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Thread: Trail Boss for our big game rifles?

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    Member AKsoldier's Avatar
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    Default Trail Boss for our big game rifles?

    I just read an article in Handloader magazine about the use of Trail Boss powder in conventional bottle-necked rifle cartridges using jacketed bullets. Sounds pretty interesting, I'm about to try some in my .300 WM. If it works well enough, I may buy some bullets designed for the 30-30 (lower recoil anyway) and work up some small game loads for the .300. Talk about versatility! The recoil is drastically reduced too, so this might be a good tool for teaching new shooters as well. My wife might finally get to pull the trigger on my .300! (Only has about 1.75" eye relief on the bushnel.)

    Have any of you tried this yet?

    The other 299,300,000 people can have it.

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    I do not know about the 300 winny and trail boss but I did meet a guy at the range shooting 220 grain bullets at subsonic velocities out of a 308 with a suppressor, he said he used trail boss for those loads. Kind of cool you could here the firing pin hit the primer.

    SR 4759 is designed for reduced loads in large cartridges and may be a better choice, at least I have seen more load data for using it.

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    Thanks, I just had a problem with my .300 dies, so this particular project is on hold. I could use some trail boss for the .243, but what would be the point? Recoil is already very low. Maybe there's an application there for very light loads for fur bearing animals to reduce pelt damage?

    I have already used trail boss in my S&W 460 and love it! Both my wife and my ten-year-old son can shoot it with 8 grains of TB pushing my 300 gr. cast bullets. Recoil with that load to me feels about like .22 mag in a Ruger single-six.

    The other 299,300,000 people can have it.

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    Please take all this with a grain of salt as I haven't got my 500 loading up and running yet. I like the idea of Trail Boss in reduced loading because it is so bulky. I don't like dumping a tiny bit of powder into a case. I like my powder to fill most of the case. It seems to me this is where Trail Boss is great.

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    Trial Boss should work fine as well as most shotgun/ pistol powders for light loads. If you going to shoot very many of these light loads you might as well use cast bullets as they are much cheaper and accuracy and performance will be similar up to about 1800 fps or a little higher. Also, there is a lot of data already available for cast bullets which removes the guess work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rbuck351 View Post
    Trial Boss should work fine as well as most shotgun/ pistol powders for light loads. If you going to shoot very many of these light loads you might as well use cast bullets as they are much cheaper and accuracy and performance will be similar up to about 1800 fps or a little higher. Also, there is a lot of data already available for cast bullets which removes the guess work.
    I'm already searching for molds for the .300 winny and the .243.

    The other 299,300,000 people can have it.

    Noone has a more intimate understanding of, or deeper appreciation for freedom, than a soldier who has fought for it in a country where it does not exist.

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    I have loaded trail boss loads in my .358 Norma and my 35-30/30 as well as in the 500 Cyrus from Cross Outdoors. It is a great powder. It really increases the versatility of the big boomers and it does work great with cast bullets. In the 35-30/30 it is virtually the same noise and recoil as a .22, going 1250 fps but with a 158 gr. bullet.

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    I'm interested in this as well for my .06. I've been thinking of putting together a light small game load with 110gr or 130gr bullets. Do you guys use standard or magnum primers to get complete combustion?

    Mountaintrekker

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    Default This Forum is NOT a waste of time.

    I've needed a better Cast Bullet load, and haven't found it yet.

    I've heard of Trail Boss before, of course, but after reading this I done went and bought a pound of it, hoping to use for Cast Bullet loads, in a 7 Mag.

    I started searching for loads, and ended up on the Hogdon Website (Their Loading Data Center) and believe it or not, found what I was looking for.

    The data I found is for a Jacketed bullet, but I'm sure I can use it, since the velocity is 1400 fps.

    Thanks for bringin it up, AKsoldier.

    Smitty of the North
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    Cartridge: 7mm Remington Magnum
    Load Type: Rifle

    Bullet Weight (Gr.) Manufacturer Powder Bullet Diam. C.O.L. Grs. Vel. (ft/s) Pressure Grs. Vel. (ft/s) Pressure

    140 GR. NOS PART IMR Trail Boss .284" 3.250"
    17.2 1405 21,400 PSI
    24.5 1724 31,000 PSI

    NEVER EXCEED MAXIMUM LOADS
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    I just burned some more trail boss in the 460 today. I spent some .243 ammo as well, so I have some empties to try out. I'll load a short run with some 85 gr. Barnes X's and some 100 gr. Nosler partitions, just to see how it performs with jacketed bullets. According to the article in Handloader, the author needed the max loads with trail boss to stabilize jacked bullets.

    Another lesson from today: I can't use high-pressure loads with my own cast bullets in the 460. Mine are a 300 gr. gas-checked wide meplat bullet from a Lee mold using half wheel weight and half linotype for the alloy. They run fine with the trail boss, but when I pushed them with 40 grs. of lil gun they left plenty behind and leaded up my barrel. I think they are a bit on the small side for my gun. Time to slug the barrel.

    The other 299,300,000 people can have it.

    Noone has a more intimate understanding of, or deeper appreciation for freedom, than a soldier who has fought for it in a country where it does not exist.

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    I have been using Trailboss in my 375 H&H with 220gr Hornadys and have been having a blast! It is also producing some nice groups at 50 yards. I tied it in my kids 243 and had fun but like you stated not much point in it.

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    Default Bullet lube and alloy

    Lube and alloy could be contributing to the leading also.

    Are you using the Lee Liquid alox or a solid lube? Many of the hard lubes are made to stay on the bullets in bulk packaging and just don't work that well for high velocities. I'm still playing with the liquid alox but it appears a single coating may not get enough on the bearing surface.

    A harder alloy doesn't necessarily mean less leading - sometimes a softer alloy like the old wheel weight mix with a tad of tin added will work better.

    I'd try straight wheel weights or perhaps add 5 or 10% linotype and the old standard 50/50 alox & beeswax lube mix. I've got to mold some bullets up for my .460 - I'll let you know how it works out for me.


    Quote Originally Posted by AKsoldier View Post
    .....

    Another lesson from today: I can't use high-pressure loads with my own cast bullets in the 460. Mine are a 300 gr. gas-checked wide meplat bullet from a Lee mold using half wheel weight and half linotype for the alloy. They run fine with the trail boss, but when I pushed them with 40 grs. of lil gun they left plenty behind and leaded up my barrel. I think they are a bit on the small side for my gun. Time to slug the barrel.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
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    Quote Originally Posted by tvfinak View Post
    Lube and alloy could be contributing to the leading also.

    Are you using the Lee Liquid alox or a solid lube? Many of the hard lubes are made to stay on the bullets in bulk packaging and just don't work that well for high velocities. I'm still playing with the liquid alox but it appears a single coating may not get enough on the bearing surface.

    A harder alloy doesn't necessarily mean less leading - sometimes a softer alloy like the old wheel weight mix with a tad of tin added will work better.

    I'd try straight wheel weights or perhaps add 5 or 10% linotype and the old standard 50/50 alox & beeswax lube mix. I've got to mold some bullets up for my .460 - I'll let you know how it works out for me.
    I'm using LLA. I put one coat on them, ran them through the .452 sizing die and pressed on the gas checks, then put another coat of LLA on them. A guy from cast boolits forum was kind enough to send me the LLA along with some home-made lube that looks like blue candle wax. I'm thinking about melting some of that down and mixing in some LLA and see how that works.

    As for my alloy - I didn't measure precisely, just eye-balled about half wheel weight ingots and half linotype. I water-dropped too. maybe I'd be better off dry dropping them and reducing the linotype some.

    The other 299,300,000 people can have it.

    Noone has a more intimate understanding of, or deeper appreciation for freedom, than a soldier who has fought for it in a country where it does not exist.

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    I believe the loading manuals and other "experts" recommend lubricating jacketed bullets, at least for the very light loads, to prevent bullets from sticking in the barrel.

    I have shot the Finnish "Cats Sneeze" handload for the 7.63 X 39 out of an SKS Yugo. I pulled and reused the jacketed 123 gr. bullet. After assembling the load, I dipped the bullet in ALOX bullet lube. I believe the powder was Bullseye. See Gunwriters of the Web site.

    My tape recorder in another room upstairs recorded muzzle blast as being on par with a handclap. It would not cycle the action. Accuracy and penetration at 20 feet was good enough to warrant testing at longer range. I plan to do this someday, and would like to get one of those little CZ carbines in this cartridge for testing. My guess is that this load is good for 25 yards at best for small game.

    I would get a collet bullet puller and a faster powder if I were to do more of these. I believe the true Finnish "Cats Sneeze" load uses a 140 gr. cast lead bullet and "Vhit" powder? I did not drill out the flash holes and I don't recall if the primers backed out or not.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bukshot View Post
    I believe the loading manuals and other "experts" recommend lubricating jacketed bullets, at least for the very light loads, to prevent bullets from sticking in the barrel.
    That's interesting. I've never seen such a recommendation in a loading manual.

    I have heard that you should avoid getting lube on a case, and especially the neck, because it keeps it from expanding and letting go of the bullet, which causes excessive pressure.

    I heard it from someone who said that blew up his rifle. He also said that Hatchers Notebook devoted an entire chapter to this.

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    I have been using Trail Boss for reduced loads with cast bullets for my 7mm RM.

    It's doin OK, but I noticed a couple of things right off, in comparison to what I've used before.

    For my purposes, I'll be using MORE of it, (That's the advantage. It's Bulky to take up space) than I would, with a fast Handgun type powder.

    Also, it's a bit more expensive. There are 9 ounces in what would be a 1 pound can for other powders, the cost is less, for the 9 ounces, than the pound you'd get for most other powders, but when the cost is extrapolated, it's still more spendly.

    More expensive to use, and more expensive to buy, for my usage, but it could solve ignition problems caused by using light charges in large cases.

    Smitty of the North.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    I have been using Trail Boss for reduced loads with cast bullets for my 7mm RM.

    It's doin OK, but I noticed a couple of things right off, in comparison to what I've used before.

    For my purposes, I'll be using MORE of it, (That's the advantage. It's Bulky to take up space) than I would, with a fast Handgun type powder.

    Also, it's a bit more expensive. There are 9 ounces in what would be a 1 pound can for other powders, the cost is less, for the 9 ounces, than the pound you'd get for most other powders, but when the cost is extrapolated, it's still more spendly.

    More expensive to use, and more expensive to buy, for my usage, but it could solve ignition problems caused by using light charges in large cases.

    Smitty of the North.
    The cost you're paying may be a supply and demand issue because where I am the half pound can of TB is slightly LESS than half the cost of a pound of other similar use powders. And for me, the TB charge is smaller than others such as sr-4759. So it is cheaper overall.

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    Quote Originally Posted by evandailey View Post
    The cost you're paying may be a supply and demand issue because where I am the half pound can of TB is slightly LESS than half the cost of a pound of other similar use powders. And for me, the TB charge is smaller than others such as sr-4759. So it is cheaper overall.
    I didn't compare it to SR 4759, but Unique, that I was using.

    I've seen it here for $17.99 and $18.99 for a 9 ounce jug. I'm not sure I'll keep using it at this point, but the cost diff won't be a large part of the desision.

    I'll decide depending on if I can find an accurate load.

    Thanks
    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
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    I tried Trail Boss in my 1903A3 a couple weeks ago. I loaded 10 each of the following:
    110 gr spitzer
    110 gr RN
    150 gr Boat-tail
    150 grain flat base
    165 gr Boat Tail
    180 grain Boat-tail
    180 gr Flat base
    190 grain Match King

    All were loaded with 19.0 grains of Trail Boss. All used Winchester brass and a CCI-200 primer. I also used a Lee factory Crimp.

    I had to use the 600 yard mark on the sights and all the loads were going around 1,700 fps. All shot HORRIBLE GROUPS, except the 190gr SMK, which gave me a 2.0 inch group.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    I tried Trail Boss in my 1903A3 a couple weeks ago. I loaded 10 each of the following:
    110 gr spitzer
    110 gr RN
    150 gr Boat-tail
    150 grain flat base
    165 gr Boat Tail
    180 grain Boat-tail
    180 gr Flat base
    190 grain Match King

    All were loaded with 19.0 grains of Trail Boss. All used Winchester brass and a CCI-200 primer. I also used a Lee factory Crimp.

    I had to use the 600 yard mark on the sights and all the loads were going around 1,700 fps. All shot HORRIBLE GROUPS, except the 190gr SMK, which gave me a 2.0 inch group.
    Sounds about like what I would expect with those bullets. Most of them need much more velocity to stabilize than trailboss can provide. The rule of thumb seems to be to use heavy for caliber bullets, or bullets designed for lower velocity, ie: 30-30 bullets in a .300 win mag, or 30-06. Use a bullet designed for low velocity and you can get good results with trail boss. Can you increase the charge a bit without compressing? I've read trail boss doesn't work well when compressed. That might stabilize your bullets a bit more and give you better accuracy.

    It seems strange that all of your loads were running at 1700 fps, regardless of bullet weight.

    The other 299,300,000 people can have it.

    Noone has a more intimate understanding of, or deeper appreciation for freedom, than a soldier who has fought for it in a country where it does not exist.

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