Favorite cowboy load?

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Dustbowl, Feb 8, 2020.

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  1. Dustbowl

    Dustbowl Member

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    Getting into cowboy shooting and looking to work up a good lead bullet 38/357 load? Any pet bullets or loads? Looking to order from Missouri bullets or RMR.
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2020
  2. SlowFuse

    SlowFuse Member

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    I'm not into any cowboy action shooting, but MBC's "38 match" 158 SWC shoot well for me.

    I haven't tried the coated, I dislike the way it smells. I still buy plain lead in pretty much everything from them.

    HP-38 was easy to find a good shooting load with and is what I use the most of, works well in the middle range of Hodgdons data... CFE Pistol and Titegroup get a nod as well.
     
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  3. ReloaderFred

    ReloaderFred Member

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    My wife and I use 105 gr. FP for the revolvers and 125 gr. RNFP for the rifles. I load them with Bullseye, but there are many good powders that will work. With the lighter weights, I get many more bullets per pound of alloy, since I cast all our bullets, and we go through roughly 10,000 rounds of .38 per year in SASS matches.

    Hope this helps.

    Fred
     
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  4. Random 8

    Random 8 Member

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    I'm shooting the 125 ACME TC over 4.5 gr HP-38. This is hotter than you need although well within .38Spl standard pressures, but I also got good accuracy at lower charges. I'm running them through .357 wheelguns and a single shot rifle at longer range targets up to 75 yards so the extra pop is desireable for me. This bullet has a relatively "sharp" flat point which is slightly rounded on the edges, so should be lever gun compatible. I'm shooting the standard cast/lubed as I don't like the burnt brake pad smell of HiTek, brings back bad memories of being stuck on the side of the road with locked up airbrakes on my semi!

    I also had a small amount of titegroup to use up at one point, and I remember getting good accuracy with this bullet. Don't remember the charge on those, but they were very light.
     
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  5. J-Bar

    J-Bar Member

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    Things are a bit more simple if you use the same bullet for both rifle and revolvers. Truncated cone or RNFP bullets feed in the rifle more reliably than semi-wadcutters. Most cowboys use bullets of 125 grains or less to reduce recoil for faster split times, and light powder charges for the same reason. Titegroup, Clays, Trailboss, HP-38, Unique and Bullseye, are popular among the competitors.

    When I am not using black powder I will usually be shooting a home cast 125 grain lead bullet lubed with Lee Liquid Alox over 3.2 grains of Titegroup, in Starline .38 Special brass and a Federal primer.

    Hodgdon Powder Company lists a number of cowboy action loads:

    http://www.survivorlibrary.com/library/hodgdon_2002_blackpowder_reloaders_manual.pdf
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2020
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  6. J-Bar

    J-Bar Member

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    PS:

    Don’t buy or load ANYTHING until you have visited a couple of matches. You don’t know what kind of cowboy you are yet! ;)
     
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  7. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I completely agree. You will use different bullets and weights for different disciplines.

    Go watch a few matches and tell anyone willing to listen you are new. If they are anything like most Cowboys I know your will get more help and information than you will know what to do with.

    Good luck and have fun.
     
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  8. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

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    I just want pictures of you and your gear after a years competition. By then you will be able to channel your true cowboy to the events.:thumbup: You will have a blast.:D
     
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