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Old June 17, 2002, 10:18 PM   #1
brianidaho
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tipping bullets??

I'm a newbe here, this is probably pretty obvious to you guys with some experience. I have just started loading for the .45 acp, and have had major feeding problems with my first batch of reloads. Upon closer examination, I noticed that some the failing rounds exhibit slight tipping of the bullets in the case, resulting in the bullet dragging in the chamber/forcing cone. The bullets are Hornady 185 grain semi-wad cutters, in a RCBS Pro 2000 press, RCBS carbide 3-die set. I'm guessing that I am not expanding the case mouth sufficiently in the second station, but would like some feedback on this theory. I have only loaded for the .40 before, and not with semi-wad cutters, and have never had this problem.

Any advice is much appreciated.

Bri
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Old June 18, 2002, 02:50 AM   #2
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A couple of questions for you...

What OAL are you loading to?
Is your brass buckling?
Are you full-length sizing the brass?
Is the seater plug the proper one for SWC bullets?
Is it one particular brand of brass?

Answer those questions, and we might be able to help you out...
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Old June 18, 2002, 07:59 AM   #3
brianidaho
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I'm loading to an overall length of 1.275. I have the Speer manual, this is what they recommend for what appears to be a similar bullet design. Wondering if I should go shorter? I don't have Hornady's manual.

The sizing die is adjusted per the manual (just barely in contact with the shell plate), so I believe this is full length resizing. So far I am only using 1 brand of brass, Federal once fired (American Eagle), with no buckling.

I seem to be seeing the same problem with both of the seating plugs in my die set. I have played with varying degrees of crimp, with no noticable change.

Thanks for the reply.

Bri
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Old June 18, 2002, 08:54 AM   #4
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Get a Lee Factory Crimping Die for about $20.00.

It full-length re-sizes the FINISHED ammo, and applies a light crimp to the bullet/case seam.

If you're placing the bullets in the case a little crooked - which is easy to do with .45 ACP - the Lee FCD will re-arrange everything so that it will feed and shoot perfectly.

I use them in .45 ACP, 9mm, .38/.357. Handy as a pocket on a shirt.
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Old June 18, 2002, 09:59 AM   #5
sricciardelli
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Change your OAL to 1.230"

Just use enough taper crimp to ensure that the bullet is going nowhere on recoil.
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Old June 18, 2002, 10:37 AM   #6
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OAL

I hate to tell you guys, but the recommended OAL for 185 gr SWCs is 1.135". Seat 'em out to recommended hardball length, and the gun will not go into battery because the shoulder on the bullet is jammed into the rifling.

And here's another thing. CRIMP HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH PREVENTING BULLET SETBACK IN .45 ACP. The bullet is held in place by the RESIZED case. The case is more elastic than the bullet, therefore putting a hard crimp on the case will deform the bullet while the case will spring back, leaving LESS grip on the bullet.
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Old June 18, 2002, 03:46 PM   #7
sricciardelli
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"I hate to tell you guys, but the recommended OAL for 185 gr SWCs is 1.135". "

Well, let's see now...

Hornady disagrees with you, they claim 1.230...
Speer disagrees with you, they claim 1.275...
Nosler disagrees with you...blah...
Sierra disagrees with you...blah...blah...

and Lyman agrees with you, they claim 1.135...

So...my friend, before you go around telling everyone they are wrong, check more than one source...

And I don't recall anyone suggesting a hrd crimp...
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Old June 18, 2002, 10:57 PM   #8
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Thanks for the feedback, especially the info from the Hornady manual. I'll shorten the OAL and see what happens. I did edge down to 1.260 and things seemed to be improving, but was leary of going too far. Interesting to see a .140 difference in recommended OAL for similar bullet styles and the same weight bullet. Lots to learn.

Back to the press.

Bri
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Old June 18, 2002, 11:58 PM   #9
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"Lots to learn."

Don't forget to make the learning an enjoyable process...

Each component is an individual, just as each red-headded woman is a different individual...
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Old June 19, 2002, 08:06 AM   #10
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What's correct?

I do believe that I said "recommended." And I WOULD like to see someone get a Remington or Winchester 185 gr. FMJ SWC to go int battery with an OAL of 1.275"!

I'v been fighting that battle myself. For my Wilson barreled GM, I load Winchester's 185 gr. FMJ SWC to 1.180". Works fine in my gun, but it won't work in my friend's Springfield! Her 1911A1 won't go into battery until the case length is reduced to 1.160". The shoulder of the bullet seats in the throat of the chamber and won't allow the slide to close.

BUT there's another problem. With the OAL reduced to 1.160", the round is to short to feed reliably. Go Figure!

We're going to try a 200 gr, Pb SWC next, because it has a long nose to guide the bullet up the feed ramp.
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Old June 19, 2002, 12:11 PM   #11
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Hornady recommends seating the #4513 185 gr. SWC to 1.194". Hornady #4, page 630. I've got some here seated to 1.190" and they feed in my old 1911A1.

Pull your barrel and use it for a gauge. Seat the bullet so the base of the case is flush with the barrel hood. If it doesn't feed either you have a magazine lip problem or you need a different bullet. The Kuhnhasen manual has instructions for adjusting the magazine lips to the load.

Bye
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Old June 19, 2002, 03:26 PM   #12
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Adjusting Magazine Lips

Just WHAT does the "Kuhnhasen manual" say about
adjusting magazine lips to cure feeding problems.

I'd like to know without having to buy the whole book.

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Old June 19, 2002, 03:45 PM   #13
sricciardelli
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"Hornady recommends seating the #4513 185 gr. SWC to 1.194"."

Well, you better take a look at Hornady's #5 manual...it states, 1.230"...

You gotta remember that just because several bullets are the same type and weight, DOES NOT MEAN THEY ARE THE SAME BULLETS.

When looking for OAL, it is always best to start with the LATEST issue of the bullet manufacturer's manual...

Production methods change, designs change...


(By the way, Winchester recommend an OAL of 1.275 with all theri .45ACP bullets, jacketed that is.)
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Old June 20, 2002, 12:08 AM   #14
brianidaho
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OK, back from another turn at the press, and still frustrated. I adjusted the bullet seating plug so that I have an OAL of 1.230, and am still encountering the problem (failure to feed). In doing so I am attempting to press the bullets deeper into cases that are already crimped, so that may be my problem. I went down further, to 1.205, just to see what happens, with no success. It appears that the bullets are tipped slightly and are catching at the forward edge of the chamber, where the case headspaces. Marking on the bullet is obvious. I need to try loading some rounds to 1.230 "from scratch" and see if things work any better.

FWIW, the crimp die is adjusted for a crimp of .471 at the case mouth. Some of these rounds feed and chamber fine, I think I'll shoot them and pull the bullets on the others. I am getting jacket shaving in attempting to set the bullets back on the crimped case. I only have 200 of these bullets, I think I'll go back to regular ball ammo for my next attempt.

I'm having fun learning, but getting a bit frustrated here.

Bri
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Old June 20, 2002, 07:34 AM   #15
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FTF

Failure to Feed can be caused by several problems. First, try other magazines, especially other brands of mags.

You're right, OAL can be critical.

Have you had the feed ramp polished, and the chamber "throated" and polished?

1911s are like Harleys! Their character lies in their imperfections, and the many wonderful things that you can do to correct those imperfections. That's why they're each an individual!
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Old June 20, 2002, 08:31 AM   #16
Norm Lee
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Tipping bullets, OAL etc

Hey Bri:

If you are still having trouble, here's something you could try. It has worked for me for every shape and size of .45 cal bullet I've loaded for my 1911.

You will need some (Ok at least one) .45ACP 230 gr ball ammo which is known to feed in your gun. I use WW white box. Back off your crimp die so it doesn't interfere with seating. Using your round nose seating stem, back it out as well so that it cant contact the bullet in your loaded commercial round. Put said round in shell holder and raise the ram all the way. Now screw the seating stem down to make contact with the bullet nose. Lock this adjustment in and use it for all your .45 ACP bullet seating tasks. Crimp in a separate operation.

The reason this almost always works is that is a reasonable attempt to time first contact with the feed ramp to be the same for your other loads as it is for the design case 230 gr. ball.

Cheers,

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Old June 20, 2002, 08:41 AM   #17
renaissance7697
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For Brianidaho

You said:
"am still encountering the problem (failure to feed). In doing so I am attempting to press the bullets deeper into cases that are already crimped, so that may be my problem. "

Definitely!

Trying to seat bullets deeper after being already crimped; will "crumple" the case 9 out of 10 times.

I load 45acp with semi Wad Cutters; both Hard Cast Lead and Copper Plated.
This is what works for me:

Don't worry so much about OAL as long as it is within Maximum Overall length as given in the specs for .45acp.

Concentrate on leaving "just a little" (~1/32") of the shoulder showing above the case mouth after seating.
This keeping the shoulder of the SWC ABOVE the case mouth "cushions" the outer edge of the case mouth rim from catching on the ramp/chamber )

Be SURE you are using a "Taper Crimp" crimping die.

My adjusting proceedure:
1. Size Full length

2. Flare to the "minimum" which will allow starting
the bullet easily(Bevel Based Bullets help in this matter)

3. Back the crimp portion of Seating/crimping die all the way out

4. Start a bullet and adjust bullet seating plug to seat a bullet to the ideal 1/32" shoulder

5. Seat a Bullet with this adjustment for test.

6. Back the seating plug all the way out

7. Adjust the crimping die down on the test bullet just enough to remove All the flare, not much more (measure sized case before crimping and ensure that you return case to the same diameter)

8. Lock the crimp portion of the die.

9. Snug the bullet seating plug down on the previously seated bullet (finger tight)

10. Lock the seating plug

This should do it!

note:
If you still get the case mouth rim/edge catching on something; adjust the crimp in step 7 above down just a tad more, to take the sharp edge off of the case mouth rim.
****************************
Another Way
(and this works quite well for just about ANY shape/weight Bullet)

Subsitute for steps 7, 8, and 9; above; the following:

Take a GOOD QUALITY factory .45 round and place it in your seating/crimping station.

>>>> USE A 230 grain Round Nosed Jacketed type ("HardBall")

Adjust the Crimp and bullet seating plug "finger tight / snug" down on this factory round (first the crimp and then the seating depth)

Lock it!

This creates a round which best "fits" within the "envelope" for which the .45 acp cartridge shape was designed.

As long as this leaves (in the case of a SWC) at least the desired 1/32" shoulder, you should be good.

****************************************
Lastly:
If all else fails.....
As some mentioned already
" The Lee Factory Crimp Die ".

Build the bullet as best you can
THEN
Take the completed round and run it through the Lee.
The Lee "Full Length Resizes" the finished round.
(Full Length resizing avoids the crumple effect)
A perfect fit every time!
If there was any crumple, this will fix it.
**************************************
PS:
SIG 245's don't like Semi Wad Cutters, no matter How good they are built.
All my other 45's eat them just fine!

let me know how it turns out.

renaissance
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Old June 24, 2002, 11:09 AM   #18
brianidaho
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Concentrate on leaving "just a little" (~1/32") of the shoulder showing above the case mouth after seating.
This keeping the shoulder of the SWC ABOVE the case mouth "cushions" the outer edge of the case mouth rim from catching on the ramp/chamber )


I suspect this will do what I need, since the radius of the SWC design will be able to "blend" to the case mouth. However, this will result in OAL considerably below that recommended in the Hornady manual. I'm new here-how much will that effect pressures? I'm thinking I'll take some of my rounds that will feed and shorten the OAL .020 or so at a time and look for signs of overpressure.

[B]Be SURE you are using a "Taper Crimp" crimping die. [\B]

Got that one covered.
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Old June 25, 2002, 09:00 AM   #19
renaissance7697
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For BrianIdaho

Bullet/Powder Manufacturer's recommended OAL is only a way of defining "INDIRECTLY" the resultant "combustion space/volume" left in the assembled round.

The Standard Cartridge Specs give a MAXIMUM for feeding, and a gun manufacturer (Kimber for one does) may give a "suggested" OAL for reliable feeding in THEIR Gun.

The Bullet/Powder Manufacturers OAL is only accurate in assuring the velocity and pressure developed in the round when using the EXACT BULLET for which the OAL is given.
The slightest variation in bullet shape (as is unavoidable when going from one bullet manufacturer to another) will result in a different resultant "combustion volume" for an assembled round.

It is the mainly the "combustion space" that determines the pressure developed. (with some variation due to bullet composition, gun bore etc).

I have done the math and could send it to you, but as my friend "Steve" counseled me; there is no real need to "overthink" the problem.

If you avoid "extreme" charges (either High OR Low) you are not likely to get in trouble with KBs by varying the OAL.

Reliable feeding is your main goal, and for any given gun, there is a range of OAL that for any given bullet shape; gives the desired result.

You no doubt know that traditional "Round Nosed" is what most guns (with the exception of course of the .38 Wadcutter as in the SW 52-2) like best
and
The tactic (which I mentioned in a previous post) of settin up seat and crimp dies for Round Nosed and then seating the bullet shape of your choice with that setting has worked pretty well for me.
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Old June 27, 2002, 11:01 PM   #20
brianidaho
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Thanks for all the input on this, I finally have a load (OAL) that feeds well and shows no signs of excessive pressure.

Renaissance, your advise as follows:

"Concentrate on leaving "just a little" (~1/32") of the shoulder showing above the case mouth after seating.
This keeping the shoulder of the SWC ABOVE the case mouth "cushions" the outer edge of the case mouth rim from catching on the ramp/chamber ) "

Saved the day! I have loaded the rounds this way, results in a OAL of 1.150, and seems to feed well. I just bought 500 lead SWC's, I'll work towards the same approach. I'm having a lot of fun with reloading, just a bit tentative on pushing the envelope in any way.

Thanks again.
Bri
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