Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by ANATION, Feb 27, 2021.
Lots of people here that know a lot more than I will be along to help.
You can’t put enough bandaids on a small bullet to make it work very well.
Yep. I ran a cast 180s at just shy of 2000 fps before I got the faintest hint of leading.
This was a 20" barrel with lil gun.
I abandoned that load for H110 at just over 1900.
My Blackhawk leaded everything until I reamed the cylinder to fit a .358 bullet.
For .38 it’s 4.5 gr Unique with the same bullet.
Neither of these have leaded up my .38 or .357 guns so far.
Over the past years I've blended up several different batches of ally, tested hundreds of bullets in several calibers both solids and HPs and found that the same alloy that works great in one caliber is sorely wrong to use in another. I've used one alloy almost exclusively in my Redhawk 45 Colt with over a hundred plus rounds thru the barrel. Same alloy in my 41 only took 4 rounds to eliminate the grooves of the rifling.
I will say that 1000fps is easily achieved in the 357. I've used AA-9 to run upwards of 1350'ish with no issues using a blended alloy as well as straight clip on wheel weights. I size to .358 and use Carnuba Red lube or powder coat. You can read about some of it here,
Slower powders are more forgiving where pressure is concerned having more of an initial push than slap so to speak. Some are better than others due to the wider band of the load range.
Hope that helps
The biggest leading issues in a revolver can come from improperly sized cylinder throats, as BFH mentioned, in his Blackhawk. Ruger has a reputation for irregular cylinder throats. Having them reamed to 1) the same size, and 2) a size for a specific bullet can work wonders.
As was stated above, "fit is king" with lead. That's first and foremost. Other variables include powder speed, type of lubricant or coating, flat base vs. concave, combustion temperature, length of barrel, etc.
Hope this helps.
The real issue with lead/cast bullets is the commercial mfg's and the junk they put out on the market. Couple that with this:
Optimum BHN = PSI / (1422 x .90)
Nothing could be further than the truth!!!!
I've been casting bullets since 85/86??? & have no problems running 8/9bhn bullets +/- 1200fps/25,000psi. 11/12bhn bullets +/- 2000fps/35,000spi & 14bhn bullets +/- 2600fps/50/000psi.
Read this on another website and it couldn't be truer. "The statement fit is king has been used so much it has become the court jester!!!"
And yes “fit is still king” be it jester or not!
I can not do this with commercially available Boolits in MY Ruger BH
I have, and I do. I don't cast my own... I'm at the mercy of what I can find commercially. Having said that, I load, or have loaded, generic commercial cast in everything from 9mm and .38, to .41 and .45 pistol, .308/.348/.45-70... at Magnum and rifle velocities, respectively. It's not as hard as one might think... and even in esoteric things like MicroGroove barrels. My Marlin 1894 in .41MAG has an MG barrel, and I've driven cheapo cast to 1700+fps without problems.
You don't need -- nor do you want -- anything harder that Lyman#2 alloy (BN~15),
You want that deformability (you need that deformability) to grab the rifling w/o skittering down the barrel.
Once you hit 18,000 psi, however, I do advise gas-checked bases and thin-film ALOX.
(Unless powder-coated -- then all bets are off and then I've shot pure lead up to 25,000psi)
I have pushed wadcutters to around 1,500 fps out of a 6" 686.
None of my regular loads lead and they all give good accuracy.
I use tumble lube for low power loads.
I use powder coat for mid range and full power loads.
My successful full power loads include 7 Tcu, 300 BO, 30 Herrett, 327 Fed, 9mm, 357 Mag, 357 Max, 357AR Max, 44 Mag. The 357AR Max has good loads that exceed 2000 fps in a 16.25" gun.
coated bullets from Missouri, SNS, Bayou, etc.,....or bullets I cast and powder coat with eastwwood or smokes powder coat.
as already stated, size/fitting is key, and if you get leading, you can clean it out quickly with a LEWIS LEAD REMOVER or a CHOR-BOY copper kitchen scrubber wrapped around an old cleaning brush.
Any velocity, because you've neglected throat fit, forcing cone necking, bore fit, bore finish, bullet lube (quality & quantity) or coating, powder and crimp effect on obturation, and gas checking.
And these days, with commercial cast bullets alloyed for shipment durability, they're as likely to be too hard for 1000fps, rather than too soft.
I load full house 158gr .357Mag into the 1400fps range, with minimal and sustainable leading. I also HiTek or powdercoat the bullets, and I've honed throats and firelapped bores as necessary.
When I did have lead buildup I tried the old remedy of shooting jacketed bullets to strip out the lead fouling. It might work, but it was slow going and I resorted to an overnight soak in a basic cleaner (probably hoppes) and the lead cleaned out fairly well.
Use the red ones and reality comes to light. Use the blue ones and you can remain blissfully ignorant.
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