Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #111
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    Default Re: Advice on Reloading

    Quote Originally Posted by frankski View Post
    Another thing when you’re reloading cases like 9mm which index on the case mouth vs the rim: at the “crimping” die, just remove the belling in the case to return it to straight. If the mouth is crimped, it will not index properly and may jam.
    Quote Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
    It would be good to take some measurements with your calipers and check against reloading manual. You might see flair is still there or too much crimp as frankski said.
    This........increase the flair till a bullet can stand in the case by itself and sits about 1/16 under the case mouth. If you get any lead shavings increase the flair. Then you have to crimp the flare back at your sizing die. Put a sized case in the bullet seating slot and screw the die down till you feel it touch. That will get you close. Adjust the crimp till the bullets easily drop in the chamber with the slide open it should fit flush. The bullet should also drop out when you tilt the barrel up.

    In general you don't want the bullet to touch the rifling or pressures can increase. The easiest way I found is to get a dry erase marker, blacken the bullet and gently push it into the chamber. If you see the rifling marks on the bullet it is touching and too long. This can also be the reason it doesn't pass the plunk test. The bullet may be jamming up in the rifling. Every bullet has a different ogive so you can't use another bullets recommended OAL.

  2. #112
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    Default Re: Advice on Reloading

    Quote Originally Posted by bamboomaster View Post
    Sometimes, it's OK (and can be a time saver) to use a real case gauge instead of a "plunk gauge". That way, you can see what may be occurring on both sides of the gauge....

    Attachment 132046
    I like case gauges as they allow you to eyeball more of what is going on and I load for many guns, so if it fails the case gauge, I reject the round. I check every round in the case gauge.

  3. #113
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    Default Re: Advice on Reloading

    Although 9mm technically can go out to 1.158, some euro guns like CZ and Walther will not like that and will choke on it. I pretty much don't go over 1.135 for 9mm

  4. #114
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    Default Re: Advice on Reloading

    Quote Originally Posted by spandexlurch View Post
    I adjusted the powder and belling die slightly this evening and made three more dummies as a consistency test. My brass is assorted Blazer, Federal, and Winchester with a Tula or two in the mix. The first dummy I had made previously had sheared some lead and coating off the bullet which made it fail the plunk test and got jammed in my 92FS. After adjusting the die I was ably to seat the next three with no shearing, although if my measurements are correct I've shorted the OAl down to 1.140-1.148 which is just a little bit smaller than my control factory round which when measured was 1.158. I don't think that should really be any cause for concern and should be within normal tolerances. I'll plunk test all three after I get off work today, then it's on to testing the powder drops. Once complete with powder drops I'm going to see if I have any issues with the primers feeding as was indicated to me by the seller that I may have an issue.
    Lead bullets are larger than the FMJ that your powder funnel/expander was designed for.
    Sometimes more belling will help. Sometimes it won't depending on the bullet.
    There are aftermarket powder funnels for lead bullets that mimic the "M" die. Instead of just belling the mouth they evenly expand the whole neck. They can be ordered in .001 increments.

    I fought the lead shaving issue with cast bullets with the factory SDB expander. Some brands worked and some didn't. I actually had the best luck with steel valley casting bullets. Ron is a member here. I cast most of my own now but if I was buying them that's what I would buy.

  5. #115
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    Default Re: Advice on Reloading


  6. #116
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    Default Re: Advice on Reloading

    Quote Originally Posted by wanneroo View Post
    I like case gauges as they allow you to eyeball more of what is going on and I load for many guns, so if it fails the case gauge, I reject the round. I check every round in the case gauge.
    I never saw the point of a dedicated case gauge. The chamber specs are standard but like others have mentioned there can be a big difference in freebore before the bullet engages the rifling. That can depend on the manufacturer and no case gauge can tell you what is correct. As long as you fully resize a case in the sizer die the case is back to SAAMI specs. The only time you can have a problem is if you neck size a case that was shot in a longer chamber and try to shoot it in a tighter chamber. But you should never do this. Only neck size bullets for the same rifle. If you shoot the same reloads in more than one rifle fully resize all cases. This means turning the sizing die to touching the shellholder and then another ~1/8 turn. You should feel a slight bump then the press is fully extended. Seating a die to touch the shellholder without a case may not fully resize the case. There is a little spring under load and the case may not fully enter the die.

    Checking every round is excessive. If you are worried check a few in the actual chamber while you are setting up then load away. I have loaded tens of thousands of rounds and never had any chambering problems if everything is set up correctly to begin with.

    Quote Originally Posted by wanneroo View Post
    Although 9mm technically can go out to 1.158, some euro guns like CZ and Walther will not like that and will choke on it. I pretty much don't go over 1.135 for 9mm
    The OAL length you see in reloading manuals are rarely correct. And European firearms do not always conform to US SAAMI specs with regard to throat length. I have in my reloading notes the length to the lands for just about every bullet /firearm combination of everything I reload for. The fastest (and cheapest) way to find this is to take a fully sized case then take a dremel and make 2 cuts in the neck where the bullet goes. Blacken a bullet with a dry erase marker and seat it long in the case (it should move in and out with little force). Then insert it into the camber and seat it hard with your thumb. When you take the case out the bullet will be seated by touching the lands and you will know your max OAL. Seat your bullets 0.025 shorter for rifles and maybe a little shorter for pistols as long as they can still fit and feed from the magazine. Some firearms have excessively long throats.

    Using this method sometimes the bullet will get stuck in the lands a little and get pulled out some when you extract the case. That is what the dry erase marker was for. Put it in your calipers and reseat the bullet till the black dry erase markings meet. That is you Max distance to the lands. Check all of your 9mm's and find the shortest throat then develop a load for it. That load will be safe in the pistols with longer throats.
    Last edited by Delkal; May 3rd, 2020 at 11:25 PM.

  7. #117
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    Default Re: Advice on Reloading

    Quote Originally Posted by wanneroo View Post
    Although 9mm technically can go out to 1.158, some euro guns like CZ and Walther will not like that and will choke on it. I pretty much don't go over 1.135 for 9mm
    Same here but I only make 115gr RN in 9mm. They shoot well in my Walther, SA, Glock, Sig and H&K 9s.

    I only plunk test the first few rounds of handgun ammo after changing the setup on my 550. I have toolheads for all of the calibers so it's a pretty much perfunctory check. I have a good case gauge for 223/5.56 and do use it on every round of those I make and I measure every powder charge for them as well. I had a problem with the resizing die not fully reaching the base of some 223 rounds that I discovered using the case gauge. I called Dillon about it and they said it was OK to overtighten the resizing die by as much as 1/2 turn to make sure it covered the entire cartridge length. I did about 1/4 turn and that solved the problem.
    NRA Life Member

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