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Changing Rifles is a PITA
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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MacD
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:35 pm    Post subject: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

So I sold my bolt action and picked up a Savage 99f. Went to the range today and the first round jammed tight in the chamber. Has to pound it out with a cleaning rod. Okay try a different case and bullet combo. Chambered fine but wouldn"t extract after firing. Extractor just pulled off of rim and wouldn't budge the case. Anther through the muzzle pound. Getting concerned now. Okay how about the ones I just loaded. New brass and FL sized. No problem, perfect cycling. Then it hit me. All the others were neck sized after shooting in my bolt gun. Doh :-( Home again and I had to pull a couple of hundred rounds. I FL re-sized with the primers left in and the decapping pin removed from the die. Three different bullets were involved. Saved the powder as each box was clearly marked. I made dummy rounds using the resized cases after decapping three live primers and they all loaded slick at 2.800 OAL. Now to load the remaining cases and head back out to the range. BTW a mid-range load of IMR 4320 which filled the case resulted in pretty flattened primers. They were CCI large rifle and the load came from the Hodgdon site. Bullets were 130 grain and seated to bottom of neck. I will check next firing of those cases to see if I get a repeat. Chamber looks good but I don't have gauges so not able to check head space. Fired brass looks okay.

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gelandangan
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

That totally is the fun of it I guess.
Tinkering with your rifle and get things working right.

Good Luck Mac

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Elvis
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 12:17 am    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

oh the joys of those new toys!!!!

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dhc4ever
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 1:56 am    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

Dont you hate that when that happens.

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SingleShotLover
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:11 am    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

Keep at it, it's worth the effort. In the unlikely event that even your full-length sized cases give you sticking problems, you might have to get a "small base" sizing die. Some semi-autos require the base to be sized smaller than conventional dies but I haven't heard of lever guns needing them...but just in case.

Have fun!

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Bushmaster
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 7:38 am    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

Ignore any flattened primers. When the firing pin strikes the primer it shoves the case forward. Ignition pushes the primer out a bit. Powder starts burning and slams the case head back against the bolt face flattening the primer. Very common in revolvers and rifles with a little more head space.

Be only concerned with pierced primers and primers with soot showing up around the edges of the primer and pocket. Definite sign of over pressure or oversized pocket..

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Grumulkin
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 4:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

I have to disagree on some points:

1. While it's true that flattening of primers is normal, there are degrees of flattening. In a specifice firearm you're familiar with reloading for you CAN get a very good idea of the approach of excess pressure by looking at primers shot in strong firearms. Do not try this with semiautos, pumps, most revolvers and leveractions.

2. Though it has happened to me I don't ever want to push a load to the extent of having pierce primers. If you look for others signs of high pressure, the majority of the time you should never have a pierced or blown primer.
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MacD
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

Thanks guys for the input. I tried the sized and reloaded cases today with a mild load of Benchmark and the 130 pills. I also trimmed and neck sized five to see if I could duplicate the previous problems. Four of the neck sized cases stuck as did one of 15 I FL sized. The cases that stuck showed some roughness around the middle so I took another look at the chamber with a bright blue light. Sure enough it is a bit rough. I am taking to the gunsmith tomorrow to get him to check headspace and discuss a chamber polishing job. The stuck cases stretched a few thousands but the others were same length going in as coming out. This is consistent with the cases that stuck yesterday but they were longer still. As an aside I used 3 different primers. Average velocities with 41 grains of Benchmark were:

CCI 200 - 2699 FPS
Rem 71/2 - 2687 FPS
CCI 250 - 2737 fps

One other useful lesson learned is that you can FL size cases with the decapping pin removed but neck tension will vary from tight to too just enough depending on neck wall thickness.

No flattened primers in this batch and none backed out.

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Aloysius
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:47 am    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

When I have to do such "reresizing" I usually don't remove the decapping pin, I just put it so high that it doesn't touch the bottom of the case anymore. So you don't remove the primer but still size the inside of the neck.
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MacD
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 2:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

Thanks Aloy I hope I never have to do this again but if I do I will just raise the pin as you suggested.

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MacD
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2013 11:02 am    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

Just to update this thread. The chamber is cleaned and lightly polished and a new extractor will be ordered. A little chip is off the corner of the current one. The action was clean and while it has wear no other parts need replacing. The trigger spring is helical not flat as in diagrams and other literature I was able to find. I will give a final update when the new extractor is in and I have checked it out at the range. Even with polishing the chamber is tight and full length sizing is necessary. I will be investigating a small base die.

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MacD
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Changing Rifles is a PITA Reply with quote

Had to take it to the G'smith for honing. He said it was the tightest chamber he has seen except in some custom barrels. It was rough with concentric ridges throughout. Kinda fits my idea that a worn reamer was used. The guy who owned it before me must have been a reloader or very patient. On the bright side he installed a new 1x4x20 Nikon Monarch scope with the German #4 reticule. I got it for an excellent price as it was ordered by a guy who ended up getting something else. I am happy.

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