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Thread: Problem: Trail Boss in .38 Special

  1. #31
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    The clue is that a 60 percent increase in powder charge weight results in only a 300 psi pressure increase or only four percent. After this large increase in powder charge weight pressure remains very low with the light bullet used in the Hodgdon data. Combine this with a lightweight shallowly seated bullet and you get the wide swings in observed velocity the OP is experiencing.

    If deep seating approximating wadcutter depth does not help, discontinuing its usage or using a heavier bullet is the smart thing to do. At such seating depth the light RN bullet may be barely peeking out of the case or be below the case mouth. Incrementally seating the bullet deeper is the only thing left to try with the lightweight bullet. Of course the powder charge should be reduced when doing so.
    Last edited by johnnyrem; 09-07-19 at 14:06.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnnyrem View Post
    Since alternatives were supplied on the Castboolits thread, apply those suggested. If deeply seated light bullets equivalent in seating depth to wadcutters do not give low spreads give up on Trail Boss. I pointed out the clues in Hodgdon’s data that indicated light bullets of similar weight were inconsistent. The suggested fix is the last thing for you to try.

    If it doesn’t work, move on. Make sure the cases are suitable in wall thickness for deep seating.

    Do not seat bullets backwards as that is undesirable. Apply my suggestion instead.
    Are you Remington35 from CastBoolits?

    WTH happened to the thread over there? It's been deleted...


    You're being cryptic again... The suggestion is to seat deeper, right?

    And why is seating backwards so undesirable? "Boattail" bullets do just fine in rifle cartridges...

  3. #33
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    I don’t think I am being cryptic as you did get the suggestion. Seat to wadcutter depth. Much deeper. Read post 31.

    If that doesn’t produce low extreme spreads forget TB with light bullets.

    I do not know where thread went. I suppose something inopportune was said. Yes that is me. A rounded base isn’t so good for handgun ammo and accuracy. My idea is more logical.
    Last edited by johnnyrem; 09-07-19 at 19:19.

  4. #34
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    My preference as a reloader, is for a pistol powder, of appropriate burn rate for the task at hand that will fill case with enough powder that a double charge will be obvious.

    TB is a BP substitute- of sorts.
    IMO it is a poor choice for the task of a light recoiling load to introduce wife/children to revolver shooting.
    Look to a fast powder for that purpose; Titegroup, Bullseye, etc are great candidates for low velocity, light recoil loads without all the drama associated with TB.

    Titegroup is a personal favorite that I use in 9mm wimp loads to introduce new shooters to handguns.
    The load is accurate and exceptionally easy to shoot.
    The downside is; a low volume charge is easy to double charge.

  5. #35
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    That is where he should go next if this deep seating idea does not work.

    That has been suggested elsewhere multiple times. Ultimately it is his choice to find improvement, or not.

    Unfortunately the powders like Titegroup and Bullseye can not only be double charged but even triple charged and leave plenty of room for a bullet. Trail Boss is actually quite fast as powders go but so far it is not working here.

    With very light bullets even the above two powders will show position sensitivity in the 38 Special case, but in my experience nowhere near to this degree.
    Last edited by johnnyrem; 09-07-19 at 21:07.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnnyrem View Post
    A rounded base isn’t so good for handgun ammo and accuracy.
    I'm very curious to see how these work... They have a big step at the ogive, backwards they look a bit like the old Lapua subsonic rifle bullets:

    https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1010726237?pid=381996



    Quote Originally Posted by gaijin View Post
    My preference as a reloader, is for a pistol powder, of appropriate burn rate for the task at hand that will fill case with enough powder that a double charge will be obvious.

    TB is a BP substitute- of sorts.
    IMO it is a poor choice for the task of a light recoiling load to introduce wife/children to revolver shooting.
    Look to a fast powder for that purpose...
    Like Johnny said, TB is fast (certainly should be fast enough).

    With even a minimal 70% charge of TB, a double charge is very obvious (big mess), which I like...

  7. #37
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    3.2 -- 3.3gr. Win 231 behind a swaged lead 148gr. hollow base (or solid) wadcutter.

    we call them "bunny fart" loads.

    many (including a past me) use bullseye (3ish grains - verify suggested starting load)

    bob

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by vonfatman View Post
    3.2 -- 3.3gr. Win 231 behind a swaged lead 148gr. hollow base (or solid) wadcutter.

    we call them "bunny fart" loads.

    many (including a past me) use bullseye (3ish grains - verify suggested starting load)

    bob
    3.2g Win 231 or 2.7g Bullseye behind a Remington 148g HBWC was my 50 yard load for years. I shot quite a few 480 point 25 yard matches with this load and so did many others who shot higher X counts than I did on many occasions. Many who consistently shot well over 700 out of 720 in 50 yard matches used the same load.
    Last edited by T2C; 09-12-19 at 21:37.
    Train 2 Win

  9. #39
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    Following up on this...

    I tried the 95s again, and it was still shiddy. ESs in the 150-170 range, and SDs at 50-60+.

    Loading the bullets backwards ("boat-tailed wadcutters") was just a bit slower (surprise) and just as inconsistent.

    I shot one string making sure to "position" the powder at the rear of the cases, and they averaged 90fps faster, but were just as consistent.


    So, you guys (and the CastBoolits guys) were right... This just isn't working. I'll use the 95s for .380ACP.

    I just ordered some 125 flat points and some 148 wadcutters.

    Hodgdon says Trail Boss will move 148gr wadcutters at 625-675fps (@ 15,000+ psi), which isn't much more energy than a starting load (740fps) with 95gr bullets, so (like everybody tried to tell me), that looks like the ticket.

    Until the 148s arrive, I might play with "duplex" loads using those 75gr wadcutters.

  10. #40
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    ... and one more thing.

    If I had known when I started what I know now, I would've just loaded .38 Short Colt.

    As is, I think I'll order some brass and dies and use up those 75 and 95gr bullets that way.

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