Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

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Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

Post by inthebeech on 9/25/2012, 11:56 am

I just quit casting my own 148gr WC's which of course I've had the ability to size to any diameter. After slugging my M-14 bore (groove) and also measuring cylinder throats, and then confirming by seeing no leading in the barrel, I settled long ago on .359 sized bullets (Lyman #2 alloy which is of medium hardness at BHN 12'ish). I could ge through a fair amount of shooting without serious build up with .358's but they were slightly less than ideal.

Now that I've retired my melting pot, to put more time in at the range (though my competitive days are over), I just placed an order for some Magnus 148's, both HBWC and DEWC. They are listed at .357 and I am wondering if I am going to be back fighting lead build up. Perhaps the swaged bullets behave differently and it is not as much of a concern? I was wondering how you wheelgunners who have had good success with the S&W and its 18 inch twist, made these aparently common .357 diameter slugs shot.

Input pease?


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Re: Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

Post by Paper-Puncher on 9/25/2012, 9:42 pm


Althought I dont shoot a 14...I use a ruger GP-100.....Ive tryed the Magnus 148's in both types....I had more of a leading issue with them....but not in the barrel but at the forceing cone only barrel stays pretty free of lead....The DEWC's seemed to be harder and would lead my cylinders as well...Ive pretty much just stayed with .358 Horniday HBWC's since.....The magnus bullets are good quality and seem to shoot fine but the forcing cone was pretty smeared ofter 30-50 rds....I like the .358 hornidays as they just seem better for me......I wish I would have seen this post before you ordered as I have about 100 HBWC's I would have given you for testing before you ordered.......


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Re: Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

Post by Jerry Keefer on 9/26/2012, 7:44 am

One of the benefits of Taylor Throats, is the major reduction of leading. Quality cast bullets are far less prone to transfer surface lead than swaged.. I would try Penn Bullets in Pa. I never see lead transfer from Bob's .45 bullets, and I comsume a few number yearly in testing, and customer usage.

Jerry Keefer

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Re: Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

Post by buttstock on 9/30/2012, 7:22 pm

I too had some leading issues with some .357" 148 grain HBWC. I think they were made by Delta or Precision. They came with the supposedly higher quality "match lube", but I had lead build up in the first inch of my SW model 14 with 50-100 rounds.

Before that, like you, I shot home-cast (wheel weight alloy) flat base wadcutter (Ideal 358495), and had good accuracy, and no leading. I lubed them in my .360" diameter lubrisizer die, and really only lubed them (cast diameter was in the .359++ range). If anything, I rounded some of them out while lubing.

I came across a few thousand hbwc bullets in .357 with the "match lube." I tried them, and got heavy leading withing 50 rounds. I seemed to have solved the problem by putting a coat of Lee liquid lube on the HBWC (and letting them dry before loading). Perhaps it was the slightly larger diameter, or more lube, but the leading went away. Accuracy was better during the practice (or more properly stated, "didn't degrade" as more rounds were fired). Five shots, rested, two-hand hold, would group in a less than an inch (essetially a near ragged hole), with the "double lubed" .357" 148 swaged HBWC. Accuracy without the double lube was ok at first, then quickly get worse (2-3"+ at 50 ft when I would call "enough of this.")

My load was 2.50 and 2.75 grains of Bullseye. 2.5 grains was slight better than 2.75 g. Distance tested (shot and practiced) was 50 ft indoor at our winter international centerfire postal league.

The extra coating of Lee Liquid Lube worked for me to eliminate the leading.


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Re: Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

Post by xring2245 on 9/30/2012, 8:30 pm

Leading is more of a problem with undersized bullets than with soft bullets. Check your bore and size .001" over. Remington WCs are the largest I have encountered, .360", and they shoot well in my M14, M19, and Clark M1911. Generally, though, I cast my own and size them for the gun I will be shooting. The S&Ws use .358" diameter bullets and the Clark can use either .357" or .358" bullets.

I spent time on this issue and it seems to have paid off for me. For those who do not cast, get some sample bullets from bullet manufacturers (swaged and cast) and see what does best in your gun.



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Re: Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

Post by james r chapman on 2/23/2013, 5:40 pm

My leading problems are always with the cylinder throat and not the barrel.

I shoot Magnus 148 hbwc's, they shoot x's and I just brass brush the throats when I'm done shooting...
james r chapman

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Re: Leading in 38 revolvers with commercial HBWC and DEWC's

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