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Thread: 38-55 shot shells

  1. #1
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    38-55 shot shells

    Has anyone tried this? Any advice would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Boolit Buddy hockeynick39's Avatar
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    Nope, but have a 38-55 and am intrigued. What are you thinking, shot size, shot type, and powder?

  3. #3
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    I'm curious if anyone has done it. I make my own for .41 magnum with card wads and #12 shot and they work great. The 38-55's longer case gives me pause. It's almost grasshopper season.

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  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy
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    Texas:

    I made some shot loads for my 45/70.
    Out of a 24" rifle barrel the shot was so disbursed
    at 6-7 yards that it was ineffective.
    A short barrel pistol might be a different story.

  5. #5
    Boolit Grand Master

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    I think it could be done and made to work well. I wouldnt just dump powder wads and shot into a case though. Heres how I believe I would try it first.
    Make a mandrel the sized so that 2 wraps of typing pper are .370 dia or so od.
    Cut paper templates to make 2 wraps evenly round the mandrel a width of the bigger bullets maybe 3/4" -1 1/4" roll this and lightly glue it with mucilage. roll one end over mandrel to close end.
    Fill with shot to where a card board wad just sets a little below edge of tube and glue it in. Load with rolled over end out. And a heavy wad .060 under it. This will 1 increase the shot load up to a more filling load. The paper may not transfer twist spin to the shot and should cone off at the muzzle releasing charge. A rifled barrel really disrupts patterns making for a very short range load normally.

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    Thank you, Country Gent. Let the tinkering begin.......

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  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    Tex I like the idea, I'm thinking something like 5 grains of unique a .36 cal wonder wad as an over powder wad then some #8's or 9's with just enough room for another wonder wad to be roll crimped in place. You need to keep the velocity down or because of the rifling or the pattern will look like a doughnut. I wish I still had my high wall this sound like a fun experiment.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master Jedman's Avatar
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    I know everything is bigger in Texas but are your grasshoppers big enough to put on the grill ?

    Jedman

  9. #9
    Subscribed. I like the paper shot was idea.
    I think I tired this with my TC Renegade 56 smoothbore back when. I found sometimes the paper held together and worked like a big old safety slug.

  10. #10
    Boolit Grand Master

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    In a lever action the shot contained in the case is the way it needs to be. In a single shot the paper tube can be longer and extend out increasing the charge. In a magazine the tube might be damaged or broken

  11. #11
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    I made one with a paper shot sleeve & I cut overpowder and overshot wads from a Magpul package, using a chamfered 38-55 case. Over 9 grs of Unique I added a .41 mag case full of #12 and sealed with candle wax. This pattern was at 15 feet which is long serpentrodent range. I found charred paper 5 ft from the target- So it works. Single shot style only is ok with me. I may fireform out some 30-30 brass for designated shot shell use. I'll put some more together and do more testing now. The shot charge weighed around 220 grs- 1/2oz!

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  12. #12
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Looks pretty good there

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy hockeynick39's Avatar
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    Too funny!!!!! About what I was thinking on a pattern for that. Yes, the grasshoppers are big down here and the locusts are bigger yet. I'm thinking I'll just stick with the l' .410 and .45 ACP shot shells. I generally carry two rigs (.41 Mag with HP/FN full loads on cross draw and a 625 JM with the shot loads for snake) on me along with a long gun when walking the brush anyway.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master redhawk0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by country gent View Post
    A rifled barrel really disrupts patterns making for a very short range load normally.
    I believe what happens is the shot "cluster" is spinning when it leaves the barrel. Its natural tendency (physics) would cause the shot pellets to move in a tangent to its rotation. This causes a "donut" pattern that you hear people talk about when shooting shot from a long rifle barrel. With a pistol it doesn't matter as much. The shorter barrel won't have as much rotational effect since it is being accelerated out the barrel before the majority of the shot "cluster" starts to rotate.

    Good info country gent.

    redhawk

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  15. #15
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    I've always considered 10 foot long range for snakes anyway with these types of loads. I see gaps in the pattern that will probably close at shorter range. A handgun does make more sense but if snakes are really thick I'd carry a real shotgun or stay away.

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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