Friday, May 11, 2007

Pistol Match Tomorrow

I'll be running a modified military format pistol match tomorrow morning at our range. This will be the first time I've tried to run one instead of merely competing, so it should prove interesting. Over the years I've learned that whenever I do something new, I'll screw something up somehow. I'm curious to see what I'll have forgotten tomorrow....if anybody shows up. I'd be happy with five to ten people. A good manageable number for getting started with.

One thing I learned from a long time ago: check the dimensions on my hand loads. Many years ago when I first started at a local IPSC match, I came out with a fresh load of .45 ACP I'd assembled the day before. I'd shot a couple matches before with no problems with my handloads, so I didn't expect any this time. My turn came, I stepped into the starting box, loaded the pistol on command.....and the slide stopped just shy of completely chambering. took what seemed like minutes to clear that one round, although it was less. It was hung up in there pretty tight, and did take a lot of effort, but cleared it was. Start again, and....same exact result with the next round. At this point I'm just embarrassed, clear the gun, and step back to the prep area to find out what's going on. After clearing my magazines, and looking at my extra rounds in their boxes, I found I'd assembled a couple hundred rounds that were consistently over crimped just enough to prevent chambering.

Ordered two new tools the next day: a kinetic bullet puller and a .45 ACP cartridge gauge to test fit assembled rounds.

Tonight that gauge probably prevented five jams while I ran all my competition cartridges through it. One bad case mouth and four cartridge heads bulged out of spec. At least I won't have to blame cases for any failures tomorrow.


BobG said...

Never had that problem with 45 reloads; you aren't using a roll crimp on them are you?

MauserMedic said...


It's possible. That was back in the mid-nineties when I first started reloading and the local IPSC club. All my reloading knowledge came from reading a load manual and trail and error. Didn't have internet back then, didn't have anyone to show me how. I learned a lot of things the hard way. I've never had that problem since, but all the dies I have now are taper crimp, and I've learned that lot ofs rounds with lots of rejects aren't as satisfying as half as many with hardly any rejects in the same amount of time.

MauserMedic said...

That should be "trial". Damn fingers......