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Old August 20, 2002, 12:55 PM   #1
Oleg Volk
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Bogie, others...help with re-loading

I'd like to set up for reloading the following calibers:

30-06 because components are available and I'd like to learn on it.

38S&W because I like several revolvers in that chambering but can't afford much ammo nor find LRN as useful as SMC or even JHP.

45ACP because I want to get a Webley someday and make plinker loads for it.

7.62 Nagant IF i can get enough brass for it and IF it isn't too much of a pain.

I think that 38S&W would be the first one, as it should be easier to load than bottle-necked cases and cheap to make (takes little powder...would standard 100gr .355 bullets work or not?)

When we meet at Knob Creek, could you help me shop for tools and components?
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Old August 20, 2002, 02:01 PM   #2
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Oleg, the 38s&w uses .361 diameter bullets, not .357 like the 38spl. You may want to slug the barrel to find out exactly what diameter you need. If your bore is oversize, you *might* be able to use the .364 bullets for 9x18Makarov. FWIW, I haven't found anything recently in .361 except casting equipment. I'd start with the 30-06.

IIRC, Lapua still makes brass for 7.62x54R, and the process is the same as 30-06.

If I had to start all over again, I'd go with the Lymann Tmag turret press expert kit:
http://www.midwayusa.com/midwayusa/a...eItemID=877078
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Old August 20, 2002, 02:11 PM   #3
Chris McDermott
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Bad news for the 38 S&W - this cartridge takes a .360" bullet. You could probably reload with a .355 HP, but I think your accuracy expectation would be rather low. You might be able to find someone swaging a HP lead bullet, but even finding a correct cast bullet can be difficult. One place to look is Nash Castings.

You definately should start reloading, especially since you like some cartridges that aren't popular enough for the factories.
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Old August 20, 2002, 03:36 PM   #4
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7.62x54 isn't really worth reloading for cost purposes, and there is a scarcity of match bullets for it (just a Sierra MK that I know of). If you need specialty ammo, try pulling surplus bullets and reseating your own bullets in the primed surplus cases. It's not really a pain, but it can be expensive due to a lack of brass & cheap bullets in .311.
30/06: is one of the easiest cartridges to learn on, and the availability of cheap components makes it very cost effective.
.45: Ditto. The .45auto is another very forgiving cartridge.
I haven't loaded .38S&W, only special and .357.
Let the guys know about the volume you expect to shoot, and the price you expect to pay, and they can recommend the proper setup.
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Old August 20, 2002, 03:41 PM   #5
Oleg Volk
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38S&W 50-100 rounds per week.

30-06 40-60 rounds per week

45 100-120 rounds per week. I am not interested in reloading 45 for cost issue, only for accuracy with Webleys, if I ever get one.
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Old August 21, 2002, 10:05 AM   #6
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Yeah, no prob.

You don't see a lot of tools at KCR, but there's a nice variety of powder for sale...

Oleg, what kinda rifles are the .30-06?

Guys, what surplus/cheapo powder should he stock up on?

I'm guessing that the surplus AA5 would work for both the .38 and the .45...
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Old August 21, 2002, 11:41 AM   #7
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Re: .38 S&W bullets - - -

Elder Son and I have loaded thousands of .38 S&W rounds using standard .38 Special bullets. If you buy 'em SOFT, (as opposed to our normal desire for hard bullets) they slug out nicely. Most .357 LEAD bullets are actually that diameter, and .38 S&W varies somewhat, usually .359 to .360. At most, the barrel is only some .003 oversize, and, let's face it, we're not talking bench rest rifle bullets here.

If you want really nice accuracy, mild charges of Bullseye powder with swaged lead 148-gr. hollow base wadcutters are excellent. The dead-soft lead upsets and fills the bore. A quality revolver, like the S&W Hand Ejector "Victory Model," or the fine little Webley police service pieces, can be outstandingly accurate, once you work out your exact hold.

The same bullet, loaded inverted with a slightly increased powder charge, is probably the best of all possible loads for the .38 S&W in a home defense or carry role. Resist the temptation to soup up this load. Accuracy goes right away, and the HBWC skirt tears away. Remember, you are loading for novelty with this old cartridge. There are many better rounds for full time anti-personnel use.

Difficult to find, but occasionally available at gun shows, are the Winchester/Western factory-swaged 200 gr. LRN bullets. W-W used to load these in their .38 Spl and .38 S&W "Super Police" cartridges. This bullet has a hollow base and a very good, blunt shape. I have bought a couple of boxes of bullets alone, years back. Lyman used to sell a mould which cast this same pattern bullet at 195 gr., with a solid base. In pure lead, it would probably slug out well enough, but not shoot as accurately as the HB version. If you find some of either of these, please reduce powder charges, in deference to the break-top revolvers.

As to .45 ACP for the Webley--I think the factory .455 load was something like 700 fps with a 265 gr. bullet. Again, at gun shows you can probably find some old yellow-boxed W-W factory bullets marked .45 Colt. These are 250 or 255 gr. lead RN FP with hollow bases. The heavy bullets at moderate velocities will shoot much closer to the factory Webley sights than most typical .45 ACP loads.

I have an old Lyman cast bullet manual which gives (old) loads for both .455 and .38 S&W. Let me know if you need it and I'll give you their suggested loads for each.

I think you'll really enjoy handloading.

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Old August 21, 2002, 11:46 AM   #8
Oleg Volk
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Rifle is a chopped Garand. I'd like to load soft points because they proved far more accurate than ball ammunition.

In 38SW, I want to load exactly what you described, ditto in 45.
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Old August 21, 2002, 12:41 PM   #9
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Okay, so we're gonna have to avoid the slower powders. With the short-barrel Garand, whaddya think we stick to the lighter bullets too - 150-168 grainers?

Which powder?
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Old August 21, 2002, 02:04 PM   #10
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IMR 4895 It's really the best surplus choice. It's available everywhere and runs $96 for one keg from Wideners,IIRC. Powder Valley,gibrass hitech and other folks may also have it for cheaper if you're going to buy primers or other powder.
BTW, Oleg, the cost may not seem like a factor, but I reload .45 auto with 230gr LRN for about $3.08 per 50rounds. That's 1/3 the cost of even the cheapest factory ammo, and about 1/2 that of remanufactured.
Sounds like you could possibly make due with a single stage.
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Old August 21, 2002, 03:24 PM   #11
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Okay... Now that that's settled...

I don't have any old .30-06 dies - never have had a rifle in that calibre... Oleg, your best deal on new dies will likely be Lee.

Does Lee make .38 S&W dies?

Get on the phone to Midway. Go ahead and get a set of dies for the .30-06 - that's what you'll learn on. You want the sizer and the seater - get the set that comes with the shellholder. The "deluxe" set with the neck sizer is not necessary for what you're doing - you can't get away with just neck sizing for a Garand. Order Lyman's (47th?) loading manual while you're at it. They've got a lot of cast bullet loads, and the general instructions are pretty good. You're also going to want the case trimmer dojiggers (Lee again... cheapest) for the .30-06 and the Russian. If you don't mind spending a few bucks more, call Sinclair's and get the Wilson with the prerequisite shellholders. In fact, go ahead and do that. You're getting a free press and measure (did I also say I was throwing in a scale?), so you can afford it. If you don't have a bunch of Boxer primed Russian brass, order some Lapua.

If they sell Imperial Die Wax, that's what you'll use for sizing lube. One can will go a nice long way. If you're loading a LOT, get a spray can of Hornady One Shot.

Lessee - what else will he need for the "getting started" routine? An inexpensive dial caliper?

Oh yeah - a priming tool. Midway: Get the handheld Lee Autoprime, and shellholders for the .30-06, the .38 and the Russian.

I know I'm forgetting stuff...
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Old August 21, 2002, 03:31 PM   #12
Oleg Volk
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Give me an idea of how much it would cost, total?
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Old August 21, 2002, 04:34 PM   #13
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Oh heck...

Dunno what you'll spend on the bullets...

A jug of 4895 will set you back around $90ish.

Priming tool will run around $15.

The Lee trimmers will cost you around $10ish; the Wilson around $40ish, and with care will last the rest of your life.

Lyman manual is around $20ish - check Ebay or Amazon's used stuff...

The dies should be under $30ish.

Die wax should be around $4, and the spray runs around $8/can.

Cheapo dial caliper - $15 from Harbor Freight. I've got a plastic Lyman one you can have, but you probably wouldn't want it.

You could probably get along without the caliper - Get the Lee trimmers, and just load to stay inside magazine-max-length, and you should be okay.
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Old August 21, 2002, 04:48 PM   #14
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Like handloaders are fond of saying, Oleg:

You won't spend any less reloading, you'll just shoot a LOT more.

That, and it's a lotta fun.
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Old August 21, 2002, 07:15 PM   #15
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Not a new idea by any long stretch...

But how about we help out our resident photographer Oleg, and Runt?

What I'm saying is, I've actually got a spare set of .30-06 sizing dies laying somewhere around my shop. I also have a goodly amount of spare .30-06 brass, and even a small amount of fired .38 S&W brass. TFL's reloaders are a big enough family, I'll send him what I have, and I'll wager among the other contributions to the cause, his out-of-pocket setup expense could be brought way down...

(If I remember correctly, the young man's still looking for work)
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Old August 22, 2002, 09:11 AM   #16
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Oh, and Oleg - Since you'll be loading to suit _your_ rifle, you can load FMJ instead of the more expensive soft-point ammo - The idea is to have it tuned to your rifle. The reason the soft point may shoot better in your rifle is just that you got lucky with it.
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Old August 22, 2002, 09:23 AM   #17
Oleg Volk
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Good news on the work front: I will be teaching four photography and lighting classes and one web design tools class...which all comes to about 60-65% of full-time and is still a top-gap measure. After running on empty for so long, even that helps.

I got quite a bit of 30-06 brass but none in 38S&W. My previous reloading experience has been with a progressive Dillon rig (under owners' supervision) but a single-stage might be better for a beginner...keeps me focused.
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Old August 22, 2002, 09:31 AM   #18
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Oleg,

I'm sure you already found this, but for .38 S&W brass:

http://www.midwayusa.com/midwayusa/a...eItemID=735915

.38 S&W dies:

http://www.midwayusa.com/midwayusa/a...eItemID=209266
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Old August 22, 2002, 10:34 AM   #19
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So, Oleg - you want the stuff or not? I'll start boxing it up... Looks like dies are inexpensive enough via Midway... Oh yeah - get the Lee "factory crimp" die for the .30-06. It's worth it.

I'll bring my loading kit, and run you through stuff while we're at KCR...
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Old August 22, 2002, 10:36 AM   #20
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Oh yeah - and I ain't gonna give this away... I've got an RCBS Uniflow measure with the RCBS micrometer, the Sinclair drop tube and powder bottle adaptor, and a stand that I need to unload. I'd like at least $60 for it. Measure sells new for $50ish, the micrometer for $30ish, and the drop tube, adaptor and stand would add another $40ish...
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