first rim process. They're taking that second drawn part that

they just washed and they're trimming the excess material off

of it. They're checking the parts with a snap gauge

to ensure proper length. Alright, right now, what she's doing is she's

sorting these parts for the rings we've cut off at the trimmers

and she's also looking for any defective parts. >> BRANDON: This is the first time it gets

hand inspected. >> HUNTER: This is the first hand inspection.

Here are the headers. Right now they're forming the primer pocket,

forming the rim, and they're also putting the head stamp on.

12 parts out of every tray are inspected for about 13 different features.

They're going to check for primer pocket concentricity, primer pocket depth,

primer pocket diameter with a "go/no-go" gauge, rim diameter,

rim thickness, length,

and web thickness, And web thickness is the distance between

the bottom of the primer pocket and the bottom of the case.

>> BRANDON: That's a pretty intensive inspection process.

>> HUNTER: It is. After that, we go to the head turns.

>> BRANDON: Alright. >> HUNTER: Here we have our first head turn.

We're taking the headed part and we're going to cut some of the extra material

off. From here, she's going to hand sort these

cases and they're going to go to the second head

turn. At the second head turn, we're taking our

first head turn part and we're going to put the finished rim diameter,

rim thickness, and extractor groove on that. She's sampling this. Every few hundred cases,

she'll sample four to five. >> BRANDON: So through another inspection?

>> HUNTER: Another inspection. She's going to check for rim thickness,

rim diameter, and extractor groove diameter.

And she's also going to check and make sure that the rim is actually concentric with the

body. From here it goes back to the sorting table

and is hand inspected again before moving on to the venter.

This machine is the venter. It's actually putting the flash hole into the primer pocket.

>> BRANDON: It's punched, not drilled right? >> HUNTER: It's punched not drilled.

>> HUNTER: From here, we move over to the final trim.

The final trim is trimming that case down to its finished length.

It's getting inspected in this snap gauge. After final trim it will go back to the sorting

table and be sorted before moving on to the next

process which is the taper press.

>> HUNTER: Several of the cases that we produce are tapered cases.

This is a taper press. It's got a carbide die that is actually forming

the case to a taper. They're checking...

>> BRANDON: Nine millimeter? >> HUNTER: Nine Millimeter.

They're checking these with a plug gauge to make sure that the mouth diameter is correct

and not too large. From here, these cases are going to go to

our finish inspection machine called the eye. The finish inspection machine the eye.

The reason they call it the eye is because of this fiber optic cable.

If it doesn't see a flash hole then it's hooked up to a magnetic brake that

shuts the machine off and they know they have a part that does not

have a flash hole. It's also set up with ball bearing D pins

on this arm. So if a part comes through that's too long

or too short it will kick out and they know they have a

part that's the improper length.

>> BRANDON: So it's a real high level mechanical inspection.

>> HUNTER: Yes, it's a mechanical inspection. >> BRANDON: Where we heading from here?

>> HUNTER: Polish. Here we have our finished product.

This product's ready to be packaged and sent out the door to the customer.

>> BRANDON: Looks good man, looks really good. It's quite a process.

>> HUNTER: It is. We do our best. >> BRANDON: So how many pieces of brass are

you sending out a week? >> HUNTER: About 3 million cases a week.

>> BRANDON: 3 million cases a week. Well I tell you what, I thought it was an

impressive tour. Thank you for your time.

>> HUNTER: No problem >> BRANDON: I learned quite a bit about it.

I never knew there was so much into making a piece of brass. Thanks a lot.

>> HUNTER: You're welcome back anytime. >> BRANDON: Alright.