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Thread: Anyone here ever formed any S&W .38/44 ( "long" ) Cases out of something else?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master 15meter's Avatar
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    I didn't dig too far checking if these will do the job, just thinking off the top of my head they might work:
    https://www.starlinebrass.com/brass-...1-Blank-Brass/

    But I've been wrong before, just ask my mother-in-law....................

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by 15meter View Post
    I didn't dig too far checking if these will do the job, just thinking off the top of my head they might work:
    https://www.starlinebrass.com/brass-...1-Blank-Brass/

    But I've been wrong before, just ask my mother-in-law....................
    Thanks for the link!

    Unfortunately, those are too large a diameter...the 38-40 WCF is a different Ballgame ( much larger base diameter ) from the .38-44 S&W round.

    The ones I am after are same diameter as .38 S & W, only a lot longer.

  3. #23
    Hello Oyeboten,

    I did some digging on this and found,
    http://rvbprecision.com/shooting/sw-...reloading.html
    Looks to be an early Target Cartridge. Must have been a step after Heeled Bullets.

    Hope this helps, AntiqueSledMan.

  4. #24
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    OYE-

    Howdy !

    Wouldn’t that be something like the .35 Legend ?


    With regards,
    357Mag

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by AntiqueSledMan View Post
    Hello Oyeboten,

    I did some digging on this and found,
    http://rvbprecision.com/shooting/sw-...reloading.html
    Looks to be an early Target Cartridge. Must have been a step after Heeled Bullets.

    Hope this helps, AntiqueSledMan.
    Yup!

    That's the one!

    I did get 100 .357 Maximum new unprimed Brass.

    I need to find or make a Plug to expand the cases so I can Load my .361 Bullets, and go from there.

    Searching ebay, I find no .361 Sizing Dies for Cast Bullets, been looking for a Month or more...but, my Mould drops them at a nice .361 so all is well there.

    The .38 S & W Loading Die Set I have, there is only a re-sizing die for the outside of the Case, no expanding die for the inside, so..

    I need to come up with something for that.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by 357Mag View Post
    OYE-

    Howdy !

    Wouldn’t that be something like the .35 Legend ?


    With regards,
    357Mag
    Uhhhhh...no...Lol...

    .35 Legend is a rimless Cartridge, and probably a little too small in diameter also.

    The Cartridge Brass I am after is Rimmed, and is in effect a long version of the .38 S & W Cartridge, so the Bullet is .361 in Diameter, and it is a Black Powder Cartridge, running at most, maybe 17,000 PSI or usually less, depending on what Bullet one is using.

    Full House Loads would be a little more powerful than original Factory Black Powder 38 Special, simply because one can use a same weight ( if slightly larger diameter ) Bullet if one wants to, and have a fair amount more Black Powder behind it than the .38 Special would have held.

    There's no reason really to do that, but...one could..!

  7. #27
    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    Look into Lee dies for the 9mm Makarov for your expander plug. Their "powder thru" expander is what you need. The sizer might do for neck sizing your brass. Will depend on the wall thickness at the mouth that you end up with.

    And there's somebody (one of the mould makers) who supplies lubrisizer dies in any dimension you want. If you have a lathe, making your own dies is an easy exercise. (Buy the correct chucking reamer to finish the bore.) I've got half a dozen custom sizers which I made as needed, being addicted to obsolete calibers myself.
    flectere si nequeo superos, acheronta movebo

  8. #28
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by uscra112 View Post
    Look into Lee dies for the 9mm Makarov for your expander plug. Their "powder thru" expander is what you need. The sizer might do for neck sizing your brass. Will depend on the wall thickness at the mouth that you end up with.

    And there's somebody (one of the mould makers) who supplies lubrisizer dies in any dimension you want. If you have a lathe, making your own dies is an easy exercise. (Buy the correct chucking reamer to finish the bore.) I've got half a dozen custom sizers which I made as needed, being addicted to obsolete calibers myself.
    No Metal Lathe here, but I do have a Wood Lathe and I do a lot of Spindle Turning.

    I can likely modify and existing expander Plug okay, so I will get a 'Lee' expander Plug for 9mm Makarov, which I think will come as .365 Diameter, and if if is not too hard-hardened, and is Steel, I could reduce the Diameter of the business end to be 361...and it'd likely fit my Lee Loading Dies for the .38 S & W, so, that would be well worth looking into...that'd be a lot easier than making one from scratch.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by Oyeboten; 07-06-2019 at 04:14 PM.

  9. #29
    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    If you buy the Makarov set. you won't need to make an expander plug. The one that's inside their "powder-through" die will do nicely for cast bullets. I use all three Mak dies in loading for my .38/200 Webley-Enfield, which is just the .38 S&W with a .363 200 grain bullet. Even the seater works for me. And yes, I made my own lubrisizer die for that job. With your long case, you'll only have the die body threaded into the press a couple-or-three turns, which is the only potential issue. Remind me of how long your case will be, and I can check that out for you. I have plenty of .357 Max brass, so can afford to sacrifice one for a test.

    If you feel that you must make an expander plug, the Lee expander is just a short length of round bar stock, 1.424 long x .562 OD, with a hole thru the middle, (which you could omit) and the expander plug turned on the end. Plug is just .163 long. You could make one on your wood lathe, but as I say, I think the MAK expander will work for you. It does flare the case mouth, and you want to be careful not to flare too much.
    flectere si nequeo superos, acheronta movebo

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by uscra112 View Post
    If you buy the Makarov set. you won't need to make an expander plug. The one that's inside their "powder-through" die will do nicely for cast bullets. I use all three Mak dies in loading for my .38/200 Webley-Enfield, which is just the .38 S&W with a .363 200 grain bullet. Even the seater works for me. And yes, I made my own lubrisizer die for that job. With your long case, you'll only have the die body threaded into the press a couple-or-three turns, which is the only potential issue. Remind me of how long your case will be, and I can check that out for you. I have plenty of .357 Max brass, so can afford to sacrifice one for a test.

    If you feel that you must make an expander plug, the Lee expander is just a short length of round bar stock, 1.424 long x .562 OD, with a hole thru the middle, (which you could omit) and the expander plug turned on the end. Plug is just .163 long. You could make one on your wood lathe, but as I say, I think the MAK expander will work for you. It does flare the case mouth, and you want to be careful not to flare too much.
    Max Case length would seem to be about 1.470

    The Old Loaded Cartridge I have are about 1.464

    The .357 Maximum Brass I got seem to be right on at 1.5 OAL

    My New Model 3 Chambers are .487 in diameter.

    The old .38/44 Cartridges I have are .483 in diameter at the base.

    What are the Chambers of your .38-200 Revolver?

  11. #31
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    My Himmelwright pattern Wadcutter 'Ideal' Mold drops the Boolits at a nice convenient .361.

    I am worried if I expand the Cartridge Cases too much, then my Boolits will be too loose, or, I could 're-size' over the Case a ways, if I had a Die to do it with.

    Don't ask me why, but, apparently the original .38/44 Cartridges were never crimped, the Bullets were just supposed to stay in the Case as an act of Faith or something..! - and when seated in a ways, were just supposed to stay on the how-ever much compressed 3F Black Powder charge, and not creep forward to make for an Air gap.

    It seems odd to me anyway...especially if for longer distance shooting, which these Revolvers were used for, the Ballistics would have or could have been spunkier than for ( the later ) .38 Special, so, I'd expect the Bullets to just creep on out and jam things up if not crimped or otherwise prevented.

    I have not measured to find out how many Grains of 3F Black Powder one can fit with light compression, ( since all my original Cartridges are old Factory looking Loads and I have no empties ) under say, a 158 Grain DEWC, but, given their respective seating depths at max powder charge, it is a little more anyway, a little more than would have fit in the original .38 Special...and, of course, Target Shooters would have been doing whatever they felt interesting or suitable to do.

    Probably they did crimp when the Bullet was flush to the Case lips and a flat front sort to allow it.

  12. #32
    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oyeboten View Post
    Max Case length would seem to be about 1.470

    The Old Loaded Cartridge I have are about 1.464

    The .357 Maximum Brass I got seem to be right on at 1.5 OAL

    My New Model 3 Chambers are .487 in diameter.

    The old .38/44 Cartridges I have are .483 in diameter at the base.

    What are the Chambers of your .38-200 Revolver?
    I hope you meant to type .387 and .383 ! If not, we're in a whole 'nuther ballpark!

    Possibly the round was only meant for single shots? When Stevens introduced the .22 Long Rifle it was meant only for their single shot rifles and pistols, and was not crimped. Only much later did the ammo companies start to crimp it for use in repeaters.

    Clarify for me: Is this round really meant for a revolver?

    As for using the Makarov dies......I was a little overoptimistic. A .357 Max case, untrimmed, would force me to shorten the Lee expander plug by at least 1/2", so as to let me screw the die into my RCBS Junior press a few threads and lock it.. Other presses have the die bolster farther from the ram, but not much farther. So it's not as simple as I thought, but still do-able. The plug not being threaded, you could do a decent job of shortening it on a bench grinder or a belt sander.

    The Mak "expander" is really no more than a flaring tool, it doesn't expand down inside the case at all.

    Seating your bullet can be done in the MAK die, but you won't be able to use the full ram stroke. The die can't be backed up out of the upper bolster enough. It does not crimp. Remember that the MAK is a rimless case that headspaces on the case mouth.

    Which still leaves us needing a way to crimp, or at least iron out the flare. I use the sizer die for that task in my .32 Colt reloading. Irons out the flare, but does not crimp. Ought to work for you, (again not using the full stroke of the ram.)

    n.b. The MAK sizer in the Lee set is carbide, and I get the I.D. as .383". It can size the case mouth for you if, again, you don't use the full stroke of the ram. It could even full length size if it comes to that. You shouldn't have to do that very often.
    flectere si nequeo superos, acheronta movebo

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by uscra112 View Post
    I hope you meant to type .387 and .383 ! If not, we're in a whole 'nuther ballpark!
    Yep!

    .383

    I double checked, just to be sure.

    I measured a once-fired .38 S&W Case also, and it too is .383 at the lower end of the case.

    Possibly the round was only meant for single shots? When Stevens introduced the .22 Long Rifle it was meant only for their single shot rifles and pistols, and was not crimped. Only much later did the ammo companies start to crimp it for use in repeaters.

    Clarify for me: Is this round really meant for a revolver?
    Good observation and question!

    I know of no single shot Pistols chambering it at that time, or, not until some ways in to the Model 1891 Single Shot, which could be ordered to be chambered for it, ( even if almost no one did order it to be that chambering ) but otherwise, it was strictly for use in the Smith & Wesson 'New Model 3' Target Revolvers.


    As for using the Makarov dies......I was a little overoptimistic. A .357 Max case, untrimmed, would force me to shorten the Lee expander plug by at least 1/2", so as to let me screw the die into my RCBS Junior press a few threads and lock it.. Other presses have the die bolster farther from the ram, but not much farther. So it's not as simple as I thought, but still do-able. The plug not being threaded, you could do a decent job of shortening it on a bench grinder or a belt sander.

    The Mak "expander" is really no more than a flaring tool, it doesn't expand down inside the case at all.
    Ahhhhhh...okay...

    Yeah, I need something to expand the .357 Maximum Cases so they can accept a .361 diameter Bullet.

    Seating your bullet can be done in the MAK die, but you won't be able to use the full ram stroke. The die can't be backed up out of the upper bolster enough. It does not crimp. Remember that the MAK is a rimless case that headspaces on the case mouth.
    Okay...

    I should be able to seat okay with my little set of .38 S & W Loading dies...seating with this Cartridge of course, the Bullet is all the way inside the Cartridge Case. And like all my other Seating Dies, we can be sure the Seater will not fit the Bullet Nose at all ( Lol...), but, it will still work okay if the Case is of the right ID...will not leave much of a mark.

    Darn it, I had a lovely, super low use, always indoor kept, 1934 South Bend Lathe, with all the Back Gearing and some other goodies, and when I got it I was buried alive in Work, got Flooded, had too much else going on, and never got to it, then sold it in the massive Purge to "lighten the Load" to move to the Mid West from out West.

    I wish I would have kept it..!

    I knew I would need it as time went on, and that I would then be able to do a lot of neat things, which I can not do otherwise...

    Oh well...sigh...

    Sizing die punches, Loading die Seating insert-dies, etc, would be very easy to make with a nice Metal Lathe.

    I blew it..!

    Which still leaves us needing a way to crimp, or at least iron out the flare. I use the sizer die for that task in my .32 Colt reloading. Irons out the flare, but does not crimp. Ought to work for you, (again not using the full stroke of the ram.)

    n.b. The MAK sizer in the Lee set is carbide, and I get the I.D. as .383". It can size the case mouth for you if, again, you don't use the full stroke of the ram. It could even full length size if it comes to that. You shouldn't have to do that very often.
    I can likely crimp okay with the set of ordinary .38 S & W Loading dies I have, but, we'll have to see...since I am not going to be running the Crimp Die over an exposed Bullet, so, even if the Crimp Die is a little under-size, it ought to still work okay.

    So, other than a Case Trimmer ( which I am trying to take the crash course on ), I think the only other thing I need is an expander of some sort, so the .357 Maximum Cases can be made a little larger in ID for a little ways down anyway, to accept the .361 Bullets I will be using.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    Boy, that's some kinda revolver, to take a case that long!

    OK, expander. What have you got for rifle dies? .30-30 on up. Got a long-body Lyman M die?

    n.b. 'bout that lathe. I know what you mean. In 1993 I had to yank stakes and move from Rhode Island to Michigan for a job. Had to sell a lovely Monarch 10EE in a hurry. And a good Millport mill.
    flectere si nequeo superos, acheronta movebo

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by uscra112 View Post
    Boy, that's some kinda revolver, to take a case that long!

    OK, expander. What have you got for rifle dies? .30-30 on up. Got a long-body Lyman M die?

    n.b. 'bout that lathe. I know what you mean. In 1993 I had to yank stakes and move from Rhode Island to Michigan for a job. Had to sell a lovely Monarch 10EE in a hurry. And a good Millport mill.
    The only Dies I have for Rifle are a set of "Redding" Dies for the old 9.3 x 62 Mauser Cartridge...which, if it even has an expander at all, would be a little bit too big ( ie: .366 ish ).

    I will take apart my .38 S & W Loading Die ( or whatever Die ) and see how an expander would have to fit in to it, and, I can likely make the part one way or another...shape it carefully, and polish the end of it so it can perform nicely without dragging or sticking too bad...that and some Dry Lube or other of course.

  16. #36
    Boolit Master uscra112's Avatar
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    Was looking for a Lyman M die that you could modify, and this cropped up.

    https://www.amazon.com/LEE-PRECISION...ateway&sr=8-11
    flectere si nequeo superos, acheronta movebo

  17. #37
    Boolit Master Harter66's Avatar
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    Maybe a fat HBWC might be in order too .
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  18. #38
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by uscra112 View Post
    Was looking for a Lyman M die that you could modify, and this cropped up.

    https://www.amazon.com/LEE-PRECISION...ateway&sr=8-11
    Cool Die!

    But I think all it does it make the tiny Flair on the Case Mouth for hand starting a Bullet which will then be pressed in via one's Seating Die.

    I need to expand the Case itself down a ways from .357 to .361 in order for my Boolit to be able to fit completely inside the Case.

    Granted, the Case will Fire Form to whatever degree once fired, but initial Loadings, if they are to have right size Boolits, I would like to be able to enlarge the Case diameter down about 5/8ths of an inch or so, so the entire length of the Boolit is inside the Case.

    These Cases are the full length of the Cylinder so the Boolit can not stick out at all.
    Last edited by Oyeboten; 07-09-2019 at 12:23 AM.

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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
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