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Steel cased rounds

This is a discussion on Steel cased rounds within the Ruger Pistols forums, part of the Pistol & Revolver Forum category; I look at it this way .... when I spend considerable sums of money on a nice gun, I'm not going to feed it garbage ...


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Old March 9th, 2020, 08:33 PM   #16
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I look at it this way .... when I spend considerable sums of money on a nice gun, I'm not going to feed it garbage ammo. You won't see any steel case ammo in my range bag, ever.

Mark204, Funny you should mention 9mm ammo and straight wall cases. Lqueral is right, even though the taper is very slight. When our forefathers designed pistols and cartridges like 380 Auto, 9mm, 38 Super, 40 S&W, 10mm Auto, 45 ACP, and 30 Carb, they put a slight taper on the case and made the chambers funnel with the same angle taper. Why? They got the best of both worlds! Cartridges chamber loose until they finally reach full battery where they tighten up and make the bullet align perfectly with the bore. This helps eliminate feeding problems plus it enhances accuracy.

If you reload with the older style steel dies that have to be lubricated, you will maintain the case taper, however if you use more modern carbide dies with just a short ring of carbide, you will turn tapered cases into straight wall cases (applies to all the above previously mentioned cartridges). These cartridges still feed quite well but accuracy is typically better when the old conventional tapered sizer dies are used.

I don't particularly like to reload 9mm ammo because the cases are too small for my big mitts. When I did load 9mms, I used my Dillon RL550 with Dillon carbide dies and ended up with straight wall cartridges. That's OK because my 9mm guns are not match grade target pistols so I don't expect mouse ear groups. I'm happy if I can keep my shots within a 5" group at 15 yards off hand, standing ….. plenty good for practice. If I bench shoot with a rest, I can shrink the groups to about 2" at 15 yards. I have what's left of a case of Winchester White Box 9mms (tapered brass cases) and I can get 1" groups at 15 yards with my CZ 75B or about 1 1/2" groups at 25 yards. I have never done a head-to-head test with tapered cases versus straight wall cases (all other components being the same) but I would expect considerably better accuracy from tapered cases.




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Old March 12th, 2020, 03:57 PM   #17
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark204 View Post
One of the major issues with steel case ammunition is that it doesn’t expand and contract at the same rate a brass cartridge does. This is the reason why people complain about how dirty their AR’s chambers get when using steel. Add in the fact that 9mm is a straight wall cartridge with no taper to it, it can cause a problem. The problem is it can throw the timing of in semi auto pistols, not all, but some. It looks like you have one that takes issue with steel case. That said, don’t use it for SD.

As far as steel case ammunition being harder on extractors and barrels, maybe, but that’s another topic.
9 mm is technically a tapered casing. I said that it was straight walled once and was corrected.
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Old March 12th, 2020, 03:58 PM   #18
 
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I use only steel in my AK 47 and SKS. Everything else I use brass.
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Old March 12th, 2020, 04:31 PM   #19
 
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OP—I haven’t considered running steel cased ammo through my LC9s PRO, and Ruger apparently doesn’t endorse its use: “The RUGER® LC9s® PRO pistol is compatible with standard factory ammunition loaded to U.S. Industry Standards, including hollow-point loads loaded in brass or aluminum cases.”. That’s not to say I haven't used steel cased ammo, but I limit it to my Hi-Point carbine—seems to eat anything. Cheers.
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Old March 12th, 2020, 05:39 PM   #20
 
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I have found steel cased ammo to be problematic. These pistols are designed to use brass cases. Stick with brass for reliability.
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Old March 13th, 2020, 11:01 AM   #21
 
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I have used thousands and thousands of steel cased rounds. More in .223 than any other caliber but also 7.62x39, 7.62x54, 8MM Mauser, 45 ACP, 9mm, 7.62 TOK, 9mm Mak, and many more.

I always find it strange that nobody ever uses steel case ammo, but millions of rounds are sold.

Anyway, if ANY ammo does not work, nobody has to tell you not to use it, I mean, you can't right? Right?
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Old March 14th, 2020, 01:28 PM   #22
 
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Steel cased ammo is fine...if it works in your gun. And in your case, it doesn't. At least not very well. So brass cased ammo for you. And that's okay. Probably better for the gun over the long haul anyway.

I have fired steel cased 9mm in my semi-autos and it has worked fine, but when I tried to fire it in my S&W revolver (Model 986) it stuck in the cylinder and I couldn't eject it. That was a downer. So I don't shoot it in that gun any longer.

If you shoot thousands and thousands of rounds, eventually the steel ("bi-metal") bullets will wear the rifling faster than a copper clad bullet. Very few people will ever fire enough ammo to ever see or experience this 'problem'. As for extractor wear, the steel cased ammo will affect the extractor in a negative way sooner than will the brass cased ammo. But again, you won't "notice" this until firing thousands of rounds. Barrels and extractors are replaceable. The money 'saved' by shooting steel ammo is somewhat offset by the cost of replacement parts being needed sooner.

TO really 'see' the differences in steel vs brass ammo, this 10,000 round test done by Lucky Gunner using four AR-15s was truly interesting.
https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/bra...el-cased-ammo/
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Old March 14th, 2020, 02:53 PM   #23
 
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I used steel from Wolf in my 1911 for years. No issues. "NO" York stopped ammo buys on line. A steel case does not go into the bore, No bore damage. It does not expand as well as brass. The lacquer coating may or may not gum things up. If you want cheap go for it.
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Old March 15th, 2020, 04:48 AM   #24
 
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All of the 45 ACP ammunition produced for model 1911 pistols during World War II was steel case.
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Old March 17th, 2020, 06:27 PM   #25
 
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A couple of folks said they use steel cases in revolvers. I tried that once in my .357 and it was a problem, the empties just wouldn't come out of the cylinder using the extractor. I had to take the gun home and tap the empties out with a cleaning rod, and it took a while, they were in there tight. Never again.
I will only use steel in my AK, as it's designed to use steel.
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Old March 18th, 2020, 08:59 PM   #26
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Classic Radio99 View Post
A couple of folks said they use steel cases in revolvers. I tried that once in my .357 and it was a problem, the empties just wouldn't come out of the cylinder using the extractor. I had to take the gun home and tap the empties out with a cleaning rod, and it took a while, they were in there tight. Never again.
I will only use steel in my AK, as it's designed to use steel.
I fire some range ammo 38spl that is steel case through my Blackhawk. Never had any problems. But I would never use steel case in one of my semi-autos.
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Old March 21st, 2020, 05:14 PM   #27
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I use steel Tula and Wolf in my Yugoslavian origin AK. I figured AK’s were built to use eastern bloc, inexpensive, steel cases military rounds. I use only brass cased ammunition in everything else because I believe American, Austrian, and German (h&k) guns were designed to use brass cased rounds. Of course I could be quite wrong.
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Old March 22nd, 2020, 12:51 PM   #28
 
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I shoot a lot of steel case 9mm in my pistols that agree with it and most of mine do. It provides me more time with a pistol in my hand. If brass rounds were as economical I would buy brass case ammo.
Just as with brass ammo, some steel case rounds are better than others. I like Wolff ammo. I use it in pistols, an SKS and ARs.
I tried some revolver steel in a 357 and had problems with stuck cases so I gave that up.
FWIW, it shoots very small groups from a P226 I own.
As I stated in anothet post, my P345 hates he stuff.
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Old March 23rd, 2020, 06:52 AM   #29
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Glad to hear it works for you. I should get a box, after this current ammo situation passes, and try it. You’re absolutely right that it is much more cost effective.
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Old Yesterday, 01:05 AM   #30
 
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If you are referring to Winchester "Forged" Steel Case ammo, 9mm, I consider it to be the worst ammo I have ever had the misfortune to purchase in over 60 yrs. of shooting. Possibly the only thing worse than the ammo is Olin/Winchester customer support.
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