Friday, February 7, 2014

.32 S & W, The Long and Short of It

I finally got my .32 S & W longs loaded up last weekend.  I also loaded up three dozen of the stubby kind to use in my Marbles .303 Savage adapter.  It took me an extra week to get it done because I hadn't primed any in about 20 years and my .32 S & W shell holders were in a box with a set of rifle dies.  Not even one like .30 carbine that you might mistake for a .32 S & W Long shell holder either.  It took a week to find them so I could prime the cases.   Ugh.

Data on the .32 S & W and .32 S & W Long  is a little harder to come by than I expected.  I found some in the Speer Manual #12 that listed powders like WW 296 and H 110.  I thought that was kind of odd since those powders really shine in cartridges like the .357 and .44 Magnums that have pressure limits about three times the limit for the .32 S & W Long so I didn't try any of those.  

Ken Waters has an article on the .32 S & W in his Pet Loads book and it has the most data that I found in any single source. I used one of his loads because I had the powder and a #5 rotor on the Little Dandy threw exactly the correct charge when I checked it on the powder scale.

My little 93 grain Lee bullet mold casts bullets that are just shy of 91 grains with the particular alloy that's in the pot right now and they don't look bad.

Obviously, these can't be confused with the .32 Colt New Police which is the exact same thing but with a flat meplat on the bullet.   These are round nosed.  The way Horace and Daniel meant them to be.

Along the way, I decided to start work on a new cartridge.  Everybody seems to be enamored of sub-sonic this and that and long bullets in small cases so I decided to make the ultimate sub-sonic sniper bullet.

I'm going to call it the .32 S & W Blackout.  Its a 247 grain bullet cast from an old Lyman mold for a Gewehr 88 in a .32 S & W case.  (Might have to size it down just a bit).   Hey, if Colt could give the .32 S & W Long a different name just because they loaded a slightly flattened bullet in it, I can sure give the .32 S & W a different name with this long old bullet stuffed into it!   

According to Mr. Greenhill, if it can get to 300 fps muzzle velocity, a barrel with a 1 in 4 twist should stabilize it.   Its the ultimate sniper cartridge because you should be able to watch the bullet as it goes all the way to the target.  If you are quick about it, you might be able to run after the bullet and nudge it one way or the other to make corrections before it gets there too.  

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