Gas check question

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Jack D
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Gas check question

Postby Jack D » Wed Jun 06, 2012 6:43 pm

Will gas checks fit on any cast bullet or does it have to be a bullet designed for gas checks?

Looking at the Hornady gas check compatibility chart, it lists all Lee bullet molds with no mention of those designed for gas checks. Yet Lee has a mold that says it is designed for gas checks. What I want is a wadcutter (or SWC) that I can put a gas check on when desired. I also want one that is designed for Lee tumble lube. They have both (WC & SWC) made for tumble lube, but not for gas check and they have a SWC made for gas check, but not tumble lube.

I'm guessing I can put a gas check on a bullet that is not designed for a gas check. That the lead will squish down enough in the sizer die for the gas check to work. Am I right?
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blue68f100
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Postby blue68f100 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 9:11 am

I honestly don't know. I though that you had to have a bullet designed for it. So it would clamp onto the base. With out the reduced area you may have a hard time swedging the bullet down to put them on. May check over on http://www.castbullet.com/reload/reload.htm and see what they say.
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Jack D
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Postby Jack D » Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:07 pm

This thread is old and growing a long beard. I've been researching the subject and it seems unanimous. Gas checks cannot be installed on bullets not designed for them. But this makes no sense to me, so I ordered some Hornady gas checks and, one way or another, I'm going to fit them to my Lee tumble lube bullets. I have a reason for wanting to do this...as opposed to buying a mold just for gas checked bullets.

The tumble lube Lee bullets has many grooves and any one of them can be used for crimping the bullet into the case. In my SS rifle, seating the bullet out as far as possible makes more room for powder and I've found that I can get near .357 Maxi velocities (in heavier bullets) in the magnum case by seating the bullet very shallow using jacketed bullets. Now I'd like to experiment using cast lead and those velocities would likely mean gas checks. Not sure what the end result will be, but the fun is in the experimenting.
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Postby stork » Wed Feb 13, 2013 10:03 am

Jack,
Sorry to have missed this thread.

I believe that a gas check design is required in order to use a gas check. The bullet base must have room to allow for the gas check to be crimped into the bullet base.

What type of velocities are you trying to achieve? If the alloy mix is on the hard side (BN 14-18) you should be able to push those bullets up to 1400 fps without leading, providing your bullets are sized correctly for your bore diameter and proper lube is used.

Al
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Postby Jack D » Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:45 am

That seems to be the general consensus. I'm looking for something in the 1900 FPS velocity from the H&R Handi. I can achieve this with the XTP's and FTX's with 20 gr. 4227 by seating the bullet ~.20". It would be nice to be able to do that with the Lee Tumble lube design.

My Hornady gas checks haven't arrived yet. Tracking says they should have been here Monday the 11th or sooner. Not here the 11th or the 12th. Maybe today. I believe where there's will, there's a way. And I plan to find it.

http://leeprecision.com/mold-dc-tl358-158swc.html
http://www.metalsmithpro.com/357MagnumRifle.htm
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Postby bgreenea3 » Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:27 pm

I've never put gas checks on bullets and have only loaded a few hundred with them, you can probably crimp them on to any beveled base lead bullet I would think. Are you planning on just pressing the gaschecks onto the base or do you have another plan for it?

The gas check bullets I've loaded and shot were 180gr wide flat points by bear tooth bullets in my .357 mag pistol over a heaping helping of blue dot. Lots of roll in recoil but otherwise not so bad to shoot.
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Jack D
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Postby Jack D » Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:34 pm

I have the Lee .358 sizing die and will crimp them on. Not sure just how, yet. Still no GC's today. Seems the USPS can find a useable address. Maybe they were addressed wrong or the label got damaged in transit. At any rate, they are stuck in Portland, OR. I contacted the seller to ask for a new shipment. Drat!
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Benjamin-Sheridan, 5mm (.20), scoped.

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Yes! You can!

Postby Jack D » Thu Feb 14, 2013 5:52 pm

I finally got the gas checks this morning and promptly went to work. I tried rounding the base of the bullet and it worked, but not very well. Too easy to go too far. Next I tried beveling the base of the bullet. Again, it worked with similar results as rounding. Then I cut the base down parallel to the bullet axis until the GC fit snug, but not too tight. This is just like the bullets that are cast for GC's. It works beautifully.

I did this by chucking the bullet in my 3/8" drill motor so that just the base that I wanted to downsize was protruding and using a smooth edge file (so as to not damage the chuck jaws) I spun the bullet while pushing the file acroos the base in the opposite direction of the spinning bullet. Like a miniature lathe. This tend to plug the file, so I kept my file card close.

What this gives me is a bullet with lots of "cannelures" to crimp into and I can seat the bullet shallow for more powder. As you can see in the photo is that this gives me ~3/16" more powder room and a strong crimp to secure the shallow seated bullet and a gas check to get the velocities up.
At least that's the theory.


Image
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Benjamin-Sheridan, 5mm (.20), scoped.

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Postby Jack D » Sat Jun 22, 2013 1:10 pm

I loaded up a bunch of these Lee cast bullets with gas checks to fire in my 16.5" barrel H&R Handi. The load was Mag case, SRP, 20 gr. IMR4227, and 158 gr. cast bullet w/GC.

I fired about 50 rounds and found them to be accurate (80-100 yards) and no leading is seen in the barrel. The lead is salvaged from my indoor trap and some old fishing weights. Hardness is unknown and, in fact, may vary from bullet to bullet. It would seem, at least so far, that the GC makes lead hardness much less critical.
Jack

Ruger SP101, 3", .357, CT laser

Ruger SR22P, CT laser

Ruger LCR22, CT laser

Ruger 10/22 Deluxe, scoped

H&R Handi, .357 customized, laser, red dot, scope, weapon light, bipod

Benjamin-Sheridan, 5mm (.20), scoped.


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