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.38 Special +P Load

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Kentucky Shooter, Apr 4, 2010.

  1. Kentucky Shooter

    Kentucky Shooter NRA Life Member

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    I have loaded about 20 .38 special +P loads with 3.8 grains of Bullseye and a 158 grain jacketed soft point bullet and a federal 100 primer loaded to an OAL length of 1.450".

    Most of my data for +P loads lists only cast lead loads in the heavier bullet weights and for lead bullets, 3.8 grains of bullseye appears to be fine, but I can find very little info for .38+P loads for the 158 grain jacketed bullets.
    Would you expect these to be ok, or do you see major red flags?

    Thanks in advance for any advice.
     
  2. ilgunguygt

    ilgunguygt Enslaved in IL

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    I see a heavy bullet with a fast powder. Not a good +p combo. Look fora slower powder. I dont like bullseye with anything close to +p in any caliber.
     

  3. dudel

    dudel

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    Are you sure that's +P load? IIRC, I load a tad bit more Bullseye than that for 38Spl with 148gr HBWC, and it's considered a very light target load. Almost a mouse fart.
     
  4. Kentucky Shooter

    Kentucky Shooter NRA Life Member

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    It is listed in Speer and Lyman manuals as +P with lead bullets----not sure with jacketed. I had someone tell me Hornady in their manual lists over 4 grains of Bullseye with the 158 grain XTP bullet. I feel this load will be ok, but just wanting some other opinions. I am not saying it is the ideal combination but just what I have and trying to make work. With that said, if it is an unsafe load I will be glad to throw 20 rounds in the ditch rather than take a chance.
     
  5. dudel

    dudel

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    I'll have to go look. I just finished a couple hundred rounds of 9mm and 223, so .38Spl is not top of the mind at the moment.

    Don
     
  6. dudel

    dudel

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    Just checked. I'm using 3.0 grs of BE in my target loads. The Hornady and Speer both show 38Spl loads we BE above what you are loading, so, while you are approaching the upper limit, you've not reached it. They should be safe assuming you've used good +P headstamped brass (vs regular 38 Spl brass).
     
  7. fredj338

    fredj338

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    When I want to put together a 38sp+P load, I do NOT reach for the faster powders. Unique or WSF will get you higher vel safer. Depending on whos data you believe, that isn;t even a +P load. The Speer#11 shows 4.3gr-4.9gr. Even then, only 850fps from a 6" bbl.
     
  8. Hydraulicman

    Hydraulicman

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  9. GioaJack

    GioaJack Conifer Jack

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    3.8 of BE isn't even close to a +P loading. My normal 162 grain LSWC load is 3.7 grains that goes out of all my .38's including my old 2 inch model 60.

    Just shot 200 of 'em today... my 9 year old grandson shoots 'em with no problem. Actually a very pleasant load to shoot... little hotter than mouse flatulence.

    Jack
     
  10. WiskyT

    WiskyT Malcontent

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    If you use a soft alloy like I do and you have a short barrel with the newer shallow rifling that SW uses, you will likely get poor accuracy and leading with that much Bullseye. Maybe not. You are right at the point that my loads started leading up and the groups got real bad with my 442. I don't see any problem pressure wise (safety). 3.5 grains of Bullseye works like a dream. Unique or similar powders work like a dream for me in my 442 for +P loads with cast bullets. No leading and tight groups.

    Shoot the 20 you have and see if they group well and leave your barrel clean. If it makes a mess, back off the load or try a slower powder.

    Jack is probably using a better alloy than me and his older gun has better rifling for cast bullets.
     
  11. LoadedTech

    LoadedTech

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    Thats what I use for my XTP's. I'm also showing 4.9g as max so you should be fine to shoot them up. I loaded some BE under a plated FP and liked the 4.3 out of my magnum, what are you shooting them out of?
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2010
  12. Kentucky Shooter

    Kentucky Shooter NRA Life Member

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    I am really experimenting for my new 642, but have other 38/357 K and L frames to shoot them in also.