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Old March 15, 2011, 01:16 PM   #51
Brian Pfleuger
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The expander die is only there to slightly bend the mouth of the case outward so as to allow the bullet to be seated without crushing the case because it catches on the edge.

It should not be expanding the case below the mouth. The crimp die can not "resize" the lower parts of the case.

Set up your expander as I described above and see what happens.
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Old March 15, 2011, 03:15 PM   #52
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Quote:
I may be misunderstanding what is actually happening during expansion... how much of the case is actually being worked? just the very edge, or the whole area of the case the bullet ends up sitting in, in addition to the edge?
You're right in how it should work. Problem is that if you use too much expansion then you'll also end up working more deeply into the neck of the case as well and losing neck tension there. Then what happens is when you roll crimp the case mouth you're pretty much only getting good tension at the crimp rather than the whole neck because it's been overworked. The two causes of that are 1) An out of spec plug that's overworking the neck, or 2) Too much case expansion. The former doesn't seem to be your problem since the measurements you posted match the plug from my Lee dies, and I've not had that problem through many 1000's of rounds. So chances are pretty good it's simply too much case expansion on your part.

Follow Peetzakiller's instructions and see if that doesn't fix your woes.
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Old March 15, 2011, 03:32 PM   #53
lostinperiphery
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I cannot seem to push a bullet into the case prior to expanding... Its hard, however, to tell if this is because of the case ID, or just leftover crimp at the very edge?

It seems that by the time I adjust the expanding die just barely deep enough to flare the case edge enough to rest a bullet just slightly inside the case mouth, it is then easy to push the rest of the way inside the case. perhaps not with thumb pressure alone, but not very difficult when pressed against the bench....

Is it proper for the edge of the bullet base to rest just barely inside the case mouth once flared? or should it be more balanced 'on top' of the case? It seems, in the latter, it is easy for the bullet to roll sideways and jam during the seating operation.

Still trying to figure out if this is an equipment problem, or a operational problem.
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Old March 15, 2011, 05:27 PM   #54
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Yeah, it should expand just the mouth and just barely enough for the bullet to sit inside the case. I haven't measured it, but I would guess the bullet might sit down inside the case by about 0.05" or so. A tiny bit deeper might be OK though. You just don't want the sharp edges of the case mouth to be shaving off the soft bullet as it gets seated later.

You should definitely have more neck tension than what you are telling us you have. It really sounds like your sizing die is not compressing the brass enough. Either the brass is very thin or your sizing die is not made properly.

I don't think loose neck tension itself would cause a squib alone. When you have your squibs, is it ever on your very first shot? I assume you are loading up a cylinder full (5 or 6) and firing them? Is the very first one a squib? Have you tried loading up just one round in the chamber and firing it and then loading up another and firing it etc?

What I'm getting at is PERHAPS the neck tension is allowing the bullets to become unseated under recoil. The first one goes off fine. But the bullets pull out partially due to recoil. So the next round might have the bullet barely seated. And the next round, the bullet isn't seated at all. So youpull the trigger on the 3rd round, the primer goes off, but the powder sort of burns a little bit with just enough oomph to get stuck in the barrel.

Whatever is causing the problem needs to be fixed. Find a different brand of brass. Or borrow a different sizing die.
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Old March 15, 2011, 05:38 PM   #55
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AHHH! I had to look at the pics again to be sure. The one case I saw had R P stamped on the head. Is all your brass that same Remington stuff? In my experiences, the Remington brass is almost always thinner than other brands. So far, it has always worked for me in my sizing dies, but I can feel the difference when sizing, expanding, and crimping. If you sizing die is just a tiny bit on the loose side, that thin Remington brass will not be sized enough.

Roll crimps are supposed to help hold the bullet in place for sure. But they work in conjuction with a good firm grip between the rest of the case and the bullet. A crimp can't hold the bullet in place all by itself.

Try some Winchester or Federal brass and see if that helps.
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Old March 15, 2011, 07:53 PM   #56
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My last post provided wrong info. Sorry for the confusion on my part I was thinking in regards to my modified plug for another caliber.

Here are two pics on my lee 38/357 expander plug along with a sized case. The pic where the plug is in the case is the actual depth that is needed to flare the case mouth enough to have the bullet sit atop the charged case.

Is it possible you are forcing the case all the way over the plug to the stop?

[IMG][/IMG]


[IMG][/IMG]

One more pic. For my machined plug/die, this is how much gap there is between the die and the shellplate for a properly flared case.

[IMG][/IMG]

Last edited by RB98SS; March 15, 2011 at 08:23 PM.
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Old March 15, 2011, 08:25 PM   #57
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while i dont have a solution for you, i owned a 6 inched barreled smith and wesson 38 that did it too. same story, jacketed bullets, unique. never did figure why. lead bullets were fine. fwiw, bobn
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Old March 16, 2011, 08:23 AM   #58
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This is interesting to me, I have never had this kind of problem.
Did you deburr the inside of your brass enough? A burr might require you to need to over expand the brass in order to get the bullet started.
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Old March 16, 2011, 07:27 PM   #59
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LostinPeriphery, if you haven't already found the magic formula and everything is working fine, I'd suggest getting some new brass.
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct...ber=1390185296

There doesn't appear to be anything wrong w/ your sizing/expanding technique and the Lee die dimensions are even tighter than mine. (Tho' my good`ol 42-year-old RCBS is ever-so-obviously better, thankyou.)

Brass is cheap considering all you're spending in time, powder, primers and agravation.
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Old March 16, 2011, 08:02 PM   #60
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new brass is next on the list... I have a box of winchest white box I plan to shoot up reload. Unfortunately, that'll mean testing those reloads will two shooting sessions away

I'll keep everyone posted once I try again!
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Old March 16, 2011, 10:30 PM   #61
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I don't know, I'm still not sold that R-P brass is the culprit. I mean, it is thinner and I have seen a few problems with it in my loading experience, but it just seems strange that you're not able to get neck tension on that final round after expansion. I mean, try your other brass out for sure, but don't be surprised if you still have similar problems.

I had the same problem in 45 when I switched to Lee dies so I could use the Auto-Disk charging system. I ended up borrowing a friends dies and trying them which confirmed I could get perfect rounds with his dies alone. Then through process of elimination I found that I could use my sizing and seating dies with his expanding die and still get perfect rounds. As soon as I started using my expanding die however I started having the same problems as you. So I ended up calling Lee and getting them to send me a new expander plug, which I subsequently had to polish down anyway to make sure it wasn't overworking the neck case as I was expanding the mouth.

If you have the ability to borrow a set of dies from someone else to try the same process. Not saying it isn't that brass, but my gut says there's something not right with your expander die or how much crimp you're applying with it. YMMV...
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Old March 17, 2011, 06:44 PM   #62
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More internet BS

"Unique paired up with light bullets/light loads in the 38Spl "...has been reported..." to do exactly what you describe: give inconsistant ignition to the point of squib load. Unique's at its best w/ full power loads."


This is pure hearsay and BS.

I've loaded Unique at far lighter charge weights with NO problems.

Unique works well at far less than "full power loads"

It is also an excellent powder for use with light bullets.

T
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Old March 17, 2011, 07:11 PM   #63
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Quote:
Quote:
"Unique paired up with light bullets/light loads in the 38Spl "...has been reported..." to do exactly what you describe: give inconsistant ignition to the point of squib load. Unique's at its best w/ full power loads."
This is pure hearsay and BS.
What part of "...has been reported..." was unclear? To actually denigrate the experience of others by simply citing your own does give one pause.

I have also been shooting Unique in the 38Sp for many, many, (many) successful years without problem. (Though I admitedly use mod-full loads and heavier (158-ish) bullets.) But I still listen.....

lostinperiphery's problem appears to be inconstant ignition involving loose neck tension -- exacerbated if/when the bullet's lighter to start with.

Last edited by mehavey; March 17, 2011 at 08:15 PM.
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Old March 28, 2011, 06:25 PM   #64
lostinperiphery
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still waiting to test them at the range, but I pulled all the bullets from my last loadings, and noticed that the R-P cases dropped their bullets with, 1 or two relatively light taps with the inertia puller. The winchester cases on the other hand, took at least 4 meaningful smacks.

Chucked the R-P in the trash, and reloaded the winchester brass once again, noting that I could not seat the bullet at all with thumb pressure, and only with much difficulty pushing against the bench. could be the different brass, could be that I adjusted the expanding die better, could be both.

I'll be SHOCKED if I still have issues when I take these to the range.
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Old March 29, 2011, 08:24 PM   #65
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In order to have squibs with that setup, there has to be be light loads. Period. It's not the powder, the cases, or the primers. It's not the crimp. It's insufficient powder. Period. All the little tweaks mentioned won't account for squibs. I believe the poster is not measuring the charge correctly. Easy to do. Review the scale setup instructions very carefully. You'll be OK once you're using the scale correctly.
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Old March 29, 2011, 10:16 PM   #66
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OP already posted pic of scale & powder charge in pan:



That's the right scale setting and (visually) the right amount of powder of that type from my own comparison after seeing the picture.

My bet still lies w/ the bullet/neck tension.
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Old March 29, 2011, 10:21 PM   #67
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I was loading mixed 9mm brass yesterday and came across cases with W-W head stamp. I messed around with several tonight and it didn't matter what I did to the expander die because it was just plain sloppy oversize. I took 5 apart and culled 5 more, so I have 10 that I may try lead bullets in.

I could also push the Berry's 124 grain plated bullet right into the case with my thumb.

This was one of the first times I tried mixed 9mm brass and may be one of the last times since I have about 800 cases of Winchester Win head stamped brass all separated and primed. I noticed the R-P loaded nice and tight!
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Old March 30, 2011, 12:35 PM   #68
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First, let me apologize for, as you say on this forum, hi-jacking this thread, but a picture is worth a thousand words and lostinperiphery's picture of his crimped 38spl, the 15 post from the top, first page, in this thread is just right for me to use to ask the following question: of the four rounds given in his picture two are crimped in the middle of the cannelure and the other two are crimped as to completely cover the cannelure, on the bullet side. So, in the forum's opinion which of the two examples is, in theory, the best position to crimp a round? Again my apologize. Perhaps a private msg reply would be more appropriate as to not further infringe on this thread.

THANK YOU!
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