Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby pitted bore » Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:53 pm

MRRJF wrote:So I started reloading some busters and another concern has popped up. Using the Hornady taper crimp die and crimping down to .476, this is NOT providing a good hold on the bullet. This is causing me some concern! I cannot crimp more as I understand the mouth of the case is where the head spacing occurs. This also make me wonder if the factory ammo is also suspect in regarding to bullet retention in the shell casing. Any thoughts from the experts?

MRRJF-
Not an expert, but here are some thoughts anyway.

Bullet retention aka "bullet pull" is an important part of 450B handloading that deviates somewhat from other cartridges. There are many threads in the reloading forum that discuss this, including problems and solutions involving crimping.

A couple of suggestions for exploring your problem, and I apologize if you have tried them already.

1) Have you checked bullet retention in your factory ammo? Doing so might either put your mind at ease regarding its quality, and might also provide a baseline for checking your reloads. I have used the same technique that Hoot has described employing in the past. That is, with an inertia bullet puller of good quality, how many solid whacks does it take to get the bullet out of the case?

With the 325-grain bullet weighing 30% more than the factory load, it's expected that disassembly may require a couple of whacks fewer. If your handloads come apart with just one or two firm whacks, then you need more bullet-case friction for proper retention. Crimping is only a part of bullet retention.

To check on your technique, try loading bullets of the more usual weights, and particularly the Hornady 250-grain FTX. (You don't have to use a primer or powder for this check.) If your loading techniques and equipment produce good retention with the factory-type bullet, then that indicates your problems are likely associated with the bullet, for which some remedies may be available.

A case mouth outside diameter of 0.472 inches is the SAAMI minimum, so you can decrease your crimped diameter to a bit less than 0.476 and still not be worried about proper headspace.

Please keep us informed of your progress.
--Bob
edited for typo repair
Last edited by pitted bore on Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby MRRJF » Mon Jul 09, 2018 4:51 pm

I think the extra weight of the Buster and the fact that I was only crimping to .476 may have been the problem. I will try a .474 crimp and see what is the result. For those who have not tried this bullet, it is the "Hammer of the Gods", for anything big and tough! Having used it in both 45-70/400gr and 44mag/300gr, I am excited to try it with the Bushmaster. More to come.......
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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby Al in Mi » Mon Jul 09, 2018 6:31 pm

MRRJF wrote:I think the extra weight of the Buster and the fact that I was only crimping to .476 may have been the problem. I will try a .474 crimp and see what is the result. For those who have not tried this bullet, it is the "Hammer of the Gods", for anything big and tough! Having used it in both 45-70/400gr and 44mag/300gr, I am excited to try it with the Bushmaster. More to come.......


I used them in my 500aimm testing on trees, i agree, unbelievable penetration.
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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby Hoot » Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:02 pm

No one ever mentions this but it doesn't take long to run even new brass through the resizer. Don't lube, try running it first w/o the lube.
just sayin'...

A trick I use that is not for everyone. I took one of my shell holders, carefully chucked it in my hobby lathe so that it was squared up and removed a little height. Running the cases up into the sizing die a little further (somewhere between .050-.100") It gives them a slightly smaller sizing taper and makes sure the base area is resized all the way down to where the web starts (not beyond). The shell holder for the 450b is a very common one. Comes with a lot of different die sets. If you do this to one of your shell holders as an experiment, mark the perimeter with a colored sharpie so you don't use it for seating. Shouldn't matter as most folks don't set up their seating die so that the shell holder contacts it, lest you apply a roll crimp.

If you don't have access to a lathe, or a friend with one, there's a slower po-man's method but even it requires a drill press. Measure the starting height with a caliper and write it down. Chuck the shell holder top down, square and get a fresh sheet of 180 Wet-or-Dry sandpaper. Run the speed up a little above slow, generously coat the 180 with some straight 30W and press the shellholder down onto the 180. Lift, move sheet, repeat several times and re-check height with a caliper. Repeat until you get it down to where you want it. This is assuming your time is less expensive than a lathe. ;) Also, it may take more than one sheet. Don't be stingy with the oil. Obviously, don't remove so much top as to get down into the extraction groove of the holder. Think about it...

Hoot
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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby plant_one » Mon Jul 09, 2018 11:21 pm

would some lapping compound and a steel block be a better option than 180 grit?
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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby Hoot » Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:28 am

plant_one wrote:would some lapping compound and a steel block be a better option than 180 grit?


I would be if you were removing .0005" but way too conservative for removing .050-.100". You need an aggressive approach cutting so much off. That's where a lathe really shines. Once you reach your desired height, you can do a pass or two with a finer wet-or-dry for a smoother surface finish.

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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby MRRJF » Sun Jul 15, 2018 4:42 pm

Ok folks here is a follow up on the Barnes Buster 325gr .451 bullet. I loaded up some busters using AA1680 and increasing the load up until I reached 1900+ fps without signs of excessive pressure. The taper crimp of .474 solved the loose bullet issues. So how did the buster do? Well accuracy was 3 moa at 100 meters and this was a slower load that shot best. However, that is not the purpose of this bullet. The max load was shot at 12 milk jugs and passed through them all and was not recovered! In contrast the Hornady bullet 250 ftx stopped in the 7th jug ( I ran out of jugs at this point). The buster is a monster! The one negative point and it could be a show stopper for this platform. The 325 gr buster did not feed well from the Ruger Ranch magazine, and would get caught up and when trying to feed! When the bolt was pulled back another cartridge would try to feed (stovepipe). Hard to explain the exact mechanics but this bullet cartridge combo did not work very well in this rifle. Next up the Barnes TSX 450 bushmaster.
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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby Al in Mi » Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:39 pm

I'd have to look at a RAR mag, but is it possible to make like a feed ramp insert ??

How many gr 1680 did you end up at?
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Re: Reloading Barnes 325 Busters

Postby pitted bore » Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:14 pm

MRRJF wrote:Ok folks here is a follow up on the Barnes Buster 325gr .451 bullet. ...

MRRJF-
What was the C.O.L. for your trials. I've been unable to find it in reading through your posts a couple of times.
Thanks.
--Bob
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