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About jim6918

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    Johnstown, Colorado
  • Real Name
    Jim Howell

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  1. jim6918

    9MM and COL Variations

    Thanks everybody for the valued opinions. I really had no idea that there would be so many variables to reloading when I started a couple of months ago. My #1 goal is always going to be safety, not only for myself, but also my family who will be using my loads. That's why I don't pull that handle until I am 100% sure of what I am doing. There will be no extremes coming from this house, thats why I am always looking for the middle of the road recipes that will work in my weapons.
  2. jim6918

    9MM and COL Variations

    I gauge and plunk everything I've loaded so far. The plunk test works fine for my G17. I can have it apart blindfolded. Well, not exactly, but you know what I mean. The MPX is a horse of another color, just for a plunk test.
  3. jim6918

    9MM and COL Variations

    I have been getting ready to load my first 9mm's after doing bunches of .380 and .40 S&W. Of course I have been researching heavily different recipes. I will be using 115 gr. FMJ's. contemplating either TG or W231 (which I have lots of already). I see, what seems to me to be, a wider range of COL than the 40's or the 380's. From 1.100 up to 1.165, with an assortment in between. The commercial 9mm I have used most recently, Fiocchi 115 gr., is 1.135. The Fiocchi shoots fine in my Sig MPX and a G17, although the Fiocchi does seem a little long for the magazines. The range I use is about 30 miles away, so I just can't run over with 20 or 30 to test. I am a newby and don't have a chrono, so I would like to stick with good middle of the road recipes. Any thoughts?
  4. I do just this thing. Usually 10 loads for an average. Thanks
  5. The only bench resting I will be doing is when the breakfast burrito I had before heading to the range starts backing up on me. Seriously, I am trying to find a good load for my son's S&W Shield .380 EZ, , so I am currently loading 4 test loads including the max, so I don't want to overclock anything.
  6. Thanks for pointing it out. gr. = gr. = grrrrrrrrrrrrrr
  7. So, I am probably going to be humiliated by the responses, but... I have a Hornady Lock n Load Bench Scale. I posted in the Newby section my questioning whether the powder drop on my 550C was inconsistent, but now I am wondering the consistency of the scale. I already know that electronic scales can be effected by the environment; for Pete;s sake, I can sneeze or fart and the scale will register +/- .1 grain. My scale came with two calibration weights, a 10 gr. and a 50 gr. I follow the directions for calibration and get the scale to pass. My question is Shouldn't the calibration weights actually weigh 10 and 50 gr's respectively? The 10 gr. weighs 154.3 and the 50 weighs 771.6. Even that is off a little. 154.3 gr. times 5 equals 771.5. I was going to buy a set of check weights to verify the scale, but now wonder the worth of that. Yes, I know balance scales work great for many people, but I don't trust myself to use one any better than the electronic scale due to a very slight hand tremor issue. I am considering putting some rubber bumpers on the bottom of the scale to cushion it from bench vibrations.
  8. I did break down and buy the stuff for manual decapping separate from my press.
  9. Cleanliness is next to Godliness, right? To be honest I suppose there is a little personal pride in how nice my brass looks, and I have been told that cleanliness can extend the life of the brass. Actually, I am taking everything to the n'th degree at this time since I am a newby. Powder charge accuracy, Clean brass, Careful, slow loading steps. etc, etc. Probably the same reason I put everything away at night and even vacuum off my bench. I suppose at some point I will learn where I can cut corners, but right now it's all about following the rules.
  10. Since I am a newby, I am pretty anal about accurate powder measurement. I'm in the middle of loading a boat load (500) .40 S&W now using 180 gr. FMJ bullets over 4.5 gr Win 231. 4.5 feels better than 4.1, which is the low end for this combination. I have gotten in the habit of verifying the powder charge pretty often. I start out each session by measuring a several loads, and even go so far as dropping up to 10 loads on the scale for an average. I then check the load about every 20-25 rounds. I usually find myself having to fine tune the powder bar as much as .10+/-. Usually the measurement goes heavier, sometimes up to 4.7, but usually in the 4.6 range. I use blue press on knobs, so it's easy to adjust, but am wondering what would happen if I didn't check so often. Is there a way of tightening or locking down the powder adjustment screw? I thought about the micrometer adjustment adapters but I have 4 quick change kits for different calibers so we are talking a few $$.
  11. jim6918

    M&P .380 Shield EZ - POS or Not?

    Egg on my face. It has to be the reloads aren't hot enough. I shot a box of 50 assorted (JHP, FMJ,etc) factory ammo through it without a glitch. I checked the log book and I didn't go "middle of the road" but rather loaded at the "soft recoil end". I'm gonna bump it up a little and run some tests.
  12. My son bought a S&W M&P Shield .380 EZ last week, primarily for his wife for eventual concealed carry. They took it out yesterday, and ran about 50 .380 reloads of mine through it with multiple jamming issues. Before you question the reloads, I had fired about 50 of the same batch through my 45 year old Walther PP with 100% performance. I used a "middle of the road recipe". Every reload was gauged, and I re mic'd them last night and they are within .001's of factory in all measurements. The problems, IMHO, related to the slide. Stove-piping, failed slide run back after discharge, etc. I was a little suspect of the whole EZ slide idea when he bought it but didn't say anything. I think he thought it would help his diminutive wife. I'm taking it out this morning with a box of factory Federal ammo to see what happens. Anybody here have any experience with the EZ?
  13. jim6918

    Odd Head Stamps

    It is S&B also. Rest of the head stamp says 9mm B MK
  14. jim6918

    Odd Head Stamps

    I was policing my .380 brass the other day at the range, and after getting home sorted and counted my brass, and came up short two .380t. I still thought that was pretty good for an outdoor range. When I really got to inspecting the brass, I noticed the two casings in the photo attached. I did some research and discovered that they are really .380. So, I know that .380 is AKA "9mm kurtz" Is this crap brass that the pros here would just throw away? They came in a bulk purchase of brass and I have already loaded them once and they shot just fine in my 45 year old Walther PP. The good news is that I picked up 100% of my brass.
  15. Thanks. Interesting idea. Since I am using Quick Change kits for each caliber, what's it take to add another tool head with a decapping die? If I hand decapped, I'd still have to buy a hand decapper anyway.