Saturday, November 21, 2020

Of interest to those who reload .38 Special


At 8:00 EST, Nov 21, 2020 Roze Distribution has 37 boxes of 500, swaged, 158 grain, 0.357 semi-wad cutter, hollow-point bullets for $51 a box. The price includes shipping.

This bullet is nearly identical to the ones used in The FBI Load for the .38 Special.

I cannot vouch for the BNH of the bullets but assume they are fairly soft. That is, that they are intended for the .38 Special and not .357 Magnum pressures and velocities.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. As I found out, bullets are of no use without primers. As far as I can tell (and I check multiple times a day) there have been NO primers of any maker offered for sale by any wholesaler or retailer in the U.S. for at least six months. Since the major ammo producers have publicly stated that they are not increasing capacity, where are the primers? Keep in mind that ammo producers have long term contracts with the primer producers so their requirements shouldn't impact the retail market.
    If primers were being restocked and instantly sold out, that would be one thing but there has never been any resupply.
    Not even from brands from other countries. Something smells

    1. Reading through what you wrote: I think the pivotal phrase is "not increasing capacity".

      Capacity, in the industrial world, usually means to add production lines or capital equipment (i.e., equipment with a life expectancy of more than one year).

      It is possible to increase production without increasing capacity by adding shifts, adding weekend work and by limiting the number of "change-overs" to odd-ball calibers.

      Suppose Reminchester operates two, 8 hours shifts Monday-through-Friday and produces a range of 400 centerfire calibers/bullet weights. That is 80 hours a week of production time and, conceivably, 40% of that time could be involved in change-overs and verification of product when running the slow-sellers (.35 Remington, .260 Remington, .358 Winchester, .32 H&R, .257 Roberts and so-on.

      There are 168 hours in a week. Running hot hand-offs and Saturdays would be 144 hours a week.

      If this were the time of year when the major companies closed out the odd-ball orders then they would ordinarily be effectively running 60% up-time X 80 hours a week or running the line 48 hours a week.

      If they switched to something like 9mm Luger and ran them for weeks-on-end they might have 144 hours a week of production or three-times the number of primers being consumed per week.

      That does not even consider that the 9mm is an easy round to load and it might conceivably be "fast" to process compared to a .38-40 or .25-35. For one thing, you can move pallets of 9mm pretty quickly without having to worry about them tipping over.

      If primer production was 110% of commercial cartridge production then the ramping up of bullet factories would quickly outpace primer production.

    2. I certainly hope you're right, Joe but I have my doubts. Even during the powder shortage a few years past you could still find powder. Maybe not the exact on you were after but something close enough in burn rate to work. Powder has much longer lead times to manufacture by its very nature.
      Here we don't see even one primer extra - even from other countries such as Canada, Italy, Brazil or Eastern Europe. Those countries do not have the "panic" we are experiencing and should be available.
      Brownell's says that several of these brands are "no longer available". Strange timing eh?

    3. Assuming the supply chain could keep up....

      Record gun sales this year kind of assures a lot of demand for ammunition.

      That should be a no brainer for most companies, no?

  3. They are soft, probably Hornady. I've fired hundreds of them, and in a standard .38 Spl load and just fine for most purposes. Drive them too hard and they lead the bore, but that is to be expected. Keep velocity at 800 fps and you'll be okay.

    1. They are made by Zero Bullets of Cullman, AL. Zero has been around since dirt was invented and make a very good product at a very fair price. Use them often.

  4. Jumped on this. They even had some used brass in stock. Have a friend who does the loading. will trade him for a portion of the completed rounds. He also works part time for a gun dealer so is able to get first dibs on any primers and powder that they receive.

    1. Feral Ferret, Has he said that any primers are actually coming in for him to get first dibs on?


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