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Old 01-11-2022, 01:31 PM
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Default Fun with Wadcutters!

"Idle hands are the Devil's playground"

So I was bored the other day and decided to order DEWCs for .38 Spl (yawn ), .44 Spl/Mag (hmmm ), and .45 ACP (wait, what?!? ).

But wait, there's more - they're from Matt's Bullets, and not your everyday WCs:
  • .38 are 75grains
  • .44 are 150 grains
  • .45 are 165 grains
I went with the lightest weight bullets in each bore size due to reduced price, seeking super-light recoil, and just to be weird .

I've been loading 148 grain HBWCs (lead) and DEWCs (lead and plated) in .38 Spl for a long time. I became addicted to clean-cut round holes in targets, and them sometimes going slow enough (600 +/- fps) that with the sun behind me, I could watch them all the way to the target. Fun.

Recently acquiring a S&W 629, and a 625 a year or so ago, I thought why not load some DEWC "fatties" for those. I loaded 30 rounds for each in three graduated charge weights of IMR Target. I'll be testing them through a chrono off sandbags later this week and report my findings.

[sorry for sideways pic]
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Last edited by AreWeNotMen?; 01-11-2022 at 02:07 PM. Reason: clarity
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  #2  
Old 01-11-2022, 02:50 PM
Trooperdan Trooperdan is offline
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And in .38, you might be able to load two bullets in one case!
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Old 01-11-2022, 03:01 PM
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I've gone to using 105 grain SWC's, as well as 95 grain 380 bullets in 38/357. I cast mine and I'm trying to be stingy with lead.
That Lee 105 grain swc mold is a must-have.
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Old 01-11-2022, 03:04 PM
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Sweet.................

I will be hoping that those short length bullets will fly straight in your guns.

I have had good accuray with the 125 LRN "Cowboy" in my J frame snub nose at 600fps.

Tight groups.
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Old 01-11-2022, 03:59 PM
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Looks like a lot of fun indeed. I also like the clean cut big round holes





I’ve never reloaded WC sofar, only commercial stuff



I even have an old Swiss pistol that only shoots .38 SPL WC



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Old 01-11-2022, 06:12 PM
Ivan the Butcher Ivan the Butcher is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trooperdan View Post
And in .38, you might be able to load two bullets in one case!
Use data for 158 SWC and make COAL for 158 SWC!

You need to place any type of card (cork, milk carton, water/mild jug) between the two bullets or they stick to each and basically go in the same hole. Two rounds with the card typically make a 4 hole group of 4 or 5" at 15 yards. Adjust velocity with FPS.

Ivan
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Old 01-11-2022, 06:25 PM
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I shoot nothing but WCs in my S&Ws. I wasn’t happy with the light WCs in 44. I got a new gang mold for HBWCs 237gr but haven’t shot any yet. The Lyman Button Noce 242gr is good shooter in my 25s. I don’t like the DEWC even though I have molds for them.
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Old 01-11-2022, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CLASSIC12 View Post
Looks like a lot of fun indeed. I also like the clean cut big round holes





I’ve never reloaded WC sofar, only commercial stuff



I even have an old Swiss pistol that only shoots .38 SPL WC



Everything was going along so nice until you posted the picture of that last gun.
I now have druel and slobber all over my self............

Very nice.
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Old 01-11-2022, 10:11 PM
ironhead7544 ironhead7544 is offline
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I like the Thunderheads from Penn Bullets.
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Old 01-11-2022, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trooperdan View Post
And in .38, you might be able to load two bullets in one case!
YES! I read that (don't see any problem as they about equal a 148g WC)...I may try it for fun, but probably only a few loads. And yes, I'll report on that also,
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Old 01-11-2022, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CLASSIC12 View Post
Looks like a lot of fun indeed. I also like the clean cut big round holes





I’ve never reloaded WC sofar, only commercial stuff



I even have an old Swiss pistol that only shoots .38 SPL WC



That pistol is intriguing - tell us more.
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Old 01-11-2022, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by ironhead7544 View Post
I like the Thunderheads from Penn Bullets.
You know, I really, really wanted to get bullets from Bob. Placed an order last March, spoke with him on the phone - never came through. He got sick, and died recently (probably already known here). I liked his website, bullet knowledge and numerous options.
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  #13  
Old 01-11-2022, 10:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan the Butcher View Post
Use data for 158 SWC and make COAL for 158 SWC!

You need to place any type of card (cork, milk carton, water/mild jug) between the two bullets or they stick to each and basically go in the same hole. Two rounds with the card typically make a 4 hole group of 4 or 5" at 15 yards. Adjust velocity with FPS.

Ivan
Thank you Ivan - knowledge only available from experience!
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Old 01-11-2022, 10:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Drm50 View Post
I got a new gang mold for HBWCs 237gr but haven’t shot any yet. The Lyman Button Noce 242gr is good shooter in my 25s.
I'd like hear more of these, and pics if possible.

I am not talented enough to cast my own, but like the thought of what you folks who do, do.
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Old 01-12-2022, 04:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevada Ed View Post
Everything was going along so nice until you posted the picture of that last gun.

I now have druel and slobber all over my self............



Very nice.
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Originally Posted by AreWeNotMen? View Post
That pistol is intriguing - tell us more.
I made a post about it last year when I got it

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Old 01-14-2022, 10:50 AM
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Default Range Results and Observations

When to the range yesterday, here are the results:

Light-for-Bore DEWC & IMR Target tests in .38 Special, .44 Special, and .45 ACP
Matt’s Cast Lead .359 75g, .430 150g, .452 165g

Chronograph @ 8 ft, target @ 40ft, 60º F, 250 alt, 10 rounds each load, velocity is mean average of those

.38 Special Colt Diamondback 4” Matt’s Cast Lead .359 75g

Charge 2.0, 2.5 , 3.0

Velocity 659 , 803 , 900


.44 Special Smith & Wesson 629-5 6” Matt’s Cast Lead .430 150g [.44 Mag cases]

Charge 4.0, 4.5, 5.0

Velocity 734, 801, 871

.45 ACP Smith & Wesson 625-8 4” Matt’s Cast Lead .452 165g

Charge 3.5, 3.75 , 4.0

Velocity 746, 793, 826



I didn't calculate standard deviation, but my extreme spreads were mostly in the 30-40 fps range.


1st photo shows the best 5-shot group (.45ACP w/4.0g) - yes I know it ain't nothin' to brag about, just the best I could do bracing on a sandbag with open sights and old eyes at 40 ft.

The 2nd photo shows what appears to me under 10x to be unburned powder, micro flakes of lead, and burnt residue. Was more pronounced in the lightest loads. I don't recall ever seeing this to anywhere near this extent before with other powders even in light loads.
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Old 01-14-2022, 11:23 AM
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Good shootin’! What’s the OAL length for the .45 ACP? Are they loaded flush?
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Old 01-14-2022, 01:54 PM
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Those little 38 cal bullets also make perfect toppers for a load of bird/snake shot. Just punch some wads from a coffee can lid or a cereal box to cover the powder charge. Scoop in some 8,9,10, 11 or 12 shot then seat the little pill over the top and crimp as usual. Very effective shot loads with a little extra oooph just in case it is needed.
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Old 01-14-2022, 02:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AreWeNotMen? View Post
When to the range yesterday, here are the results:

Light-for-Bore DEWC & IMR Target tests in .38 Special, .44 Special, and .45 ACP
Matt’s Cast Lead .359 75g, .430 150g, .452 165g

Chronograph @ 8 ft, target @ 40ft, 60º F, 250 alt, 10 rounds each load, velocity is mean average of those

.38 Special Colt Diamondback 4” Matt’s Cast Lead .359 75g

Charge 2.0, 2.5 , 3.0

Velocity 659 , 803 , 900


.44 Special Smith & Wesson 629-5 6” Matt’s Cast Lead .430 150g [.44 Mag cases]

Charge 4.0, 4.5, 5.0

Velocity 734, 801, 871

.45 ACP Smith & Wesson 625-8 4” Matt’s Cast Lead .452 165g

Charge 3.5, 3.75 , 4.0

Velocity 746, 793, 826



I didn't calculate standard deviation, but my extreme spreads were mostly in the 30-40 fps range.


1st photo shows the best 5-shot group (.45ACP w/4.0g) - yes I know it ain't nothin' to brag about, just the best I could do bracing on a sandbag with open sights and old eyes at 40 ft.

The 2nd photo shows what appears to me under 10x to be unburned powder, micro flakes of lead, and burnt residue. Was more pronounced in the lightest loads. I don't recall ever seeing this to anywhere near this extent before with other powders even in light loads.
On my last trip out to the indoor range, I noticed for the 1st time
that my 30" x 48" paper target , had very small holes all over it from the burnt powder at 8 - 10 feet ?

I forget if 38 or 9mm but it was an eye opener.
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Old 01-14-2022, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by max503 View Post
I've gone to using 105 grain SWC's, as well as 95 grain 380 bullets in 38/357. I cast mine and I'm trying to be stingy with lead.
That Lee 105 grain swc mold is a must-have.
When I bought my first snubnose .38 (2")I found horrible accuracy with my std 148 WC load. Then I bought a 3" Chief's Special and everything was fine.

Nevertheless, I still was aggravated about the lousy 2". I asked a trusted gun guy friend and he suggested the Lee 105's. I saw no improvement and later gave the mold away.

Just by luck I discovered that a 158 Gr. SWC with a slower powder did the trick.
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Old 01-15-2022, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trooperdan View Post
And in .38, you might be able to load two bullets in one case!
I saw those from Matt's Bullets a while back and wanted to give them a try for this very reason. I have some of the old Remington Multi-ball factory ammo in .357. They are fun to play with every once in a while.
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