Reloading 28


Dear Technoid,

I’ve recently started shooting a 28 ga and like it enough to consider reloading.

What are your thoughts on reloading 28 ga? That is, in your opinion, are the savings worthwhile, which reloader has the fewest problems and recipes (with components).

Best regards, Bill

Dear Bill,

It just so happens that I’ve been reloading 28 for about that many years. Well, almost. I’ve got a 31.5″ Perazzi MX8/20 28 gauge with an insatiable appetite. I use a MEC “Grabber” 8567. It’s a carousel press with manual advance. The manual advance gives me a little more opportunity to fix goof-ups in progress. That’s the machine I’d recommend.

Though not in 28 ga, I’ve had the chance to use Ponsness Warrens. The 375 single stage is a marvel. Great, great shells, but slow as are all single stage machines. The 800 series is like the little girl with the curl. When all is right, it produces marvelous reloads due to its full length resizing die. But… when things get a little off, it is a nightmare. I also had a Dillon, but it was awful and I ended up running out of curse words. The very nice RCBS Grand doesn’t come in 28. Spolar would be great if you want to spend that kind of money, but then you wouldn’t be reloading to save funds. The MEC is a nice middle of the road machine. It’s easy to work on and produces a fine shell if you use the right components.

I reload mostly Rem of any vintage and the older Win hulls. The old Win hulls are the best, but very hard to come by. The newer hulls were shorter and caused all sorts of problems setting up machines. The very latest Win hulls are supposed to be back to the original length, but I’ve not tried them.

As to the Rem hulls, generally the older the better. I probably shoot my 28 gauge hulls longer than I should. Eventually the STS 28 hull has a nasty habit of separating the brass from the plastic tube at the base and pushing the tube up the barrel. It’s the very dickens to get out. If you keep an eye on incipient cracks, you can catch it before it happens. Most of the other hulls degrade at the crimp.

As to recipes, most 28 shooters use Unique, Universal or Longshot. I’ve tried them all and they are all fine. I think Unique burns coolest so that hulls last longest, but not much more than the others. Unique is the bulkiest, so Rem wads (expensive!) work best. In fact Rem wads are probably best across the board. The old PC wads were also small and worked in everything, but they were temperature sensitive. The Claybuster Win clone wads are fine, but probably best with a low bulk powder as there isn’t much room left over for a really good crimp with Unique and STS hulls. It’s adequate, but not great. You can get all the recipes you want at http://www.Hodgdon.com or http://www.imrpowder.com.

As to economy, use one of the reloading calculators on the ‘net. Enter in your current cost of materials data and the calculator will quickly calculate your cost of reloading. Any data that I give now will irrelevant in the future.

Only you can make the decision as to whether the economies of reloading are worth the time and effort. I sort of enjoy reloading. There is no phone or intercom in my reloading room. I can listen to the radio undisturbed while I custom make loads for my perceived needs.

Best regards,
Bruce Buck
Shotgun Report’s Technoid

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One Response to Reloading 28

  1. Ernie says:

    I’ve used Win 540 for years in 28 gauge target but since it’s discontinuation , Hodgon’s HS 6, being the same stuff, is my fav.

    Enjoy your comments Bruce. Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    Ernie

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