Saturday, January 20, 2007

New Bullets

As many of you know, I am a fan of cast bullets. In the slower range of cartridges, most don't travel downrange much faster than 2000 fps. They use the weight of the bullet and the design of the projectile to impart shock, rather than the velocity.

Lots of game has been killed by a big cast bullet. Until the late 1800's all game was killed with a slow-moving cast bullet.

The guys over at the Cast Boolits forum have learned that Lee Precision will make a custom cast bullet mold and the members there usually have a couple of group buys going. These bullet molds are not "off the shelf" but are custom cut based on the wishes of the customers. We find that they make very good bullets.

Recently, the guys there have been doing a group buy on a .35 caliber, 180 grain bullet. It has tumble-lube grooves and uses a gas check. It is designed for the .35 Remington, one of my favorite calibers. This mold will let me make ammo for about half as much money as I spend now, which is to say about 1/4 as much as factory ammunition. It might even be good for heavy bullet loads in the .357 magnum.

It's a design with a wide flat nose. Pushed to 1900 fps, it oughta hit like the Hammer of Thor. I've already got a .358 sizing die, which I use for my pistol cartridges.

I mailed my check this morning. Working up loads for this bullet ought to be a lot of fun.


Anonymous said...

Slightly off topic question: Are cast bullet lube-sizer dies interchangeable among machines like regular reloading dies are among different brand presses? Or are there several different standards?

I'm pretty sure that RCBS and Lyman lube-sizer dies interchange, but I'm not sure about the rest.

Anonymous said...

Lee push-through sizing dies have made the old kind obsolete. But, yes, RCBS and Lyman will interchange.

Rivrdog said...

180-gr truncated cone....hmmmmm....has .357 Magnum Lever Action written all over it.

Any guesses as to what it'll do in a 16" barrel?

Sounds like a hog killa, to say the least.

Anonymous said...

Dog, I'd guess 1650 fps in a 16" 357 levergun. The nose is too long to feed in a levergun, I suspect. Might feed in a M94 but not in a M92.

Anonymous said...

that does look like a good mag round keep us posted on that one

Matt G said...

Hm. I may get a coupla hundred, myself.

I like long-range handgunning with N frames and heavy bullets.

And.. and... okay, I'll just admit it: I'm going to load up a bunch of 'em in reduced loads in my .35 Whelen Springfield. John Shirley loved shooting it with my reduced-load 180g XTP handloads at about 1800-2000 fps. I defy you to find me a deer in the world that wouldn't drop, and the load is soooo comfy and quiet to shoot.