When choosing the bullet sizing diameter for a revolver, should the bullet be matched to the chambers or the barrel? I assume ideally the chambers and the barrel grove dia would be the same but lets say that the chamber is bigger or smaller then the grove. If the chamber is smaller then the grove dia should a gunsmith open the chambers up to match?
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Generally speaking the bullets should be sized to a snug push through fit for the cylinder mouths. I've had my best luck when the cylinder mouths and the bore slug the same, or with the cylinder mouths slightly larger. Probably the easiest way to determine what you're dealing with is to buy a box of soft round lead balls a little larger than the bore in question and push one through the barrel and one through each clyinder throat and measure them. Best done with the cylinder out of the gun, but you can accomplish it with the cylinder in by making a simple wooden jig to support the frame and cylinder so you're not putting any torque on the crane. BD
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BD has some good suggestions there. Especially the comment about the bullet fitting the mouths of the cylinder.
What caliber are you reloading? Have you picked out a bullet type? We'll be glad to help but we might need a few more details.
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Dunno what caliber or revolver you're dealing with, but Ruger single actions in 45 Colt and 44-40 WCF are renown for having chamber throats smaller than their barrel's groove diameter. This does not usually work well with cast bullets, and I have no idea why Ruger persists in this practice--it flies in the face of known and established protocol for revolver accuracy.
Thanks much for the replies. I just purchased a SS 4 5/8" 45 colt Blackhawk. I have a ordered Lyman 452424 mold from midway but it is on back order. It is a plaine flat base Keith type 255 gr SWC. In the mean time I have worked up a few loads with some commercial cast 250 gr .452 round nose flat points. I loaded this bullet with 9.5 gr of Unique ww case and WLP primers. I have some starline case on back order as well. I am getting 6 shot groups at 25 yards that measure just under 2" with this load. VERY little leading.
I also loaded the same bullet case and primer with 9 gr of 231. Accuracy was about the same but this load leaded badly. I used some accurate no 5 too but so far the gun likes unique best.
I have not measured the cylinder throats or grove dia but I have attempted to push a 451 jacketed bullet into the champers mouth. The chambers are too tight to accept it. this gun seems to be no exception to Deputy Al's observations in regard to the tight cylinder throats.
I have not tried any jacketed bullets. I like too shoot often and I cannot afford feed my revolver a steady diet of jacketed bullets. I need advice on how to make it shoot as good as it can with cast bullets. An accurate 250-255 gr cast SWC loaded to about 950-1150 fps for general shooting and another load to sat 1200-1250 fps or so for hunting is all that I need.
Would a bisley grip frame fit my balckhawk? The original grip frame is too short for my hand and shooting it has left my hand sore.
A bisley grip can be fit to your blackhawk, and you'll also need a couple of longer screws to fit it, the parts are available from Brownells. Some folks report a drop in fit, others say you need to file down the grip frame to match the frame. I haven't done it myself, but figure it depends on how critical you are of fit and finish.
You'll be $'s ahead if you sell your blackhawk, and pick up one of the Accusport 5 1/2" ss bisley blackhawks, over re-gripping your blackhawk. The other option is buying a bisley vaquero, and swapping the grip frames, hammer and trigger.
How much are the Accusport 5 1/2" ss bisley blackhawks?
I believe it was a limited run that was sold out, and they were going for $450. There are, or were a few that didn't sell, and might still be available. Barring that, there are some on the used market. It would be nice if Ruger brought this style out as a std item, as it's the combo that folks have been clammering for for years.
Had I know of these and been able to find one I would have bought it. I paid $359 for mine NIB. I am going to call Ruger tomorrow and see if they will sell me a SS bisley grip frame. It shouldn't be a problem to get one as the Vaquero bisley is a regularly cataloged item. I can probably sell the original grip frame to recoup some of the cost.
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Have you noticed that Midway seems to be backorderd on just about everything these days.
I tried to get a a Lyman H&I die in .309 and they don't even carry them anymore. They were back orderd on the RCBS .309 and .310 dies. The scope my wife ordered for me was back ordered so were the bases for a Savage 10FP. They also didn't have any .308 Hornady gas checks.
MidSouth got all my business.
Opening up the throats is an easy thing to do. One of the gun rags had an article recently on how to. The tools were readily available from Brownells. I shoot a LEE Hollowbase bullet in my .45 and cast it soft 30 or 40 to 1. It doesn't lead and gives great accuracy even with 10 grains of Unique..
Deuty Al I remember you from the other board. If I'm not mistaken I think you sent me an article on the .32 H&R. welcome.
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Marty, I have the SS 4 5/8" BlackHawk in 45colt also. Mine has a Bisley cylinder now after a hot loading mishap 405's @ 1300+ I put the Houge Mono-Grip on mine and really like it. It would be alot cheaper than getting a new gripframe. I've shot a bunch of topend loads out of mine with 300's, 345's and It isn't too bad with the Houge grip.
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Marty, One good thing about the .45 long colt is that if the cylinder mouths are the usual undersize Ruger product, a simple cylinder throat truing reamer is available for it from Brownells for about $35 if memory serves. I've always wondered why the Ruger single action .45s are generally throated so small, while their redhawks in .44 mag are commonly throated so big, (.432)? You'd think they'd have figured this out by now. BD
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Thanks for the welcome--a lot of decent folks hereabouts!
Marty et al--
Why Ruger does some of the things it does is a complete mystery. In fairness, a LOT of currently made firearms need to be "finished" after purchase, though. Looking at the differences between my wife's Colt Officer's Model Special and currently produced wheelguns......well, never mind. Night and day, that's all there is to it.
Thanks for all of the useful information guys! I ordered a Houge Mono-Grip from Midsouth. Thanks for that suggestion Lar45. I am a bit tight on cash right now and I would rather spend my money on power, primers & lead.
I am going to do some more load development once my mold gets off of back order. I don't know what is going on with Midway. I have been a loyal customer for years and up until this year I never had a problme with them. Now every single time I place an order they are out of stock on some of the items.
I'd like to get the 6 shot 25 yard group size down to 1.5" or better. If I cannot accomplish this I will look into having the cylinder diameter opened up a bit.
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