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Need reloading information for .38 Special blanks

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  • Need reloading information for .38 Special blanks

    I have a friend who has need for .38 Special blanks. Both of us reload, but neither has ever loaded blanks before. Can anyone give me a source of information for those loads (hopefully on the Net)?

    Thanks.

    GunLaw

  • #2
    Can't think WHY you need them Gun Law...maybe starting a race or politely signaling -intruders or fellow hunters perhaps! .

    I use .22RF blanks from Ramset guns from a local builder -but watch the red coded ones for fire and blast!(used in ISSF training) and I have produced crimped .38spl shot-shells in the past with success for a non-richocetable road(kill)'roo/walaby injury misericord-type load, but .38 blanks...never.

    Ideas...well....I have a few as usual...
    A commercial shot-capsule(empty) or other loading of wad only may be an idea- but it could pay to remember what ever you do there will always be a slight danger of injury from the blast and wad/capsule/crimp pieces -probably up to 5m from muzzle if pointed at anything. They are also generally rather "dirty" to clean up afterwards and will not usually cycle a semi-auto either of course, if you have a rare 357/38auto that is....revolver would be OK.

    Parrafin wax "push-ins" with a grease-proof washer under a small charge of S/gun powder may be worth investigation, but I have no certified recipe or can find one in any of my books. Plastic bullets are used in indoor training in UK, but they are lethal at short range EG in a plane, but will not penetrate the pressurused "skin". Expanded vermiculite "wads" could also be worth a look...

    An interesting one...I will wait for the resident experts' progosis on this posting.
    There is no Spring without Winter, without Mistakes there is no Learning. There is no Life without Death, without Doubts there is no Faith. There is no Peace without War, without Fear there is no Courage. For without Mistakes, Doubts and Fears there are no pathways to Wisdom.
    Ron Owen.

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    • #3
      A quick search didnt turn up much on the net I suggest emailing or calling the sierra bullet tech line or emailing and asking them. http://www.sierrabullets.com/techservice/index.html


      ------------------
      VERITAS VINCIT
      VERITAS VINCIT
      A CRUCE SALUS

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      • #4
        Crimp die for crimping the mouth of the case: http://www.ch4d.com/ch4d/Catalog/Page25.htm

        ------------------
        VERITAS VINCIT
        VERITAS VINCIT
        A CRUCE SALUS

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        • #5
          Thanks for the info, Big Bunny and strmrdr.

          I don't think there is a great deal of use for them, either. My shooting buddy was approached by a group which sponsors teen-age(?) girls who own and ride horses in mounted drills, parades, etc. As explained to me, their interest is in using the blanks for demonstrations, maybe something like the old west shows. Shooting ballons from a galloping horse, etc. But he didn't give me too much information yet.

          I have loaded handgun shotshells in several different calibers. .38 Special is one of the least effective, because I can't find any cylinder-length cases to take more shot. I have used the shot capsules, but they are inconsistent. In other calibers, I use cylinder-length cases, usually made from longer cartridges. .308 Win. cases cut and trimmed to make .45 ACP shotshell, .30/40 Krag cut and trimmed (well, with a lot of other operations, too) to make .44 Magnum, etc. I have lots of information on handgun shotshells. But this request is just for blanks. Any projectile larger than powder flakes or cardboard wads might be dangerous.

          One other use for blanks is for training dogs, to get them used to gunfire. One of the tests for Schutzhund dogs is sensitivity to the sound of gunfire.

          I would never use blanks for signalling intruders! One could expect return fire!

          Those crimp dies are really expensive. I think we have to find a cheaper way, given the low quantities I expect these girls to want.

          Does anyone have load data? I didn't figure the bullet companies would be too sympathetic, since they are obviously not going to sell any bullets for this project.

          Thanks again, guys.

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          • #6
            I agree about the plastic cup type .38 shot capsules GunLaw, but if you score the plastic in a multi-cross design, they are far more consistent I find, with dust-shot preferred or #10 rat/snake-shot, if you don't have any.

            On reflection for .38 BLANK testing- I would go for around 5gn FFG black powder, with a milk carton over-wad only, S.P.Primer ignition.

            Safefy distance still "5m" though, best to fire into the air maybe, get the horses used to smaller charges first and the smell! It may well 'grow' on your girls and hopefully the(still)attached nags too.

            Best to clean the revolver well with hot-water shortly afterwards IMHO!
            There is no Spring without Winter, without Mistakes there is no Learning. There is no Life without Death, without Doubts there is no Faith. There is no Peace without War, without Fear there is no Courage. For without Mistakes, Doubts and Fears there are no pathways to Wisdom.
            Ron Owen.

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            • #7
              GunLaw --further to my last I am now told by our club armourer that packed cotton-wool or other soft fibre, with over-powder wad cut out from card or a milk-carton cardboard and with a candle-wax dripped "topping" over abt 3gn(or more... or less depending on the "bang" needed) of Red Dot or Unique will be a good starter for the proposed Wild West Show in your .38.

              Have fun -Sport!

              NOTE;-He is usually OK on reloading advice, but I have not tried this recipe, as I have had no need for it currently or in the past.
              There is no Spring without Winter, without Mistakes there is no Learning. There is no Life without Death, without Doubts there is no Faith. There is no Peace without War, without Fear there is no Courage. For without Mistakes, Doubts and Fears there are no pathways to Wisdom.
              Ron Owen.

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              • #8
                I used to do wild west shootout re-enactments for the local Catholic Church`s anual "round-up". We used .38 blanks loaded with black powder or pyrodex.Resize and prime your cases,fill to the top with black powder and use an empty case to cut out a disk from a styrofoam plate,place the disk on top of the powder and roll crimp it in place,add a bit of elmers glue around the mouth to make sure the thing doesnt spill it`s guts.
                Theyre super loud and you get a nice plume of smoke,a real crowd pleaser!
                Bossman

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                • #9
                  Re: Need reloading information for .38 Special blanks

                  Bossman, I like this, but how do I roll crimp a 357/38 case?

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                  • #10
                    Re: Need reloading information for .38 Special blanks

                    roys101, I believe he was using a standard crimping die. However this thread is 14 years old. Did you by any chance own a surplus store on the Oregon coast?
                    I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them.
                    Robert A. Heinlein

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                    • #11
                      Re: Need reloading information for .38 Special blanks

                      That's me. Are you in Oregon? I like your Heinlein quote. I need to get my store open again. I'd like to load some BP blanks for my .357 ss Vaquero for playing. I have a bunch of .357 brass.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Need reloading information for .38 Special blanks

                        Why not just used a primed case? A primer by itself is still pretty loud.

                        I let my seating do my crimp. The instructions that came with your die set will get you pretty close in most cases.
                        They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.

                        -- Benjamin Franklin

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                        • #13
                          Re: Need reloading information for .38 Special blanks

                          A primed case is a good idea. But I like the idea of lots of smoke and fire, that would be generated by BP. My Vaquero is ss so BP doesn't scare me too much. I like the idea of a star crimp. but then don't like the idea of "ruining" cases. Making blanks: Just another whimsy distracting me from responsibility. ^_^

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