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Old February 3, 2013, 09:31 PM   #1
Windrac
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Join Date: February 3, 2013
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Gunpowder / Reloading Issues

Hey guys,
I started reloading .223 rounds for my AR15 about a month ago. Every reloaded shell I have put through it doesn't eject, and it's short-stroking. Half of the shells don't even load all the way. I have to pull the charging handle and re-chamber a round manually every time. At first I thought it was a brass diameter problem: a problem with my sizing die. I got a go/ no-go gauge to test this and the brass all fit perfectly!! I went and tried a few more rounds and I discovered these yellow granules getting everywhere inside my action, and making dents in the shoulder of my brass when I fired them! These little yellow granules were up inside my action, as well as on my ejected cases. So my question is, is this what is causing my ejection problem? Do I not have enough powder charge to push the bolt back all the way? What are these little yelow granules? I am pretty new to reloading Picture is attached and info is below. Thanks guys!

55gr FMJ bullets
24.3gr of "SMP 842" Military Surplus gunpowder
.223 LC Virgin Primed brass
(picked up brass and powder at gun show in Indy)
Using Lee "O" press with two-piece RCBS .223 dies.

Thanks for the help!
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Old February 3, 2013, 09:58 PM   #2
ScottRiqui
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Your picture isn't showing up for me. As for the powder, I've never used it, but from what I can find online, 24.3 gr should be in the ballpark - at least enough for the gun to cycle. What primers are you using?
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Old February 4, 2013, 06:40 AM   #3
Windrac
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Join Date: February 3, 2013
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I'm using Winchester small rifle primers. Bulk box of 5000.
And Ill try posting the picture again.

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Old February 4, 2013, 11:20 AM   #4
Slamfire
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Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 4,133
I am very suspicious of that powder you are using.

Unburnt powder will look yellow, sometimes gray, if my memory is correct. I have no idea why you are not getting good combustion. This whole situation makes no sense if you are using the proper powder, primers, and cases.

I would load some 223 shells with a known powder, say IMR 4895, Varget, and see if your AR functions.

If you have a chronograph that will tell if something anomalous, velocity wise, is going on.

Do not “add” more powder in the concept that your charges are low.
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Old February 4, 2013, 02:57 PM   #5
Nathan
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Join Date: July 1, 2001
Posts: 2,046
That's not a canister grade powder...meaning load data works a bit different.

FWIW, I believe you load said powder to an estimated load, pressure test and add or subtract until you get good accuracy and pressures. Then load your 100 lbs of powder into a lot.

For, the rest of us, we use canister grade powders which should provide very similar pressures from lot to lot. You can expect one can to shoot the same as the next.
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Old February 4, 2013, 03:12 PM   #6
chris in va
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Join Date: December 26, 2004
Location: Louisville KY
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Quote:
.24.3gr of "SMP 842" Military Surplus gunpowder
Bingo.

Get a pound of 335 or something. Clearly the powder isn't igniting properly, leaving those 'yellow' flakes in the action.

BTW you are using a full length resizing die, correct? Some 223 dies only resize the case neck.
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