Reloading for the M52

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Reloading for the M52

Post by C.Perkins on Sat Jul 26, 2014 3:57 pm

When I first got into shooting these great guns I would get an alibi once in awhile with my reloads and even some factory target ammo from the big three.
Had a batch of factory Remington that just would not run, come to find out the ammo was loaded a tad too long to function smoothly in the M52 magazines(would have been fine in a revolver of coarse).Took what I had left and reseated them .020" deeper and all functioned flawlessly.
This got me to testing variables and come to what I do now for the M52.
Thought I would share my experiences and anyone else may have some points to share also.

First thing is I only use Remington brass, it is the thinnest so it will not swage the soft lead heads as much I believe.
Brass must be once fired because of what I do next.
Deprime, resize and then trim the cases to 1.130" (I know it is a bit, probably .025" for some cases).
After continuous reloading my cases have shrunk but stay in the 1.120"- 1.125" range.
I seat my heads so that I have .020" of shoulder sticking out past the case mouth.
I use the Lee factory crimp die set to crimp at .370"
My thinking is that once these are all loaded they are shorter than a standard load which will pretty much guarantee that they will feed out of the magazine without binding and also like the bit of lead exposed with the crimp to allow smoother feeding.

I use Bullseye powder and weigh each charge at 2.8 grains.
Scales are not perfect but if it says 2.7 or 2.9 or starts to shift between a tenth of a grain, it does not go into the case.
A tenth of a grain is 4% and I believe consistency is your best bet at the long line more so with such a light load.

Using Winchester small pistol and small pistol magnum primers.
Really saw no difference in performance but do think the Bullseye burns more complete using the magnum primers.

Have only been using Remington heads but have acquired some Speer and Hornady to work with in my spare time.

Just purchased a Lyman "M" die a few weeks ago and loaded some rounds for the short coarse match tomorrow.
The heads do go in straighter and a bit easier with no visible coke bottling and no speed bump feeling when going through the Lee FCD. With time will see how the "M" die stacks up. Seems like a good concept, makes sense for soft lead heads.

I may have left something out or you may have a question or something to share also.
Just wanted to strike up some discussion.
Since doing the above procedures have yet to have another alibi in well over a year. (I probably just jinxed myself on that statement).

Good shooting everyone.

Clarence

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Re: Reloading for the M52

Post by Virgil Kane on Sat Jul 26, 2014 6:12 pm

I do exactly the same as Clarance with my 52-2. Only exception are I use Remington SP primers, crimp with a Lee taper crimp die just to get the flare out and use the Lee FCD only to make sure the case is going to chamber OK, not for crimping.

Doing this has stopped my alibi's with this 52 for the last 3 years.


Virgil

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Re: Reloading for the M52

Post by noylj on Sun Aug 03, 2014 5:11 pm

By "heads," I assume you mean the bullet
For me, the following is my M52 loading procedure:
Do not trim cases
Do not resize cases
Do use R.P. Cases
Do use Rem 148gn HBWC bullets (heads?)
Do not be shy about expanding and flaring the case mouth--you want an excess flare to be sure bullet is straight and seating distance is short
Seat so bullet is just below case mouth
Crimp with Redding Profile Crimp Die

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.354 bullets in M52

Post by Constable on Thu Aug 28, 2014 12:07 pm

Several years ago I shot a S&W52 in bullseye matches.  I didn't like the bulge in the factory brass when loading .357 WC.  I tried a combination of military brass which seemed much thicker, Saeco 148g cast WC in a .354 mold.  The .354 bullet matched the M52 bore size.  The smaller bullets allowed the loaded round to look like a factory round, no bulging.  They were very accurate and functioned perfectly.  The powder was 2.8 g of bullseye.

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Re: Reloading for the M52

Post by james r chapman on Thu Aug 28, 2014 2:05 pm

Old school....

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Re: Reloading for the M52

Post by Virgil Kane on Thu Aug 28, 2014 2:10 pm

james r chapman wrote:Old school....
Old school is kool

 

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Re: Reloading for the M52

Post by james r chapman on Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:23 pm


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Re: Reloading for the M52

Post by AllAces on Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:54 pm

As Clarance says, getting the ammo to feed out of the magazine is just as important as making sure the rounds fit the M52 chamber. I've been using Zero swaged HBWC bullets, but plan to load and test some Penn 148 gr wadcutters over the next few months. I will post the results here.

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Re: Reloading for the M52

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