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Brian Enos's Forums... Maku mozo!


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    Western Michigan
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    Garrett Jackson

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  1. I've been loading 9mm on my XL650 for a dozen or more years now. I've got the Dillon sizing die in station 1. Lately, it has been having a difficult time pushing primers all of the way out of the case. They hang on, and then of course the new primer pushes the old one back into place. The issue does not seem to be related to any one headstamp. The die has not backed out, and the decapping pin appears to be undamaged. So after tens of thousands of rounds, what has changed? In the 100 rounds I just loaded, I had 7 primers hang up. I finally got smart and put a universal decapping die in the Rock Chucker, so I can address these as they come up. Or maybe I should be really smart and just use a different die. I'm sure I've got another one around here somewhere. But it's bugging me. Any idea on why it would start not fully decapping like this?
  2. There are a few .45 options out there. Not a whole lot, though.
  3. I had to pull out the notes from way back. In the late ‘90s I was loading a 200 gr. Montana Gold bullet to 1.235” over 5.3 gr. of N320 for a 182 PF. (This was back when Major PF was still 175). My work-up notes indicate I was getting a 172 PF with 4.7 gr. N230.
  4. Try this: use .357 Mag data, loading to the correct magnum OAL. You have the same internal capacity, which gives you the same pressure, but with the benefit of ejecting shorter cases. This works as long as you’re not shooting a really light bullet that’s not long enough for the shorter case. You may need to use a taper crimp die. Or some bullets have a second crimp groove in the appropriate location, such as the XTP .357/180 or .44/300.
  5. I have been using 231 for a lot of years. You sometimes get a bit of soot on the end of the slide with low pressured rounds like .45 ACP, but I haven't noticed it so much with 9mm or other higher pressure cartridges. Or maybe I just haven't looked. But that's literally just light "soot" that wipes right off. As far as smoke, not so much. Any real smoking I've noticed comes from the bullet. Lubed lead will obviously smoke a fair amount. And despite what some will say, I tend to get a fair amount of smoke from poly coated bullets as well. They may smoke a bit less than plain lead, but it's still noticeably more smoke than you get from jacketed or copper plated bullets.
  6. Interesting findings today. I went through all of my various bullets and loaded up a bunch of each and shot for groups using my Ruger PCC. I was shooting from the bench at a bullseye target on 8-1/2 x 11 paper placed at 50 yards. All groups were of 10 shots each. As long as I was going to the trouble, I shot them over the chronograph while I was at it. The Ruger is pretty new to me, and I didn't have any velocity data from this barrel. All were loaded in mixed range brass. I did not mess with my seating die, so OAL length varies a bit depending on bullet profile, with all between 1.070" and 1.125". All fed and functioned just fine using a Glock 26 magazine. Bullets include: 115 Rainier plated RN 115 ACME coated RN 124 ACME coated RN 124 Berrys plated RN 124 Zero JHP 147 Zero JHP 147 Berrys plated RN 147 Xtreme plated RN 147 FMJ (pull downs) I loaded them with an appropriate charge of Win 231, with the exception of the 147 gr. Berrys and 124 ACME, which I had loaded previously using WSF. The worst performing load was with the 147 gr. pulled bullets. Only 3 of 10 bullets hit the paper. These were pretty inexpensive, and I bought them to blast through the machine guns. Probably won't use them for USPSA. Next worst was the 115 ACME, with 8 of 10 on paper giving an 8" group, plus whatever the two misses would have added up to. Best groups were from the 124 ACME (2.3"), 115 Rainier (2.8"), and 147 Zero (2.9"). The 124 Zero also performed very well. Overall group was 4.3", but with one flier. Removing the flier gave a 9-shot group of 2.3". The other bullets produced groups between 4.5" and 6.25". So the gun did not seem to have a strong preference for any given bullet weight. I suspect it was more a matter of quality of construction. I was a little surprised that the best and second wrost groups were bullets from the same company (ACME). It may be those bullets prefer WSF to 231. I had stopped buying Xtreme bullets a few years ago when they gave me some silencer baffle strikes. I understand about not over-crimping plated bullets, and my dies are set the same for those as how I have them for Berrys and Rainier, which have never given me any issues. The Xtremes performed in the middle of the pack with a 4.75" group. I've only got a few hundred Xtremes left, which I'm loading up to get rid of eventually. Same with polymer coated bullets. I've had enough issues with both style that I'm going to finish these and be done with them. It will be jacketed and select brands of plated going forward, based on my past experiences. Just not worth it to me messing with the others.
  7. And how did the bore look? Everyone claims the poly coated bullets don't lead the bore, but my experience through many barrels has been different. I thought maybe it was because I was using a surplus SMG barrel that could have been a bit rough. But it's done this on commercial barrels as well. So I took a new, unfired Ruger PC Carbine and cleaned the barrel. Then I borescopes the new barrel. Afterward, I shot 300+ rounds of Berry's plated bullets and re-scoped. Then I cleaned it and shot 245 rounds of coated bullets. Results are shown below. Then I scrubbed for around 45 minutes using a bronze brush as well as copper mesh wrapped around a cleaning jag. There are still some chunks that refuse to dislodge. And if anyone is really interested, video of all the borescoping can be seen here: These were commercial bullets coated with Hi Tec poly coating, sized to .356". They were not over-crimped. Crimp is set to rust take out the bell in the case mouth, as seen below on the pulled bullets.
  8. I just picked up a Ruger carbine. I see there are a few aftermarket accessories out there for it. I'm wondering how much of it is actually needed for USPSA. Comp effectiveness has been debated here already. I plan to play with a few that I already have vs. light loads. There are magwells and big mag release buttons. But reloads are pretty infrequent in PCC. I plan to do some reload drills and try to get a feel for how much I really think one would help. So aside from a trigger job, is there much more that one would need to add for one of these guns?
  9. Well, sort of. There are drum mags designed to work with a Glock. So these should function in an AR designed for Glock mags. However, being designed for a Glock handgun means the feed tower is long enough to fit in a Glock grip. This is going to be a bit longer than an AR15 magwell. So you get a drum that hangs down much farther than is necessary for the carbine. You don't get the optimal fit, such as the standard Colt-pattern Beta Mag in an AR15/9. I am not aware of a drum with a Glock-style feed tower that is sized optimally for an AR15/9. But what is out there should feed and function.
  10. Like most things, they have their place. However, in a sport like USPSA where your largest stage should be 32 rounds, there may be limited utility vs. a big stick. Drums are heavy and sometimes a bit clunky. But depending on the design, they can be significantly shorter than a stick mag of similar or smaller capacity. This could be a benefit if shooting through some really low ports. On on the other hand, some subgun matches have stages that require 150 or 200 rounds to complete. Drums really come in handy there.
  11. Interesting. I built a few mag holders for grease gun and Reising mags around 15 years ago. They're ugly as sin, but they work. Now that I can buy BladeTech Tec Locks, it's even better. I built some Desert Eagle mag holders not long ago, because I couldn't find anything I liked. I may may have to try some new GG mag holders and see how they work out.
  12. I was running around a 250 PF. Can't really download and keep the gun running. And yes, it had no problem taking down steel, even with low hits.
  13. So the other day just for fun I ran a Desert Eagle L5 in Open Division at the local club match. This is the aluminum frame "lightweight" version of the Desert Eagle. Among other things, it has a comped barrel and the factory mags hold 10 rounds reloadable, even though they are only marked as holding 9 rounds. Besides being oversized and obnoxious, I thought it might be a viable option if I ever have the opportunity to shoot in a mag restricted state. I think I would shoot an un-comped gun in Limited if the rules still allowed .357 mag for Major in that division. I don't recall which eddition of the rulebook last had that exemption, but I don't see it in there now. The things working against the gun are the excessively powerful cartridge (I was running around 250 PF. It doesn't like it if you download any), a grip the size of a 2x4, and the safety that requires a double-jointed thumb to disengage. Once you get past that, you find there are no appropriate holsters that will work with an optic mounted on the barrel, and no good mag holders. I was able to make an appropriate shim for a Hogue Powerspeed holster. Kydex mag holders can be built at home, where I discovered the wife doesn't care for the smell of cooking kydex coming from the kitchen stove. They work pretty well, though. Once you get past all of that, you find the dot doesn't track all that well. It's okay, but nothing like running a tuned STI with a CMore. Oh yeah, and those not-double-jointed thumbs need to be a couple inches longer to reach the mag release. The gun runs great, except when it doesn't. In my case, that was 5 of the 7 stages where it didn't play nice. It looks like my barrel is scraping bullet jacket at the gas port. I was pulling the barrel between stages and cleaning out the little copper disks. I believe that was leading to most of my malfunctions. The two good runs are on the video. Nobody likes watching a bunch of surprise malfunction drills. But in spite of all of that, it was a lot of fun. Everyone on the squad got a kick out of watching it. It's fun, but I think I'll go back to a more traditional gun next time.
  14. The Hogue is pretty customizable. It has a trigger guard lock, so the gun won't come out when you're moving. You can disable it at the "make ready"command, or it's pretty easy to disable as you draw. It comes with a bunch of different shims so you can modify it to fit various size guns. And if that doesn't work, you just build your own shims out of wood or plastic. I just shot a match yesterday using one I had set up for a Desert Eagle. Just because I can.
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