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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Many of us reload and shoot a wide variety of obsolete or wildcat cartridges, are they a common sense approach for a SHTF gun? About 4 years ago, I started shooting .38-55 in competition, this cartridge was first produced in the 1880's. I've manage to purchase about 350 pieces of brass for my rifle. I know 4 other shooters in town that cast .38-55 bullets, but I choose to buy them commercially in a pack of 1000 bullets from one of 2 places that they are available in Canada. The primers I use are standard Large Rifle primers and I use Unique as my propellant which is readily available.

Most of my brass is loaded at all times but if the balloon ever went up and I chose that rifle, I would be limited to the 350 rds of .38-55 that is immediately available. If you had to leave your primary residence, what if you couldn't take your reloading kit? What if you couldn't take your dies? What if you couldn't get the specialty bullets that you require? What if you couldn't get the specialty brass that you require? Nobody knows what circumstances that would happen if the balloon ever went up, but I would prefer to have the opportunity to utilize any ammunition that I come across. I'll stick with standard calibers. Comments?
 

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I love the old calibers and have reloaded for the 38-40 for several years. Have shot them in both a 1902 Colt SAA and an original Win saddle ring 1892. The 45-70 is my other old caliber. 38-40 is for fun and history. The 45-70 is for hunting and challenge. Even when I'm hunting a good Colt 45acp and a 308 or 223 are always at hand for unexpected duty. Would never carry one of the old calibers for serious duty. 9mm, 45acp, 308 and 223 are the only way to go.

RIKA
 

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sounds like your fond/good

with that 38-55, if that was what i ended up with when the balloon went up!


300+rounds would be plenty[in my view]

.22rimfire will be the most common rounds encountered [scavenging/foraging] buildings,homes,barns[vacant] in the long term .


inmho the 5.56mm round/weapon is the choice, hell! if it goes long term
'stone age' [20+years] who ever has a bow/arrow might be BOSS[plague]


just my narrow view!


thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I enjoy shooting the .38-55 and in the last 4 years I've probably put 4,000 rds of it down range. It's fun. If I was stuck with it as an only firearm, I could do my part. But if the balloon ever went up, and I was separated from my ammo, the rifle would have only limited use, until the ammo ran out. Using a .308 there is always, if nothing else a possibility of scrounging up some ammo. There are numbers of obsolete or wildcat cartridges including .356 TSW & 9x23mm that fit into this same area!!
 

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Depends.
Depends on:
1.) What do you call an obsolete caliber? .38-55? yes. .45-70? Maybe. It's old, but it's also one of the best sellers, so is it really obsolete? The ATF thinks the .30-06 is obsolete. Most hunters would disagree, not to mention Garand users.

2.) Do you REALLY think you'll be doing all kinds of combat post-shtf?
That really depends on
A.) Do you think it's even a remote possibility that we'd regress to the late 19th century overnight?
B.) Do you really think people are going to be like stupid and go looking for firefights whereever they go?

I think the answers are:
1.) You have to answer yourself. I would say if you can go into any gun shop or sproting goods store in your area and find at least a few boxes of ammo, it's not obsolete.

2.) If for whatever reason you think you'll be doing a lot of fighting, stick to common calibers, full stop, go no further.

I'd recommend sticking with the .223, 7.62x39mm, .308 or .30-06 for a main rifle, not only for "ammo foraging" purposes, but for cheap availability of surplus and commercial ammo, and components. You can also carry a Lee Loader (takes up as much room as a regualr die box) and a plastic hammer (like a Lixie). You're most likely to be able to scrounge components for these cartridges (excepting the 7.62x39mm, not much brass available for it), and while you won't make great ammo, you7 can make good ammo with the Loader. Just ask a lot of Mosin fans, most guys I know use the Lee Loader exclusively for reloading the 7.62x54mm.

That being said, if shtf, and you can't get back to your stash, and all you have is your cowboy setup, and that's just a few rounds for the scattergun, a few hundred in your 38-55, and a few hundred in a cowboy pistol caliber, can you survive? Yep. People survive ona lot less than that. Just don't be stupid and do things like poach livestock, run TOWARDS gunfire, etc. . .
 

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I think that the term "obsolete catridges" (for civilian purposes, as the military considers the 30-06 obsolete) only applies to rounds which have been replaced by cheaper, more effective rounds. If it uses cordite, it's obsolete, if it's muzzleloading, it's obsolete. If it's black powder, it's obsolete. This is why they've been replaced by metllix cartridges uses smokeless powder. Simply because something's old (45-70, 30-06, 30-30), doesn't mean it's no good, and just because somethings new, doesn't make it improved (5.56x45).

Also, just because it's a newer version of something old, doesn't mean it's no longer obsolete (Thompson Omega, Composite Bows). It just means that just because something is obsolete, doesn't mean it's no longer worthy of use, and that there are those who like the style of the old ways, but want something more modern.

Obsolete doesn't mean that something can't do the job required of it, it means that it CAN do the job, but they found something better. The 45-70 Trapdoor rifle replaced the muzzleloading model 1863. Does that mean the 1863 is no longer useful? NO!! It means the trapdoor is BETTER.

A more modern example is the replacement of the 30-40 Krag-Jorgensen Rifle with the 30-45 (30-03) and later 30-06 Springfield. The 30-40 is still one of the better hunting cartridges, just no one uses it.

If it's a wildcat cartridge, it's still a wildcat cartridge, regardless of when it was introduced.













That's alot of rambling on my part, am I still on topic?
 
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