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Crimping on the Cannelure vs Minimum OAL Overall Length


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I'm getting back into reloading after about a 20 year break. I'm now retire and have more time. Previously mainly used Lee Loader for 6.5 X 55 Swede and 303 British but also full length resized for 270.

My question: How critical is the Minimum Overall Length (OAL). According to my load data (Modern Reloading 2021 edition) I'm out of spec but I'm holding the ten cartridges without firing them until I get clarity. I have completed the rounds except for crimping the bullets with the lee Factory Crimp Die.

I seated the 62gr FMJ boat tail bullets at 2.22 so the case neck would be right at the cannelure ready to crimp. After checked loading data specs I find the Minimum OAL is 2.26 with my load (Hornady 62 grain FMJ Boat Tail bullet, 22.5 grains of RAM TAC, CCI 41 small rifle primer, various once fired brass that I trimmed and chamfered).

I'm shooting out of autoloaders not bolt guns. One PSA M4 1/7 twist 5.56 Nato 16 inch Barrel. One BCA 223 Wylde 1/8 twist 16 inch barrel.

If I need to I can pull the bullets, and redo the rounds to spec Minimum OAL 2.26 that's OK with me.


Please let me know your thoughts on this


Thanks

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GLShooter

 

Thank you for replying to my post...

 

My main concern is would seating the bullet at 2.22 (Instead of load data stated 2.26) increase pressure beyond safe limits with my load.

 

 

Thanks

 

 

 

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On 11/19/2022 at 12:53 PM, SendIt said:

GLShooter

 

Thank you for replying to my post...

 

My main concern is would seating the bullet at 2.22 (Instead of load data stated 2.26) increase pressure beyond safe limits with my load.

 

 

Thanks

 

 

 

 

 In all honesty in almost 50 years I've NEVER seen a minimum length on a rifle cartridge. I haven't seen your book. Could you post up a pic of that page?

 

Greg

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Greg (GLShooter)

 

Due to authors being very picky about copy rights I will avoid posting a picture of the page, however I'll list the book and the page.

 

The book is Modern Reloading, Second Edition, Revised 2021, Reprinted 2022 by Richard Lee .223 Remington load data on page# 316 for 62 grain jacketed bullet.

 

Summarizing what Richard Lee states on page 37 of same book for maximum loads you should follow Over All Length (OAL) in load data. He does say that you can seat bullet deeper for reduced loads. If I recall somewhere else in the book I think I read that this is more important for hand gun loads that for rifle loads though I may have read that somewhere else.  

 

I'm using RAM TAC load of 22.5 grains, 62grain Hornady FMJBT with cannelure, CCI 41 small primer and various once fired brass trimmed and chamfered.

 

The only reason I set to length to 2.22 instead of 2.26 was to match the case neck end to the cannelure for best crimping. I understand I don't have to place the crimp on the cannelure but was trying to. If 2.22 will cause to much pressure I can reload the bullet to 2.26 OAL and crimp on the smooth part of the bullet instead of the cannelure. I do think I need to crimp since I am loading in an auto loader. When I previously reloaded for bolt actions I did not crimp my cartridges.

 

I appreciate your opinion on this as I have very little experience loading for auto loaders. I've always shot AR15s with factory ammo both in the military and and my own weapons.

 

 

 

Thanks

 

Paul

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Lee copies stuff from other sources. He rarely reference the source.  The 62 FMJ is not listed on most manuals as it is a weight that is kind of odd to be seen in the fields. Most 223's in that range are 60's an65's and 69's. Because LEE does no work on his own I have never bothered to pick up one of his books. Lots of guys love them and they  work well for them. I prefer  stuff from the bullet and powder companies. I think I use books from six different companies and the variance from book to book is very educational.  On that note I will point out that manuals are GUIDES and are not carved in stone . Any time you step away from any published spec as in bullet, lot number of powder or primers and barrel manufacturer you have just turned the book you bought into a suggested not a mandatory tome.  Just like buying a cake mix we all add or subtract somewhere on that recipe. 

 

The pressures will not get out of hand seating to the canneleur  Internal pressures will go up but realize that seating deeper also raised the volume of the chamber thereby increasing burning area and lowering the pressure.  It's a teeter totter on pressure. If you seat way away from the lands, and 2.22 is not that far, you will increase internal case pressure. As you lengthen out the case pressure drops. As you get  longer the distance to the lands will decrease causing a rise in pressure as the bullet is now starting to engrave and pressures rise. Think of an inverted bell curve for pressure with uber-short to the left and uber-long to the right. I just ran a load using a 68 grain Hornady match bullet as they did not list the 62.  The pressure difference between 2.220 and 2.260 ON THAT bullet was 1,428  PSI.  Both  were well below the 55,000 you are dealing with.  This is a COMPUTER MODEL that will get me close in most cases but not something that a guy will bet the house on.  Range numbers and observation need to be applied to it.

 

The COL on handguns cause more issue as their capacity is so low that a 0.050 shortening can raise pressures as opposed to a rifle cartridge where you may see a slight increase but well within the safe operational MAX.  You will find that MAX on any non-target application 223 will never exceed 2.260 as that is the internal size of the magazine we feed through. Seeing one that says 2.350, many do BTW, means you are dealing with single load long range stuff or altered mags in the AR. Many bolt guns can handle the extra length. We have 223 AR mags from ASC that are STAINLEES STEEL that will allow us to laod out to nominal 2.316 and these are a boon for getting close to the lands. Most AR's won't ever get you close on the lands on a factory barrel. I shoot custom barrels with custom reamers and my specs are designed around shooting a family of bullets that will actually let me go to or in to the lands.  A bit more esoteric but still embodies the realm of sane pressures and gear management. 

 

Good luck on your work. BTW I don't crimp any AR loads relying on resident neck tension to handle the job. Many disagree but my side of the argument has lots of support. My trophy rack is anecdotal proof of it too..LOL  Loading for a bot gun vs an auto does have some nuances when it comes to tolerances.  Chambers difference may enter in to it but as long as you run 0.003-0.004 tension you will be home free onthe 223 AR. In bolt guns I will go down to around 0.0005 to 0.002 depending on the cartridge and usage.

 

Greg

 

PS: One last safety tip on the AR. NEVER NECK SIZE ONLY!!  

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On 11/19/2022 at 4:32 PM, SendIt said:

Greg (GLShooter)

 

Due to authors being very picky about copy rights I will avoid posting a picture of the page, however I'll list the book and the page.

 

The book is Modern Reloading, Second Edition, Revised 2021, Reprinted 2022 by Richard Lee .223 Remington load data on page# 316 for 62 grain jacketed bullet.

 

Summarizing what Richard Lee states on page 37 of same book for maximum loads you should follow Over All Length (OAL) in load data. He does say that you can seat bullet deeper for reduced loads. If I recall somewhere else in the book I think I read that this is more important for hand gun loads that for rifle loads though I may have read that somewhere else.  

 

I'm using RAM TAC load of 22.5 grains, 62grain Hornady FMJBT with cannelure, CCI 41 small primer and various once fired brass trimmed and chamfered.

 

The only reason I set to length to 2.22 instead of 2.26 was to match the case neck end to the cannelure for best crimping. I understand I don't have to place the crimp on the cannelure but was trying to. If 2.22 will cause to much pressure I can reload the bullet to 2.26 OAL and crimp on the smooth part of the bullet instead of the cannelure. I do think I need to crimp since I am loading in an auto loader. When I previously reloaded for bolt actions I did not crimp my cartridges.

 

I appreciate your opinion on this as I have very little experience loading for auto loaders. I've always shot AR15s with factory ammo both in the military and and my own weapons.

 

 

 

Thanks

 

Paul

 

Have one of the authors old hardbound additions, 1996-97... No mention of the 62 grain projectiles in that book...

That said, Greg is on the mark there with what he has said so far.

Hodgdon has an online reloading resource that has what you're looking for.

They have a M855 FMJ projectile listed loaded up to 2.26" with Ramshot TAC. 22.5 grains is the minimum load at 49,500 psi. 

Considering your variable's, I don't think you're maxing out pressure wise. 

Since USGI magazines only allow for a maximum 2.26" cartridge length, unless you use stainless steel magazines, which allow for longer cartridge length. Cartridges are usually loaded at or shorter than the 2.26" max. length. 

So, I think you're good to go at loading to cannelure.

Now I do break with Greg on crimping for auto-loading rifles. But I do a very light crimp on a hand press by feel... To each their own...  :) 

 

Thank you

 

 

On 11/19/2022 at 5:25 PM, GLShooter said:

 The 62 FMJ is not listed on most manuals as it is a weight that is kind of odd to be seen in the fields. 

 

Greg

 

PS: One last safety tip on the AR. NEVER NECK SIZE ONLY!!  

 

Just a heads-up Greg, 

Hodgdon's online reloading resource list four different projectiles at that weight. 

Think it has to do with the military's M855 cartridge at that weight.

Otherwise, you're spot on as usual.

 

   

Thank you,

 

Glenn

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GLShooter and geepee3

 

Thank you both for your input and your experience and data passed on to me. I have more confidence that my loads are within safe operating parameters.

 

Additionally, GLShooter,  rest assured I understand neck sizing is for bolt actions only, never auto-loaders. I am only full length resizing for both my AR platform guns with a 223 Lee three die pacesetter die set. I now only have my 6.5 x 55 Swede M96 and 6.5 x 55 Swede M38 that I neck size using a Lee Loader...both of these guns have quality I do not see in modern main stream firearms today except for more expensive premium builds. I used to have a Lee Enfield 303 British and Ruger Model 77 22-250 that I neck sized for but no longer have those guns.

 

Again, thanks and if ya'll think of anything else to pass on let me know

 

Paul

 

 

 

 

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On 11/19/2022 at 4:49 PM, geepee3 said:

 

Have one of the authors old hardbound additions, 1996-97... No mention of the 62 grain projectiles in that book...

That said, Greg is on the mark there with what he has said so far.

Hodgdon has an online reloading resource that has what you're looking for.

They have a M855 FMJ projectile listed loaded up to 2.26" with Ramshot TAC. 22.5 grains is the minimum load at 49,500 psi. 

Considering your variable's, I don't think you're maxing out pressure wise. 

Since USGI magazines only allow for a maximum 2.26" cartridge length, unless you use stainless steel magazines, which allow for longer cartridge length. Cartridges are usually loaded at or shorter than the 2.26" max. length. 

So, I think you're good to go at loading to cannelure.

Now I do break with Greg on crimping for auto-loading rifles. But I do a very light crimp on a hand press by feel... To each their own...  :) 

 

Thank you

 

 

 

Just a heads-up Greg, 

Hodgdon's online reloading resource list four different projectiles at that weight. 

Think it has to do with the military's M855 cartridge at that weight.

Otherwise, you're spot on as usual.

 

   

Thank you,

 

Glenn

 

 

Thanks Glenn. The only one I didn't look at was Hodgdon. Since they bought out Western that makes perfect sense. I never load FMJ military speck stuff except my 55 grainers for my M16.

 

No doubt your method works as I've seen some outstanding work you've done. I did that big write up in the stickies using THE FCC and a torque wrench. I certainly proved the effect off various crimping in accuracy.

 

I just go along with my bushing dies adjusting neck tension.

 

Have a great Thanksgiving. Stay warm my friend.

 

Greg

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On 11/19/2022 at 5:21 PM, SendIt said:

GLShooter and geepee3

 

Thank you both for your input and your experience and data passed on to me. I have more confidence that my loads are within safe operating parameters.

 

Additionally, GLShooter,  rest assured I understand neck sizing is for bolt actions only, never auto-loaders. I am only full length resizing for both my AR platform guns with a 223 Lee three die pacesetter die set. I now only have my 6.5 x 55 Swede M96 and 6.5 x 55 Swede M38 that I neck size using a Lee Loader...both of these guns have quality I do not see in modern main stream firearms today except for more expensive premium builds. I used to have a Lee Enfield 303 British and Ruger Model 77 22-250 that I neck sized for but no longer have those guns.

 

Again, thanks and if ya'll think of anything else to pass on let me know

 

Paul

 

 

 

 

You are most welcome. GeePee is a part of the brain trust here on the ARMORY. More centuries of knowledge here than you can shake a stick at. I just chime in when I can help a tad. I guess if you keep your eyes and ears open long enough some knowledge dies stick. I'm still learning myself.

 

Greg

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On 11/19/2022 at 9:17 PM, GLShooter said:

 

 

Thanks Glenn. The only one I didn't look at was Hodgdon. Since they bought out Western that makes perfect sense. I never load FMJ military speck stuff except my 55 grainers for my M16.

 

No doubt your method works as I've seen some outstanding work you've done. I did that big write up in the stickies using THE FCC and a torque wrench. I certainly proved the effect off various crimping in accuracy.

 

I just go along with my bushing dies adjusting neck tension.

 

Have a great Thanksgiving. Stay warm my friend.

 

Greg

 

You're welcome!

Yes, I saw the excellent write up you did using the FCC and torque wrench.

Have to admit, my method for crimping is totally unorthodox. But it works for me.

Hope you and yours have a great Thanksgiving too!

I'm in Florida... Think I got the warm thing covered... :segrin:

Thanks again!

 

Glenn

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8 hours ago, SendIt said:

GLShooter and geepee3

 

Thank you both for your input and your experience and data passed on to me. I have more confidence that my loads are within safe operating parameters.

 

Additionally, GLShooter,  rest assured I understand neck sizing is for bolt actions only, never auto-loaders. I am only full length resizing for both my AR platform guns with a 223 Lee three die pacesetter die set. I now only have my 6.5 x 55 Swede M96 and 6.5 x 55 Swede M38 that I neck size using a Lee Loader...both of these guns have quality I do not see in modern main stream firearms today except for more expensive premium builds. I used to have a Lee Enfield 303 British and Ruger Model 77 22-250 that I neck sized for but no longer have those guns.

 

Again, thanks and if ya'll think of anything else to pass on let me know

 

Paul

 

 

 

 

 

Since you have solid info that you will not be exceeding safe pressures by seating to the cannelure, you could shoot a couple of rounds you already loaded, and do a thorough inspection of the brass for signs of over pressure. If you are GTG, shoot the other 8 rounds, and if you see no signs of over pressure, you know that exact loading in that exact gun will not be a problem for you. Then just keep and eye on them. I always examined the brass and primers from my reloads every time for signs of overpressure, not only from the load specs, but because of normal wear and tear on the brass.  

 

Have fun !

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Nothing to add here other than as mentioned I think the shorter OAL will be just fine.  Also as mentioned, shoot one and look for overpressure signs.  I don’t think you’ll see any, but it’s never a bad idea to check.

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