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Thread: Cast Pistol Boolits in 7.62x39?

  1. #1
    Boolit Bub 405grain's Avatar
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    Cast Pistol Boolits in 7.62x39?

    I have a bolt action in 7.62x39 that I built on a 1894 small ring Mauser. It shoots well with both the Lee 155 grain cast boolit and jacketed bullets. Because it's a bolt action it's a little more versatile than my SKS. A load that I'd like to try with this rifle for plinking and close range varminting would be the RCBS 32-98 SWC. Powder coated and sized to .312" this bullet weighs 101 grains. I'd like to develop some loads in the 1000 to 1200 fps range. Looking online I've seen very limited information on loading cast pistol bullets in this caliber. I've seen small charges of either titegroup or bullseye recommended on some sites, but not much else. Fast powders that I have on have on hand are Unique, HS-6, and Bluedot, but I would not mind getting other powders if they worked better. Can some of the other reloaders here suggest any loads for this case and boolit combination?

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  2. #2
    Boolit Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    I would be inclined to try .32-20 Winchester data in the 7.62x39 case and you shouldn't get into any trouble.

    About 5 grains of Unique would be a great place to start.
    The ENEMY is listening.
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  3. #3
    Boolit Master GhostHawk's Avatar
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    Agree the unique should work well.

    I have both a Yugo SKS, and a single shot 7.62x39 barrel for a handi rifle.

    For the yugo my standard load is the lee .312 185 gr gc over 20 grains of IMR 4895.
    This is about a third slower than factory loads, but the big bullet means even with the slower speed its still arriving with about the same energy. For me this is a good load. Golf ball sized groups at 50 yards with iron sights and old eyes is about as good as it gets.

    For the handi rifle barrel I have played with everything from the little .314 90 gr truncated cone over 4.6 grains of Red Dot on up. There are several "nodes" that will give you decent accuracy with Red Dot or similar powder as long as you don't need to cycle an action.

    Those loads in my SKS I just turn the gas off and shoot it like a straight pull bolt gun.
    Which makes it much easier to find brass.

    You might want to do a chamber cast/pound cast and find out what your throat/rifling looks like.

    In my SKS going below .312 = drastic leading, gobs and gobs of it.

    In the handi barrel .310 is fine and even .309 was no problem.
    But it does make a difference. Don't assume, know what you need and make sure you supply it.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master


    Larry Gibson's Avatar
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    Start at 4 gr Unique and work up to 6 gr. I found 2.7 gr Bullseye to be the best with a 90 cast SWC at 900+ fps out of my Mini Mk X bolt action 7.62x39. But then I don't PC......
    Larry Gibson

    “Deficient observation is merely a form of ignorance and responsible for the many morbid notions and foolish ideas prevailing.”
    ― Nikola Tesla

  5. #5
    Boolit Bub 405grain's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. This sounds like some good advise. I'll load up some test rounds with Unique. I'll start at 4 grains and work up in .2 grain increments. I was thinking that 6 grains would be the max for this type of round, but I'm more interested in accuracy than speed. When the groups tighten up, that will be the sweet spot that I'm looking for. After my next range trip I'll post the results.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master

    tranders's Avatar
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    I made up some plinking rounds for the Mosin with .312 100 grain powder coated SWC over 5 grains of Titegroup. Lots of fun to shoot and kept the group the size of a softball at 30 yards. Because these rounds are short with the pistol bullets they didn't feed very well through the mag,so I just loaded one at a time.
    I haven't ran these through a chrono,but they are super sonic.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    Watching with interest, my NO.1 in this caliber should feed these better than the SKS !
    “You don’t practice until you get it right. You practice until you can’t get it wrong.” Jason Elam, All-Pro kicker, Denver Broncos

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check