Reloading and Ammunition
Not only is having the right equipment one of the most important parts of shooting your very best, but you also need the right ammunition for your MCP pistol(s).
MCP prefers that shooters of our 45ACP pistols use Brian Zins’ “Gunny Zins” match ammunition, which is available directly through MCP. This ammunition uses 185gr Nosler match jacketed hollow point, which is designed to shoot through Schuemann AET (Accuracy Enhancement Technology) or Gain Twist Barrels; the barrels used by MCP.
However, if you prefer to reload your own ammunition for your MCP pistol, we’ve got some tips and tricks that we’ve developed along the way.
NOTE: Since the subject matter posted in our reloading section deals with ammunition that is made BY THE READER of this page, no warranty is implied or expressed with information contained here-in. Reloading is INHERENTLY DANGEROUS and you can be KILLED if you are not experienced and do not follow proper safety procedures. If you are NOT an experienced reloader, find a credible, well experienced, and reliable person that can teach you the basics before you use ANY information provided on this webpage! If in doubt, just purchase Brian Zins’ match ammunition, and leave the loading to him!!
There are several types of good reloading presses out in the market. Finding one that’s “better” than the rest can be a difficult thing to determine. What we do find to be typical is that if you spend more money, you generally end up with a better press, BUT you also end up with a more complicated system. More complicated translates to “the user needs to be mechanically inclined.” We’ll talk more about that later.
Tip: Stay away from any press made out of aluminum.
The Single Stage Reloading Press:
A single stage reloading press is a press that preforms one action each time you crank the handle of the press.
The downside is that you need to pull the handle for EACH cartridge (bullet) you wish to produce FOUR times. The upside is that single stage presses are very accurate. For handgun reloading there are 4 dies that need to be used:
1) Full length resizer and decapping (depriming) die
2) Expander die
3) Match bullet seating die
4) Taper crimp die
These dies are very important, but the MOST important of the 4 dies are resizer and the seating die. If you do nothing else, spend the money on a good match seating die. Match seating dies hold the bullet centered so that it can be properly inserted into the mouth of the brass cartridge.
Single stage presses that we tend to like are made by:
Single stage presses are not the fastest, but they do yield the best result when paired we a MATCH quality powder measure. For the LEAST amount of money, single stage presses tend to be the most cost effective setup, but are also the slowest.
Micrometer Match Seating dies we like:
Semi-Progressive Reloading Presses:
A semi-progressive reloading press is also typically called a manual indexing press. There are two types of these presses. The first type is a press that is basically a semi progressive press (see below) that does not automatically advance the shell to the next station. The user manually moves a round shell plate that is exactly the same as one found in a fully progressive press each time after they pull the handle. The second type uses a semi-circle type configuration (an arc) that the user moves the shell to each station manually or a turret that is manually moved by the user above the shell station. This is very similar to a single stage press, but you perform the four functions that normally happen on a single stage press in the same instance; you still need to pull the handle four times, but you produce a completed cartridge at the end of every four pulls of the handle. This second type of Semi-Progressive reloader is VERY accurate and can be used effectively for rifle and pistol cartridges.
Example of the first type of a Semi-Progressive indexing system would be something like the:
– RCBS Piggy Back III / IV, which sits on top of an RCBS Rockchucker to convert it to a semi-progressive reloader
– The Dillon Precision RL-550, which is similar to the RCBS Piggy Back III
(Both of which are warrantied for life at the time of writing this.)
Examples of the second type of manually indexing system would be the extremely well built:
– Ponsness/Warren Metallic II semi-progressive single stage rifle / pistol reloader or ANY “turret” style single stage reloading press
– Ponsness/Warren Metal-Matic P-200 semi-progressive press, which is an advanced turret style press
Semi-Progressive Presses are probably the easiest to setup presses, which also provide the user with the decent reloading speeds at a medium cost factor.
We can’t say enough good things about the Ponsness/Warren Metallic II; it’s a VERY well made unit and provides nearly flawless reloads. Also, it’s not difficult to setup for those people who are not mechanically inclined.
Progressive Reloading Presses:
Fully automatic progressive reloading presses are the king of the reloading world. The basic fully progressive press pumps out one bullet each time you pul the handle and can be configured to do everything for you. However, you need to invest a significant amount of cash and TIME into properly maintaining and configuring these units. The advantage is that they produce a large number of rounds in a short amount of time. The flip side is that you need to have the units precisely setup and this means that you need to be mechanically inclined. Out of all of the units (Single Stage, Semi-Progressive, and Progressive) the progressive units require a keen attention to detail, as you can just as easily make a large number of bad rounds as you can flawless rounds. Never the less, you can really ramp up your reloading with a well configured and outfitted progressive reloader.
Fully progressive reloaders we like are:
– Hornady Lock and Load
– Dillon RL-650
– Dillon RL-1050
Reloading Tips for 45 ACP
Tip: Use a 45 Long Colt resizing die on your 45 ACP brass. Have you ever noticed that 45 ACP resizing dies tend to leave the case wall narrower than the base of the case? This results in the upper part of the finally assembled cartridge being the proper size when the bullet is seated, then a slight indentation until you get down to the base. Since a 45 Long Colt is .472 inches verses the .469 inches of a 45 ACP resizing die, this issue is eliminated.
Tip: Always purchase CARBIDE resizing dies. If you don’t, you’ll find that you wear out steel resizing dies in short order, or that you’ll need to lubricate you pistol brass to prevent wear of the steel die.
Tip: Consider purchasing a decent bullet feeder if you have a progressive reloader.
Tip: Save yourself quality control issues and purchase Redding Competition Match Bullet Seating dies. These are probably the BEST bullet seating dies you can get.
Tip: DON’T USE POWDER MEANT FOR SHOTGUNS IN YOUR PISTOL LOADS! It turns out that most of these powders leave abrasive soot behind after firing. This WILL cause wear on our pistols. Consider using
Tip: Get a GOOD powder measure. If you are planning on using a manual powder measure, then we recommend, in order: Harrel, Redding, RCBS, Hornady, and Lyman measures. All of these can be purchased with micrometer adjustments.
Tip: Our favorite automatic powder measure is the Dillon charge bar type measure.
CCI primers tend to be harder than Federal and Winchester primers. We
recommend that you use Federal or Winchester primers in revolvers if you
shoot a revolver in bull’s eye matches. The reason for this is that
harder primers tend ware harder on the firing pins on revolvers, which
tends to not be an issue with auto pistols.