.38/72 WCF Loading Data

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by DavidR, Aug 31, 2009.

  1. DavidR

    DavidR New Member

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    I Have a Model 1895 Winchester MFG. 1904 in Very Good condition--Bright bore ---very tight action--
    anyone have loding data for a 270 GR Hornady Bullet-----any info would be aprecated---Iam new at this sight ---hope this works:)
  2. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

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    Welcome to the forums; I don't reload or shoot this cartridge, but some backgroud would help others answer your question faster :

    0 - Which reloading manuals do you have at your disposal?

    1 - Do you have the dies already?

    2 - Are you using new brass, prev-fired or forming?

    3 - Which powders do you have available or are considering?

    4 - Which 270gr hornady are you using? Part #, Pointed or flat nose?

    5 - How much do you plan on shooting this gun? Reloading for this cartridge is very spendy, as is buying factory ammo, but if you're not shooting it much, then stock up on factory. It may take awhile to recoup your up front cost.

    This should give someone familiar with reloading this cartridge a much better headstart.

    Semper Fi,

    Woolley
  3. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    David, welcome aboard. I don't re-load for the 38-72 but I do load for the 405 Winchester, the 35 Winchester and most other Winchester model 86 cartridges. Some data I came across would suggest about 27-28 grains of IMR 3031 or IMR 4198, either should be a very good starting point with your 270 grain bullet. The one thing I would caution you is to load only one or two rounds and see if they chamber. Often times, especially in the 40-65 and 40-82 I have found chamber dimensions variances enough that the round will not chamber lets say with a .406 sized bullet and the next chamber will take clear up to a .410 bullet. Brass thickness can be another challenge because basic brass made today is usually much thicker than old factory brass and could also cause you grief. The good news is that 405 Winchester brass is the perfect size and until it became available fairly recently you would have been left to use 30-40 Krag brass (assuming you don't have factory 38-72) and that would have been a pain because it is really too short. Please keep in mind I am not trying to discourage you, but rather to make you aware there could be challenges that you probably would not ever learn or encounter if you were loading for a 30-06.


    Ron
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2009
  4. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

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    My second edition of Cartridges of the World lists three loads.

    The factory load (they don't say which one, but I presume WW), which is a 275 grain bullet at 1475 fps for 1330 foot pounds of muzzle energy.

    Lyman #375167 cast bullet, 275 grains, 24.0 grains of 4759, giving a velocity of 1350 fps and an energy of 1120 foot pounds.

    255 grain jacketed soft point, 33.0 grains of 3031, giving a velocity of 1735 and an energy of 1715 foot pounds.

    That's the only thing I have with loads for that caliber.
  5. Hammerslagger

    Hammerslagger New Member

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    If DavidR actually has the tools and brass to load this cartridge, I will try to find some of my 60 year old loading manuals that likely have data for powders that are still available..

    Let us know.
  6. DavidR

    DavidR New Member

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    Have new Bertram brass---RCBS Dies------270 Gr RN Hornady#3715 Bullet
    3031 Powder---XMP5744 Powder-----Have no load info in the Manuals that I have---My granddad gave me the rifle and old loading tools and 2 box's of old UMC Rounds in the early 1950's---all my info around the local Gun club so far ---I dont trust at all!!!
    Thanks to all who answered this----any and all info would be a Great Help--- thanks Dave
  7. DavidR

    DavidR New Member

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    Pleas let me know on your 60 year data====thanks much for your info---Dave
  8. Hammerslagger

    Hammerslagger New Member

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    Ever think about selling this rather unusual caliber 1895 Win. to a serious collector for big bucks? It was never very popular. No many were likely made. It was apparently "all done" by the late 1930's.

    Your original boxes of ammo likely pre-date 1955, as I can not find it in a 1955 Stoeger "Bible". They are likely quite valuable to a serious collector with a rifle in this caliber.

    Phil Sharpe (to my surprise) lists no loads for 38-72 his "Complete Gide to Handloading" c. 1937, 1941, 1949. I have a 3rd. edition (1949). He does list loads for many seldom encountered calibers of the late 1930's and 1940's.

    Somewhere, I have a late 1940's Lyman manual, which might still have some data. However, I have been unable to locate it. If I find more info, I will post.

    "Cartridges of the World" 6th ed. by Frank C. Barnes (Barnes bullets) list a the same 3031 powder load as member Alpo. This is the only jacketed bullet load listed. Barnes lists specs as: 0.378" diameter bullet; 0.397" neck diameter; and 2.58 OAL of case. I failed to copy OAL cartridge length and no seating depths were listed.

    If you are going to shoot it, proceed with caution and a chronograph.

    There is more load data available for the .38-55 Win-Marlin-Ballard. One would think that its case capacity is likely at least 20% smaller than the .38-72, but I would have to empirically verify such by comparison with a seated bullet before substituting data. The second number group in a late 19th Century caliber is not always the actual case capacity in Black Powder weight!
  9. DavidR

    DavidR New Member

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    This was the first rifle that I shot as a very young boy----I lived with my grandparents for a number of years ----I could not think about selling any of it!!!====I will proceed with caution ---Thanks so much for all who have replyed to this ----what a great sight ----so many people with so much info----many thanks to all----Dave
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