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Reloading for Glocks?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Bobson, Jun 20, 2012.

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  1. Bobson

    Bobson Member

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    Hey folks. I've been reading up on reloading a lot. Planning to reload .270 Win, 9x19, and .40S&W, for the time being. However, I've been reading that there's some issue I don't quite understand with reloading cases either already shot through Glocks... or cases that will be shot through a Glock. Frankly, I'm not entirely sure; and I have no clue why this would be true.

    Is this something of the past? Does anyone here even know what I'm referring to? The 40S&W is a Gen4 Glock 23. The 9x19 is a Ruger SR9. Just trying to figure out whether I'm good to go reloading factory cases fired through these guns. Thanks a bunch.
     
  2. 777TRUTH

    777TRUTH Member

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    In 9mm nothing really needs to be done.

    The .40 is a high pressure round and Glock has a loose unsupported chamber. If you reload the .40 fired from a Glock for another Glock you will probably have no issues. If you fire Glocked brass from say a CZ you may need a Lee Bulge Buster Kit lee-bulge-buster-kit/LEE or an EGW undersized reloading die undersized-reloading-dies/.

    For additional reading do a BING search for "Glocked Brass"
     
  3. hentown

    hentown Member

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    Lots of guys reload .40s for Glocks with no problems. I shoot nothing but my reloads through my several Glocks, but I don't/won't ever reload .40s. I just don't like .40s. In my humble opinion, the .40 is an ill-conceived and poorly-designed round.
     
  4. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    Bobson, the main issue you'll run into is that brass fired through Glocks (especially .40s) can get bulged near the case head, because the factory barrels leave the brass a little bit unsupported in that area. As 777TRUTH said, there are reloading dies made specifically to remove this low bulge, as standard resizing dies don't work the case down that low and miss it.

    If you're shooting range-pickup brass you can often tell which was fired through a Glock by looking for the bulge. (And, of course, by the rectangle firing pin mark.)

    Other somewhat Glock-specific issues are:
    1) That you want to be exceedingly cautious with your charge weights. .40S&W is a high-pressure round which can very easily be dangerously over-loaded, and overpressure + that relatively unsupported chamber are suspected to have contributed heavily to the reputation .40 cal Glocks developed for going "Kaboom."

    2) "Most" Glock shooters follow the factory recommendation to not fire cast lead bullets through the factory polygonal rifled barrels.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2012
  5. bds
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    bds Member

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    Glock does have a disclaimer that you shouldn't shoot reloads but guess what Glock competition shooters use? That's right, reloads! :eek: - http://www.atlantaarmsandammo.com/MATCH_AMMO/match_ammo.html
    I shoot reloads in my Glocks and if you want to shoot reloads in your Glocks, I would recommend you apply the usual safe reloading principles used for reloading for any other pistol.



    Some Gen1/Gen2 Glocks had less chamber support at the ramp area but Gen3/Gen4 Glocks now have improved support and are comparable to other brand factory barrels (my Gen3 G22/G27 barrels have comparable chamber support to my M&P40 barrel).

    Deciding whether to reload bulged brass should be part of your reloading QC steps as some other make barrels also bulge cases with some factory new or factory level reload pressures. Pictures below shows typical bulge you may see. The QC step I use to make the determination is when a bulged case won't fully resize, I will rotate the case 90 degrees and attempt to resize again. Most cases will resize fully on the second attempt but if they don't, I deem the case too far stretched and recycle the case as scrap metal. Some reloaders will use undersized U-die or Lee FCD to push-through resize bulged cases.

    If you reload mixed range brass, another thing to consider is the condition of the brass. I use mixed range brass but tend to use lower pressure mid-to-high range load data. I reserve verified once-fired brass for max loads. As with reloading for any other pistol, if you plan to reload max charge loads to shoot in Glocks, I would suggest safe reloading practice of having an accurate scale and used of check weights to verify the powder charges and not exceed published load data.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2012
  6. DaisyCutter

    DaisyCutter Member

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    I wouldn't worry about reloading Glocked brass after it's been appropriately resized.

    I don't reload for my Glocks, BUT that's because my little turret press would be miserable to use for that kind of volume. I like to sit down and make 50 rounds, not 200. Plus, my savings per round is greater for the .44 Mags I reload.
     
  7. Josh45

    Josh45 Member

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    I reload for a Glock 22 GEN 4 and have had no problems shooting reloads thru it.
    But because it does have an unsupported chamber, I do not load them very hot.
    If it gives good accuracy and recoil is decent, Then I would just stop there.

    Now, I do also load for 2 other .40 cal pistols.
    One is a Taurus PT-940 and the other is a PT-100. They both have used the brass that was used in the Glock before and had no trouble feeding the rounds into it. YMMV!.
     
  8. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    I have been reloading .40 S&W, including Linotype cast bullets, for a Gen 1 Glock 23 for 17 years without any problem at all.

    Don't try to get 10mm performance out of a .40 S&W, keep the chamber clean, and you will be fine.

    rc
     
  9. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Member

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    My factory Glock 22 Gen4 barrel provides pretty much the same near-the-case-web support for the round as any other barrel I've seen. My fired rounds are not bulged.

    I reload for my G22, and I have used the Lee bulge removal system for pick-up cases with almost complete success. I first resize with a standard RCBS carbide die, then test the cases in a Wilson gauge. Any that fail go through the Lee system. A half dozen or so cases out of a thousand or so have failed to fully resize after two passes through the Lee die; those are in the recycle brass bin.
     
  10. oneounceload

    oneounceload member

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    As does every gun maker - that is the legal team earning their pay
     
  11. mgmorden

    mgmorden Member

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    bds: In all fairness, Atlanta Arms and Ammo's match ammo may be basically assembled from parts, but all the brass is new. The issue of bulged cases and such isn't an issue with brand new brass.

    Even on Lee's Bulge Buster kit they have a disclaimer:

    Glock Cases: We do not recommend "fixing" cases fired in pistols with unsupported chambers, because there is no way to make them safe once they have bulged. The case wall is thinned where it bulges, and resizing the outside of the case back down to the correct diameter does not restore the case back to its original thickness. If this case is fired in a pistol with an unsupported chamber again, and this thinned section of brass happens to line up with the unsupported part of the chamber, there is a high probability that the case will rupture.

    I have a 9mm Glock that I shoot reloads in, but personally if I ever got a .40S&W Glock I'd probably shoot them only with aftermarket barrels. It does make me wonder why Glock has never changed their design on the chamber though. Virtually all the aftermarket barrels offer more support and don't seem to suffer from any adverse effects.
     
  12. bds
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    bds Member

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    mgmorden, I was simply making a point that people shoot reloads in their Glocks, including many regional/national level match shooters. :D
     
  13. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    Seems there's some confusion. Did or did not Glock modify the barrel design of the .40S&W guns to better support the chamber? If so, when?
     
  14. sellersm

    sellersm Member

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    Sam1911: I believe it was the Gen3 models that introduced the "more supported" chamber. Also, the G27 is supposed to have a very supported chamber, from anecdotal evidence of the many G27 owners, as opposed to the G22 anyway.

    No worries on reloading for the Glock 40, as RC said. I've been doing it for years for my Gen 3 G23C!
     
  15. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Member

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    All I know is my G22 Gen4 factory barrel seems to fully support rounds.

    Storm Lake barrel on the left, factory G22 Gen4 on the right. Ammo is as generic as it gets: WWB 165gr FMJ.
     

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  16. hentown

    hentown Member

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    Good support in that pic, on both barrels, but certainly not "fully" supported.
     
  17. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    ^ True, it's not fully supported. But it's supported beyond where the web ends, even over the ramp. And the rest of the web is pretty close to fully supported. If you bulge a case out of that barrel, you're doing something gravely wrong. This is the same amount of support you'll find in most all the other manufacturer's barrels. The only 40SW I know of that actually has full case head support is the XD.

    So OP, with a Gen4 40SW, you have nothing to worry about, beyond watching out for leading/fouling with the polygonal rifling. Just be skeptical of any brass you find which is already bulged. Unless it's obviously once-fired, it might be dangerous to reload for any brand firearm/barrel.

    THIS (Colt Delta) barrel certainly isn't "fully" supported. And it's deemed good 'nuff for 10mm, no less. Heck, even the Glock 20 appears to have less support than the current Glock 40s.
    http://forums.1911forum.com/showthread.php?t=337704
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2012
  18. sellersm

    sellersm Member

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    I didn't think any semi-auto "fully" supported anyway? You gotta have a revolver for that....
     
  19. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    If the XD chambers aren't fully supported, they come pretty darned close.
     
  20. bds
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    bds Member

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    Here's my Gen3 Glock barrel compared to Lone Wolf barrel. I would say the LW barrel "fully supports" the case base.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  21. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

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    GREAT pictures, and yes, there's a clear difference.
     
  22. 918v

    918v Member

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    What BDS shows in his photos are not bulged cases. They are normal expanded cases. The bulge buster dies are designed to size these to new spec as some dies won't.

    The warning applies to attempting to fix the following:

    glock-brass.jpg

    I hope you can see the difference.
     
  23. Tux

    Tux Member

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    Yea!!!....another who thinks like me.

    The whole FBI 9mm to .40SW seems like someone finding a solution to a problem which did not really exist, which was actually the 10mm. Oh but lets make it a shorter 10mm. I'm sure the ammo makers would love to get them all to switch to another caliber again.....profit, profit, profit.

    They should of gone with a hotter 9mm or the .45.
     
  24. bds
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    bds Member

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    918v, with all due respect, I believe the OP asked about normal expansion of cases that were fired in Gen4 Glock.
    I have shot quite a bit of Gen2/Gen3 Glocks and never seen a bulged case like the one pictured on the left. IMHO, that case looks to have been fired out of battery and underwent abnormal bulging that is atypical of bulged cases from 40S&W Glock barrels.

    glock-brass.jpg [​IMG]

    If case bulging occurs like that of the above picture on the right, that's due to the slightly enlarged mouth and chamber Glock did to ensure reliable feeding/chambering. You can see the larger chamber mouth in the comparison picture below. The larger mouth opening does reduce further down the chamber, but especially in older generation Glock barrels, the dimensions are more generous to allow greater expansion of the case wall.

    [​IMG]

    Yes, I would agree that some case expansion is normal from firing, but what I have noticed with factory new ammo/factory level pressure reloads shot in some Glock barrels is that case expansion is more than other factory barrels like my M&P40 and takes more effort to resize them. While reloading, when I come across a case that takes more effort to resize (or one that won't resize fully), the spent primer often shows the telltale sign of rectangle indentation from Glock breech wall face. As I posted previously, I will rotate the case 90 degrees and attempt to resize again. Even significantly bulged cases like the picture on the right above, most cases will fully resize in the Lee carbide resizing die on the second attempt. If the case won't fully resize on the second attempt, I will recycle the case for scrap metal, but that's me. Some reloaders elect to use undersize U-die or Lee FCD and I consider that OK if resizing of cases using these dies are done once and the powder/charge used won't significantly bulge the cases on subsequent reloadings (once you thinned the case wall, no amount of resizing will return the thickness of the case wall back ;)).

    I really think the focus of this thread discussion should be more on what happens to the brass case and prevention of case failure. If a case wall bulges significantly and resized repeatedly, work-hardening of the case wall will make the brass more brittle which may contribute to failure of the case. If the reloads are causing bulged cases, you can reduce the powder charge, switch to a different powder or use after-market barrel with tighter chamber that won't bulge the case. I think that's what the OP's question was about.
    If the factory loads bulge the cases, resizing once and reloading with lower pressure mid-to-high range load data should minimize the future bulging of the cases.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012
  25. GLOOB

    GLOOB Member

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    bds: I guess your mileage may vary, but my G27 doesn't even make the "normal" Glock bulge that you pictured.


    I believe you are correct.

    I don't own both to make a comparison, but it should also be pointed out that there are no Gen1 or Gen2 G27s. So you're not going to find any complaints about bulged brass out of a G27. There were lots and lots of Gen2 and "Gen2 1/2" G22's sold to law enforcement and which are now floating around in the secondhand market.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012
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