Question of the Day: Do You REALLY Want to Shoot Reloads?

thefirearmblog.com offers its expert readers a series of pictures of an HK 45-C that done blowed up good. Seems “Reloads were used, and its suspected to have been an ‘extra powder’ error in measurement, no fault of the pistol. [Make the jump for a closeup of the spent cartridge.] The shooter’s hand was burned a bit but the real injury is the busted HK… By the way the barrel bore and suppressor baffles had no damage, and the slide appears ok too . . .

“On observation we think the Hogue grip helped to protect his hand from the blow-out. And later in the day it was noticed that a pice of ‘flak’ had hit a tube of lithium grease and pierced it; I think it was the extractor.”

Extractor? I just met her. But seriously folks, I don’t shoot reloads. You?

comments

  1. avatar 67dodgeman says:

    Yes, all the time. Reload my own mostly, but on occasion will pick up some cheap .38's or .45's from a gun show. I have a progressive reloader that can really crank out the rounds, but also has the most risk of a double charge if you're not paying attention. So, I usually set aside some time with no distractions to reload. I also choose a powder/case combination where a double load is readily visible. In most of my loads, if I accidentally double, powder will be spilling out of the top of the case and be instantly recognized.

    My biggest issue isn't an overcharge, but a FTF. Once a case has been used several times, you'll need to clean out the primer opening in order to properly seat the primer. I'm lazy, so I'll try to skip it. Then the primer won't seat all the way, then the firing pin won't ignite the primer. That's why I practice with reloads, but only put factory ammo in for self-defence.

  2. avatar sevesteen says:

    I would be fine buying reloads from a major established commercial reloader with a reputation to protect. I shoot my own reloads all the time. I would not buy generic gunshow reloads, or even range reloads.

    I only carry factory ammo.

  3. avatar NukemJim says:

    Do I want to shoot reloads? Head says no, wallet says yes. I cannot setup a reloading station with current living arrangements so either I shoot reloads or I shoot much less than I believe is needed to maintain skill level.

    If money were not an object, then no I would not shoot reloads.

    NukemJim

  4. avatar Nathan Fellows says:

    When I’m putting powder in and seating bullets I do it with the dogs out, my phone off, my roommate gone and classical music, because that is the only part that really matters. If you miss resizing a case or cleaning out a primer pocket, meh, there aren’t too many terrible things that are going to happen. I’ve never had a failure to fire, case head separation or a double charge.

    Granted, I don’t really reload pistol rounds. I save my brass and I have the dies for 9mm, but mostly that’s just in case we have another ammo shortage, SHTF, or something similar that impacts my ability to get 9mm. With rifle rounds there isn’t much opportunity to double charge, at least without it pouring all over the damn table. I couldn’t fit a double charge in 30-06, .308, or .223 if I wanted to.

    I agree with the other commenters though, only carry factory ammo. No reason to give a prosecutor any more “ammo” that you cooked up some ballistic horror in you garage.

    With that in mind though, I’ve had problems with factory ammo, but never with handloads, so reliability really isn’t the issue with reloads.

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