head space, case length, and loading the 45 ACP
Posted 06 August 2012 - 12:12 PM
It was'nt until I went back and re-read my Sierra Manual (and talking to a friend) that I learned something very important about myself and loading pistol cartridges .
Years of loading rifle cartrides made me very complacent. I failed to learn the difference in how rimless, straight-walled cases (RLSWC) head space vs. necked or rimmed cases. RLSWC (e.g. 45 ACP) headspace on the edge of the case mouth. When I understood this I woke up like Rip Van Winkle into a new world. Yikes!
During the first few months of handloading 45 ACP, I never found a case I had to trim. So I quit checking case length and only worried about cartridge overall length. I ignored the lower limit of case lenght because I did'nt understand how the .45 ACP headspaces. This was a big mistake because 45 ACP brass get shorter with each use. This is stated in the Sierra Manual and measurements I have taken over the past few months confirmed the statement.
Now I measure my brass and discard any that are too short, in addition to checking loaded COL. I don't have data to support this, however it seems that the number of malfunctions I now encounter while shooting has decreased. At the very least I am more confident in my handloads.
Posted 06 August 2012 - 08:12 PM
Posted 24 August 2012 - 06:37 PM
Posted 07 October 2012 - 12:52 PM
I did a ton of research when I started reloading and was never told to watch out for case length on my pistol brass. My mentor is a 1911 guru that has been competing for over 30yrs. I'm going to see him next week and ask him this question. Curious about his thoughts on this.
Posted 07 October 2012 - 02:04 PM
- Mitch Gibson likes this
"Fetch me a weapon boy!" - Jake Burki to Mike Chambers
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