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Need help with 45 acp snake shot

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Quickdraw McGraw, May 30, 2008.

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  1. Quickdraw McGraw

    Quickdraw McGraw Member

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    Currently trying to replicate the CCI shot shells for 45 acp using 308 brass. I cut the brass to the same length as the shotshell then necked to the top of the brass down using 40 S&W sizing die. So that it chambers. Everything seems good except that once I load with Bullseye, wads, #8 shotshell, and plastic wad I cannot get it to crimp. I tried 45 acp seating die to get a roll crimp, which I thought would hold the plastic wad in place and the shot. Instead of crimping it just sort of smashes the top of the brass. Any input as to how I could I could crimp the casing would be greatly appreciated!

    Here's a few of what I have to this point. Here's what I'm trying to replicate.
    [​IMG]

    Here's one ready to crimp
    [​IMG]

    Heres 2 failures to crimp. I even tried making small cuts with hacksaw to help with the crimp - to no avail
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Member

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    Because of the thickness of the parent case, you're going to have a difficult time getting the brass to roll crimp. My suggestion would be to glue the overshot wads in place and call it good.

    I believe RCBS once made dies specifically for making snakeshot loads, but they were very expensive. I haven't checked in recent years to see if they still offer them.

    Hope this helps.

    Fred
     
  3. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    I was doing something similar and made a homemade crimper. It was a 1/4 thick piece of steel. I drilled a hole in it, then another hole almost as deep. That left a ridge that I worked on a bit, and fashioned it to crimp. I would use a vise to crimp. Crude, but it worked. I wish I could remember where it was to post a pic. Where there is a will there is a way. Keep at it.

    Maybe a .400 Corbon crimp die would work. Hmmm......

    Freds idea of gluing it would solve the dilemma and be easier to boot though. ;)
     
  4. Quickdraw McGraw

    Quickdraw McGraw Member

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    Fred what type of glue would you suggest?

    Thanks
    QM
     
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    I have successfully done exactly what you are doing with .308 case /.45 ACP shotshells, and star crimped them.

    It will help a bunch to anneal the case mouth after you get it cut down.

    You need to use a v-edge tool of some sort to go around the mouth and start several evenly spaced bends after you seat the top wad.
    Then finish off bending the star in a smaller die that it will enter.

    I even got them to feed & cycle the action on a 1911!

    Different caliber, but same principal:
    .380 ACP shotshells from .223 cases.
    [​IMG]

    .380 ACP shotshell pattern
    [​IMG]

    I have also left them un-crimped and glued the top wad in with Elmers glue.
    But they won't feed in a lot of guns.

    rcmodel
     
  6. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Member

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    I would use something like Elmer's Glue, since it's just about the right strength. I've used it on similar projects, and it dries pretty fast and gives you enough holding power to get the job done. I also believe it won't harm the bore. At least it didn't harm mine when I was making .41 caliber snake loads from .30-30 brass.

    Hope this helps.

    Fred
     
  7. the_right_reverend

    the_right_reverend Member

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    Huntington Reloading supplies offers .45 ACP SHOTSHELL DIES

    http://www.huntingtons.com/dies_rcbs.html

    Cut and form the case per the dies...

    prime charge (forget the powder and charge i use have to research it....)

    use a .410 wad over the powder , trim the excess wad flush with the mouth of case, fill with shot slightly below the top place a .32 cal round ball on top and roll crimp. this method will cycle the 45. the photo shows me using a .44 gas check.......but the cycling is a little shakey.......


    [​IMG][/IMG]
     
  8. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Member

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    Cute snake, RC...........

    Fred
     
  9. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Yep!
    Could have been better though!

    I had a heck of a time holding him down in that paper plate while I traced around him!

    Dang little varmint kept trying to bite me for some fool reason!

    rcmodel
     
  10. Marlin 45 carbine

    Marlin 45 carbine Member

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    RCBS makes the dies to form this shell, I have them and have loaded many for myself and friends. you might consider buying formed brass (from .45 Win mag cases) then load them useing the sizing-crimping die from RCBS.
    the load uses a .410 shot cup. does OK at 20 ft. on small game and such. and will cycle the action and feed from the mag.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2008
  11. Vacek

    Vacek Member

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    CE Harris wrote an article just on this. It is a long document covering several types of shot shells for handguns. Here is the part on the 45 ACP

    In the early 1970s, while serving in the military, I developed a
    handloaded .45 ACP shot cartridge which was used by friends as an
    aircrew surevival load. It could be mixed interchangeably in a
    magazine with Ball ammunition, which would feed and operate the
    pistol semi-automatically. I refined the load later and
    described it in American Rifleman, April, 1976 p.20. This
    article is also reprinted in the NRA booklet on The .45
    Automatic.

    These .45 Shot shell cases are made from .308 Winchester or 7.62
    NATO cases, by using an extended shell holder to push lubricated
    cases into the forming die, which are cut off with a fine-toothed
    hacksaw, filed flush, and inside deburred while in the die. Use
    of .30-'06 cases or others with a narrow extraction groove may
    cause extractor breakage. Cases should NOT be annealed because
    the extractor may tear through the rim, due to the mouth
    obturating into the rifling upon firing.

    To prepare cases for loading they are outside deburred, full-
    length sized, primed, and flared slightly. The recommended
    starting powder charge is 6.2 grs. of WW231. No changes powder
    substitutions or changes other than minor adjustments to obtain
    reliable functioning, are recommended. This exact powder charge
    is gun specific as not all will function reliably with the same
    charge. This load functions most reliably in slightly worn bores
    which do not have a sharp origin of the rifling. Start with the
    suggested charge and load just a magazine full to try. If they
    cycle, great. If they don't, examine the fired cases.

    A too heavy charge causes the case to obturate into the rifling,
    causing stovepipes from hard extraction. This is the hardest to
    convince reloaders of -- everyone thinks the more powder, the
    better the extraction -- it AIN'T always so! If you can see
    distinct rifling marks on the case, particularly if accompanied
    by rim distortion, reduce the charge 0.3 grain and things will
    work better. If you get jams from short recoil (most jams in
    this load will be stovepipes regardless of whether too little or
    too much powder) there are NO marks on the mouth of the case.
    That means the charge is too light, so increase it 0.3 grain. If
    the powder load is JUST right, you should have very light rifling
    marks on the case mouth, with no obvious rim distortion and the
    gun will cycle with near perfection.

    The only correct wad to use is the Remington SP410 shot cup used
    for 1/2 oz. .410 bore skeet loads. Others do not fit properly in
    the cut-off rifle brass. Seat the wad firmly over the powder
    charge using a 3/8" dowel and a few light blows with a plastic
    mallet. Then trim the protruding wad tabs off flush with the
    case mouth using a sharp knife. The case holds about 105 +/- 5
    grains of No.8 or #9 shot.

    Good results can be had using .35 cal. gas checks for the top
    wad. Just fill the case and shot cup full to 1/16" below the
    case mouth and place the gascheck cup down on the top of the
    load. The gascheck will find its way to the right place and the
    case will crimp onto it giving a finished shell with a nice
    appearance.

    Typical velocity is 1200 f.p.s. in the M1911A1 pistol and
    patterns average 70% in a 15" circle at 25 feet. This produces
    10 pellet hits in a 5" diameter target, simulating a small game
    animal, and defines the maximum effective range for this load on
    snakes or small game. A good handgun shot can break clay birds
    from stations 1, 7 or 8 on a skeet field fairly easily. I have
    found with No. 8 shot they are sure killers on cottontails to 10
    yards. I don't recommend shot larger than No. 8 as the patterns
    are too thin. The .45s pattern about as well as ordinary .44
    Magnum shot shells (not the longer "Hot Shot") in a Thompson
    Contender with choke tube, but you have a 7-shot semi-auto!

    The dies for forming the cases and reloading this .45 ACP shot
    shells are available from RCBS, but are a bit pricey. Remington
    and CCI both offer factory loaded .45 ACP shot shells for
    occasional users who can't justify the expenditure of time and
    money to set up and make their own.

    To sum up, any outdoorsman who carries a handgun afield on a
    routine basis needs a few shot loads occasionally. Whether you
    handload them or buy them, get a few. I don't use all that many,
    maybe a half-dozen a year, but when I get surprised by a
    copperhead or rattler in the woodpile or outhouse, they are sure
    comforting! And then, there's always a chance that a grouse may
    appear under my tree stand during deer season...
     
  12. rg1

    rg1 Member

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    Shortening .308 cases that much must get into the harder portion of the case. Have you tried annealing the necks of your shortened brass? A propane torch to just heat the neck of your new formed cases until it starts to turn blue or slightly very dull red and then tip them over into a container of water. That might soften the neck enough to perform the crimp you want.
     
  13. Quickdraw McGraw

    Quickdraw McGraw Member

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    Gonna give annealing a try today. Thanks for all the help so far.
     
  14. BigJakeJ1s

    BigJakeJ1s Member

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    Hey I bet that RCBS die set would work like a charm on trimmed down 460 S&W brass for cylinder-length 45 colt or 454 shot shells.

    CH4D also has a die which will put the shoulder on 45acp for a crimped blank, but I don't think it will have the roll crimp.

    Andy
     
  15. GP100man

    GP100man Member

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    glue

    i`ve come to the conclusion that elmers water proof carpenters glue was up to the task of holdin the shot cards in on my 357 & 44 shotshells.
    the real test was to shoot a 5 rounds of 180 & 310 gr boolits to see if i could shake it loose , it held purty good !!!!!


    GP100man
     
  16. Marlin 45 carbine

    Marlin 45 carbine Member

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    .45 Win mag brass makes formed shot cases that don't need to be trimmed and are much easier to form than the rifle brass.
    anyone intersted in buying some formed cases contact me if you wish. you will still have to have the RCBS sizeing'decap die( to reload fired cases or you can send them to someone that has the die), the expander (if you send off for sizeing get them expanded also) and the seating/crimping die. I really enjoy these shot loads and feel every .45acp owner should have a dozen or 2 for emergency use. the hard part is forming the cases. takes some time to load the cup and trim then load shot, capping and crimping is easy.
    I have taken rabbit and grouse with mine and my Camp .45acp.
     
  17. toecutter

    toecutter Member

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    I made some of these a while ago, but havn't had much time to really develop the idea. Thanks for posting the article about it. I have been looking for that reference material for a while.

    The few that I made were done by first trimming the cases with a slit-saw on the mill using a custom jig so I could do 10 at a whack. I don't remember what the OAL was, but it was slightly shorter than a loaded ACP OAL, I think about 1.210" (vs 1.26" for SAAMI max) they were then full length sized in a carbide .45 ACP sizer, then jammed into a lee push-through sizer for .44 cast bullets (.429") I adjusted the opening on the die so the cases would index more squarely with a lathe. They were then primed, charged, I used a thick fiber-wad from a .410, but the .410 shot-cup would probably work better. Loaded some #12 (because I had a bunch) and then star crimped using a CH4D star-crimper. They dropped into the chamber just fine, but I don't think I used enough powder, or there was some other problem as they didn't cycle all that reliably (the slide usually didn't come back far enough to strip another round).

    If you are thinking of doing any quantity of these, you may want to purchase the dies RCBS sells (I think they are about $75) or buy a star-crimper. The star-crimper can also be used to make blanks.
     
  18. Quickdraw McGraw

    Quickdraw McGraw Member

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    Star Crimping Dies

    I'm thinking of getting the star crimper from CH4D. Even though I am using 308 necked to to 40 s&w I would still want the 45? Here is the link:

    http://www.ch4d.com/

    I figure part # BC045 would be the one for me to order? Anybody verify that for me.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Marlin can you post a link the RCBS dies you refer to, there seems to be a lot of different dies. Also, how do you get the 45 Win Mag brass to chamber in 45 acp. They would have to be necked down of something. Can you explain this a little more maybe even with some pics. I just pulled out my Hornady manual and 45 win mag is basically a long 45 acp. This sounds perfect. I've gotten a lot of good advice here just need to weed through it!

    Thanks Guys
    QM
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2008
  19. toecutter

    toecutter Member

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    Yea, Dave at CH4D has produced most of the star-crimp dies I've used. You can usually just buy the crimping attachment, and then throw it in a size die to hold the case steady during crimping. The CH4D dies are definately the easiest to use, and produce a nice rounded crimp. I've used some that were made by hornady, and they were kinda've a pain to use.

    I dug around through the RCBS catalog, the custom order dies are no longer listed in the catalog, so you are going to have to call them directly. This used to be a custom order item.
     
  20. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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  21. gloriavoxdei

    gloriavoxdei Member

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    You guys think this could be done for a .40 S&W using 10mm brass and maybe a .357 sig sizing die that's backed out a 1/4 in or so?
     
  22. WinchesterAA

    WinchesterAA Member

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    Does shooting shot from a rifled pistol barrel damage the rifling any?
     
  23. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    NO.

    It will most certainly lead the barrel unless you use Speer ShotCaps, but lead shot is made from the same lead that lead bullets are made from.

    It is way softer then steel and can do no harm to a barrel.

    rcmodel
     
  24. Quickdraw McGraw

    Quickdraw McGraw Member

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    Thats good to know the die is $78.19 while the crimp insert is only $28.62. I think I'm gonna give CH4D a call tomorrow.

    Right now the RCBS dies a just a little too rich for my blood. Maybe down the road. Thanks again to all who have helped so far.
     
  25. the_right_reverend

    the_right_reverend Member

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    differently not cheap my set was over $100 25 years ago
     
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