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Fellows, I am looking at a loading tool in 38 COLT. Is it the same as my Ballard? Thanks, moodyholler
 

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The 38 Colt went through some phases. The original 38 Colt's Navy used an outside lubricated bullet. Ideal made tools for them. Somewhere along the line, the military officially adopted the round and gave it an inside lubricated bullet. This is the 38 Long Colt. Again, Ideal made tools for them. The Ideal Number 1 was made for the 38 Long (outside lube) and the Ideal number 8 was made for the 38 Long Colt (inside lube). The mold on the Number 8 had a device that formed a hollow cavity in the base of the bullet. Whether or not either of these 2 rounds will work in the Ballard, I don't know. My 1893 Ideal book shows the 38 Extra Long as using a .358" diameter bullet. This is obviously the later inside lubed version. My 1890 WRA Co. catalog lists the 38 Long as being for Colt revolvers and rifles of that caliber. This is is the inside lubed round. MM93 has probably done some experimenting with both inside and outside lubed bullets.
 

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The Ballards I own or have owned in .38 Long, slugged arund .355-.357", so I've always used a regular bullet in them. I sometimes need to size them through my RCBS dies again, once the bullet is seated, if they wont chamber easily; the .38 Long case being slightly smaller than the .38 Spl, or .357 magnum. The .38 Short is quite a bit smaller in case neck size, but still works in the Ballard as a factory loaded round, but needs a bullet with a little more heeled shape to it.
I reload my .38 Longs with an original old Ideal tool marked .38 Ballard Long. I also cast bullets with this same tool, which mike a couple thousandths smaller at the base, than forward.
Hope this was the info you wanted? As Roundsworth indicated, it depends on the era of the tool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
My Ballard in 38 long has a .375 Dia bore and I am shooting heeled bullets in it. Does this tool cast a .357 or a .375 Bullet? Thanks, moodyholler
 

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The tool I use casts a .360" bullet. You'll have to check individual tools before purchase. Not sure what the one in question casts?
 
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