Lighter recoil spring for light loads? + stuck round


August 7, 2003, 09:56 PM
Recently I got a reloader. I loaded up some very light .45’s – 4.4 grains of 700X with a 200 gr SWC. That is the bare minimum. The recoil as you can guess is very light, and there is my problem. Sometimes the cartridges would eject, but the next round wouldn’t feed properly and gets stuck halfway up the feedramp.

Do I need to switch to a lighter recoil spring for these loads? Anyone have a suggestion on what size? I was using a Para Ordnance 12.45 LDA. I will also need one for my Para Ordnance P14 for these loads.

One other thing. A few times the spent case would eject and the next round would go almost all the way into the barrel, but would get stuck. My slide was stuck about ¼" back and I had to really pull on the slide to get the round out. Any idea on the problem or solution here?

Any suggestions are appreciated.

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August 8, 2003, 08:59 AM
I have been using 3.5gr of 700X for 25years for bullseye matches with a 200gr LSWC. And I have experimented with different weights down to 3.2gr 700X which is where my Gold Cup started to balk at functioning every time. I know that the IMR powder page lists 4.4 as a minimum but I have been using the 3.5gr 700X since I began loading .45acps. It is wonderfully accurate and functions my Gold Cup every time. I have a Commander with heavy springs in it for hardball and the 3.5gr 700X load is just a little shy of functioning EVERY time. Quantrill

August 8, 2003, 09:16 AM
Hmmm. On another thread someone mentioned the crimp. I think I will work on that end of it and try it out in my full frame Para and see what happens.

3.5 grains of 700X?? Wow. Now I can cut my powder costs by 1/4!! Any idea of how many fps you are getting with that load? There's a guy at the range I frequent and he's an avid reloader. His goal is to get 9mm recoil out of everything. Then again he ends up with a lot of bullets stuck in the barrel too.

Sounds like the 700X has been working fine for you. Honestly I just kind of picked it blindly when I bought my reloader.

August 8, 2003, 09:44 AM
I started with 700X for shotgun shells. That was my first reloading foray. When I started doing pistol, I just carried it over. It seems that 700X does well for LIGHT or bullseye TARGET loads. I use it in .38sp, .44sp, 45Colt, 45acp and 9mm. If one wants a little more oompf, then switch to another powder (such as Unique) and if one wants a lot of oompf, then something like 2400 is the ticket. It has not gone unnoticed by me that 700X will stretch your reloading dollar also. The crimp is an interesting possibility and something to investigate. Good Luck!! Quantrill

August 8, 2003, 11:13 AM
Yes, use a lighter recoil spring.

Also, if you're getting rounds that chamber most of the way, get stuck, and are a pain to get out, the cartridges are probably too long and the bullet is getting stuck in the rifling (not good!). Make a habit of removing the barrel from your gun and checking a few rounds to make sure they chamber fully and easily before you crank out any significant quantity. Just last weekend my wife and I were at the range and some reloads that I had checked in my gun wouldn't chamber in hers. Trying to eject a stuck loaded round, I ended up pulling the case right off it, leaving the bullet stuck in the throat and showering the bench with powder. She was not amused!

August 8, 2003, 11:35 AM
Ok two things are happening that I should clarify:

1) the cartridge goes half way in. It slides up the feedramp and the nose is in the chamber but not pushed all the way into the barrel. So my slide is about half way back. **Maybe the flatter nose 200gr SWC bullets are to blame or polishing the feedramp?

2) I fire and the spent case starts to eject, but stops. So my slide is pushed 1/4" back. I then have to rack the slide to eject, which can be tough because it seems stuck. **Maybe a lighter spring or better crimping will solve?

I guess I have to experiment a bit - which, oh well, will get me to the range more!

August 8, 2003, 04:37 PM
Are you using lead SWCs? If so, I've found that their extra .001 of girth sometimes makes feeding a little rougher than with the slicker FMJ or copper washed bullets. I'd get results similar to yours while shooting a Glock 30 with light Bullseye,Clays and Titegroup loads. The solution was either to boost the powder and recoil impulse, or use a Lee Factory Crimp die so that the rounds fed more smoothly and didn't get stuck.

Nero Steptoe
August 8, 2003, 06:25 PM
Guys, this ain't rocket science. Assuming that his loads are spec, then he obviously needs a lighter recoil spring, if he's hell-bent on using ultra-light loads. Buy a few reduced-power springs and experiment.

Standing Wolf
August 8, 2003, 09:41 PM
The good folks at can help with recoil springs. It may be worth your while to buy an assortment for use with different loads. I'd develop the ideal load first, then replace the spring, but there are people who'd replace the spring first.

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