About Rifle Cartridges

About Rifle Cartridges

I use brand new unfired cases and bullets in my kits. This makes for cartridges that look like real ammunition, including the imperfections. Although I try to cull out the most noticable defects, a close inspection will probably show:

Surface texture
such as small pitting and scratches. A rifle case is not perfectly smooth like plated pen parts. The manufacturers do not sand the brass before nickel plating. Expect a "sparkle" shine, rather than a "mirror" shine.
Small dings
especially near the case shoulder. These are sometimes imparted by the manufacturing process, and also when bulk-packed. I resize all the cases in a precision die, but some marks just don't iron out.
Brass discoloration
not to be confused with tarnish. This comes from the heat-treatment (called annealing) manufacturers use to keep the brass malleable, and from the baking stage of the powder-coat process. It shows up as a darker ring around the case head, and as pinprick dark spots (usually on the case neck). I try to minimize these marks by choosing brands with harder brass alloys, but some discoloration is unavoidable.
Such imperfections are normal and should not be considered grounds for return.

About Finishes

I offer the following finishes on the cartridges:

No finish
will tarnish over time. With use, the cartridge will develop a patina that some pen owners prefer. If the owner wants a shine, he will have to polish the cartridge periodically.
Brass lacquer
is a finish that is specifically formulated to adhere to brass and copper. It preserves the bright colors of a freshly polished cartridge and can last for years. Eventually, however, it may wear off and then the cartridge will need polishing, as above.
Powedercoat
is the most durable finish available. It stands up to almost anything short of acetone (and nail-polish remover) for a lifetime. The powdercoating process, however, darkens brass and copper somewhat. Do not expect powdercoated bullets to match the bright pink color of copper plated pen kits.

Order Turnaround

I make bullet pen kits to order, so there is necessarily a delay before shipping. The manufacturing process itself takes at least three days (two steps require an overnight wait). That, along with my work schedule and shipping times mean that you should allow at least a week of lead time when ordering. I try to accomodate rush orders, but please understand that there are real time constraints involved.

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