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cmat1120
03-25-2019, 04:28 PM
Hello, I was wondering if .001 over groove is a really hard minimum bullet size or if it just needs to be bigger than the grooves and .001 is just the standard amount. The reason I ask is I have a marlin 1894 in 44 mag that slugs out at 0.4315". 0.432" bullets aren't too hard to find, but I can't find any decently priced 0.433" bullets. I want to get the best I can out of the rifle, but the only 0.433" bullets I can find are almost 3 times as much as 0.432" I can find(not because of the size, but just the standard cost from those sources). Adding that much to the cost of reloading would mean I wouldn't be able to shoot nearly as much.

Also I did run about 50 0.432" swc-hp bullets through it this weekend and didn't notice any leading, but I was shooting steel so I don't know how accurate they were. The rounds I were firing were just under max load for unique powder so probably around 1400 fps out of the rifle. I didn't bring a chrono so that's the best estimate I have.

fredj338
03-25-2019, 04:36 PM
I think it is often quoted as min but as long as the bullet is over sized, you generally get good results. I do know that even 0.0005" undersized can cause accuracy & leading issues.

MT Gianni
03-25-2019, 04:41 PM
I don't care about leading but grouping. If I can't get a decent group with the 0.001" over groove diameter it could be because of a barrel flaw. It could also be alloy ir other issues too. IIRC, Veral Smith stated that he didn't care for micro-groove bbls as they tended to vary in diameter through the bbl. If you're shooting with enough pressure to keep the bullet expanded and filling the grooves it should do fine. If your groups aren't where you want them to be casting your own or finding some .432" for sale would be my next move.

cmat1120
03-25-2019, 05:22 PM
This is a new marlin so it does have ballard rifling although the rifling still looks pretty shallow. I'm out of bullets now though so I need to order more and I'd prefer to order in bulk. I suppose I could just put out the money to get 1-200 each of 0.432 and the pricey 0.433 before ordering 1-2000 of one type. I figured I'd ask in case there was a definitive answer on this topic so I didn't waste money, but it sounds like maybe its more of a guess and check kind of deal. I am planning on trying to get bullets of a bhn close to 12 so they shouldn't have much of a problem expanding at ~1400fps from what I understand.

I'd love to start casting my own, but I don't have the space for it currently nor the time as a junior in college.

bmortell
03-25-2019, 05:41 PM
you should of did a proper accuracy test with sandbags while you had them. id get whatever a small batch of each come in, and test accuracy with the loads you may use. if .432 is accurate enough and isn't leading bad it don't really matter what the numbers are. id rather clean my barrel sometimes than spend 3 times more on ammo as long as they shoot accurate enough.

Outpost75
03-25-2019, 07:31 PM
Throat size, not groove size!!!!!!!

Rcmaveric
03-25-2019, 07:54 PM
Depends on the gun and your mileage. I have heard guys preach bore diameter. There was a fella not to long ago who lost accuracy as he increased diameter. So he sized his 308 to 308. I started off the .002 over bore. Then comparing apples to oranges i tried the throat sizing. I noticed increased accuracy with throat sized bullets. So, that's the way i go now a days. So, in all fairness bore to throat diameter is your window. See what the guns like.

cmat1120
03-25-2019, 09:51 PM
Throat size, not groove size!!!!!!!

I'm shooting in a rifle not a revolver, although I will shoot these in my revolver too assuming it chambers. 0.432 has no problem chambering in my revolver so hopefully 0.433 does as well if I end up having to go that big.

Also to clarify lever action rifles generally don't have a throat. They pretty much go straight from chamber to rifling.

waksupi
03-26-2019, 01:04 PM
I'm shooting in a rifle not a revolver, although I will shoot these in my revolver too assuming it chambers. 0.432 has no problem chambering in my revolver so hopefully 0.433 does as well if I end up having to go that big.

Also to clarify lever action rifles generally don't have a throat. They pretty much go straight from chamber to rifling.

The chamber is the throat. I like to find a bullet that slips into a fired case with just a bit of resistance. That is usually the best ticket for a particular rifle.

cmat1120
03-26-2019, 06:36 PM
The chamber is the throat. I like to find a bullet that slips into a fired case with just a bit of resistance. That is usually the best ticket for a particular rifle.

Based on that I'm going to need a 0.434 bullet then... Measuring the inside of fired cases I'm getting around 0.4335-0.434". I can't find anywhere to get bullets that size. In fact after going back and looking I can't find anywhere that sells 0.433 either.

waksupi
03-27-2019, 12:28 PM
Based on that I'm going to need a 0.434 bullet then... Measuring the inside of fired cases I'm getting around 0.4335-0.434". I can't find anywhere to get bullets that size. In fact after going back and looking I can't find anywhere that sells 0.433 either.

You would probably need to order a custom from one of our mold makers.

cmat1120
03-27-2019, 01:22 PM
You would probably need to order a custom from one of our mold makers.

I'm not currently able to cast my own. I'm going to try ordering some .433 from Missouri Bullet Company. I'm going to order 240gr rnfp with a bhn of 12. I'll have to order 1000 so hopefully they work. If not I guess I'll have to try selling them on here to someone that can use them.

cmat1120
03-27-2019, 05:28 PM
I did a little testing that may or may not have practical meaning. I took some empty cases and flared the rim out to see how much I could flare it out and still be able to chamber. I managed to flare it to 0.456" and it easily chambers in my revolver and with a slight amount of pressure it chambers in my rifle. I know that this isn't a complete test as the throats could still be too small, but based on how easy both chambered 0.432 swc's I think I'll be fine even with a rnfp in 0.433". A wfn would be a little tighter though I think.

fatelk
03-27-2019, 06:31 PM
I have an older Marlin 1894 .44 Mag, with microgroove rifling. As I recall, it also slugs at .4315”.

I have .44 mag revolvers and prefer to be able to use the same ammo in rifle and pistol, so the best compromise I found for my guns was .432” bullets. I used powder coated 429421 and 429244 (basically the same except with a gas check). They all work well but I’ve found that for my rifle the gas checked bullets are more accurate, even with lighter loads.

That’s just what works best with my rifle; I understand yours is different with different rifling.

cmat1120
03-27-2019, 08:07 PM
I have an older Marlin 1894 .44 Mag, with microgroove rifling. As I recall, it also slugs at .4315Ē.

I have .44 mag revolvers and prefer to be able to use the same ammo in rifle and pistol, so the best compromise I found for my guns was .432Ē bullets. I used powder coated 429421 and 429244 (basically the same except with a gas check). They all work well but Iíve found that for my rifle the gas checked bullets are more accurate, even with lighter loads.

Thatís just what works best with my rifle; I understand yours is different with different rifling.

Thanks for the info. I just ordered 1000 0.433 bullets. They're a bhn of 12, but I'm only using unique powder so it should be under 1500fps. If these don't work out well I'll either use them in the revolver, use them for soft loads or sell them to someone that can use them. Luckily my revolver is an older single action and seems to have pretty loose chambers.

I'm hoping I can manage to make a plain base work but if not I'll give gas checks a try, but at that point I'll probably have to wait until I can cast my own as I haven't found any gc bullets cheap enough for me to use as range ammo.

I also tested the accuracy of my last 10 0.432 bullets. Unfortunately I'm not positive if I'm not used to the ghost ring sight or the bullets are inaccurate as I got around a 5" group at 50 yards. For reference my groups with standard iron sights at the same distance with my 10/22 and cheap ammo was around an inch with a few flyers in a 10 shot string. I think I might've been trying too hard to center the front post. Apparently with ghost sights that's a no no.

DougGuy
03-27-2019, 08:30 PM
If they work in the rifle, and work well, you could always have the revolver cylinder throats honed to chamber the loads that work in the rifle. I have done this a few times so guys can load the same ammo for both.

fatelk
03-27-2019, 09:09 PM
I had a terrible time getting any kind of accuracy out of mine for years, with cast or jacketed. I finally found that the tube was binding badly on the barrel. I relieved that and it seemed to help a lot. I tinkered and experimented a lot before finding something that works, but it’s still not a tack driver.

In mine I had to have a full power load with a gas check to get any acceptable accuracy. I saw a lot of targets like your 5”@50 yard groups during all my tinkering. Of course that’s just my rifle, and others here have different stories to tell about theirs, so you never know until you try. Good luck!

cmat1120
03-27-2019, 11:12 PM
I had a terrible time getting any kind of accuracy out of mine for years, with cast or jacketed. I finally found that the tube was binding badly on the barrel. I relieved that and it seemed to help a lot. I tinkered and experimented a lot before finding something that works, but it’s still not a tack driver.

In mine I had to have a full power load with a gas check to get any acceptable accuracy. I saw a lot of targets like your 5”@50 yard groups during all my tinkering. Of course that’s just my rifle, and others here have different stories to tell about theirs, so you never know until you try. Good luck!

Thanks I read something about that. I loosened the front cap and only snugged the screws this time rather than cranking them down. I also ordered a rail so I can throw a 4x scope on to take the sights out of the equation until I have a load that shoots well. I know I'm a decent shot with irons as I'm used to the similar sights on the M4 rifle, but I'm definitely better with a scope. With my bolt action rifle and handloads I can shoot .24" at 100 yards. If I can get around 3-4" at 100 yards I'll be very happy. Hardest shot I'd take that could matter would be around 125 yards with a 6" kill zone(deer or elk).

I might try some factory JSP ammo too just to see how it shoots. And if nothing else my first range session taught me how fun this thing is at under 40 yards shooting steel rapidly.

cmat1120
03-29-2019, 08:27 PM
I ordered 1000 0.431 jsp bullets so I'll give those a try for now. I'd like to start casting my own, but I'd prefer to try some 0.433 and 0.434 bullets first to see how they work first before investing in all the equipment. I guess I'll just wait till I've contributed to this forum enough to put a WTB ad in the S&S section and hopefully find someone willing to sell a few of each to test out. I looked into powdercoating, but that doesn't seem like something I'd be interested in doing.

I appreciate everyone's advice and tips!

tecdac
03-31-2019, 12:12 PM
You don't say what you are using the rifle for but if you scale back the velocity the softer bullet will expand to the barrel size and your accuracy will go up.

Yooper003
04-01-2019, 09:38 AM
You might try ordering raw boolits at .432 then powder coating them. Not too much of a job & should bring them up to .434

cmat1120
04-01-2019, 12:37 PM
You don't say what you are using the rifle for but if you scale back the velocity the softer bullet will expand to the barrel size and your accuracy will go up.

Plinking mostly, but eventually hunting as well if I ever pull a unit with thick brush. I want an fps range around 1200-1500 for hunting(whatever I can max out at using unique powder), but besides that I don't care. I was under the assumption higher velocity = more obturation and therefore the bullet will fit the barrel better. Isn't that why high BHN bullets require magnum+ velocity? A lot of people with the same rifle report good accuracy and a clean barrel with low BHN bullets(10-15) once they find a bullet that fits the barrel correctly.

cmat1120
04-13-2019, 06:22 PM
Just got back from the range today and the jacketed bullets shot very accurately so I'm pretty confident the other bullets I tested were either too small or too hard or both. I've pretty much given up on finding commercial over sized bullets at a reasonable price so I might get into casting myself after all.

DougGuy
04-13-2019, 06:30 PM
throat size, not groove size!!!!!!!

^^^^ this.


Just got back from the range today and the jacketed bullets shot very accurately so I'm pretty confident the other bullets I tested were either too small or too hard or both. I've pretty much given up on finding commercial over sized bullets at a reasonable price so I might get into casting myself after all.

J words for all the hate they gather here (LOL) are wonderfully adept at obturating to fit the throat, and the groove, they are a dead soft lead core swaged into a fairly weak, thin, very malleable gilding metal jacket. You can fire j words through a severe thread choke, and with sufficient gas pressure behind them they will swage down to go thorough the choke, then bump back up to fill the bore. Pretty cool how they do that if you ask me.

Soft alloys will do the same in your rifle, if you load .432" over full house loads of slow burning powder, they will fill the throat and seal pretty well by the time they exit the case mouth. Too small boolit diameter, and too hard an alloy, will always be problematic. Does this make any sense?

waksupi
04-15-2019, 11:29 AM
Throat size, not groove size!!!!!!!

I tried to explain this to a very experienced shooter this past weekend, and he thought I was nuts. Kind of hard to argue with him, as he is a real accuracy nut, and whatever he does seems to work well.

cmat1120
04-15-2019, 04:52 PM
^^^^ this.



J words for all the hate they gather here (LOL) are wonderfully adept at obturating to fit the throat, and the groove, they are a dead soft lead core swaged into a fairly weak, thin, very malleable gilding metal jacket. You can fire j words through a severe thread choke, and with sufficient gas pressure behind them they will swage down to go thorough the choke, then bump back up to fill the bore. Pretty cool how they do that if you ask me.

Soft alloys will do the same in your rifle, if you load .432" over full house loads of slow burning powder, they will fill the throat and seal pretty well by the time they exit the case mouth. Too small boolit diameter, and too hard an alloy, will always be problematic. Does this make any sense?

Yep this makes complete sense to me. From what I understand the only reason to find a size that "fits" is so you can use harder bullets to avoid gas cutting. I've heard mixed things on the next part, but since I'm using a rifle even my moderate loads using max pressure of unique powder are going to be going fast enough that a soft bullet will lead regardless of how well it fits. That seems to be the only reason I would need to look for these bigger diameter bullets. All I want is bullets that are accurate and don't overly lead my barrel. From my research I see no terminal ballistic reasoning for using lead any harder than 8 bhn. Commercial lead is all much much harder though so without proper fitment I know I'll have all kinds of issues.

I wish I could cast myself as I would really like to be able to find that sweet spot of using a more "standard" 432 bullet and experimenting to see if there was a bhn where it obturated well and also didn't lead. That kind of process is why I am interested in getting into casting.

As for the throat size comments I do get that its the most surefire way to get proper fit. If you put a bullet in that's as big as will chamber, chances are it will be well over bore size. I'm pretty sure that's why matching throat size works so well. I definitely get why you guys are recommending it as its simply fool proof. If I could I would be following that recommendation. The reason I started this thread was because I have not yet gotten into casting so I was hoping I could find info on a minimum size in the hopes that it would equate to something I could buy commercially. If I was able to cast myself I'd get a mold made to drop 0.434+ bullets and call it a day.

Fortunately I'm going to get to try some bigger cast bullets from a member here and see how they do. I'm guessing their performance will convince me to start casting my own as soon as I can.

yeahbub
04-17-2019, 12:19 PM
A softer alloy around 8-10 BHN will allow some boolit upset to improve sealing in the grooves, but they can't be drivien hard or they'll leak. YMMV. A card wad and lube cookie will help with that. The next step up is a gas check design. Matching alloy hardness to desired velocity and pressure is a big part of success.

It's good you've slugged the barrel. Did you happen to notice whether there were loose or tight spots? Or a reverse taper, tight at the breech and loose at the muzzle? Tight spots or reverse taper will produce indifferent accuracy with cast with just about any boolit/load combination, but jacketed may do better. It's fairly easy to correct with pressure-lapping as the difference is usually less than .001. It's more prevalent in round barrels that have been bored/reamed/rifled and then lathe turned to outside contour, allowing unresolved stresses to cause the barrel to "spring", more where it is thinnest. Not all barrels exhibit this, but it's not uncommon.

Powder coat could give you that extra bit of diameter to bring a boolit up .001 or so. Maybe someone can send you a coated handful to try.

Another possibility is to paper patch a few and size them to the diameter you need, keeping in mind that paper will spring back .001 over what the size die is, so a .432 sizer will produce a .433 boolit. Paper patching doesn't require much investment; a ruler, disposable razor knife, some Elmer's glue and some ordinary notebook paper will do. One doesn't do this to turn out thousands of them, but for experimental proof-of-concept purposes or making enough for hunting, they can provide another avenue of approach. One nice thing about PP is that there's no lead to steel contact at all, so your barrel stays clean of any lead fouling and soft lead can be driven hard with a paper jacket. There's a sticky on this site you can mine for info to see whether you'd like to give it a try.

cmat1120
04-17-2019, 03:54 PM
A softer alloy around 8-10 BHN will allow some boolit upset to improve sealing in the grooves, but they can't be drivien hard or they'll leak. YMMV. A card wad and lube cookie will help with that. The next step up is a gas check design. Matching alloy hardness to desired velocity and pressure is a big part of success.

It's good you've slugged the barrel. Did you happen to notice whether there were loose or tight spots? Or a reverse taper, tight at the breech and loose at the muzzle? Tight spots or reverse taper will produce indifferent accuracy with cast with just about any boolit/load combination, but jacketed may do better. It's fairly easy to correct with pressure-lapping as the difference is usually less than .001. It's more prevalent in round barrels that have been bored/reamed/rifled and then lathe turned to outside contour, allowing unresolved stresses to cause the barrel to "spring", more where it is thinnest. Not all barrels exhibit this, but it's not uncommon.

Powder coat could give you that extra bit of diameter to bring a boolit up .001 or so. Maybe someone can send you a coated handful to try.

Another possibility is to paper patch a few and size them to the diameter you need, keeping in mind that paper will spring back .001 over what the size die is, so a .432 sizer will produce a .433 boolit. Paper patching doesn't require much investment; a ruler, disposable razor knife, some Elmer's glue and some ordinary notebook paper will do. One doesn't do this to turn out thousands of them, but for experimental proof-of-concept purposes or making enough for hunting, they can provide another avenue of approach. One nice thing about PP is that there's no lead to steel contact at all, so your barrel stays clean of any lead fouling and soft lead can be driven hard with a paper jacket. There's a sticky on this site you can mine for info to see whether you'd like to give it a try.

I didn't notice any tight spots, but I was also using a pretty crude method(too soft of a wooden dowel and a big *** hammer lol.I didnt push the bullet all the way through the muzzle either, just into the rifling about 6 inches and back out(also squished it a bit in the middle from both sides to get better groove fill out). I also have an octagonal barrel so it sounds like that might be less of an issue. Either way I'm guessing it'll wear out any tight spots after 1000 jacketed rounds anyways. If this next test with bullets from a member here doesn't give me adequate results I might look into the paper patching to vary diameter more. From what I've been told on this thread and by PM it sounds like some larger softer bullets should work a lot better than what I've tried so far though.

I appreciate the suggestions a ton!

WRideout
04-17-2019, 04:55 PM
One alternative that hasn't been mentioned is trading for boolits that someone else has cast. I've gotten quite a few different types and calibers of boolits from people on this site, and have provided boolits that I have cast as well. Usually people will take brass, tools etc. for boolits. I don't usually see home cast boolits for sale, but if you put up a request in the appropriate sub-forum someone may just give you a sample of what you want. FWIW.

I just realized I didn't read a previous post completely.

Wayne

cmat1120
04-17-2019, 10:39 PM
One alternative that hasn't been mentioned is trading for boolits that someone else has cast. I've gotten quite a few different types and calibers of boolits from people on this site, and have provided boolits that I have cast as well. Usually people will take brass, tools etc. for boolits. I don't usually see home cast boolits for sale, but if you put up a request in the appropriate sub-forum someone may just give you a sample of what you want. FWIW.

I just realized I didn't read a previous post completely.

Wayne

That was my plan once I had enough posts to be allowed to make a WTT or WTB post. As a new member you're not allowed to do that though. Fortunately a moderator on here saw my thread and private messaged me and I just got the bullets today. Very excited to give them a test hopefully next week.