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Powder Burn on Outside of Brass

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by wjohnson1983, Apr 1, 2013.

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  1. wjohnson1983

    wjohnson1983 Member

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    Hello,

    New to reloading here, but I do have several friends that have been doing it for years. I've managed to stump them though.

    So far I've made three different loads.

    .45 colt, Winchester Brass, Federal LP, 6.5 gr of TiteGroup, and 200 gr RNFP from HSM.

    .357 Magnum using Winchester brass, h110 powder, and federal small pistol magnum primers. One is a 125gr Sierra JHP with 21 grains of powder and the other is a 140 gr Hornady XTP with 17.1 grains of powder. Both of those loads are minimum loads by the books I have.

    All of these loads are generating powder burn/residue on the outside of the brass and cylinders of the revolvers that I haven't seen with factory ammo. I've shot 5 rounds and then checked the 6th for bullet creep, but no issues there with the crimp.
     
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Low pressure is not expanding the case to seal it.

    Bump up your loads.

    rc
     
  3. 45lcshooter

    45lcshooter Member

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    Its perfectly fine. I get powder residue on 45lc all the time using Unique from the low end to the high end of the load spectrum.
     
  4. Speedster00

    Speedster00 Member

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    I get it too on my 45 ACP loading 6.2 gr of Power pistol. Low pressure load for the range but if the gun cycles, let it ride.


    RC- while I know its the case not expanding enough, can you explain the actual reasoning?? seems wierd that you need to expand more to Not have gas escape..
     
  5. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

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    Solvent cleanses all, Grasshopper.
     
  6. Jon_Snow

    Jon_Snow Member

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    At rest, the case is slightly smaller than the chamber, this allows the case to fit easily. When the powder ignites, (ideally) the pressure causes the case to expand and seal itself against the edges of the chamber. If you don't have enough pressure, then it doens't seal completely and some of the hot gas escapes around to the space between the case and the chamber wall. Happens all the time on my 45 loads, no cause for concern besides dirtying the chamber a little more than hotter loads would.
     
  7. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    The cartridge case is the gas seal in the chamber.

    If it expands quickly and fully under high pressure, there is no gas leakage past it to leave burns.

    If it doesn't, powder gas and soot get between the case and chamber wall.

    rc
     
  8. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    Oh well, nothing left to do here... I agree.
     
  9. sellersm

    sellersm Member

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    And even less to do here....

    Except to say that I get this with some of my powderpuff plinking loads in various calibers. Nothing to worry about. Just a bit more time in the tumbler!
     
  10. wjohnson1983

    wjohnson1983 Member

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    Thanks for all the replies.

    Yes it does clean right off ;) I was just making sure there wasn't anything I missed/dangerous with my loads. From what I'm hearing though is that it shouldn't cause a problem, but I can try to remedy the situation by bumping up from the minimum book loads.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2013
  11. Speedster00

    Speedster00 Member

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    all good info guys. thanks.
     
  12. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Member

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    Of course the information given by rcmodel and the others is spot on. However, if it doesn't bother you to have the sooty cases, it won't hurt anything. I shoot light loads in .38 special and some light Trail Boss loads in .45 Colt. They both leave the cases cloudy from powder residue, but I don't mind it. That's why god made crushed corn cob. Or maybe that wasn't his only reason.
     
  13. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    Is the entire case evenly sooted, or primarily on one side? I ask because I experienced a position sensitive burn situation using HS6 with that cartridge at starting charges. I added a dacron filler, and it completely eliminated the issue. But I gather that you are not getting it up just one side of the case, yes? This would clearly be evidence of low pressure in most circumstances.

    As for .357 mag., I don't recall ever experiencing a sooty burn with H110 / 296 loads, but I also don't load minimum charges with that powder either.

    In either cartridge bumping the charge up some should clean things up.

    GS
     
  14. wjohnson1983

    wjohnson1983 Member

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    It is located on just one side of the case and travels about 1/3 - 1/2 of the way down the case towards the rim.
     
  15. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    Sounds like the powder is position sensitive to me. Either try bumping the charge up, changing to a different more bulky powder, or using a filler to hold the powder against the case head / flash hole.

    Try this, hold the firearm straight up and give it a light tap. Lower it very slowly, but don't let it point down at all, and fire it. It will not have the same sooty appearance on just one side it it is a powder position issue.

    GS
     
  16. exbrit49

    exbrit49 Member

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    low pressure

    I load pretty much all the handgun calibers and the only time I see powder soot down the case is when I am working up a new load. I usually start at the recommended start charge and then load up in .2g steps.
    With most loads I have worked up I usually see sooty cases on the low end of the test rounds. In every case, as I get close to a mid range load, the soot disappears.
    Cant say for sure that low pressure loads are the cause of your problems, but based on what I see working up new loads, it sure sounds like low pressure is the most probable cause.
    As others have said if the action cycles ok then it isn't a problem other than being dirty.
    Personally I would reload and increase the powder by .1 or .2 grains till you get good performance and accuracy with a clean burn. Use a chrono if possible and watch for pressure signs as you work up the load
    Roger
     
  17. Searcher4851

    Searcher4851 Member

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    As stated by RC and others, it's just a low pressure issue. Nothing to worry about.
     
  18. zxcvbob

    zxcvbob Member

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    Part of it is just a Titegroup thing -- I've seen the same thing when I tried it in .38 Specials. It is made worse by the oversize chambers that .45 Colts always have, the straight case sides with no taper, and the low pressure you're loading to.

    If you otherwise like the loads, don't worry about it. If you increase the powder the problem will get less, but probably not go away until you switch powders (try Red Dot for light loads)
     
  19. 1SOW

    1SOW Member

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    Going to a single base powder like Vihtavuori 320/330 in the 45 will also lessen the soot problem with light loads. Costs more, but not much more per round.

    Or as said, just shoot 'em and wipe it down.
     
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