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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys

The first thing I should say is:

WARNING THESE LOADS WERE DEVELOPED AND TESTED FOR MY RIFLE ONLY. DO NOT USE THIS INFORMATION IN YOUR OWN RIFLE WITHOUT FOLLOWING SAFE RELOADING PRACTICES.

Now that is over with… I have recently moved house and went to check out the local gun shops and found a new brand of projectile I have never tried before, the ‘Westcast Gold Match’ 350 grain round nose flat point. A cast lead projectile with a hard coat of some ‘special’ lube, and the packaging suggests that the lube is good up to 1700FPS.
As the price was good, $A45 for 250, I grabbed a bag. The projectiles measures 0.459 and the lube felt rough and quite hard, I could not scratch any off with a fingernail.

Just as a comparison the next photo is the Westcast 350g, a Hawksbury River 405g, and my own molded Lee 405g hollow base. Out of interest the Hawksbury River rate their lube up to 2200 FPS!

I got some advice from another forum member about different primers possibly having different results so I decided to test a couple while I was testing the new projectile. My standard is the Remington 9 ½ large rifle primer, and I got some CCI BR2 large rifle primers to test against.

Just some background info, The rifle is a standard Marlin 45/70, 22 inch barrel, half magazine, and going by the serial number built in 2009 (thankfully I got a good one, no warranty outside the US). It has a Williams FP-336 rear peep sight with a fine target disc and a Lyman 17a front peep sight fitted. All loads used Starline cases trimmed to length with a Lee trimming tool, and all rounds were seated to C.O.L. 2.530, the crimp groove of the projectile, and given a firm crimp. All powder charges were weighed as I have found that Trail Boss does not meter well in my powder thrower (standard Lee model).

Using the ADI/IMR load work up data for Trail boss, after measuring the case capacity with the bullet seated, the max non compressed load was 18 grains. Previous experience with this powder has lead me to believe that max loads can be erratic so I decided that 17 grains would be my max load with this case/projectile combination. Trying to cover as much ground as possible with my available cases I decided that a 4 shot group with each powder/primer combination would have to do.

All groups shot at 50 metres off a sandbag rest. I alternated in between brands of primers, i.e. 4 shots of Remington’s then 4 shots of CCI. The rifle was patched out after every 8 rounds. Group sizes were measured longest edge to edge (in inches) and then .458 subtracted to get a centre to centre measurement. There were a couple of good 3 shot groups with the 4th really blowing the group out, so on the following table, ‘F’ is the whole group and ‘NF’ is not using the flyer to measure the group.

Rem 9 ½ primers

Powder Av vel ES Group size
Charge

14.5 1147 9 0.5
15.0 1170 12 +1.5
15.5 1193 16 1.0 ‘F’ / 0.46 ‘NF’
16.0 1231 19 1.5 ‘F’ / 0.34 ‘NF’
16.5 1242 12 0.8 ‘F’ / 0.25 ‘NF’
17.0 1249 57 0.8 ‘F’ / 0.40 ‘NF’

CCI BR2 primers

Powder Av vel ES Group size
Charge

14.5 1118 10 1.0
15.0 1162 7 2.0
15.5 1200 21 2.5
16.0 1226 5 1.0
16.5 1240 16 1.0
17.0 1252 50 1.5





After doing this test a few things come to mind.

This rifle/powder/projectile combination prefers Remington 9 ½ LR primers to CCI BR2 LR primers. Interestingly a lower priced component works better than the higher priced one.

Around the internet it is suggested that benchrest grade primers are either ‘hotter’ or ‘cooler’ than standard primers, however this data suggests that there is not much difference. I understand fully however that the testing I have done is very limited.

Both the Remington and CCI 17.0 grain load showed a big jump in the extreme spread. I believe that had I tested a 17.5 and 18.0 the ES would have got bigger and the accuracy would have suffered, and possibly the velocities decreased. This is what happened when I was doing similar testing with the 405 grain projectile and near max loads of Trail Boss (in a previous posting).

The ‘Westcast’ lube must work as I could see no visible leading in the barrel after 50 shots.

Low velocity (relatively), cast lead projectiles can give good accuracy, 3 shots in 0.25 at 50 metres without a scope, is nothing to be ashamed off, particularly as I am not a fantastic marksman and my eyes are nearly 40 years old now.

Thank you all for your time, and I would appreciate any questions, comments or suggestions.

Tight groups

Rich
 

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Welcome to Marlin Owners Aussie Rich! Thats some great shooting! Please come and join us in the Team Challange Postal Match! 5 shot group closest to the center of the target for bragging rights! I'd say you have something to brag about there. 100 yards scoped rifle. 50 yards iron sights.

Make sure you read all the rules and use the postal match targets if you do join in the fun!
http://www.marlinowners.com/forums/index.php/topic,86940.0.html

Oh and you would be shooting for Team 45-70! ;D

Join Team 45-70 it cost nothing. http://www.marlinowners.com/forums/index.php/topic,77364.0.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi Lever Addict

Thanks for the welcome, I have just posted to join the Team 45/70, as a long distance member of course... ;D

I have already downloaded some postal match targets, so hopefully I will be able to ''call in some fire from over the pond''

If I have not already said so thank you for a great forum.

regards

Rich
 

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Hi and welcome from Bundaberg, Queensland.
Those Westcast projectiles are really good stuff, I found them to be quite cheap and accurate, the lube (coating is rated to 2200fps for the Gold Match) is really well applied, as you mentioned with the finger nail test.
Normally I cast or use Hornady projectiles but I do like to try what home grown projectiles we have.
Where abouts do you call home?
 

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Thanks Aussie for the work and writeup of your results; I plan to get some 350 ranch dog bullets and load them up with the trail boss for range fun.
 

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aussie rich That's a good test and your right limited so knock yourself out ;D ;D ;D
This is a great forum because of contributions like yours. Pull up a chair and make yourself at home.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hey Guys

Thanks for the replies. Hey Moofy07 I tend to do most of my shooting at a SSAA range at Ripley Queensland. i grew up around there, and the range still feels like home.

Rich
 

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Hi Aussie Rich,
That's some fine shooting, good work. How did you fare with the floods, were you out of the way?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey Moofy

No mate we had no problems with the flood, thanks for asking, but I know a few people who lost everything. Sad times still.
 
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