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Thread: Revolver shot loads that WORK!

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by caillouetr9981 View Post
    With the snake population down here, you need to either be an expert pistol shot or have a shotshell alternative.

    For years, I have used a simple method. Take a 38Special case, add 2.3gr. of Red dot, shove a GC on top, then fill the case with #9 shot and cap it with an inverted GC and crimp it slightly.
    I usually go the extra by painting the end with some nail polish. This works great on snakes out to 20 feet or so.
    I suspect you exaggerate a bit about the effective range of that being 20 feet. I've done the exact same thing in the past with .357 Magnum and #9 as you say with the gas checks and the pattern density was about five pellets per square foot at seven yards. Not too good for killing snakes. Even with 255 grains of #9 in .45 Colt from a 7-1/2" bbl and a good, taped wad, the pattern density at seven yards is only about two dozen per square foot, that's why I go to all the trouble to make my own custom wads.

    Gear

  2. #22
    Boolit Master JIMinPHX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by geargnasher View Post
    Maybe you can tinker with the idea and sell a few if you ever run out of something to do.
    Yea, run out of things to do, that will be right after I win the lottery.
    “an armed society is a polite society.”
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    "Idque apud imperitos humanitas vocabatur, cum pars servitutis esset."
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  3. #23
    Boolit Master crabo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JIMinPHX View Post
    Yea, run out of things to do, that will be right after I win the lottery.
    I seriously doubt that you would be able to run out of things to do if you won the lottery. You would have so many projects, you would never get done.
    Crabo

    Do not argue with idiots. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

  4. #24
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    How do you go about making the plastic bases of these wads fuse together?

    Heat, I presume, but how is the heat applied? Do you fold over the petals of the plastic and just cook 'em with a propane torch, or how do you do it?

    Any photos or video of how you do this? I'm curious as I just can't picture it in my head very well.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by inuhbad View Post
    How do you go about making the plastic bases of these wads fuse together?

    Heat, I presume, but how is the heat applied? Do you fold over the petals of the plastic and just cook 'em with a propane torch, or how do you do it?

    Any photos or video of how you do this? I'm curious as I just can't picture it in my head very well.
    This is the part that's difficult to describe. See post #8, picture #3, I captured the molten plastic end after warming with a propane torch (heat gun would be better). Once the plastic is clear, it is hot enough to form (it's like hot glue). Then I take the side of a knife blade and just kind of roll/push/smush the molten plastic into the pocket at the end of the mandrel like buttering a biscuit. The molten plastic flows together and "homogenizes" nicely, just don't overheat it or it will be brittle and crumbly. When the plastic is "mounded" into the end of the tool, I press it firmly against a flat surface to pressure-form the plastic flush with the end of the forming collar, leaving a flat solid base for the shot cup that is the thickness of the difference between the mandrel and forming collar (.020" or so the way I do it). Any excess (usually none, I figured the length of the wad blank to have the exact amount necessary sticking out) is squeezed out past the edge of the forming collar and peeled off.

    I form the nose the same way, slip the nose-forming collar over the protruding petals, fill with shot to 1/16" shy of the end of the collar, heat the petals, and form them down flush over the shot and even with the end of the nose collar, leaving consistent OAL.

    Hope this helps,

    Gear
    Last edited by geargnasher; 03-02-2010 at 03:10 PM.

  6. #26
    Boolit Master dakotashooter2's Avatar
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    FYI for anyone that wants to do this with the .41 mag. You shouldn't have to make them as a 410 wad will fit. In the past I have just cut off the excess wad and loaded them flush with a GC on top but I think I'm going to play around with leaving the excess wad and sealing it somehow.

  7. #27
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    With the 357 I use MAX brass , anneal it so it does`nt spring back & size it in a 222 die , then load it & roll a bit with the shoulder portion of the die .

    It makes fine shotshells for a GP100.

    GP100man

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotashooter2 View Post
    FYI for anyone that wants to do this with the .41 mag. You shouldn't have to make them as a 410 wad will fit. In the past I have just cut off the excess wad and loaded them flush with a GC on top but I think I'm going to play around with leaving the excess wad and sealing it somehow.
    You can also get by with the cushionless .410 wads in the .44 magnum if you aren't using shot smaller than #9. I mentioned this in the OP, that's why I'm only making wads for the .357 and .45 Colt. .410 wads ought to be the bee's knees for .41 Magnum.

    You can cut off a piece of junk shell with a tubing cutter and slip it over the end of the excess and melt it over just like milk jugs, I've done this for the .44 in my various tinkering experiments.

    Gear

  9. #29
    Boolit Master yondering's Avatar
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    The Winchester AA .410 wads are the hot ticket for 45 ACP shotshells made on the RCBS shotshell dies, but those are essentially a bottleneck case of ~.41 caliber inside the "neck". I've used them in 45 Colt too, they do work, but are too small. It sounds like this milk jug trick will be a lot better. Definitely a huge step up from the old method of two gas checks and shot exposed to the rifling.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by GP100man View Post
    With the 357 I use MAX brass , anneal it so it does`nt spring back & size it in a 222 die , then load it & roll a bit with the shoulder portion of the die .

    It makes fine shotshells for a GP100.

    Those HPs will work pretty well on snakes, too! Do you get much leading? How about a pic of the loaded cartridge outside the cylinder?

    I had terrible leading without some kind of petal-type wad, especially in .357 Magnum. So bad I didn't want to shoot any solid boolits afterward without a delead cleaning, which doesn't serve well in a woods gun where it may be a rattlesnake one minute and a feral pig the next.

    I tried industrial coffee filter wads over cork, upside-down gc, plastic, you name it, the paper just disintegrated. Tried pillow ticking, stuffed it down on top of an overpowder gas check and filled that with shot and sealed with beeswax, that worked pretty well but was very short on shot capacity.

    Bullshop Jr. was going to experiment with .30-'06 cases cut to cylinder length and fireformed to headspace on the cylinder throat shoulder in his .45 Colt revolver, then seal with a .44 gas check IIRC. Not sure how that turned out, but similar to your Max case in the .357. I was going to try that because it would truly enable maximum shot payload, but got sidetracked on my shotcup idea and it turned out to work so well I quit experimenting with anything else.

    The next experiment is to determine the size shot that will go three-by-three inside my plastic .45 Colt wads (like 000 buckshot in 12-ga) and pack with BPI original shot buffer. The objective here is to make a close range 'possom/'coon/treerat/ringtail etc. varmint eliminator.....more to come!

    Gear

  11. #31
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    Gear, that is just SLICK!

    Sooner or later, I'm going to HAVE to fire up the bird and fly me and the wife down there and see this setup and operation firsthand.

    I dislike poisonous snakes. Big time. Few things can warm my heart faster than blasting one to Snake Hades.

    Only thing better? Seeing one dropped in the sleeping bag of a sleeping PETA wacko at the Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup one year.


  12. #32
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    Heres a pic of a 357mag on the lft. & a MAX on the rt.
    I use a cardboard wad as big as I can stuff in the case & it has to act as a scraper ,I can get 3 shots off of shotshells before seein any leadin !

    GP100man

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Recluse View Post
    Gear, that is just SLICK!

    Sooner or later, I'm going to HAVE to fire up the bird and fly me and the wife down there and see this setup and operation firsthand.

    I dislike poisonous snakes. Big time. Few things can warm my heart faster than blasting one to Snake Hades.

    Only thing better? Seeing one dropped in the sleeping bag of a sleeping PETA wacko at the Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup one year.

    Invitation is still open, I'll look for you at Lady Bird when the weather warms up a bit. Maybe I can talk you into letting me try out your Judge, the ultimate anti-snake pistol!

    Gear

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by GP100man View Post
    Heres a pic of a 357mag on the lft. & a MAX on the rt.
    I use a cardboard wad as big as I can stuff in the case & it has to act as a scraper ,I can get 3 shots off of shotshells before seein any leadin !
    Thanks for the pic and report. I get zero leading and no significant plastic fouling after 12 with the wads, but they are much more involved to make! I bet yours work just fine for all the actual snake usage they're likely to see. Is that hot glue, or epoxy sealing the end?

    Gear

  15. #35
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    Gear

    I`ve found that a card on top then a small roll & sealing with waterproof carpenters glue will stand up to recoil well .

    My first trys were dismal to say the least , hardly standin up to 1 shot with full 357 mag recoil!!

    But at least they still would`nt lock up the cyl.!!!like the cci factory stuff!!!
    Last edited by GP100man; 03-03-2010 at 07:51 AM.
    GP100man

  16. #36
    Boolit Master yondering's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by geargnasher View Post
    Bullshop Jr. was going to experiment with .30-'06 cases cut to cylinder length and fireformed to headspace on the cylinder throat shoulder in his .45 Colt revolver, then seal with a .44 gas check IIRC. Not sure how that turned out,
    I've done this, but with 444 Marlin brass, as it's the same thing but with a rim. It didn't work well; the bottleneck shape tends to lock up the cylinder after the first shot or two. Your method is much superior.

  17. #37
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    With a 357 magnum dedicated to carrying one round of snake shot it would be neat to bore one hole of the cylinder for a Max case with bird shot. Might improve the patterns. Don't know what would happen if you put a normal case in it.

    Would be easy to do with a single action like a Blackhawk with an extra cylinder.

  18. #38
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    Great post, thanks for posting your tutorial....
    NRA Endowment Life Member

  19. #39
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    I wonder if you could use a GC and make a tube out of the jug to slip into the GC????That would make for a better gas seal and still provide the "winged" sides........

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimb16 View Post
    I wonder if you could use a GC and make a tube out of the jug to slip into the GC????That would make for a better gas seal and still provide the "winged" sides........
    Yes you can, but they work best under a wad made as I have described, as they have a tendency to get turned sideways in the forcing cone area and blow your seal, and the shotcup base works to keep them square. Two other issues: All revolver projectiles try to "pull" out of the cartridge under recoil, and shot wads that aren't fully integrated will separate and spill your shot everywhere, or not enable you to push the wad back in because of shot spilled under the edge of the petals if the wad jumps forward away from the gc, thus binding the works at the worst possible time. Other issue is you need at least two petals, as a single piece will unfurl and create lopsided patterns.

    There are many, many ways to make handgun shotshell loads, and most of them work to one extent or the other, I'm just showing a way I found that outclasses all the ones I've tried. You don't have to do it this way, but you might try it and see.

    Gear
    Last edited by geargnasher; 03-04-2010 at 04:12 PM.

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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