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loading 38 question

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by badbowtie, Mar 28, 2007.

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  1. badbowtie

    badbowtie Member

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    I am loading 38 ammot on my lee classic turret press How do you guys set the bullet seater die. I just kept playing with it and ended up getting them to sit as far as about store bought ammo but it says in my book it should be 1.550 mine are only 1.450 is that okay for the 38 ammo. It seems like if i try to get it out to 1.550 the bullet is not going to even be in the case. Also I am using Rainier Ballistics Total Copper Jacket Bullets 38 125gr. TCJ FP bullets Is that okay to start my load at 5.0 grains like my lee book says using unique powder.
     
  2. Zullo74

    Zullo74 member

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    The over all length will depend on the bullet weight and shape you use. Most revolver bullets have a cannelure to crimp the case mouth into. Use that to set your COAL (cartridge over all length)
     
  3. Starter52

    Starter52 Member

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    5.0 grains of Unique is a safe load for the .38 Special with a 125 gr. bullet. It might kick a bit in lightweight guns, but it's safe.

    Zullo is right about the cannelure groove. If your bullet have a groove, crimp in the groove to hold the bullet in place during firing.

    Overall length is not critical in .38 revolver rounds, so don't worry too much about it. If you duplicate the length of factory loads you will be OK.

    Sometimes you have to "trial and error" to find the right seating depth. That's why I recommend every reloader buy a hammer-style bullet puller.
     
  4. WildeKurt

    WildeKurt Member

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    I start by setting the seating die on the high side and working it down until it the case rim ends up in the crimp spot. Then double check this against the 'book' It always works out somewhere between the min OAL and the max. I figure that's good.

    Don't have a book in front of me, but the 1.550 figure is maximum overall length. Each load probably has a minimum figure. Somewhere between minimum and maximum is nirvana.
     
  5. Lovesbeer99

    Lovesbeer99 Member

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    Stop what you are doing and re-read the manual. 1.155 is the MAX case length and not the suggested OAL (over all length) of the 38 special.
    Also, OAL is critical in a 38 if you exceed the Max length. Your OAL seams to be within spec, but we'd have to know more about your particular recipe.

    Be safe and re-read the data.

    Lovesbeer99 (but shoots safe)
     
  6. WildeKurt

    WildeKurt Member

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    38 special right?

    If we're talking 38 special, 1.155 is WAY to short. I'm hunkered down in a hotel room now w/o any reloading manuals, but a quick perusal of the Alliant site, they recommend a minimum OAL of 1.440 for a 125 grain JSP. I think more trouble could arise by a shorter OAL than longer (possibly creating a compressed load).
     
  7. Zullo74

    Zullo74 member

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    He said 1.550 not 1.155 ! :what:
     
  8. badbowtie

    badbowtie Member

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    I thought I was fine. Know I am ready to go to the range and try some out that I have loaded.
    Thanks
     
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