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32-20 wcf

Thread in 'Reloading' started by Jtsmith0245, Nov 10, 2019.

  1. Jtsmith0245

    Jtsmith0245 Hunter

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    Wondering if anyone out there in ODT land reloads for 32-20? Just recently picked up an original 1894 marlin made around 1906-‘07 and looking to start reloading to feed the old girl. Any suggestions for bullet molds for casting (my stepfather has around 600 pounds of wheel weights so that’s what I’ll be using for my lead source)? And any load data suggestions for plinking/cowboy loads? Die sets that work well for the cartridge? Thanks in advance guys!
     
  2. tas6691

    tas6691 ODT Junkie! Supporter

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    I do. Its a fun cartridge but kind of a challenge to reload. I loaded 44/40 and 38/40 for years but still tend to lose some 32/20 every time I load a batch. You gotta go slow and be careful when the case enters the sizing die or the neck will roll. I like the RCBS cowboy dies for all those old calibers and shooting lead bullets.

    I dont cast so cant help there. I'll go up to my barn and check my notes on loads tomorrow and let you know.
     
  3. SpeedyR

    SpeedyR ODT Junkie!

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    I load some for a SAA replica revolver (EMF Hartford) and a lever gun. I am pretty sure I've mostly used 115gr cast bullets but will look tomorrow for loads and the actual bullet.

    Hopefully I'll be getting into casting soon but don't have any molds for the 32-20. Yet.
     
  4. Jtsmith0245

    Jtsmith0245 Hunter

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    @tas6691 6691 I have heard it could be tricky with the thin case. whenever I get a setup for it I’m sure I’ll have a few I destroy before I get the technique down. I’ve heard good things about the RCBS dies so I’ll definitely check them out!

    @SpeedyR casting is a lot of fun once you get the technique dialed in! As I kind of hinted above my stepdad cast quite a bit for quite a few different cartridges for 9mm , 357/38 41 mag and 44 mag and I’ve helped him out. It’s pretty satisfying to say the least! I saw a mold on eBay a few days back for a 100gr hollowpoint and I’m kicking myself for not picking it up
     
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  5. gh1950

    gh1950 The Hen that laid the Golden Legos

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    make sure you load from a manual, not info off the internet.

    There are two levels of 32//20 - pistol and rifle.

    Probably no harm in shooting a pistol load in a rifle but performance would be disappointing.
     
  6. tas6691

    tas6691 ODT Junkie! Supporter

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    While there are 32/20 RIFLE loads listed for modern replicas, pistol performance in a rifle is far from disappointing as long as you remember what your dealing with. Even the rifle loads arent suitable for anything over coyote sized critters, much less deer size game, its still a joy to plink with and enjoy the milder rounds accuracy.I guess at shorter ranges and using a modern bullet like a Hornady XTP and a rifle load , one could cleanly kill a deer, but why when so many other more suitable cartridges are available. The 32/20 pistol load is an armadillo killer for sure!!
     
  7. gh1950

    gh1950 The Hen that laid the Golden Legos

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    32/20 rifle loads were offered commercially for turn of the century rifles.

    When the load became obsolete in rifles, the heavy load was dropped because it could still be loaded in pistols of varying quality. The two loads were sold at a time when common sense took the place of warning labels and the nanny state protecting us from ourselves.

    "In the day" the 32/20 was considered a decent deer killer, but that was in a day when a farmer wanted one gun that was cheap to shoot and could be used on everything from rabbits to deer. It wasn't that big a deal that it was marginal for killing deer. If certainly would not be my first choice for shooting a deer, and I'm not recommending that anyone do so, but it was adequate in the time and place.
     
  8. SpeedyR

    SpeedyR ODT Junkie!

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    just checked. I have been shooting a 115gr LRNFP bullet over titegroup. I looked at my loads which were 2.5 and 2.7gr, but also referenced the 50th edition Lyman manual (most recent) and starting load was 3.2 up to 3.6.

    My guess is my loads were more along the lines of a Cowboy Action light load vs. a traditional 32-20 load. Just looked at the Hodgden website for the 32-20 and it shows 115gr cast at 2.7 ->3.0gr for pistols.

    FYI I shoot them out of a 5 1/2" SAA replica (and I'd love to have a match if anyone wants to get rid of a 5 1/2" 32-20 Blackpowder frame SAA replica) and a really old Model 92 (pre 1900).

    The Lyman guide shows a lot of loads for their cast #311008 115gr FP bullet (they show sized to .312, mine are sized .313 and seem to shoot fine in my pistol).

    I also agree with tas about the thin necks on the brass. I load 22 hornet and bees and it's similar, you are bound to loose a few here and there when things aren't perfectly aligned.

    Starline is a great source for brass, it's as good as anything else I've used.
     
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