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Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your own)

1407 Views 10 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Old Cane
A comment was mentioned that the .38's are cheaper to reload than .45LC; and that's true if you have to buy your bullets. But, if you cast your own the price gets real close real quick. All this assuming you have your cases (and at CAS speeds and pressuresses they do last for a long, long time.)

Cost of primers is a wash, about 2 cents each. The powder differential for me is: .38's just under a cent a round. The .45LC is right at 1.5 cents. This translates to a difference of $6 per thousand.

Now casting costs me almost nothing--OK I do have to pay for the electricity and the .45LC probably uses a bit more lube, but since I get my WW for free--they are actually happy for someone to come and take them off--I figure the bullets are a minor cost for the entire operation.

I enjoy the casting process and it gets the cost per round down to, for .38's about 3 1/2 cents each and the .45LC's come in at about 4 cents; I'd call that just about a dead heat.

p.s. and you get to buy a bunch of new stuff--we'll look at that in a later post
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Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

I can see your reasoning if you cast but one thing you left out is case cost. About $101 for 45 and $70 for 38 new Starline. Not a big diff and you can get them for $70 and $30 or less once fired. It may be a wash also though as the 38s may be able to be used more times than the 45s. Where I would notice a big difference is shooting a more expensive case in 38-40 or 45 S&W is in a rifle as we always seem to lose some in the grass. That's why I would stick with 45 or 38, especially in a bigger shoot where you don't get your brass back but I guess it's a small price to pay if you have fun with it.
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

You're right about the brass. I've had some .38Sp brass for over 10 years. I just keep coming up with more and more of it, and it seems to last forever at the low power range I'm reloading at.
Several of the shooters at my USPSA club don't reload so I usually get theirs.
Some times I go to the local range and they have brass for sale. Something like $20 per K, .40 cal is a bit more pricey but then I don't shoot that. .45LC will be more of a challenge as I don't know anyone who isn't reloading the stuff.
Guess I figure once I had the brass and as it can be reloaded numerous times I felt it wasn't part of the equation but you right, it is
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

I sure don't disagree with ya. Just want ot see if I can get to 100 today. Looks like maybe the end of the week.
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

:) If yuh will stay away from nickel-plated .45 cases they last through many reloads. In CAS a mid-range load doesn't strain the cases. I shoot Bullseye as well as CAS so I load .38 & .45 & the difference is negliable as far as cost is concerned. IMHO :wink:
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

I've been reloading the same brass for over two years now, and on rare occasions, I'll have a case split. I don't think, over the long run, the difference in the price of brass will amount to much.

Butler Ford
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

Can't agree more on the nickle cases. Bought 3000 in 38 and sent them to National Bullet to reload. I didn't notice much until I went to OK and they had a different unlaoding system. I noticed about every 4th case was split. Noticed the same thing when (yikes) practiced out at my house. I was wondering where all those wild shots came from and why some felt like 357 loads. I had eliminated MY reloading practices from the equation. I'll stick with brass from now on.
hey josegrande

If you don't mind, what is your load using Bullseye. I purchased a bunch years ago and have been trying to use it up ever since. Presently I'm using 5.2 grains over a 200 gr lead cast bullet.
Just curious as to how mine stack up with others
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

Have you looked at the man. websites? Alliant and Hogden have a cowboy load section and so does Accurate.
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

they do have suggested powder loads, but I don't seem to find any for Bullseye in .45LC. And since I have a bunch of it, I want to use it before going to another powder.
Costs of .38 vs. .45LC (if you cast your ow

I see what you mean. Go ahead and email them and ask. I did that before they had a 44 load posted for Unique. Got an answer pretty quick. Then I noticed they updated the site right after.
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