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Old 02-20-2013, 10:28 PM   #1
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Default Uberti 1873 Cattleman - which lead bullet diameter to use?

I've previously read elsewhere about how you should slug barrels of vintage Colts and Winchesters since bullet diameter requirements may often vary between similar models.

However, am wondering if that should also be done for new production SAA's like the Uberti 1873 Cattleman revolver or even the new Colt SAA's?

In looking at my Hornady reloading manual it lists jacketed bullets at .452 and lead at .454 diameter.

Am curious why lead would be used with a larger diameter than jacketed when being shot through the same bore?

Also would like to know if I should expect to purchase .454 diameter lead bullets for use in handloading for any of the new production SAA revolvers or should I expect to have to slug the barrel on my new Uberti SAA before buying lead bullets?

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Old 02-20-2013, 10:34 PM   #2
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.452 dia, lead or jacketed.

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Old 02-22-2013, 03:13 PM   #3
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What about some recipes for reloading the 45 LC. Fixing to add one to my ur um "collection" haha.

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Old 02-23-2013, 04:42 PM   #4
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WW, Rem or Fed cases
Rem 2 1/2 or WW LP primers
8.0 grains Unique
250 Gr lead bullet

This has been somewhat of a "standard" .45 colt load for the last 100 years.

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Old 02-25-2013, 09:26 AM   #5
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Very deep subject that,with 30+ years of casting......I'm maybe half-way up the info ladder.

Slugging the brrl accomplishes a cpl important tasks.But also mic the chamber throats.This is like soooo many things about casting/using lead bullets....there are factors that are interrelated.Ideally,the throats will be .0005" or so larger than brrl.And then start the bullet out another .0005 over throat diam.....all of which equates to having the bullet loaded @.001" over you brrl dimension.IF,all the above factors are met.

The "magic" really starts when the caster/shooter understands the relationship between....bullets diameter(and how that affects the particular firearm),bullets hardness/toughness,bullets design,how well it seals(obturate),all of which comes before bullet leaves the gun....or,internal ballistics.External and terminal ballistics is also of extreme importance.

Not "trying" to be ambiguous,really.Its just that theres a very fine balance of several factors in how bullets work.Most all of which,also apply to jacketed projectiles.The problem there is that most never get tooled up to produce their own($$$).And if push came to shove,my money would be on cast bullets as having a touch more accuracy potential.You have so many more design aspects to access?

Above does explain some of the reasons one shooter will have great successes with cast bullets...next guy comes along and despises them.Get the size "right" and pay very close attention to what we call,skidding.Some shooters refer to it as leading.Skidding is a little better description....because thats exactly whats happening.If the bullet is undersized....not sealing(might be TOO hard)...or a cpl other factors,the bullet skids a cpl inches up brrl before fully engaging with rifling.You need to be aware of it and correct the problem.Sometimes it can be really tough(clyinder's throats smaller than brrl),but if you keep digging,theres almost always an answer.

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Old 02-26-2013, 11:08 PM   #6
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Intheshop, I'm glad you mentioned the possibility of the chamber throats being SMALLER than the barrel's groove diameter, because that CAN happen. When the gun has that problem, the throats will swage the bullet down to throat size, making it too small to grab the rifling, poor accuracy resulting. So the throats have to be reamed to proper diameter, relative to the barrel's groove diameter, usually a thou over & that diameter bullet used to get good accuracy. Make sense to you, ITS?

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Old 02-27-2013, 10:11 AM   #7
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Yup,reaming/polishing throats would be a viable approach.And certainly not trying to dissuade anyone's DIY efforts.....BUT(had to be one).

Its going to take some pretty dang serious equip/setups/metrology.Just don't be runnin down to the local hdwre store looking for tooling,haha.

Leave this up to not only a pro pistolsmith....but one who's in the biz of making their own cylinders(and there are a cpl).I'd price it out from a pro and we're sitting on a full-blown machine shop......duh.Not everything HAS to be done inhouse.Shipping a cyl and having the throats opened up "should" be affordable and timely.Just sayin,I'd check it before even thinking about building a fixture.Then do a quick cost/value assessment.

But,for the guy willing to experiment with casting alloys and techniques....I can even overcome a little ,"out of balance" on the diameter thing.The bullets would need to be soft enough,and really have to play with the sizing......that,O.K. accuracy "could" be achieved.It would take a huge investment in time.....much easier just to send the cyl off to get "punched out".

One place to start in all this is having the measuring tools.We can blabber all day about this or that technique,principle,theory,blabla.Until a reloader has his/her metrology tools/techniques down....there ain't a whole lot of point talking about it.Understanding how,just the temperature of your hands affects diameters when speaking in "tenth's"(.0001)....is a beginning to understanding what happens to bullet when getting its arse set on fire with the powder'd cattleprod.

A chrono...an extremely repeatable rest....and quantifiable data "on target" usually lights the way.When you've got it all in alignment....and you're tearing one holers...it all seems to be worth it.

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Old 02-27-2013, 12:34 PM   #8
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AMEN, & thanx, jd45

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Old 02-27-2013, 02:25 PM   #9
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Bullet "Skidding" Hum? Never used that one. Bullets undersized to bore allows gas cutting as hot gases pass around the bullet. The hot gases allow droplets of hot lead to adhere to the guns bore.
Bullet hardness in a handgun depends on pressures you choose to run. The facts are that handguns up thru the .44 Mag. seldom need a BHN above #11. When handguns such as the .460 or .454 reach rifle level pressures you may need a BHN of 20.
When shooting cast bullets you really should slug your bore. The forcing cone and bore dimensions are most important in choosing a correct bullet. The BHN of cast bullets is often misunderstood by new bullet casters.

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Old 02-27-2013, 05:34 PM   #10
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nitestalker,this is just my observations....and its an ongoing thing,nuthin completely written in stone.

Gas cutting and it can come from several factors.....Bevel based bullets will do it.Which is one of my main complaints with them.I understand why commercial casting Co's use them,considering the rough and literally tumble environ that these bullets are subjected to(in a pkg'ing sense)....a BB bullet "looks" better in the bx. and is liteyears easier to load.Just sayin though,they really are nasty(in my experience)about gas cutting.They just don't want to seal?

Gas cutting..."leading" looks a little different than skid marks.The former has a more porous,welded on look(looking at it in the brrl) and is a Bear to clean.Kinda like porosity in a weld bead.Hard to describe.Skidding has a more refined,linear look to it.I could have a well fitted,well balanced bullet....use too hot of a powder at the wrong pressure and get gas cutting.

Skid marks are a little easier to deal with....just going up/down on powder charge will usually make them somewhat predictable,and yes its all very much related to bullets hardness/pressure.A little skidding ain't a bad thing...provided we're getting consistant results on paper(group size).It wipes right out.

Got way too many moulds here.....don't get me started,haha.But WRT a really sharp,clean base edge...our Lyman 429421 is without a doubt the end-all-be-all.The bases are almost sharp enough to produce a cut,they're that crisp.They seal very well....being more tolerant than other,softer base edged moulds in stock....to pressure differences.

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