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Thread: .38 S&W is prudent gunsmith’s choice to restore antique rook rifles.

  1. #61
    Boolit Buddy BigEyeBob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uscra112 View Post
    That's neat. I see that the case of the 360 Rook is longer than our .38 S&W, too. Pics would be nice.
    I have pics of the rifle some where on my tablet ,tried to find them to post into the post ,but ****ed if I could track them down .I will endeavour to put some up even if I have to take some more.And I messed up on the mould size its 365 "not 375"as I stated .
    Last edited by BigEyeBob; 04-07-2019 at 07:45 AM.

  2. #62
    Boolit Buddy BigEyeBob's Avatar
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    Pics of my 360No 5 rook rifle .The ugly number stamping on the barrel was done by the British police or the police here in Oz ,because the rifle had no serial number that I could find .Pity they didn't use a smaller stamp .The number has PD after it signifying Police Department ,number required for registration.Very tidy rifle for its age ,has a saftey at the top of the action which blocks the tumbler and striker ,rather than the trigger like on some Martinis . Also a cocking indicator (teardrop shaped lever on the side of the action) .The barrel and full length rib are one piece ,the rib has not been joined to the barrel afterwards . Have never seen this feature before .The 380 Rook is pretty much the 38 long colt I believe ,IIRC the 360no5 case is slightly longer by a few thousands ,.020" ,will have to check that .Unlike the later BSA small frame actions the gizzards of this action are not in an inner frame ,they are held in with screws through the frame sides ,of which the heads are locked with keeper screws .The innards come out individually and it was a challenge to get all the components lined up to reassemble it .Need more than two hands .As far as it being a Francotte action ,I maybe wrong but I have another martini of similar vintage thats almost identical with Francotte proof marks ,but in 300Sherwood ,but this one instead of having a 300 bore ,it slugs at 312 ".Any hoo I 'm going to enjoy shooting this little gem.Just need to cast some boolits and load up .
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    Last edited by BigEyeBob; 04-07-2019 at 08:46 AM.

  3. #63
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    Ah yes, Lovely it truly is.

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  4. #64
    Boolit Bub Ajohns's Avatar
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    I don't know how fast I will get to it, but picked up a .357 barrel this week. I have access to a lathe and will be fitting to my Hopkins and Allen 932 as soon as I can. Can't wait to try it out, pics to follow.

  5. #65
    Boolit Buddy BigEyeBob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajohns View Post
    I don't know how fast I will get to it, but picked up a .357 barrel this week. I have access to a lathe and will be fitting to my Hopkins and Allen 932 as soon as I can. Can't wait to try it out, pics to follow.
    Ive made 100 cases from 38 special Eagle cases , acquired a CBE mould that drops a 265 " cast boolit , and ordered a set of 360 #5 dies from CH4D , Ill be casting some projectiles and loading them up soon .The dies were posted three or four days ago and I expect them here within the next two weeks , pending customs and if I have to pay tax on them . I have a new Lyman lube die for 363" so I can push them through and lube them easily . I already had a mould for 380 rook another CBE job ,378 heeled but the bore in my rifle slugs at 362" so I determined that my rifle is a 360 # 5 not 380 as it is marked . The 378 diameter boolit would be too much of a squeeze for my liking .Any way Ill report back when I get some results .

  6. #66
    Boolit Buddy quail4jake's Avatar
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    I really like the idea of the .38 S&W in a rifle. I always thought I'd like to take a Marlin 1894 full mag rifle chambered in .357 Mag and take a bit off the breach to rechamber in .38 S&W. I'm guessing the capacity at well over 20 and the fat bore microgroove barrel eats .360 sized boolits anyway...
    Imagine that combined with a S&W perfected double action as backup! Now that's a steel clanging, groundhog spinnin' duo!

  7. #67
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quail4jake View Post
    I really like the idea of the .38 S&W in a rifle. I always thought I'd like to take a Marlin 1894 full mag rifle chambered in .357 Mag and take a bit off the breach to rechamber in .38 S&W. I'm guessing the capacity at well over 20 and the fat bore microgroove barrel eats .360 sized boolits anyway...
    Imagine that combined with a S&W perfected double action as backup! Now that's a steel clanging, groundhog spinnin' duo!
    Although most people don't realize it, MANY common .38/.357 DA revolvers have chambers which are large enough on the back end to accept REMINGTON (R-P headstamp) factory .38 S&W ammo or handloads assembled in R-P .38 S&W brass so that you can use them like "shorts." Use your .38/.357 sizer with either a .38 S&W RCBS Cowboy expander and seater, or you can use a 9x18 MAK expander and seater if you already have them. A 9mm seater will work if you use a full-diameter .358" expander plug and flare brass a bit to start the .359-.360" bullets.

    It also works great to use 148-grain soft swaged factory HBWC wadcutters, loading them in .38 S&W brass, seating them out long and crimping to 1.20" OAL with the same 2.7-2.8 grains of Bullseye you would use in .38 wadcutters at the same OAL.

    This works only because Remington .38 S&W brass is smaller in diameter ahead of the rim than Starline, W-W, older Western, Rem-UMC, Kynoch or Fiocchi. None of those other .38 S&W brass will fit.

    My S&W Model 940 9mm will fire R-P .38 S&W and .38 Colt New Police ammo without clips, and 9mm Para with clips. I can also use R-P headstamp .38 S&W in my S&W Model 36 (no-dash), my Model 37-1, both of my Model 12-2s, my Model 10-5, my Ruger Speed Six, and S&W Model 28-2 Highway Patrolman.

    Not Camp Perry target accuracy, but fine for plinking and trapline work at close range where you don't need a heavy load.

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    Last edited by Outpost75; 05-17-2019 at 07:41 AM.
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  8. #68
    Boolit Buddy BigEyeBob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigEyeBob View Post
    Ive made 100 cases from 38 special Eagle cases , acquired a CBE mould that drops a 265 " cast boolit , and ordered a set of 360 #5 dies from CH4D , Ill be casting some projectiles and loading them up soon .The dies were posted three or four days ago and I expect them here within the next two weeks , pending customs and if I have to pay tax on them . I have a new Lyman lube die for 363" so I can push them through and lube them easily . I already had a mould for 380 rook another CBE job ,378 heeled but the bore in my rifle slugs at 362" so I determined that my rifle is a 360 # 5 not 380 as it is marked . The 378 diameter boolit would be too much of a squeeze for my liking .Any way Ill report back when I get some results .
    So I have the dies and have cast some boolits .Next is to size the boolits and load some up .I need to make a new expander for the dies ,not sure what CH4D had in mind when they made them but they seem to have made the fls die for a 357 bullet and an expander at .360" .Ill be sizing the boooits to .363 " and the expander is way too long and cant get the flaring bit near the case mouth to give a little flare .Rather than send them all the way back and suffer a long wait Ill try to mod them myself .


    So I made a larger expander at .2625 " added a small flaring section just to give a tiny flare to the front edge of the case mouth . Seated a boolit to the correctbdepth and ended up with a handsome looking cartridge .Now to load some up ,Trailboss or RedDot will do the job Id reckon .
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    Last edited by BigEyeBob; 06-15-2019 at 06:50 AM.

  9. #69
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    An Update...

    How heavy a bullet can you shoot in a .38 S&W revolver and Rook rifle, and have it exit the barrel, be "combat accurate" and have low noise level with still good penetration adequate to shoot through a deer?

    Well, we got the answer now!

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    Accurate 36-240H was designed with the intent to be the heaviest plainbased bullet which would be stable at subsonic velocity when fired from a 1:16" twist of rifling in the .35 Remington, for use with a "can."

    I specifically wanted to further explore the Rook Rifle and "Low Noise Blooper" load concept, seeking the lowest velocity which reliably exited a rifle barrel, about 700 fps, while using a fast-twist barrel, to ensure that the bullet would be well stablized to give the deepest possible penetration to shoot clear through any dinosaurs raiding my vegetable garden, and do so without disturbing the neighbors.

    So I loaded some test rounds in .38 S&W cases with 3 grains of AutoComp. Upon chambering, the bullet nose is lightly engraved. Velocity from the 20-inch barrel at about 720 fps with a mild report like a .22LR. Penetration is amazing, zipping through EIGHT 1-gallon water jugs, straight through like a laser, with absolutely no signs of yaw, thanks to using a the 1:10" twist Green Mountain 9mm Parabellum spec. "Gunsmith Special" barrel. The fired bullet pictured was captured in a 5-gallon jug of kitty litter placed as a backtop behind the 8th water jug.

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    I got an X-ring 25-yard group from the Lettuce Protector using simple open sights, and firing over the chronograph. I'll take it.

    I also shot a few from my 5" S&W Victory Model because I wanted to see whether they keyholed in a slow revolver twist. Not exactly Camp Perry match accuracy, but "Combat-Accurate." There was one full-profile keyhole out of ten shots, but the keyholed shot would have still been on an "E" silhouette at 25 yards. Grouping was about the same as 178-grain WW2-era Mk2z FMJ. The Point of impact is quite high to the sights, as would be expected, given the heavy bullet. The 240-grain .38 S&W load with 3 grains of AutoComp gives 617 fps from the 5-inch Victory .38. It kicks like a .455! and probably hits like one too! I gotta shoot some more water jugs with this load in the revolver. Given that the bullet holes from the revolver DO show yaw, I'd bet they will likely tumble in soft targets and should be deadly at CQB distances.
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  10. #70
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    Outpost75, that is just to cool. I was gonna try my Saeco 250gr FP's in my 38 Special Contender carbine, but have not as yet. Todd/3leg
    Last edited by 3leggedturtle; 03-28-2020 at 08:27 PM.

  11. #71
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheshire Dave View Post
    How well do you think a Stevens 101 44 shot gun would work? With the takedown Barrel it seems like it would be easy to make a second barrel for the gun and it's already a Centerfire. Seems like just a barrel and a separate extractor and you could keep the original 44 shot Barrel.

    Sent from my SM-J320V using Tapatalk

    That is exactly what I did..John Taylor is "da Man" who can do this for you and has my reamer!!
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  12. #72
    Boolit Buddy
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    Can that boolit be made to work in a Marlin 94 in 357 Mag, perhaps with shortened cases? Probably would still be a single load only proposition.


    Quote Originally Posted by Outpost75 View Post
    An Update...

    How heavy a bullet can you shoot in a .38 S&W revolver and Rook rifle, and have it exit the barrel, be "combat accurate" and have low noise level with still good penetration adequate to shoot through a deer?

    Well, we got the answer now!

    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	259165Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	259166

    Accurate 36-240H was designed with the intent to be the heaviest plainbased bullet which would be stable at subsonic velocity when fired from a 1:16" twist of rifling in the .35 Remington, for use with a "can."

    I specifically wanted to further explore the Rook Rifle and "Low Noise Blooper" load concept, seeking the lowest velocity which reliably exited a rifle barrel, about 700 fps, while using a fast-twist barrel, to ensure that the bullet would be well stablized to give the deepest possible penetration to shoot clear through any dinosaurs raiding my vegetable garden, and do so without disturbing the neighbors.

    So I loaded some test rounds in .38 S&W cases with 3 grains of AutoComp. Upon chambering, the bullet nose is lightly engraved. Velocity from the 20-inch barrel at about 720 fps with a mild report like a .22LR. Penetration is amazing, zipping through EIGHT 1-gallon water jugs, straight through like a laser, with absolutely no signs of yaw, thanks to using a the 1:10" twist Green Mountain 9mm Parabellum spec. "Gunsmith Special" barrel. The fired bullet pictured was captured in a 5-gallon jug of kitty litter placed as a backtop behind the 8th water jug.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I got an X-ring 25-yard group from the Lettuce Protector using simple open sights, and firing over the chronograph. I'll take it.

    I also shot a few from my 5" S&W Victory Model because I wanted to see whether they keyholed in a slow revolver twist. Not exactly Camp Perry match accuracy, but "Combat-Accurate." There was one full-profile keyhole out of ten shots, but the keyholed shot would have still been on an "E" silhouette at 25 yards. Grouping was about the same as 178-grain WW2-era Mk2z FMJ. The Point of impact is quite high to the sights, as would be expected, given the heavy bullet. The 240-grain .38 S&W load with 3 grains of AutoComp gives 617 fps from the 5-inch Victory .38. It kicks like a .455! and probably hits like one too! I gotta shoot some more water jugs with this load in the revolver. Given that the bullet holes from the revolver DO show yaw, I'd bet they will likely tumble in soft targets and should be deadly at CQB distances.

  13. #73
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    I inserted and epoxied a 16" 9mm barrel blank turned to fit the inside of the 12 gauge shotgun barrel on an old Iver Johnson frame and then cut the chamber for a 38-44 Bain & Davis. eventually, I will make an extractor for the smaller diamter case but for now, a smallflat-bladed screwdriver I have in the butt of the shotgun works for when my fingernails can't pop the empty case out. I've trimmed the shotgun barrel down and mounted a scope rail on top for a light single-shot stalking rifle. 90gr and 124gr 9mm cast lead bullets make great rabbit loads and if I want to use it for deer, heavier bullets in 38 caliber can be used for more impact. I'm not going to try to replicate a 35 Remington with this cartridge but it does make use of the large number of 44 Magnum cases I find each year at the range prior to deer season without my having to invest in another caliber of bullet molds.

    And if I hadn't used the old Iver johnson singleshot, it would have sat in my local gunshop's bargain barrel until he got tired of seeing it and destroyed it and took it off his books. total invested...under $150 because the dies were a bargain on Ebay for $35.
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  14. #74
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by junkbug View Post
    Can that boolit be made to work in a Marlin 94 in 357 Mag, perhaps with shortened cases? Probably would still be a single load only proposition.
    Either use .38 Long Colt brass in the .357 magnum or trim .38 Special cases 0.95" to stay within 1.60" OAL to feed from magazine.
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  15. #75
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    John Taylot is on my short list for new projects once I get a few other projects in line. I've been looking for an excuse for a singleshot rimmed 300BLK built off a 357 Magnum case for a while.

    Bruce
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  16. #76
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    Thanks!

  17. #77
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Have ordered a 36-220H mold from Accurate with same 0.6" nose length, but shorter overall length to better stabilize in the S&W Victory Model .380-200 revolvers, and also reducing seating depth to reduce pressure. This 215-220 grain flatnosed bullet in COWW will give 1.40" overall cartridge length in .38 S&W brass, and produce about 620 fps from a 5-inch barrel with 2.5 grains of Bullseye or 3.0 grains of AutoComp.

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    Last edited by Outpost75; 04-01-2020 at 03:55 PM.
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  18. #78
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    On the Stevens Model 101 .44Shot gun; the one I have has a 2" deep chamber, not that 2" .410 shells are readily available these days. I have trimmed a few .444 Marlin cases to fit the chamber but will load them with around 140 grains of shot, at least to start.

    It is a very tiny gun to be trying a 2" .410 from, at least with my face on the stock.

    The gun is destined to be either a .22 Ladybug rifle or a .32 S&W Long bunnygun.

    So many projects, so little time.

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  19. #79
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    For years I have been shooting round balls in an H&R single shot .357Magnum. The problem of 'too much' case capacity is solved by seating the projectile very deep. The same should be true when seating a long heavy bullet in the longer case. Seat the bullet so that the case capacity remaining under the bullet will be the same as the case capacity for the shorter .38 S&W. That is an advantage of single shot guns. One does not need to concern oneself with magazines or feeding configurations.

  20. #80
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    Some of the 19th century English ammunition companies produced ammunition like this, with a ball seated deeply on a reduced load of black powder. The case would be crimped right above the ball. I have seen examples in .360 x 2 1/4" BPE.

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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