Case Shavings with a Roll Crimp


Kramer Krazy
March 7, 2006, 09:52 PM
I attempted my first reloads of 44 mag and ran into an issue that I can't find addressed anywhere in my manuals or in searches on the THR. What is happening is that I'm getting a really fine shaving of the case at the opening when I roll crimp the bullets in. I am using Remington once-fired brass, an RCBS Rockchucker Supreme press, Brass Plus brand 240 gr L-SWC, and an RCBS carbide 3-die set. The bullets have the cannelure and wax coating and I slightly belled the case opening. OAL = 1.605".

These shavings are right at the lip of the case opening, and some could be pulled off of the loaded cartridge in almost a complete loop. I tried lightening the crimp, but the shavings are still there unless there is practically no crimp at all. A little more crimp didn't help, either. I also tried to adjust the seating of the bullet in the case, up and down, but this didn't make a difference. I have no idea how to get this copper shaving to quit. Anyone have some suggestions?

If you enjoyed reading about "Case Shavings with a Roll Crimp" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
March 7, 2006, 09:58 PM
Are you seating and crimping in the same step?
I'd try belling the case a little more. It's easy to get caught in the game of barely expanding the case mouth (so the brass lasts longer) and causing bullet shaving/scraping.

March 7, 2006, 10:01 PM
I misread your post. Sounds like you are getting very small brass rings. Have seen those from time to time. Have you tried deburring or trimming the outside of case mouth to remove sharp case edge?

Good shooting and be safe.

The Bushmaster
March 7, 2006, 10:09 PM
I have been noticing that for 20 years and have figured out that it is just my lousy job of removing the burrs after trimming. Except when I notice them and I hadn't trimmed the case...If you are experiencing just a few and I might add, very small amount of shaved brass (slightly curved [moon sliver] shaped), I wouldn't worry about it...By The Way...I load only jacketed bullets...Some loss of brass during the crimping process, especially with roll crimp, isn't that uncommon. If it bothers you, go to a Lee Factory Crimp Die (FCD)...:)

March 8, 2006, 03:22 PM
You do not want to Crimp (even minimally) swagged (soft) lead bullets
(which I believe most all Lead SWC's are. )

Just remove the bell you put in to get the bullets in without shaveing them on the way in.
ie Return the case to "sized diameter"

If you crimp hardly at all, it will shave that cannelure right off the bullet and they will blow right on through without takeing the rifeling.
Bad Accuracy and even tumbling.

If you are using Soft Lead SWC's you are going for accuracy, not power and should be able to keep below 1000 fps while not require crimping to build up steam.

If you are using HARD cast Lead 240 SWC's.....

Tell me where you find them

I couldn't
and wound up with a leaded up Super Redhawk and lousy accuracy
doing pretty much what you described

March 8, 2006, 04:10 PM
I read and reread your post and I do believe you are getting shavings because you have not belled the case mouth sufficently. Adjust your expander die approx 1/2 turn and see if that stops that lead ring. This also had happened to me when I started loading 40 years ago.

March 8, 2006, 04:11 PM
Think you still have a few things to learn about loading and shooting lead bullets. Swaged lead bullets are NOT more accurate, they are just CHEAPLY made and they are soft because trying to swage hard lead causes more wear on the dies. I totally AVOID swaged lead bullets! Cast bullets are typically harder than swaged bullets and degree of hardness is dependent on the alloy used. Can't give you a complete explanation in a couple of paragraphs but more reading on cast vs swaged bullets via good references would be helpful. Try to find a copy of Lyman Cast Bullet manual or similar booklet. I cast my own bullets in H&G molds and lube them with NRA formula lube (50% ALOX, 50% beeswax). Shoot such bullets (non-gas checked) at velocities of 800-900 fps in .45 ACP without leading. Shoot similar bullets at velocities of 1100 fps and 1425 fps thru .44 Mag pistols with no detectable leading for 100 rounds between cleanings. Do some research and try again. Cast bullets can be very finicky. You MUST clean barrel thoroughly before shooting cast bullets if jacketed bullets have been fired thru it previously! Failure to do so will usually give horrible leading. Good luck.

Good shooting and be safe.

Kramer Krazy
March 9, 2006, 11:21 AM
I'm not too sure how "hard" or "soft" these bullets are, but I think Midway has a description of them on their website (which I can't get to from work). They are "Brass Plus" brand 240 gr L-SWC BB bullets. I set my roll-crimp to be a little lighter than the factory PMC 44 Spl L-SWC ammo that I had laying around. The cases were belled plenty for the tapered bottem bullets, which resulted in absolutely no lead shavings. Seating the bullets were easy....nice and smooth. As for shooting performance.......they shot great...really nice. I was happy with the accuracy for the way I was shooting them. I shot about 40 of them through my freshly cleaned Colt Anaconda, and my wife, Missashot, shot the other twenty through her matching Colt Anaconda. There were no signs of leading, but the loads were quite smokey. Here's what we shot....

Bullets: "Brass Plus" 240 gr L-SWC
Brass: Once-shot Remington
Primer: Winchester WLP
Powder: Winchester #231; 7.7 gr

My reloading manual stated 6.0-6.5 gr for this load, but I found another poster using 8.2 gr of #231, and Winchester's website just states not to exceed 11.0 gr of #231 with a L-SWC. I know most people use Winchester's #296, and I'll probably get some of that, soon, but I only had the #231 handy (45 ACP and 38 Spl). The 7.7 gr was a nice moderate load between a factory 240 gr L-SWC 44 Special and a 240 gr JHP Magnum load in "feel" for recoil. Missashot sure liked them.....I just wish my chrony would work inside so I could tell you what the velocity was with them. :banghead:

March 9, 2006, 09:51 PM
"Swaged lead bullets are NOT more accurate, they are just CHEAPLY made ..."

Swaged lead bullets are fine for lower velocity and even preferred. They obturate correctly at the low pressures used in many target games.
148 HBWC, and even DEWC are a prime example. 185 and 200 gr SWC for .45 are another. The soft lead is needed for the low pressure used in the typical target load.
Above about 1000 ft/s they lead like hell. A harder alloy can and should be used at the higher velocity.

March 9, 2006, 10:08 PM
According to Midway's specs, this is a hard cast bullet:

Alloy:6% antimony, 2% tin, 92% lead
Hardness:lab certified consistent with 6-2 alloy

If you enjoyed reading about "Case Shavings with a Roll Crimp" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!