The Firing Line Forums

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

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old December 17, 2009, 06:10 PM   #1
steve1147
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2009
Location: Valles Mines, Missouri
Posts: 142
Problem with 45acp reloads, HELP please

Hello! Just received my second Lee Pro 1000 press. Love both of them, but now have a problem.
I cast my own bullets with Lee Moulds and a Lee melting pot, I cast .38 and 45acp.both in micro-groove with Alox lube. Have cast, loaded and shot the 38/357 thousands of rounds with no problems.
Now the problem, The 45acp rounds I'm reloading are not chambering well or ejecting out of my Glock model 30. The COAL is correct, I even tried shortening it by 10/1000, I'm casting/loading a 230 double ogive lead/alloy bullet (90/5/5), my first 20 rounds I loaded 5.2 grains of Unique with CCI standard primers, had numerous failure to eject jams.
I fired 10 rounds of factory ammo then with no problem.
I then increased the powder to 5.9 grains and shortened the COAL by .010. Out of 20 I had numerous failure to chambers, failure of the slide to completely reseat, and at least 4 where's the spent cartridge was STILL in the chamber where the new live round should have been, WITH the slide still not seated correctly, about 1/8 to 1/4" shy of closing completely.
The gun is clean and meticulously maintained, was re-cleaned in the middle of this test, and I have a Storm Lake barrell, which I also tried along with the factory barrell.
Thanks, Steve W.
steve1147 is offline  
Old December 17, 2009, 06:33 PM   #2
QBall45
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 5, 2008
Location: South Central Minnesota
Posts: 583
Steve,
Sounds to me like what is needed is Lee's Factory Crimp Die aka FCD.

You will need a single stage press for this as the pro 1000 only has 3 holes.

Back out your current seating die till it nolonger puts any crimp on the case. Then adjust your seat depth to the correct depth.

Now follow the directions that are supplied with your FCD.

This should completely fix your problem. Well, at least it did for me and many others on this fourm.

I know this all means more stuff to buy...
QBall45 is offline  
Old December 17, 2009, 06:49 PM   #3
steve1147
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2009
Location: Valles Mines, Missouri
Posts: 142
Thanks Qball, but for now do you think it would help to just back-out the crimp on the seat/crimp die I have?
One thing I HAVE learned about reloading, there's ALWAYS something else to buy!!!!!!!!!!! Gotta love it.

PS. So if I have this right, unlike my revolvers, the front of the cartridge seats on the auto so it basically needs an edge, the COAL shouldn't matter that much if within range, and the crimp is allowing it to go too far forward and stick in the chamber? Also, my reloads are showing a very noticeable bulge from the bullet seat, but still measure out within limits, is this normal/acceptable in an auto reload?
http://www.dostplumbing.com/45_6.jpg
Thanks again, Steve W.

Last edited by steve1147; December 17, 2009 at 07:44 PM. Reason: Added pic of loaded cartridge
steve1147 is offline  
Old December 17, 2009, 10:59 PM   #4
chris in va
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 26, 2004
Location: Louisville KY
Posts: 13,629
You need the FCD. I have one for my 9mm, and let me tell ya...some of those seated boolits really bulge that case. All I have to do at that point is size with the die and all is well with the world. Couple thousand 9mm reloads and zero failures in my picky CZ. You don't have to crimp with the FCD, that feature can be backed all the way out and still size the round.

BTW according to my Lyman manual, a 225gr #2 alloy measured at 1.27" is 5.5gr minimum, 7.3gr max with Unique. I think you may be underloading it along with needing a FCD.

Each gun has a different chamber depth. I found with a TC 124gr boolit, the round had to be shortened to 1.04oal so the lead wouldn't make premature contact with the rifling. Normal FMJ for a 9mm is about 1.15 to 1.69. Have you made a 'dummy' round yet and dropped it in your barrel? If it sticks, you need to shorten it's oal.

But please do your own research, I'm just going on what I've learned in my very limited time casting and reloading.

Last edited by chris in va; December 19, 2009 at 02:16 PM.
chris in va is offline  
Old December 17, 2009, 10:59 PM   #5
azklmsr
Member
 
Join Date: December 17, 2009
Location: Arizona
Posts: 32
Easy fix

I'm betting the diameter at the mouth of your case is a bit large. The Lee FCD, or your current seating die will fix this.

1) measure your case diameter at the mouth. Look for .471 or smaller.

2) Back off the seating stem a bunch.

3) iterate turning the seating die in 1/8th of a turn until you get a slight taper crimp.

4) reset the bullet seating stem

Alternate method - this works really well

1) seat a completed round in the press and run to the top of the stroke
2) insert the sizing die (deprimer stem removed) until it just touches the case
3) lower the ram
4) turn the sizing die in about 1/2 turn

In this case, you'l just size the the flare off the case and you should be at the majic .471. Works great

Kurt
azklmsr is offline  
Old December 17, 2009, 11:20 PM   #6
Shoney
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 21, 2002
Location: Transplanted from Montana
Posts: 2,311
What is the bullet diameter out of the mold?

If it is greater than .452 in any direction, you may need to size the bullets. The FCD will do about the same thing except it squeezes the bullet inside the case. This can result in loose bullets as the brass will spring back while the lead remains sized down.
__________________
I pledge allegiance to the Flag - - -, and to the Republic for which it stands….Our Forefathers were brilliant for giving us a Republic, not a democracy! Do you know the difference??? and WHY?http://www.wallbuilders.com/LIBissue...les.asp?id=111
Shoney is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 01:09 AM   #7
Jim243
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 5, 2009
Location: Just off Route 66
Posts: 5,067
Have you thought maybe it's the Glock and not the bullets that might be the problem?? Can you try the same bullets in a non Glock gun???

The reason I suggest this is becasuse I thought their barrels where not fully supportive of the 45 ACP case. Also I thought you could not use lead or plated bullets in them because of the type of rifling they use in their barrels??

Just a thought.
Jim
Jim243 is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 01:34 AM   #8
Lost Sheep
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 24, 2009
Location: Anchorage Alaska
Posts: 3,340
Quote:
azklmsr
Easy fix
I'm betting the diameter at the mouth of your case is a bit large. The Lee FCD, or your current seating die will fix this.

1) measure your case diameter at the mouth. Look for .471 or smaller.
Good thought, azklmsr. And welcome to the forum.

You can accomplish much the same thing by taking the barrel out of the gun and taking a handful of cartridges you just loaded and seeing how easily and deeply they drop into the chamber. They should drop in (pretty much) by gravity alone and seat firmly with no play (push them in hard with your finger and see if they fit flush). They should then drop out by gravity, too. Or maybe just a little shaking. Then look and see if the lead bullet has been deformed at all by the rifling or anything in the chamber.

Molds for lead bullets are often a little oversized, and an oversized bullet will bulge a cartridge case, making it hard to chamber. My Dan Wesson .357 Mag has SAAMI spec chambers, but on the small side. Makes the gun more accurate (I think). But once, I loaded a box of bullets that were slightly oversized. The cases were bulged just enough that they would not chamber. They would chamber in my friend's Ruger Security Six, but not my DW. Most automatic shooters use jacketed or plated bullets and don't have the oversized problem, so Shoney's suggestion is a good one. Some people who want to avoid sizing their cast bullets for their autos buy their molds undersized for just that reason. And some moldmakers sell such molds to such loaders.

Good Luck, good shooting, and don't pinch your fingers in your press.
Lost Sheep is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 06:31 AM   #9
steve1147
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2009
Location: Valles Mines, Missouri
Posts: 142
Yes, I've tried factory ammo in this Glock. I've fired it a lot with factory in the past, and I ran 10 rounds through it during the testing with perfect results, couldn't get 3 of the reloads to go in a row.

I'm gonna hit a couple of the local shops today in search of the LFC die, if not there I'll order one from Midway, I've got way too much invested at this point for this NOT to work!!!

My reloaded cases measure .468 down close to the base, .472 at the bulge approx. 1/4" below the mouth, and .469 at the mouth, where it's also got a small inward crimp from the current seating die (I set the crimp to approximate what I've always done on the 38 and 357 loads, is this wrong?).
My cast and lubed Lee micro-band tumble lube bullets (230 RN) all run .451 to .452 at the base. My coal is 1.260 which I duplicated the length of the factory rounds it accepts well.

As I said above, I'll find and try the LFC die, and maybe bump the charge a little from the 5.9 of Unique, I also have Bullseye, WST, HS-6 and Universal if anyone thinks they would work better for this load.
Thanks! Steve W.
steve1147 is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 07:19 AM   #10
Whisper 300
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 29, 2006
Posts: 155
Steve,
Looks like the adage "You snooze-you lose" when it comes to me adding anything on this subject.
I too am a big fan of the Lee FCD- use it on all my cast bullet reloads, even revolver stuff, just to insure that they all fit in nice and easy.
Like you, I learned the hard way years ago when I started casting and a good 20% would not chamber fully or had other difficulties that were all fixed by runnning them thru the Lee.
Get one and don't look back.

Gary
Whisper 300 is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 09:59 AM   #11
PAdutchman
Member
 
Join Date: July 26, 2008
Posts: 41
Ditto on the FCD. I had the same kind of problem in my 45acp using cast bullets. I started running them through a FCD mainly for the resizing and all the problems went away. Rarely do I have any kind of cycling issues anymore.
PAdutchman is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 10:47 AM   #12
azredhawk44
Junior member
 
Join Date: September 28, 2005
Location: Mesa, AZ
Posts: 6,465
I appreciate that the FCD can fix problems for some people and I don't knock the product at all...

But it isn't necessary to run .45acp by any means.

-Flare the case just enough for your bullet to fit in it without shaving lead during the seating process.
-Seat the bullet, sans crimp. Get your desired OAL.
-Back out the seating plug on your seat/crimp die, tighten the crimp down 1/3-1/2 turn past current contact with the uncrimped case. Re-run the case, measuring for 0.470-0.471 outer diameter.
-Run the seating plug back down on this case so it contacts the seated/crimped bullet.

-Run a cartridge through your press at all stages. You should wind up with desired OAL and an ever-so-light crimp that leaves an outer diameter of 0.4705 or so.

That being said... my cast boolits come from Mastercast and I order 0.452 diameter. You need to make sure your cast boolits are coming out at a consistent diameter that isn't too large for your chamber to get the 0.4705 headspace diameter.

I've run probably close to 10-12K .45acp without a FCD.
azredhawk44 is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 12:29 PM   #13
confirmed shooter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 8, 2009
Location: reno, Nv.
Posts: 109
The Lee tappered crimp die will fix the problem. I was re-loading .45, and they worked in my old 1911, but would not even chamber in my new 1911. Just put them through the tappered crimp die and every-thing works fine. My groups got a little tighter also. charlie sierra
confirmed shooter is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 01:28 PM   #14
stiles
Junior Member
 
Join Date: December 17, 2009
Posts: 9
azredhawk44 has it right in my opinion. The only thing I'd expand on is you need to figure out what the correct OAL is for your barrel and your bullet, this may be very different than the OAL in the loading manual. What diameter are you sizing the bullet or what diameter are they dropping if your not sizing? Make a series of dummies starting at the max OAL and reduce by .020" till they fit your barrel (your trying to find the point where the ogive isn't jamming into the throat). Crimp them to .471" preferably in a separate standard taper crimp die and test em by hand in your barrel.

Of course when you reduce OAL you need to reduce the powder charge cause you reduced the case capacity.

For the record I can't stand the post sizer on the LEE FCD. If you need to size the bullet more, do it before you seat it. If you need more neck tension size the case more before you seat the bullet. The spring back rates of cartage brass and lead just doesn't work to keep proper neck tension if you size after the bullet is seated.
stiles is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 07:24 PM   #15
steve1147
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2009
Location: Valles Mines, Missouri
Posts: 142
I learn more on this forum than anywhere else, I tried adjusting my flare and crimp as suggested, but they still won't chamber properly, so I ordered the Lee factory crimp die, a single station press and a shell plate for about $60 including shipping. Wish it could be here NOW, but it probably won't show up 'till mid-week next week, so I'll post my results then.

PS. My buddy brought his original Army 1911 45acp out today, and it also refused to chamber these shells, but fired 30 rounds of factory like a machine gun.

I give up 'till I get the Lee FCD, all the adjustments don't seem to help, ONLY thing I didn't try is crimping them even MORE, doubt that would help, would probably just make the "bulge" worse.
Thanks! Steve W.
steve1147 is offline  
Old December 18, 2009, 11:28 PM   #16
Ivan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 14, 2009
Posts: 141
Here is an idea: Get yourself a dry erase marker and put stripes on the side of the case. Try to chamber the round and see where the markings have been rubbed off.

There is another possibility: The edge between the chamber and leade may have an overly sharp edge. If it shaves lead or jacket material, the first few rounds may chamber and fire just fine, but gradually (about 10-15 rounds in my gun) enough garbage accumulates that the slide won't go into battery.

Perhaps you are not seating the bullets deep enough? Keep in mind that the OAL depends on the bullet you are using.
Perhaps (and this happens quite a lot with lead bullets and plated bullets) your bullet being seated and crimped at the same time is leaving a ring of shaved lead ahead of the case mouth?

BTW, I don't believe the factory crimp die will solve your problem. A standard taper crimp seating die should reduce the case enough. Even a roll crimp die will work well enough.

- Ivan.

Last edited by Ivan; December 18, 2009 at 11:35 PM. Reason: Yet one more idea.
Ivan is offline  
Old December 19, 2009, 02:46 PM   #17
chris in va
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 26, 2004
Location: Louisville KY
Posts: 13,629
Quote:
A standard taper crimp seating die should reduce the case enough. Even a roll crimp die will work well enough
That's the thing though. I'm still very new to reloading, but I did some measurements using the seating die crimp vs. the FCD, and the seating die did nothing to reduce the 'bulge' from the bullet in the case. I adjusted it from no crimp to extreme, same thing. It was considerably out of spec. I then ran it through my FCD and the dimensions were back to proper diameters.

Jes' sayin.
chris in va is offline  
Old December 19, 2009, 08:02 PM   #18
steve1147
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2009
Location: Valles Mines, Missouri
Posts: 142
I have to go along with the majority of replys, I've tried all the adjustments recommended, experimented on my own, and still have problems.
I ordered the Lee FCD and a single station press for it, should arrive Tuesday. I'll let you all know the results!
Thanks! Steve W.
steve1147 is offline  
Old December 19, 2009, 11:18 PM   #19
Ivan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 14, 2009
Posts: 141
Hmmm.... If it is the bulge where the bullet has swelled the case, are you sure the diameter of the bullet is correct for the caliber? This should not be happening if the bullet is .451 or .452. Perhaps the bullets are .454 such as for a .45 Colt round?

If you guys are able to get the round back down to proper diameter with a factory crimp die, perhaps I need to get one also even though I have never encountered the problem being described here. It might be worth experimenting just to see the effects on a loaded round.

- Ivan.
Ivan is offline  
Old December 20, 2009, 02:24 PM   #20
Bronco4me
Member
 
Join Date: November 6, 2006
Posts: 93
I have never had to use a FCD to make .45 work. I did have issues with I changed over from a single stage to a the LNL AP, but once I properly adjusted my dies everything feeds and shoots again. Are you sure you are completely resizing the round on stage 1???
Bronco4me is offline  
Old December 21, 2009, 10:40 AM   #21
twice barrel
Member
 
Join Date: November 11, 2009
Posts: 98
Steve,

Just curious; have you ever mic'd your bullets? If not, do it just after you cast them and then a few days later. Many times an alloy will continue to expand a few days after being dropped from the mold. Actually this can be good depending upon your bore. A revolvers forcing cone can handle this but often autos cannot feed the loads, especially one's built to tight tolerances.

Regards,

TB
twice barrel is offline  
Old December 21, 2009, 05:42 PM   #22
steve1147
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2009
Location: Valles Mines, Missouri
Posts: 142
Just curious; have you ever mic'd your bullets? If not, do it just after you cast them and then a few days later. Many times an alloy will continue to expand a few days after being dropped from the mold. Actually this can be good depending upon your bore. A revolvers forcing cone can handle this but often autos cannot feed the loads, especially one's built to tight tolerances.

Regards,

TB



Yes, and just did it again, once with bullets cast and lubed last week, and then again with a group of 5 just cast and lubed last night, all fall between .450 and .451 at the base, my Lee FCD and separate single station press should arrive today or tomorrow. I realize a few here think this shouldn't be necessary, but I'll decide that after it arrives and I try it out for myself. My 9mm and 40s&w's also have that bulge, but it hasn't caused a problem yet, but if this works as others have said, I'll be ordering dies for them as well if for nothing more than cosmetic reasons and a little more peace of mind.
Thanks! Steve W.
steve1147 is offline  
Old December 22, 2009, 12:59 AM   #23
browningsr50
Junior Member
 
Join Date: June 4, 2009
Posts: 2
45 reloads

I had some of the same problems reloading my .45 I switched powder to bullseye because of the shape of the powder throws a more even charge. Next I ordered the FCD die. I decided to just buy Berry's plated bullits instead. I haven't had anymore problems. One thing i might say is be careful reloading for an auto is picky. A wheel gun is more forgiving on the crimp and such. A stuck bullit in a barrel can result and can be bad news needless to say.
browningsr50 is offline  
Old December 22, 2009, 03:50 PM   #24
steve1147
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 5, 2009
Location: Valles Mines, Missouri
Posts: 142
Got the Lee FCD

OK! Got the Lee Factory Crimp Die today with a shellholder, along with their cheap $20.00 single station press to go with it since my presses are the Lee Pro 1000, only 3 dies.

I shortened my COAL to 1.225" from my previous 1.260" loading the Lee Micro-Band 230 grain double ogive bullets I cast of 90/5/5 with Alox tumble lube, set the FCD for a fairly big crimp and full resizing, and did as a 4th step off the main press, still loading 5.9 grains of Unique (which I MAY bump-up slightly).

WALLAH!!! Loaded and fired 50 rounds with NO Failures of any kind! I'm a happy camper right now! I've got 300 empty cases being cleaned right now, I'll load them the same, and see if my buddy can bring out his original army 1911 tomorrow, and run a bunch through it and the Glock and report back.
THANKS EVERYBODY!
Steve W.

PS....This reloading stuff IS a progressive disease, there's SO MUCH to learn and SO MUCH to BUY!!! I don't think I'll EVER have "all I want".

Last edited by steve1147; December 22, 2009 at 03:53 PM. Reason: Deep Thoughts.....
steve1147 is offline  
Old December 23, 2009, 11:25 AM   #25
QBall45
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 5, 2008
Location: South Central Minnesota
Posts: 583
Steve,
Glad to here you've solved the problem. Something so easy to fix can be a nightmare for a new reloader. Can you imagine life without a resource like the internet & such places as TFL? I know I would have had a much more difficult time when I started if it were not for TFL & the help I received here.

Go nuts! Load till your arm falls off. Then go shoot it all up just so you can load more. It truely is addictive.
QBall45 is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

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 02:08 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2018 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.09770 seconds with 8 queries