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Old January 26, 2014, 11:39 PM   #1
RugerSteve
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Reloading 9mm

I am just getting into reloading. Only 9mm at his time. I just picked up my new Lee Pro 1000 the other day. I went by some videos on YouTube about setting up your dies. I bought setup for 9mm and thought that maybe the dies were setup, since they were already installed, so I called Lee, and they said they should be checked. When it finishes a load, and goes to the bullet setting die, it doesn't seem to crimp it any, because you can feel the lip/edge of the the brass. Does 9mm need to be crimped? I need to set the bullet in .035, to bring OAL down to 1.100. The die is set according to factory, (with shell plate all the way up, run die all the way in to the plate, then back it out three full turns and lock it down). So if it is no noticeably crimping the casing, should I run the die back in maybe a 1/4-1/2 turn?
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Old January 26, 2014, 11:52 PM   #2
Ccctennis
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9mm

9mm does not need any real crimp. You just need to take the slight flare out of the case mouth. I have the taper crimp die set and I adjust it to just make the case mouth flat against the bullet like before you sized it. Only revolver rounds and some lever action rounds need moderate to heavy crimping. The semi auto action in most 9mm help absorb the recoil energy so you won't have any issues with bullet setback.
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Old January 27, 2014, 12:22 AM   #3
RugerSteve
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The end of the casing where the bullet goes just feels as if all you did was shove it in (actually that's what you're doing), but don't feel any difference if it is giving a roll crimp as someone else stated. should I turn that die in just a little ?
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Old January 27, 2014, 12:31 AM   #4
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i wouldnt worry about it, i dont use a crimp die on any of my 9mm, as long as its not flared out, ts not to be concerned with, you want as little crimp as you need, and likely dont need any

ill upload a pic of a finished bullet so you can compare
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Old January 27, 2014, 12:32 AM   #5
Misssissippi Dave
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Try using your caliper to measure the case of a round you have loaded. Measure it just above the base of the bullet. Now measure it close to the mouth of the case. These measurements should be the same or very close to the same. As mentioned you only want to remove the flair added to the brass to load the bullet and no more.

Revolvers normally head space at the rim of the case. Semi-auto tapered case ammo head spaces on the mouth of the case. The case need to have some of the case wider than the bullet to get it seat properly. Many people use the barrel of their pistol to see if it will drop in and fall out when the barrel is tipped up using only the weight of the bullet. When it won't drop all the way in there is a problem. Most of the time it is caused by either not removing the flair or loading too long and the bullet hits the rifling. Sometimes loading too short can cause feed issues just as loading too long can. I prefer to load FMJ bullets some place between 1.120 and 1.135 OAL. I have needed to load a little shorter for just one pistol. The maximum for that one is 1.120 but it feeds better at 1.115. Loading shorter does increase pressure to a certain extent. Your magazine often will give you the first indication if you are loading too long. When the magazine is filled fully with your reloaded ammo and doesn't bind up or scrape the tip of the bullets going down the mag tube and removing them by using your thumb you probably are not too long. Still minor changes might be needed to cycle well.

Most of the time when reading manual data the OAL listed is the minimum OAL you should ever use. Loading a little longer might be a good thing. 1.125" OAL is normally considered a medium length for 9 mm ammo. Some people load longer and some load shorter Flat nosed and hollow point ammo tends to need to be loaded shorter than you would for ball type FMJ ammo. I load 124 grain FMJ bullet at 1.135 when ever possible. Some of my pistols will allow even longer lengths so you might want to explore a little to find out what length you pistol prefers.

Only load very few rounds at first to find out what works best for you. My loads may work well enough in your pistol but you may find something else works even better in yours. Loading plinking ammo is easy enough to make. Loading ammo made to work best in your pistol sure beats any factory ammo you might buy.
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Old January 27, 2014, 12:42 AM   #6
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the 3 on left are handloads of 9x19 of different weight and diameter, the two on right are factory, the brass winchester on the right has the smoothest of the rims, but still no noticeable crimp



if your case is flared out around the bullet, than you need to back off your case expander die

9mm is not a straight round, its tapered, your round will not be the same size at base of case as it is at the top, it goes from around 0.388 at above rim to around 0.375 at case mouth
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Last edited by skizzums; January 27, 2014 at 12:51 AM.
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Old January 27, 2014, 02:00 AM   #7
Jim243
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Quote:
Does 9mm need to be crimped?
NO!!! They don't, they are tapered cases (slight) they do need to be flush with the bullet however to feed properly. Test one or two with the barrel of your gun out to make sure they go in without any issues. (It's called a drop test)

9 mm indexes on the case mouth and crimping them could cause problems.

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Old January 27, 2014, 02:22 AM   #8
RugerSteve
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Thanks guys. Yea my OAL is 1.100. I checked some of my factory ammo (Herters) and it is 1.165. That means that I will have to re-adjust the settings whenever I change to a different powder seeing that I have noticed different OAL's for different powders. I set it again and it seems pretty good now.
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Old January 27, 2014, 02:37 AM   #9
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Another question that I have is, is there anything that I can add to my walnut shells in the vibrating tumbler to polish my brass? I am using 24 grit walnut shells clean them. Coming out pretty clean, but want to polish also. Any tricks? Hate to have to use walnut shells to clean, then have to change everything and reload tumbler with corncob .
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Old January 27, 2014, 04:17 AM   #10
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RugerSteve, do you own a handloading manual? If yes, please read it. If no, please buy one. We love to help and answer questions, but we'd like to know that you are helping also.

Semi-auto pistol rounds typically head-space on the case mouth itself. It has to have the nice edge you can feel, that's how the loaded round knows where to "sit" in the chamber. 9mm kind of helps itself because it's tapered, but .45 Auto not as much.

If you attempt to impart too much taper "crimp" with the normal seat/crimp die that comes with nearly every carbide die set (for certain, Lee dies) all you will do is seriously corrupt the round you're trying to build.
Quote:
Yea my OAL is 1.100. I checked some of my factory ammo (Herters) and it is 1.165. That means that I will have to re-adjust the settings whenever I change to a different powder seeing that I have noticed different OAL's for different powders. I set it again and it seems pretty good now.
Let's look at this and get the proper information from it, to serve your ammo and your safety.

Published load data lists a "minimum COAL" because bullets occupy combustion space inside the cartridge case. If you use a bullet that occupies more internal space (especially in a high pressure round such as 9mm) you need to be aware that occupying more internal space raises pressures. The COAL listed with published load data doesn't mean you need to load it to that COAL. What they are telling you in that load data is that if you are using the SAME bullet and the same powder/charge weight, your results should be aligned with their safely as long as you don't seat the bullet shorter than the minimum COAL they included.

Remember that some of what is listed in load data isn't there for you to follow to the letter; it's there because it was relevant. A lot of published load data will tell you the primer they used to work up the load and some of it will tell you the ambient temperature when they tested the data. It does not mean you also must use a Federal primer and only shoot at 78 degrees F.

The Herter's factory ammo COAL tells you very little about what you want to build. Externally, you need the loaded round to cleanly fit your magazine, and feed from it. And you need the loaded round to "plunk" in to the chamber (and fall back out freely) as Jim243 suggested. You'll find out quickly that the COAL for the Herter's round means so very little if the component bullet you bought to handload with doesn't have a very similar shape to it. Oh, they may all look "alike" but trust me... they aren't. When you find the right (picky!) pistol barrel with a short leade, you'll learn something new that day... usually at the shooting range instead of at the load bench. I did EXACTLY that about 6 weeks ago, and I've been loading for a couple decades.

It's critical as you make your ammo that you measure your COAL and you record it so you can repeat it. Because if you attempt to use the same powder, same charge weight, same bullet, but you seat the bullet -FAR- deeper than you did last time, your pressures rise, and they rise quickly.

Repeatability is your goal... well, after safety and functionality. So record what you do and adjust from that point if/when necessary. If you are only loading 9mm for one handgun, you can tailor your COAL to run perfectly in that one handgun. As you up the ante with platforms, you'll find that you may have to tweak the ammo (usually, it's the COAL that begs for attention) to please all of the guns that are going to eat it.
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Old January 27, 2014, 04:23 AM   #11
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Quote:
Another question that I have is, is there anything that I can add to my walnut shells in the vibrating tumbler to polish my brass? I am using 24 grit walnut shells clean them. Coming out pretty clean, but want to polish also. Any tricks? Hate to have to use walnut shells to clean, then have to change everything and reload tumbler with corncob .
If you ask 20 guys how they tumble, you'll get 22 answers.

I only use corncob, ever. I add 3 squares of cut up paper towel (3"x3" square) and then I swirl less than a "capful" of Nu Finish car polish. Nu Finish seems to be excruciatingly expensive in that bright orange bottle, but when it's used to tumble brass that one bottle seems to last a good long time.

I put the vibratory cleaner on a lamp timer and set it to run for 4 hours. Don't decap before tumbling... unless you are wet tumbling or using steel pins or sonic cleaning, decapping first is fruitless in every way and just causes problems.
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Old January 27, 2014, 07:04 AM   #12
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yeah 1.165 is way too long, i try to keep it around 1.120, nothing wrong with 1.110 so long as your keeping your powder charge low to start, but you should back off a little on the seating

i justuse any car-wash i have laying around, add a little bit, you should run the tumbler for a good couple hours after adding liquid to it before putting brass in it, if its too wet it will clog up and dry in your brass
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Old January 27, 2014, 07:22 AM   #13
RugerSteve
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Sevens: yes, I do have a manual and have been looking through it. I understand the theory behind the seating of the bullet. Less space within the casing causes higher pressures upon being ignited. My point was, if I choose a different powder, or different bullet type( cast, FMJ, JHP,) , I probably will be changing the seating depth sooner or later, because the OAL may be different for one of those reasons. In other words, as long as I stick with the same recipe, I will not have to change anything, but if I change one of the other variables, like bullet type, weight, or powder, I probably will be resetting it at some point. Also, I understand what OAL is, but also noticed in some the manuals and load data there is COL, and now you are saying COAL, are these all referring to the same thing?
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Old January 27, 2014, 07:27 AM   #14
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Yea, Hodgdon data for 115gn LRN with HP-38 states OAL for the 9mm to 1.100
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Old January 27, 2014, 08:50 AM   #15
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RE: Tumbling and shinny brass.

A contributor to the board wrote a few weeks back that his brass was too shinny because he left it in his tumbler and forgot about it. Many others contributed to the thread saying the same. At that time I was cleaning my own brass for only 1 hour. I decided to "make the mistake" and let it go for an additional hour, using crushed walnut, never have used cleaning additives. Needless to say the brass came out with a nice gold polish. So, before you go out and buy something else, extend the time you leave your brass in the tumbler and see if you like the results.

Good luck.
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Old January 27, 2014, 09:47 AM   #16
Jim Watson
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OAL is governed by the bullet and your chamber, not the powder.

What the manual shows applies only if you are using the same bullet and if your chamber will accept it. Some labs load short and come up with lighter loads than those that load to the SAAMI maximum length and get heavier loads at the same chamber pressure.

The handloader standard is the "Plunk Test." Your loaded rounds should drop freely into the chamber of your barrel (clean and out of the gun) and drop back out. I would load to as long an OAL as would pass this inspection.

Powder charges depend on the boring fine print about "starting loads" and "working up."
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Old January 27, 2014, 12:23 PM   #17
RugerSteve
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I was talking to a Balastition at Hodgdon and he told that probably will never see a plated bullet listed with powder recipes. So, if I am looking for 115gr RN recipe for a plated bullet, either go with a recipe for either a LRN, or use the recipe for FMJ, if the LRN isn't available. Therefore I do believe the OAL would varie, seeing that with Hodgdon powder your OAL or COAL would go from 1.100 to 1.169
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Old January 27, 2014, 12:58 PM   #18
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I load Berry's plated bullets and they say to use low to mid FMJ loads for their bullets. Powder type and amount of powder used is the important thing for COL if your bullet passes the Plunk test. What powder are you using?
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Old January 27, 2014, 01:07 PM   #19
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Quote:
My point was, if I choose a different powder, or different bullet type( cast, FMJ, JHP,) , I probably will be changing the seating depth sooner or later, because the OAL may be different for one of those reasons. In other words, as long as I stick with the same recipe, I will not have to change anything, but if I change one of the other variables, like bullet type, weight, or powder, I probably will be resetting it at some point. Also, I understand what OAL is, but also noticed in some the manuals and load data there is COL, and now you are saying COAL, are these all referring to the same thing?
OAL, COL, COAL are all the same thing. It's "overall length" or "cartridge over all length"

Again, you do not need to change your COAL as long as the handgun's chamber and magazine like the COAL that you are using. COAL is listed with the published load data so that -if- you follow their data, you aren't inadvertently/unknowingly making something HIGHER in pressure than what they intended simply by seating too deep.

If you are -always- using the same component bullet in your loads...
And you are not loading for more than one different pistol...
Then there is no earthly reason to change your COAL as long as you're making a safe, functioning load.
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Old January 27, 2014, 02:58 PM   #20
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Perhaps some enlightenment here. When I began loading a year ago I was overly concerned with making sure the OAL was precisely achieved as per the Data requirements. It drove me nuts. Over time I learned a few lessons such as the fact that bullet and cases sizes vary. (test this and see for yourself, especially range brass - it's fractional but it exists). I learned through the board that there are margins that can/should be worked within.

Stevens is right in his notation, as long as the round fits the chamber, you're good to go. Each gun is unique and has it's own maximum length. So you will need to experiment. Further, yes, you do increase your pressure if you seat too deep. What I do, depending on the gun I am loading for, is establish a range of length. As an example, my CZ 82 Makarov calls for a max OAL of .980 and a minimum of .965. [A factory round is usually .974]. My point is this, I set a safety range of .980 max to .970 min for this particular gun. Based on my experience I know that the size of the round will fit the chamber and will fire (providing my load is right - goes without saying).

Thus, I would council you to concentrate on getting your Data matched with your grain weight, the right primer of course, bullet type and weight and a safe OAL range for your rounds. (write it down in your manual and reference it when you load)

While the members of this board are very precise in their work, they will be able to speak to ranges of acceptance that keep you safe and on the firing line.

Good luck.
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Old January 27, 2014, 05:44 PM   #21
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got timer?

I clean (zillions) of cases in vibratory cleaners using corn-cob media intended for case cleaning, and Dillon Rapid Polish.

Tested many.....
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Old January 27, 2014, 05:48 PM   #22
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no

I load an OAL so my gun works.

Powder charge may vary, and normally I am not pushing load limits with said charge.
If I shorten OAL I anticipate zero "pressure" issues.

'Cept I gots sperience, and spare guns and barrels.
So far --1994-- so good
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Old January 27, 2014, 07:37 PM   #23
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You can get bright cases by tumbling longer even with walnut media. Corncob media (I prefer 20/40) will polish better but it might not clean as fast as walnut will. Some people seem to like mixing walnut and corncob 50/50 to try to get the best of both worlds. Adding NuFinish or other liquid auto polishes to the media will keep the cases from losing that bright shine for a longer time. Dillon Rapid Polish is a liquid additive that does reduce the time it takes to tumble your brass to get them clean enough to load or even have a bright finish. Adding a dryer sheet such as bounce to the media tends to reduce the the amount of dust produced during the cleaning process. It always best to run the media without any brass for a while if you add any liquid additives. Additives really are not needed in my opinion. I do use them from time to time. Most of the time it is to extend the media life.

The first thing to try is to tumble your brass longer like double the normal time to see if you get the results you are looking for.
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Old January 27, 2014, 09:10 PM   #24
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Boss man: I am using Hodgdon HP-38.
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Old January 27, 2014, 09:36 PM   #25
RugerSteve
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Mark I agree. I'm looking at 115gr plated RN, Hodgdon HP-38 at 4.3gr on the low side, with a OAL of 1.100.
I will be loading for a Glock 26, and aRuger SR9c.
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