Reloads in unsupported chambers


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Big20
January 21, 2013, 11:23 AM
In 30 years of reloading I've never had a problem with case failure. Over last summer I suffered two case head failures in two separate guns. My Taurus 709 was destroyed due to a cracked frame and my Kahr CW-9 had the side panel blown off and action bar bent. One load was a max Bluedot recipe and the other a max Power Pistol load. Since both guns have unsupported chambers my question is how many times can I reload a 9 mm case fired in unsupported chambers?

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MtnCreek
January 21, 2013, 11:31 AM
If I had blown up two pistols, I would stop loading at or near max.

In 9mm, I'll reload brass hot once (they're now on 2nd loading), then put them in the 'target/plinking' box.

243winxb
January 21, 2013, 12:19 PM
Seems Hodgdon warning may apply here. Used for the 40 S&W This data is intended for use in firearms with barrels that fully support the cartridge in the chamber. Use of this data in firearms that do not fully support the cartridge may result in bulged cases, ruptured cases, case-head separation or other condition that may result in damage to the firearm and/or result in injury or death of the shooter and/or bystanders.

Reduce your 9mm loads. :)

Drail
January 21, 2013, 12:43 PM
Running Blue Dot at MAX has gotten many people in trouble. I don't use it any more after damaging a Ruger revolver with Blue Dot. Several manuals used to print outrageous max loads for it but they have now been removed or significantly reduced. I would stay well below any MAX load. There seems to have been a lot of variations from batch to batch and it can be fairly temperature sensitive.:scrutiny:

blarby
January 21, 2013, 03:06 PM
Running Blue Dot at MAX has gotten many people in trouble.


"things that could be a sticky, part 3,456 "

ljnowell
January 21, 2013, 03:14 PM
Weak brass or overcharge? Thats the million dollar question.

HighExpert
January 21, 2013, 03:33 PM
I have rarely discovered any caliber that shoots its most accurately with a full power load. I have also not seen the evidence that the bad guy gets any deader with a full power load than a slightly reduced one. Your car can go 100 plus mile per hour but you don't usually drive it that way or have the need to. Why stress your guns with max power loads? If you are trying to make major with the 9mm you are using the wrong caliber. Try the .38Super or the 9X23.

Joatmon
January 21, 2013, 03:48 PM
"it can be fairly temperature sensitive"

Bingo on this. In cold weather it is possible to get bloopers with shotgun reloads. However, there are always potential issues when loading up to max loads, so I dont want to just blame the powder.

evan price
January 21, 2013, 07:26 PM
Sounds like the common thread here is the loose nut on the press handle. If id blown two guns id be having serious thought about changing my processes.

ljnowell
January 21, 2013, 09:30 PM
Sounds like the common thread here is the loose nut on the press handle. If id blown two guns id be having serious thought about changing my processes.

Thats exactly what I was thinking. Blow up two guns running max loadsd, dont think I would blame it on the cases. To boot, most of the time when a bad case lets go there isnt that kind of catastrophic damage. Sometimes, yes, but not any of them I have seen.

Innovative
January 21, 2013, 09:38 PM
Compared to most handgun calibers, the .40 S&W has extremely high chamber pressure. That makes it especially sensitive when firing a bulged case. The main common problem related to bulged cases occurs when they are fired in a chamber that is not completely closed (because of the case bulge).

In addition to your rstandard reloading procedure, I strongly recommend using the Wilson case gauge to identify problem cases, and use the Redding Carbide Push-Through die to solve the problem.

This is a flawless reloading technique that totally solves the problem with bulged .40 cal. cases. If your cases fail to push through this carbide die, they should be tossed.

rcmodel
January 21, 2013, 09:45 PM
and use the Redding Carbide Push-Through die to solve the problem. That doesn't solve the problem of bulged cases that have been over-stressed enough to bulge in the first place.

It makes them fit in a case gage, but it doesn't make them as strong as they once were again.

And I have to agree with ljnowell, "most of the time when a bad case lets go there isnt that kind of catastrophic damage".

You might blow a magazine base plate, or crack some wood grips.
Maybe even blow the extractor off.

But you are not going to distroy two guns in a row!!

rc

Innovative
January 21, 2013, 10:13 PM
The unsupported chamber is a very bad design - no doubt about it. But not using a case gauge to verify that handloads fit, will cause a serious problem sooner or later. The main problem is these rounds don't fully chamber. I've loaded jillions of .40 cal. handloads, and if YOUR chamber supports the case properly, you can safely shoot resized cases that get resized by the Redding Push-Through Carbide die.

I've seen bulged cases fire when not locked fully into battery. Back in the day . . . . every shooter with a 1911 and a Dremel tool was hogging out chambers to "improve" feeding. A lot of good barrels were ruined. That's where unsupported (and bulged) handgun cases seemed to begin.

The .40 cal. has almost 3 times more chamber pressure than the .45 ACP, and now everyone knows about the case bulge problem. Not everyone understands exactly why these cases are a problem.

ljnowell
January 21, 2013, 10:42 PM
The .40 cal. has almost 3 times more chamber pressure than the .45 ACP, and now everyone knows about the case bulge problem. Not everyone understands exactly why these cases are a problem.


Almost three times? How about less than twice, thats more like it.

rcmodel
January 21, 2013, 11:17 PM
+1

.45 ACP = 21,000
.45 +P = 23,000
.40 S&W = 35,000
9mm = 35,000
10mm = 37,500
9mm +P = 38,500.

It's not the .40 S&W bulging cases.
It's the folks trying to make 10mm velocity with .40 S&W handloads bulging cases!

rc

ljnowell
January 21, 2013, 11:50 PM
+1

.45 ACP = 21,000
.45 +P = 23,000
.40 S&W = 35,000
9mm = 35,000
10mm = 37,500
9mm +P = 38,500.

It's not the .40 S&W bulging cases.
It's the folks trying to make 10mm velocity with .40 S&W handloads bulging cases!

rc


Yep. Just like when someone KBs a 10mm or 40 its always "weak brass that let go." You rarely ever hear someone come in and say, "well, I screwed up and blew up my gun." Even if its the second one.

Drail
January 22, 2013, 12:36 AM
I was around way back when everyone in IPSC/USPSA decided that they just HAD to have a comped .38 Super to be competitive. And they handloaded it to get as much pressure as possible through the comp. These guns made so much pressure that when you stood behind a guy to R.O. them on a stage it was painful - even with plugs and ear muffs. You could feel the shock wave in your chest. And a great many of these guys ended up growing beards to cover up all of the damage on their faces from shards of blown case heads. We called it ".38 Super Face". It got pretty stupid for a while and pretty shortly everyone had ramped barrels in their "Super" guns. Moderation in all things, grasshopper. More is not always better. Even if a case or a chamber is rated to withstand XXXXX lbs. of pressure you really don't want to run anywhere near that figure.

rcmodel
January 22, 2013, 12:51 AM
Even if a case or a chamber is rated to withstand XXXXX lbs. of pressure you really don't want to run anywhere near that figure.Yep!

The factory loads sure don't, now do they!!

The .40 S&W factory load brass out of my old sloppy chambered 1st. Gen Glock 23 barrel sure don't need a "Bulge Buster" to be ready to reload again!

rc

sfed
January 22, 2013, 01:51 AM
Might have something to do with not starting at the listed starting load and working up too acceptable accuracy!! Not supposed to start at the maximum listed load and work down!!!

ArchAngelCD
January 22, 2013, 02:34 AM
IMO it's the Blue Dot that's your main problem.

Why?
About 2 years ago Alliant took down their entire online load data site to remove Blue Dot data because they found out it was spiking pressures especially in 125gr .357 Magnum loads. If I can remember, that was not the only load because if it were there would have been no reason to take the whole site down. Blue Dot is a great heavy shotshell powder, leave it to that.

Innovative
January 22, 2013, 10:24 AM
Before you decide never to use a bulge buster die (Redding or Lee), at least check the diameter of your handloads (with a Wilson case gauge), and see if they will fully chamber. You might be surprized to see how many of your cases don't get completely resized by just using a FL die.

This is a very common problem, and when handloads don't fully chamber . . . . those loads can be a very big problem.

geo57
January 22, 2013, 10:47 AM
rcmodel, technically, there were no 1st gen. Glock 23's. When they first came out they were on gen. 2 frames. TTBOMK the only pistols made on the original gen.1 frame were the 17, 18 & 19.

Certaindeaf
January 22, 2013, 12:17 PM
.use the Redding Carbide Push-Through die to solve the problem..
That made me chuckle. Hopefully you're not a structural engineer that thinks paint will "fix" a sinkhole. Because that would be wrong.

Innovative
January 22, 2013, 12:27 PM
Certaindeaf ........

Nothing can repair weak brass. However, it's not weak brass that causes these handguns to blow up. The problem is that too many handloads don't fit the chamber, and when those rounds are fired slightly out of full battery position, you get an explosion.

It's so easy to verify the size of your handloads ......... why not check it out?

Certaindeaf
January 22, 2013, 12:34 PM
I say if you've guppied a round it's essentially ruined. no sense smearing some paint on it or "fixing" it with a push-through. The proper tool in this case would be a post hole digger.

Innovative
January 22, 2013, 01:59 PM
Certaindeaf ........

Try using a Wilson case gauge, and see how many .40 cal. handloads you are guppying. You'll be surprised ...... and you'll be a lot safer too.

ArchAngelCD
January 22, 2013, 02:44 PM
rcmodel, technically, there were no 1st gen. Glock 23's. When they first came out they were on gen. 2 frames. TTBOMK the only pistols made on the original gen.1 frame were the 17, 18 & 19.
Well, if they were made then they do exist, no?

I want a Glock 18, I really do!!! :evil:

evan price
January 22, 2013, 06:24 PM
Where are you guys getting 40? The op says he kaboomed two 9mm pistols.
Longshot and blue dot are not the best powder choices for any reason in 9mm except someone going for max velocity with no care for pressure. I've loaded 9mm well over max with titegroup without blowing anything up. The unsupported chamber meme is the whipping boy for bad reloading.

geo57
January 22, 2013, 06:56 PM
Arch, while the first G 23's made did and do exist they were Gen. 2 pistols . There really is no such thing as a Gen 1 G 23. The Glock purists, which I'm really not, will confirm this.

ljnowell
January 22, 2013, 07:00 PM
The unsupported chamber meme is the whipping boy for bad reloading.


You, me, and RC must be cousins. We all feel the same on that one.

zaphar
November 22, 2013, 08:48 AM
Might have something to do with not starting at the listed starting load and working up too acceptable accuracy!! Not supposed to start at the maximum listed load and work down!!!

Well you can, but you may have a problem like this guy:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5v72SgS0bo8

Walkalong
November 22, 2013, 09:37 AM
If you wish to re-discuss this, please start a new thread with a specific topic. This one was done nearly a year ago.

If you enjoyed reading about "Reloads in unsupported chambers" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!