View Full Version : Ever try not using lube?

10-17-2007, 07:55 PM
I've started patching for my 444 and I am having some great results in my first 100 rounds. Boolits are 429421 & 429244. I've tried Lee Liquid Alox and Johnsons Past Wax both with decent results out at 100 yards. Though I am getting the occasional flyer. I'm wondering if the flyer is a lube flyer. I'm also wondering what the lube is for? Can't I get away with just the paper jacket or does it need some "slick" to let it go down the bore without damage? Has anyone tried shooting them without any lube?

10-17-2007, 08:03 PM
I shoot all mine with out lubing them .I wrap dry and load as I go works perfectly for me...
Some say there is an accuracy advantage to lubeing , I havent seen it and I usted to wet patch and lube the patch but had fliers from stuck patch parts and such .. if you use a good cotton paper I 'll bet you will not see any wear on your barrel in your lifetime.......Dean

Jon K
10-17-2007, 10:50 PM

Eliminating the cookie?


10-17-2007, 11:23 PM
Jon K
It could be either no cookie or no lube on the patch I was guessin the patch .because it appears he is shooting smokeless because of the ctg, so where would he put a cookie without causing problems ? ...............Dean

10-18-2007, 08:22 AM
I have been paper patching since the 70s and never tried it without lube. I have such good luck with it I guess Ill keep on using it. Be interesting to hear from other folk that have tried it.

10-18-2007, 01:25 PM
I loaded 5 each of 429244 and 429421. Shot at 100 yards today and the groups were in the 6-8" range. My previous loads with lube on the patch were running 1.5" with the occassional flyer opening the group to 2.5-3".

The idea of no lube with this bore and paper didn't work out; but it leads me to believe that I should try my previous loads with both thinned out lube and also more lube to see where they go.

Though the loads didn't shoot that great, leading was not an issue.

Digital Dan
10-24-2007, 02:49 PM
Dry patches will wear your bore at an accelerated rate. Shooting mild loads with dry patch is an excellent way to polish a gray or dark bore.

Try 50/50 Vaseline/Beeswax for patch lube. Works well, smells nice. Degrease your bullets before patching and you'll have little problem with the patch material sticking to the bullet.

10-24-2007, 07:16 PM
That is next on my list of things to try. The JPW doesn't wet the patch as much as I'd like. I was wanting to try some, but didn't realize till the other day that I actually have a small chunk of bees wax in a tin.

Digital Dan
10-24-2007, 09:12 PM
Slughammer, there's a couple of things you can try regarding the flyer issue. Most of my work with paper patch involves the .44 Mag. and I've been thru the mill with that one, so maybe what worked for me will work for you.

The Lube: Half and half, microwave it a very short while, stir and let it cool. If you see smoke or smell honey consider it a clue that it's hot enough. Only takes maybe 15 seconds or so, depending on quantity. After your patch has dried, and I assume you are wet patching, use about a matchhead size lump of lube and smear it on the entire patch. Work it in with your fingers.

The Bullets: I infer from your first post the bullets you use are GG designs? If so I'd suggest you consider this conundrum. If you aren't filling the grooves with lube before patching you are likely getting cants in the bullet base resulting from unequal upset when the bullet obturates. If you are lubing them it is possible that not all the patch is leaving the bullet as it exits the muzzle. My only suggestion is to use a very hard lube to maybe avoid both problems. Emphasis on "maybe". Better to pick up a mould for a dedicated PP bullet and be done with it. Check your bore dimensions first and get one that will cast to ~.422" with the alloy you wish to use so you don't have to size it. I get ~1600 fps with pure lead before pressure starts making things get odd, this with a 300 grain bullet. All else equal you should be able to do better with the .444. You might also go higher with weight, perhaps up to 350 grains. If you'd like to experiment with this a bit before committing to a mould, contact Montana Precision Swaging in Butte, MT. for this bullet. I have no interest in the company, they just make the bullets. Tell Russ "Hi" for me if you do.

When you patch, try just tucking about 3/32" of patch under the base rather than the twist approach, and use a flat base design rather than cupped base. Use a card wad as well. That can be made by chamfering a case and cutting wads out of notepad backer...or something similar.

Anyhoo, hope this helps. Always thought the .444 would be a whiz for paper patching, good luck to you.

10-25-2007, 01:50 PM
I have been patching grooved bullets since the 70s with no problem. I size bore dia. +.001/ .0015 , patch with 16lb paper and I do NOT lube before patching. I patch 30 cal, 303 cal, .375, and .458s. The grooved bullets hold the lube better than smooth sided bullets. I have sold all my Paper Patch moulds and now use only standards.

Digital Dan
10-25-2007, 04:45 PM
Different guns do different things with patching in my experience. I've patched nothing smaller than .40 caliber and no bottle necked cases. Dunno what your alloy is or what pressures you load to. My world is pure lead and fairly high pressures(mid 30 KPSI) and that's why I said what I said. YMMV.

10-26-2007, 07:39 PM
The above group was shot at 50 yards about 2 weeks ago. Just to show what is typical of the flyers I'm getting with paper patched in my 1-38twist Marlin 444 (circa 1976!)

The boolit is 429244 gas check design, no gas check used. Cast of ACWW at about .430 dia and sized down to .426 (a thou over the .425 bore). They are wrapped with 2 wraps of Mead Academie Tracing Paper from the Wal*Mart. Load is 35gr of XMP 5744, the bare boolits were sized down dry and hand lubed with JPW after the patch dried.

I can really see the potentail if I had a better boolit. Right now, I can't touch the lands with this SWC. If I loaded it out long enough to touch, I wouldn't be able to load them through the feed gate into the magazine tube. The OAL length for these is set to load the mag, therefore the boolit is taking a pretty long trip till it touches rifling.

But the result so far are pretty good.