Bullet setback - myth or reality

This is a discussion on Bullet setback - myth or reality within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I've been reading about bullet setback and would like people's opinions on this subject. Is setback a real concern with factory ammo or is it ...

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Thread: Bullet setback - myth or reality

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    Bullet setback - myth or reality

    I've been reading about bullet setback and would like people's opinions on this subject. Is setback a real concern with factory ammo or is it more of an issue with reloads? Will bullet setback occur if I'm loading and reloading the same ammo day after day? I use Hornady Critical Defense ammunition in my EDC (Glock 30 SF) and after several months I am not measuring any setback. I'd appreciate links to any articles that are published on the subject from reliable sources.
    Ben

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    VIP Member Array farronwolf's Avatar
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    Yes it is a reality depending on ammo/gun and other factors.

    Why would there be a differnce in factory versus reloaded ammo? Blaser Brass 45 acp is terrible with setback in my DW 1911.

    I don't need to read an arrticle about it, since I have experienced it first hand.
    Just remember that shot placement is much more important with what you carry than how big a bang you get with each trigger pull.
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    Distinguished Member Array claude clay's Avatar
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    setback and the opposit with some revolvers. warnings using 110gr in some ultra light revolvers and the problem becomes
    cylender lock up caused by the unfired bullets moving foward out of their cases.
    revolvers are different than semis in that regard. but set back in a magazine fed gun is a real issue with ammo
    factory or handmade.

    357 SIG and 40 S&W are two of the worst ( best?) examples of commen calibers subject to setback.
    the sig cause the neck is so short so the neck tension has less area than say, a 9mm and the 40
    cause the recoil impulse is rather sharp. it is desogned to achieve velocity in only 3.5" and a 1/10"
    of bullet setback can double case pressure.
    safest to add a fairly strong taper crimp with these two.
    same for those few who re-load 7.62 x 25
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    I don't see where there's much room for myth here. As mentioned, some guns and ammo are worse than others.

    If the round isn't crimped, my LCP will setback the bullet likes it's on a press, every time.

    As far as Glocks, I've observed that my G19 will tend to setback hollow-points (crimped or not), where the G30 and G26 tend to chamber them repeatedly without affecting them much. Setback is just something to be aware of and watch out for.
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    I have never experienced any setback in my ammo but I do switch out ammo that has been chambered more than 3 times. I don't want to find out about setback the hard way.
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    VIP Member Array zonker1986's Avatar
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    reality.
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    everyone above beat me to everything I was going to say

    I'd also like to add....we got a bulletin yesterday at training/qualification where an officer in another state experienced a fail to fire on duty JHP ammo at annual qualification.
    After investigation it was found that he took his duty pistol home each night after work and unloaded it. Throughout the year, each night he unloaded, then loaded again the next day. So over the course of a year 2 rounds were cycled--unloaded, next one chambered next day, previously ejected round put back on top of mag, and this was repeated with the same 2 cartridges over and over.
    What was found to happen on the round that failed to fire was the primer suffered what can be thought of as setback in a certain way. It had worked its way forward deeper into the cartridge which caused the firing pin to not hit hard enough to fire. All the other rounds in his mags (except the other round that had been cycled) as well as all the other officer's fired just fine.
    Just something else to think about when loading/unloading.
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    Member Array old guy 2's Avatar
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    I have several autos that I load & unload a lot and the only one that sets the bullet back is my Kahr CW40.

    John

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    The individual firearm has MUCH to do with bullet set back. It all depends on how the cartridge feeds in any given semi-automatic.
    If a particular firearm feeds smoothly and easily then the same round could be re-chambered 100 times and never suffer any bullet set-back.

    The answer is: "it just depends"

    Some semi handguns will set back bullets of a certain bullet nose profile (possibly one particular style of hollowpoint) and NOT ever set back hardball.
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    VIP Member Array Yoda's Avatar
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    I haven't had a problem probably because my gun is really broken in and smooth and my carry ammo gets fired occasionally. Even though i may unload/reload the same shell a few times I will be shooting at a turtle or snake or rat before it gets bad. I have manually slide a round into the chamber and I don't feel any resistance that might lead to setback, perhaps my old gun is really broken in good.
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    You should not re-chamber the same round over and over, if anything rotate them with others.

    Shoot older ammo up because gun powder will break down with time and movement and becomes dust and will have higher pressures and can cause KB's .

    Date the boxes when you buy them and shoot the older stuff up first

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    Distinguished Member Array claude clay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QKShooter View Post
    The individual firearm has MUCH to do with bullet set back. It all depends on how the cartridge feeds in any given semi-automatic.
    If a particular firearm feeds smoothly and easily then the same round could be re-chambered 100 times and never suffer any bullet set-back.

    The answer is: "it just depends"

    Some semi handguns will set back bullets of a certain bullet nose profile (possibly one particular style of hollowpoint) and NOT ever set back hardball.
    to a degree, yes

    the sig c-3 and a H&K p7 feed from a magazine that is very high--allowing the cartrage to be stripped and feed without its bullet touching the top or the chamber.
    but--the bullet still goes from at rest to full spped to slamed stoped almost instantly.
    what the works out to in physics regards gravities i dont't know--but its real high

    this serves to stress the neck tension.
    and if a primer can get pushed deeper ( new to me but very undertandable) imagine the forces at work on a very much more massive bullet.

    -------
    i instruct that if you have to unload every night to rotate the top 2 for 4 days and than put them at the bottom of the magazine.
    that means buying a box of 20 every month or so and gets rather expensive.
    better to lock that gun up than off load it.
    of course its each according to their needs.
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    I've never noticed it in any of my guns and I do check for it before reloading a previously chambered round. I'll check that round against the others in the magazine and look for any visual differences. I usually rechamber a different round and put the previous chambered round back in the magazine. I don't do this too many times before I light off the whole bunch anyway. My glock 26 will chamber most rounds I use very smoothly even if I slowly ease the slide forward. My smaller guns like my pf9 and lcp will not and seem to be more ratchety and need the slide to build some momentum and slam the round home. I'm sure these guns are more likely to cause a setback issue, but have not noticed it even in them.
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    Distinguished Member Array claude clay's Avatar
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    you can check and measure but the time a bullet gets pushed back may be the time it is in the gun

    and how are you going to measure that?

    ---with a pencil if you have marked its proper length for a know good round.
    than if it goes past that mark, its set back.
    but thats no guarentee for the other rounds in the mag that have been through the gun before.
    Be aware, be deliberate in your actions and be accurate.
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    claude clay

    OK "Bullet set-back" is when the bullet is pushed back into the cartridge case. I am certain that you are already aware of that fact.

    Semi auto pistols typically head space on the cartridge mouth.

    So..........when this happens (as you have stated above) ~ "but--the bullet still goes from at rest to full spped to slamed stoped almost instantly"

    That action would not result in bullet set-back as the cartridge slams into the chamber.

    AKA the cartridge case is stopped suddenly and (if anything) the actual bullet would continue to travel forward out of the cartridge case (not be set back) but, typically the bullet/projectile cannot travel further out of the cartridge case because it contacts the rifling that begins right where the barrel chamber ends.

    In order for the bullet to be set back into the cartridge case...it needs to slam into the frame feed ramp...get hung up on the frame feed ramp barrel ramp juncture or....forcefully hit the barrel chamber roof during the feed cycle.

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