Would you shoot this 9mm load?


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Super Sneaky Steve
August 22, 2011, 10:33 PM
OK, first time reloading 9mm Luger and I don't even own a 9mm pistol, but my friend does and I wanted to reload some brass I found at the range so I'd have something to plink with next time we go shooting together.

I'm using a Berry's 115gr flat point. I used the recommended low to mid jacketed data in this case 4.1gr of Bullseye (Hornady data, start 3.9 max 4.6), but my problem came when I tried to seat these.

With a very slight flare on the case these things are finger tight at a COL of 1.140" and the max COL is 1.169" so I'm already well below that. I ended up seating it to where I thought it looked decent at 1.058" which is well below what most people load at.

So my question is, since I'm dealing with low end data and it is a flat point do you think this is too low to the point of there being too much pressure?

I made 300 of these so I'd hate to pull them all. If I had bad accuracy or feeding problems that's OK, I can try to fix that next batch.

Let me know what you think. Thanks!

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Friendly, Don't Fire!
August 22, 2011, 10:41 PM
Picture?

Super Sneaky Steve
August 22, 2011, 10:59 PM
Such a beautiful thing. Makes all the work worth it. These have not been crimped yet.

hAkron
August 22, 2011, 11:19 PM
Are they hollow base flat point? I load 4.3gr of HP-38 (mid range jacketed charge) on he 124gr Berry's HP truncated cone style bullets which are like a flat point with a hole taken out. I load them to a col of 1.04". Any longer and that bullet profile won't chamber in my CZ. I load round nose to about 1.14" for the same gun.

Having never tested your particular combination of components I can't say for sure if they are safe, but let me share with you some things I've learned in my short time reloading (about 10 months so far).
1) it is difficult to develop COL for a gun you don't have access to when you are seating the first few bullets. My Glock will happily feed bullets long enough that would make my CZ stop cold.

2) if you have factory ammo on hand with a similar bullet weigh and profile you can use it as a good starting point for your COL since factory ammo is more or less designed to feed in most guns (obviously this isn't always the case).

3) the COL listed in your manual will give you comparable pressure and velocity if used in the same barrel as the test barrel used in your loading manual. Different barrel = different velocity and pressure. This is why they say start light and work your way up.

4) it was probably good practice if you are a new reloader to make 300 rounds, but making 300 of anything before testing it typically a bad idea. Some guys make 10 or 20 and test. I make 50 because it takes me a few rounds to warm up my trigger finger.

5) it's generally ill advised to shoot your reloads in another person's gun. I even make a point to tell people shooting my guns that they are shooting reloads.

Start slowly, work your way up until you find an accurate load, or at least one that gives YOU reasonable accuracy with a level of recoil that YOU feel comfortable with in YOUR gun.

I'm not trying to sound as though I'm scolding you, because I'm not. You are an adult and you can do whatever you feel like doing. I'm simply passing on what I feel is reasonable and safe advice.

Jim Watson
August 22, 2011, 11:28 PM
1.169 is the MAXIMUM OAL, not likely to be usable with anything but the rather pointy roundnose bullets seen in some factory hardball.

You have to seat other shapes where they will go in the gun.
Have you chamber checked one of your typical flatpoints to see if they will go all the way in the chamber? If so you are ok. Lyman runs from 3.5 to 4.8 gr BE with a 115 gr JHP at 1.075".

You will not find printed, pressure tested load data for every possible combination of bullet and powder. Sooner or later it is going to have to quit being an Internet Recipe Hunt and become handloading with some thought and research applied.

hAkron
August 22, 2011, 11:29 PM
On second read it sounds like you have reloading experience, just maybe not with 9mm, so you probably already know the stuff I said.

After seeing the pictures this look like the 124gr HPs I use. A mid range charge should be fine at that COL. Just grab the first couple of spent cases and look for signs of over pressure.

zxcvbob
August 22, 2011, 11:32 PM
Pressure is not going to be a problem. (they might even be on the too-mild side)

Will the cartridges feed and chamber properly? I would experiment with different lengths until i found something that worked before I loaded 300 of them.

Your pictures look fine to me, except they are not crimped.

Josh45
August 22, 2011, 11:34 PM
Im looking at the Hornady Manual now.

For 115 GR HP, COAL is 1.075. The RN COAL is 1.100.

I have used the 124 GR FP bullet from berrys before and just followed the data in my hornady manual and everything went bang. They did chamber in the CZ I had loaded them for.

Remove the barrel and do the Plunk test and if they fall out on their own weight

gamestalker
August 22, 2011, 11:50 PM
First thing I noticed is the lack of necessary crimp. You might back off on the flaring a little bit too. You only need to flare enough to make starting the bullet into the mouth without shaving or crossing up as it's entering the mouth. Don't misunderstand me though, only crimp enough to completely close the flare. Since AL straight walled cases such as the 9mm head space at the mouth, over crimping can cause you head space issues. Simply closing the flare should provide enough neck tension to prevent set back or any other OAL issues during firing.
Now as for the seating depth. 9mm and other AL pistol cartridges are very temparmental to seating depth and produce excessive pressures when they are seated deeper than what the tested data suggests. Speer did a test with 9mm to get a practicle idea of how much pressures increase when bullets are seated deeper than listed OAL's and the results were pretty intense. They sat bullets .030" deeper than recomended and pressures jumped from the normal estimated 28,000 to 63,000, it more than doubled the pressures.
Your depth as indicated is .111" deeper than the data you've indicated is the listed OAL, that is excessive. As for seating them to what looks decent, all I can say is rely on your caliper and the recomended OAL, not what seems to look OK. I would also like to offer some help with you interpretation of listed OAL's. These are not the maximum OAL's, as no real such data exists that is useful. Bullets can be seated to any functional length above the recomended OAL. In other words, longer isn't a problem if the round chamber's normal, fits the magazine, and doesn't touch the lands. It's only when you seat deeper that pressures become an issue.
Has anyone helped you to learn how to attain proper seating depth? If not I'll give you a short lesson that other's will hopefully add to it.
Take the barrel out of the firearm and seat the bullets in small increments until they no longer touch the lands, will fit the magazine, and are above, or at, the suggested OAL in your book. I like to use the clink method, or spin the bullet in the chamber method. If the bullet isn't touching the lands the round will make a clink sound when you drop it in the barrel. The clink your listening for is the mouth of the brass impacting the chamber where the brass head spaces. Also, you can spin the round when it is fully chambered in the barrel and it should spin easily with very little resistance, and there should be no marks on the bullet that would be visable from contacting the lands. To reiterate, make sure you do this with the barrel out of the firearm for safety and effectiveness reasons.

Super Sneaky Steve
August 22, 2011, 11:52 PM
Thanks zxcvbob that's what I was looking for. And thanks for the other replies as well.

I'm not new to reloading. I've done maybe 3,000 .38's, 500 .357's and 1,500 45 autos. I just wasn't sure because I didn't have the gun in front of me and this is a new caliber for me.

I should have waited till next week when I could try dropping these in the barrel but as you guys know reloading takes a buttload of time and you gotta use it when you got it!

Super Sneaky Steve
August 22, 2011, 11:55 PM
They look uncrimped because they are. I didn't have time to do that yet, but I do have a taper die waiting to be adjusted and used.

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