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Old 02-13-2009, 07:17   #1
OdinIII
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New competitor questions about IDPA reloading

Hello

This year I plan to compete in more IDPA and bowling pin matches. I've got a 19,23 and 27. I would like to get a longer sight radius and my plan was to buy a 17 and 34 but they are hard to find right now. I have found several 22s and 35s. I'm thinking I should just the 40s and start reloading.

I've borrowed a 17 and the lower recoil than my 23 is very noticeable. I've done tons of reading but seem to only get pieces of answers. I would love to get your opinion on several questions.

1. How do you tell when it is time to trash your brass?
2. How many competition reloads do you get from 9mm vs 40 brass?
3. Many places I shoot my brass is bound to end up mixed up with other shooters or lost. Do you maintain a batch of hundreds of rounds and once this gets down to 100 or so throw the whole batch out? I envision every outing with say 100 rounds either gaining or losing quite a few cases. This seem like you would not want to maintain 50 or 100 round batches like I do with rifles.
4. Can I really make the 40 recoil like the 9?
5. Since most folks use the 9 should I just wait until they are available in my area?

I've loaded thousands of precision rifle rounds so I'm pretty familiar with the process although I will have to buy a press that does more than one process at time.

Thanks for you time.

Last edited by OdinIII; 02-13-2009 at 07:53..
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Old 02-13-2009, 07:38   #2
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Originally Posted by RTownsend View Post
Hello

This year I plan to compete in more IDPA and bowling pin matches. I've got a 19,23 and 27. I would like to get a longer sight radius and my plan was to buy a 17 and 34 but they are hard to find right now. I have found several 22s and 35s. I'm thinking I may should just the the 40s and start reloading.

I've borrowed a 17 and the lower recoil than my 23 is very noticeable. I've done tons of reading but seem to only get pieces of answers. I would love to get your opinion on several questions.

1. How do you tell when it is time to trash your brass?
2. How many competition reloads do you get from 9mm vs 40 brass?
3. Many places I shoot my brass is bound to end up mixed up with other shooters or lost. Do you maintain a batch of hundreds of rounds and once this gets down to 100 or so throw the whole batch out? I envision every outing with say 100 rounds either gaining or losing quite a few cases. This seem like you would not want to maintain 50 or 100 round batches like I do with rifles.
4. Can I really make the 40 recoil like the 9?
5. Since most folks use the 9 should I just wait until they are available in my area?

I've loaded thousands of precision rifle rounds so I'm pretty familiar with the process although I will have to buy a press that does more than one process at time.

Thanks for you time.
1) When it splits or the primer pockets are loose.
2) I have no clue. It's a lot.
3) You can mark your brass with a pen on the base. As long as the others is factory you can mix it in with your batch. I try to avoid any brass that is shoot 9 Major or some hotrod trying to make a .40 into a 10mm.
4) IDPA is a Power Factor (PF) game. To make PF you need a 125,000PF. "Bullet weight X velocity = PF". 124 gr needs 1008fps, 147 gr needs 850, 180 gr needs 695, 200gr needs 625 fps. A 200gr bullet going 625 fps is very mild. Needs a reduced powder recoil spring. And you can actually see it on the way to the target.
5) Shoot what you got. Never wait. It's the "indian not the arrow".

As aside on questions 1-3 the reason you can get so many loadings out of the brass is because you are not loading to any high pressure. Shooting minor is very easy on the brass. Only exception to the above is the older glock .40 did have less barrel support. The new are not like that. I would consider a upgrade to a new Glock barrel if you are in that boat. But you could try your barrel and see. I don't like LW barrels.
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Old 02-13-2009, 07:56   #3
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Thanks for the reply.

It seems like if I reload the 9 loses most if not all of its advantages.

If reference to #5, Thanks to the 19 I haven't been waiting, I just want a new bow.
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:00   #4
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9 is still much cheaper to reload then the .40. I have started using 124gr bullets in my 9mm because they are cheaper and it's not that big a difference loaded to PF between them and the 147gr. Plus, the 124gr are a little faster recoiling. Seem (just started with the 124) to work well with my grip and getting back on target fast. It's hard to describe honestly.
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:15   #5
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I guess I already knew the 9 was the correct answer.

One thing in life keeps proving itself to me. If everyone is using a particular item (like the 17 or 34 )then there is good reason even if something else seems superior to me.
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Old 02-13-2009, 08:25   #6
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Originally Posted by RTownsend View Post
This year I plan to compete in more IDPA and bowling pin matches. I've got a 19,23 and 27. I would like to get a longer sight radius and...
Just remember that IDPA has barrel length restrictions, etc.

http://www.necpl.com/

See the IDPA Rulebook link in the left column.

Good luck.
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Old 02-13-2009, 10:27   #7
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Originally Posted by Colorado4Wheel View Post
1) When it splits or the primer pockets are loose.
2) I have no clue. It's a lot.
3) You can mark your brass with a pen on the base. As long as the others is factory you can mix it in with your batch. I try to avoid any brass that is shoot 9 Major or some hotrod trying to make a .40 into a 10mm.
4) IDPA is a Power Factor (PF) game. To make PF you need a 125,000PF. "Bullet weight X velocity = PF". 124 gr needs 1008fps, 147 gr needs 850, 180 gr needs 695, 200gr needs 625 fps. A 200gr bullet going 625 fps is very mild. Needs a reduced powder recoil spring. And you can actually see it on the way to the target.
5) Shoot what you got. Never wait. It's the "indian not the arrow".

As aside on questions 1-3 the reason you can get so many loadings out of the brass is because you are not loading to any high pressure. Shooting minor is very easy on the brass. Only exception to the above is the older glock .40 did have less barrel support. The new are not like that. I would consider a upgrade to a new Glock barrel if you are in that boat. But you could try your barrel and see. I don't like LW barrels.
Where did you verify that the newer Glock .40 barrels offer more support?
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Old 02-13-2009, 11:46   #8
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Maybe you will save a $1.00 a box on 9mm reloads compared to .40's, but that takes a lot of boxes to offset the price of a $550-$600 gun. Not that it's not fun burning up all that ammo and owning as many guns as you can, but just a budget consideration.

Also if you load the .40 down to a 130 pf you will find it is a real kittycat load to shoot. IMHO it recoils less than a 9mm at 125 pf. Now you may have to reduce your recoil spring a wee bit, but that's a small price compared to the price of all the new 9mm stuff you'll need.
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Old 02-13-2009, 12:31   #9
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Maybe you will save a $1.00 a box on 9mm reloads compared to .40's, but that takes a lot of boxes to offset the price of a $550-$600 gun. Not that it's not fun burning up all that ammo and owning as many guns as you can, but just a budget consideration.

Also if you load the .40 down to a 130 pf you will find it is a real kittycat load to shoot. IMHO it recoils less than a 9mm at 125 pf. Now you may have to reduce your recoil spring a wee bit, but that's a small price compared to the price of all the new 9mm stuff you'll need.
I agree, I wouldn't buy a 9mm to offset the cost of 40 ammo, just doesn't pan out for the reloader. You can load all service pistol brass fro almost ever, if not loading max. IMO, no, you can NOT make a 40 as soft a ahooter as a 9mm. It's physics, just not gonna happen. Can you get a 40 to be soft shooting, sure, but not as soft as 9mm. A 165gr bullet @ 850fps is pretty soft shooting, sim to a 147gr 9mm @ 900fps. Neither make major though.
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Old 02-13-2009, 12:49   #10
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Another thought here is to forget about getting your own brass back. It's really a non-issue. I pick-up what ever brass I find. Then before cleaning, I inspect for neck splits or bulges near the base. If it looks good it get's cleaned and reloaded.

For any action pistol reloading we are not talking about 1" accuracy at 50 yds. So as long as the brass is in good condition it gets reloaded - regardless of brand. I've used this method for 15 years without a problem.

** Have brass magnet - will travel **
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Old 02-13-2009, 14:02   #11
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Thanks for the replies,

The last two posts really help with the mindset to approach action pistol reloading. I just couldn't understand how to go from knowing exactly what kind of life my precision rifle brass have had to sweeping or picking up brass off the range floor and knowing some of it was not mine and that I missed several of mine.

I was going to purchase new guns anyway. I just can't find G34's or G17's yet although it sounds like they are getting easier to find. Since several shops have the G22 and G35 in stock I thought I may go with the .40 since the bigger bullet appeals to my desire to have the biggest.

I've been using the G19 with WWB ammo for years (I sometimes use the G23 for the bowling pin matches) and recently borrowed a 17 and the larger grip and longer sight radius seems to make everything slightly easier to do. Since they may not be available with full cap. mags much longer I thought now is the time to buy more.
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Old 02-13-2009, 14:31   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RTownsend View Post
Hello

This year I plan to compete in more IDPA and bowling pin matches. I've got a 19,23 and 27. I would like to get a longer sight radius and my plan was to buy a 17 and 34 but they are hard to find right now. I have found several 22s and 35s. I'm thinking I should just the 40s and start reloading.

I've borrowed a 17 and the lower recoil than my 23 is very noticeable. I've done tons of reading but seem to only get pieces of answers. I would love to get your opinion on several questions.

1. How do you tell when it is time to trash your brass?
2. How many competition reloads do you get from 9mm vs 40 brass?
3. Many places I shoot my brass is bound to end up mixed up with other shooters or lost. Do you maintain a batch of hundreds of rounds and once this gets down to 100 or so throw the whole batch out? I envision every outing with say 100 rounds either gaining or losing quite a few cases. This seem like you would not want to maintain 50 or 100 round batches like I do with rifles.
4. Can I really make the 40 recoil like the 9?
5. Since most folks use the 9 should I just wait until they are available in my area?

I've loaded thousands of precision rifle rounds so I'm pretty familiar with the process although I will have to buy a press that does more than one process at time.

Thanks for you time.
One thing to note, having shot both, is that a Bowling pin load is a VERY different beast from an "Action Match" load. Generally speaking, in Action matches, the reloader attempts to have a load that is as close to the power floor for his division (125 or 165) and still have a margin of safety to account for range conditions, temprature, etc. Usually you see minor shooters shooting for something in the range of 128 - 132, and major shooters running at 167 - 170.

In bowling pins, you usually see folks running a heavy bullet as hard as they can drive it. Power Factors in the 220's and 230's are common. .45 has a pretty clear advantage, clear enough that most competetive shooters are using it for pins. Even if you shoot pins informally, not according to IPSA standards (do they even exist any more?) the most competetive gun / ammo combinations are going to be heavy bullets loaded hot, as opposed to lighter fodder. Most pin shooters are also using semiwadcutters or HP's as well, to maximize energy transfer to the pin, where in the action games that doesn't matter a bit.

To answer your other questions...

1: Splits or loose pockets are a guaranteed trashing. with .40 and glocks I look at the "bulge" too, and its all experience to know when enough is enough. However "competetion" reloads, if you're not trying to make major with a 9 or crap like that, are generally loaded well down from maximum, and don't stress the brass a great deal

2: So many I can't count. I inspect brass with service caliber handguns, not count loads on a particular lot. Plus, I gain brass and lose it so fast that tracking brass by lot would be a NIGHTMARE. but I'm SURE that I have .45 and 9mm brass that has had 40+ loads on some cases (winchester military that dates to the mid - late 80's and has been used continuously since)

3: I load PILES of service caliber loads. So many that I store them in zip-lock bags in 5 gallon buckets. I throw a paper in the bag with the "lot data" on it, the powder, bullet, primer, lot numbers for stuff with lot numbers on it, and the date I loaded it. That's all the tracking I do.

4: Yes. You can make very light recoiling .40's, and if you want to make major without headaches, .40 is more versatile (and is the minimum caliber for major in some classes, most of those classes Glock isn't particularly competetive, but its out there)

5: No reason to wait for 9 if you don't want to. I think right now you can save more than $1 a box with the right load over .40, but its not $2 either. so on one hand that's alot of boxes of ammo, but on the other hand it isn't really either. if you get into the action games alot, its no problem to blast through 1000 rounds a month in 3 weekend matches that you run through a couple times each. That's easily 6 - 10K rounds a year which is the equivalent of 120 - 200 boxes of ammo. its almost another Glock at $2 per box, and that's just year 1. I wouldn't make a shift solely on economics, but they can be there if you want them to be.
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Old 02-13-2009, 14:54   #13
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Thanks for the very detailed response Degoogman

The pin matches I shoot are pretty informal, only timed with a stop watch. Although the G23 hits with more authority I still usually use the G19 because of Factory ammo cost. I haven't really thought about not having to be distracted by pins falling on the table if I had a more powerful round. They usually still fall off with one shot just not a fast as when hit with the .40.
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Old 02-13-2009, 15:58   #14
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Originally Posted by CTSixshot View Post
Just remember that IDPA has barrel length restrictions, etc.

http://www.necpl.com/

See the IDPA Rulebook link in the left column.

Good luck.
Which don't apply to the G17 or G34 the OP indicated that he was interested in.

In point of fact, IDPA doesn't have "barrel length restrictions" on semi-autos; it has a maximum overall size limitation. The pistol must fit in the IDPA "box." The G17 and G34 do.
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Old 01-13-2010, 22:57   #15
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Another thought here is to forget about getting your own brass back. It's really a non-issue. I pick-up what ever brass I find. Then before cleaning, I inspect for neck splits or bulges near the base. If it looks good it get's cleaned and reloaded.

For any action pistol reloading we are not talking about 1" accuracy at 50 yds. So as long as the brass is in good condition it gets reloaded - regardless of brand. I've used this method for 15 years without a problem.

** Have brass magnet - will travel **
Amen. My Hornady manual has a section on the effects of all the variables when reloading. With HP rifle different brass can make a HUGE difference but we are talking IDPA shooting here. Lower pressure, lower recoiling loads and accuracy are not big issues. With my loads, my guns are always more accurate than I can shoot them for IDPA type stuff.
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Old 01-14-2010, 05:05   #16
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Amen. My Hornady manual has a section on the effects of all the variables when reloading. With HP rifle different brass can make a HUGE difference but we are talking IDPA shooting here. Lower pressure, lower recoiling loads and accuracy are not big issues. With my loads, my guns are always more accurate than I can shoot them for IDPA type stuff.

This is the SECOND thread you've "woke back up", that was a year old?

Simply having something to say about an old topic, is generally considered uncool....
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