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Just Reloaded my first rounds

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Blank Stare 73, Sep 3, 2009.

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  1. Blank Stare 73

    Blank Stare 73 Member

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    I am excited and a little nervous to try them out, I guess we'll see in the morning. With the high cost of ammunition these days, I decided to try reloading..........I just want to say thankyou to this site and those on it whose posts I have quietly read and learned from, you are much appreciated.
     
  2. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Expecting a range report tomorrow then. They'll shoot just fine. ;)
     
  3. SalchaketJoe

    SalchaketJoe Member

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    Feels kinda nice doesnt it?

    Double double check your data and powder charges as you go. I like to hold the tray of charged cases under a light and make sure they are all the same.
    My dad taught me to weigh every charge, and i still do for rifle. For pistol, every five or six. But i also sport a single stage press so the goin is sloooooow
     
  4. Lee Roder

    Lee Roder Member

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    Congrats. What are you (anticipating) shooting? I'm new at lead and I can definitely now after 3 weeks and 2 range trips load way better ammo than I've been buying. :D First try loads may not show it though so don't be discouraged if your experience is similar to mine. This forum's a great place for help.
     
  5. Blank Stare 73

    Blank Stare 73 Member

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    I'm reloading for .45 Colt. I'm having a little issue with the bullet seating height contraption. I went the economical route and got the classic Lee Loader, just to see if I would enjoy reloading before I sunk more money into it............As I've indicated I've got a few rounds that are different heights, I think I've about got it where I want it now, but to be safe I'll stop for now and see how they shoot.
     
  6. Uncle Chan

    Uncle Chan Member

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    I load thousands of 45LC a year. I have the classic lee handloader, a lee hand press, a lee C single stage, a lee Cast Turret, and a Dillon. They all work fine, but are all fundamentally different. Basically, what I'm saying is if you have a bad experience with the handloader, don't give up. Try something else.
     
  7. Blank Stare 73

    Blank Stare 73 Member

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    Oh I have no intention of giving up, I'm hoping to be able to shoot more than ever before, while spending less than I did shooting every so often with the factory loads........I do see, however, the limitations of the dipper that comes with the kit. I have no way of knowing how many grains I'm getting, I assume it's lite. My next purchase will be a scale, for there I want to learn to cast my own bullets.
     
  8. Lee Roder

    Lee Roder Member

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    +5 on a balance.

    I use an old OHAUS 10-10.10 (like RCBS 10-10) metric scale I purchased 25 years ago as a grad student and weigh every charge just to be sure. I use my dippers just to throw the initial charge into the pan and then just "trickle" (using a dipper which I find easier and faster than using my RCBS trickler) up to my desired weight.
     
  9. MikeS.

    MikeS. Member

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    I started reloading back in April. So I understand the anexity. I used my Ruger SAs in .357 and .44 magnum since they are so heavy duty.

    I definitely suggest you get that scale and use it.

    Enjoy.
     
  10. mongoose33

    mongoose33 Member

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    I wore extra safety glasses and gloves the first time I shot mine. :)

    Very few feelings top that of having made, and sucessfully shot, your own ammo. And it's more accurate than factory, too.

    Congrats! Let us know how it went.
     
  11. Blank Stare 73

    Blank Stare 73 Member

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    Well, all but one of my rounds fired successfully!! The one that didn't fire wouldn't rotate around while in the cylinder because the primer was sticking out too far. Overall I'm pretty happy.............on a side note, While trying to decap some more rounds the pin broke off of my decapping tool, and I just got the thing! I am a little ticked
     
  12. kle

    kle Member

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    If you're going to stick with it, you should get a manual that includes load data for .45 Colt, a scale that can measure in tenths of grains, and a kinetic bullet puller. The manual will let you know the ball-park ranges for charge weights, so that you can safely reload without over- or under-charging the cases. With the scale, measure out 10 charges and then weigh them, and divide by 10 to get your average charge-weight (it's easier for my scale to measure 31.0gr for 10 charges of W231 rather than 3.1gr for 1 charge of W231). The bullet puller is, obviously, in case you make a mistake. Or if you find some discarded rounds at the range and want to dismantle them to recover the components.

    You should be able to seat the high primer in a bit better on that one round that caused cylinder binding, and then you should be able to shoot it.
     
  13. Marlin 45 carbine

    Marlin 45 carbine Member

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    welcome to handloading

    the case may not have been centered in the die is one possiblity the pin broke. if a Lee die they will stand good for it, good customer service.
    that Lee press is OK and later on you may get another single stage as a 'companion' and set them up n tandem. that's what I have a Chucker and a Lee in tandem.
    if you have a shooting buddy to run the seat/crimp die for pistol rounds after you have it set you'll be surprised how many rounds you can load in an evening.
    use that Lee hand prime tool, don't be afraid to give it a good 'squeeze', it does great. point it away from you when seating a primer, any possible set off will be directed in the direction you have it pointed. I've primed thousands and no problems with 'stick-out' or set-off.
    and welcome to the Handloading page.
     
  14. Aliencane

    Aliencane Member

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    I went to the range yesterday and shot my first reloads ever (.38 spl). All rounds fired nicely. Didn't seem any different from factory ammo. I'm pleased. This looks like a great hobby for me, and will make range visits a little cheaper.

    BTW, since I can't get any primers, I very gently decapped live primers from 9mm Blazer ammo to use in my reloads (I have 1800 rounds of 9mm). I saved the Speer bullets to be used at some later time.
     
  15. nulfisin

    nulfisin Member

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    Don't decap live rounds

    I'm happy that it worked for you. It would be nuts to try it again. Primers wil be back soon enough and you'll keep your eyes and fingers. Shoot the .9 mm for now.
     
  16. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Blank Stare 73

    When priming your cases just be more careful to get the primers flush so you won't have the problem you had with the one reload. Primers that are not seated all the way are also the number one cause of "light strikes" where the primer doesn't fire.


    Aliencane

    Decapping live primers is fine. It's done all the time. Best to just use a universal decapper, or say a .45 for a .44 so no sizing is going on, and just gently deprime them. No worries.


    Primers are showing back up, so that is good news for everyone. :)
     
  17. Blank Stare 73

    Blank Stare 73 Member

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    Well, I'm pretty sure I know why the primer didn't seat right. I was using large rifle primers, mainly because they were all I could find and the gentleman at the store told me they would work fine, but I may have to use a reaming tool. I seated that one without reaming the case first, and that is most likely why it didn't fit.............again I'm new at this, so I used the reaming tool on the remainder of the rounds I loaded and I was able to seat the primers better. I did have one go off on me, but no harm done.

    I'm fairly certain if I had large pistol primers this would not have happened, but I won't know until I find some. All in all it has been a little time consuming to start with. I cleaned the brass, now I have to ream all the brass and then size, re-prime, flare, charge and seat the bullet............as far as the decapper breaking, I went to a hardware store and bought a punch which was the right size and it seems to work well.

    If the large rifle primers are a bad idea someone please tell me, I'm not one of those guys who thinks I know everything, I just used them based on the advice of an older gentleman who said he had been reloading for 53 years and that they would work.

    Thanks
     
  18. Landric

    Landric Member

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    Large rifle primers are not exactly the same size as large pistol primers, so its a bad idea to try and use LR primers for LP loads. Small Pistol and Small Rifle primers are the same size, and sometimes can be interchanged, but that is something for a more experienced handloader to work with. In general, its best to stick with exactly what the recipe calls for, especially when one is new at it.
     
  19. rfwobbly

    rfwobbly Member

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    Welcome to reloading !

    You're correct. If you want to load faster and have more accurate ammo, then forget the dippers. Your next goal should be to discover the best loads for your pistol and know their powder amounts within 0.1gr.

    The best way to achieve this is to look around for something like a good used RCBS Uni-Flow powder measure and a RCBS 5-0-5 scale. They've made these items since the 70's so there are plenty of used ones on the market. Use the scale to set the powder drop on the Uni-Flow. From then on, the Uni-Flow will "drop" the exact same amount of powder.

    Then, after installing the primers, set the cases (mouth up) into a loading block. Offer the loading block to the Uni-Flow and go down one row at a time until every case in the block has powder. With the loading block back on the table top, use a flashlight to check for "no loads" and (worse yet) "double loads". Now you're ready to seat your bullets. See attachment.

    This is absolutely the fastest and most accurate way to load bulk pistol ammo without having a progressive press.

    Hope this helps!
     

    Attached Files:

  20. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Yep, they are "taller", plus they have thicker cups, which in its self makes them a bit harder to seat.
     
  21. Blank Stare 73

    Blank Stare 73 Member

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    Well, I certainly appreciate and value all of the advice, I will definately get scale and powder measure if that will make the loads more uniform and speed up the process a bit............Once again this forum proves itself an invaluable resource.
     
  22. krs

    krs Member

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    You can get away with using small rifle primers in pistol cartridges, but not large rifle for the reasons that Walkalong gave. Maybe that's where your store man got confused.

    Thing is though - using large rifle primers in large pistol cases can put the primer into the headspacing because they're taller, and if you have an inertia firing pin you could get a slamfire going into battery. Dangerous stuff.

    It's best not to listen to store salesmen unless you KNOW they have personal using knowledge - like they are longtime reloaders.

    The reason your depriming pin broke is probably not the pin's fault. If you make even a small mistake you can snap pins easily. Things like rotating a turret or progressive press while the pin is too close to a ram are the kind of mistake, and so is not having the case lined up on the ram so it jams as you go up into the sizer die. It's part of what eventually comes natural, but don't blame a pin for breaking. If you don't figure out where you went wrong you'll break lots of depriming pins.
     
  23. rick300

    rick300 Member

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    Blank Stare, I'm also a newb so take this with however grains you may, but I believe your approach to this new hobby is a little bit casual. First you started without a scale and second you substituted primers (on your first loads?). I'm sure ther are plenty of reloaders here that can do these things at will, but they have been reloading for most of my life and I'm not a young man. I'm having "loads" of fun reloading but if I can't find a load in any of my books I ask here before I procede. So far these people seem to be more than happy to help. (Thanks all!) Nobody here ever put me down for asking a question and I'll continue to ask to keep shooting safe. I strongly suggest that before you make more substitutions you ask questions. Just saying, be careful.....Rick
     
  24. RoostRider

    RoostRider Member

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    Using a scoop powder measure is fine, so long as you have the chart for the powder you are using.... I did it for years before I got 'fancy' and got a scale.... I never loaded to the top of the chart, because I knew there was some possible error in there...

    I dispose of cases with live primers that I can't use.... I would rather loose a primer than even have to deal with the noise of one going off in my reload room.... much less the heart palpitations that must follow...

    I would never use a recovered primer anyways, because primers are assemblies, and you stand a good chance of screwing up the assembly by pressing it out backwards from the way it was designed to be installed.... sure, it might work most of the time.... how much does a primer cost these days?

    I would also NEVER have started my reloading using substituted components because the "sales guy" said it would work fine... unless I knew the sales guy had a vested interest in my safety, and was well educated on the subject.... (both must apply)

    I agree that you are taking a rather cavalier attitude towards beginning reloading, and it may come back to bite you in the end... careful inspection of every component and every process is integral to getting ammo that is even safe, much less the ideal of most reloaders of having better ammo than is available for retail sales.

    Making your own ammunition can be fun, and save you money, if done correctly and safely. I can understand the desire to 'jump ahead' even though you don't have all the components you need. But that is not the type of thing you should take so lightly. The ignorance of the 'sales guy' at the shop you consulted is obvious by his negligent advice (they call them different things BECAUSE THEY ARE DIFFERENT).... if he has been reloading for over 50 years he has seen countless fools reload haphazardly and pay the price in one form or another... I question his claims and his credentials as a reload advisor... but he wouldn't be the first "know it all" counter guy at a reload shop that I have ever met...

    Stop and re-evaluate your process and see where the mistakes were made and correct for them. Be vigilant with every step of the process. Follow the manuals (including the recipe right down to the primer) until you are comfortable enough with the rules to test them, and you will be just fine.
     
  25. Blank Stare 73

    Blank Stare 73 Member

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    Well, I can assure you I am not being cavalier and crazy,perhaps a little ignorant, but considering up until last week I had NO Knowledge of reloading whatsoever, I feel pretty good.

    He sold me 9 1/2 rifle primers, told me I may have to ream out the primer pocket (turns out I did) and so far i've reloaded 100 rds. I fired a couple of cylinders worth yesterday and they worked great. So, now I know I can use 9 1/2 rifle primers with .45 LC cases if need be.

    I can certainly see how some would think I'm being a little cavalier, but I just honestly wanted to learn how to reload and not spend $1.00 per round. I am extremely happy so far.

    Thanks to those of you who have been helpful and encouraging.
     
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