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Old 04-17-2012, 09:55 PM   #1
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Default Bullet seating tolerances

I have just started reloading .45auto and have a bit of variation in the seating depth. The spec's call for 1.275 overall length and some are coming up short. I would think that being .005 inch short would not be a real problem, but how short is too short? The reloads are .45 auto, 230gr fmj bullet and 5 gr of Bullseye. It will be used in a 1911 pistol. Would the problems be with gas pressure or unreliable feeding?



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Old 04-17-2012, 10:35 PM   #2
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Measure a factory load, the Remington's measure 1.265 to 1.27. Mine measure 1.268 and shoot great.



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Old 04-17-2012, 11:18 PM   #3
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That sounds good. I sorted mine by length and decided arbitrarily that I could use all of them from 1.270 to 1.277 length. Additionally more were sorted in a group of 1.265 to 1.269 length. The shorter ones will be dealt with later with a bullet puller. Thanks for the input.

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Old 04-18-2012, 12:03 AM   #4
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seating dies generally work off the ogive not the very tip of the bullet. in the case of things like flat nose bullets they work off the tip. but for conical round nose or spitzer type its the ogive. thats why you see a slight variation. when setting a seating die you can pick a bullet with a median length or just pick one and set the die.

some dies come with two seating stems. a flat and round. the round ones use the ogive for seating and flat the nose of the bullet.

the slight variation wont matter unless your being super anal grognardish about it.

if you use a bullet comparator and chamber gage you can seat more accuratly when getting an exact seating depth to match a gun's headspace. you want to be a little off the lands. this is really only important for making super accurate target rifle ammo.

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Old 04-18-2012, 12:33 AM   #5
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Quote:
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grognardish
LMAO! Love it!
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Old 04-18-2012, 12:45 AM   #6
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seating just off the lands or just touching the lands is what you're looking for with rifles. For pistols, you will be limited to the longest length that will fit in your magazine. The 1.275 OAL is for Max length. If you seat to max length, they will probably still fit in the mags for a 1911. If I remember correctly, mine did but a few were very close to hanging up. The problem is trying to unload an unfired round from the chamber. If your bullets are seated to the max oal, they are not coming through the ejection port without a fight. Trust me, it's not something you wanna be fussing with at the range. If you set your seat depth to 1.250, you will find that they will cycle and unload (unfired) smoothly. If you want to go longer for whatever reason, make a few dummy rounds first at the lengths you are aiming for and then test them in the gun at your reloading bench to make sure they cycle. Having a loaded round that doesn't wanna eject at the range when it needs to wouldn't make me feel very warm and fuzzy.

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Old 04-18-2012, 12:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
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LMAO! Love it!
lol you dont know the true meaning till you run into a bench rest shooter that shoots one hole groups at 4 miles heh. those guys know how to build ammo to very exacting standards.

i used to be pretty anal about sorting weighing measuring but it just gets old and takes the fun out for me. but i dont begrudge the folks that enjoy that level of precision. there is enough range space for everyone
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Old 04-18-2012, 12:50 AM   #8
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The .45 ACP is a very forgiving cartridge. A couple of thousandths of an inch do matter a hill of beans. Save the Anal Retentive OCD stuff for precision rifles.

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Old 04-18-2012, 01:47 PM   #9
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Thanks for the advice. I am really new to this , so I will have more than a few questions to ask.

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Old 04-18-2012, 02:43 PM   #10
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The different manufacturers list the cartridge overall length(C.O.A.L.) for the bullets they tested with powder charges. There is often quite a variance with the C.O.A.L. in the different manuals for bullets of the same weight and design type. I have listed some different C.O.A.L. measurements for the .45acp 230-grain RN from a few manuals I have. I use this bullet weight for my .45acp loads and I usually just stick with the C.O.A.L. listed in the manual for the brand of bullet I am using at the time. Good luck with your reloading.

Sierra - 1.270"
Hornady - 1.230"
Speer - 1.260"
Lyman - 1.275"



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