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2 Questions from a new reloader

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by SnWnMe, Aug 31, 2003.

  1. SnWnMe

    SnWnMe Participating Member

    Jul 13, 2003
    Inland Empire
    I found some 40 SW and 9mm brass on the range yesterday that were bulged about 2/3 of the way down from the mouth. Also the firing pin marks on the primer were not solid. They look like a dimple with an off center chisel mark that "smears" the dimple. I'm pretty new to reloading so I thought I'd ask here. I'm sure it's something I can learn from.

    Q#1:What caused this brass to come out like this?

    Q#2: What causes my 1911 to dent the case mouths of fired shells? (Using factory Wally World Win 230 FMJ)
  2. jsalcedo

    jsalcedo Senior Member

    Dec 31, 2002
    the first ones you mention sound like glock

    On my 1911 I had the same problem till my gun was broken in.
  3. David Wile

    David Wile Active Member

    Jan 4, 2003
    Mechanicsburg, PA
    Hey SnWnMe,

    The 40 S&W and 9mm brass you picked up at the range does not seem all that remarkable. The firing pin marks you described will have no bad effects on the future use of the brass, and the bulges described also do not sound like they will pose any serious problems. Once you have resized them, if they look good they will probably be good. You could examine the inside of the cases after resizing, but I doubt if you will find any serious case deformation. Bulging usually comes from oversized chambers, but brass is usually able to be brought back into the correct size.

    I would suspect if brass were repeatedly shot in a big oversized chamber, and resized enough times, the case life would be shortened considerably. However, chances are that you picked up brass that was only ever shot one time and discarded by someone who is a shooter and not a reloader. Such brass can provide a lot of use to you.

    As long as you can plainly read the case head, there is little likelihood the brass is worn out. If you found brass that is bulged, the case head is hammered so hare you can barely make out the letters, and the primer is not just flat, but cratered, then you probably would not want to bother with that brass. If the brass looks good after resizing, chances are it is good.

    As far as case dents go, that is common to many if not most semi-auto pistols and rifles. Usually the dents are minor, come out with resizing, and present no problems.

    Best wishes,
    Dave Wile
  4. C.R.Sam

    C.R.Sam Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 19, 2002
    Chino Valley, AZ., USA
    Can get a rough idea of whether the empty has been fired little or a lot by lookin at the rim for extractor marks. Only one mark, high probability it is a once fired case.

  5. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    Dec 22, 2002
    Terlingua, TX; Thomasville,GA
    Minor dinging of brass when its ejected from a 1911 is common. It's from hitting the lower edge of the ejection port of the slide. That's why you'll see ads for slides with the comment "lowered ejection port", where some of the metal has been ground away.

  6. Mike Irwin

    Mike Irwin Mentor

    Dec 22, 2002
    Below the Manson-Nixon line in Virginia...
    The bulge is caused by the case expanding into the unsupported area of the barrel in a semi-auto. Glock is best known for this, but other semi-autos will do this as well.

    The firing pin marks are also fairly common with a lot of semi-autos. My EAA Witness in 10mm a very pronounced smear mark on the primer. It happens during the ejection cycle as the primer scrapes across firing pin.

    As for the case mouths, my Springfield MilSpec 1911 doesn't just ding the case mouth, about 10 percent of the time the case mouths will be crushed or torn to the point where the case is no longer usable.

    As Art notes, lowering or otherwise enlarging the ejection port will often solve this completely.

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