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Old March 30, 2013, 08:07 PM   #1
93Harley
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Decaping Sellier & Bellot 9mm brass

I am new to reloading and have been buying 9mm brass through Gun Broker. I purchased 6,000 cases from 5 different suppliers. I mixed the brass together, then sorted and am now in the process of resizing and decaping. Everything was going fine until I happened upon Sellier & Bellot brass. On the first round, I broke the Lee decaping pin. After securing another pin and investigating, discovered the decaping pin would not even fit through the flash hole! Do I through away a few pounds of S&B brass or can the flash hole be safely modified to conform to other brands?
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Old March 30, 2013, 08:20 PM   #2
ScottRiqui
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I've noticed that they require a little more force to deprime, but I think that's mostly the sealing varnish they often use.

I can usually deprime them just fine, though, so I think the flash hole that was too small for the pin to even fit through might have been a fluke.
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Old March 30, 2013, 08:28 PM   #3
m&p45acp10+1
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Are you using a decapping pin die, or the sizing/decap die?

I have had no problems with decapping it with a standard sizing/decap die. Some are crimped primer pockets. You will notice when priming if they are. It will feel like you are trying to push a bowling ball through the tail pipe of your car if it is crimped. If so put the brass to the side for removing the primer pocket crimp. Lyman makes a hand tool for it that cost less than $20 and takes a few seconds. Or RCBS makes primer pocket swage that goes on the press and presses a rod to remove the crimp.
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Old March 30, 2013, 08:29 PM   #4
DarthNul
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Welcome to reloading!

I've used lots of S&B brass and never broken a pin on it. Primers to seem to be a little tighter both coming out and going back in but never problematic.
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Old March 30, 2013, 08:32 PM   #5
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First thought is that you got some Berdan type brass, does it have 2 small holes instead of one? S&B brass (Boxer style) does have a reputation for having very tight primer holes ( I completely agree) and I am quite happy when I find some at the range. My guess would be that it is a combination of tight primers and decapping pins not being as strong as they should be. You might check your die and make sure the pin is aiming straight down and not at an angle, that might cause a problem. Also, make sure the pin is only going down far enough to pop the primer and not much more. That's all I got.
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Old March 30, 2013, 08:47 PM   #6
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Get yourself a #45 drill bit. They are used to insure/measure standard size flash holes. If the drill bit will not enter a S&B flash hole, drill it out with that drill bit. Unlike most, I like S&B 9MM brass...as does my Browning High Power. The only problem I have with S&B 9MM is that apparently, they do not provide empty brass for hand-loaders. We have to rely on scrounging one-fired or buying loaded ammo to get the cases.
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Old March 30, 2013, 09:38 PM   #7
93Harley
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Thanks for the help

I have been using the Lee Reloading Dies which has the Carbide sizing die with the decaping pin set in the middle. The cases only have one small hole in the middle. At least on the two cases I have been able to punch. I will check the depth of punch and pin straightness before I make another attempt. Before I mounted the new pin in the die, I checked the fit and discovered the pin would not fit all the way into the flash hole. Now I'm concerned that even though I could remove the primer and get a new one in, is the flash hold too small to allow for proper powder ignition by the primer? And if I drill the flash hold to a larger diameter, will that affect anything?
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Old March 31, 2013, 10:13 AM   #8
m&p45acp10+1
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Lyman makes a tool to deburr, and uniform flash holes. Price of it is less than $20 from most sellers. It looks like a screw driver with a tiny drill bit on the end. I use it for my .223 cases that am loading with ball powders.
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Old March 31, 2013, 12:31 PM   #9
arizona98tj
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I've not encountered any issues decapping any brand of pistol brass (including S&B), however, I'm not using any Lee hardware either. Perhaps there is a slight difference between various manufacturer's decapping pins.
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Old March 31, 2013, 01:02 PM   #10
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"I checked the fit and discovered the pin would not fit all the way into the flash hole." Trying to figure this out, are you saying the end of the pin is tapered so that only the tip of it will enter the hole? Most pins I've seen are rounded on the end but not tapered. Will the pin fit in the flash hole if you try it from the other side thru the primer pocket? On a different topic, do you know where you will be doing most of your shooting? 9mm is so common that I guarantee you I come home from the range with more brass than I took. There are plenty of shooters using factory ammo that are more than happy to let you pick up their brass (best to ask first) so it may not be necessary to buy that much brass.
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Old March 31, 2013, 06:16 PM   #11
dahermit
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Quote:
if I drill the flash hold to a larger diameter, will that affect anything?
If you drill them with a #45 drill bit, and the decapping pin in the Lee dies still will not enter, the Lee decapper is too small and should be replaced by Lee. Note the correct size for a flash hole is .082 inch.
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Old March 31, 2013, 07:50 PM   #12
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Decaping Sellier & Bellot 9mm brass

A few years ago I bought a couple thousand 9mm brass and about 3 or 4% were Sellier & Bellot. I removed the primers in batches and started to prime them. I did notice that the Sellier & Bellot brass were harder to deprime than the others. I also had trouble priming them. Some would prime ok but learned most were a problem. I decided to remove these trouble makers from my pile.

I went through and sorted the Sellier & Bellot brass and used a RCBS tool designed to remove military crimps. This allowed me to save them and be successful in repriming them.

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Old April 1, 2013, 01:23 AM   #13
Fire_Moose
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Re: Decaping Sellier & Bellot 9mm brass

I'm surprised the Lee decapping pin broke. Its supposed to slide up.

The PP uniforming tools and all are great but you need the primer out first right?

Above someone said the decap pin is too small but I think he meant too big?

You've decapped other brass I'm assuming?

Pretty strange. I also agree about the s&b having tight PPs as well, blasted thru 1000 of them though.
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Old April 1, 2013, 02:18 AM   #14
thump_rrr
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I have never run across S&B 9mm myself but the .45 S&B that I usually see has normal flash hole sizing but tight lacquered primers.
I like the tight primer pockets myself.
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Old April 1, 2013, 09:19 AM   #15
93Harley
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Pin Problems

Upon even further investigation, I have discovered that the actual pin is not broken. The pin gets wedged into the flash hole so thightly by the force of the press, it actually pulls the pin from its seat in the body of the shaft. I tried adjust the punch pin higher in the die, but to get it deep enough to punch the old primer out, it still is deep enough to get wedged into the flash hole. I don't particularly relish the thought of drilling the flash holes on 3 pounds of brass, and may looking into getting the hand tool mentioned above that makes the flash hole the standard size...then running them through the press. Sounds like a project for a rainy day. Thank you for your help.
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Old April 1, 2013, 05:46 PM   #16
Old 454
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Try a lee universal decapping die, if they run into any problems they will slide up and save the pin. use the case sizer in station two, remove the decaping pin, to hold the shell tight when priming.
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Old April 3, 2013, 06:21 PM   #17
pathdoc
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This all explains the issues I always had with my one box of S&B in .303 British. Decapping was never a problem, but getting a new primer in (of any brand, but particularly CCI LRP) was a bastard.

However, I have oodles of brass by other manufacturers and right now it's just not worth buying a primer pocket reamer to deal with only 20 cases. They have been set aside.
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Old April 4, 2013, 06:29 PM   #18
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See if there might be a problem with the flash holes -

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Old April 4, 2013, 07:53 PM   #19
firewrench044
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Some of the newer cases have a smaller flash hole

I take my flash hole deburing tool and drill the hole out from the inside
of the case, no need to drill through the primer, your decaping die will
push the primer out now


I ran into this with some NATO marked 5.56X45 cases from Bosnia
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Old April 5, 2013, 04:11 PM   #20
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I toss S&B brass.

For me, S&B .45 ACP brass worked but had tight primer pockets. However, sometimes I would crush a primer when seating the primer due to tight primer pockets. .38 SPL would result in the case splitting when it was resized! That was a waste of time since I cleaned the case, resized it, and wasted a primer on my progressive reloader (and had to pull the bullet!). Now, I sort my brass more judiciously and cull the S&B brass.

I have to admit that I never tried to reload their 9mm cases. I haven't tried since things didn't work with the first two calibers. All S&B goes right into my scrap bucket. One day, I'll get .75 per pound for them...
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Old April 6, 2013, 09:55 PM   #21
93Harley
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Update

With over 500 cases, I couldn't see setting them aside, especially since they looked like good, solid brass. Spacecoast posted a link showing several rounds with small flash holes and that is exactly what I have run in to. The decapping pin fits through the flash hole but gets wedged at the full pull of the decapping stroke, so the pin cannot rise in the die. Instead, the pin gets wedged and pulls free on the shaft on the backstroke. Once you retrieve the pin from the cartridge, you can reinsert it back into the shaft of the pin and you're good to go. Went to Lowe's to check on a #45 drill bit. He had never hear of that, and I haven't either, so I bought a 5/64 drill bit which, if my math is right, will produce a hole .078 of an inch, which is pretty darn close. I mounted a piece of 1x4 on the platform of a table top drill press, drilled a pilot hole with the 5/64 drill bit, then followed that with a bit the size of the case. I simply placed the case into the hole and dropped the drill press and enlarge the flash hole size to .078. It took a couple of hours to finishe the cases. Was it a waste of time? Probably to the more experienced reloaders, but for me being a newbie, it was a learning experience. The more I handle the components, but more proficient I will become...at least that's the way I see it. Many thanks to those who took the time to offer their advise. I really do appreciate the help.
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