new reloader here, bullets slide down brass


April 12, 2007, 05:25 PM
I have been reloading 38 special for a few months now with great results. I recently purchased dies and componants to reload 380 acp for my ppk/s. Unfourtunatly I have been getting bad results.

I have notfired any of the ammo yet. But for some reason, after I size the brass some of the shells permit the bullets to be pushed in, allmost all the way down. Most all of these seem to be marked WIN as the headstamp. This brass came from a grab bag of 500 "once fired" .380 shells on ebay. They truley do seem to be once fired though. The majority are stamped *I* or RP and those work fine. Very tight bullet fit, but allmost all these darn WIN shells just let the bullet slide right on down.

Any ideas what going on?


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April 12, 2007, 05:30 PM
Weird. Trash the ones that will not size down.

Sometimes with a sizer die that is not all that tight, narrower walled brass will not have enough neck tension, but I have never seen where they would let the bullet slide all the way in with finger pressure.

.355 bullets I presume.

Winchester brass is very good brass.

Hey guys out there. Could this be Win Clean brass? I have no experience with it.

April 12, 2007, 05:32 PM
When you resize the brass, do you have the die adjusted to touch the shell holder? It may need to be.

How's your case mouth flare? Set to the least you can, and still get the bullet to start.

Good Luck...


April 12, 2007, 05:32 PM
I assume you are running these through a full-length resizer die, right? That should bring them back into spec. If not :confused: :confused:

Chuck 'em if they don't size right. A few bucks worth of brass isn't worth a blown up face, hand, or gun.

Smokey Joe
April 12, 2007, 05:45 PM
Schneider38--Yup, BTDT, and it is annoying to say the least.

Cause is the different case thicknesses. Different case manufacturers make their cases with slightly different thickness case walls. When you resize the case, you squeeze the OUT side of the case to spec. The size of the opening in the case neck depends both on how big around the OUTside of the case is, plus the thickness of the brass before you get to the INside of the neck!

BTW, just to complicate things even further, in rifle reloading I've found that different bullet manufacturers make their so-called .308 bullets in slightly different diameters, too. I have cases which take Sierra bullets just fine, but into which Nosler bullets slide like I had the wrong size bullet altogether! If you are casting yr own bullets, you could size them just a little larger; then they'd not slide down the Win case necks.

The easy, cheap solution is to not use the Win cases with which you are having the difficulty. The expensive solution is to obtain a sizing die which sizes down the thinner brass cases to hold yr bullets, or make yr own bullets larger in diameter.

Were I you, I'd just buy a set of cases of the manufacturer with which you are having success, load 'em up, and be done with it.

The cases that aren't working for you, the Win cases, will make really nice scrap brass if you can't find another reloader who wants to take 'em off yr hands. The last scrap brass I sold to my local scrap dealer got me $1.63/lb, which is helpful in buying more components.

Another thought: These are handgun cartridges--they are almost always crimped. Doesn't crimping the case mouth around the crimping groove of the bullet stop the sliding in & out? Or is the fit so loose that the bullet just drops right in?

Anyhow, I sure hope you arrive at some sort of solution. Reloading is complicated enough as it is. Good luck!

April 12, 2007, 05:47 PM
You're correct guys .355 bullets. Die, screwed all the way down to the shell holder. Most all the other brass works great.

My dial caliper indicates most all of the Winchester brass at an ID of just a hair over .350 The *I* brass reads around .346 or .347

is .350 acceptable ?

April 12, 2007, 05:52 PM
Kind of sounds like the case thickness is thinner on the winchester brass causing more space than thicker brass. I would get a taper crimp die. Properly adjusted the bullet will not slide down inside. I use one with 9MM and have loaded 380 with with great results.

April 12, 2007, 06:19 PM
One thing that crossed my mind however doubtful.
Is the brass 17 or 18 millimeters in length?
.380 is 17mm.
9mm Makarov is 18mm. 9 Mak is also .365 in diameter, not .355.
Might resize ok but expand when the bullet is seated or crimped.

April 12, 2007, 06:21 PM
cases all marked .380 auto

April 12, 2007, 06:26 PM
shc1: good one, though not the case this time:)

April 12, 2007, 09:53 PM
1. Mike the belling die insert, it may be a .357
2. How much bell are you putting on the case. It should be very very slight.

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