Proper Crimping? [Archive] - Glock Talk

PDA

View Full Version : Proper Crimping?


SBray
12-02-2012, 12:11
I have just set my Dillion 550B up for 115 grain 9mm plated bullets. I took one apart to check the crimping I had applied and found the bullet had a slight ring around it. I have included two photos of the removed bullet and a finished one to show the amount of crimping I applied.

When I took this one apart, it separated with the first strike of the plastic hammer tool, suggesting that it wasn't over crimped. I did however see the slight indentation ring.

The finished bullet doesn't appear to have the edge of the case crimped anymore that what was necessary to remove the bell.

Does this appear to be properly crimped?

Any constructive suggestions would be appreciated!

Thanks,

Steve

F106 Fan
12-02-2012, 12:27
In my view it is overcrimped. There really should be a mark on the bullet.

In the case of jacketed bullets, damage to the bullet itself isn't an issue although it would be for plated bullets.

The big problem is that the bullet pulled out on the first impact. Of course you might have made a mighty blow but I usually take 2 or 3 impacts to release a bullet. When you overcrimp the bullet, you take a chance of decreasing neck tension and that tension is what holds the bullet in place.

So, I would back off on the crimp and see if it doesn't take a little more effort to remove the bullet.

One thing you want to avoid is so little neck tension that the bullet sets back while chambering. This will increase chamber pressure and that's not a good thing.

Are you using a separate taper crimp die?

Richard

F106 Fan
12-02-2012, 12:31
I guess I forgot to include the standard discussion of crimping pistol ammo. There isn't supposed to be ANY crimp on a cartridge that headspaces on the case mouth. This would include 9mm, 40 S&W, 45 ACP, etc. Heavy revolver cartridges are often crimped. Light revolver cartridges like .38 SPL HBWC target loads might not get a crimp.

All you want to do is remove the belling. If there is bell remaining, the rounds probably won't chamber. If you overdo it, you crimp the bullet. You don't want either.

You just want the case mouth closed up.

They really should call the process step something like "Removing The Bell" instead of "Crimp". There is no crimp!

Richard

Arc Angel
12-02-2012, 12:42
You want that ring; however, you've got just a little bit too much of a compression crimp there. Back off the die by about 1/8th turn.

fredj338
12-02-2012, 12:44
You do NOT want that ring, waaaaaay too much crimp. If you measure the shank of the bullet, you'll find it's probably around 0.350"! Poor accuracy & possble plating separation will occure. The crimp should not be visible on the outside & the bullet should not have any reduction in dia when you pull one down.
Your observation on the ease of pulling is actually backwards. Over crimping can REDUCE neck tension, as the case springs back a bit & the now undersized bullet comes free. You just want to remove the case mouth flare/bell, no more. A taper crimp does NOT hold the bullet in place, just finishes off the seating process.

dhgeyer
12-02-2012, 12:46
I test it with a vernier caliper. I measure the diameter of the case just below the part that was belled, but still on where the bullet is. Then I measure the part that was belled, right up at the case mouth. I want them to be the same. I take several measurements on a few finished rounds.

SBray
12-02-2012, 13:01
I'll take some measurements and make adjustments. No sense in loading anymore until I have got it correct, thanks!

Steve

WeeWilly
12-02-2012, 13:14
Just back the crimp off until you have no bell and no line on the bullet.

Crimping removes neck tension. Bullets are softer than brass. When you crimp down the case goes into the bullet and springs back slightly, while the bullet springs back less, thus reducing neck tension. This is a widely misunderstood area of reloading.

njl
12-02-2012, 13:27
Assuming you're using sorted by headstamp brass, measure the thickness of the brass at the neck. Measure the max width of your bullets. Adjust your crimp such that it's bullet width + 2x brass thickness. If you do that, you should not put a ring around the bullet.

F106 Fan
12-02-2012, 14:07
But nobody separates pistol brass. :whistling:

So it's a compromise because not only does case wall thickness affect the diameter but case length affects the amount of crimp.

Richard

fredj338
12-02-2012, 14:19
Just back the crimp off until you have no bell and no line on the bullet.

Crimping removes neck tension. Bullets are softer than brass. When you crimp down the case goes into the bullet and springs back slightly, while the bullet springs back less, thus reducing neck tension. This is a widely misunderstood area of reloading.

I think I said that WW.:dunno::wavey:

fredj338
12-02-2012, 14:20
Assuming you're using sorted by headstamp brass, measure the thickness of the brass at the neck. Measure the max width of your bullets. Adjust your crimp such that it's bullet width + 2x brass thickness. If you do that, you should not put a ring around the bullet.

That bullet has been reduced in size, has little to do with mixed brass. There just isn't that much variation in brass thickness to cause that much reduction. No, it's just over crimped. I have alos NOT seen enough case lenght variation in service rounds to worry about the taper crimp. Again, the crimp just finsihes the seating. Over doing it does nothing good & several bad things.

Arc Angel
12-02-2012, 15:00
I think we're going to have to agree to disagree. If the brass is chamfered in the way that it should be then you don't have to be fanatical about either case wall thickness or over crimping.

Too tight crimps do cause some of the jacket, accuracy, and deformity problems described above; but what's being considered, now, is crimping that is obviously way too tight. You'd have to be squeezing the dickens out of the bullet.

Over the years I have crimped tens of thousands of semi-auto bullets into cases while leaving a slight compression ring around the bullet. Never had any sort of problem with the ammunition. In fact I've got several thousand rounds of my own semiautomatic (compression crimped) ammunition in storage, right now.

Somewhat ironically Lee, 'factory crimp' dies can, and sometimes do, apply too much pressure to the bullet; and an over compressed bullet can loosen itself up making it almost impossible to safely use that bullet.

The easy way to test whether or not your crimps are, at least, adequate is to take a couple of finished rounds, and press them one at a time, and bullet first, into a bathroom scale. If the bullet doesn't set back before you reach 25 to 30#'s of downward pressure, then for most semi-autos you've done it right.

SBray
12-02-2012, 15:20
I think we're going to have to agree to disagree. If the brass is chamfered in the way that it should be then you don't have to be fanatical about either case wall thickness or over crimping.

Too tight crimps do cause some of the jacket, accuracy, and deformity problems described above; but what's being considered, now, is crimping that is obviously way too tight. You'd have to be squeezing the dickens out of the bullet.

Over the years I have crimped tens of thousands of semi-auto bullets into cases while leaving a slight compression ring around the bullet. Never had any sort of problem with the ammunition. In fact I've got several thousand rounds of my own semiautomatic (compression crimped) ammunition in storage, right now.

Somewhat ironically Lee, 'factory crimp' dies can, and sometimes do, apply too much pressure to the bullet; and an over compressed bullet can loosen itself up making it almost impossible to safely use that bullet.

The easy way to test whether or not your crimps are, at least, adequate is to take a couple of finished rounds, and press them one at a time, and bullet first, into a bathroom scale. If the bullet doesn't set back before you reach 25 to 30#'s of downward pressure, then for most semi-autos you've done it right.

Interesting way of testing!

I have become, perhaps overly cautious, when considering how thin the plating is on these types of bullets. The ones I initially damaged months ago, had the plating surface broken so as to reveal the lead. The ones I have just posted about were just slightly dented, so as to form a ring that I could barely feel.

In an effort to obtain my best results, not just for safety, but accuracy, I will take everything suggested by all of you into consideration and continue to work at the final settings.

Thank you,

Steve

WiskyT
12-02-2012, 15:25
I don't know if the crimp is causing his problem as much as the bullet might be getting sized down by the case. The crimp, in the picture, as far as I can tell, looks to be about right. Plated bullets are pure lead. They are softer than dog**** with a nearly microscopic coating of copper on them, which isn't exactly strong either. Some plated bullets are more stout than others, like Gold Dots, but generally, cheap bulk plated bullets are like gummy worms.

A short, stiff, 9mm case can squeeze down soft bullet. I would seat a couple and not crimp them at all. Pull those and see if they look like those Hebrew bullets.

Arc Angel
12-02-2012, 15:58
I don't know if the crimp is causing his problem as much as the bullet might be getting sized down by the case. The crimp, in the picture, as far as I can tell, looks to be about right. Plated bullets are pure lead. They are softer than dog**** with a nearly microscopic coating of copper on them, which isn't exactly strong either. Some plated bullets are more stout than others, like Gold Dots, but generally, cheap bulk plated bullets are like gummy worms.

A short, stiff, 9mm case can squeeze down soft bullet. I would seat a couple and not crimp them at all. Pull those and see if they look like those Hebrew bullets.

Yup, I was thinking that; but, I still think that the crimp I'm looking at in the original pictures is ever so slightly too tight. You want to leave a line; but, what you don't want to see is any bullet material bulging just ahead of the crimp line.

The majority of semi-auto bullets I've ended up pulling had some sort of line or other evidence that they were pulled bullets - including factory ammo. After thinking about it I'm going to agree that some thinner walled cases do leave fewer marks on a bullet. As memory serves me it's been a very long time since I've had a bullet set back in a pistol (any kind of pistol).

Then again, I've always applied one of those crimps that after you've run a hundred rounds or so through the press you get a little of that brass, 'fairy dust' starting to show up. On untrimmed pistol ammo whenever I saw that dust I knew the crimps were coming out right.

dhgeyer
12-02-2012, 16:22
I test it with a vernier caliper. I measure the diameter of the case just below the part that was belled, but still on where the bullet is. Then I measure the part that was belled, right up at the case mouth. I want them to be the same. I take several measurements on a few finished rounds.

I think you guys are overthinking this. I'm quoting myself so as to repeat this way of doing it, but I'll elaborate.

Steve, go back and read the directions for setting up the taper crimp die in the Dillon 550. It says, to paraphrase, start with the ram in the up position (handle down) with a seated bullet in the crimp die, and the crimp die not touching the case. Screw the crimp die down so that it is touching the case. Move the ram down (raise the handle), and screw the die down a little. Push the handle down and make the crimp. Take the round out and check it. Continue screwing the die down 1/8 turn at a time till you get the crimp you want. When you get the crimp you want, tighten the lock nut with the round in the die and the handle down.

Now, if when you are checking the crimp each time, you do it with the caliper (vernier or dial) as I described above, you will get a perfect crimp, which is really a non-crimp.

You want the case straight. Damage to the bullet isn't the only issue. These cases headspace on the case mouth. You don't want to risk the case being too narrow at the mouth to headspace properly.

I think if you hold a straight edge against a factory round, or do the caliper test I described, you will see that they are just as I describe. I just measured 3 different brands of factory rounds, several cartridges each. They all measured .375 (plus or minus half a thousandth) just behind the case mouth and at the case mouth. None of them measured different behind the case mouth from at the case mouth. No crimp. Straight case wall right out to the mouth. That's what the factories do - that's what you should do.

smokin762
12-02-2012, 16:40
I just started reloading myself. I have the Dillon 650.

One of my first problems was I was belling the case mouth too much. The crimping die didn’t seem to want to overcome this. Since, I started just making the bell big enough for the bullet to set on the case to align with the seating die. Everything seemed to work out from there on. :dunno:

fredj338
12-02-2012, 18:22
The easy way to test whether or not your crimps are, at least, adequate is to take a couple of finished rounds, and press them one at a time, and bullet first, into a bathroom scale. If the bullet doesn't set back before you reach 25 to 30#'s of downward pressure, then for most semi-autos you've done it right.

Taper crimp does NOT hold the bullet in place, proper neck tension does. SO setback testing isn't telling you much about the crimp. If you deform the bullet during crimping, it's over crimped & little good comes from that. If a pulled bullet shows that much deformation, you aren't helping your accuracy a bit, maybe not reliability either, as you can cause loss if critical case neck tension.
A faint line is acceptable, reducing the bullet dia is not. Easy enough to check, pull a bullet & measure the part inside the case. I have pulled WWB ammo that looks like that, maybe why WWB is never all that accurate. Undersized driving bullets are never going to shoot well.:dunno:

fredj338
12-02-2012, 18:24
I just started reloading myself. I have the Dillon 650.

One of my first problems was I was belling the case mouth too much. The crimping die didnít seem to want to overcome this. Since, I started just making the bell big enough for the bullet to set on the case to align with the seating die. Everything seemed to work out from there on. :dunno:

Then you were NOT setting the crimp die properly. There is no case flare that can not be removed w/ a proper roll or taper crimp. Case flare has nothing to do with final crimp.

SBray
12-02-2012, 19:07
Folks, after cleaning up from todays storm, I got some time on the reloader.

I reduced the bell opening, and worked at adjusting separate crimp station. The final round is 1.160 OAL and approximately .379 just before and at the case edge. When I removed the bullet from the case, it appears that this setting seems to crimp (remove the bell) just to the point of showing an indication that if I applied anymore crimp, there would be an indentation in the bullet. As it is now, I have to use a very close inspection to just barely see a hint of a crimp line.

Tomorrow I might try seating the bullet slightly more to see if the same crimp setting will curve the edge in more. When I run my fingers down to the edge of the bullet, there is a very slight hint of the bell remaining. The new cartridges fit properly in the case gauge without any resistance.

Also, I tried the bathroom scale push test and the bullet remained intact.

Thanks,

Steve

F106 Fan
12-02-2012, 19:15
Make sure to try your impact test again. I would think that it will take more than one hit to dislodge the bullet.

Richard

F106 Fan
12-02-2012, 19:20
I just started reloading myself. I have the Dillon 650.

One of my first problems was I was belling the case mouth too much. The crimping die didn’t seem to want to overcome this. Since, I started just making the bell big enough for the bullet to set on the case to align with the seating die. Everything seemed to work out from there on. :dunno:

The Dillon 550B manual is a little more specific about belling. They suggest that 0.020" is enough.

IIRC, the 650 manual just says to bell it enough to allow the bullet to sit on the case.

Richard

SBray
12-02-2012, 20:27
Make sure to try your impact test again. I would think that it will take more than one hit to dislodge the bullet.

Richard

Yes I did Richard, I think it was twice the effort to dislodge the bullet on this last bunch.

Thanks,

Steve

Arc Angel
12-03-2012, 06:08
Taper crimp does NOT hold the bullet in place, proper neck tension does. SO setback testing isn't telling you much about the crimp. If you deform the bullet during crimping, it's over crimped & little good comes from that. If a pulled bullet shows that much deformation, you aren't helping your accuracy a bit, maybe not reliability either, as you can cause loss if critical case neck tension.

A faint line is acceptable, reducing the bullet dia is not. Easy enough to check, pull a bullet & measure the part inside the case. I have pulled WWB ammo that looks like that, maybe why WWB is never all that accurate. Undersized driving bullets are never going to shoot well.:dunno:

:shocked: Wow, that's profound! You know, I don't think I've ever argued semantics in the reloading forum before. I've had plenty of stupid arguments, here, but none of them were semantic.

Some days I used to go through as many as 500 of my own pistol rounds; they all fired; and they all hit the target; and, on the firing line, I've never had a problem with any of my own ammunition - Ever, not even once. (What? A half million rounds?)

I don't think any of those bullets knew that they were being held in place by either the, 'taper crimp' or, 'neck tension'. (Of course, the whole purpose of a taper crimp is TO APPLY NECK TENSION along the (flat) sides of a bullet instead of directly against the cannelure.

As far as I'm concerned only a jerk bulges or deforms his bullets while reloading them. 'Reducing bullet diameter' is, as I've already mentioned, exactly, 'Why' Lee, 'Factory Crimp Dies' sometimes don't work. Do we really need to argue about this nonsense? :dunno:

If the OP simply backs off his crimp die by an 1/8th to a 1/4 turn he's going to be fine. He doesn't need to chamfer the case mouths of fret over case wall thickness. (It's mostly target ammo.) His bell adjustment appears to be correct, too. He is using plated bullets, though; and, in a semiautomatic pistol, they do need to be squeezed a little harder into the case.

Good luck with this; it's now gone on for way longer than necessary. :freak:

unclebob
12-03-2012, 07:29
I have to agree with what Fred has said. Have loaded way to many plated bullets to not too.

WeeWilly
12-03-2012, 10:28
... (Of course, the whole purpose of a taper crimp is TO APPLY NECK TENSION along the (flat) sides of a bullet instead of directly against the cannelure. .

I couldn't decide if you were mocking the notion of neck tension being added by a taper crimp, or if you were under the impression that it actually can add neck tension.

I read your post again and realized you had loaded a half millon rounds, so I concluded you had to be mocking the notion that neck tension can be added with a taper crimp.

For those newbies that don't know, crimps don't add neck tension, period. The best case with a properly adjusted crimp die is that it doesn't remove neck tension.

Neck tension is set with the sizing die, only. Everything you do after that step removes neck tension to some degree.

Apologies to all who have posted these facts previously, but this is such a widely misunderstood factor in reloading, it likely bares repeating, ah, repeatedly. :supergrin:

fredj338
12-03-2012, 13:19
:shocked: Wow, that's profound! You know, I don't think I've ever argued semantics in the reloading forum before. I've had plenty of stupid arguments, here, but none of them were semantic.
Good luck with this; it's now gone on for way longer than necessary. :freak:

Not semantics at all, your statement is just incorrect. Making ammo that goes bang is not my intention. Making reliable accurate ammo is. Overcrimp & you are makign a round that is less reliable & less accurate, just fact. Sure, some guys can't tell the diff between accurate & less accuarte, maybe that is what the issue is for many, just not me. I can see the diff in ammo made w/ LFCD, & can see the diff w/ ammo that is loaded incorrectly & over crimped.:dunno:

fredj338
12-03-2012, 13:21
I couldn't decide if you were mocking the notion of neck tension being added by a taper crimp, or if you were under the impression that it actually can add neck tension.

I read your post again and realized you had loaded a half millon rounds, so I concluded you had to be mocking the notion that neck tension can be added with a taper crimp.

For those newbies that don't know, crimps don't add neck tension, period. The best case with a properly adjusted crimp die is that it doesn't remove neck tension.

Neck tension is set with the sizing die, only. Everything you do after that step removes neck tension to some degree.

Apologies to all who have posted these facts previously, but this is such a widely misunderstood factor in reloading, it likely bares repeating, ah, repeatedly. :supergrin:
Almost right. Neck tension STARTS w/ proper sizing. Then the correct bullet size, case thickness & finally the expander button. Having thin brass & smaller bulelts, poor neck tension. A too large expander = poor neck tension. No amount of crimping will fix poor neck tension, ever, rifle or pistol. BTW, loading 500K rounds improperly doesn't make anyone right.:upeyes:

WeeWilly
12-03-2012, 13:51
Almost right. Neck tension STARTS w/ proper sizing. Then the correct bullet size, case thickness & finally the expander button. Having thin brass & smaller bulelts, poor neck tension. A too large expander = poor neck tension. No amount of crimping will fix poor neck tension, ever, rifle or pistol. BTW, loading 500K rounds improperly doesn't make anyone right.:upeyes:

Now we are talking sematics. :tongueout:

smokin762
12-03-2012, 13:55
Then you were NOT setting the crimp die properly. There is no case flare that can not be removed w/ a proper roll or taper crimp. Case flare has nothing to do with final crimp.

It was huge. I didn't know, it just needed to be big enough for the bullet to sit on.

smokin762
12-03-2012, 13:57
The Dillon 550B manual is a little more specific about belling. They suggest that 0.020" is enough.

IIRC, the 650 manual just says to bell it enough to allow the bullet to sit on the case.

Richard

I searched Youtube and found this out. When I say I am new, I am real new. :embarassed:

unclebob
12-03-2012, 14:09
I searched Youtube and found this out. When I say I am new, I am real new. :embarassed:

A word of warning. Just because someone makes a video of doing something on YouTube does not make them an expert. When it comes to reloading and Glocks I have seen a lot of you donít know what you are talking about videos.

smokin762
12-03-2012, 14:26
A word of warning. Just because someone makes a video of doing something on YouTube does not make them an expert. When it comes to reloading and Glocks I have seen a lot of you donít know what you are talking about videos.

I understand. Sometimes, I just need a place to start.

I have a friend that has been reloading for a long time. He has helped me from time to time, I just donít like to bother him too much.

unclebob
12-03-2012, 14:50
I understand. Sometimes, I just need a place to start.

I have a friend that has been reloading for a long time. He has helped me from time to time, I just donít like to bother him too much.

I cannot speak for your reloading friend. But most people that reload and know what they are talking about do not mind people asking questions. The only dumb question is the one that was not asked that blew up a gun. Just come out and ask the person if he minds helping you.

dhgeyer
12-03-2012, 14:57
OK, the OP's question was concerned with 9mm specifically. Now, the 9mm is not like other autoloading pistol rounds in one respect: the sides of the case are not parallel. Most autoloading cases are a cylinder. The 9mm is slightly tapered. A factory round measures .375 at the case mouth. Just ahead of the extractor groove it measures more like .385.

Now, most of us resize with a carbide die. Carbide dies do the resizing with a fairly narrow ring of carbide. The size of the ring is set to resize the mouth correctly. So, with a tapered case the carbide ring is squeezing the part of the case nearer the head more than is needed, and narrower than its original factory dimension. This is partly why handloads, more than factory loads, show a bulge where the bullet is. I do see that bulge a little on other cartridges too, but it's not as pronounced as on the 9.

I submit that, if you can see a visible bulge where the bullet is, you've got plenty of neck tension. Once again, there is no need to overthink this.

SC_Dave
12-03-2012, 15:11
I am interested in learning proper crimp techniques also. Just for reference this picture is of a pulled factory target load. It's not a great picture but if you look close you can see a faint mark where it was crimped.

http://i282.photobucket.com/albums/kk247/SC_Dave/F33C264B-029D-498E-B0AA-67B282FA1531-1466-000002F1D62E87BD.jpg

The diameter on the case below the bullet was .355. Diameter on the case, on the bullet, but below the mouth was .375. It was .375 on the mouth too. OAL was 1.152.

Don't know if any of this helps anyone or not, just posted for referrence.
David

smokin762
12-03-2012, 15:21
Is it a good idea to use factory loaded ammunition as an example for your reloads? As in gauging the overall length and diameter of the crimped lip of the brass around the bullet. :dunno:

unclebob
12-03-2012, 15:24
OK, the OP's question was concerned with 9mm specifically. Now, the 9mm is not like other autoloading pistol rounds in one respect: the sides of the case are not parallel. Most autoloading cases are a cylinder. The 9mm is slightly tapered. A factory round measures .375 at the case mouth. Just ahead of the extractor groove it measures more like .385.

Now, most of us resize with a carbide die. Carbide dies do the resizing with a fairly narrow ring of carbide. The size of the ring is set to resize the mouth correctly. So, with a tapered case the carbide ring is squeezing the part of the case nearer the head more than is needed, and narrower than its original factory dimension. This is partly why handloads, more than factory loads, show a bulge where the bullet is. I do see that bulge a little on other cartridges too, but it's not as pronounced as on the 9.

I submit that, if you can see a visible bulge where the bullet is, you've got plenty of neck tension. Once again, there is no need to overthink this.
The carbide ring is in the base of the die. A 9mm round is .381 at the mount of the case and .391 in the web area of the case.
Forget measuring factory rounds. If you measure different brands they are not the same and even in the same box a lot of time they donít measure the same. You just want to remove the bell of the case where with a pulled bullet you have a very faint ring or no ring on the bullet.
We are dealing with plated bullets. If you over crimp a plated bullet you start having all kinds of problems. Remember if you over crimp a plated bullet you start sizing the bullet. The bullet will size down and stay there. The brass wants to go back to the size it was before, but only can go back just so far. Just like bending metal you go past the angle you want the metal to be at. So now you a have a sized bullet and destroyed the neck tension that once was before the over crimping.

unclebob
12-03-2012, 15:31
Is it a good idea to use factory loaded ammunition as an example for your reloads? As in gauging the overall length and diameter of the crimped lip of the brass around the bullet. :dunno:

it is not a good idea to use factory rounds as a reference.

dhgeyer
12-03-2012, 16:24
The carbide ring is in the base of the die. A 9mm round is .381 at the mount of the case and .391 in the web area of the case.
Forget measuring factory rounds. If you measure different brands they are not the same and even in the same box a lot of time they donít measure the same. You just want to remove the bell of the case where with a pulled bullet you have a very faint ring or no ring on the bullet.
We are dealing with plated bullets. If you over crimp a plated bullet you start having all kinds of problems. Remember if you over crimp a plated bullet you start sizing the bullet. The bullet will size down and stay there. The brass wants to go back to the size it was before, but only can go back just so far. Just like bending metal you go past the angle you want the metal to be at. So now you a have a sized bullet and destroyed the neck tension that once was before the over crimping.

Well, sir, I beg to differ. I just measured several different brands of factory ammo, several examples of each. About 30 cartridges in all. It's quite consistent. They're all .385" just in front of the extractor groove plus or minus .001". They're all .375" at the case mouth plus or minus .001" I never got anything like .381 and .391. The SAAMI spec is .391 and .380, but no one seems to be manufacturing to that spec. I measured Speer brass and nickle (Gold Dots), Remington, Winchester, and Federal cartridges.

I also measured some of my handloads with plated bullets, and they came out about the same.

Yes, the carbide ring is at the base of the die. So, therefore, it goes almost all the way to the base of the case. That was my point. Thank you.

And where in the World did you get the idea that I was advocating overcrimping. I'm the one that's been saying that all you want to do is remove the bell. The mouth of the case should measure the same as just behind it. That is not overcrimping. That's not crimping at all. No way.

And why on Earth is it a bad idea to use quality, name brand factory ammo as a reference for your reloads, to the extent that it is possible to do so?

fredj338
12-03-2012, 17:45
Now we are talking sematics. :tongueout:

Not really Willy. A properly sized case can still have poor neck tension IF the exspander is too large &/or the brass is thin, or bullet small. Example, I can't run 0.451" jacketed bullets in RP brass, I don't get proper neck tension, the brass is just too thin. There are some small issues with reloading that are not semantics but can mess up your ammo to one degree or another. So I am just trying to keep the noobs straight. For the guys that want to do it wrong after 500K rds, I can't help them.:dunno:

fredj338
12-03-2012, 17:49
Is it a good idea to use factory loaded ammunition as an example for your reloads? As in gauging the overall length and diameter of the crimped lip of the brass around the bullet. :dunno:

Not really, depends on the ammo. I have pulled Fed & WWB 45acp, the bullets are way over crimped. The bullet shanks measure as small as 0.448"!!! Accuracy will be ok up close, inside 21ft, where many, many shooters live, but beyond that, unacceptable for me. So measure facotry is fine, if you want factory results with that exact brass & bullet combo.

dstanley66
12-03-2012, 18:09
I just started to test load some plated bullets that I ordered, so all this info. is a help to me so dont stop talking about plated now.

SBray
12-03-2012, 19:18
Well, let me start off saying, "Thank you to all that have provided so much information!" I know I have benefited from the knowledge of more experienced reloaders, and hopefully others have too.

I have been using the technique given in the 550B manual when setting all the stations, especially the crimping. I start with the cartridge in the holder at the top and lower the die until it touches, and turn it down at approximately 1/8 of a turn until I reach the desired crimp. It seems to me, the best way to reach that desired crimp is to be willing to pull the bullet and examine the bullet for excessive pressure marks, especially when using plated bullets!

When I originally posted this thread, I had gotten in a hurry and did not take the time to do this. I was relying on just measuring and touching the case to determine when I had sufficiently removed enough of the bell.

After reading many of these posts, I realized it was time for me go back to the basics of comparing measurements shown in the SAAMI 9mm bullet diagram.

I found that I had too much bell, which I believe later created problems with the crimping station. I always believed that one should only bell the case so that the bullet barely rests in the mouth opening without chance of scraping the sides of the bullet when loaded. I thought it was unusual that the Dillion instructional video showed the narrator setting the bell as much as he did. The bullet looked to be setting cock-eyed in the mouth. Perhaps that doesn't really matter, I don't know, I am fairly new to all this.

Anyway, I now have produced several cartridges that have the proper bell and crimp. I pulled several of the last bullets when making the final crimp adjustments, and found that the sides of the bullet had no abrasions or rings, yet the bullet was held firmly in place, and easily fit in and out of the case gauge.

I will take them to the range and compare the bullets originally loaded with this last set and compare them for accuracy.

Steve

F106 Fan
12-03-2012, 20:01
I just started to test load some plated bullets that I ordered, so all this info. is a help to me so dont stop talking about plated now.

I think some of us would ask why you are using plated bullets. Unless you got a real deal, they probably aren't cheaper than FMJ from Precision Delta.

The nice thing about jacketed bullets (or hard cast lead for that matter) is that they aren't fragile and, more important to me, there is actual published data. Not some "load somewhere around mid jacketed" kind of thing.

Richard

WeeWilly
12-03-2012, 21:36
Not really Willy. A properly sized case can still have poor neck tension IF the exspander is too large &/or the brass is thin, or bullet small. Example, I can't run 0.451" jacketed bullets in RP brass, I don't get proper neck tension, the brass is just too thin. There are some small issues with reloading that are not semantics but can mess up your ammo to one degree or another. So I am just trying to keep the noobs straight. For the guys that want to do it wrong after 500K rds, I can't help them.:dunno:

The reason it was sematics, or perhaps pedantics, is I never said anything about "proper neck tension". For a given case and bullet, the sizing die sets the neck tension (an expander button, if even present, is part of the sizing), so you see, it wasn't "almost right."

In the spirit of adding extraneous information to the discussion to display our command of the subject matter to those who don't possess our years of experience, I would say you might give one of those U Dies a try on your R-P brass when loading jacketed bullets. Please don't say you already have one to de-Glock your brass... :rofl:

fredj338
12-04-2012, 00:05
The reason it was sematics, or perhaps pedantics, is I never said anything about "proper neck tension". For a given case and bullet, the sizing die sets the neck tension (an expander button, if even present, is part of the sizing), so you see, it wasn't "almost right."

In the spirit of adding extraneous information to the discussion to display our command of the subject matter to those who don't possess our years of experience, I would say you might give one of those U Dies a try on your R-P brass when loading jacketed bullets. Please don't say you already have one to de-Glock your brass... :rofl:

Now you are spinning. Willy. In hangun ammo, the sizing die sizes. The flare or belling die flares, they ar not the same process, so it' not semantics but about proper terminology. SOme noob will think he has it all nailed if he sizes it right. Again, they work in tandum, you can have a perfect sizing die & an oversize expander button & you will not have proper neck tension. Yes, proper is the term, it is what you want. You don't want close or almost or good enough.
Now don't use the button, as I have in some rifle reloading, then the sizing die sets the neck tension. With handguns, the two work in tandem. The OP was talking handgun, so I just want to make sure he understands how all this works.:wavey:

DWARREN123
12-04-2012, 02:30
I crimp just enough to take the bell out of the case mouth and so the cartridge will fit the chamber.
Anything more (in my opinion) just raises pressures.
Just my opinion. :wavey:

smokin762
12-04-2012, 14:58
Not really, depends on the ammo. I have pulled Fed & WWB 45acp, the bullets are way over crimped. The bullet shanks measure as small as 0.448"!!! Accuracy will be ok up close, inside 21ft, where many, many shooters live, but beyond that, unacceptable for me. So measure facotry is fine, if you want factory results with that exact brass & bullet combo.

Thank you for the response.

I have the Lyman and Hornady manuals. Some of the information to me is a little confusing. I am starting out on .45 ACP. I am using Accurate #5 with Hornady 230 gr FMJ.

With the powder and bullet weight I am using, the Hornady manual reads, C.O.L..1.230”

With the powder I am using, the Lyman manual only lists a 225 gr.FMJ Bullet and it reads, C.O.L..1.272” OAL.

I am using mixed brass and the case lengths do vary. I’m not really sure which C.O.L. length to go with. I measured some factory UMC 230 gr FMJ and varied from C.O.L..1.253”- 1.262”.

Do I go with the Hornady manual or do I go with the Lyman manual? Is it safe to split the difference? :dunno:

F106 Fan
12-04-2012, 16:12
Thank you for the response.

I have the Lyman and Hornady manuals. Some of the information to me is a little confusing. I am starting out on .45 ACP. I am using Accurate #5 with Hornady 230 gr FMJ.

With the powder and bullet weight I am using, the Hornady manual reads, C.O.L..1.230”

With the powder I am using, the Lyman manual only lists a 225 gr.FMJ Bullet and it reads, C.O.L..1.272” OAL.

I am using mixed brass and the case lengths do vary. I’m not really sure which C.O.L. length to go with. I measured some factory UMC 230 gr FMJ and varied from C.O.L..1.253”- 1.262”.

Do I go with the Hornady manual or do I go with the Lyman manual? Is it safe to split the difference? :dunno:


You should dance with the one that brought you!

If you are using a bullet that matches the Hornady manual and you are using their load data, it makes sense to use their OAL. Dance with them!

Of couse the Lyman manual will be longer! The bullet is heavier, therefore longer, and they need to maintain case volume.

I load 230 gr LRN and FMJ as well as 200 gr LSWC to 1.250"

You need to be certain that you don't load too short as that will increase pressure. You also need to be certain you don't load too long or a) the rounds won't fit in the magazine or b) the bullet will impact the rifling.

But, when you think about it, what's 0.020"? Hornady says 1.230" and I use 1.250". I doubt there's a whit of difference.

You will also find that Hornady is often VERY conservative when compared to something like Speer #14. No guarantees, of course, but you are unlikely to get an overpressure situation using Hornady data, as published.

Richard

smokin762
12-04-2012, 17:40
You should dance with the one that brought you!

If you are using a bullet that matches the Hornady manual and you are using their load data, it makes sense to use their OAL. Dance with them!

Of couse the Lyman manual will be longer! The bullet is heavier, therefore longer, and they need to maintain case volume.

I load 230 gr LRN and FMJ as well as 200 gr LSWC to 1.250"

You need to be certain that you don't load too short as that will increase pressure. You also need to be certain you don't load too long or a) the rounds won't fit in the magazine or b) the bullet will impact the rifling.

But, when you think about it, what's 0.020"? Hornady says 1.230" and I use 1.250". I doubt there's a whit of difference.

You will also find that Hornady is often VERY conservative when compared to something like Speer #14. No guarantees, of course, but you are unlikely to get an overpressure situation using Hornady data, as published.

Richard

Thank you,

I never heard of the term bullet impacting the rifling. What is that? How do I check for that?:dunno: So much to learn.

SBray
12-04-2012, 17:54
Thank you,

I never heard of the term bullet impacting the rifling. What is that? How do I check for that?:dunno: So much to learn.

It is when the bullet touches the lands of the barrel as it sits in the chamber.

Editted, to "lands", not "landing". Thank you Fred!

fredj338
12-04-2012, 18:12
It is when the bullet touches the landings of the barrel as it sits in the chamber.
Not landing but lands Just trying to help.:wavey:

fredj338
12-04-2012, 18:14
Thank you for the response.

I have the Lyman and Hornady manuals. Some of the information to me is a little confusing. I am starting out on .45 ACP. I am using Accurate #5 with Hornady 230 gr FMJ.

With the powder and bullet weight I am using, the Hornady manual reads, C.O.L..1.230”

With the powder I am using, the Lyman manual only lists a 225 gr.FMJ Bullet and it reads, C.O.L..1.272” OAL.

I am using mixed brass and the case lengths do vary. I’m not really sure which C.O.L. length to go with. I measured some factory UMC 230 gr FMJ and varied from C.O.L..1.253”- 1.262”.

Do I go with the Hornady manual or do I go with the Lyman manual? Is it safe to split the difference? :dunno:

Just keep in mind OAL is ALWAYS bullet & gun specific. So the OAL in any manual is a guide not gosspel. SO make a dummy round, drop it into your removed bbl. If it fits, then try the mag, loaded fully. If it's shorter than the data you are using, you want to approach max carefully, pressures are higher as a handgun bullet seats deeper.
BTW, 0.020" can make a diff in some guns, so always check YOUR bbl. Loads that fit all my 1911s would just come up a bit long for my XD. So now I seat them all 0.020" deeper.

SBray
12-04-2012, 18:18
Thank you,

I never heard of the term bullet impacting the rifling. What is that? How do I check for that?:dunno: So much to learn.

Stoney Point once made an O.A. L. gauge that I used when setting up the overall length of a rifle bullet I was loading in a bolt action rifle. It was a mock-up of a rifle bullet that had a threaded end that their tool screwed into various commonly used rifle cases. A bullet was placed in the mouth of this case, and the whole piece was inserted into the chamber. The user would then slide the plastic rod into the case and push the bullet forward until it touched the lands of the chamber. The user then gently tighten down a set screw and withdrew the unit. The user was then left with a sample of the overall length of the bullet (as it touched the lands) to begin determining what OAL to be setup.

I have attached a photo of one of these gauges.

F106 Fan
12-04-2012, 18:42
Stoney Point once made an O.A. L. gauge that I used when setting up the overall length of a rifle bullet I was loading in a bolt action rifle. It was a mock-up of a rifle bullet that had a threaded end that their tool screwed into various commonly used rifle cases. A bullet was placed in the mouth of this case, and the whole piece was inserted into the chamber. The user would then slide the plastic rod into the case and push the bullet forward until it touched the lands of the chamber. The user then gently tighten down a set screw and withdrew the unit. The user was then left with a sample of the overall length of the bullet (as it touched the lands) to begin determining what OAL to be setup.

I have attached a photo of one of these gauges.

Hornady sells them now

Richard

dhgeyer
12-04-2012, 18:43
It is when the bullet touches the landings of the barrel as it sits in the chamber.

Airplanes have landings. Rifled barrels have lands. And grooves. Except polygonal rifling, which has neither. It has more like, well, sides.

Normally you don't want the bullet to be seated out so far that it contacts the rifling. Rifling doesn't start abruptly at the shoulder of the chamber. It kind of ramps in from the end of the chamber. This part of the barrel is called the throat. That's hard to see with Glock rifling, but you can detect it. If you look at the barrel, out of the gun, from the front against a moderately strong plain light source you see the bore at the muzzle is an octagon. If you turn the barrel around and look at the bore right at the step at the shoulder of the chamber, it's a circle.

In a semi-auto pistol having the bullet protrude into the throat far enough to contact the rifling would be very bad, for two reasons. It would prevent the cartridge from headspacing on the case mouth as it is supposed to do, and it would raise chamber pressure. Such rounds likely wouldn't fit in the magazine anyway. And if they did, they might not feed well.

Back in the day the way you determined how deep to seat bottleneck rifle bullets in an individual rifle was to put a bullet in an empty cartridge that was slightly deformed, just enough to hold the bullet with some tension. You would just insert the bullet in the case a little bit. Then you would chamber the dummy round and extract it. This would give you the overall length if the bullet went to the end of the throat and contacted the rifling. You would then seat your real rounds a bit deeper than that. How far the bullet travels from its seated position in the cartridge until it hits the rifling is called freebore. More freebore yields greater velocity at lower pressures, but is not great for accuracy. Some bench rest shooters insisted that using the original length, where the bullet was slightly engraved by the rifling, improved accuracy. One would have to compensate load data, as this would also raise chamber pressure.

More than anyone wanted to know, I'm sure.

EDIT: How deep to seat a bullet in a semi-auto pistol case is a balancing act between fitting in the magazine, having some, but not excessive freebore, seating deep enough to hold the bullet securely, not seating so deep as to raise chamber pressure, and, finally, finding an overall length that feeds well.

WiskyT
12-04-2012, 18:52
Generally, pistols won't fit a round in the mag that touches the rifling, but not always. Some guns, like CZ 75's are known for having short throats that won't accommodate rounds that will fit in the mag.

dhgeyer
12-04-2012, 19:12
Generally, pistols won't fit a round in the mag that touches the rifling, but not always. Some guns, like CZ 75's are known for having short throats that won't accommodate rounds that will fit in the mag.

Now, my CZ85 Combat won't feed Rem/UMC range ammo. It's too short. The cartridges wind up jammed up against the barrel hood. In experimenting with trying to correct this, I also found that the neck tension on Rem/UMC is not too strong. When I kept using the same rounds to test with, I found they were getting shorter as the bullets were getting beaten back into the cases. I didn't shoot those! Needless to say I use other brands or handloads in the CZ.

SBray
12-04-2012, 20:55
EDIT: How deep to seat a bullet in a semi-auto pistol case is a balancing act between fitting in the magazine, having some, but not excessive freebore, seating deep enough to hold the bullet securely, not seating so deep as to raise chamber pressure, and, finally, finding an overall length that feeds well.

So, how do most people reloading for pistols go about fine tuning the OAL? Obviously it will be different for weights of bullets and powders used. I get the impression that most do not spend so much time setting the OAL like benchrest shooters do.

Colorado4Wheel
12-04-2012, 21:22
Load a round too long. Remove the flare but don't crimp inward. Take your barrel out. Drop it in the barrel. It should not go in all the way. Reduce OAL about .010" at a time on that round till it goes THUNK when you drop it in the barrel. That is your MAX oal length for that bullet and your barrel.

dhgeyer
12-05-2012, 06:13
So, how do most people reloading for pistols go about fine tuning the OAL? Obviously it will be different for weights of bullets and powders used. I get the impression that most do not spend so much time setting the OAL like benchrest shooters do.

Well, fortunately it's a balancing act but not rocket science. I think the guy who asked the question (thread hijack) in the first place was on the right track. Look at a couple of different sources and compare them. What I do when I'm trying to establish an OAL for, round nose bullets as an example, is look at factory loaded rounds of the same bullet weight. I look for a nose shape that is as close as possible to the bullets I want to load. There's quite a variation in different brands. WWB, with a fairly pointy nose, measures 1.168" if I remember correctly. Rem/UMC is more in the 1.120" range, but the bullet nose is a lot blunter. So, as I say, I check the manuals, look at some factory rounds with similar bullets and arrive at a length to test. I'm not starting out with the max load anyway (closer to the min), so if I'm too deep (short) it won't hurt the gun. I do the drop in the chamber test, check feeding, shoot a few to see how they are, and go from there.

As long as you're not way off I don't think you will have a problem.

fredj338
12-05-2012, 09:21
Generally, pistols won't fit a round in the mag that touches the rifling, but not always. Some guns, like CZ 75's are known for having short throats that won't accommodate rounds that will fit in the mag.

SAme for the XD line. It's why OAL can NOT be take from a book as gospel.

njl
12-05-2012, 09:24
Generally, pistols won't fit a round in the mag that touches the rifling, but not always. Some guns, like CZ 75's are known for having short throats that won't accommodate rounds that will fit in the mag.

That depends a great deal on bullet profile. The longer the bearing surface, the greater the odds of it hitting the rifling before being too long for the mags.

smokin762
12-05-2012, 18:39
Sorry for the hijack guys and thank you for the replies.:embarassed:

I decided to take the advice of loading some dummy rounds. To me, it made sense. Since the Hornady manual states C.O.L.: 1.230Ē and the Lyman manual states C.O.L.: 1.272Ē. I went with the C.O.L. of the UMC factory loaded ammunition. That is C.O.L.: 1.253Ē. I wanted to see the results of splitting the difference.

I removed the barrels from my Glock G30 and G36. I inserted a clean empty piece of brass into the chamber and looked down the barrel for a reference point. I then inserted the factory UMC round into the chamber. I was able to see past the bullet and see the edge of the brass. I repeated this step with the dummy rounds. I was still able the see the edge of the brass case in the chamber.

Next, I used calipers to measure how much of the case was protruding from the chamber end of the barrel. My dummy rounds measured the same as the factory ammunition. I then, loaded some rounds into a magazine from each gun. I then manually worked back the slides and let it go forward on its own looking for any problems. Each round chambered and ejected smoothly without any binding.

fredj338
12-05-2012, 20:02
^^THIS^^^ More guys should learn this proper methode for determinging the correct OAL for their guns. BTW< the LYman OAL is SAAMI max, not necessarily what they used. Very few bullet & gun combos will accept 1.272" OAL.

dhgeyer
12-05-2012, 20:06
Sorry for the hijack guys and thank you for the replies.:embarassed:

I decided to take the advice of loading some dummy rounds. To me, it made sense. Since the Hornady manual states C.O.L.: 1.230” and the Lyman manual states C.O.L.: 1.272”. I went with the C.O.L. of the UMC factory loaded ammunition. That is C.O.L.: 1.253”. I wanted to see the results of splitting the difference.

I removed the barrels from my Glock G30 and G36. I inserted a clean empty piece of brass into the chamber and looked down the barrel for a reference point. I then inserted the factory UMC round into the chamber. I was able to see past the bullet and see the edge of the brass. I repeated this step with the dummy rounds. I was still able the see the edge of the brass case in the chamber.

Next, I used calipers to measure how much of the case was protruding from the chamber end of the barrel. My dummy rounds measured the same as the factory ammunition. I then, loaded some rounds into a magazine from each gun. I then manually worked back the slides and let it go forward on its own looking for any problems. Each round chambered and ejected smoothly without any binding.

Yeah, that'll work. The acid test is to shoot a few. If they shoot well, I'd say you can declare victory. You can spend time playing with it a few thousandths at a time to see if you get any better accuracy. In a rifle that would make sense. In a pistol, unless you're doing some extreme accuracy shooting, I doubt you'd see any noticeable improvement. Playing with the powder charge would probably be more productive, though. That can make a big difference.

Oh, and don't worry too much about the thread hijack. Seems like most of them get hijacked. I probably shouldn't have even mentioned it.

smokin762
12-06-2012, 12:22
Tonight Iíll load a box of 50 rounds at my adjustments. I am taking a half day at work tomorrow to burn up some vacation time and then Iíll be heading to the range to check my reloads.

This may sound corny but should I start a thread with pics of my target and what load I went with? :dunno:

fredj338
12-06-2012, 12:57
Tonight I’ll load a box of 50 rounds at my adjustments. I am taking a half day at work tomorrow to burn up some vacation time and then I’ll be heading to the range to check my reloads.

This may sound corny but should I start a thread with pics of my target and what load I went with? :dunno:

Target pics are always fun, just remember to post the distance. I see a lot of targets & guys think they are shooting really well, then tell you the targets are at 7yds. No one seriously tests accuracy at any distance shorter than 50ft. A crappy gun & crappy ammo will shoot into on ragged hole @ 21ft w/ a good shooter.:dunno:

smokin762
12-06-2012, 13:28
Target pics are always fun, just remember to post the distance. I see a lot of targets & guys think they are shooting really well, then tell you the targets are at 7yds. No one seriously tests accuracy at any distance shorter than 50ft. A crappy gun & crappy ammo will shoot into on ragged hole @ 21ft w/ a good shooter.:dunno:


I'll test my load at 25 yards.

fredj338
12-06-2012, 14:55
I'll test my load at 25 yards.

An even better test of gun & ammo, as well as shooter. When I had younger eyes, I would shoot all my test groups @ 25yds for service guns. Now I have dropped back to 50ft, just easier to see things. I do still shoot the hunting guns all the way out to 100yds, but diff tool for diff task.

SARDG
12-06-2012, 16:02
...I see a lot of targets & guys think they are shooting really well, then tell you the targets are at 7yds. No one seriously tests accuracy at any distance shorter than 50ft. A crappy gun & crappy ammo will shoot into on ragged hole @ 21ft w/ a good shooter.:dunno:
Accuracy for me is based on action-pistol, which is loosely based on SD. A fist-sized group, offhand, at 35 yds (max IDPA) is darn good to me. Some days I achieve it - my ammo always does.

WiskyT
12-06-2012, 16:21
Target pics are always fun, just remember to post the distance. I see a lot of targets & guys think they are shooting really well, then tell you the targets are at 7yds. No one seriously tests accuracy at any distance shorter than 50ft. A crappy gun & crappy ammo will shoot into on ragged hole @ 21ft w/ a good shooter.:dunno:

I love the "one ragged hole" description people use. They fire 300 rounds at a target and call it "one ragged hole". The hole is 12" across, but it's "one ragged hole".:rofl:

fredj338
12-07-2012, 13:26
I love the "one ragged hole" description people use. They fire 300 rounds at a target and call it "one ragged hole". The hole is 12" across, but it's "one ragged hole".:rofl:

True, but I am talking one hole, maybe a 25c piece could cover. Accuracy @ 21ft is an oximoron IMO, because most guns & ammo will shoot into a 25c peice group @ 21ft for a decent shooter. It's why testing ammo @ that distance is pointless. Yes, one ragged hole can be fist size, but too many can't believe you can shoot small groups like that @ 21ft w/ a service gun.
Accuracy for me is based on action-pistol, which is loosely based on SD. A fist-sized group, offhand, at 35 yds (max IDPA) is darn good to me. Some days I achieve it - my ammo always does.
Yep, practical accuracy vs mechanical accuracy. Most would not test ammo offhand @ any distance. I'm all for being able to hit the 8" IDPA sweet spot out to 40yds, about as far as one is likey to shoot a service handgun. Still, it's nice to play @ longer distance so if you have to, you can actually hit things. I used to shoot a lot of met sil, out to 220yds, open sights. I still shoot my service guns out to 100yds on occasion just to remind myself of the sight pic needed to get a hit on a man size target. Not much of a challenge to break clay targets @ 50yds w/ decent ammo in a service gun. One just never knows.:dunno:

Zombie Steve
12-07-2012, 17:46
I get great neck tension and barely crimp at all.

http://i183.photobucket.com/albums/x214/sbecht/NeckTension.jpg





:whistling:

Colorado4Wheel
12-07-2012, 19:01
case gauge it and shoot it.