Risks of using reloaded ammo VERY dangerous?


February 6, 2007, 04:22 AM
Sorry for asking, I'm just a dumb newbie.

Reloads are cheap so I can't help but notice them. However, I'm honestly worried about using them. For one, it will void the warranty of my handgun. But that isn't my main concern. My main concern is on the likelihood of a reloaded round making my gun explode, causing injury to myself. I know that the same can happen with new ammo, but just not on the same scale.

For example, if I rapid fire my gun and one of them turns out to be a squib shot that doesn't leave the barrel, and the next shot I fire a split second later will hit the bullet caught in the barrel, it would be dissasterous.

I know that a lot of people here make reloads, but I just want an honestly opinion on the risks of damage please. I would really appreciate it.

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February 6, 2007, 06:19 AM
Welcome to the forum!

I started handloading in 1960 and have loaded over 100,000 cartridges.

Of the cartridges I have loaded, I have had less than 10 failures to fire because of bad primers, only 3 squib pistol cartidges (insuficient powder thrown by the powder measure in a progressive press), and NO KABOOMS.

I have fired less than 5000 factory cartidges (rimfire not included). I have had over a dozen factory loads which failed to fire because of bad primers, a few lightly charged factory cartrides, and about 2 dozen factory cartridges which were definite overloads, but no Kabooms. I did have a box of 12 ga ammo that had undersized brass that split upon firing and caused damage to the semi-auto shotgun chamber (discovered this when loading became erratic and examination of fired shells showed problem).

If you read up on loading, follow the standard safety procedures while loading, and use good components, you should have no problems. I have read many dozens of posts where factory ammo has been the cause of Kabooms

February 6, 2007, 06:30 AM
Kabooms happen because of sloppy people. A rifle cartridge filled with pistol powder, over charging etc. I've shot at least a thousand rounds of it from a friend I trusted but he was as ...meticulous... as that character in Tremors. :D

I would not easily trust anyone elses reloads. Oh My Rifle! Oh My Ducuts! :)
Well not without knowing them reasonably well. :scrutiny:

February 6, 2007, 06:38 AM
Just do it. It will pay for itself very quickly and you can make whatever type of ammo you want. Reloading is no more dangerous than shooting the gun. You need to follow published guidelines and PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT YOU ARE DOING. Too many guys get wrapped up in how many rounds per hour they can turn out instead of making sure everything is correct. Get a good manual or 2 and read it all. Ignore loads listed in these forums (including mine) unless you can back it up with a book. Spend the next week or so using the internet and read all you can. I could go on, but I hope you get the idea. FWIW I started when I was 15 years old. Still here.

February 6, 2007, 07:14 AM
Reloads are cheap so I can't help but notice them

Are you talking about getting into handloading your own ammo or are you talking about purchasing someone else's reloaded ammo?

February 6, 2007, 07:25 AM
I have had over a dozen factory loads which failed to fire because of bad primers, a few lightly charged factory cartrides, and about 2 dozen factory cartridges which were definite overloads, but no Kabooms.

Setting aside rimfire cartridges for the moment, I can't recall ever having an issue with a factory cartridge, or any of my reloads, or any commercial reloads I have purchased. Maybe I am just lucky.

February 6, 2007, 07:56 AM
Read and follow the rules. I know that sound rather simplistic, but that's the answer.

February 6, 2007, 08:23 AM
The danger of reloads lies in who did the reloading. That being said the best reloader I know of is me. There are a few people I know who's reloads I would use. I think you're asking about commercial reloads. Most of them are okay and knowing they can be sued for a defective product most commercial reloaders have decent quality control. A good indicator is to find out how long they've been in business. If they've been around at least 5 years would be the minimum. I know this would disqualify some of the newer commercial reloaders that are good but if they've been around for 5 years without being sued out of business their qulaity control is probably pretty decent.

February 6, 2007, 09:33 AM
Cooking dinner can be very dangerous, driving can be very dangerous. Reloading is just another activity that requires attention to perform correctly.

February 6, 2007, 10:48 AM
Only shoot your own reloads is a very good rule!

February 6, 2007, 11:36 AM
I"d rather shoot my reloads,or factory ones,than walk across a parking lot at the mall! Man,THAT is dangerous.:what:

I"ve fired thousands of my reloads with no KABOOMS,and don't expect to have one as I don't try for speed records when I reload.Paying attention is THE KEY to safe reloads.

February 6, 2007, 12:44 PM

I have had more then one dud and squid load with factory ammunition, but only one squid reload in over thirty years of reloading no duds. I trust my reloads far more then I do factory especially for hunting and self defense.

February 6, 2007, 01:07 PM
I think where reloads are concerned, all of us have had a moment with the first round of a batch (a work-up for experienced loaders, or the very first reload for a newbie) where you wonder if it's going to go wrong. I'm still realtively new, so I tend to wear leather gloves when trying a new load. But I no longer fear firing them My QC is good, I triple check my work, and I ask questions on things I don't know. Now all I fear is the gun-grabbers trying to take them away.

Art Eatman
February 6, 2007, 06:32 PM
I stsarted reloading in 1950. So far, no double-charges. I did let a couple of .45 loads wind up with no powder; bulged the barrel in my 1911, but it was a quick fix. Gotta be careful with a progressive.

I've never had any problem at all with a weighed charge.

I've bought a lot of reloads. Tort liability being what it is, most commercial reloaders load a bit below maximum.


February 6, 2007, 07:00 PM
This is the first press accident I heard of

Sent: Tuesday, February 06, 2007 11:07 AM
Subject: Re: Lunch sometime?

I was loading 3006 with 4320 and the best I can figure, something got caught in the shell holder so when I seated the bullet it set off the primer. I guess it could have been a sensitive primer but we'll probably never know. Just pay attention and you'll never have an accident reloading.

I haven't used any of the newer powders because I have a world supply of the old stuff. I hear the new powders are great, especially in the smaller cases but can't speak from experience.

Lunch sounds good so give me a call sometime. Generally, wed, thurs & friday are good days.

Follow up email

RCBS press & lee dies. Bring it over sometime and I'll do it and show you how.
----- Original Message -----
From: billp
To: Sent: Sunday, February 04, 2007 6:18 PM
Subject: additional questions

1 what press were you using when accident occured?
2 which dies?

I am thinking of taking you up on the remington 700 trigger adjusting help.


Mike reported that there was brass all over the place. He left blood on the floor of his house on his way to the ER.

Mike reported that he had a fairly long wait in the ER and that his hand began to hurt badly.

Mike is a Vietnam combat vet. About 62 years old.

February 6, 2007, 07:42 PM
Hispanic friend wrecked motorcycle.

ER asks Victor if he was wearing a helmet.

Victor responded negative.

So ER stitched up Victor's head without anesthetic.

Welcome to New Mexico.

February 6, 2007, 07:58 PM
I started reloading in 1964 and still have all my fingers and both eyes. I shoot ONLY MY OWN RELOADS!!!!!! Reloading can be as safe or dangerous as you make it. I choose to make it safe!! Blackpowder guns are reloaded manually for every shot. Why not do the same for guns using cased ammunition? I consider myself to be in more danger when driving a car on the streets around Houston than when shooting my handloads in my guns!

Good shooting and be safe.

February 6, 2007, 08:24 PM
Thanks for all the responses people.

Are you talking about getting into handloading your own ammo or are you talking about purchasing someone else's reloaded ammo?

I am not going to make my own reloads. I only plan on purchasing reloads to use on my gun. If it's safe.

February 6, 2007, 08:34 PM
frez, everyone has different tolerance for risk. personally, i'm comfortable with some reloads, like black hills reman. i also don't think twice about using the reloaded shotgun shells my local range makes for skeet.

however, i wouldn't touch reloads at a gun show, and i wouldn't shoot any of my friends' reloads either.

February 6, 2007, 09:08 PM
Darrell Tonn

<img src="http://www.prosefights.org/funpics/tonn.jpg" WIDTH="480" HEIGHT="257" BORDER="0">

had black powder gun blow up.

His face had lots of black specks.

Tonn advised to always wear shooting glasses for lots of things can happen.

I can't see jpg in preview. So. Hey we all make mistakes. Misteaks?

February 6, 2007, 09:09 PM
Remember until sometime around 1850's-1870's, there was no such thing as a "factory" loaded ammunition.

Everything was a "handload" !!!

Learn to load safely, and wisely, with what ever you are loading !!!!

Even if you are loading with factory ammo.

But one question...............
Who loaded the factory ammo, and with what.......?????


(was it loaded by "fred" on monday morning after he lost $$$$$$ in the Superbowl, while recovering from a hangover????)

At least I know who loaded "mine" and with "what". So, I only have myself to blame if it goes "poof" or "KabooM".

I've actually experienced more "failures" with factory ammo through the years.

I've been handloading since 1968, and loaded in excess of 10,000,000 rds. I still have all my fingers and eyes, but only a trace of my hearing.
(Actually, boat motors have gotten most of the hearing).

February 6, 2007, 09:15 PM

This work? (http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?userid=0LK059A66I&isbn=0125475705)

February 6, 2007, 09:18 PM
Go talk to your local high volume gun dealer. The one in this area has seen about every type of blow up you have ever seen. That shop also stopped carrying Zero brand ammunition after they had seen too many pistols blown up with these factory reloads (!).

They now carry Master Brand reloaded ammunition.

New factory ammunition by a brand name, WW, federal, R-P, all good stuff. Hideously expensive. Save the brass, you might reload the stuff some day.

February 6, 2007, 09:22 PM
Let's try again.


Geech (http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=759906)

I got 200 .224 sst109 bullets in mail. (http://www.prosefights.org/reigps/reigps.htm)

February 6, 2007, 09:43 PM
frez, your concerns are valid.
I wouldn't use anyone else's reloads unless I knew a lot about who made them. I would never pick up a bag of reloads at a gun show from some anonymous guy and shoot them. If there is a gun shop you frequent and they will load them for you and you have seen their operation and know the checks & balances are in place it would be ok. Otherwise, if you are at all uncomfortable about it, don't buy them and don't worry.

Mal H
February 6, 2007, 10:33 PM
billp - Why are you including links to the 8051 controller handbook? I'm not sure posting an image of your passport is a wise move, either. If you need to test your links, please do so in the Testing forum.

February 6, 2007, 11:25 PM
Reloading for over 20 years and only had on miss fire...hammer did not hit the primer hard enough...weak spring, gunsmithing took care of that.

Reloading kits and bullet makers have great manules the cover everything you need to know to reload safe and reliable ammo.

Reloading is a hobby with the side benifit of cost efficient and accurate ammo, so enjoy it, and no I don't shoot other reloads in my guns, and I don't prefer to let others use my reloads in there guns. Just my individual preference.

On a side note, and I don't know how others feel about this, but I dont' reload ammo for home defense. Use factory ammo for that.

February 7, 2007, 12:57 AM
Thanks, based on the replies I have choosen not to use reloads. Appreciate it from everyone.

February 7, 2007, 01:21 AM
"...Reloads are cheap so I can't help but notice them..." Yep. However, unless they're coming from a commercial reloader, don't use them. You have no idea if the loader has any idea what he's doing.
It's far better to spend the money to do your own reloading. Lets you use the best possible ammo in your firearm and the endless search for the best price for ammo goes away. Look into an RCBS Beginner's Kit. Gives you everything you need less dies and shell holder. No ammo is as good as ammo tailored for your firearm.

If you enjoyed reading about "Risks of using reloaded ammo VERY dangerous?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!