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converting 9mm Luger brass to 9x18 Makarov

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by rondog, Jul 17, 2008.

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  1. rondog

    rondog Member

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    OK, I've heard this can be done.

    I have a pistol in 9x18 mak, but I hate the Russian ammo and am too cheap to buy a bunch of new 9x18 brass.

    I have thousands of 9mm Luger brass, all deprimed, cleaned and polished, but no 9mm weapons and no plans to get one soon.

    So, how do I go about trimming the 9mm Luger down to 9x18 mak?

    I know I'll need dies, and a good case trimmer, but what else? Powder? Bullets? Loading/extraction issues?

    I realize the "9mm Luger" headstamp causes a confusion factor, but I have ideas about dealing with that.
     
  2. jeepmor

    jeepmor Member

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    Are these two truly the same size,? Sorry, no manual in quick reach?

    All things being equal, bullet diameter, breech dimensions minus different case length and COL. All you should have to do is trim to length with your case trimmer.

    Wall thickness may vary compared to the other, this could be an issue. A little more homework and a good set of calipers and manual for dimensional reference should be all you need. Headstamp issue, shouldn't be a problem. If you shoot those as a reloader and don't pick them up, it's just more trimmer work. Point being, you'll pick them up.

    I recommend a drill coupler of sort like a socket head allen screw of appropriate size to replace the hand crank assembly for your electric hand drill. Saves LOTS of time in any brass trimming routine.
     
  3. evan price

    evan price Member

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    I see it all the time, the cases will fireform OK, just be sure to pick them up and take them home, I get so tired of having to pick the homebrew MAK cases out of my Luger brass for reloading...
     
  4. Shoney

    Shoney Member

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    Years ago, the only way to reload 9x18 was to trim down 9x19 by a silly millimeter, long before Starline made brass for it.
    It is not hard to trim, a drill on the trimmer makes it easy, then load as normal.

    It is a near impossibility to sort “converted 9x19” from regular 9x19 brass. Take heart though, they are very easy to spot once you load them as a 9X19.
     
  5. Shoney

    Shoney Member

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    Also, if you are in need of things to do, take a 7.62X25 Tok, run it thru your 9X18 die, then load it as a shot cartridge.:D
     
  6. rondog

    rondog Member

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    Thanks for the input, guys! I appreciate it! I'm still very new to reloading, and am not quite sure what to look for.

    The two cases measure so closely, except for length, that I thought they would work. I just don't know how close the tolerances have to be for cases to work reliably/safely.

    What's a good trimming machine to look for? I'm a big fan of electrical-powered appliances, rather than hand-cranked. But good crankers aren't out of the question, if they're hassle-free.

    As far as the headstamps, I'm going to experiment with roughing up the face a little, then painting it with a red Magic Marker. Maybe a couple of drags across some rough sandpaper will give it some "teeth" for the ink to get into.
     
  7. Shoney

    Shoney Member

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    rondog: You will not have problems with reliability. Trimmed cases will work flawlessly. Having said that, I would strongly advocate buying Starline cases.

    The data for 9X18 is so anemic that you will not have problems. The standards were set to accomodate the specs of Elcheezy Chepo brands of 9X18 pistols.
     
  8. jwr_747

    jwr_747 Member

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    some folks,myself included trim down 9mm Luger to 9mm Mak.if you use nickel plated brass you will have a good way to keep the Luger and Mak stuff seperated.when I pick up range brass or shoot "store bought ammo" the nickel plated brass goes into my "to be trimmed bucket".if you go to my loading room,every piece of nickle 9mm brass you see is trimmed to Mak size or waiting to be trimmed. jwr
     
  9. EddieCoyle

    EddieCoyle Member

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    How does the trimmed brass work? Doesn't the 9x18 use a .360" diameter bullet?
     
  10. Shoney

    Shoney Member

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    The 9X19 case is tapered from 0.391 above the extractor groove to 0.380 at the mouth. The 9X18 is very slightly tapered from 0.392 above the extractor groove to 0.390 at the mouth.

    By Shortening the case 1mm and then sizing it in a Mak die, where the sidewalls are sized to around 0.380ish depending on springiness of brass. The belling/expander die flairs the case so it will accept the 0.364 to 0.366 bullet. When the bullet is seated, the diameter of case at the mouth goes to around 0.387, which is smaller than chamber specs

    The prepared, unfired, and trimmed down 9X19 case is now very close to the specs of the 9X18, close enough so that no further processing or fire-forming is necessary. You simply insert primer and powder, seat a bullet and shoot.

    Reliability on mine has been 100%.
     
  11. lee n. field

    lee n. field Member

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    1. Size it with a 9x18 Makarov sizing die
    2. trim to length with a case trimmer. Use shell holder for 9x19.
    3. Mark the case. I use a red Sharpie.

    I have had no problems whatsoever using trimmed 9x19 brass.
     
  12. FieroCDSP

    FieroCDSP Member

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    I've done the deed. I'm cheap, so I use Lee dies and it works just fine. The millimeter you take off is the most noticibly tapered portion of the casing. Once you trim it, it's not too difficult to get your case flared to accept a Mak bullet. It'll look a little funny at first, then after it fire-forms with the first shot, it won't be an issue.

    I use the Lee trim tool in a drill press. The one major detail I can give a heads-up on is that the Lee chamfer tool is incredibly hard to use on cases smaller than 9x19. I ended up going out and buying an RCBS chamfer tool which is easier to hold and works a lot better on the smaller cases.
     
  13. Pinedo53

    Pinedo53 Member

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    I am a new member as of today to this Org. I found it looking for info on reloading 9X18 Mak bullets.
    I have some questions regarding this reload, Can anyone who currently loads 9X18 contact me, Please? I would much appreciate the information so that I can do this right the first time. I am also rather new at reloading.
    1) What size dies do I purchase, Is it the 9mm Lugar?
    2) Is it better to use the 9X19 to trim down or the 9mm Lugar brass?
    3) Primer, Same as Lugar?
     
  14. GT1

    GT1 Member

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  15. MetalMan52

    MetalMan52 Member

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    9mm MAK

    Make sure you use the correct bullets. 9mm MAK is .364 diameter while 9mm Luger is .356 diameter.
     
  16. Legion489

    Legion489 member

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    Well Lee N. Field said what I was going to. Lee dies work fine for this. Trim, run through your 9mm Makarov (MA-ka-ROV) dies and load with .363" jacketed or .366" lead bullets. Mark so you can figure out which is which (I use a red Sharpie too). A punch mark in/through the "Luger" also might help.
     
  17. Pinedo53

    Pinedo53 Member

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    9X18 Brass Conversion

    Thank you all for replying to my questions. Everyone gave me good answers and the youtube video referenced really helped me the best. That was great.
     
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