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Just started with 9mm. Been loading .38 for the past 2 years, no problems there.

With 9, I'm grabbing from a bucket of my own mixed initially once fired brass. With .38, I keep the brass together in boxes of 50 and know how many times reloaded. But with 9, it is mixed brass, will be ejected all over the ground, mixed again, and will have no idea how many times fired.

Some of you guys reload thousands in a single day on your fancy blue presses. How do you inspect that much brass and know it is good?

At my slow pace, with my Lee Classic Turret, I can pick up each and every single empty at my reloading bench as I quick brush the inside and quick wipe the outside, and inspect it while doing that looking for cracks or bulges or wrecked rims. But I won't know if that brass has been reloaded once or 49 times, and they may look the same to me. Maybe it doesn't matter how many times reloaded?

So how do you inspect your 9mm brass?
 

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Short answer quick, most of it gets inspected during the tumbling process for me. I might catch something here or there during loading that will get rejected.

All my 9mm stuff is competition loaded and NOT major loads. Brass has to be either split or really ugly for me not to use it.

Also, I have so many buckets of brass that I don't worry about how many times it's been reloaded. Most of it is once fired.

If you sit down and try and inspect every single piece of brass one at a time you will likely go crazy someday.
 

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If the primer falls out of the pocket; the brass is toast!

Light loads will last longer than medium loads, which last longer than hot loads.

I've had nickle plated 38Spl crack lengthwise before I've had 9mm brass show any problems; but then 38Spl is a roll crimp which works brass harder than a taper crimp (9mm).

Keep your sizer die clean. A dirty die will wipe grit into your brass leaving scratches down the length of the brass. Clean dies size easier as well.

I used to keep track of 9mm brass like you keep track of 38Spl brass; but there didn't seem much point to it. I don't know the age of my brass, although I do wash, inspect and sort by headstamp. Using brass of the same headstamp makes it easier to feel variations in the case and primer seating.
 

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Do they tend to split for you when the bullet is seated, or after firing? And if after firing, does it create any failures to extract?
Typically they split after firing, but I've had them crack after sizing. Never an issue with cycling. It really isn't to much to worry about. More worrisome is work hardened brass that doesn't provide good neck tension (thin setback). Why I have sworn off loading anything but full diameter + bullets.

Primer pockets that are too loose get culled during reloading. I inspect ammo before boxing, gauging and looking for splits. Any split cases I'll set aside to pull down later.
 

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I've only had them split after firing. You can actually tell by the sound they make when they hit the concrete that they've split.
 

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this is the process I started a very long time ago and yes it slooows the process down but is piece of mind for an old CRB.

deprime on a SS press before tumbling, anything that feels unusual is quelled.

tumble in crushed walnut with mineral spirits and Nufinish car wax added, brass is clean inside and out including primer pocket, easy to inspect.

hand prime, this is where inspection takes place as each piece is looked at for fault, making sure flash holes aren't clogged, checking that primers are seated correctly after seating, when I seat a primer in a clean primer pocket, its easy to tell if the primer pockets are oversized.

split brass is happening at firing for the most part, if it was split before reloading, well, it wouldn't have gotten reloaded, this makes it easy to find and toss.

its the oversized primer pockets that concerns me the most, hard to determine visually with out a gage, time consuming if you gage all your brass before seating a primer but pretty easy to determine when seating a primer.

ya, its time consuming but I usually do it sitting in front of the TV (make seeing the flash hole are clear easy when held up to the TV) away from the reloading bench.

and when I get to the press, priming is done so every step done on the press (LCT) is able to be observed without removing the piece of brass I'm reloading at that time until its completely reloaded and ready for boxing, which is sometimes in an ammo box, sometimes in a coffee can.
 

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What type of check can be done for bullet tension? How often is the check usually done?
If you're using a single stage or turret press you'll learn the 'feel'.

Both sets of my Lee 9mm dies "coke bottle" the case. While it may overwork the brass, it also makes setback pretty unlikely.
 

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I lose them before they go bad in general. Maybe 1 out of a thousand I might be loading is bad (probably a lot less than that in actuality), I either catch them as they are getting set in the decap station, or I catch them in final inspection gauging. I don't "inspect" 9mm cases, per se.
 

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What type of check can be done for bullet tension? How often is the check usually done?
Take a round, measure the round, using your bathroom scale press the nose of the bullet in the center of the scale until it reads 40 lbs. Measure the round.
 
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From the range most of the time I put the spent brass in a mesh bag. Shake the bag and if you have a split case you can hear it. Or when I have the brass in a Ziplock bag for lubing the case’s when you shake the bag,if there is a split case you can hear it.
But most of the time I find split brass after it has been resized and after the belling at station 3 on my 650. Then if match ammo when I case gauge using a case gauge and not a Glock barrel. I have seen loaded rounds that would not case gauge that you really had to look real close at the round or even using a thumb nail to find the split. That is the extent of my pistol inspection.
 
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Do they tend to split for you when the bullet is seated, or after firing? And if after firing, does it create any failures to extract?
The splits I've have been after firing. When the brass is cleaned, you can clearly see the crack. If you miss it then, you can tell, because it resizes with no effort. If you still miss it, you'll find it when you seat the bullet and it just drops into the case because neck tension is gone!
 

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But most of the time I find split brass after it has been resized and after the belling at station 3 on my 650.
That's also when I find most of my split cases. Since I bell and charge in the same die I check the case for powder charge by looking into the case in the next stage. When I look into the case I also look at the case rim for cracks. That's if I don't already see powder spilling from the case. :)

But I also load my rounds into 50 round ammo boxes before going to the range. Kind of a way for me to keep track of how much I shoot. So, I'll look at them when I do that. I also look at the rounds as I'm loading them into the magazine. If I find a loaded round with a split I pull it and save the powder and bullet.
 

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Do they tend to split for you when the bullet is seated, or after firing? And if after firing, does it create any failures to extract?
I don't do anything at all to sort brass, other than throwing out the split cases I notice. I pick the brass up off the ground, take it home, and throw it in my dirty bucket. When that starts getting full, I start dry tumbling it, 5 gallons at a time.

I put the clean brass into another clean 5g bucket. When that gets full (takes 2 or 3 days) I lay a big bath towel out on the floor and dump the clean brass at one end of it, couple gallons at a time. I lift up the end of the towel, and run the brass back and forth this way a few times. This removes the small amount of remaining media and rattles loose most of the decap pin killing pebbles from inside cases.

That rolling process is the place I catch most splits. They have a pretty unique timbre, and sound similar to a .40 mixed in with the 9's. Fouling also collects on the splits, which makes them much easier to see on clean brass.

The next check is the 10x10 case gauge. A loaded split case has a distinctive springy characteristic in the gauge. So they're easy to catch there, but obviously at that point they need to be pulled, so better to get them on the towel.

I also catch a lot of them at the initial ground pick-up, and just chuck them up on the berm. And of course I let a few smaller ones slip through and shoot them, 'cause I'm a production Glock guy, and that's how I roll. :)
 

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this is the process I started a very long time ago and yes it slooows the process down but is piece of mind for an old CRB.

deprime on a SS press before tumbling, anything that feels unusual is quelled.

tumble in crushed walnut with mineral spirits and Nufinish car wax added, brass is clean inside and out including primer pocket, easy to inspect.

hand prime, this is where inspection takes place as each piece is looked at for fault, making sure flash holes aren't clogged, checking that primers are seated correctly after seating, when I seat a primer in a clean primer pocket, its easy to tell if the primer pockets are oversized.

split brass is happening at firing for the most part, if it was split before reloading, well, it wouldn't have gotten reloaded, this makes it easy to find and toss.

its the oversized primer pockets that concerns me the most, hard to determine visually with out a gage, time consuming if you gage all your brass before seating a primer but pretty easy to determine when seating a primer.

ya, its time consuming but I usually do it sitting in front of the TV (make seeing the flash hole are clear easy when held up to the TV) away from the reloading bench.

and when I get to the press, priming is done so every step done on the press (LCT) is able to be observed without removing the piece of brass I'm reloading at that time until its completely reloaded and ready for boxing, which is sometimes in an ammo box, sometimes in a coffee can.
This is damn near exactly my process too. I use a lee hand press with a decapping die for depriming before cleaning.
 
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