Reloading ammunition: a good hobby when it’s 106 degrees outside

Definition of a conundrum: having a great rifle and sufficient ammunition (courtesy of Federal and Hornady) but not being willing to roast or boil at an outdoor range. Indoor ranges are an option, but the extra noise isn’t to my taste, nor is the 25 yard limitation. Besides, 160 rounds of three types is just enough for familiarization — it’s one range trip’s worth of ammunition.

Pretty good ammunition, too — would be a pity to just kill paper with it. Florida feral hogs come to mind as a viable alternative to bulleyes. I also keep thinking that .44 Magnum is primarily a revolver cartridge, so it won’t take full advantage of the longer barrel. Between that consideration and the weather, hand-loading seems like a good idea. Fortunately, I have a local friend with a reloading press and 44Mag dies, and I have friends at Brownells…

Hornady XTP — should be just right for the smaller feral piggies.

Sierra JHC — same idea. I got two different kinds of bullets to see which gives better groups.

A thousand large rifle CCI primers and as many pieces of Starline brass. Brass can be re-used. Eight pounds of slower H110 pistol powder to maximize the benefit of the long carbine barrel, enough for over 2000 rounds at full charge.

Looks like I remembered everything. My friend’s cool, quiet basement reloading room beckons.

Almost everything…how the heck will I launch two thousand bullets with only one thousand primers?

Once these loads are ready, I’d like to see how they work at extended ranges (100-150 yards). A scope might be nice for testing accuracy that far out, but to all its proper time. A lever action carbine isn’t your typical long-range gun, but I am amused by trying to push guns into roles not typically associated with them. Fortunately, I have some qualified help for that process.

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7 Responses to Reloading ammunition: a good hobby when it’s 106 degrees outside

  1. maddmedic says:

    All the heat!! Dang Al Gore!!
    You are a little light on components I would say!!

  2. Ed Campbell says:

    This post is perfect. I have purchased both a Big Boy in .44 and .22 Henry rifles recently and my almost 60 year old eyes were struggling with the rear buckhorn sites. I was leaning toward a rear peep sight ( but your idea may be a much better option.

  3. Well, they’d double- and triple-shot muzzle-loading canons back in the Napoleonic war era of naval warfare, thus disposing of two “bullets” in one shot :-).

    (Highly dis-recommended today as you know, but I can’t bring myself to leave it sitting there over my name even as a joke.)

  4. Actually no. My reloading press is in the Garage, so I pretty much do not handload from May to September.

  5. Skip says:

    It is so hot in the garage that I need a firetruck to stand watch.
    If I had a fire in there, it would show up on a sat flyby.

  6. Timmeehh says:

    As you can see from this link, you can expect to pick up 200 fps with the carbine over the revolver.

  7. Firehand says:

    The general rule I’ve seen is that max effectiveness of pistol cartridges in a rifle comes at 16″ of barrel; less than that you don’t get max velocity, longer than that velocity starts dropping due to friction overcoming drive from propellant gasses.

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