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Old August 21, 2009, 05:10 PM   #1
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at a loss ???

loaded some rounds for my sons new s&w m&p15 5.56. using IK military brass, the usual prepping, deprime,remove crimp,resize,trim,prime ,reload. question is got the first round stuck in the action could not clear. gun smith removed round said he never seen before. checked other loaded rounds and are ok. any ideas ?
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Old August 21, 2009, 05:13 PM   #2
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Missed the sizing step with that one? Don't know, just a guess.
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Old August 21, 2009, 05:29 PM   #3
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Seems unlikely it would hold the bullet then.

Could be the bullets need to be crimped and are inertially sticking into the throat. No idea why you had an extraction failure? Check the rim diameters to make sure they aren't too small for the extractor to get hold of on those cases?
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Old August 21, 2009, 08:17 PM   #4
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I have stuck rounds when I didn't have the sizing die set right. The only way to get them out was with a rod down the barrel.

There is a possibility that you might need a small base die for the MP. That is just a guess though what Unclenick stated could be it too.
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Old August 21, 2009, 08:32 PM   #5
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If they all worked but one I'd say you didn't get the handle pulled all the way down on that one. Or maybe there was debris on top of the shell holder that kept the case from going all the way in the die. You could also have crushed the shoulder a bit when seating or crimping.

I suggest running all your sized cases and loaded ammo through a case gauge. I find that to be easier than slamming the butt down on the bench while pulling the charge handle.
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Old August 21, 2009, 08:50 PM   #6
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Make sure you full length resize.
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Old August 21, 2009, 09:25 PM   #7
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Hi BG,

I have to ask some questions that will hopefully answer your questions!

Do you have the following gage: RCBS Case Gage or similar gage to determine the OAL and headspace? You need to know the headspace of your chamber so that you can properly set your full length die. Once this is determined and you have set the die properly, you can then move onto setting your bullet seating die using the same gage.

Your reloads will function flawlessly once you have known dimensions to work from.

Good luck!
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Old August 21, 2009, 10:02 PM   #8
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Several suggestions.

1. Lube the freaking holy heck out of that AR. (the smith is built very tight and takes 200-400 rounds to break it in and even then it should be really wet.)

2. Use only small base dies for anything semi automatic. (much better reliability in feeding and extraction)

3. Never try to use your forward assist unless you are in battle or it will just get stuck even more.

4. The pogo method is a great way to get stuck rounds out of an AR. (remove magazine, pull back on the charging handle while pounding the butt of the gun on the cement. The inertia strips the round every time unless you break the rim off the casing.) dont point the gun at your face while doing this.

5. Don't pay a gunsmith until you have tried REASONABLE solutions found on this and other gun forums.
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Old August 22, 2009, 12:31 PM   #9
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thanks for the replys. i did use my rcbs small base die to size with set down just to kiss the shell holder with my rock chucker handle all the way down. every round was trimmed to size and seated to 2.229" and a ligh crimp applied.
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Old August 22, 2009, 12:57 PM   #10
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What I've learned about setting headspace -

1. It is very important. As you know, too much cartridge headspace can either shorten brass life or result in case head separations the first firing! Too little headspace and you are going to have chambering problems, annoying with a bolt-action and potentially dangerous with semi-automatic actions.

2. The press/die manufacturer's instructions aren't always helpful. They shouldn't "strongly recommend" using a cartridge headspace gauge, IMO. They should flat-out say you aren't going to set it correctly by "touching the shellholder and backing off 1/4 turn" or similar, and that you need to buy a gauge!

For many cartridges, the difference between SAAMI min & max is only 0.006", and you aren't going to be able to discern that in repeated die setups. With a gauge, you can quickly see if you are in spec. (Which usually means safe, assuming your rifle is also in spec...)

If you're really fussy, you can even measure off the gauge base to the head of the brass (calipers and straightedge...) and set up something like 0.002" less than your rifle's actual headspace.

Or you can buy the RCBS or Hornady bullet micrometer thingies, etc.

I think the Wilson type cartridge headspace gauges are the way to go, and help verify that you are setting up the die correctly.
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Old August 22, 2009, 05:31 PM   #11
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In the future, if you use the "pogo" method to assist clearing the round, MAKE SURE YOU COLLAPSE YOUR STOCK FIRST!!!

I load for several AR's and use a Lyman cartridge gauge to adjust my dies to get the proper setback on the shoulder. Until I did, I had problems with rounds being difficult to chamber, like you describe. I have never needed SB dies and would only go to them as a last resort, not the first step.
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Old August 22, 2009, 07:17 PM   #12
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Agreed.....get yourself a case gauge and check your brass after resizing. It makes resizing so much easier and no frustration at the range.
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Old August 23, 2009, 09:00 AM   #13
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i did use my rcbs small base die to size with set down just to kiss the shell holder with my rock chucker handle all the way down
I think that's your problem. You do not have your FL die set up correctly. Without a gauge, the genaric way to set it up is to, Raise the ram, screw the die in until it touches the shell holder, Lower the ram, Screw the die IN 1/4 turn more. This will allow the press to "cam over" remove the slop within the press.
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