1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Hand Press 9mm problems

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by ldlfh7, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. ldlfh7

    ldlfh7 Well-Known Member

    Hello all -

    I am using a Lee classic press with lee carbide dies for 9mm. I am having problems sizing the brass to accept a new bullet cleanly. I follow the directions on the die setup but kind of get lost when they talk about the "flare". Anyways I have tried a few dummy loads and when the bullet is seated you can see where the brass expanded just a hair to accommodate the bullet. I have never seen this on any reload or factory load. I figure it will be a feeding nightmare for my semi-auto pistol. Anyone have any idea what I am doing wrong? I have never had this problem loading rifle cartridges so I really have no idea. I find it hard to believe that a new die set would not function as intended.

  2. rsrocket1

    rsrocket1 Well-Known Member

    Perfectly normal. The proof is doing a "plunk test". Take the barrel out of your gun and drop the dummy round into it. Make sure the case goes all the way in and stops when the case mouth stops at the "ledge" of the chamber. Since the 9mm is tapered, the round could possibly stop too soon. In that case, you need to make sure your flare is straightened out or slightly tapered but not so much that the bullet drops deeper than it should.

    "Flare" means using the powder through/expansion die to open the case mouth wider than it comes after resizing. This is done to allow the bullet to start straight into the case and not "tilt". Adjust the flare to barely allow the bullet to go into the case straight and no more.

  3. kingmt

    kingmt Well-Known Member

    Sounds like normal handgun loading. Let's see a picture.
  4. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    That is a good thing.
    It means you have plenty of case neck tension to prevent bullet set-back during feeding.

    It won't hurt a thing, and like I said, it prevents bullet-set back and high pressure excursions.
    And thats a good thing.

  5. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

    When you bell the case mouth or flare that slightly expanded area must be closed back to it's original diameter. This function is accomplished during the bullet seating step. The seating die has two functions built into it, taper crimp & seating depth. When you thread the entire die deeper into the press it increases the amount of taper crimp. When you thread the seating plug, ( located on top of the seating die), down it increases the seating depth.

    Take an empty piece of brass, (no bullet) and place it in the shell holder.
    Now with the press ram fully extended, begin threading the seating die down until you feel it contact the brass. Then back the press back down and give the die about 1/8th of a turn, this will be further adjusted later on if necessary.
    Now back out the seating plug most of the way.
    Now place a bullet on top of your belled case mouth, extend the press to full extension and then begin adjusting the seating plug in until you are achieving the amount of seating depth desired.
    Once the depth is determined to be correct then adjust the die body down, or up, until you've achieved the correct amount of taper crimp, or until the belling is closed back up to original diameter or with a .001" (approx.). While adjusting the taper crimp function, loosen the seating plug so that you can keep it stationary while making crimp adjustments so your seating depth doesn't change with crimp adjustments.

  6. readyeddy

    readyeddy Well-Known Member

    There's three dies in your set: 1) resizer/deprimer; 2) powder through/expansion; and 3) bullet seater/crimp.

    The powder through expansion die flares the mouth so you can seat the bullet.

    The bullet seater/crimp die crimps the mouth closed so it will feed. Use your caliper to measure the case mouth after you crimp to make sure it's in spec, or do the plunk test with your barrel.
  7. ldlfh7

    ldlfh7 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the info everyone. I will try to get a picture up later if I am still having problems
  8. chris in va

    chris in va Well-Known Member

    If it bothers you, get a Lee Factory Crimp Die. It'll iron out those slight bulges to SAAMI factory chamber specs.

    Try firing a few first.
  9. BYJO4

    BYJO4 Well-Known Member

    Applying the correct taper crimp should solve the issue.
  10. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

    It sounds like you are describing/experiencing the "Coke bottle effect", not a/the residual mouth flare. If it looks like a Coke bottle (as long as the flare is gone), that's good.
  11. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam


    None of the offered suggestions so far concerning more or less belling, Lee FDC dies, or more crimp are going to fix it, because it doesn't need fixing.

    If the base of the bullet is showing through the case wall, it is perfect case neck tension for a tapered 9mm pistol cartridge.

    Don't mess with it.

  12. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

    Ah, after RC's post I know what it is you are referring to. You are saying that the bulge of the seated bullet is visible, as in a coke bottle appearance, yes? As RC said, that is normal and a definite good thing, as in, it visibly indicates that the bullet has a nice tight fit in the case. And since a 9mm caseis not a straight walled case the bullet should expand the case body a bit in a properly re sized case.

  13. ldlfh7

    ldlfh7 Well-Known Member

    Wow thanks guys. You have addresses my problem to a T!! I fired a few clips last night and they fed no problem. The bulge of the seated bullet worried me but I guess I was just being over cautious. Figured I may as well be as cautious as possible when dealing with explosives lol

Share This Page