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357 mag question

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Chris Brines, Nov 11, 2012.


  1. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines
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    Sorry if this is a repeat question, but I'm new to reloading and I noticed something about my 357 mag loads (6.7 grains of Unique (max load), regular small pistol primer, and a 158 grain LSWC), compared to the factory loads from Wal Mart (Remington, Winchester).

    The factory loads have MUCH more power, recoil and are much louder. I've never chrono'd my loads, but I'd assume the velocity is much higher, as well as the pressure. Well I shoot 357 mags cause I like a gun that kicks, and one that will put a BIG hole in whatever I shoot (except for paper, obviously).

    Would switching to a magnum powder and a magnum primer give me the "kick" I'm looking for?
     

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  2. F106 Fan

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    You're using 6.7 gr of Unique and Hornady maxes at 5.0 gr while Speer maxes at 6.0 gr. Alliant maxes at 6.0 gr.

    All for the 158 gr LSWC...

    I don't know where you got your data but you're already running pretty hot for a lead bullet.

    You can always go to a jacketed bullet. You won't pick up much velocity but you can dump up to 7.7 gr in the case according to Speer.

    Do not trust my typing! Verify each of the numbers above.

    Richard
     

    #2 F106 Fan, Nov 11, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2012
  3. F106 Fan

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    Given all of the above, are you sure your scale is accurate? Do you have check weights?

    Something is off if your loads seem light while factory seem MUCH more powerful.

    Richard
     
  4. ColoCG

    ColoCG
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    Switching to Mag primers alone would only give a slight increase in velocity if any at all. To achieve maximum velocity and power in the .357 you would need to go to a slower burning powder such as 2400, H110/W296. The last 2 powders require magnum primers. All should accomplish what you are after.

    Personally I have used a larger dose of Unique with the same bullet that you are using. Always work up your loads slowly.
     
  5. WiskyT

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    RCBS shows 7.0 with a 158 lead bullet. His load is not over max. Some manuals, such as Speer and Hornady, limit magnum loads due to the soft, swaged bullets those companies offer. If you go over their max, you won't be exceeding pressure, you'll just get leading and crappy accuracy.

    As to the OP wanting more bang out of his ammo, use a magnum powder like 2400. Your loads are right around 1100fps or so, maybe a touch more. With a max load of 2400, you'll get 100fps more, maybe a little more than that. You'll also get the recoil that goes along with a large dose of slower powder.
     
  6. countrygun

    countrygun
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    Igo with what's been said but I would add that it gets a bit tricky when pushing lead bullets at magnum velocities. It can be done but you have to find a sweet spot btween powder, bullet diameter (actual) and bullet composition. Some of the factors involved are very counterintuitive and it takes either blind luck or some work to do it with both accuracy and without leading problems.
     
  7. SJ 40

    SJ 40
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    Colo CG's advise would be mine as well for your 357 Manglem loads. SJ 40
     
  8. gwalchmai

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    The factory loads are not using 6.7gr of Unique. They're not using Unique at all. If you want to match the factory load you need to chrono it and then select a powder charge that can safely approach that velocity with that bullet.

    Factories don't use off-the-shelf (canister) powder that reloaders buy. They mix their own powder to get the velocity they need. The formulation may change for different lots of the same ammo they load (but the velocity stays the same).

    Then they mix the leftovers and floor sweepings into buckets and sell it to reloaders... :supergrin:

    So why not shoot .45?
     
  9. SARDG

    SARDG
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    When I see posts that say "I've never chrono'd my loads, but...", I think that those load performance deductions are largely subjective conjecture.

    I actually had a chrono before I bought any reloading gear. For $100 (or less for some), they bring load development and comparisons up to something actually meaningful.
     
  10. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines
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    http://www.handloads.org/loaddata/d...=158&type=Handgun&Order=Powder&Source=Alliant
     
  11. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines
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    I have checkweights, and also I put a 158 grain bullet on there, it reads 158 grains. Put a 115 grain bullet on there, it reads 115 grains. etc...
     
  12. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines
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    I don't currently own a 45 but a 45 of some kind will be my next gun. Probably a 1911 but I really do like revolvers, maybe a 45LC Redhawk with 1/2 moon clips for ACP.
     
  13. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines
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    http://www.alliantpowder.com/reload...d=1&weight=158&shellid=28&bulletid=30&bdid=83

    This is from alliants site. My bullets are from Precision Delta (soft lead, if I had known that I'd have not ordered them), but the ones I was using before (and the ones I plan to use when I run out of these), were Friendswood Bullets (hard cast - locally made in Houston).
     
    #13 Chris Brines, Nov 11, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2012
  14. F106 Fan

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  15. gwalchmai

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    I have a .45 LC S&W Mountain Gun. It is sweet, and I have seriously considered having it cut for moonclips. However, everything I read from guys who have done it says that the accuracy in .45ACP suffers due to the bullet jump. OTOH, unless you're going for max power, a dedicated .45ACP revolver can do 75-80% of what an LC can. And moonclips are very cool.
     
  16. F106 Fan

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    That is not the current recommendation from Alliant.

    http://www.alliantpowder.com/reloaders/DetailPrint.aspx?gtypeid=1&weight=158&shellid=28&bulletid=30

    I did find a reference to 7.5 gr of Unique with a very hard cast bullet in "Ken Waters' Pet Loads" page 569. If I was interested in this, I would work up VERY SLOWLY.

    Remember that Handloads.com is a lot like Wikipedia: Anybody can type anything! In fact, one of the 'guest' loads shows 8.0 gr of Unique!

    Richard
     
  17. WiskyT

    WiskyT
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    The current Alliant data is based on using the Speer swaged bullet (very soft). The prior data was based on what is ASSumed to be a cast bullet which is much harder.

    FWIW, my home made bullets are only marginally harder than the Speer's and I run 6.5 Unique all the time with them and get no leading and great accuracy.
     
  18. Chris Brines

    Chris Brines
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    So should soft lead get a lighter or heavier charge? My hard cast lead at 6.7 grains worked fine, great accuracy, and no visible signs of high pressure on the casing. I am getting a little leading with my soft lead though.
     
  19. WiskyT

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    A harder bullet will tolerate heavier charges better than a soft one, particularly with faster powders. Often, a soft bullet is hard enough, and a hard bullet is harder than it needs to be. It's a matter of what is too much for a soft bullet? IME, with Unique, in 357 mag and 158's, you can run a max load with a soft bullet and it should be fine. A max load of a fast powder like Bullseye with a soft bullet will be a disaster, but a hrd bullet it might work okay. With slow powders like 2400, you can definitely use a soft bullet at full power and not have issues. I run a full load of 2400 with my soft bullets and get over 1200fps and no leading.
     
  20. shotgunred

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    First off felt recoil and noise have little to do with "power".
    The best answer for you is going to be to switch your powder to power pistol. It will give you the power, recoil and velocity you are looking for.