Reloading for 9mm

anthony20031

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Hey guys, I'm relatively new here and to reloading. I am starting off reloading 9mm and then once I feel comfortable I figure I will jump into 5.56 and .308. I have everything I need and feel comfortable with most of my equipment. I have for now a single stage Lee press as I wanted to start off with something a little elementary and grow into more expensive high end equipment. So the last thing I actually need to decide on and purchase is my powder. I have been trying to do some research but there are so many powders out there and a lot of opinions as well (yes I know that is what I will get in response here but I feel that people here have a lot of experience and the more experienced peoples opinion I can get the better I believe...it will at least help me at my starting point.

With all that said my question is obviously what powders do you guys use for those that reload 9mm. I am currently using 124gr bullets (I may switch to 147gr....which is another debate I am having with myself of the pros and cons) and want something that meters easily, burns clean etc. Thanks guys!
 

BobinNC

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

Anthony,

I've never been one to discourage anyone from reloading but, the 9mm luger is one of the more difficult rounds to reload. Short tapered case, and requiring a oh so correct crimp to headspace properly, among it's other virtues. Plus it is one of the cheaper rounds to just buy factory ammo for, meaning a minimal savings via reloading. And loading 500 at a time, on a single stage press is a might tedious. And tedious leads to errors.

Therefore, IMHO it is a poor candidate choice for a first time reloader. The 308 winchester however, is among the easiest round to reload, of the three you mentioned.

Just saying......,

Bob
 

Outsydlooknin75

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

Ive been reloading 9mm on a single stage with no probs, I will process 1000 cases at a time. Deprime/resize, then bell them all, then prime em, then powder throw in lots of 25, then seat and crimp those 25, and then do more.

My current load is 5.8 grains of HS-6 under a Berry's 124 grain plated hollow point. Its subsonic and real soft shooting, but still makes power factor for USPSA.

A lot of the USPSA shooters are shooting 4.0 grains of titegroup under 124's. The thing to remember is dont set them too deep and dont put too much crimp on it, and you will be fine.
 

anthony20031

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: BobinNC</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Anthony,

I've never been one to discourage anyone from reloading but, the 9mm luger is one of the more difficult rounds to reload. Short tapered case, and requiring a oh so correct crimp to headspace properly, among it's other virtues. Plus it is one of the cheaper rounds to just buy factory ammo for, meaning a minimal savings via reloading. And loading 500 at a time, on a single stage press is a might tedious. And tedious leads to errors.

Therefore, IMHO it is a poor candidate choice for a first time reloader. The 308 winchester however, is among the easiest round to reload, of the three you mentioned.

Just saying......,

Bob</div></div>

Thanks for the advice. I haven't really jumped much into the LR shooting quite yet and was the main reason I was holding off on the .308, but it is something I am looking more and more to get into and hence why I joined this site. The reason I had chosen the 9mm was becuase I shoot it quite a lot (along with 5.56) and was thinking about jumping into some competition. I also have a ton of 9mm brass. I did do a cost analysis on reloading 9mm and it seemed I would save around $100 per 1k rounds (maybe I need to re-evaluate that and look at my numbers again). I do shoot a lot of 5.56 as well and maybe I should at least do my first reloads in 5.56 and then try it out with 9mm once I have gained some confidence?
 

anthony20031

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Outsydlooknin75</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Ive been reloading 9mm on a single stage with no probs, I will process 1000 cases at a time. Deprime/resize, then bell them all, then prime em, then powder throw in lots of 25, then seat and crimp those 25, and then do more.

My current load is 5.8 grains of HS-6 under a Berry's 124 grain plated hollow point. Its subsonic and real soft shooting, but still makes power factor for USPSA.

A lot of the USPSA shooters are shooting 4.0 grains of titegroup under 124's. The thing to remember is dont set them too deep and dont put too much crimp on it, and you will be fine. </div></div>

Ok...Titegroup has been one that has come up a lot. Also I know they sell the HS-6 down the street from me.
 

Steven Dzupin

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

I must agree with BobinNC.

9mm can be a bear especially with mixed headstamped cases & range pickups.
Varying neck wall thickness can drive you to strong drink.LOL

In desperation I made my own expander plug and have minimised
issues.

Press some of your completed rounds agains your loading bench
and see if the projectiles can be pushed back further into
the case,if so you need a smaller expander plug.

You don't want the projectiles to move back during weapon cycling.
Shortening a round will cause malfunctions or worse a KA-BOOM!
Dramatic increase in chamber pressure.

A taper crimp die works well to straighten out any flare on your case mouths. Just don't overdue it.

Regards & Good Shooting,

Steve
 

Joe-n-TX

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

I started with rifle before pistol....

I reload both 9mm and .357. Nine is no different than any other except for being smaller and that can be a little difficult with large hands.(from what I've found)

Back when I was getting started I read that .45ACP is one of the best calibers to start reloading with. Hard to double charge and easy to handle/manipulate.

Well, I didn't have a .45 so I had to make due.

Now, I don't use any cast bullets in my 9mm auto loadings. But, I use cast exclusively in .357. Way cheap!

I use Unique powder for both. Works well. Some say its a little dirty but I can find it easy and haven't had any problems with it.

Good luck.
 

BobinNC

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: anthony20031</div><div class="ubbcode-body">

Thanks for the advice. I haven't really jumped much into the LR shooting quite yet and was the main reason I was holding off on the .308, but it is something I am looking more and more to get into and hence why I joined this site. The reason I had chosen the 9mm was becuase I shoot it quite a lot (along with 5.56) and was thinking about jumping into some competition. I also have a ton of 9mm brass. I did do a cost analysis on reloading 9mm and it seemed I would save around $100 per 1k rounds (maybe I need to re-evaluate that and look at my numbers again). I do shoot a lot of 5.56 as well and maybe I should at least do my first reloads in 5.56 and then try it out with 9mm once I have gained some confidence? </div></div>

Anthony,

Yes, you are right. With 9mm you "save" about $100. per 1000 rounds. But for a 308 Winchester you "save" about $360. per 1000 Rounds, or 3.6 times as much.

Just something to consider.

Bob
 

anthony20031

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: BobinNC</div><div class="ubbcode-body"><div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: anthony20031</div><div class="ubbcode-body">

Thanks for the advice. I haven't really jumped much into the LR shooting quite yet and was the main reason I was holding off on the .308, but it is something I am looking more and more to get into and hence why I joined this site. The reason I had chosen the 9mm was becuase I shoot it quite a lot (along with 5.56) and was thinking about jumping into some competition. I also have a ton of 9mm brass. I did do a cost analysis on reloading 9mm and it seemed I would save around $100 per 1k rounds (maybe I need to re-evaluate that and look at my numbers again). I do shoot a lot of 5.56 as well and maybe I should at least do my first reloads in 5.56 and then try it out with 9mm once I have gained some confidence? </div></div>

Anthony,

Yes, you are right. With 9mm you "save" about $100. per 1000 rounds. But for a 308 Winchester you "save" about $360. per 1000 Rounds, or 3.6 times as much.

Just something to consider.

Bob</div></div>

Yh your correct and I understand. It's just that if I decide to take up competitions, which I hope to relatively soon, I will be going through a lot of 9mm. Let's say even 2-3k per month (don't know just throwing it out there). That's $200-$300 per month which is decent savings...not as great as .308. I plan on reloading for the 308 and the 5.56 as well. My reasoning for starting with 9mm first was becuase of my greater need for it right now as I want to start competing with pistol first. While I definitely want to start to get more into LR, right now with the pistol competitions I hope to join, I will have to stock up on 9mm.

I'm glad I signed on here as most of you guys really seem to know your stuff and have a wealth of knowledge.
smile.gif


Guess just to explain and give more background is that I just got into firearms about 2 yrs ago and have spent a lot (really lot lol) of time at the range in that time. However I decided I wanted to get into more realistic training first with my pistol (being in more realistic scenarios rather than just at a firing range especially considering I have a CCW) and then with my rifles and getting into the science of LR shooting. So I am deciding to take some pistol courses and start competing which means lots of rounds and I figure reloading will cut down on costs. After that (or alongside that) I want to get more proficient and take courses with rifles and that includes both CQ (AR) and LR (700).

Well hope that wasn't too much of a ramble, it's been a long day and now it's time to head home from work!
smile.gif
Appreciate all responses and insight!
 

pdogdown

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

+1.

Starting with pistol is pretty frustrating. But I have had great luck with Universal Clays 3.4g to recommended length in Lyman manual. Goes a lot further than some powders that take 5+ a charge. Just be careful because it is possible to get a double charge. Grab a .308 or .223 die and start there. The lee .223 die give a good amount of neck tension with the LC09 brass and is very accurate.
 

shadow4

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

Anthony, No offense but, if you are going to be loading 2k-3k 9mm rounds on a single stage press a month it may work out for you to just buy loaded ammo (If you value your time). I reloaded pistol on a single stage for about a year (took me a looooong time just to crank out 200 rounds on it too). Needless to say I didn't shoot a lot of pistol b/c of this. When I did start to wanting to shoot more pistol I bought a progressive press. I can not crank out 300-350 per hour with out even breaking a sweat. I'd say the progressive press makes me about 5 to 6 times faster than my single stage did.

Its going to take you a LOT of time to crank out 2-3k rounds on a single stage. Heck, it would take me about 10 +/- hours with my progressive.

BTW, for a powder recommendation for 9mm I like Titegroup.
 

Amric

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

I load 9mm, 5.56, .308, and 300WM all on a single stage press. I load about 200 9mm per week. It does take a while, but I think it is far easier to load 9mm than any rifle load.

My current favorite load is:
124gr FMJ
4.1gr Titegroup
1.14 OAL

Try it, you will like it, but as others have said already, your requirement of 500+ rounds per week required alot of time on a single stage.

One tip. Before loading up thousands of rounds, at least shoot a couple hundred in your pistol to ensure they feed and cycle well. Also unlike with some rifle handloading, make sure to fully resize the case. Even if the case ends up loose in the chamber, I don't know any pistols that can not out shoot their owners.
 

ewoaf

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

Don't let no one tell you that you don't want to reload 9mm. Do it if you want to. I do it on a single stage like Outsy, but I'm doing lots of 500. Will it save you money?...of course. Is it a pain in the ass?....you bet. But isn't it harder than .308?.....no it's way easy to load for pistol. I tumble, resize, bell, prime, charge and seat. No trimming, no primer pockets, I mix head stamps, whatever... When they look questionable, they get tossed. Just follow the simple instructions in your manual of choice and you'll be fine. I figure I'm saving myself about $55 every time I reload a lot of 500. It's very worth it to me, but I do have to put the extra work in.

ps, I'm using unique....just a lot of it around here, and I can use it for my shotgun loads.
 

Rafael

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Re: Reloading for 9mm

I load for my Sig P250 9mm on my Hornady LNL-AP press and it works well for me.
115 and 124 FMJ's with CCI standard primers and Hodgdon Titegroup @ 4.5 and 4.2 grains.
 

mdmp5

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: BobinNC</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Anthony,

    I've never been one to discourage anyone from reloading but, the 9mm luger is one of the more difficult rounds to reload. Short tapered case, and requiring a oh so correct crimp to headspace properly, among it's other virtues. Plus it is one of the cheaper rounds to just buy factory ammo for, meaning a minimal savings via reloading. And loading 500 at a time, on a single stage press is a might tedious. And tedious leads to errors.

    Therefore, IMHO it is a poor candidate choice for a first time reloader. The 308 winchester however, is among the easiest round to reload, of the three you mentioned.

    Just saying......,

    Bob</div></div>

    Come on Bob, don't scare the guy. It is a straight walled pistol case. There is no shoulder bumping to worry about, no issues with neck tension, seating depth is not as important as rifle, and there are almost no stuck case issues. You just size, pour, seat and crimp and that is all. It doesn't get any easier than that. I started my first loads with .45 ACP, and I'm glad I did that to warm up before moving to .223 and .308.
     

    mdmp5

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    But I do agree that loading pistol on a single stage is a pain in the ass. I do all my pistol in a 550, and rifle on a t7.
     

    BlackHeart2

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    I use 7.5gr Alliant Power Pistol with 115 Hornady HP/XTP and wolf small pistol primers {cause the're cheap} OAL 1.125 out of a Beretta 92. Haven't graffed them don't know what they move at but perform great. SEMPI FI
     

    terrance250

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    Berry's 124RN over 4.7 grains of Unique, Winchester small primers, OAL 1.15".

    Just shoot my first Steel match yesterday using this load and was very pleased. Clean, soft, & accurate out of my XDM9.
     

    anthony20031

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    Well I just ended up purchasing Universal. They were out of Titegroup and Unique so figured I would give Universal a shot.
     

    Ishallbie O'Cullkillin

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    I would love to own a 550, but have opted to use the cash to buy premium components instead. I have two single stage presses, a Lyman 1200 DPS 3, and a Forster powder dispenser. I don't know about everyone else, but most of my handloading occurs in the evening when there is nothing else to do but watch tv, not to mention it rains a LOT here. 8yrs ago, I started handloading .40s&w, no problems*. I soon got into .223, no problems*. Then .308, 6.5 Grendel, .300 whisper sub & supersonic, .300winmag, .243,.45acp, 10mm, and 9mm, with no problems*. Just pay attention to what you are doing and keep your process simple. Check your charged cases before seating for empty cases or double charges, and many of the issues you run into will reveal themselves before you actually fire the ammo.I have loaded batches of 2400 .223 & 9mm, and can casually produce 100-150rds an hr. I never had an issue using range pick up brass, but I inspect thoroughly. In 8yrs I have seen 9 popped primers, 8 split case necks, one almost case head separate, and the occasional cycling issues associated with semi autos and COAL's.
    I will say that having a deadline for getting some loads done kind of takes the fun out, but it happens, and can open you up for mistakes.


    *= catastrophic failure
     

    TOP PREDATOR

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    another load or two

    to equal winchester 115 gr jhp factory loads (which was pretty accurate for me)at 1148 fps and a 4" barrel

    115 gr hp or fmj, winc. sm. pistol primer, oal 1.090, 8 gr. of blue dot, 1143 fps (makes a nice 2 foot flame out of a 4" barrel)

    winc. 231 powder 4.6 grains, 1135 fps

    for IDPA shooting, the min fps to be legal was 1087 fps with a 115 gr. head, so i went with 115 fmj and 4.4 gr of 231, 1113 fps to be on the safe side to meet requirements.

    231 (4" barrel)
    4.4 1113 fps
    4.2 1072 fps
    4.0 1023 fps
    3.8 978 fps

    time per 50 rounds on a single stage with carbide dies

    size / decap / expand 7 min
    prime 7 min
    charge / seat / taper crimp 40 min

    = 54 min

    5 years ago when i unit priced them per round using 8 gr of blue dot:

    powder $0.018 was 16.00 lb
    heads $0.049 was 48.99 for 500
    primers $0.015 was 15.00 for 100
    cases $0.00 picked up at the range

    for using the blue dot i got 875 rounds per pound using 8 gr. each round.

    at the time, $0.082 a round, $4.10 per 50

    using 231 was cheaper, as it used less powder and went further than the blue dot and the price of a pound was about the same. i didn't break down the 231 down as much though.
     

    jwoolf

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    IMHO, get a progressive press to do the pistol with.

    What's the old saying, "you have to be knee deep in pistol brass before you even begin to learn to shoot a pistol proficiently".

    I believe that to be true.

    That being said, if you shoot that much pistol, you're going to need a quality progressive auto-indexing press with a case feeder.

    Then get a single stage or turret press to do the rifle ammo on.
    IMHO, loading rifle ammo is a labor of love but, to do it right, it is a labor. Once you're set up to load pistol on a progressive press, you can really turn it out quickly. I just loaded 2000 rounds for a buddy of mine wed and thurs night last week. I did 1000 45acp and 1000 9mm. Personally, I don't like loading the 9mm.

    Generally 9mm brass is a PITA. You'll find cases mixed in ( if you get mixed brass ), with a military crimp ( I just toss those ), primer pockets just don't cooperate on a lot of that brass. The cost savings is there but, it's almost not worth it since, I don't shoot much 9mm anyway. I load the hell out of my 45 acp, however.

    Pistol vs. rifle is like apples and oranges as far as reloading go. ( to me ) Pistol is a mass production event.... rifle is a lot of fussing over getting everything exactly the same from round to round along with load development.

    All that being said, if you're new to reloading, you're going to need a single stage press and, that's always a good place to start but, it won't take long trying to make 9mm on one of those before you find yourself buying a progressive press and case feeder. It's all relative though, if you don't mind sitting in front of a press for hours trying to get a small amount out or, you don't shoot that many rounds, a single stage is fine for pistol. On the other hand, with a case feeder set up, you can crank them out as fast as you can feed the bullets and pull the handle. I've heard wild claims of rounds/hour on a progressive press but, I'll spend between 2 and 3hrs knocking out 1000 rounds of pistol. That includes set up times and trips to the fridge for beer, changing primer tubes etc. at a very casual pace.

    FWIW, I use a Dillon XL650 and case feeder on all my pistol ammo and, Hornady and others make quality presses too but, if or whan you do decide to get a progressive press, buy a good one and don't skimp too much. ( buy once, cry once ) LOL
     

    PLeighton

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    Re: Reloading for 9mm

    My primary setup is for .308 and is all Redding dies on a RCBS RC-Supreme, modified to use Hornady LnL bushings,
    and all cartridges are charges using a RCBS Charge Master.

    With that being said, I decided since I had most of the equipment already, why not setup to do 9mm & 5.56mm as well.
    I have found the Lee dies to be a good solution for me.
    One of the features that I like is using the Lee Auto-Disk Powder Measure with the 9mm expander die or the Lee Rifle Charging Die (used for 5.56mm) is a real time saver.
    Couple that with how Lee combines the crimping and seating processes and you have a pretty slick setup.

    What I like about using a single stage press for these loads that are normally done by progressive presses is the ability to focus on a single operation regardless of how tedious it is.
    This IMO cuts down on the chances that you will err.
    Couple that with how quick the die changes are with the LnL bushings, my single stage is every bit as fast as a turret press.
    If I don't have enough time, I just use some Winchester White Box and roll on.

    As for powder, I like to use Alliant Power Pistol with 125 grain Hornady Action Pistol bullets.

    Hope this info may be of some use to use.