Saturday, September 6, 2008

Rainy day reloading

On a day when even ducks are.... well.... ducking, what better to do than reload some ammunition? After a good breakfast of lox, eggs, and rye toast, I swam out to the shed and powered up.

Exhaust fans, lights, radio..... and my peaceful little world was assembled and ready. I loaded a few hundred rounds of 9mm, enough to last a couple range sessions. I try to shoot the nine millimeter every range visit, no matter why I am there. It's my defensive carry weapon, and even a box a week of practice is a good idea.

6.5 grains of Alliant Power Pistol under a 124 grain JHP, with a CCI primer. All in Winchester cases, and taper crimped for a secure bullet and reliable function.

The photos show some of the rounds discolored... no matter how many times they have been through the polisher. There is a story there.

Like all hand loaders, I am a brass scavenger. When I'm at the range I'll pick up every reloadable case I see on the ground, whether I shoot that cartridge or not. Even if its a stranger to my stable, one day it may not be. Trading also happens, and barter material is most welcome.

In the case of my 9mm carry piece...... I had that caliber in mind as I shopped for pistols for one main reason. The brass was free. I already had over 1000 empties, even though I didn't own a nine at the time. Each range visit would land another handful in the can, maybe a bag full.

Some of the brass I picked up had been on the ground for quite a while... and discolored to the point it was never coming back. That doesn't bother me... it loads and shoots well, and what else matters?

For me, scavenging brass is just part of the fun at my range. It's a hunt, with the neglected cases calling out to me: "Save us! Make us whole again! Give us purpose!" Finding a .45 case is like running across an old friend...... acquiring a handful of .357 sig cases causes me to consider another pistol acquisition. Its all an adventure.

My next pistol purchase might just be .40 caliber.... as that can of range picks is getting full. :-)


Anonymous said...

My five gallon bucket is almost full of brass in calibers that I don't reload, mostly 40s. I load 9mm and 45. It is interesting what cases you can find sometimes. Who fires 10mm and doesn't pick up their brass?

William the Coroner said...

How do you tell that a case is worth reloading or not? I know you can't reload rimfires, and I'd be leery of reloading aluminium cases, but otherwise isn't it all fair game?

Shrugged says: said...


Pretty much any brass case that is not Berdan primed is reloadable.
To the rabidly dedicated, even Berdan primed cases may have a second life.

For me, I stick to boxer primed brass as challenge enough.

Take a look over on Carteach0 blog for some posts of reloading.