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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Darksider's Den  |  The Dark Arts (Moderator: Lucky Irish Tom)  |  Topic: Primers backing out of .44-40 shells 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: Primers backing out of .44-40 shells  (Read 44756 times)
Delmonico
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« Reply #75 on: August 24, 2009, 09:52:50 pm »

Slim, that makes sense and nice and to the point.  The things that firearms and cartridges can drive us crazy, a tech from Hornaday told me once it drives them even crazier because it has to work right all the time in not just two or three firearms but all of them
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« Reply #76 on: August 24, 2009, 10:48:12 pm »

Slim, this may be a dumb question (but I'm not vain  Wink )  If the .44-40 headspaces on the rim, what effect does the shoulder have on the problem?  I know true bottlenecks headspace on the shoulder, but I thought the problem here could be in back, at the rim? Seems like the deep shoulder would just lead to stretched cases, right?  EDIT--BTW: I just checked several cases. My Wilson case gauge is showing my .44-40 cases almost perfect length after firing.
Well, I happen to be an engineer, but I'm off the clock at the moment & I didn' stay at a Holiday Inn lately.  Grin
I hate to put too much thought after-hours, but on the shoulder set-back, my theory is that  (the overly sized 44-40 cartridge) case moves rearward at a higher-than-design velocity, bounces off of the breech, then reaches highest pressure, causing the cartridge body & neck to expand - gripping the sidewalls. At this time pressure causes movement of the primer to fill the slight, but excess headspace (backout). Kinda thin, I admit, but I'm not trying to blame space Monkeys or the anemic load you're runnin'. I've worked a lot of theories on modern weapon problems and & I'll have to admit I'm lucky enough that testing has proved me correct more often than not.

Optimal sizing for me is just at the point the cartridge will chamber in my tightest chamber. This is on my ASM Frontier Six-Shooter.

BTW, ran 35 rounds through the ol' ASM at Sunday's match. Hardest hitting pistol loads on our posse. Someone said they were knocking the teeth out of the steel cowboy poppers.

Regards,
Slim
Slim,
Not a bad theory but it seems to fly in the face of what JD has told us.  I’m sure you’ve used Wilson gages or the government equivalent thereof.  How would the cartridge fit the gage correctly and show “perfect” length after firing if the dynamics were as you postulate?  If this were a problem then factory formed cases would have the same problem wouldn’t they? 

You really can’t push the shoulder back too far with the dies I have used.  I have RCBS and Redding (Dillon).  You’d bottom out on the bottom of the die before you can go further than a factory formed case.  I load factory cases without forming and just load and crimp.  The shell looks very different after fire forming to my chambers.

JD has used both fully sized cases and most recently only partially sized cases to the point it was hard to chamber the cartridges. As he says below:

…Backed sizing die out a little, so it wasn't full sized. Made a few shells quite hard to load into cylinder. Either cases bulged a bit, or perhaps the used shells were from my '73 levergun with larger chamber? 

Problem was better but not fixed.  Some primers backed out, at most, 0.012, 0.013. Was enough to almost lock 1 of the rodeos. (measured primer back-out by putting case on flat surface and gently pushing feeler gauges under shell rim until one tipped the shell). Other primers weren't as bad.  One rodeo had problems, as stated. The other one ran pretty good. …
Smokeless shells: zero back-out.
Next step: I gotta clean my pistols before I start measuring headspace, etc.  I'm also wondering if the cylinder pin bushing on the rodeo that had the problems is out a little further than the good-running one? Just a hunch.  Gonna measure to see.  I had trouble even putting the cylinder back into the frame after wiping it down.
Tune in later for more developments on this fast-moving story!   Wink

There is one more clue that several have mentioned.   “JD: Smokeless shells: zero back-out.”  People keep telling him to contact USFA and so forth.  If it is a chamber problem he would have it with smokeless as well.  I mean really,  would you argue otherwise?

Slim you and I have a lot of experience with modern weapons, tell me what your FMEA matrix would look like if it kept coming down to one propellant?  That’s what he keeps telling us isn’t it?  Smokeless works fine, BP with his loads don’t.  So what would you look at, the weapon or the cartridge?  It’s not simply the propellant, it’s the cartridge.  The bullet, case, propellant and primer.  Everyone keeps dancing around it but the facts are: Smokeless, Zero Problems; Schutzen FFFg from 1.9 to 2.2 ccs, the primers back out.  So if you were on the clock would you make a presentation and tell everyone to look at the weapon, or the cartridge with the propellant that causes the problem.  (Again we are not dealing with gas operated weapons or anything that requires an impulse to function, we are talking revolvers here.)  So tell me whatt you would tell your team to look at tomorrow morning?

Let’s get smart about it and figure it out…

~Mako
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« Reply #77 on: August 25, 2009, 12:44:38 am »

That's why I suggested that he take not only the guns but a hand full of his loads to a professional.

Well here's a suggestion I haven't heard mentiond here as of yet.  Take a handfull of your loads and both guns to a reputable shop/smith.  Mark the gun that you don't have problem with the higher loads and see what he has ta say.  It may be one of those problems that no amount of innernet bantering is gonna fix.  Someone knowedgable needs ta put their hands on what you have, ammo and hardware.  A decent guy will just tell you what is wrong at no charge an offer a fix if it's the pistol.

That's what I would do at this point.  Heck, there might even be another customer at the store that over hears you an has a few good words, that's happened ta me more than once.
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« Reply #78 on: August 25, 2009, 12:54:07 am »

That's why I suggested that he take not only the guns but a hand full of his loads to a professional.


And why I said to contact the maker.   Wink
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« Reply #79 on: August 25, 2009, 02:01:15 am »

Alright, I'm back in the ring. This could be also caused by a combo of too light a load and varying case rims thicknesses working in unison. Next time ISOLATE the cases that do this and measure the rim thicknesses.

I will also add this, recently I had this same problem on a brand new Colt FSS. The primers were being pulled back out a little upon cocking after a round fired as the FP is a little too long for Wolf primers as they are a little thin. Well, since Wolf is all I could get this Summer I uniformed the primer pockets on my 44-40 pistol brass which eliminated the primers being pulled out a tad by the firing pin as the primers sat a frog hair deeper. Worked great.....................until I used THAT ammo in my other Colt FSS. Many light hits. I had to segregate the brass.
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« Reply #80 on: August 25, 2009, 07:08:07 am »

Whew, ya'll makin' my poor, ignerrant head spin!  Shocked

I'm gonna call USFA and see if I can find someone to talk to, as Del suggested.  I've been avoiding that because I don't want to go through the PITA of boxing, shipping, and especially waiting for the return, if the rodeos need to be sent back.  But, ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

Mako touched on something I mentioned doing a while back--switching powders.  I have some SWISS 3f, and I may try it out.  But I also suspect that if it was a pressure problem, I woulda seen an improvement from 1.9cc's to 2.2cc's (about 5 grain-by-weight difference in load). There wasn't really an improvement.  I've tried different cases, different sizing, different loads, and it ain't workin'. The field's gettin' narrow.

I measured the headspace in my USFA Premium .45 LC.  It was .005.  That's less than half the distance of the rodeos.  Personally, I believe the soft "push" of black powder (vs. the sharp recoil of smokeless. thanks, Del) combined with the extra long distance of the headspace (thanks, John Boy), is the culprit.

Once again, thanks to all of ya'll.  I've learned a lot from this discussion!
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« Reply #81 on: August 25, 2009, 07:12:41 am »

I'm remiss!  I forgot to thank the author with the best suggestion!

Thanks, Driftwood, I would believe that you were the one beacon of light in this cunundrum, with your suggestion about avoiding shiny brass!   Cheesy  But I tried that, already.  If you look at the first picture on about page 5 or so (chronologically, the last one I posted), you'll see that I attempted to use grundgy brass, too.  There were other examples, but vanity and an undue fear of being seen as a "case abuser" caused me to only pick the shiniest, happiest examples for my photographs.   Wink
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« Reply #82 on: August 25, 2009, 12:17:47 pm »

Update for the curious:

I talked to Gary Granger at USFA, and he talked to their engineer. Spec on headspace is about .006.  They're sending me a fed ex label to ship my pistolas in fer a fix.  Here's the pisser, though. They're closed for 2 weeks after this week!  So I haveta wait.
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« Reply #83 on: August 25, 2009, 12:58:06 pm »

I'm sure you'll be happy in the end. 
If ya think about it, back in the old days not many cowboys tinkered on their own guns.  There were experts at hardware stores an plain old gun shops that did most of that tweaking an tuning fer an average cowboy or pistolero.  I think ya made the right call.
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« Reply #84 on: August 25, 2009, 01:14:56 pm »

If'n the tranny went out on a pcik-up under warrenty myself I wouldn't say ah-oh and call AAMCO, think I'd let the folks who made it do the fixin' but that's just me and some folks don't think I have many smarts.

Good call, JD you did all you should have to, nows the time for them to make good. Wink
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« Reply #85 on: August 25, 2009, 01:51:34 pm »

Update for the curious:

I talked to Gary Granger at USFA, and he talked to their engineer. Spec on headspace is about .006.  They're sending me a fed ex label to ship my pistolas in fer a fix.  Here's the pisser, though. They're closed for 2 weeks after this week!  So I haveta wait.
JD,
I hope you find relief, but I predict they will tell you the pistols are to spec.  If they weren't you would have had problems with smokeless loads. 

I'm pretty sure they didn't ask for your handloads because they won't use them at the facility.  Unless the are very different than other firearms companies I have worked with because of liability they will use only the ammunition they use in test firing the pistols at the plant.

Best of luck pard,
Mako
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« Reply #86 on: August 25, 2009, 02:01:30 pm »

And there in lies the rub.  So mebbe while the guns are off getting attention, JD can take some of his handloads to a gunsmith and have him look them over.  It would be better to have the guns as well, but if can get a free fix out of it I guess it's worth a shot.
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« Reply #87 on: August 25, 2009, 02:17:30 pm »

And there in lies the rub.  So mebbe while the guns are off getting attention, JD can take some of his handloads to a gunsmith and have him look them over.  It would be better to have the guns as well, but if can get a free fix out of it I guess it's worth a shot.
Leo,
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« Reply #88 on: August 25, 2009, 03:51:23 pm »

JD,
I hope you find relief, but I predict they will tell you the pistols are to spec.  If they weren't you would have had problems with smokeless loads. 

No, the engineer at USFA already said the guns are out of spec (assuming, of course, that I measured right. And I'd bet the pistols themselves that I did).  So even if the primers aren't a headspace problem, I have twice the amount of headspace the manufacturer tolerates.  So off they go.

But I'll still be trying different batches of powder when I get them back.
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« Reply #89 on: August 25, 2009, 03:58:09 pm »

And there in lies the rub.  So mebbe while the guns are off getting attention, JD can take some of his handloads to a gunsmith and have him look them over.  It would be better to have the guns as well, but if can get a free fix out of it I guess it's worth a shot.

That was my reccomendation.  Go back through though the posts, I said it a couple times.  I can however see the logic in letting USFA get the spacing correct for free.  It may not work and then it's time for a good smith ta look at both the guns and the hand loads.
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« Reply #90 on: August 25, 2009, 09:55:21 pm »

High-speed-photography would give a pretty good idea of what is happening.

Regards,
Slim

P.S. I still suspect the "load" is not the problem.
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« Reply #91 on: September 14, 2009, 04:19:39 am »

Well, it's been about 3 weeks now. Has there been any news.

Regards
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« Reply #92 on: September 15, 2009, 01:01:16 pm »

USFA was supposed to send me a fedex label to ship the guns in a couple of weeks ago. They forgot, and they've been on vacation the last 2 weeks, so there hasn't been any progress. 

If you look in this forum under the chamber pressure thread, there's a good chart someone posted showing the pressure spike in a smokeless round and a bp round of equivalent velocity, etc.  The sharp, fast, and higher pressure peak of the smokeless would explain why my primers stayed in when shooting the heathen stuff, but popped out with the lower pressure bp.

I'll post an update as soon as I get the headspaced guns back.
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« Reply #93 on: September 15, 2009, 06:25:04 pm »

J.D.,
Did you take sufficient measurements that you will be able to report back what they actually have done to your two pistols?

Also, if you get the chance, write them and ask them to send you an explanation of what they did or attempted to do.  Several of us would like to understand what was happening and how they either fixed it, or attempted to fix it.

Regards,
Mako
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« Reply #94 on: September 15, 2009, 06:51:50 pm »

I measured the headspace on both pistols and most of the shell casings (which matched the guns' headspace, naturally, as the primers couldn't be further out than the headspace).  I also compared the measurements to the headspace on my USFA Premium, which had the correct, in-spec spacing, about .006 as I recall, which is 1/2 of what I found on the rodeos. 

I have a lot of confidence in USFA--I've owned many of their their revolvers.  And I'm really eager to get the rodeos fixed and back onto the range--I have a few different recipes of bp .44-40 loads just waitin'....

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« Reply #95 on: September 15, 2009, 07:47:27 pm »

I measured the headspace on both pistols and most of the shell casings (which matched the guns' headspace, naturally, as the primers couldn't be further out than the headspace).  I also compared the measurements to the headspace on my USFA Premium, which had the correct, in-spec spacing, about .006 as I recall, which is 1/2 of what I found on the rodeos...

No offense, but did you mean 0.060"?

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« Reply #96 on: September 16, 2009, 06:57:29 am »

No offense, but did you mean 0.060"?

Oops!  You're right--I let a zero get away from me!  Tongue

EDIT: I shouldn't be postin' before I've had my coffee.  I was right the 1st time--the headspace was .005 or .006, depending on the shell (rim width effecting headspace)
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« Reply #97 on: September 16, 2009, 07:23:38 am »

FCK, I see you had a similar problem this summer:

http://www.cascity.com/forumhall/index.php/topic,26549.0.html

Did you get it worked out?
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« Reply #98 on: September 16, 2009, 10:04:59 am »

Yes, I explained it in this very same thread.  Wink
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« Reply #99 on: September 16, 2009, 10:59:37 am »

I saw that you thought it was soft primers, but I didn't see that you found out fer sure (for instance, by trying different primers).
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