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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been saving up grey AA Handicap hulls for about a year. Yesterday, I reloaded 400 once-fired hulls and had a significant number of bad crimps...15 out of 400, and some were the worst crimps I have ever seen...marginally shootable. One wouldn't hold shot. Normally, I reload AA red hulls, STS's and Gun Clubs. I might get one marginal crimp per 100, but always shootable. I use a Ponsness Warren 800+, about 5 years old, with the original pre-crimp and final crimp fixtures. The problem occurs in the pre-crimp station. My observation was that with some of the grey AA hulls the open end had lost its previous crimp "fix" and was almost as round as the hull itself. I also wonder if the hull was of a less stiff material, and would crush rather than take a proper crimp. My feeling is that those hulls were that too open and round, at the precrimp station they were crushed rather than taking the pre-crimp. Have any others had this problem, and why are the AA Handicap hulls the culprit?

WNCRob
 

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Bad AA HCP Crimps??

Maybe they were exposed to sun light or some chemical that affected the plastic. HMB
 

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Could be several issues. But first make sure your crimp starter is not bent or damaged. Instead of a steady/quick pull downward, try a softer/longer pull to bottom out. Obviously giving more time to form.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Smooth crimp starter? I'll look into that. These hulls are stored in large plastic tubs in my garage, just like all the other hulls, but for some reason, many have lost their "crimp memory"...other hulls don't, at least to the extent these have. I reloaded 300 Gun Clubs the day before, with only one slightly deformed crimp.

Thanks for your comments.

WNCRob
 

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I agree with Setterman I have the same problem. That is what i found that happens. I have the 800+ also
 

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The gray hulls don't crimp as well as the red AA's. I have always assumed the problem is the gray dye used to color the plastic . The crimps will mushroom out or the crimp will partially open. I avoid using the gray hulls. Don't think length variation is the problem, Rem hulls vary even more. I use a PW Platinum.
 

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It is not the dye collor. It's a combination or variation of length, and the tapered base in the hull. The powder/wad placement of your loader has to be perfect to get a good crimp. The DRA-12 wad which is shorter than the standard AA wad helps significantly. If you load only AA Hulls you can tweak your crimp stations to close the crimp tighter, but you'll get spiral crimps with the STS hulls at that setting. Crimp the AA's too tight and you'll crush your hull.

I load 20.6 gr of Green Dot, and 19.2 gr of Int Clays quite often, and have no problem with tight crimps, but I may have a small hole in the crimp in 25% of the AAHS hull reloads...which is due to length difference in AA hulls.

With STS hulls, my reloads look perfect. MEC 9000H.
 

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Setterman , If your explanation is correct then why no trouble with the red AA's?The only difference is the gray color.
It is only the gray hulls that won't crimp well. As for length variation, I adjust the crimp for the shortest AA's and the rest will be fine, including Rem hulls. And yes, you will get spiral crimps with STS hulls, but they come like that from the factory because some are way too long.

Taper is what crushes the AA's. I have not crushed any since I backed off completely on the taper years ago.
 

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Never heard reds loaded better. I load reds too. Same issues.

Maybe others will chime in.

Reloading issues are why they sell for less than STS's.
 

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<blockquote><I>"Make sure the crimp starter can freely rotate so it can index on the case mouth properly."</I></blockquote>This is one of the concerns that's eliminated by switching to the smooth cone starter. The cone will replicate whatever crimp was last applied to the hull without indexing. I have used nothing else for years.

Keller
 

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Rob I agree the grey AA's are thinner and more easily deformed than the reds.They can also be longer and catch on the wad carrier and cause the wad to enter the hull at a incotrrect angle.
 

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I load with two 800B's and get the same result with both. There is nothing wrong with the loader, settings, or the load. I have several thousand old style AA, both red and silver and can pick out the ones that will get a crummy crimp like Rob is talking about. Look at the ends and they are, like stated, round with little or no "pucker" or fold lines. The crimp starter goes down but the hull doesn't start to fold, just does dumb things and looks like crap. I sort them out, load them last, on the ground they go. They look bad but shoot ok.
 

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If the grey hulls have lost (ie shot out) their "memory" it happened when you fired the factory load, that used to happen when the AAs 1st came out & we couldn't get the 1 pc wads. We tried loading them without a shot sleeve & took the crimp right out of them.

A cone starter will only make your problem worse. Look for the old crimp lines on those few hulls & turn the hull to match your 8 pt. starter the 1st time you reload them, they will usually regain their memory after that, also raise the starter slightly so you don't start to crush the hull at that station, a cone starter will work fine if the hull still has it's "memory" otherwise it will make it just squash the mouth closed & look terrible. Quite frequently when they crimp all gnarled up like they will blow out a segment of the crimp. The greys should load the same as the reds, once you get your reloader reset for the AAHS hulls it will still load Rem. CF & Federal hulls just fine. Ross Puls
 

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At half time fo the J.V. game (Ohio/Micigan), I measured 10 once fired grey AAHS hulls and 10 once fired STS hulls. The AAHS are consistantly .040 shorter. Sometimes as much as 1/16" shorter than the STS. Got to make a difference when trying to close a crimp.

Don't have any new red hulls to measure right now.

Maybe we'll figure this out before the Varsity game (The Irish and USC).
 

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Ross, I have no problem crimping shells. For some reason, the gray hulls will simply not retain the crimp. Like crimping wet rag. No problem with the red hulls.

This is a subject that Pat Ireland and I discussed several years ago. He also thought that the gray AA's did not crimp well. I am convinced that the gray plastic is inferior.

Setterman , simply adjust the crimp starter for the shorter shells, no problem.
 

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I get good crimps on AAHS hulls, and great crimps on STS. No problem here. With my powders, the shorter DRA-12 wad is the way to go on AAHS.
 
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