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Shappy "Premium" lead bullets set a high reloading standard.

Shappy "Premium" Lead Bullets Set A High Reloading Standard

Throughout the years, we have seen several handbooks and manuals about casting lead rifle and handgun bullets, and it's a lead pipe cinch that many of your customers have never read one page of any of them. Much casting is being done on a hit-and miss, haphazard basis by chaps who firmly believe that they are mechanically inclined and capable of handling anything without having to read instructions or have anybody tell them anything. We've all met them at ranges and in gravel pits, and ain't none of 'em hit a thing.

Perhaps many of them are just bum shots. I don't know. But I do know that lead bullets offer tremendous opportunity for gun/load error. For the casting process and equipment can indeed turn out shabby, imbalanced bullets which simply couldn't group worth shucks even if they were fired by a master marksman through the finest target gun ever built.

Before lead bullets will shoot tight groups, and do so consistently, the equipment and casting technique must be refined. That's the step taken by Larry Shappy, a relatively new name in the lead bullet business: he's refined his equipment and technique to produce some of the finest cast bullets I've yet reloaded and fired. Thus, if you've got customers who would like to experiment with lead bullets made to a higher standard, think about Larry Shappy bullets. He's a newcomer, but his products have given me some of the best performances I've yet gotten from my S&W M52-2 and my .280 Remington. Yup, he's casting both rifle and handgun stuff with a mind to silhoutte shooters and bull's-eye punchers.

What does Shappy do that other lead bullet suppliers don't? He apparently pays greater attention to detail, which is the difference between just another bullet and one that has enhanced grouping potential. From what I have learned, Shappy had a machinist carefully rework his molds so that the bullet's base will be at a perfect right angle to its longitudinal axis, so that the sprue is cut off perfectly and doesn't upset the individual bullet's balance, and so that air is vented off as the lead rises in the mold. This is accomplished by surface grinding the mold's upper surface, by adjusting the sprue plate for a perfectly flat fit on the surface, and by having minor vents cut into the bottom of the sprue plate to relieve trapped air. Shappy believes that any bullet base angle that isn't 90 degree to the longitudinal axis can be inaccurate.

Beyond this, Shappy has established uniform ladle travel and worked certain other refinements into his casting, sizing, and lubricating. The one's I've been shooting in .38/.357 and 7mm look like perfect pills and shoot that way.

I've spoken with Shappy by phone, and he's interested in gaining some dealer outlets. Dealer discounts are in the works. His line, as this is being written, runs from 57-grain .22-cal. stuff to 530-grain .58-cal. slugs. Between those extremes are lead bullets for the .30 calibers, 9mms, the .38-55, .38-40, .41 and .44, plus the .45s. A price list awaits. If there is a "premium" lead bullet available, this is it--at least in my humble experience.

Expansion Of Rifles For

Weatherby Magnums

Something very interesting that is going on is the expansion in the number of rifles suddenly being chambered for some of the Weatherby Magnums. Winchester began with the .300 Weatherby Magnum a couple seasons back, and this year is following with the .270 Weatherby Magnum in the Model 70. Remington is making the M700 Classic in .300 Weatherby Magnum, not to mention loading Remington brand ammo for it, and even Weatherby has loosened up and will have the lower-priced Vanguard available in .300 and .270 Weatherby Magnums for 1989.

What all this means, of course, is that the Weatherby jugs are coming into the range of Mr. Average's wallet, and there should be some added interest in reloading these numbers. I have a friend who dotes on the .270 Weatherby as a hardhitting, long-range rig without the recoil of the vaunted .300 Weatherby. With the new trend toward 140-grain Hornady and Sierra bullets in the .270 caliber, the .270 Weatherby Magnum may be coming into its second phase of popularity. Frankly, I would tend to favor this cartridge over the .264s because of the .270 Weatherby's slightly larger (hence more efficient) bore.

A dealer wouldn't be wrong in pointing out these Weatherby chamberings to customers who are shopping for magnums. Indeed, the less expansive availability of Weatherby chamberings (which were formerly restricted to the higher-priced Weatherby Mark V) can also help expand your reloading sales. These rounds gulp powder, but reloading them is still far less expensive than buying factory rounds. Recommend to beginners that they consider powders like IMR-4350, IMR-4831, and IMR-7828; Hodgdon H4350, H-4831, and H-870; Hercules Reloder 22; and Accurate Arms #3100 and #8700. Federal 215 primers were developed specifically with the Weatherby cases in mind. And for bullets, you wouldn't be wrong in recommending the premium, controlled-expansion stuff to mitigate against fragmentation on those high-impact collisions. Indeed, high-performance cartridges are at their best with high-performance components. That, too, is a point you should score with your customers.

Scot Powder Introduces Its

New Pearl Scot

By the time you read this, a new Scot poweder should be on hand. This is Pearl Scot, a double-based disc-type propellant made in Scotland and distributed stateside by the relatively new Scot Powder Company of Wilmington, Delaware. As I mentioned in past columns, Scot's selling point is that their powders are made from nitrocotton, alias guncotton, rather than wood-derived nitrocellulose; for it is maintained that cotton is a more uniform product than wood and, consequently, cotton will therefore be more uniform as a propellant. Pearl Scot is a blend of nitrocotton and glycerol trinitrate plus a graphite coating. The burning rate of these Scot powders is controlled by the amount of air in each particle, not by a chemical deterrent; hence, it is further argued that the Scot fuels burn cleaner.

PHOTO : These new custom hard-cast bullets range from a 9mm to a 58 cal. 530-gr. minie ball. They were specially developed to provide high accuracy at a low cost. There are 28 calibers and designs of bullets available from Larry Shappy.
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Title Annotation:includes related articles
Author:Zutz, Don
Publication:Shooting Industry
Date:Apr 1, 1989
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