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I am interested in knowing the cause of this defect.
I inspected the entire lot and some were tight in the case gauge (trust nothing that doesn't fit). I ran them through the sizing die (decapping rod is removed due to priming off press) and they sized appropriately. Still haven't figured out what was the deal with the funky ones but they were deprimed and tossed in the trash.
During the course of cleaning some 9mm fired brass the other day, I noted one case that had split during firing. Which made me ponder; it isn't often that we see a 9mm case that fatigue splits.
I've found many 9mm& 40S&W cases that split and had case head separations although I've never had it happen on my watch.

I use cartridge headspace gauges on all the rifle cases. I like the L.E. Wilson design. I've had Lymans, they are okay. Lately, I bought a 243 gauge made by Hornady, I don't like it as much as the Wilson.

I use them for my own piece of mind, nothing more frustrating than getting to shoot and the ammo is crap.

I don't use cartridge gauges for handgun ammo. I've never found it necessary. For one thing, straight wall cases don't tend to grow much. Revolver brass could grow a lot before they wouldn't work. In my experience it has been a very rare thing for a 9mm, 10mm or .45 ACP case to be so long as to not chamber. The only time I had an issue with a couple of 9mm's was with a Smith & Wesson Model 547 revolver, which was made to very close tolerances. Never in a semi auto pistol.
 
I've found many 9mm& 40S&W cases that split and had case head separations although I've never had it happen on my watch.
They look like nickel plated cases in the pictures. I'm wondering if it's possible for nickel plating to go on too thick. Which would make the case walls more brittle, and subject to cracking. It's an idea.

I don't use cartridge gauges for handgun ammo. I've never found it necessary. For one thing, straight wall cases don't tend to grow much. Revolver brass could grow a lot before they wouldn't work. In my experience it has been a very rare thing for a 9mm, 10mm or .45 ACP case to be so long as to not chamber. The only time I had an issue with a couple of 9mm's was with a Smith & Wesson Model 547 revolver, which was made to very close tolerances. Never in a semi auto pistol.

I use them for my own piece of mind, nothing more frustrating than getting to shoot and the ammo is crap.
Yeah, I had some of the pistol gauges and let them go a long time ago. There is the thing I mentioned re. handgun cases don't grow much if at all from firing to firing. What I should also have mentioned is, the gauges are not just for case length but to see if they actually fit the chamber along the sides. Here I'm referring to case bulge. Which can happen, depending upon the bullet and case components used. But by this time in my reloading evolution, I'm on top of that situation. I know what components I'm using and by now, I just don't get anything that won't work. If I do make a change, I check out prototype loaded rounds in actual chambers. BUT: It never hurts to check things as many times as you're comfortable with.

The trick is to make sure the components you have on hand work from round number one. Meaning, load one up and see how it fits. When I was still shooting .45 ACP, coated bullets came along and I determined to try some of those out. Several brands. One brand, the maker didn't take into account the thickness of the coating over the sized bullet. Seating these in ACP cases resulted in a significantly bulged finished cartridge that wouldn't properly chamber most of the time. That's the kind of thing you want to catch early. In a gauge or a pistol chamber. Not after you've done a run of 100 or 250 or whatever.

One-of-a-kind defects, like a folded case mouth or similar, you usually don't need a gauge to find those.

Lee Precision has a solution for bulged pistol cartridges. It's called the Lee Factory Crimp Die. It crushes any bulged cartridge down to the correct diameter to fit a chamber. Not exactly a "precision" approach, but it works.
 
Lee Precision has a solution for bulged pistol cartridges. It's called the Lee Factory Crimp Die. It crushes any bulged cartridge down to the correct diameter to fit a chamber. Not exactly a "precision" approach, but it works.
I think you mean this? Not a crimp die.

Bulge buster die.

 
I think you mean this? Not a crimp die.

Bulge buster die.
The bulge buster is to correct auto pistol cases that are blown-out around the web from firing in chambers that aren't fully supported, I believe. These bulges are below the reach of a normal sizing die; the Bulge Buster is a push-through die similar to the Lee cast bullet sizing dies.

The Lee factory crimp pistol die function is described as:

"Lee Carbide Factory Crimp Die sizes the cartridge while being crimped so every round will positively chamber freely with factory like dependability. The adjusting screw quickly and easily sets the desired amount of crimp. Trim Length is not critical so this extra operation takes less time than it would if cases were trimmed and chamfered. A firm crimp is essential for dependable and accurate ammunition, as it eliminates the problems of poor ignition of slow burning magnum powders."

You might say, this die gives the finished cartridge a final sizing pass. I've got one for 9mm, only used it a few times when I had cast bullets made by someone else. It does work as described but in my opinion, the process isn't the most desirable way to assemble ammunition.

My reference to "bulge" is the "print" of a seated bullet you can see in the brass of a finished cartridge. Fairly common to 9mm, which is a tapered case. My preferred method to avoid this is to flare the case mouth with a Lyman M die. The Lee pistol factory crimp die smoothes this out by crushing the case and bullet inward enough to eliminate as much bulge as would prevent proper chambering.
 
My reference to "bulge" is the "print" of a seated bullet you can see in the brass of a finished cartridge.
I figure this is just what I have to deal with when loading 9mm. Being as the case is tapered very slightly rather than true straight wall pistol brass like .40 , 45acp etc. I never had that slight bulge affect chambering and function in any of our 9mm guns.

With all the talk of the feed ramps on Glocks causing the "Glock Smile" I'd never run into one in all the 9mm brass I'd sized. That is until a couple months ago when I found two 9mm cases on the ground at the range that the "Smile" was very noticeable.
 
I am interested in knowing the cause of this defect.

During the course of cleaning some 9mm fired brass the other day, I noted one case that had split during firing. Which made me ponder; it isn't often that we see a 9mm case that fatigue splits.


I use cartridge headspace gauges on all the rifle cases. I like the L.E. Wilson design. I've had Lymans, they are okay. Lately, I bought a 243 gauge made by Hornady, I don't like it as much as the Wilson.

I don't use cartridge gauges for handgun ammo. I've never found it necessary. For one thing, straight wall cases don't tend to grow much. Revolver brass could grow a lot before they wouldn't work. In my experience it has been a very rare thing for a 9mm, 10mm or .45 ACP case to be so long as to not chamber. The only time I had an issue with a couple of 9mm's was with a Smith & Wesson Model 547 revolver, which was made to very close tolerances. Never in a semi auto pistol.
I don't use a case gauge on my pistol rounds, but the slight taper on the 9mm can cause problems. I use a bulge-buster for my 10mm and 40sw brass and never had a problem with 45acp. Because of the taper, there's no good or inexpensive way to do a full-length resize on a 9mm. Normally not a problem for my striker-fired pistols or PCCs, but my wife's 9mm 1911 is more sensitive. Maybe 1 in 1k loads will be slightly sticky in our other guns, but 1 in 100 rounds will be problematic in the 1911. If we're shooting a match or she's shooting the 1911, we plunk test all the ammo and save the failed rounds for range days in other guns.

I have 9mm brass that I've been reloading for 20+ years. Case failures are exceedingly rare for me, but I don't push my loads. Some of my friends that are trying to make 9mm major see case splits on the 1st reload. When we're shooting with them I don't bother collecting any brass to reload - just dump it all In the scrap bin.
 
I have 9mm brass that I've been reloading for 20+ years. Case failures are exceedingly rare for me, but I don't push my loads.
Maybe that's why I see them rarely, since I don't load hot either. Over time, moderately loaded 9mm will have primer pockets loosen up before they will split.

With all the talk of the feed ramps on Glocks causing the "Glock Smile" I'd never run into one in all the 9mm brass I'd sized.
For the same reason, I've never found one from my reloads, either. I don't load .40 S&W or 10mm Auto anymore and never had any such bulges with my own loads of those. But I've found others on the ground.

Re. the concept of the Lee Bulge Buster, I'm not sure salvaging cases with that process is a sound practice. It's true that "metal has a memory," but only so far. I've read that once brass gets over-stretched, the molecular structure is so changed that it is significantly weakened. I have a .44 Magnum rifle with an oversized chamber. The webs of cases fired in that rifle get seriously bulged, not so much as hot, unsupported auto pistol cases needing a Bulge Buster. But enough and in such a place that a regular sizing die won't quite reach the entire area affected. I know for a fact that under these conditions, the cases have a shorter life expectancy and I don't try to get the maximum number of firings out of them. Especially so with a magnum cartridge. And I don't load these at the top end, either. I figure three firings and they're done.
 
Last evening I was loading up some Sig 9mm nickel cases that I found on one of brasswhoring excursion. Giddily I was plugging away and then it happens, I attempted to insert a bullet into a sized, flared and charged case. This was proving futile so I removed it and upon further inspection I noticed that the case was split almost down to the case head. :eek::eek::eek:
It wasn't soon after that happened, another bullet would not fit in the flare, it too was cracked but only about a quarter of an inch. Even as slow as I work with this new press I rechecked the flare die to make sure it was set just right and it was so I decided to slow down and finish the rest. No more splits thank goodness.

After completing the loading my next task was to double check the OAL and case gauge check all rounds. The overall length on 98% were acceptable and others I believe in the beginning and the end of the session without a full set on the shell plate were the culprits but they were easy enough to correct.

The case gauge operation was another story, out of the 200 there were 18 cases that did not seat fully and slide out, they stuck. I tested them in the barrel of my XDM and sure enough, they all failed the plunk test.

After pulling the rounds down, I inspected further and there was a deformity, a crease, 1/8 inch up from the head. I made a case head checker from some bailing wire and I can feel something like corrosion while scratching inside where the deformities appear on the outside. I do not feel long creases or splits inside the cases.

This is very puzzling :s0125:
When I get back out in the shop tomorrow I am double checking those loaded cases for signs of a crease or other defects.

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Another thread about Sig brass:
🤔
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Well yesterday I was depriming on my Lee classic cast single stage press. I had deprimed, almost 400 9mm cases and the tube was not filling up so I thought I'd investigate.
Can you spot the blockage? The last time I use this press was for pulling down range found ammunition.

IMG_2066.jpeg
 
Was loading some 223 plinking ammo today and things were going nicely. Should have known better as things were going to easy. Running my AP and out of the blue a case gets stuck, had a few get stuck a little bit but came out easy, so figured no biggie right? Wrong, the base of the case rim brakes free of the holder ripping the rim. Now I have to try to punch it out, so I go to remove the decap pin stem and it gets stuck too. With a "little" persuasion to get it out, so it comes out and to my surprise, it ripped the case neck off with it. So now I have a stuck case in the die with its neck ripped off. At this point I take the stem apart and use it to unstick the case, note: the stem was damaged during removal so it was going to get replaced anyway. In the process of try remove the case as well, some how I managed to also brake one of my twist in lock rings for my die.
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Was loading some 223 plinking ammo today and things were going nicely. Should have known better as things were going to easy. Running my AP and out of the blue a case gets stuck, had a few get stuck a little bit but came out easy, so figured no biggie right? Wrong, the base of the case rim brakes free of the holder ripping the rim. Now I have to try to punch it out, so I go to remove the decap pin stem and it gets stuck too. With a "little" persuasion to get it out, so it comes out and to my surprise, it ripped the case neck off with it. So now I have a stuck case in the die with its neck ripped off. At this point I take the stem apart and use it to unstick the case, note: the stem was damaged during removal so it was going to get replaced anyway. In the process of try remove the case as well, some how I managed to also brake one of my twist in lock rings for my die.
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Damn brother.
 
Damn brother.
Yeah, I was not happy at it, at all. The only plus side was the primer was salvageable so I popped it out using the new pin stem I had. Was trying to make it through 500 rounds but that didn't happen, due to the stuck case and having to clean up powder spills 3 times that didn't feed into the cases properly.
 
Was loading some 223 plinking ammo today and things were going nicely. Should have known better as things were going to easy. Running my AP and out of the blue a case gets stuck, had a few get stuck a little bit but came out easy, so figured no biggie right? Wrong, the base of the case rim brakes free of the holder ripping the rim. Now I have to try to punch it out, so I go to remove the decap pin stem and it gets stuck too. With a "little" persuasion to get it out, so it comes out and to my surprise, it ripped the case neck off with it. So now I have a stuck case in the die with its neck ripped off. At this point I take the stem apart and use it to unstick the case, note: the stem was damaged during removal so it was going to get replaced anyway. In the process of try remove the case as well, some how I managed to also brake one of my twist in lock rings for my die.
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Clearly this is one case that "Get a bigger Hammer" was not the solution! Ish.
 
@Local Loader Would an RCBS stuck case tool have worked to extract the case from the die?


I hate using it, but it works. Getting a case stuck SUCKS!!!
I wonder if RCBS, being the great company there are, have a special program the makes sure these kits get shipped out as fast as possible? Currently at this time Amazon can get one to me the 28th-1/3. Makes one wonder if they should have one on hand?
 
@Local Loader Would an RCBS stuck case tool have worked to extract the case from the die?


I hate using it, but it works. Getting a case stuck SUCKS!!!
Unfortunately it wouldn't have helped, the case was pre-primed. All that was suppose to happen was a light sizing and neck widening, I had even used lube.
 
I wonder if RCBS, being the great company there are, have a special program the makes sure these kits get shipped out as fast as possible? Currently at this time Amazon can get one to me the 28th-1/3. Makes one wonder if they should have one on hand?
I may or may not have been waiting in the parking lot for sportsman's warehouse to open one Sunday morning after sticking a case reloading on a Saturday night. If I had one on hand it probably would have not gotten the case stuck.
 
I may or may not have been waiting in the parking lot for sportsman's warehouse to open one Sunday morning after sticking a case reloading on a Saturday night. If I had one on hand it probably would have not gotten the case stuck.
I'll admit to sticking a case 10 minutes before Fisherman's closed, living 10 minutes away and making it to the store in less than 8 minutes.:rolleyes:

Fortunately they had one in stock.
 
I wonder if RCBS, being the great company there are, have a special program the makes sure these kits get shipped out as fast as possible? Currently at this time Amazon can get one to me the 28th-1/3. Makes one wonder if they should have one on hand?
IMHO, it's best to have one on hand before you need it Because you know at one time in your life you're going to need it. ;)
 

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