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First time 45 acp problem

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Gadawg88, Feb 9, 2013.

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  1. Gadawg88

    Gadawg88 Member

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    Finally got my powder and primers. This is my first ever reload. Using Nosler sporting pistol .451 230 gn FMJ flat nose. Testing for proper COL using plunk test I arrived at 1.215 or there abouts. Also emailed Nosler for proper COL and they sent load data with a COL of 1.20. So I make some dummy rounds to test function. Round chambers no problem, eject but when I measure the COL has dropped to 1.205. Repeat with same round and it drops second time to 1.188. I am assuming this is not normal and not acceptable. I pulled the bullet and re-did the dummy round (using same case and bullet) back to 1.215 but this time tightened down the crimp about 3/4 turn. I am using Lee classic turret press with Lee 4 die set using LFCD to set crimp. So second try was crimped with about 1.5 to 1.75 turns of the adjusting screw. Is my problem not enough crimp or am I off base somewhere else. Thanks.
     
  2. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    Increasing the crimp on cartridges that head space on the mouth is only going to cause the problem to get worse, and cause other issues as well including FTF's due to too much head space. Neck tension on these type of cartridges is attained by resizing alone.

    When you crimp these type cases you only want to apply enough to remove the bell, no more than that, or you'll decrease neck tension. So measure the case just above the base of the seated bullet, that is what it should measure at the mouth after crimping.

    You may have over crimped to begin with, and you may be over belling the case mouth. Only bell the mouth enough to allow for bullet seating without shaving, no more than that.

    Also measure your expander on the resizing die to be sure it isn't opening the mouth up too much during resizing.

    RC should have the low down on expander specs.

    GS
     
  3. Hondo 60
    • Contributing Member

    Hondo 60 Member

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    With a completed round, caliper your brass just a frog's hair below the bullet.
    45 ACP should be at .469-.470

    Sounds like you may be crimping too much.

    Hope this helps.
    Good Luck
     
  4. edfardos

    edfardos Member

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    cycling a round through the action always shortens the coal in my experience. It's illadvised to do it more than once on a live cartridge imho.

    edfardos
     
  5. DaBruins

    DaBruins Member

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    I encountered the same problem a few months ago, posted a thread, and received excellent advice from rcmodel and rondog which solved the problem. It's caused by an oversize powder thru expander die, which is stretching the case mouth after it's been resized, and it's reducing the neck tension on the bullet.

    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=693500

    Check out post #17 and #18 for a detailed explanation of the fix
     
  6. mdi

    mdi Member

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    Lose the FCD and get a plain taper crimp die. Sometimes the FCD will swage the bullet and case down during post seating sizing and the brass springs back but the bullet doesn't (yes, it's possible to swage a FMJ bullet enough to loosen the neck tension). For 45 ACP ammo, a "true" crimp in not needed nor wanted. Just "crimp" enough to remove any flare in the case mouth to enable good chambering. Neck tension should hold the bullet in place (assemble a round without running it through the FCD, or any crimp, and see how tight the bullet is in the case...).
     
  7. Gadawg88

    Gadawg88 Member

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    Thanks DaBruins and by extension rcmodel and rondog. Exactly on point with my issue. Just curious if you resolved your issues. Did you buff the expander plug as suggested and if so did that improve things? I measured mine and it is also .451. I re-adjusted my dies and backed off the crimp on the lfcd and loaded up 20 rounds. I was getting .469 to .470 on each. I also was getting almost no resistance from the lfcd so I don't think it was swaging the round, but I could be wrong.
     
  8. chris in va

    chris in va Member

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    My 45 FCD doesn't touch the case either, and it just puts a light taper crimp on the case.
     
  9. DaBruins

    DaBruins Member

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    Using emery cloth to take down the expander plug worked wonders, and eliminated the set-back problem. It worked so well, I used the same procedure on my 9mm expander plug and I could feel an immediate difference with the amount of resistance the case provided when seating the bullet. In both cases, I used a resized case as a gauge, buffing the "pilot" section of the expander plug until the case would easily slide up to the tapered step. When I set up the powder through expander die, I screwed in the die until the case mouth just touches the tapered step, then adjusted it in very small increments (1/8th turn or less) until I had a slight belling of the case. I have the fcd set "very light", so it only removes the belling yet allows the loaded cartridge to pass the plunk test.
     
  10. Gadawg88

    Gadawg88 Member

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    Thanks for the follow-up. I will try my 20 test loads and if I get too much setback I will try buffing the expander plug. Glad you got your issue resolved.
     
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