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Thread: Casting/loading for 25-20?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master brewer12345's Avatar
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    Casting/loading for 25-20?

    There is a Remington Model 25 hanging on the wall at the local shop that I pick up every time I walk in there. I don't know if I will end up buying it, but the cartridge and rifle seem like the sort of thing I would have fun fooling with. Brass appears rare as hen's teeth, but that seems like the only wrinkle.

    If I were to load for this thing, I would really only be interested in it as a target and small game proposition. Are there suitable molds for this rifle that are plain based? My reading suggests that 75 grain or lighter bullets are most likely to work.
    "If you see me running something has gone poorly, and you should probably run too." - any beekeeper

  2. #2
    Boolit Man
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    Dry tropics of Australia. Where crocs and Barra rule!
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    HI Mate
    I have a Marlin 27S and a Win 92 in 25-20.
    Short answer is there are plenty of molds available from old originals which if you wait can cost next to nothing through to pretty much any mold maker including MP molds (from memory) with NOE producing a few. Lee used to do one but not any more. If you can hunt around Gun Shows one will turn up eventually.

    It is also possible to buy pre mades.
    They are a surprising little cartridge and a hoot to shoot.
    Rem 25's are the strongest of the pumps and are a great light little gun with a reputation for good accuracy.
    Hope this helps

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    I have been loading 25-20 WCF ammo for a Savage Sporter for a while. This has been an on-and-off project that has recently come back into my attention span. The molds I have on hand at this time are Lyman 257420 (69 gr. RF-GC), Lyman 257463 (75 gr. RN-GC), Group Buy 6 cavity blocks (claimed 80 gr. but my alloy shows 77 gr. RF-GC) and an Ideal Perfection mold (adjustable core to cast various weights boolits, RF plain base). I have even used the Perfection mold to create 45 gr. boolits sized at .252" for 25 auto, but that is another story. And yes I have loaded some Hornady 60 gr. J-bullets. For brass I am reforming Starline 32-30 cases which work nicely. If it were not for my having the Perfection mold I would be shopping with Arsenal molds for a heavier boolit mold. Their mold designs and prices are attractive. You are facing a reasonable investment in the tooling to load this caliber but it is doable and the satisfaction you will earn easily helps you forget these costs.

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy
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    You can order any of the NOE molds with, without gc or mixed cavities. I have the 80 rf as a gc mold and the 260283 as a plainbase. Both are very accurate in my old M94 Marlin, but it has a faster twist liner in it.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

    Baja_Traveler's Avatar
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    25-20 is super easy to form from 32-20. It's the simplest intermediate step when I make 218 Bee brass.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  6. #6
    Boolit Master brewer12345's Avatar
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    Well, took a closer look at the rifle and it appears to have been refinished. Kills any collector value, but the bore looked OK and the action is smooth. Will have to decide if I want a project.
    "If you see me running something has gone poorly, and you should probably run too." - any beekeeper

  7. #7
    Boolit Master Bad Ass Wallace's Avatar
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    I shoot my little Winchester Lowall 32/20 and '92 lever 25/20 2-3 times every week, which would explain why I often run out of boolits. Brass has been unobtainable for the last 2 years or more so I reformed from Starline 32/20. Even made some 218 Mashburn Bee ammo!

    I load an 80gn 25 boolit in the 25/20 and a Lee 93gn in the 32/20, plain based for about $10/100: thats cheaper than rimfire ammo and a lot more fun.

    Hold Still Varmint; while I plugs Yer!

  8. #8
    Boolit Master brewer12345's Avatar
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    WADR, not cheaper than rimfire. Case of mini mags will run you $300 for 5000. That said, there is no comparing boolits you cast stuffed into cartridges you load that have loads you gave honed to great accuracy. I guess I have to look at this rifle and wonder whether I should just stick to my 357 levers that I can use to much the same effect without the headaches of unobtanium brass and a 1930s rifle.
    "If you see me running something has gone poorly, and you should probably run too." - any beekeeper

  9. #9
    Boolit Master


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    They're fun shooters and easy to reload. I have a M1894 Marlin that I rebarrelled to a faster twist and it shoots up to 100 grainers all right. Most people have had good lick with the 257420 and I have as well. Fairly flat shooting little rifle out to 100 yards or so. Easy on lead and powder and no recoil. I love mine./beagle
    diplomacy is being able to say, "nice doggie" until you find a big rock.....

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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