Problems with F C headstamp


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showmebob
May 5, 2012, 03:35 PM
Recently I,ve been having troubles with case tension on F C headstamp brass. Most of these are once fired cases.

When doing a thumb press check the FMJ bullets press in until the powder stops them. I've not had this before. On other brands of cases I can't push the bullet in regardless of how hard I push.

So my questions are:
1. How much pressure do you use to check your cases?
2. One thumb or 2?
3. How much resistance should you have before the bullet moves?
4. Do I just have bionic thumbs?
5. Is there a temper problem with F C cases?

I'm making the assumption that since other brands work fine that it's not a problem such as a undersized expander.

Thoughts?

Thank You!

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ReloaderFred
May 5, 2012, 03:58 PM
Is this pistol or rifle brass? It makes a difference.

Fred

showmebob
May 5, 2012, 03:59 PM
Sorry, I should have stated 9mm pistol.

IMtheNRA
May 5, 2012, 04:04 PM
I have the same problem with most 9mm brass, except Winchester. In my case it is probably a combination of a Hornady die that is on the large end of the tolerance scale and FC & Speer brass, which is probably a little on the thin side.

What brand of sizing die do you use?

beatledog7
May 5, 2012, 04:05 PM
Your thumbs are probably just normal thumbs.

Many reloaders report that FC brass is thin walled, making the inner diameter of sized cases a bit larger than needed for good neck tension. Some use FC only for lead bullets (which are .001 or .002 larger than jacketed). A few size them with a die made intentionally to undersize by a couple thousandths. Some folks recycle them as scrap.

rcmodel
May 5, 2012, 04:06 PM
My rule of thumb is, you can't push on a bullet with your thumb hard enough to move it without needing an ice pack on the bruse the next day.

I'd measure your expander.
It must be at least .002" smaller then bullet dia.
Or in the case of 9mm, .353" or even .352" smaller.

Also, make sure the sizing die is screwed down all the way to just kiss the shell holder.
The 9mm case is tapered, and some brands of dies with tapered inserts won't size the case mouth enough if the die is backed off at all.

rc

showmebob
May 5, 2012, 04:33 PM
IMtheNRA

I was using Hornady sizing die and the Hornady PTX. I may try using a different expander or measure the ptx as RCModel suggested.

I guess this would lead to another question. Hmm, before posting it I'll do some measuring tonight.

PO2Hammer
May 5, 2012, 05:24 PM
You have a much more accurate tool at your disposal to measure set back - your pistol.

Make up 3 or 4 dummy rounds (no powder or primer) with the components you are using, load them in the magazine and cycle them into your pistol by pulling the slide back and letting it fly forward to simulate the feed cycle. measure before and after.

My standard is that my rounds will not set back more than .005" after three cycles through the gun.

I don't think the slow, steady pressure of your thumb really replicates the impacts the rounds receive during the feed cycle.

I use FC brass quite a bit in 9mm. It's relatively soft, you can feel the difference in the sizing process compared to Win brass. The key seems to be not over flaring or over expanding the brass before seating the bullet. I stopped using a conventional expand/flare die and use the Lee universal expander, it only flares the case mouth, it does not expand the 'neck' area. That leaves the bullet to do all the expanding, greatly increasing the grip of the case on the bullet.

On crimping I just bump the case mouth with a taper crimp die to bring the case mouth straight.

bubbacrabb
May 5, 2012, 05:45 PM
I load a ton of 9mm with FC brass. It is good brass. I get it by the bucket full. I use a dillion 550, with lee dies. I would do as others say, but the brass should do well for you.

kingmt
May 5, 2012, 09:23 PM
Need some measurements. After sizing brass ID, OD, & bullet OD. These need to be actual measurements & not read from the box.

I like FC brass.

showmebob
May 5, 2012, 09:28 PM
Measured my expander. It is .352

showmebob
May 5, 2012, 09:31 PM
PO2Hammer

You have some interesting ideas. I can definately tell the difference while seating the bullets. I never thought about not expanding the cases. How does that work with say Win or RP cases? Do they bulge if not expanded?

showmebob
May 5, 2012, 09:35 PM
Kingmt

Not sure I'll have time tonight to get these measurements but I'll post when I do. My assumption was that sizing would leave the id small enough that the expander would then resize so that all brands would have the same ID therefore there shouldn't be any difference in ID just OD. The last time I measured the bullets they were .355 spot on.

PO2Hammer
May 5, 2012, 10:09 PM
You have some interesting ideas. I can definately tell the difference while seating the bullets. I never thought about not expanding the cases. How does that work with say Win or RP cases? Do they bulge if not expanded?

I use that method with Win cases as well. Also other calibers such as .40, 10mm and .45acp. I flare only about .003"-.005". I have to hold the bullet as it enters the seating die, so it may frustrate the high speed progressive loaders.

Cases will end up the same outside diameter weather or not you use the expander die. If you use an expander die then the cases are 'pre-stretched', and some of the grip is lost. If you don't, the case neck is smaller (tighter) and the bullet does all the expanding, maximizing the grip on the bullet.

The idea of the expander die is to make the interior diameters uniform from one brand of case to another. That's all well and good, but bullet grip (a.k.a. neck tension, bullet tension) is more important IMO because it's a major safety factor. Bullet set back is probably one of the top reasons for kabooms in autoloaders.

Another factor is the sizing die. The lower on the case you can get the sizer, the smaller the case neck will be because of the taper. When you seat the bullet, you should see a slight bulge in the case at the base of the bullet. It should be uniform all the way around the case. That also helps prevent set back.

I'm not a huge fan of Lee products, but their 9mm sizer seems to work very well at getting the 9mm cases down tight. The Lee universal expander is also a neat tool. I use it on all my auto pistol loads.

kingmt
May 6, 2012, 08:34 AM
Huh? I bell my cases not expand. Never heard of someone pulling a expander all the way through a straight wall. Maybe I missed that class & have been doing it wrong all this time. I just assumed that when people said expanding they were just putting a bell on them.

PO2Hammer
May 6, 2012, 01:19 PM
Huh? I bell my cases not expand. Never heard of someone pulling a expander all the way through a straight wall. Maybe I missed that class & have been doing it wrong all this time. I just assumed that when people said expanding they were just putting a bell on them.
Maybe you should take a closer look at your expander die stem.

kingmt
May 6, 2012, 01:32 PM
Mine are tapered. They don't expanded they just bell.

kingmt
May 6, 2012, 01:33 PM
What kind of dies do you use?

PO2Hammer
May 6, 2012, 01:56 PM
Lee powder through and Lyman M dies. The Lee version has a .353" expander section then a flare. The Lyman has a much longer .353" expander section, then a short .357" section, then a very abrupt flare. It looks like the Lyman M die was designed for lead bullets in .38 Super, not a very good design for 9mm IMO.

The Lee universal expander die used a cone shaped tip that can be adjusted for just about any caliber. It should really be called a universal flaring tool.
http://www.midwayusa.com/product/140461/lee-universal-neck-expanding-die

showmebob
May 6, 2012, 02:08 PM
I use RCBS, hornady lee. They all work the same for regular dies.

gamestalker
May 6, 2012, 04:28 PM
If you can move those bullets with your bare hands, something is deffinitely not right. And regarding 9mm, those are tappered cases, so it should be darn near impossible to move them with your hands. I've tested some against my reloading bench using everything I can muster, and they don't move at all.

Make sure you aren't over belling the mouths
Make sure you aren't over crimping the mouths
Check expander for too much diameter (RC)

GS

showmebob
May 6, 2012, 04:45 PM
I only bell the case mouth barely enough to start the bullet.
I'm sure I'm not over crimping or under crimping, I've played with this several times.
The expander is the correct diameter and works just great with other brands. I can push against the bench with both hands and not have the bullet move with other brands, just the FC cases.

bds
May 6, 2012, 06:33 PM
I use Lee pistol dies and whether I use jacketed/plated/lead bullets, I "flare" the case neck just enough so the inside of flared case neck is slightly larger than the bullet base/diameter to allow the bullet to be set flat for seating.

Some say they don't flare for rounded base bullets. This works if the case wall is stiff enough to not bulge/collapse during seating. I have bulged once-fired PMC 45ACP cases even when using flared case necks to the point where the finished rounds failed to fully chamber (one case where FCD came in handy). I ended up recycling the entire batch of these once-fired cases.

I have used FC and Federal headstamp cases in 9/40/45 with jacketed/plated/lead/Moly coated lead bullets and haven't had problems to report.

showmebob
May 14, 2012, 09:16 PM
Had a little time so I sat down with a bunch of cases and the dial calipers.

First: The FC cases are springy compared to other brands. Sizing the FC's they would always come out about .002 OD larger than other brands. The wall thickness measured the same as other brands so that makes the ID about .002 larger to start with. They definately took less force to expand than other brands. I think once they are stretched from initial firing they tend to want to return to that size.

Second: I was using a Hornady PTX expander. Hornady uses a stair step method of expanding the cases. I have heard this is to better accomodate those loading lead bullets. The smaller size is standard for 9mm and the larger step is about .002 larger.

So: I loaded some FC cases with my old Hornady expander (straight, non stepped). Of the cases I loaded I could only push 2 of the bullets back into the case. This compares with about 80% push back when using the PTX. I was pushing as hard as I could with both thumbs and the effort required was much greater than when I used the PTX.

Conclusion: The combination of the FC brass and the Hornady PTX caused to much loss of neck tension. The PTX works just fine with other brands of brass so I can't blame Hornady. Use caution if you use FC and the PTX. Test for set back on the bench and avoid troubles at the range.

gamestalker
May 14, 2012, 10:43 PM
I load tons of FC brass for 9mm, 38 spcl, .357 mag., and .40 cal. and don't have that problem at all. But once again, I never bell my case mouths, I just give the mouths a nice even internal chamfer to allow the bullets to start straight when seating. My 9mm loads look simular to a coke bottle when finished, and I would probably break my thumb before the bullet would move.

Since 9mm is a tapered case, as clarified by RC, the bullet should be sightly harder to set back just by simple physics.

I would try not belling the mouths, and then do an internal mouth chamfer before seating to prevent shaving. All to often poor neck tension on AL handgun brass is the result of one or both, either applying to much crimp, or too much mouth belling. Remember, auto loading cases do not have a canelure because those type cases head spaces on the mouth. This means the crimp only serves as a means of closing the bell. The crimp does not provide neck tension, as with canelured cases, 38 spcl, or other revolver cartridges.

GS

showmebob
May 14, 2012, 11:02 PM
gamestalker

Please explain why the 9 being a tapered case (larger at the base than the mouth) would make it harder to push the bullet back. I'm not following this. It seem the more the bullet would be pushed in the easier it would get...............unless the case wall thickness increases faster than the OD of the case.

GLOOB
May 14, 2012, 11:53 PM
The FC cases are springy compared to other brands. Sizing the FC's they would always come out about .002 OD larger than other brands.
Interesting observation. I've noticed my FC brass is a distinct color. And I had the impression that is was a harder (probably cheaper) alloy, myself, although I never measured with calipers. FC pistol brass seems to give me the most inconsistent neck tension of the major brands.

I've also noticed my 9mm FC brass has huge variation in case capacity. When I load it, I am always pulling some cases off the block that look too low. I dump and rethrow, and they always come out the same as before. It's the case, not the charge. I've tried separating out the FC from the FC-dot. And there is a small difference, but there's still a lot of variation left even comparing the sorted FC brass.

TheCracker
May 15, 2012, 12:06 AM
I think your sizing die might be out of spec or something. I've sized tons of FC 9mm w my lee dies with zero problems

gamestalker
May 15, 2012, 03:41 PM
Anything to help a fellow reloader with problems Showmebob.

The 9mm gets tighter internally from the mouth to the web, thus the deeper the bullet is seated the more tension that is created. I'm sitting here with a caliper as I type, and the internal measurement from the mouth is .351" - .354" with a graduated taper to just above the web of .310.", that calculates to ..036" - .039" tighter. And from the mouth to the mid section of the case, which about where a bullet seats to, is about .022" - .025" smaller internal dimension. And yes, I am measuring FC brass that has been load more than once, resized and internally clean as a whistle.

My Speer manual hits on this topic stating that because the 9mm was a trouble child at one point in this respect. So modern cases have a more pronounced internal taper to help eliminate set back. This is why a properly sized, belled, and then crimped finished cartridge should have a coke bottle look to it. Narrower just below the seated bullet with that swollen look above that refrence point. In other words, it should be quite easy to determine where the bullet is seated to internally, just by appearance alone.

Glad to assist if this helps at all.
GS

gamestalker
May 15, 2012, 04:18 PM
My final guess is consistent with rC's suggestions. Measure your expander plug, measure your resizing die, and chech for proper resizing die adjustment.

Something else that might help to quickly diagnose the problem is to remove your expander plug and try resizing a few like that. And if the expander is the culprit, either contact the die manufacturer and ask for another one or clean / polish the expander until it measures .352" - .353". If it's the resizing die send it back to the manufacture for repair / replacement.

What you are doing in general demonstrates good reloading safety. The 9mm is not a cartridge to take set back problems with a grai of salt, being that it is a very OAL pressure sensitive cartridge, and operates at high pressures as is. .010" set back on the short side can cause an excessive spike in pressures. .030" can result in a KB. So keep up the close observation and attention to detail, and you'll never have to get tagged with one eyed jack, or lefty.

GS

showmebob
May 15, 2012, 06:08 PM
gamestalker

Thanks for the explanation. When the bullets do push into the case I can feel the resistance fades quickly, the bullet moves in quickly and then stops abruptly. I'll have more time next month to make more measurements but for now the sizer and expander seem to be the correct size. I may try yet another expander I have just for fun. This is frustrating to me because I don't have this problem with the other 3 calibers I load for.

Thanks to all for the help, I'll report back next month after I get a little time to devote to the project again.:)

murf
May 15, 2012, 11:40 PM
a quick and dirty way to measure case wall thickness: measure the diameter of a loaded round (at the mouth), measure the diameter of the bullet you are using, subtract the two, divide the result by 2.

if you want to find out if the thickness varies, do the measurement at different locations on the case-mouth.

accuracy isn't as good as a micrometer, but it should tell you what you need to know.

murf

showmebob
June 1, 2012, 12:20 AM
Conclusion: I went back to my old die setup. Hornady dies with the standard expander. I was previously using the Hornady PTX so I could seat and crimp seperately. I was using a Lee FCD to crimp with. After resetting the Hornady seat/crimp die I ran a dozen case test batch. I couldn't achieve setback no matter how hard I pushed on the case. The combination of the FC brass and the Hornady PTX caused to much loss of neck tension. Not sure if the FCD had anything to do with it either. The PTX works just fine with other brands of brass so I can't completely blame Hornady. Use caution if you use FC brass and the Hornady stepped PTX. Test for set back on the bench and avoid troubles at the range.
Thanks to all for the advice!

showmebob
June 2, 2012, 01:03 AM
Tonight I had a chance to load up some of different brand cases (as usual). I again had problems with FC cases. I tried not using the expander at all and switching to another sizer die. No luck. About 45% of the bullets would push back into the cases with strong two thumb pressure of all the cases that had problems all were FC except for one Speer. No other brand had issues. I guess after tonight I'll just have to blame the brass, maybe they had a bad run. For now the FC gets set aside or hits the recycle bucket. Next week I'll call hornady and see if they have any ideas.

murf
June 2, 2012, 07:21 PM
one last suggestion and i will leave you alone.

scrap the carbide sizing die and get an old-style steel sizing die. don't forget to lube the outside of the case first.

imop, sizing a tapered case with a straight wall sizing die is not working.

murf

moxie
June 2, 2012, 08:54 PM
gamestalker,
Don't you know you're cheating when you read all that info on your Speer manual besides the load data itself? Shame!

1SOW
June 3, 2012, 12:21 AM
all the cases that had problems all were FC except for one Speer. No other brand had issues.
9mm:
Both are "ATK" produced cases, along with a few more headstamps. I find all ATK cases to be "softer" in my LEE turret press. WIN, R&P and PPU tend to be "harder". This softness or hardness is especially noticeable in the handle pull when seating the bullet. Separating the soft and hard cases into two groups gives me noticeably better oal and taper crimp consistency.
YMMV

showmebob
June 5, 2012, 11:41 PM
Got another chance to load last night. I sorted all the FC Speer and Blazer cases out. Loaded up 200 with no problems. One thing I did notice is that the .FC., Speer and Blazer cases all have an appearance of being rounded toward the primer pocket where other brands/headstamps appear to be flat. I think this may be the way to identify trouble cases. When I get more time I'll load up some FC (no dot) cases that appear flat and see if they are problem childs as well.

1SOW, I agree

gamestalker, I did try not using the expander at all. Seating pressure was greater but setback still happened with 2 thumb pressure.

murf, I pulled the decap pin from my sizing die and measured it. It is indeed tapered with the small end .351 if I remember correctly. It was the measurement give to me by Hornady. FWIW they also said it is a brass problem.

Thanks to everyone for their insight. If anyone thinks of anything else please post.
Thanks again!

IMtheNRA
June 6, 2012, 01:06 AM
I hope there is a solution, as I have the same problem with FC, Speer, and many other brands. I have thousands of mixed cases, and I'd love to use them someday. :)

My replacement die just got back from Hornady, and I still can't get good neck tension with FC and Speer.

The only consistently good results are with Winchester 9mm brass. All others suffer from setback. I've never been able to push the bullet into a Winchester case.

Jim Watson
June 6, 2012, 01:21 AM
Smaller expander plug.
EGW undersize sizing die.
http://www.egwguns.com/undersized-reloading-dies/undersize-reloading-dies/

IMtheNRA
June 6, 2012, 02:16 AM
Well, that's interesting! Do you think a die that is .001 smaller will make enough of a difference in neck tension?

moxie
June 6, 2012, 09:22 AM
showmebob,
The cases that are "rounded toward the primer pocket" are actually slightly concave. This is the way Speer has made their brass for many years. Blazer is made by Speer so has concave case heads. AlliantTechSystems (ATK) recently became the parent company of both Federal and Speer (among others). We are now seeing some Federal cases with the concave heads. I personally have never had any problem with these cases and doubt that they are the source of your problem.

showmebob
June 6, 2012, 01:59 PM
moxie

I'm glad you have never had any problem with these cases. I however, can find no other logical reason for the problem at this time. If you need to cool off from the TX heat this summer, come to CO and we'll explore this problem together.

moxie
June 6, 2012, 02:56 PM
Thanks Bob. Good luck with your reloading.

popper
June 6, 2012, 04:58 PM
Solution appears to be to get a smaller (.002) sizer die or scrap the brass. I don't reload 9 anymore but never had the problem with mixed brass and RCBS die. You could use cast in those cases! A 38 SWC should fit good.

Innovative
June 6, 2012, 06:30 PM
showmebob .......
It sounds like you may be using a .38/.357 resizing die. If not, it sounds like the ID of your sizing die is just too large. By the way, Federal cases are some of the very best brass you can buy.

showmebob
June 7, 2012, 02:13 PM
Innovative
Definately not using 38/357 dies. Have tried both Hornady and Lee sizing dies with and without using expander/ptx. .FC. Speer and Blazer seem to be the biggest offenders. Other brands work just like there supposed to. Till I get more time to "play" with this issue I'm culling the brass.

LotI
June 9, 2012, 10:16 AM
I too have had this problem with CCI, FC, and Speer 9mm brass. Especially the brass with one or two dots around the manufacturer stamp and the concave base. I have given up since RP and Win brass have firm neck tension. I can't measure a difference with the equipment I have between the brass or loaded rounds.

Bullets are Montana Gold 124gr JHP and my dies are Lee. Using the FCD does nothing and starting the bullet with no flare doesn't change things.

The older Federal brass doesn't have the issue but I've set it all aside for now. I currently don't have any lead bullets but that may be the use for them in the future.

Innovative
June 9, 2012, 11:23 AM
I've seen individual defective cases that you wouldn't believe. However, it's rare to find a large quantity of brass with a significant problem. In this case, it appears that some of this brass discussed has a real defect.

Shrinkmd
July 6, 2012, 01:26 AM
I've been loading range pickup FC and F.C. brass, and I've noticed quite a bit of difference in force needed to size them. Some require lots of effort, others zip in and out of my Redding carbide sizer.

Why does this happen? Do some pistols have such larger chambers that the brass expands more, so it needs more effort to resize?

918v
July 6, 2012, 02:35 AM
.FC. brass is .002" bigger in diameter

This increase in diameter is recent. 9mm dies are designed for the older smaller cases. I hate .FC. brass.

Shrinkmd
July 6, 2012, 09:11 AM
So once they are sized down they will be easier to resize from now on? Why did Federal change the size of their cases?

Now that I have the BUBCA net working well, I'm considering buying some Starline brass for the 9mm for my target loads. Range pickup is free, but my wrist is gonna break working the press handle when it sticks.

918v
July 6, 2012, 10:11 AM
Negative. They are .002" bigger at the case head and basically bind in the die. It's like trying to resize a .40 using a 9mm die.

fguffey
July 6, 2012, 10:49 AM
Neck tension, not a standard, I use bullet hold, I have micrometers, I use them, I took a picture of my micrometers a few months ago, the picture weighed 400 lbs..

I use the FC head stamp when sorting cases, in the real world I use the term “FANTASTIC”, save me time.

F. Guffey

Shrinkmd
July 6, 2012, 11:02 AM
Negative. They are .002" bigger at the case head and basically bind in the die. It's like trying to resize a .40 using a 9mm die.

I have dropped some of the finished rounds which were larger into my case gauge, and they went in and out no problem. Hopefully the ammo feeds well.

Maybe I should just load another headstamp. Pity, I have plenty of them, though...

Innovative
July 6, 2012, 11:54 AM
Shrinkmd ......

The variation in different brands of brass can be considerable, and the 9mm is one of the worst examples. The major problem area is at the transition to the web (solid part of the case). Some brands of cases can be easily bugled if not fully supported by the gun's chamber. This can be difficult (sometimes impossible) to resize with an ordinary resizing die.

1SOW
July 7, 2012, 01:17 AM
Maybe I should just load another headstamp. Pity, I have plenty of them, though...

As Mr. Guffey said, the "FC" brass is ok.
The ".FC." cases are not ok.
Thanks 918v, I don't normally load ATK brass, but I have a ton of it. A lot of the latest is .FC.:mad:

Anyone notice that "WIN" range brass is getting more scarce. "WCC" has come back big-time at my ranges. Example: WWB of 100 is now WCC.:uhoh: Probably due to war-time surplus.

carbuncle
July 7, 2012, 03:51 AM
My first batch of reloads had some FC 9mm: I over-expanded 3 of them while I was dialing in the powder-through expander and they couldn't be saved. I tossed one at the bench and thought two were GTG, only to have them fall apart in the ammo box and in the 5906 at feeding. Others loaded up fine, so I think the mistake was mine: thanks for the info in this thread, I'm going to keep an eye on the FC cases in my pickup brass just in case.

FROGO207
July 7, 2012, 06:12 AM
If you separate the FC brass and use it to load lead bullets this will become a non issue for the reloader. I have older 9MM FC brass and a Lee Carbide sizer die and that combo has netted me zero problems so far. I can see that between different brands/and individual dies within brand, there is going to be a variation in the finished size brass diameter and this will affect the inside diameter some. You have to measure your sized brass ID with an accurate set of calipers and determine if it is a problem with your die set and decide what action to take to solve the problem-----or if you have a problem at all. This seems to be happening with new brass/dies/reloaders most often so there is a common problem in here that seems to have developed recently IMHO.:confused:YMMV

M-21
July 7, 2012, 07:00 AM
Are you finishing up your loading with a taper crimp die? I load all sorts of 9mm and use it in a buzz gun and have no push back with any brass. You have to be careful when you set it as to much crimp is not good. One suggestion with Lee dies is to replace the die locking ring/ nut with one that will not move so adjustments stay put once set. RCBS locking rings are great as they have a brass setscrew and that doesn't mar the die body when you tighten it in place. This will help by knowing things are set up the same every time.

G'Day

Shrinkmd
July 7, 2012, 09:31 AM
The ".FC." cases are not ok.

I've been sorting my brass by headstamp because I'm shooting it in a target pistol and want "the best" ammo for practice I can make. And I am shooting lead, 125 lrn over Bullseye 3.5gr. Like a big overgrown 22lr, great fun.

I guess I should sort through the F.C. cases and recycle them.

I usually separate into the major brands. I have WIN, R-P, Speer/CCI/Blazer (keep them all together), CBC, FC, some Starline, and then a big container of "Other." The other has the PMC, S&B, GECO, and anything which looks crimped. Once of these days I will readjust the Dillon swager from rifle to pistol, and then run this container through to ensure the pockets are ok. That project is on the "someday" pile...

Innovative
July 7, 2012, 10:16 AM
Shrinkmd .....

If you want a target pistol to perform, you definitely need to sort your brass by headstamp. That alone will cut your groups by at least 20%.

tightgroup tiger
July 7, 2012, 10:25 AM
After reading all the post here I decided to offer the way I sort my 9mm range brass.

You can take it for what it's worth and it is a pain in the ass to do this but you have to sort your range brass anyways.

I clean all my new range brass first to keep the dirt out of my resizing die. I take all the dies out of my LNL-AP and run only the re-sizing die to resize and punch primers.

I then put my neck sizing die in a single stage press and do the neck sizing there, I sort my brass by neck tension, you can feel this very easily with a single stage.

I pull out the one that no effort to neck size, and put them in a different container.

I only need to do this once when I first get the range brass and after that I don't have to worry about just loading them in a progressive, the way I should be able to do.

By the way, this problem isn't just with Federal 9mm. I have also found very loose neck tension on every brand of case I've seen so far including win, PMC, S&B, WWC, Blazer, and some brands I think of right now.

But Fed is definately the biggest offender. When I done with this sorting method I will sort out the loose tension cases to see who made them. Fed will be half the container, the rest are a various mix of brands.

I don't throw them away, I just load these seperately on my SS so I can keep a better eye on them.

I didn't know about the .fc. brass problem but this method I use gets them all no matter who made them.

Like I said, it is a pain in the ass to do, but I get a much better "sort" this way and a lot of piece of mind.

918v
July 7, 2012, 12:50 PM
Maybe I should just load another headstamp. Pity, I have plenty of them, though...

Anything made by ATK, i.e. Speer, Blazer, CCI, FC is transitioning into this new case design. This is not limited to the 9mm. All the small primer 45ACP brass is bigger at the base and causes the same sizing issues.

Shrinkmd
July 7, 2012, 04:48 PM
Why are the companies doing this? To make it harder to reload? Don't all cases have to fall within a certain spec?

I guess it's Starline time now that I have the BUBCA, won't lose 'em anymore...

Shrinkmd
July 12, 2012, 10:13 AM
I just reloaded some FC and .FC. which I ran through my 952. The regular FC went through the sizer like butter, and the others stuck a little, but nothing like when they went through the first time. I guess the Redding 9mm carbide sizer reaches down a little to get it a little more into shape.

Innovative
July 12, 2012, 10:41 AM
Cases can bulge when fired in a chamber that doesn't fully support the case. Those cases are often much harder to resize, but they will resize easily after that.

918v
July 12, 2012, 12:29 PM
The problem with FC's new brass is not bulging. It is an out of spec case head.

Old FC measures .386".
Dot FC Dot measures .388"-.389"
FC Dot measures .387"-.388"
New FC without dots measures .387"-.388"

Redding dies are on the tight side. Dot FC Dot binds in mine.

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