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Old July 26, 2013, 02:50 PM   #1
bikerbill
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Aluminum cases

Stopped at Cabela's this morning in a futile search for ammo ... but something did catch my eye... they had a fair amount of 9mm JHP with aluminum cases, at $13.99 for 50 ... Felt like I'd been slipped into the WayBack Machine ...

Didn't get any because I've never fired aluminum-cased ammo and didn't want to risk any of my nines on potentially crappy cartridges ... anybody familiar with aluminum cases? Should I be concerned or go back tomorrow and scarf up all I can carry?
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Old July 26, 2013, 05:24 PM   #2
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Well, CCI Blazer ammunition (some of it) is aluminum cased and since it's CCI I supect it works ok.

I don't use it because I reload but if I wind up shooting at a range that doesn't let me police my brass I'd give it a try.
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Old July 26, 2013, 05:33 PM   #3
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I bought around 1500rds of the blazer 9mm aluminum case for range ammo becasue I don't reload and it was dirt cheap. Never had any failures and it was clean and accurate. I'd go for it.
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Old July 26, 2013, 06:18 PM   #4
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how's alum gonna hurt steel?
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Old July 26, 2013, 06:30 PM   #5
Dfariswheel
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CCI started making this back in the 70's or early 80's.
Some of the early stuff was even made in defense type ammo, although probably a little lighter loaded.
I still have a few boxes of .45ACP loaded with the Speer 200 grain jacketed hollow point "Flying ashtray" bullet and some .38 Special +P loaded with the 158 grain lead, semi wadcutter, hollow point.

Some of the aluminum cases do split occasionally, but not often. Of several thousand rounds in assorted calibers I had about two that failed to fire.

I did have one 9mm handgun that was totally unreliable with aluminum ammo.

It was primarily intended for low cost practice ammo, and the primers are a special type that prevent attempting to reload the cases.
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Old July 26, 2013, 06:32 PM   #6
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Bill - I've used it in both a Ruger SR9c and a P95. No problems at all...went bang every time. Usually - at least before the current panic set in - it was a cheap but reliable practice ammo. I've shot mostly Blazer aluminum cases. Also have a bunch in 38 special for my S&W model 10-5. Works like a charm.

One plus - it's much lighter than brass. I can feel the difference in weight.

I frankly like it over lacquered steel cases like Brown Bear.
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Old July 26, 2013, 06:50 PM   #7
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Blazer aluminum used to be my go to ammo until the price increased. I have shot thousands of rounds through my cZs and BHPs with nary an issue.
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Old July 26, 2013, 07:27 PM   #8
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Shot gobs of it......never a problem.
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Old July 26, 2013, 10:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
and some .38 Special +P loaded with the 158 grain lead, semi wadcutter, hollow point.
Have you ever put those over a chronograph? I happened into a couple cases of it a few years ago for six bucks a box. couldn't pass it up for that even before ammogeddon struck. Now, with the lack of almost anything in 38 Spcl +P defensive ammo I have been carrying it in my LCR on the occasions that I do carry the Ruger. I shot about 150 rounds through the LCR before I loaded it up for carry without a sign of trouble. It is accurate out of the Ruger plastic snubbie, and recoil does feel about right for +P. Just wondering how close it actually is to the 158 gr LSWHP "FBI" load of other makers.
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Old July 27, 2013, 02:52 AM   #10
FrankenMauser
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I shot many thousands of rounds of Blazer aluminum, in the '90s. It's fine.



Quote:
how's alum gonna hurt steel?
Ask an aircraft mechanic that question, and you're likely to get slapped.

In the case of Blazer aluminum ammo, it doesn't really matter, though. They coat the casings with a sealant, to prevent the aluminum from being a problem. Even so...

Aluminum has many ways of damaging steel. Some of the more common issues:
It can pick up abrasives in its porous surface, and abrade the steel with the contaminants.
It can also oxidize and turn itself in one nasty abrasive material, a.k.a.: Corundum (Ruby / Sapphire). (Aluminum oxide sand paper comes to mind.)
And, it can also react with the steel, causing galvanic corrosion. With the presence of moisture, the reaction caused by the combination of steel and aluminum is often described as "aggressive".



Just a footnote in regards to my 'getting slapped' comment: When it comes to aircraft, aluminum almost always beats steel. It isn't the soft, benign metal most people think it is.
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Old July 27, 2013, 03:48 AM   #11
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Just speaking gun terms. I got u.
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Old July 27, 2013, 10:20 AM   #12
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Works without a hitch in my 9, 40 and 45 semis.
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Old July 27, 2013, 10:30 AM   #13
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Other than being very weak (recoil felt close to 38 +P) I had no problems with the stuff in .357 Mag.

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Old July 28, 2013, 05:19 AM   #14
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My 9mm carry gun is loaded with Blazer ammo from a run made quite a while back using 124 grain Gold Dots. Stored in controlled temp/humidity, this ammo works 100% and is at least 10 years old now. I bought 3 cases of this stuff and have never had a problem with chambering, firing, or ejecting although I've seen some earlier production 357 that caused extraction issues.
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Old July 28, 2013, 05:28 AM   #15
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They've been making the stuff for about 30 years...maybe more. I suspect any problems would have showed up by now.

And aluminum cartridge case, isn't likely to hurt a steel handgun. Neither is a steel cartridge case for that matter, but that's a different subject.
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Old July 28, 2013, 12:42 PM   #16
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I have shot a lot of it over the years, Mo problems.
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Old July 28, 2013, 01:20 PM   #17
damienph
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Herters aluminum 9mm

I got three boxes of the "Herters" blue nylon clad aluminum case ammo included in a trade for a pistol a few months ago that the guy said he bought at Cabelas. The headstamp is CCI, same as the Blazer except I've never seen the blue bullets before. I shot a box of it in my Hi-Power and in my old Ruger P85- No problems, gave the other two boxes to my son; he shot it in his XD9SC. Again, no problems.
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Old July 28, 2013, 02:57 PM   #18
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I have had problem with aluminum cases in any of my autos. The only problem is with sticking in my revolvers.
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Old July 28, 2013, 07:20 PM   #19
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Aluminum cases

Our indoor shooting range will not allow aluminum or steel casings....period!
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Old July 28, 2013, 11:36 PM   #20
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Quote:
Our indoor shooting range will not allow aluminum or steel casings....period!
That's because they make more money by recycling brass, and want to take you for every penny possible.
Find a new range.
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Old July 29, 2013, 08:45 AM   #21
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Quote:
That's because they make more money by recycling brass, and want to take you for every penny possible.
Find a new range.
Plus they don't want to bother sorting out the aluminum/steel from the brass.

I've had no issues with the Cabela's Herter's aluminum case in .40S&W. Saves you a few bucks over brass and if you don't reload why not save a few bucks?
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Old July 29, 2013, 09:23 AM   #22
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I don't use them because I reload, the exception is 380s and 25 acps, I smash my fingers trying to load those on my progressive Dillon RL 1000.

So I buy blazers and similar ammo for those two. Normally Aluminum cases. They work find.

Problem comes with trying to reload aluminum cases, they are elastic like brass and don't work well. I've seen guys try to load them and end up with a lot of split cases.

But for cheap practice ammo for those who don't reload, aluminum cases work quite well.
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Old July 29, 2013, 05:56 PM   #23
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There's no problem shoot aluminum cases. Some ranges might have an issue with it...check your local range policies. Most ranges make a killing by either selling, or reloading spent brass. Separating aluminum and brass casings from each other just adds another step to the sorting process.

As an aside, the range I frequent most, they sell their own reloads for use on the range, (you can, however, use whatever ammo you want there, not just theirs). But you aren't allowed to police brass if you shoot their stuff. If you do, they'll hit you with a 15% surcharge because they say the price is discounted to account for the brass they'll pick up and use again. The only time I ever use their ammo is if I'm renting a gun to try out. In that case, they require that you use their ammo.
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Old July 29, 2013, 10:57 PM   #24
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A review on Herter's 9mm CCI/Blazer aluminum ammo.
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Old July 29, 2013, 11:23 PM   #25
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In my experience, it doesn't seem to be as resistant to bullet setback/crimp jump as brass-cased ammunition. I've not had trouble with crimp jump because I haven't shot much Blazer aluminum through revolvers, but I have noted setback with aluminum-cased ammunition used in autopistols.

Some autopistols do not seem to "like" it. My CZ75B will falter about once every 50 rounds when I'm using Blazer aluminum but seems to be 100% with brass-cased ammunition.

No issues with any of my other pistols and I've put thousands of rounds downrange with good results. I used to buy a lot of it because it used to be a very good deal compared to brass-cased ammuntion. However the prices have gradually climbed and for the past few years I haven't been able to find any real deals on it.
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