Thread: 303 Reloading. Steel Jackets
- 02-01-2011, 13:48 #1
303 Reloading. Steel Jackets
Now that the heady days of cheap HXP ammo at 20p a bang are over and even the South African and Yugoslavian stuff's been used up, I turn to reloadong. I have a nice supply of once fired HXP cases, so off we go! I've got the primers, the powder but it seems the S&B bullets I bought are steel jacketed. I only discovered this by accident.
The question is, do i want to fire these in my nice (and valuable) SMLE and No4? What are the bore wear considerations? Do they generate higher breech pressures due to the harder surface when engaging in the rifling. Is it a case of 'penny wise, pound foolish?' Or does the copper wash make it alright?
You thoughts greatly appreciated.RDS Firefighters.
Gods among Men
- 02-01-2011, 13:52 #2
Point of order, a No4 is a No4, a SMLE is a SMLE never the twain shall meet.Cymru Am Byth.
- 02-01-2011, 13:57 #3
- 02-01-2011, 14:53 #4
You are better off with some Sierra .311 diameter copper jacketed bullets, than that steel shite.
- 03-01-2011, 03:11 #5
Rather than fire steel jacketed bullets through your precious barrel, would it be feasible to cast bullets (heads?) without a jacket, purely of lead? Would this work ok? Or does it raise new problems?Electronic copy. Signed on the original...
- 03-01-2011, 10:29 #6
- Join Date
- Feb 2007
There are a lot of steel jacketed rounds out there, mostly copper plated so you don't notice it. Almost all the rounds designed for really big game have steel jackets. Are your rounds magnetic? There' also a version of brass called Tombak in German, it looks like steel, and Nickel or Nickel plated jackets are also out there.
Some of the oldest and most sucessfull rounds made in German are made of "Flussstahl". I'm talking the Brenneke "TIG" & "TUG". They fly really well with very consistent results on impact. I use them without concern, the steel used is very soft, Nickel plated and lubricated. They've been a sucess story for about a century now so I suspect that high barrel wear would have rung the alarm bells by now. On the plus side you get no copper build up in your bore. Now if some Polish bloke were to offer me a bag full on a street corner, I'd probably give him both barrels. I prefer the quality end of the market and since I'm shooting mostly big game and not punching holes in cardboard, it's affordable.Time spent with dogs and horses is never wasted.......
- 03-01-2011, 11:57 #7
Steel jacketed bullets (some coated with copper/cupro-nickel) have been commonly used and trialled for over a century. UK experience (vide Text Book of Small Arms) indicates that steel jackets cause no different bore wear to copper alloys, and that in fact steel jackets are the best method of minimising metal fouling. The only reason steel jackets are/were not commonly used was because cupro-nickel jackets were easier to mass-manufacture. I think EGB Reynolds also notes in one of his books that steel jackets do not reduce the service life of Enfield barrels.
- 03-01-2011, 12:20 #8
Thanks everyone. I had loaded up 40 rounds (4 batches of 10) for load develpment before I noticed the bullets were steel jacketed. Yes they are magnetic, that's how I found out. I have not yet fired them. My loading data is all US (Speer) and assumes copper (?) jacketed bullets. I am loading to well below max pressures for copper jackets and presume steel jackets must perform in a similar manner, pressure wise.
BTW have you noticed how much Lee Enfield stuff there is on fleabay at the moment? And what it's fetching!RDS Firefighters.
Gods among Men
- 03-01-2011, 12:50 #9
- 03-01-2011, 14:44 #10
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