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Old April 3, 2009, 01:48 PM   #1
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9mm reloading troubles

I just started reloading 9mm for my Glock 17. To get straight to the point. my question is, do you have to load at close to maximum powder in order to get an automatic to cycle properly?
In my first batch of ammo, I tried to play it safe and keep my loads fairly light so I loaded up some speer 147 gr. TMJ's at about 5.5 grains of blue dot and the cartriges did not seem to have enough oomph to cycle the action, they shot accurately and consistently, but did not blowback and cycle the next round. Then I decided to go all the way to max load of about 6.1 grains of blue dot for my next load and this worked much better, but there was one out of ten that did not cycle. I also had trouble with blowback and cycling when I loaded 115 gr. round nose FMJ at about 7.4 grains of blue dot. Should I go ahead and maybe load at 6.3 grains with my147 gr. and 8+ grains with my 115 gr. or is that too dangerous?

I have tried to be very careful with my OAL and all of the other details, but does anyone think I might be doing something else wrong beside not having enough powder? Thanks
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Old April 3, 2009, 01:58 PM   #2
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I'm not familiar with Blue Dot, but any gun in proper working condition should cycle reliably with loads that are a fair amount below max. I wouldn't go beyond published maximum now, especially in a Glock barrel. Something else in your loads might be off. You said you're careful with the OAL, but what is it? And, does the G17 cycle properly with factory ammo?

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Old April 3, 2009, 04:08 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum.

The load data seems rather conflicted. Alliant maxes out at 5.8 grains of Blue Dot, but QuickLOAD shows even your 6.1 grain load just makes it to the bottom of the starting load pressure range and it is already substantially compressed. I'd say Blue Dot just isn't a very good powder choice for the 9 mm. Too slow, and this is a problem that gets worse as the bullets get lighter.

If you like Alliant powder or can get it more easily where you are, I would try Unique. QuickLOAD shows the Alliant recommended 4.3 grain load under the 147 grain bullet is at near the middle of the normal pressure range, which should cycle your gun more reliably. QuickLOAD also shows it giving more velocity than Blue Dot, contrary to what Alliant's site claims. I tend to believe the software over Alliant's data in this instance, just because the lower pressure it calculates matches what you are seeing by way of cycling problems. Unique will work better with your lighter bullets, too. It's only drawback is that most powder measures don't meter it all that well. Hodgdon HS-6 meters well, and would be a good choice for both bullets.
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Old April 3, 2009, 04:30 PM   #4
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Another new guy here so take this with a grain of caution but today I just shot my first 9mm reloads. I was using 3.2 gr of W231 with a 125 gr lead round nose and shot out of a CZ 75B which has had less than 1000 rounds shot through it.

The W231 had a very mild recoil and very low noise with that charge. Accuracy was so so but that could have been the fault of the Indian and not the arrows.

Out of the 30 only 2 failed to cycle the slide hard enough to cock it. This weekend I am going to load up 50 rounds with 3.4 gr and another with 50 with 3.6 gr. Max charge for W231 and 125 gr is 5.4 gr. I am just going to tweak it up a couple of grainsat a time till I get decent accuracy and reliable cycling.
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Old April 3, 2009, 04:30 PM   #5
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You might want to try Unique, Universal, Bullseye or similar......I load a 124 gr bullet for my G-17 and have had excellent reliability with both Unique and Universal with no FTF, FTE or anything else.......
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Old April 3, 2009, 05:42 PM   #6
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With 147 grain projectiles, I would definitely go for some W231/HP-38.

Between 115 and 139 grains, Unique seems to do best for me.
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Old April 3, 2009, 06:19 PM   #7
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I use Blue Dot for me "Blue-9" handloads for my 9mm carbines. 115 grain at 1550+ FPS.

Blue Dot will work for a 115 grain 9mm handgun load, but there really are better choices. (Muzzle flash at night is impressive with BD.) I wouldn't use it in a 147. Too slow and too compressed. For plinking I would just get some Titegroup.
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Old April 3, 2009, 07:15 PM   #8
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Thanks for the advice

Thanks to everyone for the advice.

It seems that I might need to just use blue dot for my lighter bullets, it did seem like a tight fit for all of that powder plus a big bullet in such a little shell. And it seems that no one thinks more powder is the answer so I will avoid that.

I am positive that my problem is a reloading problem since I have owned my G-17 for over ten years and put thousands of factory rounds through it without causing me a single mechanical failure. (it doesn't cycle for some women and children though, I always found that strange, limp wrist maybe?)

Could primers be a factor? I am using somewhat inexpensive Remington ones.

Or, how close does the correct overall lenght need to be? I have been using factory ammo of the same bullet size and type as my gauge.

Anyway, thanks again for all of the help.
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Old April 3, 2009, 08:25 PM   #9
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I use W231 or Titegroup with both 115g and 124g FMJ's. I had the same problem as you described. Try loading a few rounds at .1 or .2 g intervals. I ended up at about the mid range load to get my loads to cycle properly. I have used both Winchester and Wolf primers and had no issues there. OAL should be close to what the manual says paying close attention to the Minimum Length that could get you in trouble. One way to check to make sure your OAL is not too much is to field strip you gun and drop a loaded round in it, if it drops in with no problem you are good.
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Old April 3, 2009, 08:44 PM   #10
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Glocks are sprung pretty heavy, they need factory level reloads to function 100%
Ever notice the brass never flys far out of your Glock? Either load a little closer to max, or swap out your recoil spring, for a weaker one.
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Old April 4, 2009, 08:04 AM   #11
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If you're locked into Blue Dot, I can't help you, but if you check out Brian Enos' forum, you'll find than many of the top shooters like Ramshot Silhouette for 9mm.

With a 147 gr bullet, 4.3 gr of Silhouette gives me 870 fps and total reliability in my G17 & G19. You can go to 4.5 which Ramshot lists at 930 fps. Some guys go much hotter, but I don't need the extra speed.

BTW, Silhouette is that same as Winchester's Action Pistol powder according to the Ramshot reps at this year's S.H.O.T. Show, so you can use WAP load data.
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Old April 4, 2009, 08:41 AM   #12
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Just got through loading 900+ rounds for my G17, using 6.3 gr. of AA#5, pushing Precision Bullets 125gr. f.p. bullets. Haven't tried them yet, but everything else I ever reloaded for my G17 worked fine. I use AA#5, exclusively, for 9mm and .45ACP reloading.

If you're going to be loading on the light side, just use a lighter recoil spring.
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Old April 4, 2009, 09:14 AM   #13
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I load thousands of 9mm rounds.
Drop the blue dot and get some Aliaint Power Pistol. Load 5.9gn with a 124gn bullet and you will never look back.
Accurate, will always cycle and will put no abnormal wear on the rails or slide.
Trust me on this. I tried blue dot, green dot, AA#2, AA#7 and several more.
None loaded and shot as well as the Power Pistol.
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Old April 4, 2009, 10:12 AM   #14
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Bullseye. Gives you plenty of "snap" for the recoil needed for the pistol to work.
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Old April 13, 2009, 09:51 PM   #15
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unique powde

Anyone loading 124gn berry's plated with unique. How much powder did you use. I havnt bought the powder yet. Unique was recomended. I have 1000 124 plated from berrys and 2000 from precision delta coming for 124 gn. Just looking for powder suggustions and gn amounts per bullet. all for an XDM9. Thanks.
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Old April 14, 2009, 12:39 AM   #16
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9MM Loads

I don't load anything higher than 125gr bullits in 9MM. All I have read and tried at 147gr level is poor performance. I have several loads using Unique that work well with 115 and 125 GR bullets, FMJ not lead.
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Old April 14, 2009, 06:19 AM   #17
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For whatever it is worth since my last post I went to the Winchester/Hodgon/IMR website site and checked their data and I have bumped my charges up to 4.0 - 4.2 gr of 231 with a 125 gr hard cast LRN but I have not shot any of those yet.

There seems to be a lot of conflicting data out there on the 9mm cartridge. Using my Complete Reloading Guide for the 9mm and the Winchester chart in the back for 231 it gives 3.3 to 4.0 for a LRN, using the Lyman chart in the same book for a 121 gr LRN it has 3.0 to 4.0, using the Lyman cast bullet handbook it does not even list 231 and going to various other sites go over 5.0 gr which I assume is for a jacketed bullet.

Also I read that Angus Hobdell uses a 125 grain JHP over 4 grains of Vihtavuori N320.

I have a lot of Win 231 to run through before I can try it myself but just thought I would throw this out here in case any are interested.
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Old April 14, 2009, 08:15 AM   #18
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There seems to be a lot of conflicting data out there on the 9mm cartridge.
Definitely true. It has a lot to do with the small size of the case, the high pressure it runs at, the multitude of bullet weights, styles and construction available and the varying COALs of each load.

Alliant Power Pistol is a great powder, one of my favorite. But Alliant sucks for load data. In their current printed guides and on their website, every g/d bullet is a Speer Gold Dot.

What I like is when regular old reloaders share the load that has worked for them in an open forum. After you sift through all the folks who say each loader should develop his own load, and "there's no free lunch", I really like to see exact loads that people have built with success.

I don't take a load directly from someone else -- I use it as supporting evidence that it's perhaps a do-able load and that it's possibly safe. I continue to triple-check load data.

I have found that Power Pistol works well for me at 5.1gr behind a 125 gr cast LRN bullet, with a COAL of 1.140".

I also load a Berry's plated 124 grainer with success using Bullseye and Power Pistol. I don't use Unique in any caliber at my bench.
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Old February 16, 2014, 10:33 AM   #19
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Problem with 9mm using w231

I've been reloading my 9mm with w231 @4.9gn with cci primers 115 gn Rainer bullets. My problem is that in 2 different guns the round fires but stove pipes. The slide comes back far enough to cock the hammer but not eject the case. I'm using once fired brass and my OAL is to the book. What is going on cause at 4.9 I'm at max load. Any help is grateful
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Old February 16, 2014, 11:51 AM   #20
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Blue dot is to slow burning for 9mm. WW231 works great if you can find some.
As a result of the powder shortage I've been forced to experiment with powders I can find available. I like power pistol but have been saving it for my 10mm and 45ACP. loads also I found it to be less accurate in 9.
So far 5.0gr. of Autocomp or 4.8gr. of WSF under a 124gr. plated bullet have yielded the best accuracy out of my 2 CZ pistols.
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