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Hornady LSWC, watch for leading


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#1 Bisley

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Posted 02 April 2012 - 11:26 PM

Usually when loading for all my pistols I use a very hard lead alloy bullet from Hardcast or Lasercast, but had to settle for the Hornady 240gr LSWC last week in the .44 as the others were unavailable. My first clue that these were pretty soft bullets was at the lack of a canalure or crimping groove. This meant either that that they didn't need it because they weren't designed to be loaded hard enough to walk out or that the lead was soft enough for the die to crimp the case into it, or both. Well, long story short, while they shot just fine, after 50 rounds of specials (5.5gr Bullseye) and about 18 Mags (21gr 2400), this is roughly 20% of the total; lead pulled out of the barrel. I know it is from these loads since I had cleaned it to a mirror finish with a foul-out electric removal setup after the last time out.Posted ImageIt won't hurt anything, just make for one really leaded up barrel quickly. I can imagine they would be great on rabbits or coyotes with the soft expanding lead, but it seems they will be heck on the elbow grease to clean. Especially when you consider how I put a couple hundred rounds out of the .357's and they still look just like they did after the same lead cleaning method mentioned earlier, and I couldn't really see any lead while cleanng them.I love Hornady bullets and am not trying to steer anyone clear of them. I just remember that we had a few guys on here that have just taken up reloading and wanted to let them (and everyone else) know how soft these bullets were and to stick with harder cast lead to avoid leading like this. And now I know better also. No harm, no foul, but just thought I would share/educate. Happy shooting.

#2 ehd

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 04:23 AM

I shoot copper jacketed stuff in my glock but have heard with the polygnal shaped rifling you cannot shoot cast bullets because of pressure issues with that type of rifling?

#3 Shoot-it

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 08:12 AM

Have you shot bear creek bullets before they are cast lead bullets.The company is in Waterford Ca I was thinking on trying out some for the 44 mag just not sure how hard they are.I am going to give the guy another call and ask him but he is hard to get a hold off.You spoke the truth bisley if they are leading real bad then they just are.

#4 Frank

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:43 AM

Good post, Bob, and especially for any beginners as you say. Many years ago, when I owned more handguns than I do today, & was handloading for them I ran into the same problem.I gummed up more than one handgun more than once with soft lead bullets, wadcutters etc in both semi auto's & revovlers. One revolver was leaded up so bad you could not cock the hammer back or turn the cylinder by hand. (of course my addiction to speed had nothing to do with it) <_<Anyway, after doing that several times ( :harhar1[1]:), I finally had enough & decided that all bullets, handload or factory, will have copper jackets on them. No more pure lead bullets for me, even with the so called hard lead bullet stuff out there. I just won't use them any more, again, especially considering the grief I went through, the # of times & how bad they were gummed up. I HATED it!So, for me... Problem Solved... by using copper jacketed bullets... Exclusively! :huh:

#5 Bisley

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 12:15 PM

One revolver was leaded up so bad you could not cock the hammer back or turn the cylinder by hand. (of course my addiction to speed had nothing to do with it) <_<Anyway, after doing that several times ( :harhar1[1]:),

I don't feel so bad now. My grandfather had an old Model 28 S&W that looked like a shotgun (smoothbore) and we just thought the barrel had been shot out. That was ntil Outers first came out with that Foul-Out years ago! We probably removed 1/2 pound of lead since he casted pure wheel weights (too soft) almost exclusively. This gun is the same reason I don't buy into the whole Glock rumor about high pressures and lead bullets. The whole idea behind that theory is that that particuliar style of rifling is supposed to foul out a barrel faster and the lead deposited in the barrel will raise pressures enough to cause damage. Well, if that old S&W with that much fouling would still shoot Magnums with copper jackets (which create higher pressures to begin with) without so much as a sticky case (ejcting) or a flattened primer, I find it amazingly hard to believe lead bullets with a fouled barrel in a Glock will. Lead bullets are 99.9% associated with reloading, and every manufacturer to date recommends not using reloads in their firearms. A CYA thing if you will. My best friend/hunting partner carries a Glock 27 on his CCW and had the same question. But after I took it off of him and put a coule hundred rounds through it one afternoon and dared him to pull lead out of the barrel, he now shoots lots of lea. And it is S C A R Y accurate out of his tiny barreled gun. This is also why I use hard cast lead. I have shot the Lasercast through 8' wood poles and recovered the bullets in the sand behind it, and except for the rifling marks, I could reload them again and shoot them. Next best thing to shooting copper.I have not tried the Bear Creek bullets, but they seem to be on the right track after reading up on their site. Most all manufacturers are using harder alloys these days (well, at least one isn't :huh: ), so it shouldn't be a problem. And even if the are cast softer, the moly coating should act as a kind of gas check and keep the lead from burning. I wouldn't foresee any problems with them.

#6 Frank

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 01:23 PM

That was ntil Outers first came out with that Foul-Out years ago! We probably removed 1/2 pound of lead since he casted pure wheel weights (too soft) almost exclusively.

Uh, well... Murcury worked back then... only from what I've heard though :harhar1[1]: :smiley-outta-here:Good right up, Bob... including the incredible penetration by the Lasercast bullets. Yikes! Oh, I had a 1911 that was pretty accurate with lead semi wadcutter handloads. I loved that combo & can't recall any problems with that. But then again, I've slept since then, so?? LOLAnyway, interesting stuff

#7 Bisley

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 05:24 PM

Uh, well... Murcury worked back then... only from what I've heard though :harhar1[1]: :huh:

:rofl2: Always wondered since I had never known anyone who used it. Every now and then I use the Foul-out system, but mostly I just plug the barrel and let it soak in a 50/50 hydrogen peroxide and vinegar mix and push very tight patches theough it. Seems to work (at least for me) and the barrel is mirror bright afterward, so who am I to argue :lol: .I wish I had kept some of those old hard cast bullets that went through that pole. I used to save a lot of stuff like that, never did know why, but threw a lot of it away when I got fed up with reloading in what seemed like a scrap bin a few years back :rolleyes: . They definitely showed me that they were not wheel weight soft, or, like you mentioned earlier, full wadcutter soft. I can not picture you shooting a wadcutter at 0mph Frank. That must have been like Chinese water torture for you :roflmao3[1]:

#8 Frank

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 06:21 PM

I can not picture you shooting a wadcutter at 0mph Frank. That must have been like Chinese water torture for you :huh:

:harhar1[1]: OMG, ain't that the truth... that IS why I got rid of that 45 for long barreled magnum revolvers. OH, & probably after I nearly stepped on the toes of a LARGE black bear while on a backcountry trout fishing trip while carrying that water gun. :roflmao3[1]:

#9 dangerranger

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Posted 05 April 2012 - 08:51 PM

I load almost exclusively lead bullits, hard and soft. But I shoot the at slower speeds that are lead friendly. The only leading problem that Ive had was found to be caused by a loose bore to bullit fit. Once I started loading correctly sized bullits, no more leading. For heavy hunting loads I use the heaviest bullit available at a modest speed and havent yet had to clean up a fouled bore. Even in 44mag a heavier slower bullit will hit with nearly the same authourity. DR

#10 Bisley

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 09:28 PM

But I shoot the at slower speeds that are lead friendly. The only leading problem that Ive had was found to be caused by a loose bore to bullit fit. Once I started loading correctly sized bullits, no more leading.

While I do understand what you are saying, these Hornady bullets are the same size as he hard cast I usually use (with no leading problems). And this last batch was less than 75 rounds fired with 5.5gr of Bullseye moving at the speed of any line at a government agency (almost backwards). Way too much leading for that few rounds, especially at those speeds, That's why I just thought I would let everyone else in on what I learned the hard way (or actually, the soft way) :rofl2: .

#11 Frank

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 07:01 AM

But I shoot the at slower speeds

OMG... I'm starting to get a rash :rofl2: (j.k.(almost) lol

#12 Bisley

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 11:36 AM

:) Frank's Hell would consist of him only being able to own one gun, a snub nosed .38 with an endless supply of wadcutters :D

#13 Frank

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 01:20 PM

Now that would be just plain mean :)

#14 Bisley

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 03:04 PM

:D I was gonna say a Winchester rimfire with a sawed down barrel and sub-sonic .22's, but I wanted to be nice on Easter weekend :)

#15 dangerranger

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 03:08 PM

While I do understand what you are saying, these Hornady bullets are the same size as he hard cast I usually use (with no leading problems). And this last batch was less than 75 rounds fired with 5.5gr of Bullseye moving at the speed of any line at a government agency (almost backwards). Way too much leading for that few rounds, especially at those speeds, That's why I just thought I would let everyone else in on what I learned the hard way (or actually, the soft way) :) .

Thats certianly slow enough! Have you measured them to see if that batch was undersized? I know if I pour bullits too cold they come out undersized. DR

#16 Bisley

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 03:38 PM

Thats certianly slow enough! Have you measured them to see if that batch was undersized? I know if I pour bullits too cold they come out undersized. DR

They are cold swaged, but yes I did check, and they are at .430. But I do hear ya on what you were thinking. I did spend some time last night doing some much more detailed research after talking with a fellow shooter. It turns out these were originally made with CAS in mind, which would explain the lack of need for a canalure or crimp groove with those intended speeds. And while I don't have a hardness scale, I can tell you that with pliers or a vise they crush as soft as my "know-to-be-soft" wadcutters, and and WAY softer then a few hard cast I had laying around. Like I said, they do shoot just fine, but if you have (a lack of) gun cleaning motivation like I do then I would definitely stick to a harder bullet. I think I'll save the other 125 rounds for the next time my buddy shows up with the .44 but only has "a couple of rounds, unless you want to let me shoot some of your reloads?" :) :D

#17 dangerranger

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 07:02 PM

I think I'll save the other 125 rounds for the next time my buddy shows up with the .44 but only has "a couple of rounds, unless you want to let me shoot some of your reloads?" :smiley-innocent-halo-yellow: :751:

Now thats just Evil!




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