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to shoot or not to shoot...that is the question

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Chris Brines, Nov 12, 2012.

  1. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines

    480
    0
    Feb 11, 2012
    Houston
    Just wondering if anyone can look at the pic below and tell me

    1. Why are some of my loads bulging out like this

    and

    2. Are they unsafe to shoot?

    I am loading up 100 rounds of 9mm with 147 grain GDHP's. I have already tested this exact load, with the charge and OAL you see below, at the range. Shot beautifully. Long story short, I decided it would be much more economical to just buy the gold dots and load them myself, instead of paying $70 for 100 rounds. Still stockpiling ammo, and always will be. So in all honesty, these will likely never be shot. If they ever are, the world's done gone straight to hell.

    But I'd still like to know if this is an unsafe situation. It doesn't look good to me. I have about 15 rounds that came out like this. Kinda frustrating because I don't have a place I can pull bullets in my apartment, and also I can't understand why some of the rounds came out looking like this, but others didn't. I ran them all through the same sizing and expander dies. The diameter of the casing should not be too small for this bullet.

    Advice is appreciated. See pic below:

    [​IMG]
     
  2. KSUGLocker

    KSUGLocker

    141
    0
    Feb 7, 2008
    Lenexa, KS
    Any difference with the headstamp on these cartridges compared to the others that didn't do this. It could be as simple as the bullet was seated at an angle.
     


  3. Kentguy

    Kentguy

    1,804
    128
    Nov 22, 2010
    Kent, OH
    just guessing here but it looks like from the picture below that your case mouth isn't up against the bullet. Appears to be still "belled" open... am I just seeing things?

    Only other thing might be old brass/thin walls? Not likely but I have had this look before on "fired once too many times before brass".

    When in doubt, take them apart, save the bullets and start over with fresh components.

    Good luck
     
  4. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines

    480
    0
    Feb 11, 2012
    Houston
    No I didn't crimp the ones that looked like this. Figured whats the point if they are likely going to be pulled. I've got about 15 rounds total of various headstamps that are bulged like this. Some worse than others. The ones that look really bad (meaning I can see and feel it when running my thumbnail up the side of the casing), are in the "to be pulled" container. There are a few that have a barely noticeable bulge that I went ahead and loaded up in my magazines (my factory gold dots actually have a light bulge, never noticed it till just now. VERY light though).

    Some of the brass I loaded a few times, some of it was given to me by a friend.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  5. Does that bulge go all the way around the circumference of the case? I have had about 2 of these in thousands of rounds and mine look to me like I was determined to seat the bullet at an angle - it's obvious, and the bulge doesn't encircle the entire case. Neither fit in my case gauge or Glock barrel. Did you try to drop them in your barrel? (You'd obviously have to crimp them first.)

    A solution for a quiet bullet puller is a collet type puller.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  6. Wrap a 2X4 or 2X6 in a towel. Rest it on your lap. Whack away with a bullet puller.

    Avoid your private area.

    You will only make a lot of noise if you hit your nuts.

    Good luck.
     
  7. FullClip

    FullClip NRA Benefactor CLM

    :rofl: Best advice I've picked up for a long time in this forum!!:supergrin:
     
  8. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines

    480
    0
    Feb 11, 2012
    Houston
    LMAO....yes, that is good advice. No, the bulge doesn't go all the way around the circumference. I thought it was due to the bullet being seated at an angle as well, the first 50 rounds I loaded had a few that weren't belled (expanded) quite enough to accept the bullet smoothly, but I was able to still push the bullet in. Some of them looked like that, some didn't. Next 50 rounds, I expanded all of the cases more than enough, and still got a few that were bulged. I haven't tried to drop them in my barrel yet. I guess I'll find the worst one, crimp it and see if it'll fit. There are a few that I can see a very light semi ring around the casing, but I am not concerned about them. It's the ones that have a very distinct semi ring, that you'd notice right away. I do check the outer diameter of every round before I give it the "go ahead".
     
  9. gwalchmai

    gwalchmai Lucky Member

    24,129
    708
    Jan 9, 2002
    Outside the perimeter
    BTW, a 4" section of 4x4 or 4x6 makes a great "anvil" for pounding an inertial puller. Go "into the grain".
     
  10. Do you do that with a case gauge or barrel? A caliper won't really hack it.

    You have a high incidence of those rounds. Are your dies aligned by having a round at each station before securing them? (Don't remember what press you have and my experience is limited to the 650.) Does your seat die have a contour that matches the bullet? Dunno.

    I wouldn't expect those to drop into your barrel, let alone a gauge, so firing them is moot.
     
  11. Fear Night

    Fear Night NRA Life Member

    2,865
    2
    Dec 18, 2005
    Sweet Home Alabama
    The bulging to one side is a tell-tale sign that the bullet was seated at an angle. It all depends how straight you sit the bullet on the case right before seating. As long as the diameter at the bulge is within spec, and it fits in your barrel, you can still shoot them no problem.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  12. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines

    480
    0
    Feb 11, 2012
    Houston
    I just meant I visually inspect it. Just to let everyone know I did a thorough check before putting them in my magazines. Because I was expecting someone to ask if I did.

    Yeah I lined up my bullet seating die with a factory round. I've been loading 115 grain FMJ's with no issues whatsoever. These 147 grain gdhp's are very long though. I'll check them with my barrel later on tonight and let everyone know how that turns out.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  13. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    11,682
    1
    Jun 12, 2002
    North Carolina
    Bullets seated at an angle is from the bullet not fitting the seating stem. It is not from failing to line the bullet up properly, although that may aggravate an already bad situation.

    You need to either change bullets, or your seating stem.
     
  14. Fear Night

    Fear Night NRA Life Member

    2,865
    2
    Dec 18, 2005
    Sweet Home Alabama
    That too, but I'd assume he is using a flat stem when seating a hollow point. Though I have seen some Gold Dot specific stems for my die set, so that may be the best option.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  15. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines

    480
    0
    Feb 11, 2012
    Houston
    I'm a reloading newbie all I can tell you is it is a set of Lee carbide dies, the "deluxe" set that came with my LCT. Never really even looked at the stem.
     
  16. dkf

    dkf

    5,449
    138
    Aug 6, 2010
    I had some bullets that wanted to seat crooked like that. I added more flare and machined up some new seating stems. Problem solves. Try more flare first, if that don't solve the issue get some new stems made or try another one.
     
  17. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

    11,682
    1
    Jun 12, 2002
    North Carolina
    The Lee 9mm stem is rounded inside. Mine is anyway though it's probably 15 years old. The ideal stem is one that is custom fitted to the bullet. Lee will do this for you if you send them a few bullets and a few dollars. Usually, this isn't needed as most stems work with most bullets.

    You have a few options. Finish up the bullets you have and go back to one that was working with the stem you have before you had problems. You can have Lee turn you a custom stem if you're going to continue using the current bullets. Or, you can temporarily modify your stem with epoxy. C4W and others have done it and can describe the process. I haven't tried it, but it seems pretty easy from a DIY standpoint.
     
  18. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines

    480
    0
    Feb 11, 2012
    Houston
    Well I ended up crimping and dropping the ones with the semi ring into my barrel. To my surprise they all slid right in and out with no problems. I took the ones that looked "really bad", and cycled them through my gun manually. Chambered and ejected with no issues. Like I said these rounds will never get shot unless the zombie apocolypse really DOES happen.

    I guess now my only concern is if this will affect pressure. I can't see that it would though.
     
  19. You know... if Jack were here, I'm sure he'd have some scathing comments about the wasteful habits of the younger generations....