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Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by ar15king, Apr 16, 2013.
Is reload better than stock ammo
depends on many different things. define the usage and details and maybe we can make a determination.
Accuracy and reliability
yes and no. it would depend on how much shooting and what the intended usage would be. factory ammo can be very accurate if you find a particular one that works well in the rifle. this true with any firearm actually. most factory ammo is pretty dang reliable.
yes you can make more accurate reloaded ammo than factory, because you can tailor bullet weights, type of bullet an powder charges and make ammo that is fine tuned to a particular firearm. more reliable? depends on the person reloading the ammo and if he knows what he's doing.
Which is cheaper in the long run
Seriously though. Reloading allows you to use many combinations you may not be able to find. You can tailor a load to your rifle through testing different loads. I think from load to load, consistency is much better with my handloads than factory ammunition which equals accuracy. Price wise, you can easily load a quality round cheaper than you can buy one. I have used brass many times. You can look around and usually find cheap components if you are vigilant. Catch powder and primers or bullets on sale and stock up while the getting is good. As you can see its not always good.
Startup cost will be necessary but will eventually pay off and you will be able to load quality ammunition at a fraction of the cost of factory ammunition.
1,000,000 per cent.
Mine is better.
Ammo that I am going to "stockpile," has the primer sealed with lacquer, the bullets sealed into the cases, the brass is polished and inspected, and once fired, the finished rounds are run through a gauge. The ammo is bulk packed on stripper clips in bandoleers and stored in metal cans with dessicant. Cans are opened and inspected every six months, and the dessicant is dried.
My bulk "gonna shoot within 6 months" range ammo,...not so much. Probably not as good as factory.
I reload because it allows me to make custom Ammunition for my firearms. Most of the time my loads are cheaper than factory ammo.
It is not just about cost. It is also about variety. I shoot a 255 grain 45 acp at about 800 fps. Go try to buy one. I shoot lead because we do a lot of steel knock down stuff. I have also made some really hot 185 grain jhp stuff. You simply have many more options when you handload. You start shooting what you like the most for a given situation, instead of what they happen to have on the shelf at the big box store.
My biggest regret was not getting into reloading. I always had someone who was able to do it for me, but after many years they're practically all dead. I was lazy and they used to do right by me. I have several guns that use obsolete ammo and that can be a problem.
I do have one friend who lives a distance from me who can help me out, but doing it myself would've been better. In a few weeks I'm visiting him with my dies and bullet mould in order for him to load up some 10.35x47R Vetterli ammo. You just can't find that ammo in any store anywhere. The beauty of reloading is that in this case at least these rifles had bore sizes measuring .425 to .435. That's a big difference and the reason why it isn't made. The ammo made by my friend will be perfect for my particular rifle.
Italian Vetterli-Vitali 1870/87 mfg.1875
It depends on how much shooting/hunting your going to do. If your only shooting/hunting a couple of times a year then factory ammo would be the cheaper alternative but if your doing a lot of shooting then reloading is the way to go as you can tailor make a load specific to your rifle/s and make the rifle perform better than with factory ammo.
The initial outlay for reloading gear and cases,powder,primers and projectiles will be high but then after at your costs come down plus the satisfaction of bagging game with something you've made.
I finally was able to shoot my Vetterli yesterday. Unfortunately my camera wasn't working correctly and everything was blurry. I'll correct the problem and take photos of the ammo and the target we shot at.
I purchased loading dies and a bullet mould from Buffalo Arms. I had to wait 3 months until the dies came in. The caliber is 10.35x47R for the Italian Vetterli, but they only had the 10.35x46R bullet mould for the Swiss model, but the width of the bullet was perfect and could be used. It's not a round nose bullet like the Italian, but a little longer and has a flat tip. It can't be pushed into the mag unless I re-shape and slightly shorten it, but since I'm firing very few rounds I'm only loading one at a time anyway.
I also purchased 100 pre-formed cases from Buffalo Arms as well for $2.08 a piece, which is expensive. But each case can be re-loaded 10, or 15 times, which will pay for itself. The cases were formed using .348 Win. brass. A friend of mine owns a gas station and gave me around 50lbs. of lead wheel weights, which is hard lead and great for casting bullets. The EPA is no longer allowing lead weights to be used, so I'm still having him put aside some that are being taken off tires in his shop.
My friend's been loading for many years and got all the necessary specs for both black and smokeless powder. When a gunsmith repaired the firing pin he swagged the barrel and the bore measured .434, which is on the large size. The mould was a perfect .436 which fits the rifling perfectly. Those rifles were a mess, cause the bores ranged from .425 to .436. That's why no one will make that round.
I did get that rifle for free, but now between the re-loading equipment, gunsmith service and formed cases I invested over $500. I had also picked up a 1930's Persian Mauser sling and a repro Vetterli cleaning rod that fits under the barrel, which now makes the rifle complete. That's a lot, but I brought home after shooting 80 rounds of live ammo. If I were to find someone selling those rounds they'd cost somewhere around $5 each. But they can't be found. I have $400 worth of ammo that will last a long time for me.
Down the road I'll have my friend re-load some more, but the cost will be near nothing. He had the powder, which he was given for free and had a ton of large rifle primers, which I couldn't find locally. At 50 yards my last 4 shots had 3 holes touching and 1 flier about an inch and quarter. I'm very pleased with that and will do better next time out. The rifle is a pleasure to shoot with a light kick probably due to the light loads my friend used. Maybe I'll have him load up a few black powder rounds just for fun. I'm a very happy man finally shooting this rifle after 58 years.
Wow. Congrats on finally getting to shoot it. Maybe you should consider getting a Lee handloader kit for it, if they make it in that caliber? Just a thought.
To the OP, I find reloading really enjoyable and relaxing. At times frustrating but its usually my own fault.
Do I save money? Not really. I just get to shoot a lot more. The same amount of money has been allocated. I just get more rounds down range with reloading.
Aren't those rim fire?
I inquired about the Lee handloader, but was told it can't happen. I wish I could reload this ammo on my own as well as a few other expensive obsolete cartridges, but really don't feel at this stage in my life it would be worth the expense getting into reloading, since I don't really shoot that much anymore. I do regret not doing it years ago though. I hate to annoy my friend to reload for me and will make sure it'll be a long time before I do again. That ammo's gold to me. At least I have what's needed to produce that ammo and it'll stay with that rifle. In later years whoever has that rifle will be able to at least shoot it. Many who own them just can't.
No.You may be thinking of the Swiss 41 RF. People who have them actually modify the firing pin to fire CF, which is very simple. My rifle originally was black powder and in 1891 they began using smokeless rounds which were down loaded naturally. Cartridges of the World shows both loads in black and smokeless. In 1915 many were converted to 6.5 Carcano and had their barrels sleeved. Many were blowing up due to this smaller but more powerful round. They aren't recommended for shooting but downloading is advised. I just have to say my only complaint is a poor sight picture due to a narrow rear notch, but it's fun to shoot with a mild recoil. If ammo was available I'd shoot it like crazy.