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  1. #1
    CigarJ is offline Junior Member
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    Empty casing as a snap cap?

    Since the only dumb question is the one not asked:
    I do a lot of dry firing to practice sighting and trigger pull. I know they say most modern firearms are ok but use snap caps if worried. So instead of snap caps could I just use a spent casing? Or is the spent primer useless in protecting the firing pin.

    On a separate note, a big thanks to all on this forum. I just acquired my first handgun a month ago and I pick up a ton of usefull tips from you seasoned folks reading through all the posts.
    Thanks
    J

  2. #2
    VAMarine's Avatar
    VAMarine is offline Administrator
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  3. #3
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
    Steve M1911A1 is offline Senior Member
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    ...Well, if you reload, you could run an empty through only the decap/resize die, so it won't stick in the pistol's chamber.
    Then, though, you'd have to cut a very small, but thick, disk of either leather or resilient plastic, and carefully seat it—and probably glue it—into the resized case's primer pocket.

    It's a lot of effort for very little reward, since snap caps aren't very expensive.

    So, instead, do what VAMarine says: Buy some snap caps!

  4. #4
    CigarJ is offline Junior Member
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    Thx for the links. Snap caps it is.

  5. #5
    talldrink's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    ...Well, if you reload, you could run an empty through only the decap/resize die, so it won't stick in the pistol's chamber.
    Then, though, you'd have to cut a very small, but thick, disk of either leather or resilient plastic, and carefully seat it—and probably glue it—into the resized case's primer pocket.
    This is similar to what I did. I made a dummy round (colored the projectile black with a sharpie marker) and filled in the primer pocket with Shoe Goo. Once it dried I trimmed it off flat with a razor blade.

  6. #6
    rex
    rex is offline Senior Member
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    A #2 pencil eraser or good silicone caulk (not RTV) also works for a cushion.As said though,snapcaps are are the best way to go.

    I believe the thread VA refered to that just happened was from what's called an extractor foward feed.The case was fired so it was chamber dimension now,and when the extractor hits the case it jambs the mouth into the chamber's headspace step before i snaps over the rim.Extractors are designed to handle some of this in emergencies but not on a normal basis-in general.

    Alot of guns will handle dry firing,but too much isn't good with an empty chamber.Reason being there's no primer to limit the pin travel.Now there's only 2 things to stop it,either the spring stacks in coil bind,or the pin bottoms in the edge of the hole.The first can break the spring or the pin,the last can take out the pin or peen the hole and cause a foward sticking pin.I've dryfired thousands of times and haven't broke one,but it does happen.I figure why push it if you don't have to.

  7. #7
    Leo's Avatar
    Leo
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    I agree on the snap caps. You can find relatively inexpensive snap caps of all calibers on Amazon and eBay.

  8. #8
    Doug B.'s Avatar
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    I do however take a lot of pride making things myself.

  9. #9
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
    Steve M1911A1 is offline Senior Member
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    Well, talldrink and Doug, I suggest that you make very sure that either the dummy's bullet is crimped-in very tightly, or that the empty case has a really good roll crimp on its mouth. I also suggest that, if the dummy includes a bullet, that you drill a few holes in the side walls of the case, just so there's no mistake.

  10. #10
    Leo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    I also suggest that, if the dummy includes a bullet, that you drill a few holes in the side walls of the case, just so there's no mistake.

  11. #11
    talldrink's Avatar
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    Steve, just curious as to why you suggest the overly tight crimp? Set back is not an issue as I'm not using this round as a gauge to reset my dies. I can see that drilling holes is just an extra safety precaution, but this round has been colored black and is kept in a storage container with all of my other dummy rounds seperate from any live rounds. Once any rounds are loaded up they are moved to another floor in my house and I would never be doing any dry fire practice during a reloading session.

  12. #12
    berettatoter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CigarJ View Post
    Thx for the links. Snap caps it is.
    That's the ticket. Snap caps are inexpensive and useful.

  13. #13
    Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by talldrink View Post
    Steve, just curious as to why you suggest the overly tight crimp? Set back is not an issue...
    Every time a dummy cartridge is loaded, and especially from the pistol's magazine, you will add to the possibility of bullet setback.
    If the bullet of the dummy gets shoved back into its case, it could expand the case enough to cause extraction difficulties.
    Although this is not a normal occurrence, it does happen.
    Therefore, it seems to me to be prudent insurance to deeply crimp the bullet into the case. (And maybe taper-crimp it too.)

    There are black-colored live rounds in the world, you know.
    If you drill holes in the case, they are both visual and tactile reminders.
    If there ain't no holes, you're gonna have a "BANG!"
    If you disbelieve me, tell me about it after you've destroyed the TV.

  14. #14
    talldrink's Avatar
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    Yep, and that's why you keep live rounds and them separate. Safety is simple and you never take anything for granted. Even with any engineered safety device/procedure that humans come up with, we are just that. Human. You can mark it, color it, drill holes, hang signage with blinking lights and a constant audible instruction to it and there will still be those who will fail at executing simple safety protocol.

  15. #15
    45
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    Don't forget Murphey law anything that can go wrong will go wrong

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