Can someone enlighten me about reloading pistol-caliber shot shells? I have reloaded for several years, but only standard shells.
Thanks for the answer. Trap, I don't know enough to ask questions about the construction of the shell, Please, lead me through it or give me site and I will do the research. I have been using Spreer Shot Shell and they are constructed with shot caps (blue plastic). I was unaware of the use of shot cards. As far as caliber, I have been using 38/357, but I am open as long as I can buy components.Larry, what caliber? and are you going to use shot caps, or shot and card?
Sounds just like some snakeshot 'wadcutter' I have made in 357. Used trail boss and an over powder card..some 8 or 9 shot and another card and a good roll crimp. Not good past a few yards..but good enough on snakes and rats.Larry, I could probably write a volume on it, and leave you more confused.
I started experimenting with it 50yrs ago in my 1917 Colt with the 12" bbl. I used '06 and .308 blanks cut off flush with the cylinder when chambered with the half moon clips. used an old steel .45acp case to cut cardboard and cork wads. Used the blank powder in increments until I had flame coming from the muzzle and shot scattered every where for a pattern. .45acp roll crimp over the cork gasket material wad.
The biggest problem is the centrifugal spin a rifled barrel puts on the shot or cap, making the pattern spread way to fast. I got a substantial improvement by dripping beeswax into the shot. It was a Quail killer at 10yrds, most likely illegal, but when you're living in the sticks and hungry, nothing is illegal!
Few years later, a buddy had a Contender with the .44/410 barrel, a bunch of brass, and bucket of Speer shot caps. If we could fit it in a shot cap, we tried it, with, and without the beeswax which always made an improvement. Pieces of piano wire with the wax was the most impressive. After seeing the results on coffee cans full of water, watermelons, and some unfortunate squirrels, I sure wouldn't want to get hit with one.
With the shot caps, we used the Speer loading data with some small changes for the loaded cap weight. BTW...if you use the wax, compensate for the added weight. When I was loading the 45 shotshells, standard LP primers, figured out a powder charge, waxed cardboard disc about the thickness of a credit card seated down snug on the powder, filled the case just short of the case mouth, cork disc, and crimped. I was young, dumb, and bullet proof back then. Later I got a "little smarter", and did some looking to compare BP loads, and the smokeless equivalent. I did try some cut down .410 shot cups, but that turned into a waste of time and powder, as they took up have the case capacity anyhow.
If you have some specific questions, I'll do my best to help you out. I'm not the only one to experiment with this, just do a Google search for "reloading pistol-caliber shot shells?", and there's pages of results from guys like me that found what works, and what doesn't.
sg, that's pretty much it. I haven't loaded any since TralBoss hit the market, but it would be the best powder I can think of to play with. Did you ever try the beeswax for more range? The smaller the shot with the wax, the better the distance.Sounds just like some snakeshot 'wadcutter' I have made in 357. Used trail boss and an over powder card..some 8 or 9 shot and another card and a good roll crimp. Not good past a few yards..but good enough on snakes and rats.
If you use shot loads in a revolver you might (will) have to drill out the flash hole, When I used a shot load in my TC super 14 I never had a problem, but when I used them in my Redhawk the primers would back out and lock up the gun!If you go over to the Cast Boolits forum site there is a whole section devoted to loading "Shot Loads for Pistols" it is located under the heading " Casting & Reloading " . The "Shot Loads For Pistols" is right below the title "Reloading Equipment" and above "Smokeless Paper Patching" .
A lot of them ole boys are plagued with Carpenter Bees and enjoy woking up shot loads to dispatch the Carpenter Bee's with handguns ... You can read but if you want to ask questions ...you might need to sign up and become a member . See if this link will get you there www.castboolits.gunloads.com I'm not computer smart this link might drag you off into the weeds ... I don't know .
I never tried the wax idea in the shot..though have used wax bullets or plugs for fireforming.sg, that's pretty much it. I haven't loaded any since TralBoss hit the market, but it would be the best powder I can think of to play with. Did you ever try the beeswax for more range? The smaller the shot with the wax, the better the distance.
Looks like you used a roll crimp on the seven you have left?I played with loading them a few years ago, and like Dem27 said, they are pretty useless. I bought one box of the .44 Magnum capsules and one box of the .38/.357 capsules and that was the extent of my loading them. I still have seven of the .44 magnum ones left.
View attachment 276269
These things are the only reason I ever bought a Speer Reloading Manual, it is the only manual that had a recipe for them, because the capsules are made by them. I gutted old shotgun shells to get the shot for them. These capsules are self-enclosed, so you don't really need any kind of shot card (I don't think), or at least I did not use any. I screw up a bunch of them trying to figure out the crimp on them until I realized that they don't need any kind of heavy duty crimp.