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Thread: .303 185 RN lee cast. Load advice

  1. #1

    .303 185 RN lee cast. Load advice

    is anyone using lee .312 cast bullets. any recomendation on loads would be very welcome.

  2. #2
    I am a newbie at loading cast bullets but do know that to get the best out of any cast lead bullet it must match the throat of the rifle that it's fired through. At one time it was thought that having the bullet 0.001" over groove size was the thing to do but ovr the last few decades it's been proven that it must match throat size so it seals the bore.

    Throat size is often larger than groove size too I understand.

    may i suggest you head to Cast Boolits forums:-

    as they will fill you in on just how you can get these to shoot well. Even how to bump the bullets up to fit the throat of your rifle better.

    Now I don't usually post other forums addresses here but this is a specialised subject and this is THE best place that I know to get the knowledge which you seek.

  3. #3
    SD Regular
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    East Midlands M1/M69 Junction 21
    Hi. Is this for outdoors use at a hundred yards or indoors use? Good results for the latter can be had using Trail Boss where the loading will give about 1,100 fps from a standard SMLE or No4 length barrel. Probably drops like a stone after fifty yards but OK for indoor use. A tip is to use a expander plug such as RCBS or Lyman's M die to pre-expand the inside of the sized case to that of your lead bullet.

  4. #4
    Or even, God Forbid, the Lee Universal expander die!

  5. #5
    its for 100yard outdoor use. what loads are people using with trail boss?

  6. #6
    You'll find Trail Boss loads here:
    Basic Manual Download

    Consider H4198... Mine shot 308 nominal RCBS 180grain FP ok (gas checked).

    Don't assume these lead loads are "wimpy" as they'll punch through 3/8 steel real well and in a manner the 44 Mag would not...

  7. #7
    Established Poster
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Tokoroa, South Waikato,NZ
    Go easy with Trail Boss it's great for sub sonic loads it doesn't like fillers or compressed loads 8.0 grn to about 12.0 grn is a use able spread,
    21.5 grn of H4198 is a good start load, also 16.0 grn of Alliant 2400 a small amount of dacron fibre to keep the powder against the primer helps with the accuracy, just use standard primers and normal case prep no special
    tweaks are needed get a Lyman M die to make bullet seating easier, I like to start with once fired cases when working up loads not sure if it helps but it can't hurt, shooting cast bullets is fun I haven't shot many jacketed bullets since taking up bullet casting, pity you have such tough laws in the UK cast bullets are great for shooting deer they don't damage much meat, those bullets of yours at 1800fps will do the job nicely. Robert.

  8. #8
    SD Regular
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    East Midlands M1/M69 Junction 21
    ROBERTW is correct. In fact Trail Boss if compressed such that the doughnut shape kernels break is dangerous. I won't post the loads that are being used here in the Midlands but they were worked out using the advice in the manual, common sense, and then some testing.

  9. #9
    There is no need to brain-work loads for Trail Boss. Filled to a level to the base of the bullet is 'maximum' charge weight. Seventy percent of that weight is 'minimum' or starting. I would also recommend 4198 and Unique but I can't recommend dacron fillers, or any filler. WHen I was shooting Cast Bullet Association competition 25 years ago some rifles were showing up with bulged chambers in the neck area. The common denominator for this bulge was a filler. Fillers are an old idea that has been dragged through the ages in print, but it is safer to do without them.

    I'd like to know how the OP is going to tackle the shooting. Powder choice it so far down the list of things that must be attended to for accurate cast bullet shooting (As Brit alluded to with regard to bullet size VS throat diameter) that powder is almost an after thought. Like ROBERTW I also hunt deer with cast bullets and enjoy it. I prefer well fitted, heat treated, bullets shot at jacketed speeds. Very satisfying.~Muir

  10. #10
    Have you slugged the bore to start with? .312" sounds small. I use .315" in my SMLE with a starting load of 25gr Accurate 5744 (cheaper than trail boss) - now sold as Lovex D060 but the same powder from Westlander. You need to get the loading data of the net and work up a load to be safe. 5744 is a great powder for cast boolits in many calibres.
    I use a NOE mould no 316299 for my boolit and that's good for up to 600 yds.
    For indoor I use a 115gr 'soupcan' which works well with 4gr Viht 310 pistol powder - DO NOT download slow burning rifle powders.
    Get yourself on the cast boolit forum:
    Cast Boolits

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