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Old February 5, 2017, 01:47 AM   #1
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Glock bulge or smile

New Reloader: Glock Bulge or Smile

I’ve learned through research starting my reloading journey that Glock’s and other semi autos have unsupported chambers. I now understand the only fully supported chamber is a revolver. Please don’t go there.

My question is: Why does Redding only offer their Grx die in .40SW? Why not 9MM or .45? Is it because the latter are slightly lower PSI?

Common sense would dictate if these chambers are unsupported or less supported that all brass fired from these chambers regardless of cartridge would have the same bulge or swelling. Is it dangerous to reload fired brass from these chambers in other calibers other than .40 without a Redding Grx type resizing die? Safety first!

Is there another die manufacturer that has an answer? Or, do I need to be concerned with reloading brass that is not .40SW from unsupported chamber manufactures when I am scrounging for brass at the range? Thanks for your help.
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Old February 5, 2017, 01:51 AM   #2
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The grx does come in 45.

9 can't be run through one because it has a slight taper to it

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Old February 5, 2017, 01:53 AM   #3
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Correction, redding doesn't have a grx for 45, but Lee has a bulge buster, that is the same thing

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Old February 5, 2017, 02:57 AM   #4
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9mm can't be run through one because it has a slight taper to it
45 ACP doesn't have as much pressure, so yes, that may be why Redding doesn't make one.

I have Lee Bulge Busters for 40/10mm and 45 ACP. They work great (I don't load 40 S&W; I load 10mm). I have Glocks 20sf & 29sf. With their stock barrels, they bulge the brass something fierce. The bulge buster straightens out the brass. It makes for more brass prep work though.

I went with Lone Wolf barrels and that helped a lot too
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Old February 5, 2017, 07:51 AM   #5
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You are not going to like the price.
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Old February 5, 2017, 08:53 AM   #6
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Holy Cow---$850 to iron out cases! You can buy a WHOLE LOT of once fired non bulged brass for that.
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Old February 5, 2017, 10:02 AM   #7
Jim Watson
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Yes, but when it's gone, its gone.
You can support the Casepro by roll sizing your friends' bulged brass for a fee.
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Old February 5, 2017, 11:19 AM   #8
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For that kind of money, you can buy another pistol, one that doesn't leave the brass in need of special treatment before reloading.

I know people make dies/tools to restore the brass fired in Glocks to usable condition, but I am not comfortable with that. Cases bulged badly go in my scrap bin.

Your gun, your call, but I won't risk it.

Now, somebody will probably be along in a bit with a tale of how they have reloaded and shot 50K bulged cases and never had a single problem. That's wonderful. But it only takes once. I've seen what happens when a case lets go. Even though the shooter MAY escape without injury, the gun never does. Sometimes, its even fatal.
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
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Old February 6, 2017, 03:44 PM   #9
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'Punch' or Orifice dies like the ones described in the first couple posts are OK,
But they lack the ability to restore extraction grooves, straighten extraction lips.

The die plate case roller does both, along with resizing the bottom of the case, pushing case 'Bloat' back in where it belongs, taking the feed ramp bulge out of the case.

This same machine will push the sides of rifle cases back where they belong after being fired in 'Sloppy' or through rifles with unsupported rear chambers (most semi-autos).

This roller allows you to restore the lower case, extraction groove to SAAMI specification, allowing the ammo to cycle just like factory ammo.
This machine was invented specifically for 'Speed Guners' racing the clock and can't afford a failure to feed.

An unintended side benifit of a case roller on pistol brass,
Cracked brass chirps like a bird, sounds right off when rolled letting you know about the defect.
If you have loaded very much pistol ammo, you know a cracked case WILL slip into the reloader from time to time and won't show up until you seat the billet or do final inspection...

The price is excessive for all but the most dedicated reloaders,
But when you hit a certain level of volume reloading, or competition, it's actually a time/match saver.

Just another option to keep in mind *IF* the volume/reliability of your ammo is a concern.
Running automated at about 700 cases an hour, it will live for more than 20 years (mine has with no signs of giving up anytime soon)
And 700 cases an hour will keep up with all but industrial volume case reconditioners...

For those NOT making SAAMI specification cases, or don't have an issue with case bloat, disregard.
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Old February 8, 2017, 06:15 PM   #10
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I own three glocks, two in 9mm and one in .45 acp. I have reloaded and fired thousands of rounds out of them and never seen the bulge in my cases. I reload and fire the same cases in other guns I own. As long as you stick to data from a good manual or from the powder manufacturer you will not have a bulge issue in a properly functioning Glock. All my Glock fired brass resizes fine in my Dillon and Hornady dies. Load and shoot some ammo before you buy equipment to solve a problem you most likely will not have.
If you find bulged brass at the range throw it away. I have seen badly bulged 9mm I suspect was fired in a gun of a different caliber or a malfunctioning 9.
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Old February 8, 2017, 06:43 PM   #11
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If I remember right, the Glock Bulge is most pronounced in 40 S&W, as it has the most unsupported chamber. I reload for my 40, and have the Lee Bulge Buster. Works great. I also bought a Wilson 40 S&W barrel as I wanted to shoot lead, and the Wilson is rifled rather than the Glock's hex bore. The Wilson chamber is closer to fully supported, much like a 45. I don't have pictures of the barrels side by side, but the difference is noticeable.
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Old February 8, 2017, 07:06 PM   #12
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I don't know. Call Redding and ask. They are pretty easy to get along with. Usually very helpful.
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Old February 10, 2017, 11:17 AM   #13
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I don't get bulge in my 9mm or .45acp glock. I do see bulging in some range pickups but no idea what they were fired from or what kind of loads. I just toss them on the inspection stage
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Old June 25, 2019, 09:15 AM   #14
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I have some base bulging on .40 S & W cases fired in a Taurus 101. Using a RCBS small primer pocket sizer (which goes where a shellholder woudl fit) I press decapped brass into a Lyman carbide sizer die. It will not go all the way through. I then do the next case that will push out the first one (you remove the decapping rod). The bulge is removed. Some cases will form a "belt" and will not go all the way through the sizer die. Using a rod, I tap them out and recycle..not to be used again.
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Old June 25, 2019, 04:28 PM   #15
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Ok. First off you said you are a newbie. And that’s fine, the most fun is in learning anyhow.
But to answer your question if you’re reloading for a glock gen 3, 4 or 5 you’ll have no glock bulging problems anyhow. That was gen 1’s and 2’s.
And sure there’s company’s making and selling all kind of unnecessary items and they’re making big bucks off it too.
I shoot and reload for a glock 22 gen 4 and loaded thousands upon thousands out of a RCBS with RCBS 40 dies and never a single problem in maybe 25 years.
Bottom line is shoot and reload for a gen 3-4 or 5 and you’ll have no problems. Glock has corrected the unsupported chambers.
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Old June 25, 2019, 10:44 PM   #16
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Early Glocks had more unsupported chambers. I have 3 Gen3's: a pre-1998 9mm, 2011 40SW and 2018 45 ACP that do not bulge cases. The article in the following link has a photo 1998 vs. 2009.

If you bought a Glock in the past 20 years it is a non-issue.

If you really are bulging brass (and can measure it), there are aftermarket rifled barrels that won't bulge brass and can handle cast bullets too. Lone Wolf Dist. is one.
If you are not bulging brass (you do not have a 20 year old Glock 40_S&W; then you don't need one.
Read this article and others. Other calibers were never involved (guilt by association was presumed; it was not contagious to the other calibers).

Search for photos of Glock "smile" which is bigger bulge, and, not safe, and I would reject on inspection.

Last edited by Marco Califo; June 26, 2019 at 11:16 PM. Reason: To two too many typos; space;
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Old June 26, 2019, 10:17 AM   #17
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Marco has it exactly right.
The Glock bulge issue was from early .40 caliber guns. I had an early gen 3 G-35 with a very sloppy chamber and feed ramp cut way too deep into the chamber. Very inaccurate gun too. The 9mm's and 10mm's (Glocks best calibers) were always solid.
Today it's a non issue.

And just an FYI, read Lee's safety warning about how once brass is bulged, it is permanently weakened in the bulge area, even after a trip through the Bulge Buster.
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