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Breech Face Erosion

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by rube12345, Oct 27, 2010.

  1. rube12345

    rube12345

    25
    0
    Nov 12, 2009
    Hello,

    While cleaning after shooting 1500 rnds over a few days I noticed a ring of erosion around the striker slot in the breech face. I had noticed a slight ring before but I am pretty sure the ring became more pronounced in the last few days.
    The loads used were made with Remington SPP. Since I switched to this batch of primers I have at times noted soot on the back of the brass which appears to be coming back from around the primer. I do not think I have noticed this with reloads before. I just sorted some brass and found 13 rounds with soot out of approx 250 fired. The majority seemed to be Blazer but also saw Speer, Remington and Federal.
    Gun is a Gen 2 G17 which has been well used.
    Loads were made with range pickup brass sorted to remove off brands and damaged brass. Remington 1 1/2 SPP (not newly purchased - on the shelf for years), Unique powder, Montana Gold 115gr HP. I worked up to the load over time and it is well within maximum loads in several references. Loads were done on Dillon equipment, with all rounds case gaged.
    I suspect that the erosion is being caused by gasses venting backward around the primer cup. Does this make sense? How do I stop this from happening. Is it likely an issue with the primers? I thought I had read some time ago about an issue with some Remington primers, but I'm not sure about this. If it is a brass issue how would I go about solving that?
    I am looking to replenish primers. If it is a primer issue can someone recommend primers to stay away from? CCI, Wolf and Tula seems to be the most inexpensive and instock now. I have loaded with CCI in the past but am leary of Wolf and Tula just because I have not loaded with them before.

    Thank you for your input.

    rube
     

    Attached Files:

  2. dudel

    dudel

    4,983
    527
    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country
    Loose primer pockets? Sometimes caused by worn brass that has been used for hot loads in the past. On more reason to sort by headstamp. You get a consistent feel for the primer seating, and the odd loose one stands out.
     

    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010

  3. PCJim

    PCJim Senior Member

    2,950
    1
    Aug 4, 2008
    FL
    Rube, you're definitely getting gas cutting from the primer pockets. Being that there are several different brands of cases present in your pic that are showing the tell-tale soot ring, I'd bet that you have a batch of slightly undersized primers. Grab your calipers and compare their diameter with a differing lot or SAAMI standards.

    It is possible (but unlikely) that since these casings are RPUs, they could simply be overstretched pockets due to numerous firings. The reason I state unlikely is that the headstamps do not appear to have had significant reductions/markings that typically indicate same.

    After performing the measurement comparison, let us know what your results are.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  4. Boxerglocker

    Boxerglocker Jacks #1 Fan

    6,146
    26
    Mar 6, 2003
    Lynnwood, WA
    The Wolf/Tula primers had issues with cetain batches last year. I when through well over 10K last year alone... they are hard to seat, but in this particular case with your issue, it might actually relieve some problems.

    I agree with Dudel when he states 'Loose primer pockets?.... One more reason to sort by headstamp. You get a consistent feel for the primer seating, and the odd loose one stands out."

    However, I personally don't have the time or the patience for it. a 2K a month I rotate anywhere between 5-7K in brass. I only sort headstamp for match days and the important ones at that.
     
  5. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,933
    166
    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    I know you said your load is not too hot. Publish it here to double check it. GR, Powder, OAL, Bullet (type/weight).

    Are you fully seating all the primers?

    Can you feel the difference in the handle when you have a loose pocket (you should be able to on a 550)

    Are some cases different (range pick ups added to your stash vs old stash). Maybe your getting someone elses crap in your stash.

    I went through a batch of Remmington that were VERY hard to seat. I had to reinforce my previous bench because it was flexing to much as I tried to seat them. Every other primer was fine, that batch of 20K was a biatch. If they don't seat properly they will leak. Seat them HARD with a consistent force, they will not pop. Trust me.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  6. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,662
    898
    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    I agree, loose primer pockets &/or primers slightly undersized. I have found RP primers to be very slightly smaller in dia than other brands. I actually save my RP primers for use in brands of brass that I know have tight primer pockets. So a slightly small primer & a case that has stretched the primer pockets=gas cutting. There are signs you are getting primer flow back into the firing pin hole as well, not always a pressure sign, but in this case, it is confirming the primer leaking. Definitely unsafe using that load in that brass w/ that primer. As Steve requested, please post your entire load. Many shooters think they are fine & then miss some small point like OAL or using plated bullets w/ jacketed data.:dunno: BTW, case gaging doesn't tell you anything but the case is sized & crimped correctly, not if your OAL is right.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  7. rube12345

    rube12345

    25
    0
    Nov 12, 2009
    Hello,

    I measured 10 of the Remington 1 1/2 and found diameters ranging from 0.1730" to 0.1745", average was 0.17395".
    I measured 10 Winchester WSP SPP and found diameters ranging from 0.1735" to 0.1745, average was 0.17385".

    I did not find an official table of SAAMI specs for primer diameter but a google search seemed to point to 0.175" as the diameter of a SPP pocket. Can anyone confirm the spec for the primer diameter?

    I cannot recommend the below load data to anyone as safe. Do not use the data.
    Mixed range pickup brass. Cleaned in corn cob or walnut with polish and small amount of mineral spirits.
    115gr Montana Gold JHP
    6.1gr Unique
    Overall length 1.125"
    Loaded on a Dillon 650 with Lee dies.

    The diameters do not seem off too much between the two brands I measured.
    When sorting brass among getting rid of off brands I toss brass that has flattened primers, is buldged or when the headstamp looks flattened like it was loaded to high pressure. Brass is a mix of once shot factory loads I have shot, range pickup from public ranges which is once shot factory for the most part, my previous reloads and some I have purchased which was advetised as pick up from indoor ranges which do not sell reloads.

    Perhaps I am not seating the primers with enough force? I have not found any primers that were seated high when I inspect the rounds after loading. What makes me wonder about this is the poster above posting about needing to really crush the primers in. My loading bench is very sturdy with hundreds of pounds of ballast. I am not moving it when loading and I feel like I am seating the primers fully, but I am in no way crushing them into the cases. The only time I found I had to really exert a lot of force seating primers was when loading 5.56 with CCI #41 primers.

    Any ideas?

    Thanks,

    rube
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  8. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,933
    166
    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    I remember a occasion in the past that someone using Remmington had a real issue with seating them properly. He thought the same "I am pushing hard enough" I suggested he push harder and his problem went away. He was having high primers. Different issue but you could also be having seating issues. I would suggest loading 100 or so with more force then used in the past. Trust me, if you go slow but firmly on the handle they will not pop. See if that solves the issue. I had issues with Remmington needing more force as well.
     
  9. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,933
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    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    For the record I never said "crush". I don't want you to be unsafe. Just try to seat them a little more to see if that helps.
     
  10. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,933
    166
    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    Your math has to be off. No way for the "range" you describe to create a average that is bigger then the range of your Remington sample. Unless I am missing something obvious.

    Either way, this isn't a math class so.....

    I measured 15 CCI Small Pistol. Nearly all were .174" A small amount were .1735". Hardly worth mentioning for that small a change. Measuring to the .0005" is a little beyond what we can do reliably. The amount of force you use on the wheel can make that much of a change. I would call your Rem .173"
     
  11. rube12345

    rube12345

    25
    0
    Nov 12, 2009
    Hello,

    I hit the wrong key when typing in the data from Excel. The range of the Remington 1 1/2 SPP was 0.1730" to 0.1745", average 0.17395".

    I edited the above post to correct my error.

    Thanks,

    rube
     
  12. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,933
    166
    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    So they are the same as my CCI. I still say your not seating them hard enough with that info. Some are a little on the small side being @ .1730. And that is a pretty broad range you measure. Not very confidence inspiring when mine had a .0005" spread and your had a .0015" spread.
     
  13. fredj338

    fredj338

    21,662
    898
    Dec 22, 2004
    so.cal.
    Sorry, IMO, seating depth isn't the issue. If they weren't seated deep enough, they would likely not fire. It's a primer size/primer pocket size issue. The load is not +P, but is warm. Tight chamber, short throat & MG bullet jacket mat'l. could be combining to pushing pressures higher. FWIW, unless you are measuring w/ a micromemter, you'll likely not see any major dia diff. It won't take much w/ pressure running 32Kpsi to find a small gap.:dunno:
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  14. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,933
    166
    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    You may be right. But it certainly won't hurt to try seating with more force. I never said it's a "seating depth issue". I think it's a possibility they are not being seated hard enough to seal the primer pocket. Especially, if they are small and go in really easy so assume that seating depth is done and that is good enough. I could be wrong, but it certainly won't hurt to seat them with more force and see if that helps. He is kinda stuck with them at this point so it would be nice if something simple fixes the issue.
     
  15. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

    10,016
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    Apr 14, 2009
    Conifer, CO

    ASK XDRoX, ASK XDRoX... he's a math teacher, he should know! Wait a minute, he teaches at a public school... he probably won't know. Nevermind. :whistling:


    Jack
     
  16. dudel

    dudel

    4,983
    527
    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country
    I don't think seating is the issue here (although it is a common problem). i think the OP mentioned there were no high primers. If he was seating high, I'd expect a few FTF and multiple stikes needed for the bang. OP gave a pretty detailed account. He can clarify if he's needing multiple strikes. If multiple strikes are needed, I'll buy into the high primer side.

    Problem with range brass, is sometime you do get other shooters junk. I know the only brass I leave behind, is the stuff I no longer want (or can't recover in front of the lline!)
     
  17. dudel

    dudel

    4,983
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    Dec 10, 2008
    Texas Hill Country
    If the primers are going in real easy, then the pockets are too large for the primer. I just don't see how seating a primer harder in a loose pocket is going to contain a high pressure round. Sometimes, the brass just wears out.

    We work so hard to remove crimps, now you see why it's done. I wonder if it's possible to crimp primer pockets with home gear?
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  18. rube12345

    rube12345

    25
    0
    Nov 12, 2009
    OP here.

    All rounds have fired first strike. I've shot about 2000 rounds with this batch of primers, most of them with this 9mm load.
    Gun is a stock Gen 2 G17, with stock barrel.
    I visually check each loaded round's primer when I case gage them and have not seen any high primers.
    I believe I am seating the primers firmly, but can try to seat them more firmly to see if it helps. I usually hold onto the frame of the press with my left hand after seating the bullet so I can put some pressure on the press handle when seating the primers.

    Thanks for the ideas.

    rube
     
  19. Colorado4Wheel

    Colorado4Wheel

    14,933
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    Nov 2, 2006
    CO
    I agree, it's a long shot in a way. I do seat looser primers all the time and they never leak. I do like the OP and grab the frame with my Left hand as I seat the primer. I seat them firmly. Biggest issue is some of his primers are small. It's very likely that the small primers that line up with a big pocket will leak no matter what he does. Only option in that situation is to use these primers in newer brass and not shoot any of the rounds that feel like they are loose. He could also bring his charge down some to keep the pressure down.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2010
  20. PCJim

    PCJim Senior Member

    2,950
    1
    Aug 4, 2008
    FL
    Rube, I cannot determine from the pic displayed. Are any of the primers sitting high after firing, as though they were trying to back out beyond flush with the case head?