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Vincerama

What headstamp .38 special brass is good to cut down to "mid colt" length? What to avoid?

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Hi guys! I went to an ICORE match with my 625 and had a lot of fun, but decided that, heck, those 8 shot revos are a lot less trouble (especially when you miss a lot on steel). So I went out and picked up a 627 (I had considered the 929 as well, but decided I didn't want another moonclip-only gun).

Perusing the forums, I saw the arguments for shooting specials, long colt, short colt and the .900" wildcat "mid/min colt". I sorted out my pile of .38s and the ones I have most of are headstamped R-P and PMC. However, some research shows that those are the two brands that tend to get thicker as you go down the case, so cutting them will leave the mouth with pretty thick brass.

A question I couldn't find an answer to was ... what headstamp/brand of .38 special brass is actually good to cut down?

 

And before the naysayers pop in, yes, I'll certainly shoot with .38 special first. And I'll dabble with both the other colt lengths as well. The cut down .38s seem worth investigating as well though so I thought I'd see what is a good brand of brass to try it on.

Thanks!

 

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No experience cutting them but I want suggest that another issue for you might be choosing brass and moon clip combos that work for you. If you have R-P, I believe that’s Remington which gives you lots of choices. When I got my 627, I had Winchester and Blazer brass that’s harder to moon. I ended up starting over and getting new Starline Short Colt. Btw, now that my cylinder has been properly champfered, not a lot of difference loading specials and Short Colt but the extractions are a lot cleaner.

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Thanks Mcfoto! I won't go big on buying brass until I check out moonclip/brass combos!
 

I guess I should practice and do some matches with full sized .38 specials first instead of getting caught up in the gamer aspect!

 

 

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Why not just buy from star line? They make both short Colt and long Colt and it will save you hours of work. Since you’re buying brass anyway, I’m not sure what advantage there is to cutting your own.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I was looking to cut done some .38 SPL down to Mid length (basically .38 Super length) for my 627 and I initially was planning on using RP because I had lots of it and it fits decent in the clips I had.  Well I found out quickly that when cut down, RP had too much internal taper near the bottom of the case and would bulge with the 160 bullets I planned on using. I dug around and found I had a batch of Federal cases that worked the same in the clips and they had less internal taper so when they were cut down the 160 gr. bullets seated fine.    

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Thanks Intel6, that's the type of info I was looking for!

Radny97, yes, I think before going to cut down to .900, I'll try full sized specials and then try the Starline Long Colt.

People cut down to .900 to have a case that is short enough such that the empties call fall out on a full extractor stroke, and load faster than long .38 special cases (for USPSA/ICORE competition). The .38 Short Colt is probably the most popular, but it's right on the edge of scary loading and I'd rather have some buffer room in my loadings (ie; a safety margin against over pressure loading by accident).

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On ‎3‎/‎7‎/‎2019 at 7:45 PM, Vincerama said:

Hi guys! I went to an ICORE match with my 625 and had a lot of fun, but decided that, heck, those 8 shot revos are a lot less trouble (especially when you miss a lot on steel). So I went out and picked up a 627 (I had considered the 929 as well, but decided I didn't want another moonclip-only gun).

Perusing the forums, I saw the arguments for shooting specials, long colt, short colt and the .900" wildcat "mid/min colt". I sorted out my pile of .38s and the ones I have most of are headstamped R-P and PMC. However, some research shows that those are the two brands that tend to get thicker as you go down the case, so cutting them will leave the mouth with pretty thick brass.

A question I couldn't find an answer to was ... what headstamp/brand of .38 special brass is actually good to cut down?

 

And before the naysayers pop in, yes, I'll certainly shoot with .38 special first. And I'll dabble with both the other colt lengths as well. The cut down .38s seem worth investigating as well though so I thought I'd see what is a good brand of brass to try it on.

Thanks!

 

I used R-P because they fit my moon clips the best.

Made them the same length as 38 super brass with a 160 Bayou.

3.5grs of Clays or Clay Dot seems to do the trick for 130's power factor

I liked the mid length stuff because my hands are large and it made it smoother to get the moon clip into the cyl.

Short Costs I hit my fingers on the side of the gun.

Honestly

Not sure it was worth the time to cut them down

But I did it last winter as a project to pass the time.

Worked fine last year BUT FWIW

I'm going back to Short Colts for the 627's

Cause I like the load I have for it better than the mid length load

Enjoy the Journey!!!

NEil

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I cut down Rem and Fed for my 627 because that is what fits my clips. I'm running short colt length with 147 blue bullets and TG powder making minor at 130 PF

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Thanks guys. I've read that the R-P brass gets thicker as you get closer to the rim, and so that it's better to use other brass IF you are going to trim down brass for "speedy reloads".

So I was looking to see if anyone knew of a "good brass" to trim down. I can, of course just do it myself and sacrifice a few cases to find out, but I thought someone might have already done this and could say "Oh, yeah, use CBC headstamped brass for that". And ... does it really matter if the case walls are thick if you chamfer the case mouth? If the bullet causes an hourglass shape in say a the midlength .900" case does it matter really or will it cause the case to split, or the bullet to be inaccurate because it's "swaging down" into the case?

Thanks!

 

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On 3/10/2019 at 5:59 PM, Water63 said:

I cut down Rem and Fed for my 627 because that is what fits my clips. I'm running short colt length with 147 blue bullets and TG powder making minor at 130 PF

Just getting into revolver with short colt and plan on TG and the 147 Blue Bullet. What’s a good starting point for TG and OAL?

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Not trying to naysay, but if you haven't bought moons yet, get ones sized for Starline and then just but corresponding brass. It's a little pricey new, but you can reload it a whole bunch and order Special/Mid/Short brass turnkey without worrying about trimming. The right moons will let you cycle between lengths as much as you want, so you can shoot Spl while working up a Mid load, etc.

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On 3/16/2019 at 10:06 AM, Jay1957 said:

Just getting into revolver with short colt and plan on TG and the 147 Blue Bullet. What’s a good starting point for TG and OAL?

Sorry for the delay been working instead of playing. I'm running 3.3 TG OAL 1.2 it is giving me 135 PF out of the 5" 627.I'm running the 147RN Blue Bullets

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Thanks. I’ve decided on the 160 Bayou Bullet over 3 Grp Tite Group, but will probably switch to VV N320, which burns a bunch cleaner. Aside from weight, the main reason I am changing is color. I shoot Blue Bullets in 9mm and don’t want to mix them up.

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Jay I actually shot 165 extremes in the 38 spl loads you should get good results.the TG is not causing any issues as far as fouling I am running my cut down brass at short colt specs. SNS has USPSA discount and they have the 160's also

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