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45 Colt Case Length

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by jamesb, Nov 19, 2012.

  1. jamesb

    jamesb Member

    Jun 1, 2007
    Indianapolis, IN
    Question on the effects of brass being two short. The normal 45 colt case max length is 1.285, with a trim length of 1.275. Hornady 45 colt leverevolution bullets are loaded with a 225 gr FTX that requires the cases to be trimmed to 1.215. I reload 45 colt for CAS on a hornady L-N-L AP using a 200 gr LRNFP bullet. When the shorter brass is loaded to the normal OAL the bullet does not seat into the crimp groove. The bullets are pretty soft and the case crimps tight into the lead. Will this cause issues? After my last batch I noticed 2 rounds loaded that way, I fired them this past weekend at a match and did not see any ill effects. I had picked up several boxes of the 45 colt leverevolution ammo pretty cheap so I have around 250 of the shorter brass mixed in with several thousand normal brass. Should I separate them out?

    Also another noob question, I have only loaded 200 rounds on my L-N-L AP, is it normal to have brass shavings all over the shell plate? I never noticed this on my single stage press.

  2. 45lcshooter

    45lcshooter Active Member

    Oct 6, 2012
    Central of the Commonwealth of PA
    Yes i would seperate them. Plus the commerical rounds are made for rifle, i know on some sites people ask if there is a different in 45lc pistol and 45lc rifle ammo. Im not sure, because i don't have a rifle, and none of my manuals say any difference. But yes keep them seperate unless your going to trim all that new stuff, then in that case throw it all together.
  3. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Mentor

    Dec 7, 2008
    Mount Desert Island Maine
    The way you are doing it will probably work but the danger is the crimp will not work and the bullet will slip into the brass raising pressures. The way to be safe is to separate the brass and load the shorter brass with a lower amount of propellant and adjust your seating die to seat the bullets to the crimp groove and crimp. Or you could trim all the brass to the shorter OAL and load them all the same as stated above. I would just buy different brass and sell off the Hornaday stuff to someone else. There are others that would buy them on the trading post area on this site. If you do continue to do the same as present DO NOT use the shorter brass in the rifle for safety reasons please.
  4. USSR

    USSR Mentor

    Jul 7, 2005
    The proper AOL when using cast bullets is obtained when you crimp into the bullet crimp groove, irregardless of what some manual says. Separate the Hornady brass from the regular brass, crimp into the crimp groove, and with the low pressure CAS loads you are using, you will be fine.

  5. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

    Nov 20, 2006
    Exactly. Here is a pic of one of Don's superb cast .45 Colt bullets.

  6. helotaxi

    helotaxi Senior Member

    May 23, 2009
    The key here is to never bother with the FTX bullet in .45 Colt. You gain nothing and ruin the brass by trimming it too short to be otherwise useful.
  7. Notoast

    Notoast New Member

    Mar 29, 2011
    Colorado Springs
    You should rarely get bullet shavings on the shell plate. I use my thumb and first two fingers to try to make sure the bullet "feels" in line with the brass. You may need to increase the flare on the case mouth a bit more to do this. Another reason to have all the brass the same length...you'll get the same flare on each case mouth.
  8. Hondo 60
    • Contributing Member

    Hondo 60 Mentor

    Sep 6, 2009
    Manitowoc, WI
    I have 60 pcs of short Hornady nickel brass.
    Maybe someday I'll reload it, but I ain't holdin' my breath.

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