The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > Handloading, Reloading, and Bullet Casting

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old March 17, 2012, 01:10 PM   #1
varmiter
Member
 
Join Date: December 2, 2011
Posts: 24
Bulged Cases

I really get upset when I hear folks talking about ironing out a bulged case. What causes the case to bulge?

In most instances it is the unsupported portion of the chamber that allows this to happen. Two possibilities, as I see it. One, the bulged case may have been in perfect condition but the load could have been too hot causing the bulge. In this instance, the case has been weakened but the bulge itself. It is further weakened by the ironing out. This case should be scrapped. Two, if the case was weak in the first place, you can consider yourself lucky your gun didn’t do a self disassembly.

In my opinion, reloading an ironed out bulged case is just asking for trouble.

Any thoughts?

Chris
varmiter is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 01:15 PM   #2
howlnmad
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 29, 2009
Location: Harriman Tn
Posts: 413
The infamous "Glock Bulge" occurs on factory brass as well as reloads. What harm is there in ironing out the bulge? Should we throw out once fired rifle brass instead of resizing it?
howlnmad is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 01:17 PM   #3
varmiter
Member
 
Join Date: December 2, 2011
Posts: 24
If it is bulged, yes you should toss it.

Chris
varmiter is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 02:13 PM   #4
dacaur
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 16, 2010
Posts: 733
I guess you better hurry and get the word out to the thousands upon thousands of people who iron out the bulges in their 40S&W cases over and over without incidence....
Do you REALLY think that MFG's would make products like bulge busters if there was ANY chance that it would cause what you are worried about here?
dacaur is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 02:23 PM   #5
Rangefinder
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 4, 2005
Posts: 2,017
If this were true, then pushing the shoulder back in other high pressure cartridges wouldn't be a common practice--and it is. Same goes for fire forming brass, and wildcat alterations of one brass into another--all of which is done very regularly. It doesn't hurt anything other than work-hardening the brass over time. It will become brittle after a while, but debulging is nothing new or dangerous. Do what you like with your brass--just don't keep propagating bad information based on personal opinion. Thanks.
__________________
"Why is is called Common Sense when it seems so few actually possess it?"

Guns only have two enemies: Rust and Politicians.

Last edited by Rangefinder; March 17, 2012 at 02:28 PM.
Rangefinder is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 02:27 PM   #6
snuffy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 20, 2001
Location: Oshkosh wi.
Posts: 2,774
Geez, some people worry about the darnedest things! Yes, the bulge IS caused by the feed ramp, unsupported portion of the chamber. No, it does NOT weaken the brass! That's the reason the cases are made of brass. It's resilient to allow re-forming again and again.

Find something to REALLY worry about, like no powder in a case, then seat a bullet,(squib). Or loading without a loading manual.

The list goes on and on about real concerns about reloading/handloading. If you're going to scrap all your 9mm, 40 S&W, and 45 bulged cases, toss them my way, I'll pay you scrap brass price AND pay postage to send them to me.
__________________
The more people I meet, the more I love my dog

They're going to get their butts kicked over there this election. How come people can't spell and use words correctly?
snuffy is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 02:28 PM   #7
Don H
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 8, 2000
Location: SLC,Utah
Posts: 2,705
Quote:
Originally Posted by varmiter
Any thoughts?
Everybody's entitled to an opinion. Given how long the practice of re-using bulged cases has been going on, you should be able to produce a substantial amount of evidence to support your opinion, yes?
Don H is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 02:49 PM   #8
Hammerhead
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 31, 2004
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 1,565
Here's Lee's disclamer about their 'Bulge Buster' dies on their their website;
Quote:
Glock Cases: We do not recommend "fixing" cases fired in pistols with unsupported chambers, because there is no way to make them safe once they have bulged. The case wall is thinned where it bulges, and resizing the outside of the case back down to the correct diameter does not restore the case back to its original thickness. If this case is fired in a pistol with an unsupported chamber again, and this thinned section of brass happens to line up with the unsupported part of the chamber, there is a high probability that the case will rupture.
Hammerhead is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 02:58 PM   #9
flashhole
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 9, 2005
Location: Owego, NY
Posts: 1,298
That falls into the same category as my wife complaining about having to run laundry through the rinse cycle twice because the clothes are still soapy. I tell her to cut back on the detergent.

She says ... the manufacturer says to use this much.

I say ... if I made laundry detergent I would tell you to use the absolute maximum amount so you run out more quickly and buy more at the grocery store.

She says ... so you know more than the manufacturer.

I say ... God gave me a brain. I thnik his expectation is I use it.
__________________
Gun control is hitting what you aim at..
flashhole is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 04:03 PM   #10
varmiter
Member
 
Join Date: December 2, 2011
Posts: 24
I just stated an opinion. As an opinion, there is no evidence, on my part. Just opinion.

Now, Hammerhead has actually quoted from Lee. Thanks Hammerhead.

Nuff Said.

Chris
varmiter is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 04:27 PM   #11
dacaur
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 16, 2010
Posts: 733
Quote:
Here's Lee's disclamer about their 'Bulge Buster' dies on their their website;

Quote:
Glock Cases: We do not recommend "fixing" cases fired in pistols with unsupported chambers, because there is no way to make them safe once they have bulged. The case wall is thinned where it bulges, and resizing the outside of the case back down to the correct diameter does not restore the case back to its original thickness. If this case is fired in a pistol with an unsupported chamber again, and this thinned section of brass happens to line up with the unsupported part of the chamber, there is a high probability that the case will rupture.
Yep, thats called CYA. They know its safe or they wouldn't have made the product. On the other hand, I dont recall hearing about anyone having an actual problem...

Quote:
I just stated an opinion. As an opinion, there is no evidence, on my part. Just opinion.
Everyone is free to have their own opinions, even if they are backed up by nothing. However, when you post those opinions on a public message board, be prepared for people with actual evidence* to come in with dissenting opinions, and be prepared to change yours. Dont feel bad about it, its better to speak your mind and have it changed, than to keep quiet and keep thinking wrongly....

*evidence= the thousands of thousands of cases that have been repeatedly fired in glocks without bursting.... As always though, use common sense and inspect your cases. Its obvious that repeatedly ironing out the bulge, just like any other resizing will work harden the brass after some time. These cases should be checked for impending case head separation just like any rifle cartridge thats re-sized.... Also one should use common sense in not trying to iron out rediculous buldges and all will be well. It seems using the same inspection process I use for dents would be a good idea, if there is ANY crease or sharp ridge, toss it, if its a smooth dent (bulge) you are ok.

Lastly, if you dont feel comfortable reloading slightly bulged cases, dont do it, no one is going to force you! OTOH, many people do it without issue, and should not be looked down upon, they are not "asking for trouble" as long as they are using common sense.
dacaur is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 04:48 PM   #12
serf 'rett
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 25, 2009
Location: Stuttgart
Posts: 1,333
Hey snuffy, you mind if I get in on some of the ship-me-your-bulged-scrap-brass action?

Since my primary brass collection point is the range used by the local law, I strongly suspect that around 10K of my 12K pieces of 40S&W were "Glocked". Easy to tell the Glocked pieces by the rectangle imprint on the primer. Easy to ID the brass shot in the older Glocks by the "belly."

My opinion on bulged brass...

...use 'em til I lose 'em.
__________________
A lack of planning on your part does not necessarily constitute an emergency on my part.
serf 'rett is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 05:39 PM   #13
3kgt2nv
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 7, 2012
Location: hudson valley NY
Posts: 465
i have loaded bulged glock case 20 times before i finally retired them. I use a gnx die from redding and have experienced 0 issues in over 30k rounds reloaded and shot in the same glock

if fixing a bulged case technically any case that needs to be run thru a resizing die should be scrapped since they are bulged from at production time.
3kgt2nv is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 05:50 PM   #14
Hammerhead
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 31, 2004
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 1,565
Quote:
They know its safe or they wouldn't have made the product.
Or they knew it would be profitable and the disclaimer is meant to protect their liability in court.
Hammerhead is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 05:52 PM   #15
Hammerhead
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 31, 2004
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 1,565
On second thought maybe some of both.
Hammerhead is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 06:39 PM   #16
snuffy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 20, 2001
Location: Oshkosh wi.
Posts: 2,774
Quote:
Quote:
Glock Cases: We do not recommend "fixing" cases fired in pistols with unsupported chambers, because there is no way to make them safe once they have bulged. The case wall is thinned where it bulges, and resizing the outside of the case back down to the correct diameter does not restore the case back to its original thickness. If this case is fired in a pistol with an unsupported chamber again, and this thinned section of brass happens to line up with the unsupported part of the chamber, there is a high probability that the case will rupture.
That's lawyer speak for, "we told you it might happen"! It isn't worth the ink and paper it was written on, or the disturbed electrons it took to post it on here!

Generation 1 glocks had a VERY large feed ramp on the 40 S&W barrels. That's where the myth comes from about glocked brass not being safe to reload.
__________________
The more people I meet, the more I love my dog

They're going to get their butts kicked over there this election. How come people can't spell and use words correctly?
snuffy is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 08:44 PM   #17
varmiter
Member
 
Join Date: December 2, 2011
Posts: 24
This is what is so loveable about some of us. We are not willing to take the opinion of others, nor are we willing to take the opinion of the manufacturers. It is our choice, which is true.

Granted, disclaimers from manufacturers are lawyers. So, from where do these lawyers get their information?? .......The manufacturers and engineers themselves. They just try to translate engineering into lawyer.

We are each free to choose.
But we are not free from the consequence of our choice.

Chris

Last edited by varmiter; March 17, 2012 at 09:13 PM.
varmiter is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 08:52 PM   #18
243winxb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 26, 2011
Posts: 974
Battle of the Bulge.

Posted at the Hodgdon website under 40 S&W
Quote:
This data is intended for use in firearms with barrels that fully support the cartridge in the chamber. Use of this data in firearms that do not fully support the cartridge may result in bulged cases, ruptured cases, case-head separation or other condition that may result in damage to the firearm and/or result in injury or death of the shooter and/or bystanders.
243winxb is offline  
Old March 17, 2012, 09:34 PM   #19
Rangefinder
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 4, 2005
Posts: 2,017
Quote:
Granted, disclaimers from manufacturers are lawyers. So, from where do these lawyers get their information?? .......The manufacturers and engineers themselves. They just try to translate engineering into lawyer.
Actually it comes from our politically correct modern world where common sense went out the window along with personal accountability.
"No one told me a little tube generating 30,000psi or more could be DANGEROUS!! It's all the manufacturer's fault for providing me with the means to be a complete flipping moron!! SUE! SUE! SUE!" Kind of like the McDonalds lawsuit for spilled coffee because "no one warned me it would be hot"... THAT is why there are disclaimers on everything including your socks---because people in general tend to be ROCK STUPID.
__________________
"Why is is called Common Sense when it seems so few actually possess it?"

Guns only have two enemies: Rust and Politicians.
Rangefinder is offline  
Old March 18, 2012, 12:20 PM   #20
dacaur
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 16, 2010
Posts: 733
Quote:
This is what is so loveable about some of us. We are not willing to take the opinion of others,
I know right? I mean, lets just toss out the window the FACT that thousands of people do it without incident, who needs facts, right? Oh, and then there is the little matter of no one here or other forums I have read being able to come up with one shred of proof that its a problem...
No, I think I will take the ACTUAL experience of thousands of like minded individuals over some lawyer speak written up as a CYA....

Real life proof and common sense is what I base my opinions on. Others are free to base theirs on fantasy, what ifs, and imagination if they so choose. But I wont stand by and allow them to help form others opinions based on their fantasy.

In today's society, They can put all the warnings they want on something, but if its TRULY not safe, they ARE going to be sued. A disclaimer like that means NOTHING in the courts. Honestly, can you imagine the case? "well your honor, yes we did manufacture the "bulge buster" in question, but we included a disclaimer with it that nobody should use it, so doesnt that free us of liability?" It would be like someone selling a coffee maker with the disclaimer, "DO NOT MAKE COFFEE WITH THIS IT COULD EXPLODE". Then, when thousands of people have coffee makers explode in their face, the MFG goes "nope, we told you not to make coffee in that coffee maker" You KNOW the judge is going to go "you sold an unsafe product, so you are liable"
dacaur is offline  
Old March 18, 2012, 01:54 PM   #21
BDS-THR
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 12, 2010
Posts: 474
+1 to what Lee Precision posted.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Precision
Glock Cases: We do not recommend "fixing" cases fired in pistols with unsupported chambers, because there is no way to make them safe once they have bulged. The case wall is thinned where it bulges, and resizing the outside of the case back down to the correct diameter does not restore the case back to its original thickness. If this case is fired in a pistol with an unsupported chamber again, and this thinned section of brass happens to line up with the unsupported part of the chamber, there is a high probability that the case will rupture.
Just ask yourself this question, "Do you feel lucky?"

If a case don't fully resize on the first attempt, I rotate the case 90 degrees and resize again (and this is with the regular resizing die). If the case won't fully resize on the second attempt and pass the case gauge, I deem the case overstretched and overly thinned to be reloaded safely and recycle the brass.

In addition to Hodgdon's warning, here's another from Accurate Powder:



http://www.accuratepowder.com/safety...atic-handguns/

Quote:
SPECIAL WARNING CONCERNING CHAMBER DIMENSIONS OF SEMI AUTO HANDGUNS THAT DO NOT FULLY SUPPORT THE CASE.

A potentially dangerous condition can occur with certain aftermarket modifications, and also certain factory-produced semi auto pistols that have chamber configurations that do not fully support the chambered cartridge case. This modification is incorporated or done to aid in the reliable feeding of the round from the magazine. Although it might be acceptable for newly manufactured ammunition, or new unused cases, a potentially hazardous condition can be created when cases are reloaded a second time or more.

After firing a round in one of these handguns, a deformed case can result. We recommend inspecting each case for a bulged or “pregnant” shape from the base of the main body towards one third to half of the case body, which is a sure sign that the case is not fully supported. Although this bulged part is reformed during resizing, the case strength could be weakened. The problem occurs when this part of the weakened case again lines up with the modified part of the chamber. This may cause the case to fail, which allows the gases to be ejected into the internal cavity of the weapon.

If you own a firearm in which the chamber does not fully support the chambered round and is producing the above mentioned symptoms, Western Powders, Inc. recommends that you either contact the firearm manufacturer to determine if the case is fully supported, or have a competent gunsmith examine the firearm and determine the amount of support provided to the case.

If your firearm does not provide complete support for the case, please take extreme care and refrain from reloading cases.
BDS-THR is offline  
Old March 18, 2012, 03:22 PM   #22
BDS-THR
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 12, 2010
Posts: 474
Not all bulged cases are the same. Here are some bulged cases shot in looser chambers. Most of these will fully resize in regular sizing dies.




They can be resized flat like this (If they don't fully resize on first attempt, I rotate the case 90 degrees and resize a second time. If they won't drop in tight Lone Wolf chambers freely after being resized twice, they get recycled). BTW, I used regular Lee carbide sizing die. If your cases are bulging and you are not comfortable about reloading bulged cases, reduce your charge, change powder or use an aftermarket barrel that has tighter chamber that won't bulge the case. All of my spent cases from Lone Wolf barrels show no bulge.

Last edited by BDS-THR; March 18, 2012 at 03:30 PM.
BDS-THR is offline  
Old March 18, 2012, 03:34 PM   #23
jimbob86
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 4, 2007
Location: All the way to NEBRASKA
Posts: 6,778
Quote:
i have loaded bulged glock case 20 times before i finally retired them. I use a gnx die from redding and have experienced 0 issues in over 30k rounds reloaded and shot in the same glock
You have a stock barrel? How hot are you loading these? Certainly not to 35K psi, 20 times..... right? Either that, or you need to buy a lottery ticket .......
__________________
TheGolden Rule of Tool Use: "If you don't know what you are doing, DON'T."

http://nefirearm.com/
jimbob86 is offline  
Old March 28, 2012, 04:59 PM   #24
marklyftogt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 11, 2012
Location: Salinas, CA
Posts: 137
My Bulges are gone

I had the same issue with my Lee dies for 38 spl and 9mm before I put on a Pro Auto Disk powder measure. Once I did the problem went away with both sets of dies. Obviously more flare somehow.

Maybe you could put a washer between the plug and the powder funnel adapter in the die to give more flare if you dont have one. As long as it doesn restrict powder flow.

PMC 38 spl cases are the only ones I have had some issues with on the FTD scraping a little and they are thicker than most.

Last edited by marklyftogt; March 28, 2012 at 07:06 PM.
marklyftogt is offline  
Old March 31, 2012, 12:01 AM   #25
shootsafe
Member
 
Join Date: March 2, 2008
Location: Lincoln, NE
Posts: 86
Unsupported Chamber?

Do all pistols have an unsupported Chamber or is this only some?
shootsafe is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:56 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.13327 seconds with 7 queries