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So I blew up a 1911 (Kaboom)

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by essayons21, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. ljnowell

    ljnowell Well-Known Member

    Im not sure what you have "proven" in your tests. If you are saying that brass springback cant occur from overcrimping a round, causing loss of neck tension you are wrong. 100% wrong. Anyone thats reloaded for any amount of time knows this, its readily available information. The fact that you need to overcrimp simply points out that you are either doing something wrong in your reloading or that you have a faulty die.

    Those are facts. Painful as you may find them, they are true. Your overcrimping to compensate for lack of neck tension simply porves that overcrimping the round held the bullet in place. Thats not the purpose of any type of taper crimp on an autoloader round.

    You said yourself that the metal of the case gets pushed into the bullet, displacing material. When a round headspaces off the case mouth this is not the proper method of assembling the round. Thats a fact.
  2. GLOOB

    GLOOB Well-Known Member

    I agree.
    Nope. I toss this brass.

    There's a heck of a lot reloaders that don't crimp 223 ammo for autoloaders. Lots o folks don't tapercrimp semiauto pistol ammo. You obviously don't need to do it to prevent setback. And there are other reasons to do it.

    I don't doubt your logic. But OTOH, of all the factory ammo I've examined, it's quite rare IMO to see a semiauto pistol round tapercrimped this much, one that has any visible degree of what you're describing. Most of the time, there's no visible crimp, at all.

    I would crimp my jacketed pistol ammo just like you describe... if someone would trim all my pistol brass for me.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2013
  3. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    As mentioned, I had to go much more than I had in the past with this particular bullet due to the geometry and physics involved when it's chambered.

    On a properly loaded (OAL) FMJ or JHP, you'll NEVER need that much crimp, because the round is loaded at a shallower angle and you have a smooth, curved surface to aid chambering.

    HOWEVER - if you load a round too SHORT (as the OP did), then the casual safety net you enjoy without a crimp gets tossed out the window.

    That short OAL cartridge causes the bullet to impact the top of the chamber, setting the bullet back severely. As the bullet is set back the slide continues to move forward. Because the cartridge is shortened, the back of the case slides up the face, and once it reaches a shallow enough angle, it will chamber. Neck /wall tension is *NOT* enough to prevent that from happening. Only a hard crimp would protect you.


    A] that a firm crimp - done properly - will not affect headspacing


    B] that a firm crimp which slightly deforms the bullet will not affect accuracy, whatsoever, in a pistol round

    Why NOT put a crimp on?

    It's an added level of safety.

    (We're off topic here, but on 223 I load cannelure bullets with a roll crimp for casual plinking ammo. If I load something like V-MAX which has a smooth bearing surface, it's DEFINITELY possible to get setback. I've measured this on brass with up to .005 neck tension. On precision rounds - 69/77/80 gr, I neck turn and use collet dies to get precisely .002 neck tension, and don't crimp to avoid deforming the bullet, but have to single load them.)
  4. GLOOB

    GLOOB Well-Known Member

    Lots of reasons. Sometimes you can't effectively taper crimp while seating, and on a SS press that means an extra step. Also, it may cause intermittent grief, unless you trim all your brass to the same length.

    It's always possible to get setback if you don't use a crimp. It's for you to determine when you need it, and when you don't, for which firearms and which bullets/brass.
  5. Slamfire

    Slamfire Well-Known Member

    I am glad you were not hurt and it is just amazing that the grips did not blow out or that you did not get metal particles in the eyes.

    This is good advice.

    I must have loaded a over a hundred thousand rounds, maybe a couple hundred thousand rounds, on my Dillion 550. I get in a rhythm of picking up bullet, case, turning shellholder and if I get out of rhythm I stop and clear the shell plate.

    Keeping my fingers crossed but no Kaboom’s to date.

    I believe I am more likely to double charge when using a loading block. I still have my Little Dandy powder measure, it was easy to day dream and forget which case I charged.
  6. Coltdriver

    Coltdriver Well-Known Member

    I have a progressive and I have always been leery of loading very small pistol loads with it. So what I do is one last quality check where I weigh every round on an electronic scale. It will pick up a squib or double in a heart beat. I have had no doubles but I have caught one where I missed getting powder in it.
  7. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Well-Known Member

    Those stubby JSWCs like factory match usually get a very wide and deep barrel ramp that is ok with light midrange loads. I bet getting them to run with bowling pin loads in a regular ramp was a challenge.

    The trend has been from those and similar cast bullets like HG 130 and Lyman 452460 to the long nosed HG 68. A lot of target shooters have moved on to accurate ogival JHPs from Nosler and Zero.

    The plated SWCs from Rainier look like but do not feed like HG 68s.

    The XD .45 is reportedly incompatible with SWCs in general.
    The XDM was supposedly revised to accept them.

    My first P220 was also. I haven't asked the second to try.
  8. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    I got those Remington Match JSWC .452's to run right up to max load, in everything except the XD, where they wouldn't run at all. I had to load up well over 100 dummy rounds (5 per .001) and record, meticulously, which firearms fed 100%, occasionally fed, or didn't feed at all. My hands were raw by the time I was done, from jacking slides. :)

    I found a remarkably SMALL zone (.002 or .003 if I recall) that would feed in all of my 45's except the XD. (Tested OK in Glock 21, Taurus PT145, S&W M&P, Taurus 24/7, Springfield 1911 GI, H&K USP45 Tactical)

    It was a ridiculously time consuming endeavor.

    I guarantee the original XD is incompatible with those match JSWC's, I tried every combination of OAL (that I could crimp, up to the point of 100% failure in all the 45's) in .001 increments; they wouldn't work, period.

    I don't have an XDM so can't try in it.

    Regarding setback of FMJ rounds, I just completed testing 40 trials of Ranier plated 230 gr FMJ (20 in a 1911 and XD, each, with uncrimped brass). Brass was Winchester Match, once fired (most consistent I have on hand). Seating depth was set to 1.270" (+/- .002, since I measured each round before starting and tracked them all individually through the course of the test, initial seating depth errors were eliminated.)

    Here's my findings:

    Out of 20 rounds chambered in the 1911, setback was measured from 0.000" to 0.013", with an average of 0.003421". The rounds were chambered by pulling the slide completely to the rear and releasing.

    Out of 10 rounds chambered in the XD, with manual slide release (full to rear and release), min setback was 0.000" with max setback of 0.005", and an average of 0.0019".

    Out of 10 rounds chambered in the XD, released from the slide lock, setback was measured from a minimum of 0.001", a maximum of 0.005", and an average of 0.003".

    Over the 20 rounds in the XD chambered both ways, minimum setback was 0.000", maximum 0.005", average 0.00245"

    Over the 40 rounds, average setback was 0.00285"

    Clearly, with this bullet /brass combination and these two particular firearms, setback in the brass is minimal. (Full metal jacket chambers smoothly)

    For those who might carry uncrimped reloads and chamber /unchamber the top round frequently, here's the OVERALL figures, tracked over 10 rounds chambered 4 times each:

    Minimum setback: 0.004"
    Maximum setback: 0.028"
    Average setback: 0.01140"

    The lesson here, is to rotate your top carry round, if you are not crimping (and just straightening the case back out), because it WILL get set back over repeated chamberings.

    The worst setback I found was 0.013" in the 1911. Overall, setback in the Springfield 1911 was about 50% worse than the setback I saw in the Springfield XD.

    Clearly the JSWC ordeal I went through, where I found it required heavier crimping, does NOT apply to your typical FMJ or JHP loads unless you are already pushing max, seating deep, and chambering the round more than once (or just unlucky.)

    Keep in mind this was with 100% homogenous match grade brass, mixed brass reloads could vary significantly from what I found in my study tonight.

  9. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    Also somewhat noteworthy if you are a reloading geek:

    I tested 185gr Golden Saber bullets, same setup as above, lot of 6, chambered 4 times each with the bullet seated 1/2 twist of the seating die deeper each pass. Worst setback over 24 chamberings and 4 seating depths was .010" and occurred at the deepest seating depth on the 1911 (2 full twists down of the RCBS die from standard Premium factory load on that bullet weight).

    I took pics of that process but haven't put the data in Excel to analyze fully.
  10. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Well-Known Member

    I had trouble with RP 185 JHP and Rainier SWC setting back.
    I just quit fooling with the Rainier and went to moly coated, eventually to roundnose.

    The JHPs get a case cannelure at the base of the bullet like some factory loads.
    That keeps them put, by gum.
  11. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    This all reminded me of another issue. I had SEVERE problems with setback on 147gr golden sabers in 9mm, enough so that I discontinued using them. The "driving band" they form in to those is one of the drawbacks to the round. Crimping didn't help whatsoever in that case - because the driving band at proper seating depth is BELOW the case mouth (leaving an open air "gap" between the case mouth and the main body of the projectile).

    Really poor design overall.

    BTW, the setback was bad enough to cause severe "guppy bellies" on brass even when shot with moderate loads in load development. (That's why I really dug in to the problem in the first place.)

    Had I been shooting those at max, or +P pressures? Bad news indeed.

    Anyway, to crimp or not to crimp, that is the question....Most of the time, no, but if you like to experiment, sometimes you find it's necessary to meet your goals.
  12. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

    It is a bore riding design. (Something you see mostly with lead rifle bullets.) In my experience with them in 230 Gr .45 ACP and 124 Gr 9MM they will get less velocity with the same charge as another similar JHP, but you get less pressure from less bore friction, so you can add more powder and get more velocity with them than the conventional JHP.

    I have not had any setback problems worth worrying with with either caliber. Is there a little if the gun feeds roughly, as in banging on the "feed" ramp on the way to the chamber? Yes. Enough to worry with if you shoot the round without multiple re-chamberings? No.
  13. TonyT

    TonyT Well-Known Member

    The first and only time I expereinced a squib was when I was making up some test loads with various powder charges on my newly acquired progressive press. I learned a valuable lesson. Whenmaki ng any adjustments on a progressive press clear all the cases and start from scratch!
  14. dmazur

    dmazur Well-Known Member

    While this sounds good, variability in case and bullet weights often makes it impossible to pick out even a 5 gr difference and have it mean anything.

    This "myth" seems to have a life of its own, and those who believe it works simply don't understand elementary statistics.
  15. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    Yup. Weigh a batch of bullets and brass sometime. You'll see an extreme spread that will be eye opening. :)
  16. Captaingyro

    Captaingyro Well-Known Member

    Those wouldn't happen to be the Remingtons, would they Trent? I have a friend who did extensive testing on the accuracy of different 200 grain SWC's, and found (to his surprise) that the jacketed Remingtons were the most accurate in the test guns.

    As for the OP, I don't think anyone has posted this link yet (at least in this thread), but these LED light strips for progressive presses are excellent:

  17. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    Yup, the one and same.

    I liked them so much I ordered more in late 2009, and have about 300 pounds of them still. I'll be shooting them at bowling pins and paper until I'm old and gray. :)

    Well, old, anyway. My hair is already skipping gray, and turning white.

    EDIT: TO clarify, I have the 185gr versions here (I mis-remembered the weight earlier and just checked my invoices from 2009)


    When I bought them they were 342.99 per 2000.

    I ordered 5 boxes total (10,000), but one split on the way here and most of the 2000 bullets in that one ended up on the side of the road, my driveway, my neighbors driveway, and rolling around in the UPS truck(s).
  18. HighExpert

    HighExpert Well-Known Member

    That sure looks like a rollcrimp to me Trent. If not, what brand of taper crimp are you using?
  19. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

    It's just an aggressive taper crimp, from an RCBS seating die, part of a standard RCBS carbide seating die set.
  20. ljnowell

    ljnowell Well-Known Member

    Thats what an overly taper crimped round looks like.

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