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.45ACP Revolver Ammo Questions

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by whalerman, Sep 21, 2010.

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  1. whalerman

    whalerman member

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    I'm sure its a dumb question, but you guys have helped me before without making fun, so here goes. I bought a Smith and Wesson Model 22 of 1917, an N Frame .45 ACP double action revolver. Its one of the new ones that Smith came out with calling it their classic series. It comes with what I believe are called moon clips. They are complete rings, holding six rounds. Now here's the question. Do I have to use them? Frankly, they're a pain in the butt. It takes me forever to load them then another forever to unload the brass afterwards. If I fire the revolver without them, the ejector is rendered inoperable, and I have to either shake out the brass or push out each with a small rod. How should I fire this gun? Educate me, Boys.
    Thanks, and sorry if this is not a smart line of questioning. I don't know a damn thing about .45ACP revolvers.
     
  2. billybob44

    billybob44 Member

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    That's a good question whale. Check the larger vendors=MidWay, Mid-South Shooters Supply,Graf's, Weidners, etc. for a "Moon er/Demooner". It is a device that kind of looks like a long handle pliers, that charges and empties moon clips.
    With that said, I would also buy a stock-12 to15-moon clips, so that I could charge them all, and then shoot them all before having to re-moon.
    Not much different than shooting a semi-auto, and having to charge up magazines to shoot. Most people that use range time have 8 to 10 magazines, and usually a "friend" to load them while he is shooting.
    Buy the tool and you will love your Smith!!! Bill...
     
  3. Oyeboten

    Oyeboten Member

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    Should take only a few seconds to charge a Moon Clip...and, with the right Tool, about as long to remove the empty Brass from it.

    If you shoot .45 ACP Cartridges with out the Moon Clip there will be excessive Head Space or uncertain Primer Strike also.

    Get the Tool used for removing the Brass from the Moon Clip...it is a short flat thin with a half-round bend in the end, and tiny "ears" which engauge the edge of the Moon Clip for leverage...makes it a breeze to remove the Cartridge Cases.
     
  4. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    You could buy .45 Auto Rim ammunition, introduced after WW I to make loading surplus revolvers simpler.


    Or you could get some Rimz clips which are made of plastic for easy loading and unloading.
    http://www.ezmoonclip.com/page_4.htm

    Or you could get one of the several tools for inserting and removing .45 ACP from the steel clips.
    http://www.dillonprecision.com/#/content/p/9/pid/25111/catid/30/Moon_Clips_B__Demooner_Tool
    http://www.brownells.com/.aspx/pid=6727/Product/MOON_CLIP_STRIPPER


    I hope one of these options works out for you, it can be tough to learn after you buy.
     
  5. DPris

    DPris Member

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    The older Smiths would correctly headspace on the case mouth for reliable ignition without clips. Current Smiths don't.
    Denis
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2010
  6. msb45

    msb45 Member

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    The Dillion Precision catalog has a selection "mooners" and "demooners". I bought the plastic one and it works well for me. The right tools helps keep your moon clips in good shape and make shooting a lot more fun.
     
  7. S&Wfan

    S&Wfan Member

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    Hi,

    I LOVE the moon clipped .45ACP revolvers, and you will too . . . once you get the hang of the moonies!

    Also, as others said, you can order .45 Auto Rim ammunition. Georgia Arms stocks it, as do a few other places. I keep both types on hand and save + reload my brass too.

    The Auto Rim cartridges are "regular" type revolver cartridges and allow the revolver's ejector star to eject the AR cartridges just the same as any other conventional revolver cartridges eject in other caliber revolvers.

    Here's a side view of the two different cartridges . . .

    [​IMG]

    And here's a photo montage of the differences between the rimmed .45 Auto (Rim) ammo and the conventional .45 Automatic (no revolver-type rim) ammo. Hope this helps . . .

    [​IMG]
     
  8. earplug

    earplug Member

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    If your not shooting for speed buy the RIMZ plastic moon clips. I use them for shooting Bullseye with my 625. They work great.
     
  9. DickM

    DickM Member

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    I reload for my Smith Model 25-2 in .45 ACP. I hate moon clips (which I recognize is a minority opinion, but I hate them anyway). I bought 500 pieces of .45 AR brass and have been happy ever since.
     
  10. saltydog452

    saltydog452 Member

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    I do not know about the Smith 1917, but I did fool around with the Colt years ago.

    My half-moon clips were easily bent. Spring steel and all, the clips absorbed some of the impact from the hammer/firing pin and didn't pop all of the primers.

    I was just as much of a ten thumbrd Klutz then as now, so, with repeated use, I probabally bent the clips.

    The 'de-mooning' tool would be a good buy. In fact, buy several.

    AR brass is handy also. I don't remember if AR brass had folded baloon head primer pockets or not.

    For fun, you can mess with .45Colt 250 SWC .454 bullets in the Smith. I did in a Colt. If I remember right, the Colt was .452. Dunno. I think metal was a bit more brittle then. Be careful. About the best that you're likely to get safely is a 250 SWC lesurely strolling along at about 750. Didn't have access to as chrono, so the 750 is a WAG.

    If you like to mess with stuff, you're gonna like it.

    salty
     
  11. ClemY

    ClemY Member

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    Count me as a nonfan of moon clips. When I shoot .45 ACP in one of my double action .45s, I tend to shoot without clips. I do have plenty of clips and a demooning tool, but I prefer not to use them. I also tend to mostly shoot .45 AR in the revos. The .45 ACP stuff I am shooting tends to be stuff that doesn’t gage up after loading. Usually just a tad long, but it works fine in the revos.
     
  12. stonecoldy

    stonecoldy Member

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    I have not tried the Auto Rim in my S&W 625JM yet (haven't seen reasonably priced ammo) and after some searching still didn't find much new or used brass.
    So I've stuck with .45 ACP cases, bought/traded for about 4000 fired cases, and bought plenty of both the plastic Rimz and also the steel moon clips, and the de-mooner (plastic) that de-moons 2 cases off a clip at a time.
    Personally, I don't mind having the clips with loading/unloading, keeps them all together. I'm just leisure shooting at paper/cans/clays, so no big deal. Comments from others shooting with me gave similar favorable feed-back.
     
  13. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

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    Get the plastic clips, almost as fast as filling UP a speed loader. The lever type tool ( just a piece of bent steel) gets pretty fast once you learn to use it properly. Never had an issue with my Colt and that tool bending a sping clip.
     
  14. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    Hi, DPris,

    Where did you hear that? The Model 22/1917's I have looked at have chamber shoulders and case support ("headspace" if you prefer) is on the case mouth. Also, whalerman doesn't say he is having any problems firing .45 ACP, only in ejecting the fired cases. Using the moon clip for case support would be a mistake, since the moon clip does not provide proper support for the round in firing, leading to erratic ignition.

    The only revolvers that require moon clips for case support are some very early Colt Model 1917's and those Webley's that were converted from .455 to .45 ACP by trimming the rear of the cylinder for moon clips. Incidentally, factory .45 ACP should not be fired in those old Webleys; some have blown cylinders as the .45 ACP is half again as much pressure as the guns were designed for.

    Jim
     
  15. rich642z

    rich642z Member

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    stonecoldy,I pickedup some Starline brass for my 625-8 .45acp/auto-rim cases awhile back. Why dont you look up the website on Starline cases and see how much they are or see if your local gunshop can get you some. rich642z
     
  16. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    It is interesting that people buy a .45 ACP revolver and then shoot .45 AR. The only reason those Model 1917's existed in the first place was the desperate need for handguns in WWI and the Army requirement that they use the standard ammo. And the only reason the .45 AR existed was to use the guns without the clips.

    Then people bought the surplus guns because they were cheap and the ammo was cheap. When .45 ACP was going for $1 a box, and a Model 1917 (Colt or S&W) was $29.95 ($24.95 if you bought five!) the combination made sense. (The target models were used in the service pistol matches by folks who preferred revolvers.) But today, there really is no reason for that gun. It does nothing that a .357 won't do better and is almost as big as a .44 Magnum. I guess I don't understand folks.

    Jim
     
  17. DPris

    DPris Member

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    Jim,
    I didn't hear it, I experienced it in four new .45 ACP Smiths over the past five or six years.
    I'm not the only one, and I've discussed it with S&W who says it shouldn't be occurring with the new machinery & processes. But....

    The scanditanium snub did it, the Classic 1917 did it, the TR325 revolver did it, and the Model 22 (Thunder Ranch) did it.

    Some chambers allowed individual rounds to seat deeper, resulting in erratic or no ignition. Headspace was so variable I'd have anywhere from one to three rounds per cylinder failing to fire.

    Some rounds would seat deeper under recoil, and not fire when they rotated up, requiring more effort to remove with a fingernail.

    I've never had that problem with a Heritage 1917 from the PC, a .45 ACP stainless Mountain Gun, or a a Model of 1989, all of which are older guns. They will fire reliably all day long without clips, headspacing correctly on the case mouths.
    The other four newer guns simply would not. This was not with junk ammo, it was with new factory loads & not restricted to any one brand.

    There's something in the manufacturing process in recent years that sends cylinders out with inconsistent .45 ACP chambers.

    All four revolvers fired consistently when used with clips for case support & proper/consistent headspacing.

    Denis
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2010
  18. Oyeboten

    Oyeboten Member

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    Then too there's...

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Stainz

    Stainz Member

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    Some of us like moonclips:

    [​IMG]

    They load/unload rapidly in the cylinder. I have had the best and most consistent results with Ranch Products moonclips, which were $35/100 delivered, and the nutdriver-styled demooner, like the Brownells' version below. It holds the six stripped .45 ACP cases for transfer to a storage bag/box. BTW, if you reload, get fresh Starline cases - they are only $140/1,000 delivered from Starline. Your revolver deserves something better than reloaded range sweepings. If you don't reload, WallyWorlds around here still have the UMC 250 packs (~$86) of 230gr FMJs in brass - and they load easily into the moonclips, too - not all brass does!

    [​IMG]

    To the detractors. The 22/625/1917 S&W revolvers carry on a tradition since the original 1917 model - a revolver which will shoot the well-accepted .45 ACP round. It is a true big-bore revolver that uses easily found and afforded ammo, while offering an acceptable level of recoil. Additionally, you are not restricted to rounded projectiles - you can load .45 Colt projectiles. You can load mild and full-power rounds on the same clip, as there is no minimum energy requirement for proper action cycling, as in a bottom feeder. They are 'my way' to launch .45 ACPs.

    Stainz
     
  20. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    OK, DPris, I hadn't known about that problem, which was obviously a matter of poor quality control. I read your comment as a flat statement that none of the "new" S&Ws had the proper chambering, which I knew not to be true.

    Jim
     
  21. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    S&W begin doing goofy headspace jobs on .45 ACP revolvers about the time the MIM parts came along.

    My 625-6 Mountain Gun is hit or miss without clips of some sort.

    My shooting buddy has a 625-8 JM that does the same thing.

    For the OP, try the RIMZ EZ-Moon plastic clips for range use!
    You can load and unload them bare-handed faster then it took to type this.

    http://www.ezmoonclip.com/page_4.htm

    rc
     
  22. DPris

    DPris Member

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    Jim,
    I don't know how many new ones have that chamber problem & how many don't.

    I have communicated with a handful of other new .45ACP S&W revolver owners who found the same thing.

    My comment, clarified, should perhaps be: In my direct experience with four newer Smiths and three older Smiths, and that of others who've bought or shot new S&W .45ACP DA revolvers in the past 6 or 7 years, they can no longer be automatically counted on to fire .45 Auto loads reliably without using clips. Older ones could & can.

    If anybody has four new Smiths made in the past 7 years that'll reliably shoot five or six different factory .45ACP rounds without clips, I'll consider those four cancel out the four I shot & we can go on from there. :)

    Denis
     
  23. john wall

    john wall Member

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  24. fmcdave

    fmcdave Member

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    I have a S&W 325pd and reload .45ACP for this gun as well as for my Kimber and Glock. I personally like the moon clips. I have a lot of them and charge them all with my Dillon moon clip tool. That way I don't have to fiddle with them at the range. I also don't have to change over the reloader and manage yet another set of brass.

    The full moon clips are a hassle when carrying defensively (I like to carry 12 rounds for reload). I'm looking for some half moons or two shot moons as they will carry flatter in my pocket. I almost bought some half-moons from Midway, but the shipping charges were more than the clips. Haven't found two round (would they be called 1/3 moon clips?) yet.
    Dave
     
  25. TuckerNielson

    TuckerNielson Member

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    Stainz was the guy who talked me into spending what I thought to be a crazy amount of money for a revolver. But after dropping some dough on a 625JM I was a very happy camper. Shoots great, reloads quickly.

    As for getting rounds in and out of the moon clips it IS a pain unless you have this http://mooncliptool.com/
     
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