What is Once Fired Brass (OFB)?

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

This is brass that has been fired at least one time, it may have been shot once, or 10 times. There is truly no way of knowing unless you personally took a box of factory new ammo, and shot it, then picked up each piece and ensured it was the same as you just shot.

Our brass is washed, then sorted by size and steel/aluminum/Berdan primed cases are removed. Once fired reloading brass cases are mixed commercial, military and foreign, headstamps (usually shown in mm) and non-commercial casings which have crimped/sealed primer pockets.

Many people think that OFB has only been shot once, however they may be delusional if they really believe that. Some also think that brass from a military range or a law enforcement (LEO) range is only fired once, however, that is not the case either. True, the military and LEO are not normally allowed to shoot reloads in their duty weapon, however, there are many who shoot reloads through other guns they bring to the range, such as a shoot after qualifications or during off hours competions. Thinking back, I have yet to see any range with a barrel that says “ONLY ONCE FIRED BRASS” and the next barrel saying “BRASS FIRED TWICE OR MORE.” Perhaps your range has it, mine doesn't.

Factory ranges probably have the best brass, but it is hard to get and even then there are still reloads being shot on occasion, if only for testing purposes. Additionally, indoor ranges that clearly state “NO RELOADS,” know that some of their customers are shooting reloads. Next time you are at a range that has that policy, take a long look around you and see if the guy who is picking up his brass is shooting from brand new, unopened boxes of ammo.

We have processed brass from all types of ranges over the years; military, LEO, factory, and private ranges, and have seen brass in each of them that has been shot repeatedly. Those that advertise their brass has only been fired once are giving you a good advertising pitch.

This is the difference between theory and real life. In reality, high 90+% are fired only once, but not 100%, so if that is good enough for you, then you know what to get. Like I used to tell people, “Do you want to know the truth, or do you just want to feel good?” 


Leave your comment
10/30/2020 9:47 AM

The last 380 OFB I bought from you it had a few 9 MM shells in it, my Lee Value 4 hole turret I have would not accept them in the casing slide. The case holder would only accept380 ammo,but so far so good.

9/16/2021 12:29 PM

Is this explanation for the as yet uninformed, or for those new to shooting, or is it for the "delusional"?
That being said, "delusional" seems unnecessarily pejorative and is perhaps the wrong word since in my experience delusion is a sickness often found in the Will and which cannot be easily educated away.  And yet ignorance, provided it is not a problem with and in the Will, can be removed by education.  An old Master once said, some need to be educated, and others need to be punished.  
Anyway the language seems ill chosen especially in an educational piece.  JWC

ADMIN COMMENT: JWC, it is mostly for those that either don't really know, or those that have always believed that it has only been shot once. Many think that if it is a LEO or Military range it can only be shot once. However, we service several LEO/Military ranges and run across a LOT of brass that is not service brass (such as 45-70, 22 TCM, 44-40). Many have been reloaded...