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matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) Reader
9/16/20 8:23 a.m.

In reply to ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) :

Double check your loading manual, but your listed starting loads for revolver loads should be based on a factory style roll crimp. Since the loads expect it, it should still be a safe place to start.  If you had more crimp than factory, that could be an issue. 

Antihero (Forum Supporter)
Antihero (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
9/16/20 8:44 a.m.

Went to the local gun shop to forage for ammo and found diddly, unless I want low powered 45colt at $50 a box.

 

But they did have bulk HSM bullets for cheap, so I bought a 250 box of 158 38/357 and 240 44mag/special. They are plated instead of jacketed though, never played with them.

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
9/16/20 9:02 a.m.
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) :

Double check your loading manual, but your listed starting loads for revolver loads should be based on a factory style roll crimp. Since the loads expect it, it should still be a safe place to start.  If you had more crimp than factory, that could be an issue

They are dead close as far as I can tell when comparing visually and with the mic, but although they are both LSWC, they aren't the same exact bullets - so not an exact comparison. I'll post a comparison photo later. Same weight lead though, and mine are just slightly longer OAL due to slightly different cannelure placement and tip design

Also, the starting load is a normal pressure, and the gun is +P rated, so I've got some overhead. 

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
9/17/20 1:08 p.m.

Okay, here's the comparison on the roll crimp .38s. My crimp is the brass on the left, factory load is the silver on the right. As noted, different bullets but same weight. 

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
9/27/20 3:13 p.m.

I finally completed loading a complete round. Twenty of them in fact 


 


 

my biggest observation so far is that Unique doesn't work worth a crap in the RCBS powder measure I have. I couldn't do better than 0.6 grain in variation, and that's the difference between starter and max loads on 38s. I rechecked every round on my scale as I went and adjusted them accordingly. Unique is flake, so I bought some 231 that's ball to try next time. Both are popular for the rounds I'm loading so it won't go to waste. 

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) Reader
9/27/20 8:11 p.m.

Looks like the crimp could be a touch lighter, but it also looks very very  good.

You can make scoops that may work better with flake powder.  Use a leftover case (something with a rim is easy, like a piece of 9mm range brass). Bend a wire around the base, and solder in place (or whatever).  File it down until it only holds as much powder as you want.

 

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
9/28/20 4:59 a.m.

I'll try to back the die of just a hair when I load the next few. I can't put my finger on how it's  different than the factory round, but I agree it 'feels' a little tight when I look at it. If that makes any sense. 
 

these rounds load in the 4-5 grain range. I might have to make a scoop out of a .22 case lol. 

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) Reader
9/28/20 6:03 a.m.

In reply to ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) :

Use calipers and measure how far down the case the crimp goes. The crimped band on yours goes a hair further. Make sure your crimp die lock ring is tight so it won't change from your adjustment.

slantvaliant (Forum Supporter)
slantvaliant (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
9/28/20 7:36 a.m.
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) said:

my biggest observation so far is that Unique doesn't work worth a crap in the RCBS powder measure I have. I couldn't do better than 0.6 grain in variation, and that's the difference between starter and max loads on 38s. I rechecked every round on my scale as I went and adjusted them accordingly. Unique is flake, so I bought some 231 that's ball to try next time. Both are popular for the rounds I'm loading so it won't go to waste. 

My RCBS measure is more consistent what you described.  Doublecheck your setup and technique.  I always strive for a consistent "bump" as I work the lever, to break any bridging, and count a second for the powder to settle.  

I've used dippers for most of my Unique loads because that's what Dad started me with..  No setup required, just a quick verification of what the dipper actually  throws, and I'm off.  I have old (red) and new (yellow) Lee dippers, as well as home-made custom dippers.  With practice, those can be very consistent.

I charge the cases in a block, then do a visual check for empties or double-charges.  If I see a lot of variation among those charged, I stop and find out why. 

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
9/28/20 9:15 a.m.

I really worked on trying to refine a technique, although this being the first time I've done it I'm sure I wasn't as drilled as someone with experience. I ran almost a half pound through it steadily using the same technique to try an build up the muscle memory. I've read that flake powders are less consistent in the uniflow machines at low charge weights. I'll try the ball type powder and see if I still get the variation. If I do, I'll assume I need to work on my techniques some more. As a chemist, I spend a lot of my time weighing out small amounts of stuff, so I do have some track record with it at least. 

I do have a set of red lee dippers somewhere. I'll have to play with those.

I was double and triple checking everything as I went. I even tried weighing all the final cartridges to look for double loads, but i realized that the case-case variation I saw on some rounds was more than the weight of the charges I was loading, so there was no real point. 

1988RedT2
1988RedT2 MegaDork
10/22/20 3:24 p.m.

Sorry if it's already been discussed, but what's the budget system for cleaning brass?  Stainless pin media seems a popular choice.  Can I dump that and my brass in a Harbor Freight rock tumbler?laugh

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) Reader
10/22/20 3:38 p.m.

In reply to 1988RedT2 :

Yes, but the HF model is small.  I would wait for a sale on a bigger unit.  If you are trying to get by on the cheap, the older style vibrating bowl with corn cob media is pretty cheap, used.

1988RedT2
1988RedT2 MegaDork
10/22/20 4:06 p.m.

In reply to matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) :

Small isn't necessarily bad.  I wouldn't be cranking out too many.  Some pistol, some small rifle.  If I could do 50 or 100 cases at a time, I think I'd be okay with that.

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) Reader
10/22/20 4:22 p.m.

In reply to 1988RedT2 :

Some flat sides to help make sure the pile of brass tuns over is helpful, just like the blades in a dryer.  You can make something to do that, if you need, but something more dedicated isn't all that expensive.

https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1020652544?pid=238852

 

84FSP
84FSP UltraDork
10/22/20 5:17 p.m.

We converted an ice cream maker and a 5gallon bucket that we screwed wood Padres into with walnut shells.  Loud but functional on the GRM budget.  Darn thing has been running for 15 years.

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
10/22/20 5:32 p.m.

Since the tread popped back up, I'll update with the fact I tried the W231 ball powder and it was MUCH more consistent. I still haven't been to the range to try the rounds. 

stroker
stroker UberDork
10/22/20 9:44 p.m.

Does somebody know of a 6.5mm cartridge based on the 308 Win that's short enough to function in a Gen 2 AR-15 action?

slantvaliant (Forum Supporter)
slantvaliant (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
10/23/20 8:44 a.m.

In reply to ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) :

WW231 is a pretty good powder.   I used a bunch of it in .45ACP with 200gr SWC's.  Smells odd, if you're used to Unique.  

In reply to stroker :

Maybe 6.5 Timberwolf?  It can sort of be traced to .308 WCF, going through 6BR on the way.  I don't know if you can actually make good cases from .308 WIN, though.  If I had to have a 6.5 cartridge in an AR15, I'd go with a 6.5 Grendel.

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) Reader
10/23/20 9:07 a.m.
stroker said:

Does somebody know of a 6.5mm cartridge based on the 308 Win that's short enough to function in a Gen 2 AR-15 action?

I think in current cartridges you are looking at having to wildcat. As stated, the 6.5 Timberwolf would fit with bullets loaded short, but it has a pretty sharp shoulder, so there may be semi-auto feeding issues, but perhaps not. Necking the 6mm BR up to 6.5 would keep the shallower shoulder, though this would drop case capacity a little.

I would caution, however, that the cost involved to get appropriate action strength levels is not low.  Remington made some for their .30 REM AR that would basically allow an AR-10 bolt head in an AR-15 upper. Otherwise pressures will need to be kept low enough to avoid overstressing the AR-15 bolt head.  If you have not already, take a look at SAAMI pressure levels for 5.56, 6.8 SPC, 6.5 Grendel, and on up through the various .45 caliber thumpers.  As the case body goes up, the working pressure needs to be dropped to keep bolt thrust under control.

bigdaddylee82
bigdaddylee82 UberDork
11/30/20 5:35 p.m.

$25 digital scale Cyber Monday deal at Midway.

National Metallic Digital Powder Scale 1600 Grain Capacity

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
11/30/20 5:58 p.m.

Well I just learned that my FIL has a new, unopened Lee press. Bench mount style. We were discussing where to mount the thing, and were unable to come up with anywhere that was child safe and clean. With two, sometimes three branches of the family in this house, space is tight. Anyway, he also has lead casting equipment which will be useful if I decide to load pistol stuff. So, progress. 

84FSP
84FSP UltraDork
11/30/20 8:29 p.m.

Score - casting your own is easy peazy and ideal for target loads in pistol cartridges.  I cannot fathom how manynof our home cast and swage lubed 148 grain full wadcutter 357's I loaded and shot.  They were magic with 3.5grains of bullseye.

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) Reader
11/30/20 8:46 p.m.

In reply to barefootskater (Shaun) :

The dies in use will lock into the press pretty well. Keep the powder and primers in a locking cabinet. You only want to have one powder near by when you are reloading, so having the powder and supplies somewhere else is good. Accidentally substituting the wrong powder can kill you, especially with pistol powders.

barefootskater (Shaun)
barefootskater (Shaun) UberDork
11/30/20 11:50 p.m.

In reply to matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) :

Oh we'll come up with a setup that's safe and organized. I'm still a few months I think from actually loading anything. And I'm not sure I'll bother with pistol stuff anyway, since I only shoot 9mm and it's usually cheap enough to not worry about. When it's available anyway. 

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
12/1/20 7:42 a.m.

In reply to barefootskater (Shaun) :

I am sure you will get something safe.  I was just mentioning that you don't really need the press, itself, somewhere save, just somewhere you can work without being bumped.  The dangerous bits will be stored somewhere other than where you are working

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