.32 S&W cartridge black powder loading question

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Gaucho Gringo

Sep 10, 2006
Vancouver, WA
I have 5 old revolvers and one cartridge conversion cylinder for my repro 1849 that are .32 S&W, all but two are for the short. I am going to load some BP cartridges for them. I have both short and long cases. In doing a comparison on case length with my factory ammo that is also both short and long I discovered that the loaded shorts are exactly the same overall length as the bare long case. I then took my .32 lead wadcutter bullets and found that by seating a wadcutter bullet flush with the mouth of a long case it left the same case powder volume as the factory loaded short. Since the case length and powder volume are for all intentional purposes the same, can anyone see any problems with loading the long cases with BP and a flush seated wadcutter and shooting them in the short guns. The only thing that I can think of is the WC bullet is 15 grains heaver which might raise the pressure a little. Anybody have any thoughts? Thank you.
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I don't think there would be a problem. Internal ballistics is all about case volume. How much powder will fit into the case with the bullet seated. A deep seated bullet eats up the Long case's volume, essentially transforming it into a Short case. I've done the same thing with .357 Mag cases - turning them into .38 Specials.
The only issue would be the length of the chamber. Looking at images of .32S&W ammo it has a shoulder to the case. So the chamber should have a matching shoulder that limits the length of the casing that you can insert. So it's likely that the guns chambered in .32S&W short will not accept the longer casings even if they are loaded with flush ended wadcutter bullets. The casing mouth will hit the chamber shoulder that steps down to the throat area before the rim seats.

Sort of the same idea where we can't chamber .357Mag cases into a .38Spl cylinder for this same reason.

So even though I can see where the power of the load will be safe the gun simply won't let you chamber the longer casing in the short chambers.
i dont see a problem i loaded up some with a friend to plink with

i did some research on the internet and you may even find that the 32 sw is
compatable in the first place if i remember right after finding 32 sw short
and reloading with black we could have just used the much more common 32 sw

check the cyl for signs someone has reamed them out crudely with a drill bit

read this old thread from THR


Old Fuff seemed to be very knowledgable maybee he can chime in
The correct cartridge nomenclature for the shorter cartridge is .32 S&W and for the longer cartridge is .32 S&W Long. There is no .32 S&W Short. If the gun is chambered for the S&W it shouldn't accept the long, not as we chamber guns today. However if the cylinder is bored through as many were in the early cartridge days it might accept the Long and then your premise would be valid.
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