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When I press the precision (brand) bullet into the shell, I see a bulge on the side of the shell. It appears the bullet did not go in straight. I use the lee challenger press, lee dies and the lee chamfer tool. It does not seem to effect the shooting or anything but it drives me crazy trying to figure out why it happens.
 

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If the "bulge" is uniform all around the case, don't worry about it. This happens a lot with handgun cartridges. What's happening is the case is being sized down to the bottom end of the spec and the bullet is sized to the top end of the spec in some equipment. When you seat the bullet, it "bulges" the case out a little but causes no real problems shooting the cartridges. A different sizing die or a different bullet may make this go away or it may not. If the fit in the gun, shoot well, and the bulge is gone after shooting, all is OK. I've seen this more in my 9mm guns than anything else (38Super, 9x21, 9x23, 356tsw). I've never had a single problem due to this.
 

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Going thru the sizing die the cases are squeezed down smaller than the bullet. Seating the bullet expands all cases slightly but are more noticeable on straight walled cases. They are often not expanded the same amount all the way around.
 

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Yep I reload more 9mm than anything else and have come to except a little case bulge and some times more than a little. Carachter that's what it is!
 

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Happens a lot in 9mm, short case and tapered case walls. Don't be tempted to run loaded rounds back through the sizer die with the decapper pin removed. This is dangerous and distorts the bullet shape.
 

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I've dealt with this same issue. When reloading in my eyes you shoot for 100% and don't settle for anything less. I had guys tell me the same thing that is was just acceptable if it chambered. It's all in the die settings so keep playing with them till it goes away. The factory ammo isn't like that for heavens sake why should your be any different? I found I didn't have the sizing die properly set. It's all in die setting. I never knew how to properly set a die until Daryl (crusty old coot) informed me but that was rifle. Pistol die setting I found through several utube videos. I even went to the expense of buying a separate crimp die that made no difference. Would be nice if someone could post some setup instructions that has more knowledge than I do.
 

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I had a similar bulge in my 45s and didn't give it any second thought, even tho I was having problems with many of the shells not locking into battery in my 1911. I wasn't sure what was causing the problem. I was talking with a fellow shooter who asked what the diameter of the slug was. I said that the die "said" .452 and I never questioned that.
I measured the slugs and found they were coming out at .454. I bought a die that gave me a slug that was .452 and many of my problems went away.
The other problem turned out to be small chambers in some of my 1911s and quite a few of my empty range brass would not lock into battery. I solved that problem when I bought a MAGMA CASE MASTER JR and sized the case over its entire length.
Yes, it was an expensive solution but I have absolutely no more problems with any 9mm or 45 ACP case not locking into battery.
 

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I've dealt with this same issue. When reloading in my eyes you shoot for 100% and don't settle for anything less. I had guys tell me the same thing that is was just acceptable if it chambered. It's all in the die settings so keep playing with them till it goes away. The factory ammo isn't like that for heavens sake why should your be any different? I found I didn't have the sizing die properly set. It's all in die setting. I never knew how to properly set a die until Daryl (crusty old coot) informed me but that was rifle. Pistol die setting I found through several utube videos. I even went to the expense of buying a separate crimp die that made no difference. Would be nice if someone could post some setup instructions that has more knowledge than I do.
You aren't reloading off of factory equipment. At the factory, they match the sizing to the bullet they use for the load. Reloaders use "mismatched/aftermarket" equipment and different bullets and powders. Anyone's free to accept or reject this outcome when loading, but unless you can show any data to indicate that it makes a difference or is unsafe, your opinion is just that.....an opinion. I've shot literally hundreds of thousands of rounds out of various 9mm bore handguns and have never had one problem using cases like this. I've seen many, many other competitors doing the same thing. I've never heard of any problems shooting ammo like this. Please share your info showing that it makes a difference and what difference it makes. As you state, "it's all in the die settings" and then ask if someone could share setup instruction.....please share yours.
Every die set comes with set-up instructions. I'd suggest that everyone follow these instructions for the best, and safest results.
 

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Regardless of a slight bulge in the case, if it chambers in your pistol, it's good to go. BTW, if you also use a case gauge, use it only for checking resized cases. After the case has been reloaded, use your pistol chamber.
 

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I went back and re-read OP's post and then nsb's post and agree that if it chambers you shouldn't worry about it. I missed that yours chambered.
In my case, I had a problem so I had to scramble to fix it.
Keep calm and shoot as much as you can.
 

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You aren't reloading off of factory equipment. At the factory, they match the sizing to the bullet they use for the load. Reloaders use "mismatched/aftermarket" equipment and different bullets and powders. Anyone's free to accept or reject this outcome when loading, but unless you can show any data to indicate that it makes a difference or is unsafe, your opinion is just that.....an opinion. I've shot literally hundreds of thousands of rounds out of various 9mm bore handguns and have never had one problem using cases like this. I've seen many, many other competitors doing the same thing. I've never heard of any problems shooting ammo like this. Please share your info showing that it makes a difference and what difference it makes. As you state, "it's all in the die settings" and then ask if someone could share setup instruction.....please share yours.
Every die set comes with set-up instructions. I'd suggest that everyone follow these instructions for the best, and safest results.
Hmmm...someone need a nap? I don't recall ever mentioning a wrinkle in the case being "unsafe". As far as making a difference, I'm not even sure where your going with that either? Never mentioned it making a difference, other than the fact it didn't look like a factory loaded round, but if it doesn't make a difference why don't they have a wrinkle forming die on the market? On my 650 I just happen to have a station on the tool head open for business. Would you buy ammo from one particular company that had this apparent "no worry issue" when another manufacturer didn't? Not I. The man started the post concerned about it and seems to be wanting to get rid of it, I simply explained what fixed it for me. Be in your book right or wrong i set my sizing die down until it touched the plate then up a half a turn. Wrinkle went away compared to being set way to far off the shell plate. Tell ya what, you shoot your reloads with the wrinkle..I'll shoot mine without and call it a day.
 

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Hmmm...someone need a nap? I don't recall ever mentioning a wrinkle in the case being "unsafe". As far as making a difference, I'm not even sure where your going with that either? Never mentioned it making a difference, other than the fact it didn't look like a factory loaded round, but if it doesn't make a difference why don't they have a wrinkle forming die on the market? On my 650 I just happen to have a station on the tool head open for business. Would you buy ammo from one particular company that had this apparent "no worry issue" when another manufacturer didn't? Not I. The man started the post concerned about it and seems to be wanting to get rid of it, I simply explained what fixed it for me. Be in your book right or wrong i set my sizing die down until it touched the plate then up a half a turn. Wrinkle went away compared to being set way to far off the shell plate. Tell ya what, you shoot your reloads with the wrinkle..I'll shoot mine without and call it a day.
No, don't need a nap. Just pointing out that the condition isn't a problem. I'll agree, you can do what ever you want. As far as safety, I'm just pointing out to the OP that he doesn't have an unsafe condition. If you knew how to fix the problem, you could have just told the OP how to fix it. You didn't. You went off on a tangent and said you got yours fixed but apparently didn't know how. It was kind of a rambling post that didn't seem to end with any positive result or comment. Your ending comment was " it would be nice if someone could post some set up instructions that had more knowledge than I do". Don't get upset if someone doesn't agree with you, the post soon degrades when civility leaves. If you're offended, I apologize for upsetting you. If you want to call it a day......does that mean you get the last word? ;)
 

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I would use an expander with that bullet, like a Lyman M Die. You are probably swagiing the bullet down.
Lyman Neck Expander M Die 9mm 380 ACP 38 Super
Good answer. I'd add that Lyman makes an M die called the 38AP which is for 9mm auto pistols. The 9mm M die is .353, the 38SPl is .356, and the 38AP is .355
A number of shooters use the 38SPL with good results but if you're going to order one, get the correct size to begin with. Then follow the instructions that come with the die. As jmortimer says, you may be swaging the bullet down somewhat. I've never noticed a difference in accuracy in any of my guns and I'm an accuracy nut. You might like the looks better. As I stated before, it's primarily cosmetic.
 

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When I press the precision (brand) bullet into the shell, I see a bulge on the side of the shell. It appears the bullet did not go in straight. I use the lee challenger press, lee dies and the lee chamfer tool. It does not seem to effect the shooting or anything but it drives me crazy trying to figure out why it happens.
I went back and looked at my notes on loading various 9mm bored handguns. The one I shot the most was a 38Super and I also had a 9x21, 356tsw, and a 9x23. I found some notes I made back then about bullet sizing and seating with those calibers. What I found were some notes regarding sizing the 9x21 in particular. The 9x21 and the 9mm are both tapered cases and the 38Super is a straight wall. With the 9x21 I had to back off the carbide sizing die a bit to avoid the problem you are describing with the "bulge" on the case. This condition is more common on straight walled calibers like the 357, 38SPl, etc due to tolerence differences between the sizing of the case and the diameter of the bullet. As stated, it's not a problem using those rounds once loaded. With the 9mm being a tapered case, not really a straight walled case, if the "bulge" appears it can be due to running the carbide sizer down too far on the case. A carbide sizing die actually is a carbide ring that squeezes the case uniformly from top to bottom. On a tapered case like the 9mm, this will actually over size the bottom of the case sometimes. If I remember correctly, the 9mm has an 11 degree taper. You can try backing off the sizing die very slightly to see if this makes the "bulge"go away. With a tapered case it's necessary to size the case so that it holds enough tension on the case mouth to keep the bullet in place. Beyond the case mouth area, it is only necessary to size enough to fit the chamber....which can be checked with a chamber gage. Give this a try and see if it helps.
 

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RAlph10,

You are correct. The cause of the unevenness in the bulge is the bullet being slightly tipped. Jacketed bullets seem mainly to straighten themselves out in the bore well enough that this isn't an issue, but with cast bullets the accuracy difference is measurable because they tend to swage into the throat at whatever angle the had in the case.

Jmoritmer steered you to the answer. Get the Lyman Mult-expander die. It comes equipped for several calibers and gives you a powder-through path. What it does is form a small step below the the flare in the mouth that you can set the bullet into so it stays straight up and down entering the seating die. This eliminates most of the bulge unevenness you identified. You will still get a few where the bulge is less pronounced on one side than the other because brass wall thickness often is not perfectly uniform.

 

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As previously mentioned, the Lyman Multi-expander die is excellent in helping to seat bullets squarely in case mouths. I use this die whenever possible.

Lacking this die, here are some helpful tips in seating bullets with a minimum amount of bulge:

Use the correct seater plug. e.g. round nosed bullet needs a round nose seater plug. The same goes for bullets with flat tips.

Place your bullet squarely in the case mouth but don't push down on the bullet. e.g. let it sit lightly in the expanded part of the case mouth. Look at the alignment E-W and N-S. Slightly off square is acceptable. More than that, adjust the bullet.

When you bring the ram up, do so smoothly so as not to tip the bullet as it travels into the die toward the seater plug.

When your bullet just touches the seater plug, apply light pressure first so that the lightly seated bullet has a chance to align itself with the plug. Then, apply normal force to complete seating the bullet.

While this process may not completely eliminate case bulges, it will help place the bulge completely around the case mouth which is pretty close to being square. If you're trying to eliminate off-center case bulges, give this a try or obtain the proper sized Lyman die.
 

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The only pistol bullets I reload are 40S&W and 10mm, both shot through Glocks. I know the Glocks factory barrels, especially the Gen2s, will leave a guppy belly where the brass is not supported because of the way they did the feed ramp into the barrel. I've always heard that it's not advisable to load the brass more than a couple of times from if it has much of that guppy belly. They are also known to put that little smiley face on the guppy belly and those should not be reloaded, and to have the gun repaied if is leaving the smiley face.
When I first started loading mine I bought a die you push the brass all the way through that fully resizes it. I don't remember who's. I used it the first time I reloaded mine and figured out with the after market barrels I'm using it was not needed
Just thought I would mention that if he's shooting a Glock, he may be getting that guppy belly. Which I don't even know if the Glock 9mm does that or not.
 

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keith do you happen to have a picture of this? Reason i ask is that my springfield SDS makes a weird design on the case when its fired. Not what i would say your refering to just curious. Thank you.
dan
 

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The worst "guppy" and "smiley face" cases I have found have not been from Glocks, although they have the reputation for creating them. Oh, I have certainly seen some bulged cases from Glocks, especially some older ones, but they are not the worst offenders. I have some samples that I have kept, but they are currently packed away somewhere as we just made a move from Texas to Arkansas. Someday soon I will get access to them again, and if no one else posts a picture, I will do that.
 
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