Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Did I make a mistake (.38spl wadcutter load)

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by H1500308, Mar 10, 2008.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. H1500308

    H1500308 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    203
    Loaded 50 of 148g LWC using the Lee Dipper, Unique powder, and the reloading data that came with the dies.

    Afterwards, I looked at the Unique website and it listed a lighter charge for the 148g lwc.

    Are these loads safe to shoot?
     
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2007
    Messages:
    59,082
    Location:
    Eastern KS
    Solid base or hollow-base wad-cutter?

    What do you think you put in them with the dipper?

    What gun are you shooting them in, .38 or .357?

    Anyway, you are good to go with a .38 Spl. gun & solid-base WC anywhere from 3.8 to 5.0 grains of Unique, although leading might be a problem at the higher charge.

    rcmodel
     
  3. ojibweindian

    ojibweindian Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Messages:
    2,300
    Location:
    Union Grove, Alabama
    You're probably okay if you will be shooting these reloads out of a L-Frame Smith and Wesson, or a Ruger GP-100.

    What sized dipper did you use? Is it the one that comes with the .38 Special Lee die set?
     
  4. SASS#23149

    SASS#23149 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2003
    Messages:
    1,868
    Location:
    Washougal,Wa
    Load data in various books almost never agree.
    How close was it exactly ?
     
  5. H1500308

    H1500308 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    203
    Sorry, I left out some important info.

    Gun is a J-Frame .38spl S&W

    I used the .5cc dipper from the Lee Set.

    Solid base wadcutter bullet

    I'll weigh a few dipper charges tonight but it normally pulls around 4.5 Unique with each pull through the bowl
     
  6. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2007
    Messages:
    59,082
    Location:
    Eastern KS
    That should be perfectly safe with a 148 grain bullet.

    I shoot a lot of .38 Spl. 158 grain loads with 5.0 grains Unique and its a good load in a J or a K S&W.

    If you've already got scales, you might want to investigate getting a powder measure though!
    I never did trust dippers too much!

    rcmodel
     
  7. H1500308

    H1500308 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2007
    Messages:
    203
    Measured a charge

    Measured a few pulls from the dipper and was pulling about 4.1, 4.2 Unique.
     
  8. Virginian

    Virginian Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2003
    Messages:
    4,039
    Location:
    Williamsburg, Virginia
    I think you are good to go. I loaded King Kong shotshells and hot rifle loads for decades and used homemade dippers for powder because they were more accurate than the Mec Reloader thrown charges and I didn't own a measure. Also made dippers for nickel plated shot out of 20 gauge AA casings. Dippers can be very accurate if you concentrate on a consistent methodology. Of course a powder measure is soooo much easier.
     
  9. novaDAK

    novaDAK Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,030
    I don't normally bring up old threads, but I loaded up about 50 cartridges which I believe to be the same as the OP stated. I used the .5 CC dipper that was included in the Lee die set with Unique and 148gr Hard Cast DEWC bullets. Crimped into the groove on the bullet. Hopefully I can get to the range this week and shoot some of 'em. BTW this is my first shot at reloading but I had a 'veteran' reloader helping me out since I was using his press :)
     
  10. Steve C

    Steve C Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Messages:
    4,696
    4.5grs of Unique will be fine for a bevel base or solid base wad cutter. With a solid base WC you can go up to 5.0grs according Lyman. A 4.5gr load should push the bullet out a 4" barrel at around 850 fps around 750 fps for a 2".

    Do not use this much Unique with a hollow base wad cutter as the pressure may be too high causing skirt separation resulting in a bore obstruction. HBWC loads using Unique is generally around 3.8grs or less.
     
  11. novaDAK

    novaDAK Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,030
    I've heard that one before. The main reason I chose to use DEWCs is because I could use them in both .38 and .357mag, and I got them from a local shop at a good price since they're cast by a company in-state. I got these hard cast bullets for the same price I would have paid for swaged HBWCs from Midway including shipping.

    Edited to add: This load should also be fine in my 1988 mfg. S&W 64-5 then as well since I normally shoot 158gr plated flat points @ around 800fps so a 148gr cast bullet at 850 should be no problem.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2009
  12. novaDAK

    novaDAK Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,030
    Got to shoot the reloads today. Very accurate and recoil on par with the 158gr standard pressure loads I normally buy. A bit smokey though but that's not an issue for me.
     
  13. Floppy_D

    Floppy_D Member In Memoriam

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Messages:
    2,156
    Location:
    NAS Pensacola
    Part of that could be the bullet lube, and that's half the fun of cast bullets. Sometimes I double lube just to smoke the place up. :D
     
  14. novaDAK

    novaDAK Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,030
    Didn't bother me since I figured it was a combination of the Unique powder and the bullet lube on the cast bullets. I think the guy next to me moved another lane away from me after a few minutes :D
     
  15. jjohnson

    jjohnson Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2005
    Messages:
    1,181
    Location:
    Rochester, Minnesoviet
    Veteran Reloader Help

    Well, glad to hear you're getting some help from an experienced loader.

    It's all too easy to make mistakes handloading - if your friend still has all his fingers and both eyes, he should be helping with the safety stuff, too. Never take loading lessons from a guy nicknamed "Stumpy." :eek:

    I guess this is a good case in point - minor mistake, not dangerous, but worth doing a "post mortem" on. I've been loading for nearly 40 years and still find a dud now and then - :scrutiny: - which is annoying and on a couple of occasions, loaded handgun ammo with a double charge :what: which is more than annoying - it's "exciting." :what:

    I'm not picking on you or anybody else - it's great that you figured you should get some advice here or otherwise.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page