Tag Archives: TTFA

What’s The Worst That Could Happen?

I have six loaded rounds of 357 Magnum using a near-maximum charge of H110 under  158 grain lead flat nose bullets. Please don’t blow my revolver to bits.

I have six rounds of 6.5x52mm using an absolute minimum load of H335 under some very long and tight 160 grain bullets. Please don’t squib.





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Not The Brightest Bulb

I just barely realized that I have dies to load 7.62x39mm AND a VZ 58.

In my defense, I bought the dies to work up a hunting load for my father’s Mini-30 and never really think about them. I may have to see what a 32 ACP bullet will do out of an x39 case…

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The Three-Fingered Alchemist, Episode 8

Take a moderate charge of Unique under a .356″ 95 grain Missouri Bullet Company* LRN pill and you have a load that runs great in a Beretta ’34, is a softy in an LCP, and a bit mellower than factory in a Beretta 84BB. So far this load seems to hit to the sights in all three pistols, as well.

I think I have a winner.


* There will be a post coming up about this company this weekend.

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The Three-Fingered Alchemist, Episode 7

I think I have found the No. 5 Mk I’s favorite load:

A little math, assuming a conservative 5 load life for my brass:

  • Brass – $23 per 50
  • Powder – $27 per pound
  • Bullets – $26 per 100
  • Primers – $30 per 1,000
  • Total Cost Per Round – 53.1 cents. About $26.525 per 50 rounds.
  • Representative Cost Of Cheap 174 Grain Factory Ammo – $13.95/20 before shipping. I lose out until I factor in shipping charges. 500 rounds of the cheapest 174 gr. ammo would cost $363.54 shipped, I can reload 500 (with match-grade bullets, no less) for $265.25.
  • Savings – About 20 cents per round, $9.83/50, $98.29/500.
  • The savings don’t seem like much until the facts that my brass is custom fire-formed to my chamber (due to my neck-sizing only), my bullets are match-grade, my powder charge is tuned to my rifle, and my powder charge is more consistent are factored in.
  • Custom match-grade ammo for less than the price of the cheapest average ammo? Works for me.

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The Three-Fingered Alchemist, Episode 6.

I completely forgot to finish my expense details of my first 38 S&W Special loads:

  • Brass – Free (It was all gathered before I started reloading, future factory ammo will have a cost added.)
  • Powder – $27 for one pound. (> 1700 loads at 4 gr. per load)
  • Bullets – $83 for 1,000 shipped.
  • Primers – $35/1000.
  • Total cost per round – About 13.3 cents per round. Roughly $6.671 dollars per 50 rounds. A bit less than $66.72 per 500.
  • Representative price of cheap 38 that also fires a 158 grain lead slug – $137.50/500 before shipping. $13.75 a box of 50. 27.5 cents per round, again, before shipping.
  • Savings – 14.2 cents per round, $7.079 per 50,  $70.84/500.
  • I can load 1,000 rounds of 38 Special (using a 4.0 grain charge) for less than I can order 500 rounds of cheap ammo before shipping is even calculated… And I have found a cheaper source of cast lead bullets of the same weight and quality as the ones I have now.
  • Groovy

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So, I Made Six Things. TTFA Episode 5.

And I hope they don’t blow my topstrap into my face:

  • 6 Rounds
  • Case: Top Brass
  • Primer: CCI #500 Small Pistol
  • Powder: No details for you. They are filled with Unique in the minimum charge end of things.
  • Bullet: 158 grain bevel-based LFN seated to the top of their little cannelure.

I’ll pop them off tomorrow.

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Capitalism: It Ain’t Always Roses And Kitten Hugs. TTFA, Episode 4

I ordered 1,000 sized and lubricated 158 grain bevel-based lead flat nose bullets sized to .358 from The Bullet Works. The price was good, shipping and handling was a normal rate, and the site format was intuitive.

My order was placed on the 22nd, shipped via priority mail that same day, and arrived at my front step on the 24th. I promptly opened the package and was greeted with this sight:

I assume that the crumpled large inner box was meant as a spacer for the smaller box of bullets. Not sure though.

Once I noticed the damage, I took pictures and e-mailed The Bullet Works with a description of everything, my morning and evening phone numbers, and told them that I would refrain from posting this for 24 hours to give them a chance to respond to me. It is now the morning of the 28th and I have received no reply.

When I pay for something, I like it to be packaged well enough to arrive at my door undamaged. The bullets seem to have been truly well hard cast as none that I have examined so far seem to have been damaged in the ballistic cardboard snow-globe.

Crumpled large inner box.

Did I talk to the Postal Service? No. The outer box was undamaged with no signs of abnormal handling:

As of right now, I will have no more financial relation with The Bullet Works because of the poor packaging and non-existent customer service. If I am contacted within a few more days with a meaningful response and the bullets perform well, I may consider ordering again in the future.

The original box is toast, how did you re-package the bullets, Butch?

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