Question to the DW Supermag Owners


Peter M. Eick
May 9, 2009, 02:40 PM
I was out shooting my DW 357 Supermag today and had some questions for you guys that are more experienced with them. First off the gun was unfired prior to when I bought it and was essentially factory original. Its a Monson with the full lugged heavy barrel Supermag model 40 I believe.

The gun barrel loosened up so I tightened it. Now I can't get it off, so I presume I need to shoot it again till I get it hot and then loosen it. I knew not to torque it much but I guess with an 8" barrel a bit is more then enough. Is it normal for it to loosen up like that? It was tight before.

The grips loosened from the frame. They were also tight at the start but after a while it was rocking. Is this normal?

The front sight loosened up. I am not sure if it were tight but it is now.

Basically is it normal to loosen everything up with only 400 rnds of hot loads? My Ruger Max would take this with only the ejector rod screw loosening a bit.

Great gun, but dang it is heavy. I need to start lifting weights to hold it steady for a long time.

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May 9, 2009, 09:01 PM
I have not had a barrel nut work loose but I've heard of it happening to others and it's considered normal to check the barrel nut for tightness after the first fifty rounds or so. It should be tightened with the gun cold. Should then stay tight. DON"T put any kind of thread lock goop on it. With every thing in good condition, and properly torqued, you should be able to remove it with the gun cold. Warming it up with a few quick shots might make it easier to unscrew. I've never tried that myself.

On the other hand, you might need a tiny bit of goop on the front sight screw.

Grip should stay tight. Does tightening the grip screw help?

Be aware that the Ruger Maximum is chambered for the 357 Maximum while the DW is chambered for the 357 SuperMag, two different cartridges. (Don't ask me why the DW barrel shroud says 357 Maximum, I've never heard an answer for that.) The 357 Maximum is a shortened version of the original 357 SuperMag and will work in a SuperMag same as a 38 Special in a 357 Magnaum chamber.

Peter M. Eick
May 10, 2009, 09:28 AM
Thanks for the tips. Of all of my DW's this is the first one that "stuck". I was not really thinking about it when I tightened it up at the range. I just snugged it when it was hot and that was pretty dumb. I don't use a threadlocker, so I expect that next time I go blasting it will loosen up eventually.

I tightened the grip screw up and it held the rest of the round. I will have to see how it does next time out.

Yes I was aware of the differences. I load for the Max because I have a Ruger so I have to make ammo for both of them to eat. Do you have a line on real SuperMag brass?


May 10, 2009, 10:18 AM
The nominal length for the 357 Maximum case is 1.605 inch vs. 1.610 inch for the SuperMag, not much difference. I have been buying Winchester 357 Maximum empty brass and find that it comes out of the box at 1.610 inch.

The real difference is in the OAL, the SuperMag being .125 inch longer. The original intent was to launch a heaveir than standard for caliber bullet. For the Maximum this means deep seating the bullet which takes up powder room.

Ruger, in spite of Elgin Gate's advice to the contrary, did not want to make the frame window long enough to accomodate the 357 SuperMag. Ruger and Remington viewed the 357 Maximum as something to produce hyper velocities with a lighter bullet, which it did, but they used the wrong powder and the combination led to the erosion fiasco.

How do things go with your Ruger Maximum? I have a friend who has one, but there is a problem with chamber to bore alignment. And you can't send it to Ruger to be fixed, they will confiscate it and offer to replace it with some other Ruger.

Peter M. Eick
May 10, 2009, 01:12 PM
I usually buy remington because I have had a rough time finding winchester. Remington is ok but it splits a lot.

I knew that Ruger made the cylinder too short, just did not understand why.

I have had my Ruger for several years now and shot it a lot. I try to shoot 180's or 158's only and when I can find them 200 grn lead bullets. I tend to load them exclusively with IRM 4227 to avoid the flame cutting problem of ball powders on my Ruger. The Ruger is a good gun and mine is quite accurate when you can figure out how to shoot a single action properly. I find it does heat up a lot so ejecting the brass results in a burnt finger after about 50 rounds of blasting.

All in all I probably like the Ruger better right now because the DW is too heavy. I need to hit the gym to muscle up a bit and then I think the tide will change. The DW is a better gun overall.

May 10, 2009, 01:46 PM
Wow I never new about 357 supermags as I've always shot 357 maximums from my DW,is this ok to do?

Peter M. Eick
May 10, 2009, 06:05 PM
Yes, the DW is designed for the real "supermag" load and the RW is designed for the "Max" load.

As was pointed out above, the SuperMag is bigger then the Max and thus the Max can be fired in both.

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