Thursday, April 2, 2015

Naming a bullet company after an infamous Alabama train robber got my attention.

Reuben Houston Burrow (December 11, 1854 - October 9, 1890), better known as Rube Burrow, was a nationally infamous train-robber and outlaw in the Southern and Southwestern United States. During the final years of the American frontier, he became one of the most hunted in the Old West since Jesse James. From 1886 to 1890, he and his gang robbed express trains in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, the Indian Territory and Texas while pursued by hundreds of lawmen throughout the southern half of the United States, including the Pinkerton National Detective Agency. -- Wikipedia citation for Rube Burrow.
I'd like to report on some old business from the Birmingham AGCA show. As I was making my way down the aisles, my attention was grabbed by a small table hawking the wares of a local start-up cast bullet company. Now naming a bullet company after an infamous Alabama train robber was, to say the least, unique. Being a bit of an historian, I knew who Rube Burrow was and it was the memory of the train robber which caused me to stop, ask questions, and to pick up a box of 240 grain pills for the .44 Special/.44 Magnum loading scheduled for later this year. (Yeah, I know, I could have cast them myself and intended to, but I find that lately my time is claimed by other more pressing agenda items.)
I asked one of my reloading buddies who has much more experience than I at pistol shooting and cartridge reloading to give them a look. Here is his report:
They look good. The edges are crisp and sharp and the alloy is clean.
I don’t have a hardness tester so I sacrificed one to science by dropping it on an edge from waist height to the concrete floor. It deformed about like a boolit cast from wheel weights does in the same test so that puts the hardness just about perfect.
I checked three with calipers and they all measured right at .432 and were very concentric (no out of round). The minimum for cast .44 is .430 and the extra .002 will give superior boolit to bore fit and ensure no leading.
I think they will perform well.
The Rube Burrows (no, I don't know how the "s" snuck in there) Bullet Co. is so new they don't have a website yet, but they can be contacted at the email address,


Uncle Elmo said...

There's a lot that goes into a cast bullet shooting accurately without leading, Mike. Bullet and barrel diameter, hardness of alloy, quality and hardness of lube, velocity (pressure), all co-dependent on the other to work efficiently.

Some great articles on the subject have been written by Brian Pearce, who writes for Handloader magazine, among others. He's the Man when it comes to cast bullets in handguns. You can probably find his articles online.

BTW, your linked-to articles this morning were all great, and the story of Reuben Burrow was really interesting. I'd never heard of him before. American History is full of amazing stories.

Thanks for the great work, Friend.

Willorith said...

They left out the apostrophe.

Anonymous said...

I have found that the blue "Crayola" hard commercial cast bullet lube is formulated to be hard enough to remain cosmetically attractive after shipping/handling, not effective in firing!

The stuff that works well in my experience is softer, smears in handling too much to stay "pretty".

THEBigFatPanda said...

Reuben Burrow was a criminal but at least he was a neat, well dressed criminal.

Jeff said...

His grave is marked Rube Burrows,