Having problems with handloads

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Having problems with handloads

Postby CJP1 » Sat Jan 06, 2018 2:58 pm

I recently started loading for my RAR 450BM. It was very cold (0-10%) the two times I was at the range. I used a variety of Hornady 452 bullets with Lil-Gun powder and Winchester SR primers. On both trips to the range, I had failed to fire rounds with the bullets lodged in the barrel. The first time I had to quit and came home so that I could remove stuck bullet with brass range rod and rubber mallet. The second time my nephew was there shooting his new ML so I borrowed his ramrod to remove the two stuck bullets. When extracting the brass from my rifle I noticed the powder was clumped together rather the loose like when I loaded it. At first I thought it was too much lube on the cases contaminating the powder or bad primers as I have never used Win. primers before and I didn't really like the way that they were haphazardly packaged. I also had what I call a hang fire. It was snap and then bang. After talking with my buddy and others on the Ruger forum, we have concluded that it was the cold that had adverse effects on the standard small rifle primers. It was suggested thatI use small rifle magnum primers if shooting/hunting in that cold of weather. Also reduce load by 10% and work up load again. What are your thoughts?
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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby Al in Mi » Sat Jan 06, 2018 5:31 pm

I only use CCI 450's, as Remmys 7 1/2 are scarce around here. I have never had a fail to fire at -10*

what was your charge and bullet weight?
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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby Hoot » Sat Jan 06, 2018 10:18 pm

Lighter bullets with light crimps have been known to exhibit what you experienced. It even happened to me a couple of times with the C.O.P. 160gr bullets. Also with soft Berry 230gr TMJ bullets before I tossed the rest of them. Were the failures particular to any one or two bullets in the variety you were shooting? I might add that no way in hell, would I be out shooting in -10 degrees unless I was starving. I wimp out around +40 to 50 degrees for a range day. Hunting is a different story. We don't have protracted deer seasons up here. You go when you have to go. Range days are more subjective and comfort on either end of the temperature spectrum, is a key factor the older I get. The WSR primers should have been up to the task, assuming something isn't wrong with them.

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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby plant_one » Sun Jan 07, 2018 10:16 am

what lube were you using?
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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby Texas Sheepdawg » Sun Jan 07, 2018 12:53 pm

Penetrating lube will seep in to primer pockets and kill any primer. If you’re running a wet BCG, you may want to consider using a primer sealant. I’ve used WSR primers extensively and not had any problems as long as my crimps were good.
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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby Hoot » Sun Jan 07, 2018 3:15 pm

Texas Sheepdawg wrote:Penetrating lube will seep in to primer pockets and kill any primer. If you’re running a wet BCG, you may want to consider using a primer sealant. I’ve used WSR primers extensively and not had any problems as long as my crimps were good.


I doubt he's storing the rounds in his BCG. ;)
I read that H110 has a reputation for squibbing when its below 20F according to some Alaskan forums. While I could not easily find any reference to Lil Gun suffering from the same issue, my gut feeling is it had something to do with the low temperature. Needless to say, the obvious direction of investigation would be to save some of those loads for a warmer day and try them again.

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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby plant_one » Sun Jan 07, 2018 3:57 pm

ive shot lil gun down to the low teens in my blackout. it slows down some, but i've never had a squib. i usually use cci 400's though, and not WSR.

i also normally tumble the lube off my brass b4 i load it. which is why i wondered what he was using


some lubes cause problems, others are safe.

ive also seen powder/primer safe lubes used to so heavily that the powder was all clumped up when i pulled the rounds down for other reasons (not my reloads). i threw out almost 2 lbs of lil gun because it looked like it had chunks of granola in it. not worth my trouble to sort thru it.
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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby CJP1 » Sun Jan 07, 2018 4:10 pm

The problem loads were with Hornady 200gr FTX bullets and 40.5gr-41.5gr of Lil-Gun and Hornady 225gr FTX bullets and 38.5gr-39.5gr of Lil-Gun. As I posted before the primers were Win. SR. I crimped the mouth to .475". The lube is Hornady One-Shot which says it won't contaminate the powder or primers. I store loaded rounds in plastic ammo box in a metal cabinet in warm and dry furnace room away from the furnace :D .
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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby jgilesg » Sun Jan 07, 2018 4:58 pm

I don’t see if the primers failed or were not impacted by the firing pin. I had a similar situation for awhile and found out it was the brass being over excercided by several hot reloadings. I wasn’t checking my reloads with a case gauge after re-loading them and they were not seating all the way into the chamber and the firing pin did not make contact. I had to use a rubber mallet to get the bolt back and a rod to get the round out. I carefully checked all my brass and tossed a bunch out and have not had an issue since.
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Re: Having problems with handloads

Postby CJP1 » Sun Jan 07, 2018 7:26 pm

My brass was only once fired black factory loaded. Primers looked like all the fired factory ones. Good strikes.
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