Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

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Rube Burrows
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Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

I am trying to come up with some "pet" loads for my 38-55, finally. I am having a hard time finding good load data for cast bullets. I finally settled on an over all length that my rifle seems to cycle with some dummy loads. Now I want to add some powder and primer and find what will accurately shoot in my rifle.


I am wondering if there is a formula for when a load manual has, lets say, a 255g jacketed bullet and I have a 255g cast bullet? Seems most I am seeing is for jacketed bullets.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Bronco »

One valuable resource Might find a cheaper price, I was just to lazy to keep searching! I found it informative and has lots of cast loads!

https://www.amazon.com/Lyman-Cast-Bulle ... B07PSNM3KV

I am sure others will chime in with other sources!
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Jay Bird »

Any load you see for a jacketed bullet will work with a cast bullet of the same weight.....there's less pressure with cast.

The problem come in when using slow powders for cast that are recommended for jacketed......hangfires and wide extreme spreads sometimes results especially in cold weather and using a straight case like the 38-55. You need to build up pressures with any powder and that's why you will see medium or faster powders in the cast bullet section.

RL-7, Unique, 4227, 2400, 4198 and 5744 (my favorite) are just a few that work great in the 38-55....an excellent play load of around 1000 fps is 9 grains of Unique, loose in the case with about any cast bullet and is safe for any gun ever made for the 38-55.

My competition and long range load is 21 grains of 5744 and a 270 gas check bullet.....going out of my head...around 1500.

Just type in "cast bullet loads for the 38-55" and there will be a million recommendations.....if you are unsure just ask...there's more than a few guys here who play with that cartridge.

Download a powder burn chart and try to stay under any powder with the burn rate of about 3031.
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Rube Burrows
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

Awesome. I’ll get the Lyman cast book. Didn’t realize they had that one out there.

I think I have some 4198 and also know I have a vintage can of Unique.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by hondo1892 »

You could check out cast boolit forum also. Tons of cast boolit loads on that site.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Fisher-Price »

Lyman’s cast bullet handbook lists IMR 4198 as the accuracy load with a 245 grain bullet, I have had better luck with H4198.

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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by 6pt-sika »

As mentioned already jacketed bullet data will work for cast . HOWEVER I tend to use only gas check cast in rifles and that’s a big plus with full octane loads . If you wanna load cast bullets that are plain base no gas check I’d drop back on the charge or go to a different powder that’s make less velocity . If your load doesn’t exceed 1700 FPS plain base should be fine if you go past that velocity you start running into leading issues from getting the lead base to hot etc , hence one of the big reasons I prefer gas check bullets . Just my always biased opinion .
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

6pt-sika wrote:
Tue May 19, 2020 10:05 pm
As mentioned already jacketed bullet data will work for cast . HOWEVER I tend to use only gas check cast in rifles and that’s a big plus with full octane loads . If you wanna load cast bullets that are plain base no gas check I’d drop back on the charge or go to a different powder that’s make less velocity . If your load doesn’t exceed 1700 FPS plain base should be fine if you go past that velocity you start running into leading issues from getting the lead base to hot etc , hence one of the big reasons I prefer gas check bullets . Just my always biased opinion .

Thanks. I picked up the Lyman Cast book.
I have a good bit of 255g bullets and that seems to be what most sell but there is very little info on the 255g stuff.

I want to start casting but I am not at that point just yet.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by fordwannabe »

In my 38-55 powder selection was not nearly as important as cast bullet diameter for accuracy. What does your bore measure?
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

fordwannabe wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 10:43 am
In my 38-55 powder selection was not nearly as important as cast bullet diameter for accuracy. What does your bore measure?

.375 is what my bore slugs out at.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by 6pt-sika »

FWIW , the first deer I ever killed without a scope as well as using a cast bullet was with a Marlin 336CB in 38-55 using a bullet I cast from straight WW’s in the RCBS 37-250 GC mold . That was about twenty years ago . :wink:
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by 6pt-sika »

Rube Burrows wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 10:26 am
6pt-sika wrote:
Tue May 19, 2020 10:05 pm
As mentioned already jacketed bullet data will work for cast . HOWEVER I tend to use only gas check cast in rifles and that’s a big plus with full octane loads . If you wanna load cast bullets that are plain base no gas check I’d drop back on the charge or go to a different powder that’s make less velocity . If your load doesn’t exceed 1700 FPS plain base should be fine if you go past that velocity you start running into leading issues from getting the lead base to hot etc , hence one of the big reasons I prefer gas check bullets . Just my always biased opinion .

Thanks. I picked up the Lyman Cast book.
I have a good bit of 255g bullets and that seems to be what most sell but there is very little info on the 255g stuff.

I want to start casting but I am not at that point just yet.
In my own cast bullet past I was initially kinda narrow minded . I didn’t wanna load for Marlin’s with Micro Groove rifling and I used powders that were well more traditional cast bullet powders SR4759 , SR4756 , AA XMP5744 , Unique and they worked in Ballard rifled Guns very well with moderate velocities . Later I got hung up on older Marlins chambered in 444 and as bullet weight grew I realized I needed more velocity to stabilize the bullets in the Micro Groove barrels . The Micro Grooves in actuality aren’t the cause but rather the slow twist of 1:36 , so to stabilize they needed to be pushed fast and at that point I moved on to H322 , AA XMR2015 , RL7 and a few others . So like anything else there are learning curves and transitions !
Parkers , 444 Marlin , 6.5mm's , Sika Deer and my family in the Philippines !

Go Manny Pacquiao !

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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

6pt-sika wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 3:48 pm
Rube Burrows wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 10:26 am
6pt-sika wrote:
Tue May 19, 2020 10:05 pm
As mentioned already jacketed bullet data will work for cast . HOWEVER I tend to use only gas check cast in rifles and that’s a big plus with full octane loads . If you wanna load cast bullets that are plain base no gas check I’d drop back on the charge or go to a different powder that’s make less velocity . If your load doesn’t exceed 1700 FPS plain base should be fine if you go past that velocity you start running into leading issues from getting the lead base to hot etc , hence one of the big reasons I prefer gas check bullets . Just my always biased opinion .

Thanks. I picked up the Lyman Cast book.
I have a good bit of 255g bullets and that seems to be what most sell but there is very little info on the 255g stuff.

I want to start casting but I am not at that point just yet.
In my own cast bullet past I was initially kinda narrow minded . I didn’t wanna load for Marlin’s with Micro Groove rifling and I used powders that were well more traditional cast bullet powders SR4759 , SR4756 , AA XMP5744 , Unique and they worked in Ballard rifled Guns very well with moderate velocities . Later I got hung up on older Marlins chambered in 444 and as bullet weight grew I realized I needed more velocity to stabilize the bullets in the Micro Groove barrels . The Micro Grooves in actuality aren’t the cause but rather the slow twist of 1:36 , so to stabilize they needed to be pushed fast and at that point I moved on to H322 , AA XMR2015 , RL7 and a few others . So like anything else there are learning curves and transitions !
Up to this point I have mostly loaded for .45 Colt, .38spl, .357mag and a couple more pistol calibers using mostly Trail Boss at cowboy speeds.

I have dabbled off and on with this 38-55 for years never really committing to it. I'm trying to give it a serious go and see if this gun and me can finally get along.

I believe my barrel is 1:14 twist, 26" long and slugs .375. (Came from Numrich) Its all mated to a Winchester 94 donor action that started its life as a 1979 carbine.

I want to be able to hunt with this rifle and also just shoot for fun.

The information for loading for the 38-55 is so all over the place. From the powders, bullet, bullet weights, bore diameters etc......nothing seems to be uniform.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

Rifle.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by hondo1892 »

Nice rifle Rube.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

hondo1892 wrote:
Wed May 20, 2020 6:45 pm
Nice rifle Rube.
Thanks.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by DocRock »

IMR 4227, 4198, and 3031 are mighty useful to have on hand for cast loads.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

Just wanted to post an update.

I loaded up 10- 255g bullets that were .379 in diameter. I used 10 grains of Unique in new Winchester Brass with a Winchester large rifle primer. They were loaded to 2.495 OAL.

The rifle shot way better than I was expecting. I was 100 yards away and was using a Marbles Tang sight with a Lyman front globe sight.
I had one shot hit above and off the target and then I adjusted my rear sight down and made a group. I shot the first three and they were touching. I then pulled the 4th shot to the right. I knew it as soon as I fired it.

I was having trouble with a pulled muscle in my back that happened earlier in the day and left it at that for that particular load.


I then tried the other batch that I loaded which were a 255g bullet that was .377 in diameter. Using the same new Winchester brass and Winchester large rifle primer and 10g of Unique powder.

This group did not shoot as good but still very decent. I will try another day as my back was hurting bad at this point and I was def. rushing a little bit.

Here are some photos.
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Last edited by Rube Burrows on Sun May 24, 2020 3:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

Photos from the first batch.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

Photos from the second batch
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by 6pt-sika »

Looks good to me :!:
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

6pt-sika wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 2:52 pm
Looks good to me :!:

I was more than impressed with the .379 bullets. They grouped better than I was expecting.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by 6pt-sika »

Rube Burrows wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 3:31 pm
6pt-sika wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 2:52 pm
Looks good to me :!:

I was more than impressed with the .379 bullets. They grouped better than I was expecting.
At one point I had a pair of 38-55’s a 375 WIN and a 38-56 I sized at .379” for all four .
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Sixgun »

Yes Rube...you have to experiment.....nothing is written in stone with cast bullets.Ive been telling people for years to use the fattest bullet the chamber will accept..........in calibers 30 and on up....for some reason unknown to me the smaller diameter calibers prefer groove diameter or a thou over.

You also need to take into account that no one is up to par on certain days and sunshine can wreak havoc on the front sight and target. I'm pretty much happy with consistent2" groups at 100....a little less than that with a scope

Just a bit of worldly advice...I've been casting and shooting cast since 1974.....and I still don't know it all.

A gas check is almost always a plus and is a smart move when trying to eliminate the variables to achieve accuracy.---6
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

Sixgun wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 3:46 pm
Yes Rube...you have to experiment.....nothing is written in stone with cast bullets.Ive been telling people for years to use the fattest bullet the chamber will accept..........in calibers 30 and on up....for some reason unknown to me the smaller diameter calibers prefer groove diameter or a thou over.

You also need to take into account that no one is up to par on certain days and sunshine can wreak havoc on the front sight and target. I'm pretty much happy with consistent2" groups at 100....a little less than that with a scope

Just a bit of worldly advice...I've been casting and shooting cast since 1974.....and I still don't know it all.

A gas check is almost always a plus and is a smart move when trying to eliminate the variables to achieve accuracy.---6
Good points. I need to start casting and I am looking into some molds for this rifle and also my .45 Colts. I enjoy reloading but haven't ever cast my own bullets yet.
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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by ollogger »

Nice rifle Rube Was just out shooting my 38-55, its a Marlin CB. Had put a scope on it a few years ago just to see how well it shot
with a 235gc ranch dog - 250 Lee pb & a 285 gr. gc Lyman , they all shot about 2 in at 100 yd with 5 shots, powder was mixture with RL 7 - H 4198 & H 322 Their was a slight edge With RL 7 & the 235 ranch dog of about a 1/2 in.
that kind of shooting when I took the scope off went to about a 6 in. group :oops: what ta heck, most of the time i just blast at steel
so it doesn't matter, at 65 every time you go out its just a great day to enjoy the fruits of your labor
all bullets were sized at 379


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Re: Jacketed Vs Cast Reloading

Post by Rube Burrows »

ollogger wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 8:56 pm
Nice rifle Rube Was just out shooting my 38-55, its a Marlin CB. Had put a scope on it a few years ago just to see how well it shot
with a 235gc ranch dog - 250 Lee pb & a 285 gr. gc Lyman , they all shot about 2 in at 100 yd with 5 shots, powder was mixture with RL 7 - H 4198 & H 322 Their was a slight edge With RL 7 & the 235 ranch dog of about a 1/2 in.
that kind of shooting when I took the scope off went to about a 6 in. group :oops: what ta heck, most of the time i just blast at steel
so it doesn't matter, at 65 every time you go out its just a great day to enjoy the fruits of your labor
all bullets were sized at 379


ollogger

I agree about any day you get out its a great day. I used to buy all the fancy scopes and try to make all my guns make one ragged hole and I found it was sucking the fun out of shooting. Best thing I ever did was get steel plates. The ring at the end is way more gratifying than trying to get bullet holes to touch and getting upset when the gun or me can't get it done.

I was pleased with the way this rifle shot because the tang sight and globe sight at 100 yards were doing great and the target pretty much filled the whole inside of the sight. I would just put the round target into the sight and fire and was pleased to see it shooting so straight. I was shooting off of a shooting bag that was in the bed of a Kubota side by side. The rifle is pretty heavy with a 26" octagonal barrel that has no taper to it. I know that will open up once I shoot it standing up with no rest but at least I know what the rifle is capable of. Now I will ring some steel with it.
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