Titan ReloadingRotoMetals2Lee PrecisionStainLess Steel Media
ADvertise hereInline FabricationGraf & Sons

Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Using a semi-auto to determine load safety?

  1. #1
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Western Colorado
    Posts
    83

    Using a semi-auto to determine load safety?

    I am new to shot shell reloading and am currently only using published loads. Mostly I am tinkering with short shells so loads seem pretty light. In a couple of cases I would like to increase either the powder or shot slightly (not seeking an anti-tank load!). It occurred to me today that one of the things about short shells is that they frequently won't cycle a semi-auto. I know that there are different burn rates and that the pressure profile is important.

    Would it be a safe method to make small incremental changes to a load and test them in the semi-auto if I stopped when there was just enough pressure to cycle the action? Given what I am working on, other factors may prevent the pressure from even getting that high.

    I just want to be safe and not have to buy any replacement parts (or fingers!).

  2. #2
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    39.7594 N, 84.1917 W
    Posts
    292
    I'm new to the shotshell world as well, I'm curious to see what this brings ....

    I've been told that downloading can be just as dangerous as overloading.
    I'm looking for Lyman Truline Jr / 310 dies. PM me if you have any.

    Scott

    You can easily judge the character of others by how they treat those who they think can do nothing for them.

    38 Super - DOB 02/06
    Commander - DOB 02/12
    Delta Elite - DOB - 1989

  3. #3
    Boolit Master gnostic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Somewhere over the rainbow...
    Posts
    233
    Shotgun shells are loaded by the manual, meaning, use the wad, shot, hull, primer and powder charge as recommended. Shotguns aren't made to handle high pressure and with fast powder, anything can happen.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
    Hogtamer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    East central GA, Appling near Augusta
    Posts
    1,899
    You could get out of bounds pretty easy with short shells.
    "My main ambition in life is to be on the devil's most wanted list."
    Leonard Ravenhill

  5. #5
    Boolit Master GhostHawk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Fargo ND
    Posts
    3,484
    What Gnostic said, find a recipe and stick to it. No substitutions.

  6. #6
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Posts
    251
    There are PUBLISHED, SAFE loads for any length shotshell you can imagine. "Short shells" should only be used in short chambered guns. Would you "experiment" with a 300 WinMag by adding 5 more grains of powder and then shooting it in your R1 to see if it's okay ?

    Where do these questions come from ?

  7. #7
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Western Colorado
    Posts
    83
    Quote Originally Posted by Eldon View Post
    There are PUBLISHED, SAFE loads for any length shotshell you can imagine. "Short shells" should only be used in short chambered guns. Would you "experiment" with a 300 WinMag by adding 5 more grains of powder and then shooting it in your R1 to see if it's okay ?

    Where do these questions come from ?
    Please reread the OP. It is a simple question about a possible method to SAFELY increase either the load or powder by a SMALL amount when the 7/8oz load is light enough to not cycle a semi-auto.

    I will be sticking to published loads unless someone provides a credible answer that indicates that there is a safe way to increase them. Since there are others who have similar interests, the answers to my OP might save someone else if they are inclined to try it first and then ask "what happened"

    300 mag increased by 5gr? Yes, .2 grains at a time from a published starting load while watching for pressure signs. Unfortunately shotshell reloading is a different beast with different rules.

    I do appreciate that you took the time to reply, even though it rubbed me the wrong way.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master bikerbeans's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,099
    Quote Originally Posted by Eldon View Post
    There are PUBLISHED, SAFE loads for any length shotshell you can imagine. "Short shells" should only be used in short chambered guns. Would you "experiment" with a 300 WinMag by adding 5 more grains of powder and then shooting it in your R1 to see if it's okay ?

    Where do these questions come from ?
    I am wondering where these type of answers come from.

    BB

  9. #9
    Boolit Master Boolit_Head's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    787
    With shotshells you not only have pressure concerns but stack height concerns. Not all safe charges will work with all wads due to the total stack height to get a good crimp. In that way reloading shotshells is not like reloading metallic cartridges. Shotshell loads are not considered to be open to substitutions for those reasons.

    If you are talking about the short Aquila type of shells there is little chance that they would function properly in a semi due to the length let alone the pressure. Semi auto shotguns are particular to the length of the shells for feeding.
    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

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    South Louisiana
    Posts
    677
    Please explain exactly what you mean by "short shells". Are these shells shorter than 2 3/4"? Is this in a 12 ga? If so, you can find published loads for 7/8 oz in a 2 3/4" shell that should work fine. No need to shorten the shell, just use the proper wad. If the semi-auto gun is gas operated, then a change to a different burn rate powder may give you the port pressure that you need for reliable function. Extensive tests have shown that increasing velocity of shotshells can actually decrease downrange effectiveness. Shotshells kill more from multiple hits than they do from individual pellet energy. Increased chamber pressure needed to get more velocity usually opens shot patterns thus reducing killing power. Remember, "magnum" shells deliver heavier shot loads, not more velocity.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master



    M-Tecs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    4,624
    Quote Originally Posted by high standard 40 View Post
    Please explain exactly what you mean by "short shells". Are these shells shorter than 2 3/4"? Is this in a 12 ga? .

    https://www.midwayusa.com/s?userSear...temsPerPage=48

    https://www.aguilaammo.com/shotshell/

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    South Louisiana
    Posts
    677
    I'm aware of those shells. I wanted to be sure that's what the OP is talking about.

  13. #13
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Western Colorado
    Posts
    83
    Similar. At present I am using a BPI 2" receipe. They function fine in the pump (bottom eject). It seemed to me that a POSSIBLE method would be to put the 2" shell in the semi-auto chamber with a 2-3/4 in the mag in order to test function IF either the shot or powder was increased. The idea being that it would be a way of knowing when a certain pressure had been reached. It sounds like nobody has done this and I am not interested in being the first. I do understand that the pressure curve can vary greatly and at some point it is dangerous.

    That is why the question was asked and at this point, I think answered. I did hope for a more technical answer but "don't" is adequate at this point.
    Last edited by Sitzme; 09-05-2017 at 05:34 PM.

  14. #14
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Posts
    251
    Why would anyone use a "short shell" in a gun chambered for 2.75" shells ? Perhaps if you don't handload but otherwise just adjust the wad to use less shot. I load 3/4 and 7/8 oz in 2.75" shells by using the correct wads.

    My gas machines function fine with these loads as does my ancient A5. Putting in more powder is NOT a safe solution.

    If you can read, you can find lighter shot loads that work in any shotgun.

    I even have safe loads for damascus gun that have perfect bores thanks to Double Gun Journal.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master Boolit_Head's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    787
    I suspect he wants to fit more in the magazine is the impetus for the short shells.
    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

  16. #16
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Posts
    251
    1. Buy an 1897 pump.
    2. If you can't get it done with 7, you should take up golf !

  17. #17
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    39.7594 N, 84.1917 W
    Posts
    292
    i'm sure you already know about hodgdon's onine reloading data - they list data for both 2 ans 2 1/2 shells.


    http://www.hodgdonreloading.com/data/shotgun
    I'm looking for Lyman Truline Jr / 310 dies. PM me if you have any.

    Scott

    You can easily judge the character of others by how they treat those who they think can do nothing for them.

    38 Super - DOB 02/06
    Commander - DOB 02/12
    Delta Elite - DOB - 1989

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
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