Another chapter in this saga, went to gun range today.
.I had a hunch concerning the reloaded HORNADY brass that came apart in the posts above.
.After inspecting a few AFTER I shot today....guess what I found!!!!!!!
WARNING !!! RELOADING THE BRASS FROM STORE-BOUGHT HORNADY LE 30-30 AMMO CAN BE HAZARDOUS TO YOUR GUN!!!
These cases were only on their 5th reload at most. In the stuck one, the brass looks very thin.
The Remington brass I bought at the same time looks fine.
Even as meticulous as I tend to be about case inspection, once in awhile something gets through, and that's what happened to me Monday. I was firing some loads in my 257 Roberts, using reformed 7X57 brass that had seen a dozen firings or so. I tumbled them and inspected them before loading, but on the third shot off the bench, I got slapped in the face by hot gas and powder granules, and immediately knew a case had let go. There was no damage to me or the gun (ALWAYS wear those shooting glasses!) and the shot went where the others had, but I think I'll retire those cases, or at least give them all a good going-over. It might have been one bad case, but I may just pitch the whole lot into the recycle bin. I've certainly gotten my money's worth out of them!
I find the angle of the separation rather interesting.......most cracks tend to be pretty straight.
That looks like a pin hole that got "torched" and grew along path of least resistance. Dad's Remington 722 let go with a light charge of the wrong powder to be using for reduced loads. Blew the side of the bolt at the head of the case, destroying the bolt - however, NO gases or anything else came back in his face. Something in the Remington design vs the Ruger design?
The second picture.
I don't recall seeing one like that.......
But I know I've had a couple in my life.
Both times the gun shot fine, but half the case ejected, and the other half stuck in there...causing a failure to chamber on the next round. Not hard to get out the "half-case"...but it's kind of hard to do if you are not "plannning" on needing to do it.
So far, I shoot reloads mostly in my Ruger P90, so I'm not exactly in the same ballpark as the 1911s..
I shoot very few reloads in my 1911s, because I know in the end, the P90 is a tank compared to most 1911s.
[/ quote] Okay, my feet hurt from standing on this soapbox...........But once in awhile I get a wake-up call like this jarful of ammo, and it scares the holy schnizzle out of me. There are some very scary reloaders out there, and I just pray they're not at the next table when one of their little creations comes apart.
So endeth this sermon. Go ye, in peace and safety. 8)
My apprenticeship in reloading started at about age 5 yrs. I spent hours watching J.W. (Dad) load everything from 222 Remington to 378 Weatherby. He never got tired of explaining or going over the same material time and time again. Everyone knows all the Why questions a kid can ask. It’s a wonder he never got tired of it, but he never did.
My final exam came when he caught me shooting his 22-250 when he came home early one Saturday. I was 14 years old at the time. He wanted to know where the shells came from that I was shooting. When I explained that I had reloaded them he was furious. He said come with me boy and down stairs we went. He set me down at the reloading bench, with a brand new box of 308 Winchester cases and said “reload these.”
I went through all the steps: checking length, trimming, neck reaming, resizing, priming, weighing every powder charge, seating the bullets, checking the seating depth, wiping them off and putting them back in the box. I finished up by writing the load on the box. The one thing I remember is that I double and triple checked every step along the way. Dad was insistent about that with himself and anybody he was around about anything to do with shooting.
Dad looked at me and said “Are you finished?” I said “No, I have to dump the powder back in the can.” Which I did at that time. Then he said “I guess you are pretty proud of your self aren’t you?” I never said a word. His next question was “Where did you learn to reload like that?” I told him that “I learned it from you.” He then informed me I would have to buy my own reloading supplies. Then he told me that he could not figure out where his reloading components were going, but now he knew. He also said “I did a pretty good job of loading those cartridges. This meant two things. I wasn’t getting a whipping and two that I got an A on that report card. I can still remember into my 30’s Dad asking me the same questions every time I reloaded cartridges at the bench and he was around. Some lessons I will never forget. In all honesty my passing his reloading test was harder than getting my Master’s Degree.
GJinNY Your cases sure seem to have a lot of 'chatter' marks on them. What die and lube do you use? I don't reload a lot of the H LE cases, but your cases appear to have the same markings on all, ringing chatter marks down to the same point and then none. That chatter may be pulling the case apart. I do reload a lot of H 308ME and haven't seen that problem, but then it is a thicker case. I've also seen case stretching from lube left on the case or in the chamber.
Words to live by. I too appreciate the lesson since I am working on starting reloading. I think a friend of mine said it best when he said, "when you stop being scared of doing something wrong, your probably not doing too much right." As for those badly reloaded rounds, I am inclined to think that it might have been some people I used to know that tried to reload with the philosophy that "if it doesn't fit, force it. What's the worst that can go wrong, right!?!" Needless to say, its a bad philosophy and should have been left in some comedians sideshow where it belonged in the first place.
Hi PJ, Great write up , thanks for posting,. Every now and then we all need a reminder of what we are doing and what a small distraction or a minor miss can do. These guys were lucky. I have sometimes but very rarely miss puting powder in a case, and I "DO" a manual inspection of every case under a light. Shadows on the inside of the case can look like powder. So even a cursary glance along 50 cases in a block can miss some powder. I have the same as you only had to use a cleaning rod down the barrel to remove the bullet
Again great post.
PJ, THANKS for posting this, I know it was original in 2004 but is still good today. I have reloaded since the mid 70's and I still learn something new about every time I load a lot of ammo. I am using a Lee turret press but like you took the advancing system out of action, use it as a single stage. I am retired and in no hurry to reload ammo so I go slow and carefull, keeps me and my Marlins safe. Thanks again PJ, just keep on keeping on, John.
Listen to papajohn ive experienced a case malfunction first hand the part thats missing from the case is stuck in my left cheek and nose had i not of had safety glasses on i would have lost my eye sight. DO NOT CUT CORNERS WHEN RELOADING!!!
Thanx for your concern. Im always willing to share information if people are willing to learn just i am willing to listen learn. I picked up 45 brass from the local rifle club skipped inspection on brass (first mistake anytime brass is picked up thats not yours it should always be inspected) i then loaded some rounds to test. I noticed that the last one loaded looked odd but it was already loaded so i payed not attention. In the end it cost me. I had to replace a magazine and two grips for my 1911 and still have debre in my face. Hope this helps.