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Thread: Aluminum Cases ?

  1. #1
    Boolit Bub
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    Aluminum Cases ?

    I am having a problem with aluminum cases.

    I recently purchased 5k primed aluminum cases from RMR. The cases are from Federal demilled ammo.

    I am using 115 and 124 grain cast bullets.

    The primers are "blowing" out of the cases when fired - 50% - 60% of the rounds. This occurs in all of my 9mm semi's.

    I called RMR and they say my load must be over pressure. But, this is the same load I use in brass cases. And this never happens.

    I use Titegroup powder and I load by the book. My overall length is 1.13"


    What do you think?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    I was under the impression that aluminum cases were not suitable for reloading.
    The ENEMY is listening.
    HE wants to know what YOU know.
    Keep it to yourself.

  3. #3
    Boolit Man Rcmaveric's Avatar
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    If the aluminum cases have a different case capacity than brass then it could cause an over pressure. Try comparing their case capacities. A few grains difference in a small 9mm case can have a big difference in pressure.
    "Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far."
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  4. #4
    Boolit Master Boolit_Head's Avatar
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    Brass and aluminum don't act the same. The material does not the same spring back so the dies designed for brass cases don't work well, that is one of the reasons they are not advised for reloading. To me Aluminum cases are disposable.
    On every question of construction let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed.

    Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Johnson, June 12, 1823

  5. #5
    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    Blaser aluminum cases from CCI are Berdan primed to discourage reloading. I would use starting loads as max and see if it helps.
    If they are Boxer primed they are still not suitable for reloading. One and done with aluminum.

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  6. #6
    Boolit Bub
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    "primed aluminum cases from RMR. The cases are from Federal demilled ammo."

    These are "NEW" casings. These were never "fired".

    Ammo was manufactured by FEDERAL and sold to RMR. RMR de-milled the ammo and sold the casings and bullets.

    I respectfully disagree. There is no data to support this statement. =>
    "If the aluminum cases have a different case capacity than brass then it could cause an over pressure. Try comparing their case capacities. A few grains difference in a small 9mm case can have a big difference in pressure."



    My load is 3.8 grains Titegroup. These chrono close to 1,000 fps. (124 gr , 0.355" , cast RN)

    Hodgdon states 3.6 g @ 957 @ 27,700 to 4.1 g @ 1,057 fps @ 32,700 psi. (124 g , 0.356" , Plated Bullet)
    Last edited by wildphilhickup; 08-27-2017 at 01:20 AM. Reason: added info

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rcmaveric View Post
    If the aluminum cases have a different case capacity than brass then it could cause an over pressure. Try comparing their case capacities. A few grains difference in a small 9mm case can have a big difference in pressure.
    This is certainly true when loading military cases that have thicker brass. What is an okay load with commercial brass can blow primers in military cases. Never considered loading aluminum but I would have to believe the same rules would apply. YMMV

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    Easy enough to confirm the case capacity, and less case capacity could well be your answer. That is why I am very careful of COL , more bullet in the case is less capacity( effective) and increases pressure. Shows up in above expected velocity ,usually. Fill an AL case with 296, or other fine powder then dump and weigh. Do the same with one of your brass cases, see if there is a difference, no need to guess, eliminate it as a possible cause or confirm , whichever. Measure variables and quantify when possible, helps solve problems .
    “You don’t practice until you get it right. You practice until you can’t get it wrong.” Jason Elam, All-Pro kicker, Denver Broncos

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    A lot of the issue is that the aluminium and steel cases are not to be reloaded after firing due to the fact that they may work in a safe manner the first time, but the nature of the metals used and the heat generated by firings makes them go from being "first grade brass casings" on the factory load, to being "the cartridge uncle timmy shot and reloaded 20 times before dumping on the floor at the gun range"

  10. #10
    Boolit Bub
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    PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS "NEW" UN-FIRED ALUMINUM CASINGS.

    Spoke to a Federal "Technician" this morning. The problem has nothing to do with case capacity. There are so many different manufactures of 9mm brass, that if this were true, then reloading manuals would refer to a specific brass manufacture for a given load. Much like the shotshell loading books.

    Without knowing the lot number the Technician can not confirm the exact issue, but believes;

    The problem is either one of two issues with the "primer" in the aluminum case. (This is why Federal stated to me that RMR should not be selling the aluminum casings.)

    1) The primers are not seated correctly, (tension / pressure), in the case. The "hole" in the case is too large. *Might be able to confirm by using a hand "de-capper" and attempt to determine if very little pressure will remove the primer from the case. *Try to compare to primed brass case.

    2) The primer has "poor" ignition. This may be the reason why the lot was rejected if not reason #1. *Might be able to confirm by firing primed cases - no powder / no bullet. *Try to compare to primed brass cases. Have someone stand close by, "outside", and see if they are able to determine a notable difference in report.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    Well then I hope you can get a refund. Self decapping cases are not good.

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  12. #12
    Boolit Master Boolit_Head's Avatar
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    Just say no to aluminum.

    Friends don't let friends shoot aluminum.



    Can we think of more?
    On every question of construction let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed.

    Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Johnson, June 12, 1823

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Sounds as if RMR is selling components scrapped by Federal. Those cases could be out of spec in metallurgy , soft. I would have a discussion with RMR, Federal probably is !
    “You don’t practice until you get it right. You practice until you can’t get it wrong.” Jason Elam, All-Pro kicker, Denver Broncos

  14. #14
    Boolit Master





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    Probably de-milled due to the problem IMHO

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Try popping a few primers out and see if the work in brass cases without blowing out. just a thought

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    I have them picked up on my range just so their not "TEMPING " to pick up and be used..

  17. #17
    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by wildphilhickup View Post
    "primed aluminum cases from RMR. The cases are from Federal demilled ammo."

    These are "NEW" casings. These were never "fired".

    Ammo was manufactured by FEDERAL and sold to RMR. RMR de-milled the ammo and sold the casings and bullets.

    I respectfully disagree. There is no data to support this statement. =>
    "If the aluminum cases have a different case capacity than brass then it could cause an over pressure. Try comparing their case capacities. A few grains difference in a small 9mm case can have a big difference in pressure."



    My load is 3.8 grains Titegroup. These chrono close to 1,000 fps. (124 gr , 0.355" , cast RN)

    Hodgdon states 3.6 g @ 957 @ 27,700 to 4.1 g @ 1,057 fps @ 32,700 psi. (124 g , 0.356" , Plated Bullet)
    Aluminum and reloading should not be in the same sentence. Unfortunately you have learned a lesson not to purchase aluminum cases. Count your lucky stars you and your gun haven't been hurt and simply dispose of them and purchase ONLY brass to reload.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    5000. Ouch.

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  19. #19
    Boolit Man

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    Hmmm. Interesting information here. I have thought about buying aluminum cases before to use at lost brass matches. Maybe I won't do it now.

    I would definitely work up new loads with starting loads if I changed to a new unproven component. That's the safe way to load ammo.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by wildphilhickup View Post
    PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS "NEW" UN-FIRED ALUMINUM CASINGS.

    Spoke to a Federal "Technician" this morning. The problem has nothing to do with case capacity. There are so many different manufactures of 9mm brass, that if this were true, then reloading manuals would refer to a specific brass manufacture for a given load. Much like the shotshell loading books....
    Reloading manuals DO specify what make of brass they are using as construction of the cases can cause different results. At least that is the case with Hornady, Sierra, Speer, and Lyman reloading manuals. They identify the specific make of brass used for each cartridge.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check