Thursday, December 23, 2010

My 32 rim fire reloading experiments

These are my .32 rim fire pistols
top is a antique bacon single shot
the middle one is a antique Sharps & Hankins 4 barrel pistol
the other 2 are antique 4 barrel Remington Elliots




This is how i reload 32 short rimfire ammo

 When i saw the re loadable 32 rimfire cases with the offset blank i thought
there must be a better way.When i saw the  27 Cal Ramset Powder Charge blanks at home depot i knew i found it.The "Green" has about 2.3 grs of powder, "Brown" has about 1.7 grs.i use the green.anything more powerful cant be used.

I use  32 short Colt Brass.(not colt new police)

- a 0.311-0.313" Round Ball Weighs about 48 grs

-or a 32 colt heeled bullet

- a 17/64"  drill bit was used. i use a lathe to drill the holes.

I Drilled a two step hole into the base of the 32 Short Colt Brass - a 17/64" all the way through the bottom, then a shallow 21/64 in the base, deep enough that the .322 base Ramset charge sits almost flush.
I used a lathe only because i have one i could of used my drill press with another drill chuck
facing upwards.I have found that i don't need to worry about crushing the brass case as long as i clamp it
close to the rim because there seems to be enough brass near the bottom of the case to keep it from crushing.
   


The best part of this setup is that the Ramset is both the primer and the powder charge, and you don't have to line up the round to align with the firing pin like you do with the Dixie style cases. The powder seems to be like Bullseye in Burn Rate (fast)  "Green" contains a  mild charge for a 48 gr Round Ball. 

i de-prime using a metal rod and a small hammer.

of course a .22 or .25 calibre should work also if the gun has a longer vertical firing pin that will reach
the blank. I haven't yet experimented with them yet but will.
 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
32 long rimfire reloading
I started with some vintage 32 long colt rounds i used a bullet puller to remove the lead bullet then i dumped out the gun powder. after that i fired off the primer in a gun so they would be inert. i probably could have soaked them in water for the same results.I then drilled them out the same way as the shorts above.
 

I reloaded the heeled lead bullet with a set of 32 long colt dies. before putting in the powder or hilti cap on  of course. 




I opened the .27 cal. caps and dumped out the gunpowder because these will be used with black powder
i glued the caps in using a loktite type glue to help make a seal.

I found that the emptied out blanks make no noise at all when fired just a very small puff of smoke so they can be fired indoors for testing purposes without the neighbours freaking out and calling the police.i just make sure theirs no open gunpowder containers of anything around.

white(gray) or brown caps would not need to be opened and could be used as is because of there light charge.
Brown or white 27 Cal charges are harder to find but are sometimes found on ebay cheap because nobody really wants them.
As you can see here the reloads all fired properly in my revolver. but i have found that the brass cap is harder than a original copper rimfire case so the gun has to have a strong mainspring to fire it. i had to replace the mainspring in my sharps pistol before it would work it worked fine on the old 32 rf rounds.





I am having problems with indexing in some guns (revolvers work best)

The pepperbox pistol below gun gave me some problems because it has a rotating firing pin

i was going to remove the rim completely and use a thin brass washer between the brass case and the blank but i tried trimming the rim down instead(above). and it seemed to work the best on this gun.
my sharps worked better because the firing pin rotates when the hammer is pulled back.

 

  


This is my newest antique gun a 32 rimfire red jacket pistol made by lee arms.









I tried using a .22 acorn blank on the 32 colt brass by drilling a 7/32 hole and a 9/32 step so the .22
blank would sit in the .32 colt case and it worked great i only made one just to try it out but it may be a
better way to do it if you have a longer vertical firing pin.

I used a drill chuck to hold the brass case and drilled it with my cordless drill it works better than anything else i have used except my lathe. But it did drill the hole a bit off centre i will have to make up some more like this.  
This was a berdan primed case i was surprised to see that there was about a 1/4 inch of brass to drill through on the bottom of the case.

                                            
   
                            As you can see below the .22rim(.276) on the right is not that much smaller than the .27 rim at (.327)                                          
                                        .22 blank seated in the brass
                               
   I Fired it with the blank installed i did not load this one i fired the blank just to test it, the blank looks like it is made of a really soft brass.
I want to add it was the folks over at the castboolits forum that came up with the .22 blank idea thanks to whoever it was who sent me the link.

Go ahead and send more ideas and i will add them to the bottom of the page under comments after i review them.
Thanks 


 Lyman made the following 32 colt molds but are almost impossible to find anymore.
299-152  80 gr RN Heel 32 Short Colt Heel Base

299-153  90 gr RN Heel 32 Long Colt Heel Base

299-154  105 gr RN Heel 32 Long Colt Heel Base

299-159  80 gr RN-FP-HB 32 long Colt Hollow Base


I bought my mould from old west bullet moulds http://www.oldwestbulletmoulds.com/

32 colt dies and brass can also be a challenge to find.
.320 European brass can also be used it has a thinner rim than the 32 colt but is otherwise the same. 







CAUTION: The information and data contained on the reloading pages is for informational purposes only. Cross-referencing the posted reloading data information for its' accuracy & safety (before use) is everyone's own responsibility.

The end user is solely responsible for EVERYTHING that may occur using this data.