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HELP with leading in Model 52-2 barrel

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96wa6
Dave Glenn
Kp321
r_zerr
Lamar H
RodJ
Dcforman
chiz1180
Foundryratjim
bruce martindale
djw1cav
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HELP with leading in Model 52-2 barrel Empty HELP with leading in Model 52-2 barrel

Post by djw1cav Mon Jan 02, 2023 10:13 am

Does anyone have a load for the 148g HBWC that does not cause leading in model 52-2 barrel?   I have tried everything I can think of to stop the leading and nothing is working.  I have read every post on loading the 148g HBWC and tried many of the suggestions yet nothing I try seems to help.  The lead starts at the case mouth and goes onto the rifling. My most recent attempt is with a new expanding die.  It loads perfectly but I still get leading.  I am using a cheap bore scope to check for leading.  Perhaps looking too closely is the problem?


 I have tried lubing my zero bullets with "White ALOX" and that did not fix the problem.
  
I have tried unsized cases and was able to push the bullets in all the way (and sometimes too far) by hand.  I consider that unsafe and did not fire those.

I also tried sizing with a 38 auto die.  Again the bullet pushed in too far by hand.

I am using zero bullets.  I tried lubing with White ALOX with no improvement in leading.

My process is
1.  Wet clean in tumbler with soap and no pins.
2.  de-prime and size case
3.  Tumble with pins and soap and lemi shine, then allow to dry.
4.  Expand with 38special die
5.  powder drop
6.  powder check
7.  insert with Redding micrometer die
8.  Profile crimp with Redding micrometer die.

Any help or comments would be appreciated.
Thanks,
Doug W.

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Post by bruce martindale Mon Jan 02, 2023 11:16 am

Why do you think the unsized cases are unsafe?

The crimp should bite into the tip of the bullet but it's not unsafe if they seat deeper if loose provided that it's not an over load in the first place.It's not an obstruction. In a revolver, they could back out under recoil and jam the gun. You didn't give a load. What is it? The gun needs light loads such as 2.8 BE, 2.7 WST, 3.2-231

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Post by Foundryratjim Mon Jan 02, 2023 11:52 am

I have put over a 1000 zero HBWC through mine with 2.8 gr. of B.E. with no issues....

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Post by chiz1180 Mon Jan 02, 2023 1:37 pm

bruce martindale wrote:Why do you think the unsized cases are unsafe?

The crimp should bite into the tip of the bullet but it's not unsafe if they seat deeper if loose provided that it's not an over load in the first place.It's not an obstruction. In a revolver, they could back out under recoil and jam the gun. You didn't give a load. What is it? The gun needs light loads such as 2.8 BE, 2.7 WST, 3.2-231
If the bullet is able to seat deeper unintentionally it causes the load to be inconsistent, equally problematic to leading.
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Post by djw1cav Mon Jan 02, 2023 1:45 pm

Foundryratjim wrote:I have put over a 1000 zero HBWC through mine with 2.8 gr. of B.E. with no issues....

its good to know that its possible to load without leading.  What do you do for a sizing die?  How about expanding die?  Do you light crimp or heavy crimp?
Doug W.

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Post by Dcforman Mon Jan 02, 2023 2:15 pm

Definitely the PhotoEscape expander. Link to his store on the front page. I had leading issues even using his expander until I started doing a second expansion with a PTX to flair the mouth a touch. Was scraping off too much lube during seating.

Dave

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Post by RodJ Mon Jan 02, 2023 3:30 pm

Might be a question but have you tried these loads in a revolver and if so same problem?  What’s the load data you’re using?

edit- have you tried a different crimp die? Something sounds like the base of the bullet is a bit squished. 

I’ll be curious to find out what’s going on.

RodJ

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Post by djw1cav Mon Jan 02, 2023 4:50 pm

RodJ wrote:Might be a question but have you tried these loads in a revolver and if so same problem?  What’s the load data you’re using?

edit- have you tried a different crimp die? Something sounds like the base of the bullet is a bit squished. 

I’ll be curious to find out what’s going on.

Rod
The next time I go to the range I will try some rounds that have caused leading problems in my revolver.

If I can find my Lee roll crimp die that I will make some now ant try them tomorrow.  I go to an outdoor range and tomorrow is supposed to be in the 60's.  For the Chicago area that may be a record.
Doug

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Post by RodJ Mon Jan 02, 2023 5:32 pm

*my sentence should have said “might be a silly question but…”

I’ve been reloading on and off for years but I’m no expert in diagnosing leading. Just asking questions that come to mind. Be careful in the heat, wear loose clothes and drink plenty of water. Know the signs of heat stroke! 😂

RodJ

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Post by Lamar H Mon Jan 02, 2023 7:33 pm

Standard resize, Lee powder drop, Lyman seater, .003-.004 Lee or RCBS taper crimp
did it for me using Remington 148hbwc or local hard cast 148  not double endied wc.
Remington .358 Hard cast .357

Lamar H

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Post by Foundryratjim Mon Jan 02, 2023 7:46 pm

If you have some time here is a thread that I started when I started on my journey of reloading for my model 52-2.
https://www.bullseyeforum.net/t19125-reloading-148-hbwc

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Post by r_zerr Tue Jan 03, 2023 12:25 pm

What also needs to be known is:
Actual barrel diameter ( slug it and take it to someone who has an optical comparator, A surface plate, or a special v- micrometer to measure 5 groove barrels)
Actual diameter of size bullets being used
And finally, the load and ideally a muzzle velocity.





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Post by Kp321 Wed Jan 04, 2023 8:45 am

You don’t mention what brass you are using. I use RP brass exclusively in my 52-1. It is consistent and thinner than some. I have a couple of hundred rounds of wadcutter brass with the three cannelures that I save for matches. I know for sure it is thin to the bottom of the bullet. I am lucky enough to have a small stash of Remington bullets with the ugly black lube that do not lead in my pistol.

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Post by chiz1180 Wed Jan 04, 2023 10:40 am

Kp321 wrote:You don’t mention what brass you are using. I use RP brass exclusively in my 52-1. It is consistent and thinner than some. I have a couple of hundred rounds of wadcutter brass with the three cannelures that I save for matches. I know for sure it is thin to the bottom of the bullet. I am lucky enough to have a small stash of Remington bullets with the ugly black lube that do not lead in my pistol.
I think consistency of the brass is more important than if it was factory wadcutter, I have had equally good results with 'wadcutter' brass and starline. Ideally the batch of brass you are loading is all of the same length, this will assure consistent expansion and crimp across the batch of ammo. I don't think it is worth the effort to trim cases, but I do tend to keep better track of my 38spl cases than I do for 45. I tend to load 38 in batches of 100 and typically keep the brass sorted by batch for this reason. 

As Dave pointed out earlier, expansion is critical, I also use a dedicated expansion die (old RCBS die from a set labeled for full wadcutters, I have a photoescape unit, but the RCBS set was my grandfathers) as well as a PTX expander in my powder measure. 

I also take extra care in placing the bullet in the expanded case, often spinning the case to make sure the bullet is sitting square. Side note, be sure that your shell plate and dies are square.

38 hbwc takes more attention to detail to load, I think we are often spoiled by how much more forgiving 45 is by comparison. For what it is worth, it takes me 2x as much time to load 38 hbwc than 45.
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Post by djw1cav Wed Jan 04, 2023 10:51 am

I went to the range yesterday to test some reloaded 148g HBWC ammunition. I brought three guns and tested 3 different loads. Results are below. My take away from the range session and from comments on this forum is: “When reloading the 148g HBWC for a SW model 52/ the best accuracy and least amount of leading will be obtained when maintain the original bullet diameter as closely as possible”. This is not new, it has just become clear to me. In the past I have focused on things like crimp, case selection, powder charge, velocity, sizing and seating dies etc. Now I have one more piece to the puzzle.


One other thing that is bothering me is barrel erosion on my model 52. One of my barrels is extremely rough between the case mouth and where the lands start. This is where all of the leading begins. I am not sure if is from machining or barrel erosion. Perhaps this barrel will lead no matter what? Is this normal?


Doug W.


Test no 1.
zero 148g HBWC bullet with factory lube
Winchester case sized with Lee 38 special sizing die
2.65g WST
Case expanded and flared with .359/.358 stepped expanding plug (similar to NOE Plugs)
Bullet seated flush (bullet could only be pushed in 3/16” by hand)
Light crimp (.371) with Redding Profile crimp die
test results:
39 rounds fired
10 shot 25 yard group from bags was 4.42”, avg velocity 736ft/sec, std dev 11.7
Significant barrel leading in front of case mouth and onto lands. Pistol used was my “old” model 52-2



Test no 2.
Same parameters as above except:
1. Star cases (they are similar in case wall thickness to Winchester) sized with 38 auto sizing die.
2. Bullet seated flush (bullet could be seated all of the way by hand but I finished with seating die).
Test results:
38 rounds fired
10 shot 25 yard group from bags was 2.0”, avg velocity705, std dev 24.4
Some leading, about ½ as much as above. Pistol used was my “new” model 52-2



Test no 3.
Zero bullets know to cause significant leading in my both my model 52”s.
Pistol was a 38 special revolver
Test results:
35 rounds fired.
avg velocity 697, std dev 12
Moderate amount of leading was observed in beginning of barrel.


Note: all guns were clean and lead free to start tests

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Post by djw1cav Wed Jan 04, 2023 11:05 am

Kp321 wrote:You don’t mention what brass you are using. I use RP brass exclusively in my 52-1. It is consistent and thinner than some. I have a couple of hundred rounds of wadcutter brass with the three cannelures that I save for matches. I know for sure it is thin to the bottom of the bullet. I am lucky enough to have a small stash of Remington bullets with the ugly black lube that do not lead in my pistol.

I found that RP and federal brass is thinner than most other cases.  When I was loading Remington bullets I used RP brass exclusively.  I found that the Remington bullet and RP brass worked very well together.  I also sized them with a Lee 38 auto sizing die which gave a larger case ID to accommodate the Remington bullet. 
I still have 1900 Remington bullets left but I am saving them, waiting for my scores to improve. Smile  

Doug W.

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Post by bruce martindale Wed Jan 04, 2023 11:45 am

You say your barrel is rough, while damage is unlikely, a more common issue is baked in lead; very stubborn to remove. BTDT

I suggest firebrushing; with bbl in hand run a low conical flame from a propane torch up the tube for 5 seconds then brush it and inspect. I'm betting you'll see a ton of smeared lead in the barrel. Patch it out with solvent and repeat

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Post by bruce martindale Wed Jan 04, 2023 11:46 am

I brush in and out near the chamber vigorously . This requires a slightly worn brush as a new one won't reverse.

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Post by djw1cav Wed Jan 04, 2023 11:50 am

bruce martindale wrote:You say your barrel is rough, while damage is unlikely, a more common issue is baked in lead; very stubborn to remove. BTDT

I suggest firebrushing; with bbl in hand run a low conical flame from a propane torch up the tube for 5 seconds then brush it and inspect. I'm betting you'll see a ton of smeared lead in the barrel. Patch it out with solvent and repeat

Bruce,
Thanks for the tip.  I will try firebrushing with a worn brush.
Doug W.

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Post by djw1cav Sat Jan 07, 2023 12:33 pm

r_zerr wrote:What also needs to be known is:
Actual barrel diameter ( slug it and take it to someone who has an optical comparator, A surface plate, or a special v- micrometer to measure 5 groove barrels)
Actual diameter of size bullets being used
And finally, the load and ideally a muzzle velocity.




Thanks for you feed back.
I have never slugged a barrel but I am sure I can figure it out.  The internet is a great source.  But, even if I slugged the barrel I dont know that the resulting dimensions mean in relation to my bullet.  Can you guide me to some information on this?

The bullet diameter is .358"

The average velocity is around 705 with a high of 743 and low of 666.  (not a good std deviation).

Doug W.

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Post by djw1cav Sat Jan 07, 2023 12:44 pm

bruce martindale wrote:You say your barrel is rough, while damage is unlikely, a more common issue is baked in lead; very stubborn to remove. BTDT

I suggest firebrushing; with bbl in hand run a low conical flame from a propane torch up the tube for 5 seconds then brush it and inspect. I'm betting you'll see a ton of smeared lead in the barrel. Patch it out with solvent and repeat

Bruce,
The area barrel that appeared to be eroded is just in front of the case mouth leading up to the grooves.  (this is a small area).  After much cleaning I found that the barrel is not as rough as I thought.  The "roughness" was mostly lead and carbon.  Once I get the bore perfectly clean is there anything that you use to treat the bore before shooting again? 
Doug

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Post by bruce martindale Sat Jan 07, 2023 1:51 pm

I would simply oil it with a patch. In my opinion, lube failure is common in bullets with long bearing surfaces. Even when the bullet is larger than the bore (52s tend to run .355) Get some tumble lube like Lee Liquid Alox, Rooster jacket or Lars 45-45-10. Bagge the bullets, squit some lube, twist bag shut with lots of air and shake.

Let dry then load. Good luck

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Post by Dave Glenn Thu Jan 12, 2023 4:42 pm

Sounds like you changed everything but the bullet. I've had good luck with " Extreme 148 copper plated wad cutter ".

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Post by 96wa6 Thu Jan 12, 2023 5:12 pm

I did not see you mention that you tried Bullseye powder (aka "BE"). If I missed it, I apologize. If not, I suggest that you make that one change and see what happens. 

I have friends who have had leading problems, mostly in .45 ACP, and when they switched to BE, problem solved. I have never used anything else in my several 52s, and I have never had a leading problem. It could be my guns versus your gun, but you won't know until you try it. And keep it slow. My test targets range from 2.5 grains to 2.8 grains. Most of the groups are either all shots overlapping or very close to it, all at 50'. I have one test target (gun was worked on so it was tested after) shot with W231 at 50 yards, with 10 shots spanning 2.1" center to center.

All of my cases were full-length sized, belled, and the bullets were visible through the brass when seated. All bullets were so-barely-below flush-seated with a moderate roll crimp. I did NOTHING special in reloading — mixed cases but mostly R-P, Dillon dies on a 650, and all with WSP primers. 

Your mileage may vary.

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Post by 96wa6 Thu Jan 12, 2023 5:13 pm

Sorry, I just found my detailed records; I did not seat below flush.

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