Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Reloaded Ammo Causing Feed Issues? Clear that Jam!

One of the most common malfunctions I see in competition shooting is a bulged case on a reloaded cartridge that fails to go into the chamber of the gun. This is a simple problem that can remedied with a case gauge and checking your ammo before using them in a match or at the range. The case is typically swelled so large that in the reloading process the case does not return to spec even with the resizing die. In my case shown in the video, the case was from a 9mm open gun where pressures are much higher than typical 9mm. The spent case therefore exhibits extreme swelling all the way down towards the rim. Most reloading dies are unable to resize all the way to the rim. I must have picked up the brass at the range and tossed it in with my own when I reloaded it for my Glock. You may also run into this problem when purchasing reloaded ammo from the people at the gunshows.


  1. Nathan, excellent tip on how to clear that particular malfunction.

    Before I learned to gauge my reloads, I never ran into that particular malfunction, but I did have a few swelled cases which WOULD go into battery on my M&P but would not eject after firing (extractor wouldn't remove it) and required a squib rod and hammer to remove the stuck case from the chamber.

    Bottom line is you have to gauge your reloads, because it really sucks to lose a match, or placing at a match, because you have a failure to extract which can't be quickly resolved.

  2. They have bulge buster kits for "glocked" brass in .40 S&W. My understanding is that they are basically the bullet punch from a lee sizer kit paired with the carbide ring base portion of the lee factory crimp die. I'd bet you could make the same kit in 9mm from those parts.

    None of the 9mm I've loaded was hot enough to ring the brass like you've shown, but I have had some rounds stick at the front from a fat bullet bulging the case a few times. I 'm not sure whether I could have cleared the jam as shown. I ended up placing the front of the slide next to the barrel against some wood and then striking as you showed to clear it. I'll try your way next time.