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Aha moments and other musing reloading thoughts

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by bds, Sep 24, 2011.

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  1. bds

    bds Member

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    To lighten things up a bit and entertain/amuse others ... and not meant to offend anyone/manufacturer.

    Share with us your "Aha moments" and other musing thoughts. :D


    Have you ever wondered that copper jacketed/plated bullets are simply "full-length" gas-checked lead bullets?


    How did reloaders load their semi-auto pistol bullets when they didn't have modern invention device called Factory Crimp Die?
     
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Probably my most memorable one in the last couple of years was the time I resized my thumb nail to exactly .452" in a Lyman Lube/Sizer press.

    Now that I think about it though, I'm not so sure I said Aha!

    rc
     
  3. Ian Sean

    Ian Sean Member

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    I recovered a couple of Berry's .45 plated from the berm...noted nice rifling marks...no lead showing.

    I drilled a hole in the base and added one to my lead pot.......I pulled out a now empty projectile and I was surprised how thick the copper plating actually is.
     
  4. bds

    bds Member

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    Two of many reasons for incorporating Quality Control checks in your reloading steps:

    After loading about 50 rounds in a rush to get to the range, I noticed that powder level in the hopper really had not gone down. After pulling a bullet, I realized I had the powder measure turned off! :eek: I got a good exercise of my right arm pulling those bullets while mumbling some choice words. :cuss:


    In a rush to get to the range (again :D), I mixed up the load data so the powder charge was too low (thank God it wasn't too high :rolleyes:). I got to shoot 350 rounds single shot. The range staff thought I was doing some special malfunction drill and I was too embarrassed to say anything other than just give them a big smile. :uhoh:
     
  5. rfwobbly

    rfwobbly Member

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    There's nothing like a 30 minute workout with a kinetic hammer to drive home the fact that you are NOT as smart as you thought.

    :D
     
  6. scythefwd

    scythefwd Member

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    My aha moment...
    Good Idea : Tumbling your brass
    Bad Idea : Tumbling your nestable brass like the 9mm and .45 ACP....
    Had a few that took pliers to separate.
     
  7. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    Never drive 20 miles one way to the range with only one gun and ammo for that gun.

    One early attempt at loading 185 gr SWC for a 1911 I did not do the drop in the barrel test. Loaded to the spec in the manual. Also was the only time I brought one gun not even a 22 plinker

    Loaded up a magazine and of course they would not feed and jammed the gun, Tried a few more but no go.

    20 mile drive back seemed longer that day.:uhoh:
     
  8. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Member

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    Ever seen a very badly overcrimped .357 cartridge? You don't want to.
     
  9. rfwobbly

    rfwobbly Member

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    Warning

    Never open the bolt on a Remington 1100 with the forestock off, while wearing shorts, with the shotgun laying across your lap. The large recoil spring will grab up a neat little handful of leg meat.... and afterward leave a neat little scar that looks like 2 smiley faces right there on the top of your thigh. There may also be a slight sensation of pain until you can locate the bolt release.

    Don't ask me how I know this prized tid-bit of information.
     
  10. dbarnhart

    dbarnhart Member

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    The day I discovered crimped primers. I had been loading nothing but 45 ACP for years. Was given a 223 rifle as a Christmas present for my son and started reloading it. I honestly had never heard of crimped primers.

    I could not get some of those primers seated. I though, "problem with the press?" I bought the RCBS hand priming tool - same problem. One day I got out my calipers and measured the primer diameter. Then I measured a primer pocket. I sat there for several minutes while my mind absorbed the fact that the caliper showed the primer pocket to be too small by several thousandths.
     
  11. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    When I inherited a pile of stuff from my grandfather after he had passed on. It had rekindled my interest in reloading after a number of years of being lazy. Going through stuff I found several part bags of propellant that had only purchase date on them. Most looked different inside and I was not inclined to try to use them to work up a load for anything at that point. Sat on the shelf forgotten for some years then one day the GF needed fertilizer for her hot pepper bed :banghead: OH YEA I have some for you.:D They tasted fine BTW.

    Never try to use your brass sizing die to taper crimp your bottlenecked ammo. It is cheaper to get a new seating die. I had to replace the ruined sizing die AND get the new seater die.:banghead:
     
  12. jfh

    jfh Member

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    well, in my defense, I was just returning to reloading after a six-or-so-year hiatus, and I was just starting to reload revolver ammunition...So, I wanted to try AA#7 (9?) in a short-barrel 357 SD round being built for practice. At any rate, the recipe called for 12.4 grains max, IIRC. I set up the scale, got the drop amount calibrated and the charge bar adjusted, and loaded up ten rounds. Yes, it was a compressed load--but...it must be OK; I double-checked it on the scale again. The scale showed spot on.

    The first round of five--out of an S&W 640--was a big, rolling, booming recoil--really big. "Holy s**t," I thought. "This is what real 357 round from a snubnose is like?" But, not to be intimidated, I shot all five. Then, I started pounding the cases out with my range rod, and finally separated the last three heads and resolved to remove the rest at home at the workbench....

    Back home, careful study of the reloading bench showed me that a corner of curled paper had hung up the scale--and in fact I had loaded about 18 grains, not 12, of AA-9. I disassembled the remaining five rounds.

    My gunsmith friend confirmed I had stretched all five chambers, so S&W got to replace the cylinder on a 640 that had about 300 rounds through it.

    Googling in this forum would find the original discussion and a link to the pictures, I think. But I don't want to provide them now...VBG.

    I now keep my bench free of various recipe notes, etc., once the load is selected and written on the tape for the range box.

    Jim H.
     
  13. orionengnr

    orionengnr Member

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    Well, the first time I loaded .45LC, I resized the meat of my left thumb to .452. Not all the way through, or even close, but probably .050 deep or a bit better. Probably a good bit better. Took a while to quit bleeding, a good bit longer to heal, and my thumbprint sure is distinctive now. :)
    Not sure how or why I did that, but I dang sure won't do it again.

    And I'm pretty sure, whatever I said was more creative (and colorful) than "A-Ha!". Whatever it was, they probably heard it in Oklahoma. Or Louisiana. Or Arkansas. Or all of the above. :)
     
  14. Twiki357

    Twiki357 Member

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    My A-ha would be when I found out that different manufactures have different spec's for the distance from the neck of the 45 ACP case to the start of the rifling. I loaded 200 rounds for my son. Checked them for function/chambering in my Kimber 1911 and gave them to him. They wouldn't chamber in his S&W M&P. The bullet wasn't seated deep enough and hit the start of the rifling. The problem is... He lives 500 miles away.
     
  15. USSR

    USSR Member

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    Was having a problem with my .45 ACP reloads chambering properly. Turns out, I had my Lyman resizing die screwed in too far, and it was putting a roll crimp in my brass that my Gold Cup did not like.

    Don
     
  16. RustyFN

    RustyFN Member

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    I always heard to only keep one bottle of powder on the bench at a time and that's what I have always done. The problem is it would also help to read the label careful. I grabbed a bottle of HS-6 to load 9mm. I loaded 100 rounds and dumped the powder back in the bottle and the bottle said Titegroup. TG loaded with HS-6 data would be a bad thing. Pulling 100 rounds with a hammer puller will make you pay very close attention to what you are doing in the future.
     
  17. oldreloader

    oldreloader Member

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    I was running some 45ACP through a decapping die before tumbling. I though"I could do this in my sleep". I must have been asleep and forgor to take my thumb off the top of the case when I slid it in the shell holder. When the decapping pin goes beside your thumb nail, I betcha it will wake you up!
     
  18. J_McLeod

    J_McLeod Member

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    I got made several test loads a few weeks ago and took them to the range. When I got to the last box, I took out the card and noticed that I'd written 147gr LFP, 4.8gr 231, 1.078" WSP. I had mixed two recipes on the card, and had to pull the whole batch.
     
  19. kenjs1

    kenjs1 Member

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    My Aha moment- first time I used a Hornady Cam-Lock bullet puller.
     
  20. Hangingrock

    Hangingrock Member

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    I do not keep powder containers on the loading bench. For what ever reason (had my head where the sun doesn’t shine) I transferred a powder measures remaining contents containing W231 into a 5lb container of Unique. Realizing my mistake I rationalized that the mix wouldn’t be that problematic then concluded the reality of the situation the mixture was now fertilizer.
     
  21. bds

    bds Member

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    You made a wise decision! :D

    I made a similar mistake where I added a different powder to the hopper. I thought about pouring some of the powder out to separate FOR A FRACTION OF A SECOND then went, "Am I crazy? What am I thinking!" and tossed the entire content on the lawn. :D
     
  22. Justin Holder

    Justin Holder Member

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    Since getting into reloading I wish I had paid more attention in math class.
     
  23. dc.fireman

    dc.fireman Member

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    I did exactly this - only with 230 gr. LRN. Even after reading, and re-reading rc, walkalongs, rangers, and bds' posts about 45ACP, drop tests, using my barrel as my headspace guage, etc...

    And my range is only 20 minutes away, not 20 miles. I'm still irritated about that one... :banghead: here's my most recent 'aha' moment.

    1. Load 100 rounds of .223, for my AR-15. I've loaded, and shot, thousands of rounds from this rifle.

    2. Go to the range on a 99 degree day, with the humidity about 88%.
    3. Get set up, begin shooting.
    4. Can't seem to find the rounds on the target... ***?
    5. Confirm with spotting scope - no rounds on paper, at 100 yards.
    6. shoot more - still no where near the target. But I'm killin' the hell out of the backstop...

    7. Conclude that I've actually made a bad load - my first in .223
    8. Throw the rest of the ammo, about 45 rounds worth away - just too hot, tired, and frustrated to care about them at this point.

    9. Find out only weeks later, when shooting said rifle again, that my barrel was so copper fouled, that it wouldn't shoot ANYTHING straight.

    10. de-foul the barrel - 8 royal blue patches come out - shoots better than it ever has... Now where'd I throw those 'bad' rounds out... :uhoh:
     
  24. kennedy

    kennedy Member

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    could not get my scale to repeat loads, finally realized every time the furnace turned on the vent below my reloading table was blowing air on the scale, covered up the vent and no more problems
     
  25. Clark

    Clark Member

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    I was in a public restroom and I read on the wall, "If you are reading this, you are a time wasting bum that is too lazy to reload his own ammo."


    My ah ha moment was realizing that MY brother must have written that.
    I should have recognized his foul stench when I walked in that rest room.
     
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