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As to the Indians reloading rimfire ammo, it was of greater caliber than .22, most often .44 for the Henry/Volcanic rimfire rifles and .56 for the Spencer rifle and used blackpowder rather than smokeless. There were many others but those were popular. The sulphur from match heads was soaked off, added to other substances I can't remember off hand, and then spun by hand in an attempt to get the new "priming mixture" into the unused portions of the rim. This was a rather crude and often unsuccessful try but when ammo is not available in any other fashion one makes do as best as possible. I heard of a device from Australia that would spin the case to push the primer into the rim but have never seen one. It wasn't very popular as the price of 22LR ammo is still pretty cheap, even over there. In addition, I am not aware of any priming material nor appropriate powders for sale to the public available for rimfires. I am also curious where you got "reloading dies" for the 22LR? I haven't heard of such a thing let alone seen one though I haven't checked out the custom die makers in a while. I have seen dies for a 17 rimfire that is similar to the 17 Mach II but used unfired cases. I also think you may have trouble finding appropriate bullets as the 22 short, long and LR use a "butt healed" type of bullet that is rather different than the typical bullets used in other 22 caliber guns, especially the centerfires. Again, I haven't seen these bullets offered on the open market though there are custom mold makers who would be glad to make one for you, for a price.
With what is on the market and the effort one would have to go through even if reloading rimfires is possible, it would be easier and more cost effective to find a suitable round already made. Federal, Eley, PMC, even Wolf, as well as others produce very accurate 22LR target loads. With a little seaching you should find what you are looking for.
 

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I second wired's suggestion, let me know where and when you're going to the range so I'll not be there. Powder is not powder and what is safe for a 22LR may not be safe to use in another cartridge and vice versa. The bullet used in the 22 LR is unique to it also so another .22" bullet will likely not work as desired. Before you start to reload, read a good reloading manual until you understand what it is saying and not what you think it says. Help from an experienced reloader is another good idea for a first timer.
 

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I told everything I know of the old way of reloading rimfire cartridges. I think I got that info from a paragraph in an article by Mike Venturino, Sam Fadala, or Phil Spangenburger(sp) though it could be from a historical tome as I read enough of them. It was a while back so I am not certain it was any of them for sure. I also seem to recall some talk of this at a "buckskinner rendezvous" but didn't pay it no mind at the time as I thought the person didn't know what they were talking about. When I read the paragraph later, I realized I was the idiot. If there are any rendezvous events in your area, check them out. You may get a lead on the info you are looking for and in any event, there are a number of interesting tidbits of information as well as characters.
 

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I wish the DIY writers would actually try what they write but I guess they are too busy writing suppositions so they can fleece others.
A rimfire cartridge's brass is of a very weak alloy which is necessary for the firing pin to ignite the primer material. Reusing the case would not be a good idea as the old firing pin strike would be even weaker and could lead to a case failure which rimfires are not really designed to protect aginst. From a conversation I had with a ballistician from one of the Big Three civilian ammo manufacturers, this was a serious flaw with the reloading set from Australia I mentioned earlier. I also don't see how one could punch the old mark out, the case mouth is rather narrow and the angle to it is rather steep.
As I've mentioned many other times, the bullet shape for the 22LR is very different than anything else on the market though I guess a custom mold could be made though the price may be rather steep.
Thirdly, I don't know if there is a powder that can be safely used to reload a 22LR, my acquaintance said their powder is not available in canister form. That doesn't mean there isn't a powder that can be used, just that the one they use isn't distributed to the public.
I also don't know of any dies available for the 22LR though Hornady will make custom dies; prices start at $80.
Lastly, the priming mixture and application would be a problem. Rimfire priming material is mostly potassium chlorate with small amouts of antimony sulfide, copper sulfo-cyanide, and traces amounts of other items. The largest single component (45%) is crushed glass to create the friction to ignite the priming material. TNT has not been used in rimfires as it creates too high of pressures. TNT was used in rifle primers but they were phased out of usage of those was back around 1960.
Applying the priming mixture is not likely possible with a brush as it is too thick to reach into the rim. Manufacturers have to liquify the compound and spin it rather quickly to do so.
Seeing all of this, one can understand why reloading rimfires is not done and am surprised they can sell 22 ammo so cheaply.
 

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Lighten up gwp, it is not uncommon for some people to become overly drawn in to the possibilities of an idea when they are rather naive in the subject. Boyish enthusiasm should not be stifled, only directed. These actions are sometines hard on grizzled veterans of the range, we have settled into our idiosyncracies and don't like having our world shaken, let alone stirred. The asking of questions and (hopefully) correct, reasonable, and insightful replies help build the new person's knowledge of what is or isn't possible, practical, and/or reasonable. It is good one asks questions and waits for answers before attempting a potentially dangerous or hazardous endeavor rather than jumping off into experimenting on their own.
 
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