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Discussion Starter #1
Started back reloading after 20 years and I'm missing something here. My Mini 14 6.8mm shoots fine all day long with factory ammo and factory new brass I reloaded but brass that has been previously shot through the rifle before reloading often doesn't eject or stovepipes (about 1 shot in 3 when using a max load at about 2550 fps; about 2 cases in 3 don't eject when using the powder's recommended minimum load @ about 2410 fps). While I don't tumble the brass it is very clean, I've even wiped the sizing lube off some of the shells an alcahol pad before firing them in case the lube was the problem. The brass is all at or slightly under dimension and trimmed .005 under length. I am using a Lee case trimmer and Vermeer calipers to double check.
Note: The factory empty brass is consistently .012 under length new out of the box and fires fine, no forming, just prime and powder with a 110 grn bullet.
I've given the rifle several good cleanings focusing on the chamber. If I mix factory ammo and my reloads the factory ammo always ejects so I'm confident the problem isn't in the rifle. The chrono readings tell me that the charge isn’t too weak.
Suggestions anyone??? I've loaded several small batches of shells with the same problem.

Remington and CCI primers, between 22 and 24.2 gns IMR4198 with a light crimp. no signs of overpressure and brass looks good after firing,

Spencer
 

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Welcome to the Shooter's Forum.

Have you used any weight bullet other than the 110? One thought comes to mind 4198 is a pretty fast powder, have you tried a slower powder to raise gas port pressure?
 

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Spencer - Welcome to BTB. Hope you will enjoy the many forums here.

It would be appreciated if you will lower case your fonts to match that used on the board. Thanks.
 

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I agree with Monty. If you've full-length sized the cases that were previously shot in the same rifle, sounds like a timing issue with the gas system. It's not liking the powder charge and bullet weight combo. You're using the minimum load and having problems, so I suggest you up the powder charge.

What is the factory load?
 

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It looks to me like H322 is the optimum powder. It has high pressure, is fairly quick burning and a large load density to keep port pressure up.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The Hornady 110 gn BTHP is the same bullet used in the factory shells that shoot fine. I'll order some H322, I was considering trying some anyway but since H322 isn't available at the local gun shops I had used the IMR4198. I'll order some and post the results in a week.

kdub, Sorry about the large font size, That was my 1st post and I thought it was the correct size. live and learn.
thanks for all the help,
Spencer
 

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You may also find that the .007" difference between the brand new brass and once-fired brass is enough to prevent it from being extracted cleanly. That shouldn't be a problem, but may well be, in your gun.
 

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Your velocity is high for a 18" barrel. If you are using that length in a Ruger? Hodgdon data is using a 24" bbl. Try going below the starting charge. IMR 4198 has produced strange result in 223 because of port pressure in some brands of rifles.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yea, I suspected that my chamber may prefer brass shorter than spec, I didn't want to shorten my Lee case trimmer .010 to give me shorter brass but if the H322 powder doesn't fix things I shorten the case trimmer a bit. A few of the shells that stuck fully in the chamber felt tight as I manually extracted them.

Also, I admit to being surprised @ the high bullet speed on the chrono with my shorter barrel even with the 22gn "start" charge. But since I'm not seeing any signs of overpressure on the brass and the factory ammo is also running about 2550 fps (a hair faster than my reloads) I'll just keep a close eye on the pressure. I'm more interested in accuracy than energy at this point anyway.
 

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The next time you're at the range, try keeping the fail to eject brass separate and when you get home, FL size and measure them for length. While most cases lengthen after firing, nothing says they will all lengthen at the same rate. If that fails to turn up the problem, might try making a dummy cartridge or two with that brass and dropping it into your chamber. Does it chamber completely and on cycling the action, will it eject?
 

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When ever doing hand loads I have always had ejection problems with loading them at the low end of the load data on any round. Start off with max load and take a few grains off. If max load is 24.2 make it 24 grns and your problem should go away. If it does not you may have old / bad primers or a problem with the powder.
 

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When ever doing hand loads I have always had ejection problems with loading them at the low end of the load data on any round. Start off with max load and take a few grains off. If max load is 24.2 make it 24 grns and your problem should go away. If it does not you may have old / bad primers or a problem with the powder.
Welcome to Shooters Forum, PO27. I think you'll find this is usually a very friendly forum, but you're not going to like what I'm about to say...

The above advice is AWFUL, dead wrong, and flat-out DANGEROUS. Do not ever, under any circumstances, "start off with max load" and take just 2 tenths of a grain off. What you do, as is stated in every reloading manual ever made, is you work your way UP from a minimum published charge until the function of your firearm and the accuracy of the load is to your liking, without going over the MAX charge.

This problem may well be with primers, powder burn rate, case length, etc...but if the solution is a higher charge weight, you get there by working your way up. Please follow all standard reloading practices and keep it safe! :)
 

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Have seen some automatics that will not eject anything but new unfired brass. Do all the new first fired brass always function fine? If so you may have to sell your once fired brass and use that money to buy up unfired brass. Also have you tried small base dies?
 

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Well, I just can't think of any reasonable explanation other than a messed-up Mini. Doubtless not messed-up enough for Ruger to deem 'repairs' as warranted, though.

I'll take it off your hands, if you'd like. It's really not worth anything at all, but I'll offer you a modest amount, just as a show of good will. ;)
Let me know...
 
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