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Compressed Loads Are A Pain!


Sarge

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I am getting some pretty good oal fluctuation out of my 9 major loads using 3N37 and MG 121's. It is taking 8.2 plus to get where I want to be and the case is just a tad full!roflol.gif

When shooting for an oal of 1.170 I have to initially adjust the die on an empty case to 1.15. Then I get loads between 1.164 and 1.171. My guess is that some of the powder charges compress better than others which causes this.

When I load minor rounds or non compressed major loads my oal stays dead on .

What if anything can be done to stabilize the oal in this situation?

Thanks

Kevin

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Good evening Kevin.

I had similar problems when I first started loading for my 9 Major gun.

To make major (actually 170.5 PF) it takes me a full case of N-350. I like to load long (1.195") so its not a problem. I had to take out the spacers in my STI magazines to fit. In my SVI mags, I never installed spacers and all works well.

If you decide to load out this far, make sure your barrel is throated out far enough to take these bullets. Well over 10K rounds with no problems.

Bill

(edited to add: Using MG 124 gr JHP's Anything lighter may not be long enough to allow the crimp to hold the bullet in place.)

Edited by Flatland Shooter
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Seems like you have three options (same as all of us):

1. switch to 124 gr bullets

2. load a little longer (1.18"?)

3. switch powders.

I switched to 124's a year ago, using WAC - no problem

with compressed loads for me - got to be safer / easier.

That was my choice - seems to work pretty well.

Good luck.

Jack

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38 SuperComp.:cheers:

Pat

Uh NO! I am going to start videoing the 38 super guys rooting around for brass! I can't for the life of me see myself doing that.

Come on Pat, you can do better than that!sight.gif

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Seems like you have three options (same as all of us):

1. switch to 124 gr bullets

2. load a little longer (1.18"?)

3. switch powders.

I switched to 124's a year ago, using WAC - no problem

with compressed loads for me - got to be safer / easier.

That was my choice - seems to work pretty well.

Good luck.

Jack

I like Auto Comp myself. 7.4 is an easy fit with the 121's. I just have some 3N37 to get rid of and I just keep trying to use it to no avail.

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Seems like you have three options (same as all of us):

1. switch to 124 gr bullets

2. load a little longer (1.18"?)

3. switch powders.

I switched to 124's a year ago, using WAC - no problem

with compressed loads for me - got to be safer / easier.

That was my choice - seems to work pretty well.

Good luck.

Jack

Switching to 124gn bullets is still going to be a compressed load with 3N37. Kevin has STI mags with spacers-loading that long is not an option. Switching powder is a pretty good option. 3N37 is a great 38S powder, not so great for 9 Major.

There are a few techniques to reduce the variance of OAL, (1) Use an undersize sizing die (it allows the bullet to be gipped tighter (2) a little tighter crimp.

The fact is that most 9 Major loads are compressed. Some powders will compress better than others. I've said this before--Silhouette for 9 Major is an excellent choice. Even loads with 115gn bullets OAL varied only .005.

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Hey Top,

You're getting .007 variance in your loads and are complaining? Wow, that seems to be the norm for me in all my loads. Now it makes me wonder what I'm doing wrong. I've been reloading for 19 years and have always seen OAL variance of +/- .002 or .003

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Another option exists. When black powder shooters run out of case room, they use a long drop tube off their powder measures. The long drop allows the powder to pack more densely and uniformly in the case, without having to resort to compression dies. This may be an option for you, too.

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Hey Top,

You're getting .007 variance in your loads and are complaining? Wow, that seems to be the norm for me in all my loads. Now it makes me wonder what I'm doing wrong. I've been reloading for 19 years and have always seen OAL variance of +/- .002 or .003

Heck Yeah I'm complaining. When I load N320 loads for Production they don't vary at all. Every round is right on using same headstamp. Trying to load 1.17 and getting 1.164-1.171 is more fluctuation than I would like especially when chono time comes.

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Even with my variation, my SDs are low and I have never had a problem at chrono. I've been at the Area 6 for the past four years straight (been to nine total) and going to Area 8 this year also. Also run several state matches and never have chrono issues. I usually chrono between 171-173 at home and get exactly the same at the chrono stage. I do use a lot of mixed range brass so that I'm sure is a majority of the issue. However, on Area matches, I do use same headstamp brass and still noticed a slight variation.

What's your setup?

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3. switch powders.

I switched to 124's a year ago, using WAC - no problem

with compressed loads for me - got to be safer / easier.

Jack

I like Auto Comp myself. 7.4 is an easy fit with the 121's. I just have some 3N37 to get rid of and I just keep trying to use it to no avail.

Kevin, when I'm trying to "get rid of" some powder - I use it

for practice rounds = use the WAC for major matches (remember to

practice with some of the match rounds before the match). I don't

notice that big a difference between practice & match loads when

I'm shooting rapidly:)

I shoot 10,000 rounds a year in practice, and only 2,000 rounds

a year in major competitions - that way I can get rid of any

odd powders, primers or bullets that I don't want to use in

major matches - get to do some "experimentation" also.

Good luck,

Jack

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Sarge,

Buffalo Arms has compression dies that we use for loading black powder cartridge. You could alwayse try that :sight: I'm just filling the case to within an 1/8 of an inch of the top and jam a custom cast bullet on top. :devil:

By the way, This load is about 21 grains of FFFg in a 38 Special case.

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Hello: You must have a slow barrel? I shot some new Auto Comp loads today in my Open 9mm. The load is 7.4 grains of Auto Comp with 115 grain Montana Gold JHP's. OAL is 1.170". I think it will take about 8.2 grains of 3N37 with the 115's. Thanks, Eric

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38 SuperComp.:cheers:

Pat

Uh NO! I am going to start videoing the 38 super guys rooting around for brass! I can't for the life of me see myself doing that.

Come on Pat, you can do better than that!sight.gif

Out here in Albuquerque I would wager that I get 99% of my brass back at each match, thus 38 SuperComp.

Pat

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Hello: You must have a slow barrel? I shot some new Auto Comp loads today in my Open 9mm. The load is 7.4 grains of Auto Comp with 115 grain Montana Gold JHP's. OAL is 1.170". I think it will take about 8.2 grains of 3N37 with the 115's. Thanks, Eric

My other thread on this pretty much establishes that my barrel is slow. I am running , or trying to run, 8.3 3N37 with 121's and just making 169-170.

7.4 WAC with the 121's is giving me 172.

oal is 1.165.

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Hello: Well, you could buy some 124's or 125's. The Zero brand bullets tend to run faster than the Montana Golds do. Both are great bullets. OR you could use the 3N37 for practice as long as you don't shoot alot of rounds and let the barrel cool down. Lastly you could also use the powder for 9mm minor loads in your Production pistol. What make of barrel is it? Thanks, Eric

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I don't know if this will help but since you are shooting a Briley barrel, I would call Claudio at Briley and pick his brain on it. He is a long time shooter and pretty knowledgable in stuff like this. Just a thought.

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