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Reloading 148 HBWC

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mikemyers
Dr.Don
shoot308
Kp321
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Post by Foundryratjim Mon Mar 21, 2022 5:50 pm

I am using a Dillon press. I have just got and set up one of photo escape's PTU for this bullet. I am using zero bullets. I have the press set up so that I can push the bullet into the case by hand. The finished round will only go about 1/3 of it's length into my gage, about halfway into my GP100 cylinder and odly enough drops into my Model 52's chamber. I set up a Lee factory crimp die on another press and ran the rounds through it but nothing changed. What am I missing or doing wrong??

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Post by DA/SA Mon Mar 21, 2022 6:06 pm

Sounds like the PTU may be expanding the case farther down than it needs to be. Some cases don't have the depth of others before the case wall starts to get thicker. Measure the case along it's length to see if it has a slightly bulged area just past where the projectile ends.

Or color the case with a Sharpie and insert it into your GP-100 and turn it a little. Pull it out and you'll see where it is contacting the cylinder wall.

I shortened the PTU to the same length as the HBWC that I was using so it didn't expand the case any farther down than it needed to be.

Just something to check.
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Post by Foundryratjim Mon Mar 21, 2022 6:19 pm

There is a bulge. At the bulge it measures .391, the space between the bulge and case rim measures .375Reloading 148 HBWC Pxl_2010

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Post by Dcforman Mon Mar 21, 2022 6:39 pm

Any chance you're using +P cases? What's the headstamp? Does look like you're expanding too deep. I like to have it set so I can insert the bullet only about 80-90% of the way before I meet resistance, and then allow the seating die to finish it.

Dave

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Post by Foundryratjim Mon Mar 21, 2022 6:59 pm

They aren't stamped +p. They are mixed headstamp. I will try what you say tomorrow morning and post my results. Having the press seat the bullet the last bit won't deform the hollow base?

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Post by PhotoEscape Mon Mar 21, 2022 7:16 pm

Watching Smile!  The point is, James, - you can check cases with 0.355"+ plug, and if plug doesn't go to about 0.625" depth without obstruction you can safely relegate those cases to loading your DR ammo.  Also, check wall thickness of the cases, - if case has wall thickness is over 0.009" (i.e. 0.011"), same as above.  FCD with such cases will swag the squirt of HBWC bullet, and hence accuracy will be dismal.  If you do not have proper tools, PTU can be used for identifying cases that are not suited for loading HBWC.  If you can setup toolhead that will just do sizing and then powder drop WITHOUT actually dropping powder, but just expanding cases, any case that has bulge - relegate to DR ammo.

AP
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Post by Foundryratjim Mon Mar 21, 2022 7:34 pm

I don't have gage plugs but i can figure out doing it with the press. When brass becomes available again what do i buy that will work? In the past I have bought starline for any caliber.   Jim B.

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Post by DA/SA Mon Mar 21, 2022 8:02 pm

Foundryratjim wrote:They aren't stamped +p. They are mixed headstamp. I will try what you say tomorrow morning and post my results. Having the press seat the bullet the last bit won't deform the hollow base?

By not pushing the PTU into the case as far, you will loose your case mouth flare. That will also take the fun out of reloading them.

I load Winchester and Federal cases, as they both work fine. (for me) I use PD and Zero HBWC's, so Zero get's Winchester and PD gets Federal for ease of identification.
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Post by dannyd93140 Mon Mar 21, 2022 9:12 pm

What kind of resizing die are you using?
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Post by Foundryratjim Mon Mar 21, 2022 10:08 pm

dannyd93140 wrote:What kind of resizing die are you using?
Dillon die set.

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Post by mspingeld Tue Mar 22, 2022 8:52 am

Excuse my ignorance; what is a .355 plug and where can I get one?

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Post by PhotoEscape Tue Mar 22, 2022 9:01 am

Here is example:

https://smile.amazon.com/Vermont-Gage-911135500-0-355-Black/dp/B088K9HN12/ref=sr_1_10_sspa?crid=3RPFGRS2A8ETP&keywords=0.355%22+gage&qid=1647957398&sprefix=0.355+gage%2Caps%2C57&sr=8-10-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUEzTkU0WVlKVTM0T0g2JmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwODA0Nzg2RjgwUzVQU0xZTzBKJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTAwOTUzMzgzNjdJVlNHOVpMRDFJJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfbXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

I suggest getting one in plus or no-go size.

AP
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Post by mspingeld Tue Mar 22, 2022 9:18 am

Plus? No go? Isn't .355 specific?

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Post by Wobbley Tue Mar 22, 2022 10:22 am

Plus no-go is what YOU decide.  Gage manufacturers make sizes.   

That said, I feel that if your getting case bulges to .391, then something in your set up is wrong.  38 Special Cases vary quite a bit in cylinder portion on the internals.  That also said, I’ve gotten 10 ring sized groups at 25 yards using +p+ cases and they’re very thick!   My guess is that your dies are not keeping things in line at all.  Dillon sizing dies are notorious for over-sizing brass.  Dillon presses are also not known for precise alignment of tool head to shell plate.  So let the tool head float.  

At this point, I’d single stage your WC ammo so you can isolate which stage is causing the issue.  Any other answer is guesswork.
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Post by Foundryratjim Tue Mar 22, 2022 10:52 am

I have been using the same dies to load DEWC and have had no issues or bulges. this was with the Dillon ptu. I suspect I may be inserting the photo escape ptu too far. I am heading out to my shop now to do some measuring and experimenting. I will post what i find. Thanks to everyone who has taken time to reply. I am learning a lot.

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Post by dannyd93140 Tue Mar 22, 2022 11:12 am

Foundryratjim wrote:
dannyd93140 wrote:What kind of resizing die are you using?
Dillon die set.

you may need to try a different sizing die; went with a Redding duel ring die when they come out cured all the problems I ever had with 38/357 loading.
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Post by fc60 Tue Mar 22, 2022 11:51 am

Greetings,

Try using a 38 Super Carbide Sizing die. Your sized cases should measure about 0.377".

Then, just flare the case mouth.

The bullet should start and press in with finger pressure about half way.

Cycle the press to finish seating.

The bulge should not appear; but, with thick walled cases the hollow base will collapse slightly.

It is difficult to find 38 Special brass that is uniform in wall thickness the entire length of the HBWC bullet.

Use PhotoEscape's pin check to gauge your brass. Slip it in until it stops and with a fine Sharpie pen mark a ring around the case mouth.

Next, compare the Zero bullet to the pin observing where the Sharpie line is in relation to the bullet.

It also helps to sort your cases by head stamp.

Cheers,

Dave
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Post by Foundryratjim Tue Mar 22, 2022 12:13 pm

PhotoEscape wrote:Watching Smile!  The point is, James, - you can check cases with 0.355"+ plug, and if plug doesn't go to about 0.625" depth without obstruction you can safely relegate those cases to loading your DR ammo.  Also, check wall thickness of the cases, - if case has wall thickness is over 0.009" (i.e. 0.011"), same as above.  FCD with such cases will swag the squirt of HBWC bullet, and hence accuracy will be dismal.  If you do not have proper tools, PTU can be used for identifying cases that are not suited for loading HBWC.  If you can setup toolhead that will just do sizing and then powder drop WITHOUT actually dropping powder, but just expanding cases, any case that has bulge - relegate to DR ammo.

AP
I have adjusted the PTU so that I can insert the bullet by my finger and it stops perfectly flush with the top of the case. So far only Remington and Federal have passed the test. Most of what I have so far are these and they don't. Who makes these?Reloading 148 HBWC Pxl_2013

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Post by Kp321 Tue Mar 22, 2022 12:42 pm

You are holding a Winchester GI case. They are thicker than commercial brass and are not suitable for HBWC loading. I use nothing but RP commercial brass for wadcutter loads and have about 100 that were originally loaded with factory wadcutters. These have two cannelures on the case body and are thin and uniform.

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Post by Foundryratjim Tue Mar 22, 2022 12:54 pm

Kp321 wrote:You are holding a Winchester GI case. They are thicker than commercial brass and are not suitable for HBWC loading. I use nothing but RP commercial brass for wadcutter loads and have about 100 that were originally loaded with factory wadcutters. These have two cannelures on the case body and are thin and uniform.
I have a few of those so far....

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Post by PhotoEscape Tue Mar 22, 2022 1:13 pm

Wobbley wrote:Plus no-go is what YOU decide.  Gage manufacturers make sizes.   
I’ve gotten 10 ring sized groups at 25 yards using +p+ cases and they’re very thick!   My guess is that your dies are not keeping things in line at all.  Dillon sizing dies are notorious for over-sizing brass.  Dillon presses are also not known for precise alignment of tool head to shell plate.  So let the tool head float. 

I am an OPPONENT of this "tool head float" notion.  TOTALLY!  With 4-5 stations on Dillon presses having dies locked letting tool head float WILL NOT provide for loading consistent ammo.  You will not know which station at any given time forces the flow of tool head! At one time it can be Sizing, at another Crimping, etc.  IMO, tool heads should be locked tight and do not move, - look at the golden standard for presses of all times - Star Reloaders.  Nothing is moving there, nothing is floating on tool heads.  Same on 1050/1100s.  Dillon provides tools for platform alignment - https://www.dillonprecision.com/rl-550-series-xl-650-platform-alignment-tool_8_6_26408.html  I suggest using it WITH TOOL HEAD LOCKED.  Once you align platform against tool head there is no need for floating of anything.  Even if you are using multiple tool heads populated with dies, you still should be fine.  Yes, Dillon's tool heads are not milled to the highest precision, - I put few of them through Comparator and compared to ones machined by Whidden and Jofer (https://joferusa.com/collections/dillon-xl-650).  Both are milled more precise than Dillon's.  However difference is in minute or so between stations, and will not affect alignment. 

If you insist on floating something, you might want to check Whidden's tool head with two floating stations, - sizing and seating.  https://uniquetek.com/product/T1389 or https://www.whiddengunworks.com/dillon-toolheads/  Still I'd recommend locking entire tool head.  UniqueTek has relatively inexpensive kit for this purpose.   https://uniquetek.com/product/T1230 

Now, holding 10 ring at 25Y is only acceptable for 25Y.  It can't be a measuring stick for loading BE ammo, IMHO, unless you never shoot at 50Y.

All of the above is IN MY OPINION!

AP
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Post by Foundryratjim Tue Mar 22, 2022 1:38 pm

I would agree that floating the tool head would not be good with four operations going at one time. I believe my problem was lack of knowledge of the different case dimensions out there and having never loaded the hollow base bullet before.

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Post by dannyd93140 Tue Mar 22, 2022 1:56 pm

Those are the roughest cases to use, after loading 67,163 rounds of 38 special I have learned to avoid those most any other case works but those have always been painful.


I owned a 550 years ago when they first came out and I use shim stock to stop the movement.
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Post by Wobbley Tue Mar 22, 2022 6:53 pm

Foundryratjim wrote:
PhotoEscape wrote:Watching Smile!  The point is, James, - you can check cases with 0.355"+ plug, and if plug doesn't go to about 0.625" depth without obstruction you can safely relegate those cases to loading your DR ammo.  Also, check wall thickness of the cases, - if case has wall thickness is over 0.009" (i.e. 0.011"), same as above.  FCD with such cases will swag the squirt of HBWC bullet, and hence accuracy will be dismal.  If you do not have proper tools, PTU can be used for identifying cases that are not suited for loading HBWC.  If you can setup toolhead that will just do sizing and then powder drop WITHOUT actually dropping powder, but just expanding cases, any case that has bulge - relegate to DR ammo.

AP
I have adjusted the PTU so that I can insert the bullet by my finger and it stops perfectly flush with the top of the case. So far only Remington and Federal have passed the test. Most of what I have so far are these and they don't. Who makes these?Reloading 148 HBWC Pxl_2013
What you have is a Western Cartridge Company “military” case.  There were a LOT of these sold as “USA” branded ammunition back then which became “Winchester White box”.  Just because it said “WCC” doesn’t necessarily mean it was military issue.  But it WAS from the military production tooling.

All that said, I don’t have enough of these to get meaningful data, but I do have enough WCC +P+, Winchester, W-W, and Winchester +P headstamps that I have measured.  The case wall thickness at the mouth is .0105 for +P compared to .0096 for non-+P.   The difference is in the length of the “cylinder” portion of the case wall.  38 Special cases vary a lot between headstamps.  The major difference is between +P and non-+P.  Winchester from Wadcutter ammo had an average cylinder of .61 whereas the +P and +P+ was .4.  

Remington brass from Wadcutter ammo measured .56.  From non-Wadcutter ammo measured .55.  Essentially no difference.  This is pretty much across the brands.  There is no difference between 38 special brass from non-Wadcutter ammo and Wadcutter ammo.  Let me repeat that THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BRASS FOR REGULAR 38 SPECIAL AMMUNITION AND WADCUTTER AMMUNITION IN ANY PARTICULAR BRAND.   

There IS a difference between brands.  I’ve attached a summary chart.Reloading 148 HBWC 49341610
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Post by shoot308 Tue Mar 22, 2022 10:06 pm

If you do happen to size the skirt in seating doesn't the hollow base make up for that? Thought that was the whole point of hollow bases. If thats the case what difference does it make on the brass you use?

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