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Thread: Reduced rifle loads with cast boolits?

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    Question Reduced rifle loads with cast boolits?

    Anyone around here have any experience loading up reduced rifle loads? I just got into casting and would like to cast some 180gr or so .323 boolits for my 325wsm and load them down to less than 2000fps for cheap target practice with no leading. I've read that SR 4756 is a good powder for reduced loads and have also read about guys using Unique. Any ideas, input, load data?

  2. #2

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    You REALLY need to get the Lyman cast bullet manual, because that's what it's all about. It's shy on hard cast, hi-vel info but long on loads under 2k. Your 325WSM isn't in the latest version I have, but I'm betting the same kind of info is out there. I've used the third edition manual and its two predecessors for years to develop really accurate, cheap loads for a whole lot of calibers. In fact, for some of the older calibers that interest me, it's virtually the only way to go. Just try buying ammo for the 38-56 or 50-140, for example!

    Most of mine hover in the 1300-1500 fps range because of my inclination to use my centerfires for small game hunting. But you can pump them up toward 2000 and a little over using the right lube, gaschecks and what amounts to an alloy similar to wheelweights: Lyman #2 alloy. No leading in my long experience, and if you recover your bullets at the range, shooting gets really cheap. 4756 is a good powder for that over-1500fps range, but for the lower speeds I end up using Unique, Herco, Red Dot or 700X most of the time.

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    Excellent, I'll get one of those manuals. Thanks for the heads up. Is the 300wsm in the one you have by any chance? It's the same case as the 325, just necked up a skosh. I figure if I can find some load info on it, that would give me a starting point. Even better if I can come up with a load using Unique since I have a bunch and use it several other calibers.

    I don't scrounge range lead but I've got lots of ww's, lead, and some linotype. I may just have to try your bucket sand trap though! 1300-1500 would be just fine with me. If I can just water drop ww's and come up with a load with not too much pressure/velocity to avoid leading I'd be a happy camper.

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    My 3rd edition is dated 1980, so no. I just checked their site and they don't list any subsequent to the the 3rd edition. Looks like you'll have to go to web sources for WSM data, unless there's another more recent pub out there.

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    Hmmmm. Come to think of it, there may be a back door at Lyman. Their site is splashing the announcement of their newest reloading manual, #49. I have to assume that a brand new manual would include the WSMs, and all past manuals have listed cast bullet loads along with the jacketed. Worth a call to their 800# to find out.

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    You can call Accurate and they'll give you recommended loads for use with XMR-5744.

    Very good.

    You can also use very slow burning powders in reduced masses to slow the projectiles.
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    I loaded 170 grain flat nose in my 30-06.

    One load uses a light charge of Red Dot per the Lyman manual. The manual says 1350 fps but I have not cronoed them yet.

    The other load uses IMR 3031 again per the Lyman manual. For 1600 to 2500 fps depending on charge

    The Lyman manual is great and also has a lot of good information on how to mix your own lead alloy.

    One thing to not on loads is that the manual gives a huge range of powder weights, and they do not change much with case capacity. So I suspect you could with a little studying of different cartridges interpolate an nice safe load if one is not given.

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    You should be able to use 8mm mauser data with fairly close results. I believe the 323 case is a little larger so any load listed should be safe in the 323. My lyman manual shows sr 4759 at 22/25grs and 1871/2052 fps. Probably expect slightly less velocity but not much. Unique is shown at 13/17grs and 1490/1705 fps.
    You should be able to get good accuracy up to 1800fps or so with little difficulty, after that it's a little harder. size the bullet about .001 over groove size and water drop wheel weights and you should be good for 1800. May need a gas check starting about 1800 or possibly sooner.

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    hey Snyd, following up our conversation on this...


    the speer Manuel.. has three powders for reduce loads in fairly common round..


    the most common is SR 4759
    then IMR 4198

    and

    AA5744 for the 325wsm @150 gn... i dont have any cast data in my speer book though.. but i hope that give you something to build off...

    all velocity's are < 2000 with an average of 1950.. on the high end of the scale..

    you can borrow the book if you want let me know
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

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    Default Bullet lubes

    An important variable is the bullet lube. I don't know of anything better all round thatn the old Alox-beeswax stuff for the rifle and smokeless powder.

    Stay away from the harder lubes meant for commerical pistol bullets. They are good at staying on bullets produced and sold in bulk but don't do as well on rifle bullets at higher veleocities.
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    Pick up a copy of Lee's handloading manual. He has done extensive work with using cast bullets in rifles. Lee found a correlation between bullet hardness and case pressure and sets this out in his book. You do need to know your bullets hardness (brinell scale) though.

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    The majority of my reduced cast loading has been using unique or 2400, and velocities in the 1400-1700 fps range. There is the risk of a double charge with the faster powders, but the mild report and excellent accuracy has been worth it to me.

    To prevent leading, there are a few guidelines I follow. First scrub the bore down to bare metal. I generally don't clean my bores that often with jacketed bullets, but when I switch to cast, I want to start with a clean bore so there isn't any copper fouling that will induce leading. Then the basics are a bullet sized .001" over bore die, and a good bullet lube. For commercial, lbt blue, home made is moly lithium axle grease and beeswax, mixed until I like the consistancy. All my cast bullets are made from wheelweights, and unless I'm really pushing the bullet hard, I'll leave it air cooled and gas check it.

    I've yet to get groups on par with jacketed bullets, but typically will get 5 shot 1" groups at 50 yds, and 100yd groups of 2" or so.

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    Thanks guys. It sounds like it is definitely doable, I just had no clue of where to start, now I do. I'll start the search/research of a mould for the 323. It sounds like I want one that will drop .324 or .325 so I can size to .324. Same way you do with pistol boolits.

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    Default sizing

    Try to avoid sizing if possible - all sizing is determental to accuracy. Lyman figures about an inch increase in group size for every .001" you size the bullet down. Lee molds are advertised to drop bullets very close to the bore size - a real plus for accuracy. You can also try lubing the bullets by hand and then shooting them unsized and see what accuracy you get.

    The nose of the bullet should be also ride on top of the lands - if it fit loosely in the bore it will not shoot well. Some of the older Lyman bullets had noses that were way too small and I tried for years to get them to shoot well until I found out the problem.

    In addition to the Lyman Cast bullet manual get the one from the NRA - it also has a lot of good information.


    Quote Originally Posted by Snyd View Post
    Thanks guys. It sounds like it is definitely doable, I just had no clue of where to start, now I do. I'll start the search/research of a mould for the 323. It sounds like I want one that will drop .324 or .325 so I can size to .324. Same way you do with pistol boolits.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    Default I love to shoot those cast boolits

    I suggest you acquire a copy of the December issue of Handloader Magazine.

    You'll find an article entitled "Cast Bullet Myth Busting" by Mike Venturino.

    At least a couple of the alleged myths were repeated on this thread.

    You'll be glad you read it.

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    Snyd:
    The LATEST, Lyman Reloading Handbook, 49th Edition, DOES have Cast Bullet loads for the 325 WSM.

    Mould #323470

    SR 4759 20.5 to 31.5 grains, for example, but there are other powders.

    IMR 4198
    H4895
    Others.

    I use SR-4759 for some cast bullet loads. It's a bulky powder, and I think it is made for reduced loads. The older Metal Cans, held 8 .OZs and the Newer plastic ones, hold 1 lb. like with other powders.

    They stopped selling it a few years ago, but brought it back, due to demand.

    Smitty of the North
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    Thanks again Smitty!

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    Default Reloading cast bullets

    You might want to go over the the "Cast Boollets" web site and ask there. If they don't have the information they usually can figure out where to find it.

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