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Cyrus Cassidy #45437

Burnside carbine reloading

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Posted (edited)

I just worked a trade for one of these unique Civil War carbines.  It shoots a very odd cartridge, and I discovered that Dixie Gun Works sells the brass ($8.50 EACH!!!!!).  I can cast bullets, so all I need is the right mould.  My only problem is, how in the world does a guy get the bullet into the brass?  If you've ever seen one of these, to say it's weird is a vast understatement.  I can't find any dies for it, and for the life of me I don't know how dies could even work.  So how do I do it?

 

Here is a link so you can see the weird brass:  https://www.dixiegunworks.com/index/page/product/product_id/2534/category_id/338/product_name/KA1201+Burnside+Brass+Case

 

Here is an interesting video about them; he explains the weird brass:  

 

Edited by Cyrus Cassidy #45437
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Try sending a PM to @Clueless Bob. I believe he has one he shoots in Plainsman matches.

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Posted (edited)

I have not loaded for the Burnside for quite some time.  As you know, Dixie Gun Works has the brass cases.  I cast my bullets using a Rapine #556315 mould.  Unfortunately, Rapine went out of business when Ray retired years ago. :(   The latest DGW catalog I have is a 2016, which showed Burnside bullets, catalog #BA0207, which they say are cast from Rapine moulds.  I made my own expander for the mouth of the cases, and a crimp tool to gently squeeze the thin mouth against the bullet.  While I did experiment with Pyrodex "RS", I agree that FFg black powder is a much better choice!  For lube, I'd probably use SPG in the grease grooves.  While I didn't worry about waterproofing the flash hole in the cartridge, I placed a small, thin piece of paper, the diameter of the inside of the case inside the case, over the hole, just to keep the powder from leaking out.  The paper will be ignited by the primer and won't plug up the flash hole.

 

An interesting thing is that when you open the action after firing, the latch will knock the tophat cap off the cone!  Makes it quicker to reload.  The Burnside case seals the breach quite well, even when fouled. Of the breachloaders other than the Spencer, it would be my choice of weapons during the CW. 

Edited by Trailrider #896
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Wow! These carbines aren’t cheap to shoot.

 

Found some bullets.

http://www.ssfirearms.com/proddetail.asp?prod=HCBBUR

 

Found a mold 

http://www.joesalter.com/category/products/Burnside-Civil-War-Single-Cavity-Bullet-Mold

 

Here is a site that makes bullet molds. If you scroll down to 56-345B through 56-450B you’ll see they have a few offerings for the Burnside Carbine.

Accurate Molds

http://www.accuratemolds.com/catalog.php?page=all

 

Hope this helps.

 

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7 hours ago, Steel-eye Steve SASS #40674 said:

I very carefully use a c-clamp to seat the bullet in the case for my Burnside.

What bullet or mould are you using?

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On 4/30/2019 at 10:03 PM, Cyrus Cassidy #45437 said:

What bullet or mould are you using?

At the time I was using either Burnside bullets cast by Dixie, or commercial Buffalo Bal-let’s.

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Posted (edited)

Not sure if you know it, but the Burnside has a progressive twist rifling making a round ball(56cal) an ideal choice.  Bullets will work, but my Burnside loves a round ball.  I usually just press the ball in and haven’t had an issue of it falling out.  I then dip the ball in lube.  I’m working on a way to put the lube under the ball, but life has been busy.

 

Theres a book called “The Burnside Breech Loading Carbine” by Edward A. Hull.  It’s full of information from development, model description, numbers, and loading info.  Pretty much everything you wanted to know and more you didn’t know you wanted to know. 

 

Look at S&S firearms(ssfirearms.com).  They sell brass ($5.25 ea per website I just looked at) and parts for the Burnside.  

 

Another site is Lodgewood Mfg(Lodgewood.com).  Their brass sells for $4.50 and they have nylon cases for .75ea.  They too have spare parts available.

 

Both these folks are great folks to do business with.  I’ve been doing business with them off and on for the past 30+ years and have never regretted any transaction I’ve had.

Edited by Clueless Bob
More info
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16 hours ago, Clueless Bob said:

Not sure if you know it, but the Burnside has a progressive twist rifling making a round ball(56cal) an ideal choice.  Bullets will work, but my Burnside loves a round ball.  I usually just press the ball in and haven’t had an issue of it falling out.  I then dip the ball in lube.  I’m working on a way to put the lube under the ball, but life has been busy.

 

I did not know.  What size exactly?  .560?  I do cast bullets so a mould would be easy to come by.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Cyrus Cassidy #45437 said:

I did not know.  What size exactly?  .560?  I do cast bullets so a mould would be easy to come by.

 

It’s been awhile since I last molded any and have to find and look at it to be sure, but I’m pretty sure it was a .560.  Looking at Lee’s website, which is my mold, there is a .562, so this might be it.

 

Found it and it is the .562 (sku# 90460) mold.

Edited by Clueless Bob
Found my mold corrected spelling, I hope,

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Lots of info on on shooting these carbines in the forum of the North South Skirmish Assn.  

 

Seamus

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