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Anybody reloading .55 Boys?


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Hello everyone!

I'm currently looking at a Boys Anti Tank rifle in the original .55 caliber but one thing is holding me back, I want to be able to shoot this thing! I see original ammo is going for around 30 bucks a round which is just too much for how often I would like to be able to fire it. I've been doing some research and found that .50 BMG brass can be fire formed to .55 case dimensions and that the belt around the rim isn't really necessary. I see CH4D sells reloading dies for .55 boys but I have no idea where to get projectiles. Is there anyone out there who reloads for their .55 Boys rifle? If so I would be very interested in hearing how you do it!

Thanks! -Mike

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Yeah I'm eyeballing another one that's been converted to .50BMG right now but I feel owning one in the original .55 caliber is more correct and collectible. I don't mind jumping through the NFA hoops or investing in reloading equipment but if I'm not going to be able to easily source projectiles it might not be worth the effort. From what I've read there isn't a very big difference between shooting the two calibers.

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I really dont think the 50 conversion hurts value, i actually think it raises the value.. Ammo is easily and cheaply available, and if you need to sell quickly no waiting for paperwork. That being said, if there was plenty of cheap 55 boys ammo around, then yes original is better. There is a very super small market for guns where ammo is extremely hard or exspensive to get. I will tell you this, i have shot alot of 50s, and the boys kicks the worse.  

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  • 2 weeks later...

 If your sole purpose is to shoot one , .50 brng is the way to go but consider at one time it was no harm or loss to convert a BOYES to .50 US. that was b-4 all the "other" non NFA .50 firearms hit the street. after that it became a loosing proposition. the last 2 examples I sold was a travesty less than $3k?  the last 2 original examples I watched at auction were just under $7k.

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  • 4 months later...
  • 1 month later...

A full set of CH 4D dies for the 55 Boyes to use 50 cal brass or original brass run around $2500.00 and since it is a shorter round you cannot just use your 50 BMG set. 

I have turned projectiles in the past out of A360 Brass..  Found the forming- cleaning primer pocket and time to make the projectile NOT worth it compared to pulling original brass and reusing the bullet with 5010 powder. To save the brass annealing is a priority or splits will happen. Never a good idea to shoot anything using Cordite as a propellant especially stuff built in 1937-38..unstable as hell...  As a cool note the Boyes primer is very neat looking as it detonates the powder in the center of the charge with a primer snorkel.

 

Davis

Edited by mstrmstr
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  • 1 month later...

I know DocAV has reloaded for 55, using .50 BMG cases and a belt soldered on. From what I remember talking to him it is a very labour intensive process, then there is the issue of projectiles. Recently a friend of mine picked up a Boys Mk.I that was expertly converted to .50 BMG, and it is fun to shoot. Especially since you can easily get all sorts of interesting projectiles. 

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