Gas Checks

Ray7756

Well-Known Member
Hi guys
In process of buying a .22 hornet (cz527 American) and plan to reload for this and also cast my own bullets, have seen that some people use gas checks and it seems a good idea but I have no idea how to attach them to the base of the bullet, or are they put into the mold before casting ???
Cheers
Ray
 

Southern

Well-Known Member
You have to use gas checks when the muzzle velocity gets to a point, around 1,700 to 1,800 fps.
If you are just loading plinking rounds, like a .22 LR or .22 WMR, you don't need the gas checks.
But you will need to lube and size the bullets if you want to tune accuracy.

On the larger bores, like a .45-70 or .444, there are multiple sizing dies, and just a few thousandths of an inch can make the bullets just right for your cast loads, because of the bore and rifling differences among manufacturers, models, and years of production.
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
I will respectfully disagree. That is an out-dated myth. Your need for gas checks is based on the pressure your cartridge generates compared to the yield strength of the alloy you are using. For example: There are some Hornet loads using Unique that can generate almost 40,000 psi but only give 1800 fps. Soft alloy would be bad, without a gascheck? Far worse! In truth, after 30 years of shooting small bore cast bullets, at all velocities between 22LR and 2850 fps, I can tell you that if the bullet has a gascheck shank, put a gas check on it. Accuracy is far better.~Muir
 

Southern

Well-Known Member
I will take your word for that, as I have not shot any cast bullets below 7mm, so none at high pressure ( or velocity ). I did borrow a set of sizing dies to experiment with my .444 Marlin, and it did make a difference in accuracy, given the same load. But I just shoot 240 gr bullets at lower velocity, for fun and practice, and 265 and higher for hunting loads. I think the rifles I will probably be shooting cast bullets in the future mostly will be my 1888 Commission rifle, and some .303 Enfields which are 100 years old. The scarcity of proper jacketed bullets for my .22 Savage HP is almost enough to force me to try casting bullets for it, but I am on the lookout.
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
I will take your word for that, as I have not shot any cast bullets below 7mm, so none at high pressure ( or velocity ). I did borrow a set of sizing dies to experiment with my .444 Marlin, and it did make a difference in accuracy, given the same load. But I just shoot 240 gr bullets at lower velocity, for fun and practice, and 265 and higher for hunting loads. I think the rifles I will probably be shooting cast bullets in the future mostly will be my 1888 Commission rifle, and some .303 Enfields which are 100 years old. The scarcity of proper jacketed bullets for my .22 Savage HP is almost enough to force me to try casting bullets for it, but I am on the lookout.
I have, IIRC, an Ideal 58 grain, .229" RNGC mold if you want it, gratis. I was so frustrated with it when I needed .225" and got this behemoth bullet from an old Ideal mold. Just let me know. I have about 120 different molds... many of which just sit waiting for the proper gun! ;)

This is an old estate rifle I like to shoot. It's a "J" bore @ .320" and the 170 grain FP's at .322" shoot marvelously. ~Muir
 

VIGILAIRE

Well-Known Member
In truth, after 30 years of shooting small bore cast bullets, at all velocities between 22LR and 2850 fps, I can tell you that if the bullet has a gascheck shank, put a gas check on it. Accuracy is far better.~Muir
I am currently using hard cast gas checked bullets in 9.3, 308, 7mm and .223. All are flat point designs which would do at a push for hunting (where legal) and make for inexpensive plinking and practice.

I first looked into casting many years ago but got back into it a while back when supplies from America looked to be drying up a bit and thought self sufficiency would be the way forward (see Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall!).
 

Muir

Well-Known Member
I am currently using hard cast gas checked bullets in 9.3, 308, 7mm and .223. All are flat point designs which would do at a push for hunting (where legal) and make for inexpensive plinking and practice.

I first looked into casting many years ago but got back into it a while back when supplies from America looked to be drying up a bit and thought self sufficiency would be the way forward (see Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall!).
I'm sure you find it very satisfying. I do. I have several rifles I use only with cast bullets. Along with all the other attributes you mentioned, the light practice charges and lead bullets induce as much barrel wear as a 22LR. Very kind to your rifle.~Muir
 

Southern

Well-Known Member
That is a cool old rifle and knife you have there.

I may take you up on that .229 mold. It wouldn't hurt to shoot light loads in the old .22 HP saddle gun, anyway. Since I restored it, I want to bag something with it.

For my 1888 8x57J, I load the .321" diameter 170-gr FN bullets made for the .32 lever guns ( for which I also load ), and shoot them at about 2,400 fps as a hunting load, with 44.0 of IMR-4064, which puts them right to the sights in the lowest position for 100 yards.
 

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