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 Post subject: Reloading 38 Special during the time of the coronavirus
PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2020 10:45 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2005 8:42 pm
Posts: 28996
Location: Missouri
First, I can thank heaven I laid in a big supply of bullets, primers and Unique before the latest wild run against the gun shops. I swore during the last ammunition panic I’d stock up during times of peace and plenty, and did.

Next time though, with God as my witness me and mine will have more small magnum pistol primers than we’ll ever be able to shoot. All my recipes call for small magnum pistol primers to light off full charges of 296 or 2400 in a .357 Magnum, and mid range loads of HS-6, but I’m drowning in Unique and you can load 7.5 grains in a .357 case and use my glut of CCI small rifle primers (CCI SP and SR are identical). I’d never load any .357 Magnums except my Taylor Uberti 1873 Cattleman shoots .357 to point of aim using the blade sight and notched rear, and .38 Specials shoot a tad high. I rang a steel plate about 100 yards away one handed three shots in a row with it, in front of a witness, and felt a bit Elmerish. It needs full house .357 loads, but I’m afraid to load up Elmer’s heavy 38 Special load because it might shoot my 1950 Colt Trooper 38 loose, and I have a 1950 Colt Detective Special to think about the boys sticking hot loads in when the old man isn’t around. Never load anything that you don’t want a kid or grandkid putting in your weakest gun.

I’ve set up my Lee Classic Turret press with the metal rod that spins the top plate, have a Lee auto disc measure, and I’m loading 4.7 grains Unique in about a thousand 38 Special cases I’ve accumulated, using a .357 Action BH18 Missouri Bullet Company cast bullet, and CCI 400 small rifle primers. Ignition is 100% and accuracy great, no leading I can see.

My Colt Trooper 4” 38 spits these out at about an 860 FPS average. Add 50 FPS for my 1873 Cattleman. These loads are safe in my guns.

Image

https://imgur.com/gallery/gl6ojEk

A Lee Classic Turret Press is nearly a progressive set up this way. You set a case, size it, then stick a primer on primer arm when the press is up, then prime on the down stroke. The press advances to the second station, where it’s flared,, and advances to the third station where it’s charged, and finally on station four stick a bullet on top and seat it,,,;and repeat.

When you can buy primers, they are 3 cents. When bullets are in stock, they are about 8 cents for .357 (11 cents for 240 grain 44 Keith). Unique powder costs less than 2 cents, and at about 13 cents a pop loads these are $7 a box.

Casting your own bullets, makes these cheaper than shooting a .22 long rifle.

I’ve loaded up about five hundred, and after another three hundred I’ll raise the dies a bit and load the last two hundred using 7.5 grains Unique in .357 cases for my Cattleman.

And while the powder measure is set to 7.5 grains of Unique, I can put my extra plate on and load 600 44 Special Skeeter loads, then 200 44 Special Keith loads, and load the last 200 as full house 44 Magnums for my Redhawk, using 296 and jacketed bullets.

By then maybe I can buy some small magnum pistol primers and load up some proper full house .357 magnum loads.

And I can also use that press to load up a thousand .223s, in case I might want to go shoot prairie dogs. And I have about 500 45-70 cases to load after that, and who can count all the 30-06 cases I’ve accumulated?

I guess there’s the chance I’ll catch the virus and some other fellow shoot up all my reloads, but I’ll risk it.



_________________
I have never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as a reason for withdrawing from a friend. Thomas Jefferson


Last edited by SuperXOne on Mon Nov 02, 2020 6:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Reloading 38 Special during the time of the coronavirus
PostPosted: Mon Nov 02, 2020 6:57 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Tue Dec 27, 2011 5:50 pm
Posts: 2571
Location: SE Ohio...where ruffed grouse were
I forget the powder now but two 000 Buck over a bit of powder in a .38 make a cheap and interesting load at long porch distance re raccoons and possums, should that ever be an issue.

Hand set a 000 on the case and seat with a flat piece of steel held against press to push the balls home...a thin ring of lead will be left.


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 Post subject: Re: Reloading 38 Special during the time of the coronavirus
PostPosted: Fri Nov 06, 2020 11:16 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2005 8:42 pm
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Location: Missouri
I’ve loaded a thousand 38 Specials, and was going to take off at 3 this afternoon to go shoot some up with a friend of mine at the range. He texted me later and said he’d been exposed to COVID 19 and was quarantined 14 days. Geez. So much for that idea.

I took my extra turret and set up the dies for 44 Special, and I’ve loaded 200 Skeeter 44 Special loads of 7.5 grains Unique so far.

The Lee Classic Turret press is a good gadget. I’m going to buy two extra turrets for my extra sets of .357 Magnum and 44 Magnum dies so I won’t have to reset or fiddle with the dies when I load those calibers. I’m using up my oldest primers (I can age them by price stickers) and using CCI large pistol primers first, for Skeeter loads. Later on I’ll get to the Winchester large pistol primers, that are good for standard or magnum loads. I set a cylinder from my revolver on the bench and drop each round in as I load, and if it sticks coming out I have a reject box. I have so many cases those will get tossed when I shoot them up.

I see on television over 120,000 folks tested positive for coronavirus today and over a thousand died of it.

A client called and said she was quarantined, her daughter was positive and sick, and two of her uncles were on ventilators.

But the sun will shine again someday when this cruel plague ends, and I’ll have plenty of pistol rounds to shoot up with my friends.

My Amish renter and his friends will be able to blast away for hours, while I smile and watch.

_________________
I have never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as a reason for withdrawing from a friend. Thomas Jefferson


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