View Full Version : Can you draw down a .357 to .355 easily.
05-11-2008, 02:25 PM
I have a bunch of 1/2 jackets for .38 and the CH dies for my swag-o-matic. can I swage them up and then draw them down to .355 for my 9mm. I know feeding 1/2 jakets in autos has a history but I don't know if it worth a try. I can fashion a lee style sizer or buy a lee push through sizer. I would think that the force to go down .002 would not be to great for a rockchucker press? maybe?? possibly use a lyman sizing die?
Is this a silly idea? I thought about a reverse paper patch. wrap the 1/2 jacket and lead pill in paper swag it in the 38 die and then remove the paper .... that should leave me with a .355 or there abouts, if I get my paper right. Any ideas or comments? JB
05-11-2008, 06:34 PM
You're playing with fire. Just bite the bullet (no pun intended) and buy a set of .355 swage dies. Otherwise you are going to have to mike every bullet and run the risk of dangerous pressures if you get it wrong.
I've swaged just about every variety of 9mm imaginable. No feed problems in my Taurus PT-99. The key is nose shape and how it relates to the feed ramp on your particular weapon. SWC shapes can cause feeding problems. Radius or round rarely cause trouble.
05-13-2008, 07:36 AM
What I've read is that you can draw bullets to a smaller size, but the cores will become loose inside the jacket (ie: inaccurate). Copper is more elastic than lead. As the jacketed bullet passes through the draw die the lead is crushed down, but the more springy copper compresses. After it pops out of the die the compressed copper "springs back" to a larger dimension, while the lead stays crushed.
If you really, really want to do this, the proper method is to draw down a thousandth or two less than your final diameter, in this case .353 or .354, then swage a second time back up to .355. That way the lead core gets swaged back up to completely fill out the jacket cavity. That means you need the .355 swage dies anyway. It's probubly easiest to just draw down you .357 jacket to .354, then just swage .355 bullets from scratch.
05-13-2008, 08:04 AM
Using a Lee Classic Cast press and two Lee push-through sizing dies, I swage down .323" jacketed bullets to .3155" in order to fit an overbore Mosin-Nagant M38. They first go through a .319" die Lee made me for $25. Then they go through a .3155" die I reamed by hand from a Lee .314" die. Sizing down was a tough job to do on my old RCBS Jr press, but it was easy on the Classic Cast.
You must prelube the inside of the dies. And lube the bullets, of course. By trial and error with several lubes, Lee case lube worked best.
Some .323" jacketed bullets, the Sierra 175 gr for sure, had split jackets after the size-down. The cheap Rem 185 gr .323" bullets worked just fine. That's a .0075" reduction in diameter. Your .002" reduction would be easy. With lube, of course.
05-13-2008, 02:12 PM
Over the years i've drawn down a lot of different bullets... Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, but i bet going from .357" to .355" will be a snap... You will just have to try them to know for sure though...
05-13-2008, 02:37 PM
I just checked some Rem 185 .323" bullets I swaged down to .3155" on 6-16-07 to see if they had regained some diameter after almost a year. They all still miked .3155".
05-13-2008, 05:03 PM
Lots of 9mm's running around with barrels over .355". Most of them in my experience. .001 over isn't going to make a huge difference in pressure.
05-13-2008, 06:06 PM
I've a CH Swag-o-matic with dies for .355. I swaged about 5,000 (before I couldn't find jackets anymore) neat little 100 gr SWCs using .357 HJs. I swaged the SWC nose right down to the HJ. They came out at .356" and shot fine in 2 S&W M39s, a M59 and a P35. I loaded them over 4.5 gr Bulleye for 1150 fps out of the 4" barrels. Not much expansion except for the nose but they were quite accurate. Never had a feed problem in any of the 4 different auto's. As I recall I also fired them in a couple MAC 10s without problem. I've also shot lots of 125 gr .357 bullets (Remington 125 HPs) in numerous 9mms. If the chamber allows them to chamber then there's not any problem if the load is worked up with them.
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