View Full Version : Newbie here...

05-06-2009, 09:05 PM
Hey guys. Just getting re-started. Reloaded several years(15 yrs) ago with my older brother and a family friend. I didn't do any calculating, just handle pulling at that time. I'm familiar with the basics ONLY. Now, getting back into it. Questions:

1) Will be loading primarily .40 S&W, 10mm, and .45 acp. To start, I'd like to use the same powder for all three. Looks like Unique would fill the bill. Comments? (recreational shooting only...probably abt. 5000 round per year)

2) Most formulas listed are for jacketed bullets. How should I adjust powder charge for cast bullet?(casting my own. I have access to plenty of lead and wheel weights)

Will be loading .38/.357 also.(will cover those later). Plenty more questions to follow. All comments welcome.



05-06-2009, 11:03 PM
unique will do for them as will titegroup.
your cast loads will be pretty close to jacketed just start low and work up.
the 38 and 45 will be the easiest to cast and load the lead for.
40's and 10mm's are high pressure rounds the fit and hardness will be critical.

05-06-2009, 11:49 PM
Another vote for Unique. With handguns, cast loads and jacketed loads are pretty much the same, unless you are loading the big boomers or shooting rifle cartridges in a Contender or an Encore.

05-07-2009, 02:22 AM
thank you...

Will harden the .40 cast bullets by quenching, just to be safe...and will likely sit for at least a month prior to loading. I'm still in the "accumulation" stage regarding brass.

Any comments regarding 150 grain round nose, bevel base, in .40? Just ordered molds from Magma Engineering... I hope I didn't jump the gun, so to speak. I'll be shooting in my Glock 10mm. I've read where some have had issues running "lighter" projectiles in their .45 composite weapons...not generating enough pressure to operate the mechanism. Maybe I'm just reading too much...

Please comment...

05-07-2009, 04:27 PM
If you are going to be shooting .40's and 10mm's out of Glocks, than you have a few things you REALLY need to be aware of.

First, how old is the pistol? 1st and 2nd gen Glocks have insufficient case head support and bulge the brass when fired, weakening the cases and rendering them unsafe to reload. Newer ones (with accessory rails under their frames) are somewhat better. Roll a fired case across a table - if it rolls cleanly, you're probably OK.

The next problem is the polygonal rifling in the barrel. Soft and/or undersized cast bullets cause the barrel to lead up quickly, driving pressures through the roof and turning your pistol into shrapnel. Many casters are successful using very hard bullets sized .002" over groove diameter in them, but I do not recommend it, especially for a novice.

Third, water dropping (WD) is fine if you are not going to size your bullets. Working lead alloys in any way (sizing them) returns the alloy to its normal hardness. The driving bands are what needs to be hard and sizing the WD bullets softens them. You need an alloy that is already hard, like linotype, so it will stay that hard when it is sized. Alternately, you can heat treat the bullets after sizing, but that can cause a different set of problems trying to size without lubing (the bullets can distort) or having the lube melt out of the lube grooves during the heat treating process. Push through sizing and tumble lubing can minimize these problems, but not eliminate them, so it is better to avoid the issues completely.

IMO, you are much better off considering an aftermarket barrel for a .40 or 10mm Glock with conventional cut rifling. It will have a properly supported case head, a tighter chamber, very likely be more accurate, and you can shoot a much wider variety of alloys in it without having to go through the hassle of hardening the bullets. I like Glocks a lot and currently have a G21 that I load for and carry. (.45's don't have the leading problems so I can shoot soft cast bullets, and their working pressures are much lower so they don't bulge cases.) I sold a 1st gen G23 because I could not reload the cases - I was about to get a new barrel for it, but this G21 came along for the right price and I sold the G23 to someone who doesn't reload. I also had a G17 I was very happy with that one of my friends fell in love with, so I sold it to him.

Glocks are known for their ability to feed and fire any mil ammo put through them in a variety of very adverse conditions, but they are not known for their fine accuracy. Occasionally you will come upon one that is very accurate, but in general they aren't tack drivers do to the loose tolerances that make them such good military pistols. The three that I have owned would keep all shots on the paper at 50 yards, my minimum standard for a carry pistol, and all would keep everything within 4-5" at 25yds. The G23 would keep everything in 3-4" at 25yds.

You may very well have some functioning problems using light bullets, especially if you are shooting mild loads. You'll just have to try them out and see what happens. .40's and 10mm's are designed to use 180gr and heavier bullets, so you may need to swap recoil spring assemblies if they don't work properly.

It is also important to keep a very firm grip on any Glock to avoid function problems even with their favorite ammos. The more rigidly the frame is held in position during the firing/feeding cycle, the better. "Limp wristing" (holding it too loosely) can cause the pistol to misfeed or "stovepipe" during the ejection phase. Many recoil operated semi auto pistols are the same way.

05-07-2009, 07:51 PM
The pistol (G20C) is abt. 5 yr.s old. I'm told, less than 500 rounds through it...which appears to be true. Just bought it 2 weeks ago. Haven't fired it yet.

Thats dissapointing info regarding the cast bullets. Like I said, I was afraid I may have moved too quickly. Probably better off using purchased bullets for this. However, I will try some of my castings and advise the results. (I assume their are also issues with the Glock .40's ?)

And thanks for the heads up on the case distortion. I'll be sure to check that.

05-07-2009, 09:32 PM
I wouldn't worry too much about the mould right now, the alloy you fill it with and what you size them at are what matters. Changing a spring is no big deal if you have to, but it may eat those 150's without a hiccup. You can't know until you give them a try. Get yourself some lino and go for it.

Sometimes though, a gun won't like a specific mould for who knows what reason (profile, bearing surface, moon in the wrong cycle, not enough virgins sacrificed, whatever). For future reference, I have generally had better luck trying several inexpensive Lee 2cav moulds in different weights and profiles to get an idea what it likes best before sinking serious money into a good mould. When I do, I generally go with Lee 6cav's for handguns, the quality is much higher than their 2cav moulds, and they are very easy to work. I have a dozen or so for my handguns. I cast and shoot well over 10,000 rounds/year, many of them rifle rounds. I own a number of custom 6cav Lee rifle moulds that I got through Group Buys on the Cast Boolits Forum next door. It's amazing how many bullets you can crank out in a session with a 20lb pot and a 6cav mould. I have a bunch of steel Lyman and RCBS 1 and 2cav moulds, too. All my bullets are push-through sized and tumble lubed with Lee Liquid Alox (LLA), plain based and gas checked, pistol and rifle.

Bulges will be really obvious on the fired cases, and yes, it is also a problem with the .40's. This site will explain things, but be aware that while there is a lot of good info there, the guy isn't too fond of Glocks, so he is a tad bit extreme.


05-08-2009, 12:10 AM
Won"t the resizing take care of the bulges?

Lino, huh? Dang it! What am I gona do with that 2,000 lbs of Pb pipe...?

05-08-2009, 02:49 AM
No, resizing won't take care of the bulges, the brass is greatly weakened and no longer safe to load. If you have an older barrel, just replace it with a good aftermarket offering. Looking at the price of factory ammo these days, it will only take a few boxes of your reloads to pay for a new barrel.

Hang onto the lead, smelting it is good practice. Besides, you'll need every bit of it for your .38/.357's and .45's. I use a mix of 1:4 wheelweights(WW) : pure lead for most handgun bullets. Softer is fine for handgun bullets, and the size is much more critical than the alloy. Watch yardsales for old bar solder and cheap pewter mugs and plates - they're great sources of otherwise expensive tin. Try to snag wheel weights while they are still available, just watch out for zinc.

05-08-2009, 04:28 AM
Again, thanks for this info. You've been incredibly helpful...

Rnfiverun: what are your titegroup recipes?

05-08-2009, 07:19 PM
Good news! Shot a box of factory ammo through the Glock at lunch today. The cases are not deformed at all! I must have a 3rd gen piece(it does have the accesory rail)....and...my mold and handle delivered!! Too bad I can't find any Unique...

05-09-2009, 02:43 AM
i don't load for the 40.
but for the 9mm 4.0 grs
and in the acp i use 5 grs
if you have unique
i like 6gr of unique it won't eject cases with 160 gr boolits
but with 200 and 230 6 is fine.