Case Bulges When Reloading 9mm - Help

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by wmabesore, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. wmabesore

    wmabesore New Member

    Nov 24, 2009
    I reloaded some 9 mm Lugar for the first time today using a Lee four die set. I have reloaded a lot of straight sided calibers, but this is the first time I have attempted to reload a conical case like the 9 mm. Somehow during the process, the cases have bulged out at the bottoms such that the rounds will not fully seat in the chamber. The cases spec out in all
    other respects except for the slight bulge at the bottom.

    1. How do I prevent this from happening in the future??

    2. Is there any way to rework the bad cases (200 rounds) to repress the buldges??

    Thanks for any input and help.

  2. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2009
    SW Fort Worth
    What press are you using? Take a good fired case and watch each stage of the reloading process; when you see it bulge and probably feel excess resistance on the press handle then that is the die that is out of whack. measure with calipers after each step if necessary.

    I think you're going to have to scrap the bulged ones; very difficult to get the brass going back the other direction. :(

  3. Oneida Steve

    Oneida Steve Well-Known Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    Upstate NY
    Check your bullets. They might be oversized. Even .001 of an inch (.356 instead of .355) can cause problems.

    +1 to scraping the bulged brass.
  4. res45

    res45 Member

    Sep 21, 2007
    I use the Lee 9mm 3 die set I do my seat and crimp in one step,just trying to think of what might be causing your problem.

    Was the brass from your pistol and what type of firearm is it.

    When resizing does the shell holder touch the base of the die.

    Is the case mouth belled enough so the bullet can start easy.

    What type of bullet are you using and what is it's diameter.

    Are you using the seater die for seating the bullet only and then applying the factory crimp with the forth die,also did you back the seater die off a turn so your not getting any crimp on the case.

    Pics would help if possible to see exactly what your talking about.
  5. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2007
    Athens, Georgia
    Sounds like you need to bell mouth the case a little more.
  6. Insulation Tim

    Insulation Tim Well-Known Member

    Oct 29, 2008
    I purchase my lead bullets from HERE. Generally, Matt Dardas offers 3 diameters for his bullets. Measure with calipers the bullets you are now using and try one size smaller.

    He makes a great product.
  7. wmabesore

    wmabesore New Member

    Nov 24, 2009
    First Post after Your Inputs

    After reading your inputs, the first thing I did was get up close and personal with my extracting hammer. I used the micrometer to check the bullets, and they are OK. I popped the unused primers out and salvaged them along with the clean powder. The bulging cases went into the scrap bucket.

    I will have the barrel out of one of my 9 mm guns on hand as I put five or ten rounds through the reloading process and measure (digital micrometer) and test the rounds in the barrel chamber at each step along the way. This should at least ID the spot in the process where things are going wrong and give me a line on what needs to be done to correct it.

    Thanks for the help and I will post the results of the above described efforts.

  8. Oneida Steve

    Oneida Steve Well-Known Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    Upstate NY
    That's good news that the bullets are OK, since they are the most expensive part of a 9mm round nowadays.

    For a new reloader you are learning fast. :) We oldtimers always disassemble the bad rounds and save the components.
  9. TheGunClinger

    TheGunClinger Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    I never thought about saving primers. How do you safely remove them from the casing?
  10. Claude Clay

    Claude Clay New Member

    May 26, 2009
    Central CT
    seating a bullet can bulge the base of a case if it spaces on its mouth in the die and the die is a adjusted too low--
    back off on the die body and readjust the seating stem.
    same thing when the crimp is applied.
    if needed, back out the body of the die 1/8 turn till hppeness is achieved or crimp is lost. <---go back & find it.
  11. wmabesore

    wmabesore New Member

    Nov 24, 2009
    Reply to Claude

    I am in St. Louis at my son's house for Thanksgiving. But, Claude's post may be the answer. I was setting the seating die to touch the shell holder when the ram stroke was at the top. I will check the instructions, etc., and try backing off the die until I can use the seating adjustment only to achieve the desired over all length without crushing the case.

    Happy Holiday to you all.
  12. wmabesore

    wmabesore New Member

    Nov 24, 2009
    I just use a regular decapping die and stroke gently to pop out the unused primer. I have an end cap on my primer tube, so I just pour them into a container when the tube gets full or I am done taking out unused primers. Of course before this, I have used the extraction hammer to pop out the bullet and powder. I dump the bullets and powder into a small plastic container for later separation.
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