32 special

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Ross Smith posted this 23 May 2024

I just got a martini cadet rechambered for 32 special. The previous owner used heavy CB loads and I'm more interested in a light( 1200 fps) loads. Data is scarce on this cartridge. I have molds from 165 to 200 grains, all PB, and most are tapered for the 32-40. Ialso have a PP 200 grain non tapered bullet.

Any suggestions?

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MP1886 posted this 23 May 2024

I don't shoot that low of a velocity from my 32 Special so i would suggest 8.0 grains of Unique for a start.  Use that with the 164 grain to 184 grain cast bullet 

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Hornet posted this 23 May 2024

You really need to check out the actual bore and groove diameters as well as the twist rate on that Cadet. If all they did was rechamber an original barrel, you may be in for some unpleasant surprises. The original cadet barrels have a reputation for varying diameters and had a pretty slow twist that might not stabilize anything much over that 165 grainer. I had one in .32-40 that I ended up feeding Lyman 323470's. I was running around 12.0 Gr of 2400 or 13.5 Gr of IMR 4227.

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delmarskid posted this 23 May 2024

I have no experience with 32 special but I believe it is close to a 30-30 case.

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Wilderness posted this 23 May 2024

Ross - the .310 Martini has a 1:20 barrel, which would favour the 120 gn bullet, e.g. #32359.

I use this bullet in .32-40 (1:16) with 5.5 gns Unique or equivalent for about 1050 fps. Best groups have been close to 1" at 50 m for 10, but certainly nothing over 2".

In .30-30 (Marlin Ballard 1:10) I use #311008, 115 gns, with 5 gns Unique for about 1050 again. This is my most accurate load in that rifle. To get the same velocity from a 165 gn bullet I need 5.5 gns Unique (an extra 1/2 gn).

Taking a punt, I 'd say 6 gns Unique should get you a subsonic load in .32 Special with the 120 gn bullet. With the 170 gn bullet you might need a change of powders for a little more velocity.

That said, in .32-20 (1:20 twist) I could never get best goups at subsonic with #311008. It needed about 1250 to perform in that twist. If the 1:20 Cadet pulls the same trick, you might need as much as 8 gns with the 120 gn bullet, and even more to get the 170 gn bullet up to where it's happy.

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Ross Smith posted this 23 May 2024

Thanks all. I just got back from the range and all those heavy tapered bullets were side ways at 50yds. So I need to get a shorter bullet. The twist I got was 1:19 and the 314- and 320+ was as close as I could measure the odd number lands and grooves. No wonder the previous owner was pushing bullets at 1800-2000 fps.

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linoww posted this 5 weeks ago

I'll second the 32359 design, it's quite an accurate little bullet in many .32 calibers run about 1200 fps

"if it was easy we'd let women do it" don't tell my wife I said that!

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Ross Smith posted this 4 weeks ago

I tried 8grains of unique and a 125 grain bullet. Good accuracy and mild recoil.

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