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Is anyone reloading 22 WCF ?
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December 17, 2020 - 6:18 pm
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Looking for somebody with a bit of experience with this cartridge.

Questions:

1-Are you using trimmed and sized hornet brass.  I believe there is a .006″ difference in rim dia. Have you had to reduce the rim?

2-What bullet mold are you using for the 45 grain .228 bullet?

3-Are you using Black powder or have you found a suitable smokeless replacement?  If so would you be willing to share your loading data?

I believe factory ammo was running in the 1550 F.P.S. area, really not much better than a 22WRF. Don’t know if it’s worth the investment in loading gear to play with this or just be content with the 2 Hornets I already have…….

TIA

Erin

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December 17, 2020 - 6:47 pm
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Erin,

What rifle are you intending to shoot it in ?  22 Hornet brass should work with little or no rim size reduction necessary.  Both 2400 and Lil’Gun smokeless powder are decent powders.  If you are shooting it in a Winchester Single Shot rifle, you can load it to the same specs as the 22 Hornet. Chuck has recently began working on reloading the 22 WCF.

Bert

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December 17, 2020 - 7:00 pm
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Erin Grivicich said
Looking for somebody with a bit of experience with this cartridge.

Questions:

1-Are you using trimmed and sized hornet brass.  I believe there is a .006″ difference in rim dia. Have you had to reduce the rim?

2-What bullet mold are you using for the 45 grain .228 bullet?

3-Are you using Black powder or have you found a suitable smokeless replacement?  If so would you be willing to share your loading data?

I believe factory ammo was running in the 1550 F.P.S. area, really not much better than a 22WRF. Don’t know if it’s worth the investment in loading gear to play with this or just be content with the 2 Hornets I already have…….

TIA

Erin  

Erin, I have started the load development process but am not happy with my first firings.  I buy my bullets from the Bullshop.  I use trimmed and fire formed Hornet brass.  I fire form in the chamber.  I am not aware of any rim issues.  The amount you trim for the OAL is so insignificant I don’t know if it is even necessary.  Using 4 grs. of Unique produced too much pressure and the shots were wild.  I did not use a filler.  I need to use my chronograph and get the FPS down to around 1500.  I’m not sure what it is now? 

My next attempt will be the same load but use a filler.  I am also considering using IMR 4227.  This is just a thought, using about 4.5 grains. Loading data for this round is nowhere to be found.  The only die maker is CH4D.  They took 18 months to make a set for me.  By then I had already shot my first loads.

Fire form the case, then use a tapered punch to flare the mouth, load primers and powder, seat the bullet.  The Savage high power shoots the same diameter bullets so you could use the expander from one of these.  I forget now what seater die I used?  It may have been a Hornet?  Any thing that can press the bullet in without touching the case.   The 22 WCF neck is a larger diameter and the shoulder is blow further out than the Hornet.  The OAL did not change after 2 firings.  If you buy CH4D dies expect case damage the first time you try to use these.  I have a couple of sets and they do NOT set up the same as the other couple dozen sets I have.  Start further out than normal and gradually work in.  I also changed their expander to one from the Savage.  I had to change the expander in my 45-75 set too.  I don’t like crushing cases.

Hornet data is too hot.  At least 500 to 1000 FPS faster.  I’m sure my highwall can take the pressure but my rifling won’t stabilize the bullet.  Maybe I should try a jacketed Savage bullet?

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December 17, 2020 - 7:50 pm
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Chuck,

What bullet weight are you using?  I sincerely doubt that any original 22 WCF barrel will stabilize a bullet weighing more than 50 grains.  Per the information I have, the factory twist rate for the 22 WCF was 1:20.

Any Winchester Single Shot rifle in sound shape can handle 22 Hornet pressures with ease.  In the 1930s, Winchester made 22 Hornet replacement barrels specifically for the Single Shot rifles.

Bert

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December 17, 2020 - 7:58 pm
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Chuck said Loading data for this round is nowhere to be found.  The only die maker is CH4D. 

Pre-war Ideal Handbooks have it, list 3.4 g Unique, so you were close.  Other powders are listed, but they’re obsolete.  For less money than CH4D charges, pretty sure you can buy an Ideal tong tool, or Lyman 310 tool, on ebay.  Not going to find one overnight, but if the alternative is waiting 18 months, I’d start looking.     

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December 17, 2020 - 7:59 pm
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Bert H. said
Erin,

What rifle are you intending to shoot it in ?  22 Hornet brass should work with little or no rim size reduction necessary.  Both 2400 and Lil’Gun smokeless powder are decent powders.  If you are shooting it in a Winchester Single Shot rifle, you can load it to the same specs as the 22 Hornet. Chuck has recently began working on reloading the 22 WCF.

Bert  

Bert,

I’m looking at an 85 (well worn with decent bore-his description) the guy is asking $400, I have not actually seen the rifle yet. Good to know you can bump the pressure up to hornet standards, that opens a plethora of loading data. I don’t know what the twist rate for a 22 WCF was but once determined that will give good guidance for bullet selection, I’m guessing the jacketed 75 grain from Hornady won’t come close to stabilizing. I’ve got to look the rifle over and see what he’s got before I get too carried away. Just wanted to do some preliminary homework on the cartridge.

Erin

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December 17, 2020 - 8:07 pm
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Erin,

1:20 twist rate… nothing heavier than 50 grains is going to stabilize.

Bert

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December 17, 2020 - 8:12 pm
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Chuck said

Erin Grivicich said
Looking for somebody with a bit of experience with this cartridge.

Questions:

1-Are you using trimmed and sized hornet brass.  I believe there is a .006″ difference in rim dia. Have you had to reduce the rim?

2-What bullet mold are you using for the 45 grain .228 bullet?

3-Are you using Black powder or have you found a suitable smokeless replacement?  If so would you be willing to share your loading data?

I believe factory ammo was running in the 1550 F.P.S. area, really not much better than a 22WRF. Don’t know if it’s worth the investment in loading gear to play with this or just be content with the 2 Hornets I already have…….

TIA

Erin  

Erin, I have started the load development process but am not happy with my first firings.  I buy my bullets from the Bullshop.  I use trimmed and fire formed Hornet brass.  I fire form in the chamber.  I am not aware of any rim issues.  The amount you trim for the OAL is so insignificant I don’t know if it is even necessary.  Using 4 grs. of Unique produced too much pressure and the shots were wild.  I did not use a filler.  I need to use my chronograph and get the FPS down to around 1500.  I’m not sure what it is now? 

My next attempt will be the same load but use a filler.  I am also considering using IMR 4227.  This is just a thought, using about 4.5 grains. Loading data for this round is nowhere to be found.  The only die maker is CH4D.  They took 18 months to make a set for me.  By then I had already shot my first loads.

Fire form the case, then use a tapered punch to flare the mouth, load primers and powder, seat the bullet.  The Savage high power shoots the same diameter bullets so you could use the expander from one of these.  I forget now what seater die I used?  It may have been a Hornet?  Any thing that can press the bullet in without touching the case.   The 22 WCF neck is a larger diameter and the shoulder is blow further out than the Hornet.  The OAL did not change after 2 firings.  If you buy CH4D dies expect case damage the first time you try to use these.  I have a couple of sets and they do NOT set up the same as the other couple dozen sets I have.  Start further out than normal and gradually work in.  I also changed their expander to one from the Savage.  I had to change the expander in my 45-75 set too.  I don’t like crushing cases.

Hornet data is too hot.  At least 500 to 1000 FPS faster.  I’m sure my highwall can take the pressure but my rifling won’t stabilize the bullet.  Maybe I should try a jacketed Savage bullet?  

Thanks for sharing your findings Chuck, With Bert’s input of using Hornet data I believe I would lean towards using cast bullet data for the cartridge. What bullet weights were offered from the Bullshop in .228? (jacketed or cast?) I believe a 40-45 grain cast would be best. I’ve found with my model 92’s that if they were built in the black powder era I have not had much luck with jacketed bullets. They all shoot soft cast very nicely.

Erin

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December 17, 2020 - 8:15 pm
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Bert H. said
Erin,

1:20 twist rate… nothing heavier than 50 grains is going to stabilize.

Bert  

Thanks for confirming Bert!

Erin

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December 18, 2020 - 4:53 pm
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Well, I ended up passing on the rifle, his definition or well worn with a decent bore was a more than generous description………

 

Erin

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December 18, 2020 - 4:57 pm
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As is often the case….

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December 18, 2020 - 5:07 pm
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Erin Grivicich said
Well, I ended up passing on the rifle, his definition or well worn with a decent bore was a more than generous description………

Well, for 400 bucks…  However, the action alone (LW, I presume) is probably worth about that.

But look on the bright side–if it had been worth buying, you’d now be facing the aggravation of finding bullets & loading tools!

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December 18, 2020 - 5:23 pm
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Clarence makes a good point. The complete center fire action is worth at least $400. Put a new barrel on it in 22 Hornet (reamed for the K-Hornet), and you would be back in business, with a real fun shooter!

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December 18, 2020 - 6:17 pm
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Bert H. said
Chuck,

What bullet weight are you using?  I sincerely doubt that any original 22 WCF barrel will stabilize a bullet weighing more than 50 grains.  Per the information I have, the factory twist rate for the 22 WCF was 1:20.

Any Winchester Single Shot rifle in sound shape can handle 22 Hornet pressures with ease.  In the 1930s, Winchester made 22 Hornet replacement barrels specifically for the Single Shot rifles.

Bert  

45 grains.  But I must be a little too fast since it is shooting wildly.  Pressure, like I said isn’t the problem but the increase FPS is.  The bore is excellent.

clarence said

Chuck said Loading data for this round is nowhere to be found.  The only die maker is CH4D. 

Pre-war Ideal Handbooks have it, list 3.4 g Unique, so you were close.  Other powders are listed, but they’re obsolete.  For less money than CH4D charges, pretty sure you can buy an Ideal tong tool, or Lyman 310 tool, on ebay.  Not going to find one overnight, but if the alternative is waiting 18 months, I’d start looking.       

Thanks Clarence.  I have some Ideal books but my oldest is 1951.  I have never heard about the Ideal tong tool or the Lyman 310. 

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December 18, 2020 - 6:19 pm
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Erin Grivicich said
Well, I ended up passing on the rifle, his definition or well worn with a decent bore was a more than generous description………

 

Erin  

Too bad.  Once figured out this gun would have been a fun shooter.

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December 18, 2020 - 6:29 pm
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Bert H. said
Clarence makes a good point. The complete center fire action is worth at least $400. Put a new barrel on it in 22 Hornet (reamed for the K-Hornet), and you would be back in business, with a real fun shooter!  

It’s just not one my have to have items, I’ve got a (bad word coming) RUGER #1 and a 77 in hornet, both shoots lights out so my falling block single shot and bolt rifle in Hornet is covered. If it was in good shootable condition it would of been a different story. I’ve got about 15 “project” rifles backed up and don’t need to add to the pile.

It was not just the barrel, the furniture was not much more than something to toss into the wood stove, it would of been a major redo…. A far cry from scrounging up some loading dies and bullets.

Thanks for all the input guy’s, The learning never stops…….

Erin

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December 18, 2020 - 6:46 pm
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Erin Grivicich said

It’s just not one my have to have items, I’ve got a (bad word coming) RUGER #1 and a 77 in hornet, both shoots lights out so my falling block single shot and bolt rifle in Hornet is covered. If it was in good shootable condition it would of been a different story. I’ve got about 15 “project” rifles backed up and don’t need to add to the pile.

It was not just the barrel, the furniture was not much more than something to toss into the wood stove, it would of been a major redo…. A far cry from scrounging up some loading dies and bullets.

Thanks for all the input guy’s, The learning never stops…….

Erin  

I know your feelings.  I don’t have any project guns but I do have at least 6 cartridge projects going on right now.

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December 18, 2020 - 6:56 pm
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Chuck said

I know your feelings.  I don’t have any project guns but I do have at least 6 cartridge projects going on right now.  

Chuck,

I do not know about Erin, but you are a R.O.F. and have plenty of time for “projects”.  Those of us who have yet attained R.O.F. status are limited on the number of projects we can take on.

Bert – Not yet a R.O.F. but working on it…

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December 18, 2020 - 7:04 pm
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Chuck said

Thanks Clarence.  I have some Ideal books but my oldest is 1951.  I have never heard about the Ideal tong tool or the Lyman 310.

 

   The 310 is the modernized version of the tong tools that established the Ideal Co., & are still popular, though Lyman stopped making them yrs ago.  Lyman only got into the reloading business by buying out Ideal.  You ought to have at least a reprint of one of the pre-WW1 Ideal Handbooks, though an original can be bought for $30-40. I have several, as of course they were revised every few yrs.–they were the manuals all reloaders used before the bullet companies began putting them out. Or search ebay for the 310s to see what they look like. 

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December 18, 2020 - 7:38 pm
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Bert H. said

Chuck,

I do not know about Erin, but you are a R.O.F. and have plenty of time for “projects”.  Those of us who have yet attained R.O.F. status are limited on the number of projects we can take on.

Bert – Not yet a R.O.F. but working on it…  

Okay, I will confess….. 12/31/2020 is my last day of employment and I will officially become an R.O.F………  Now if they will only open up the gun shows here so I can get “back to work” Wink !

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