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.401 WSL advice

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Hardrada55, Oct 28, 2006.

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  1. Hardrada55

    Hardrada55 Member

    Sep 21, 2006
    Big Spring, Texas
    I am trying to reload for my Winchester Model 1910 .401 Winchester Self Loading rifle. I have original factory brass (from various makers). I have two bullets to reload. Some 240 grain mold #410426 which according to John Henwood are made for the .401. I assume this bullet is .410 in diameter. I also have some Barnes 250 grain .406 diameter bullets. I am reloading with an old Mequon (Lee) Loader using IMR 4227 and the Lee Loaders recommended amount of powder.

    My problem is this. While my gun digests old factory ammo without a hitch, the bolt will not close completely on my reloads. The bolt stops about a quarter of an inch from closing fully.

    This is even though in reloading the brass, I hammer the brass all the way into the Lee die with a plastic hammer. I can tell that driving the brass into the Lee die with the plastic hammer sizes the neck because when I knock them out of the die, the neck area is "shiney". I am beginning to think though that the Lee die does not actually do a full length re-sizing on the cartridge case. And therefore that my fired brass have swollen down towards the base and this keeps them from fully chambering in my gun.

    Does anyone know what I am talking about....? Anyone have any wisdom to share about reloading for this cartridge? Thanks
  2. RecoilRob

    RecoilRob Member

    Sep 30, 2003
    I used the Lee Loader for my first reloading experience....on 25-06...and it does just size the neck.

    Neck sizing is usually fine on bolt guns, so long as you use the brass in only the gun that fired it.

    But, on an autoloader you can and will run into problems with only neck sizing them. As you have found, they won't chamber properly because the shoulder and body are slightly too big and need sized back down with a full length sizing die.

    Only thing I can think of to help you is to suggest getting a new set of dies for a proper press and processing the cases that way.
  3. nikonftn

    nikonftn Member

    Jan 4, 2007

    The groove diameter in a Winchester M1910 is .406 (more or less). If your bullets are much larger than this, when you load them, they will swell the case, and the gun won't go into battery (i.e., chamber the round).

    You need to size your bullets appropriately.

    Hope this helps,

  4. ribbonstone

    ribbonstone Member

    Jan 26, 2006
    New Orleans
    (1) Try to chamber a fired case that hasn't been sized at all....if it won't go in, then you need to full length size the brass.

    (2) Run an empty case through the loading process WITHOUT charging with powder OR seating a bullet. IF it chambers,the bullet seating is the problem keeping loaded ammo from chambering....if it won't chamber, then see #1.

    (3) if the above tests shows that it's bullet seating that is the problem, then I suggest it would be moste likely casued by brass that is too thick at the neck (or by a buckled case in trying to crimp). POLISH A LOADED ROUND to smooth bright polish (use oooo steel wool) then try to chamber it. The polished case/bullet will show rub marks where it;s being halted in chambering...the location of these marks will give you a clue to waht's wrong.
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