October 17, 2003, 08:38 PM
The subject of just how much velocity you gain in a given caliber by firing it from a longer barrel has been discussed many times. I thought I would throw out some numbers here since I did some testing an hour ago. All numbers are five shot averages at 15'.
Caliber: 357 Mag/.38 Special
Guns used: Ruger GP-100, 4" Barrel
Marlin 1894C, 18.5" Barrel
Load #1 .357 case, 158 gr. JHP (Remington Bulk), 15.0 gr. AA9
Carbine: 1808 fps
Revovler: 1380 fps
Difference: 428 fps
Load #2 .38 Special case, 158 gr. cast SWC, 3.5 gr. Bullseye
Carbine: 946 fps
Revolver: 763 fps
Difference: 183 fps
Load #3: .357 case, 158 gr. JHP (Remington Bulk), 18.0 gr. Lil Gun
Carbine: 1843 fps
Revolver: 1263 fps
Difference: 580 fps
Load #4: .38 Special case, 158 gr. cast round nose, 7.5 gr. Power Pistol
Carbine: 1484 fps *would not feed though carbine
Revolver: 1132 fps
Difference: 352 fps
I found that kind of interesting. It seems that the slow burning powders make a significant difference when fired through the carbine. Another interesting thing was that the hottest load out of the carbine was the load using Lil Gun, while the hottest load out of the revolver was using AA9.
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October 17, 2003, 09:40 PM
Thanks for the info 444.
October 17, 2003, 10:05 PM
Good work 444!
I guess the slower powders enjoy a much more complete (less wasteful) burn in the carbine .. much better use of gasses. Let me do some math here a minute just outa interest ........
Example #1 ..... 428 fps improvment on the revo's 1380 .... thats 31%. Relative energies at muzzle .... revo = 668 ft lbs. Carbine = 1147 ft lbs. That's an increase of 72% energy!
Example #2 ..... 183 improvement over 763 ..... that's 24%. Relative energies ... revo = 204 ft lbs. carbine = 314 ft lbs. That is an increase of 54%. Classic also .. fast powder .. much less benefit thru longer tube.
Example #3 ....... 580 improvement over 1263 ...... that's 46%!!! Relative energies then .. revo = 560 ft lbs. Carbine = 1192 ft lbs. Increase here of 113% !! This is a classic with the LilGun .. and it's slower burn. Great illustration eh!
Example #4 ....... 352 improvement over 1132 ........ 31% again like example #1, tho that was a mag load. Relative energies then are revo = 450 ft lbs. The carbine = 773 ft lbs. And increase here is 72%.
Well ... an interesting exercise altogether ... and certainly proves something re powders and tube lengths!
October 17, 2003, 10:45 PM
I found that pretty interesting myself. I never knew if it was worthwhile to try and develop loads specifically for the pistol caliber carbine. It seemed like it would be worthwile, now I know it is (at least in this caliber).
I have a few other combos to try out. I have a .45 Colt Winchester Trapper that has been sitting in the safe for years. I shot a lot of ammo though it years ago, but for some reason I haven't touched it in probably at least five years. Then I have some 9mms I can check out. I actually have three 9mm carbines (I can't believe it); AR15, Ruger PC9, and a Hi-Point. Rumor has it that the longer barrel doesn't matter in 9mm. What they heck, I could also try the Sten subgun-I think it has something like a 7" barrel which would put it inbetween the handgun and carbine. I don't know if I could shoot through the chrono with that though.
I don't know why I never tried this before. I have had all these guns for years along with the chrono.
I went out to shoot this evening and got kind of bored and the idea occured to me since I had a number of different loads with me.
October 17, 2003, 10:54 PM
I think the general difference was noted hundred or more years ago.
Whenever rifle and pistol were chambered alike, ammo good for one wasn't good in the other.
Good to see the comparison using more modern cartridges and current powders.
October 17, 2003, 10:55 PM
I'm often way too lazy to take my Chrono - let alone set it up and use it!:rolleyes: But my .357 load is a gas check 158 Lyman cast swc over 14 grns of Vit N-110 .. good load and not too punishing in handgun .. but thru Win 94 that is one very useful shhoting load. I just gotta chrono this one when i can (oh, time ... where is my spare time!:( ).
The 9mm I think you are right tho .. i may try some tests thru my HiPoint. The round tho is by default a high pressure round and uses pretty fast powders ... so we'd not expect that much benefit I think we'd agree.
I used to have a Stirling (16" tube) carbine ...... and must say tho i doubt velocities went up that radically ... that thing would hold a 9" group at 100 yds ..... lead homeloads. OK, 9" ain't any great shakes but ... relate that to BG and COM .... and you have a still useful tool!
Post any more data you get ..... and IF I get to it sometime later on I'll do same... fascinating subject.
Edit to add .. I don't have a .44 mag carbine (YET!!!!) ...... but this cal would also be interesting to test. In theory . using 2400, N-110, H-110 etc .. we should see great benefots outa the longer tube.
Now i have to think about gettin that 44 carbine . yep ... it is definitely on the list ..:rolleyes: :D
October 17, 2003, 11:05 PM
I bought one of those little Shooting Chronos a few years ago for $49.00 refurbished. I leave it in the truck all the time. It only takes a couple minutes to set it up. I put it on the tailgate to shoot through it.
I don't own a .44 Mag carbine either. I have no reason to buy one, but that has never stopped me before.
Anyone that owns three 9mm carbines has gotta have a screw or more loose. I bought the PC9 for coyote calling in the thick brush (which I never used it for), I bought the AR15 just because I was on a serious AR15 kick ( I think I shot it once or twice), and I got the HiPoint just because I couldn't pass it up; carbine, laser, three mags, and a case of PMC ammo for $75. I have actually shot that one quite a bit. I used to date a girl that loved to shoot that thing. She thought that laser was the greatest. She said, why would anyone want that little light on a gun. I told her to just put the red dot on the beer can and fire. I had to force her into the truck when it got dark. I shouldn't have taken so much ammo with me. The Sten was a super waste of money. I always wanted a machine gun. I had a chance to buy it and had the money on hand. I waited months for the tax stamp, shot it once and said, "who cares ?". I forget I have it most of the time.
October 18, 2003, 02:53 AM
For those of us who don't reload - is there commercial ammunition in pistol calibers with slow burn poweder?
October 18, 2003, 03:08 AM
is there commercial ammunition in pistol calibers with slow burn poweder? Roscoe,
Usually not. Commercial loaders lean towards faster burining powders to reduce costs. If you'll note the above data, it takes around twice as much slow powder to achieve the same velocities. Double the amount of powder used, doubles the cost of a major component.
The Sten was a super waste of money 444,
Look at it as a long term retirement investment ;) 20/30 years from now it'll be worth a pile. Great info BTW. I'd all but talked myself out of a tang sight for my Marlin CowboyII .357. From the looks of it, I may have to get one 'cause that Lil'Gun load shows some 2000 fps potential.
October 18, 2003, 09:52 AM
Rumor has it that the longer barrel doesn't matter in 9mm.I don't know. This guy shows some improvement with factory ammo. I'd bet with handloads you could do much better.
(I added bold emphasis on the carbine to make it easier to read)
Colt Commander (4 1/2" barrel) Marlin Carbine (16 1/2" barrel)
LOAD VELOCITY VELOCITY Difference
115 gr. JHP 1175 fps 1318 fps +143 fps
124 gr. JHP 1098 fps 1292 fps +194 fps
147 gr. JHP 962 fps 987 fps + 25 fps
BLACK HILLS AMMUNITION
115 gr. JHP 1145 fps 1205 fps + 60 fps
124 gr. JHP 1148 fps 1296 fps +148 fps
147 gr. JHP 1017 fps 1047 fps + 30 fps
147 gr. FMJ 930 fps 1050 fps +120 fps
113 gr. JFP 1235 fps 1369 fps +134 fps
The Carbine averaged 107 fps faster than the handgun.
October 18, 2003, 10:32 AM
A load that I really want to try in the .357 Carbine is, 16 grains of Blue Dot under a 110 grain HP. Alliant's website lists this load at 2040 fps out of a 5.6" barrel. I have fired this load out of a 6 1/2" Ruger Blackhawk and actually got like 1980 fps. Out of a carbine, this might be a screamer. Blue Dot shows up on the chart as being one number faster than AA9.
I am going to check the arsenal and see if I have any of those loaded; if so, I will try them today. This is the load I always bring up on this board when people are talking about the .30 Carbine. Why would I want a carbine, when I can get the same velocity, with the same weight bullet in larger diameter from a handgun ? :neener:
In the 9mm, I was always hoping that the carbine would give you enough velocity to really make the 147 grain bullets perform. I have used the 147s out of a pistol and they were ok. I have shot coyotes and even a mule deer with 147s out of a handgun, but you are always thinking, if only I could have a couple hundred more fps these things would really work well. DMK, it looks like there might be hope for this based on your results with the Black Hills factory ammo. Allient's website shows some data for the 147 grain bullets using Blue Dot which they list as giving you 1040 fps out of a 4" barrel. From you results with factory ammo, that looks optimistic, but out of a carbine, it might be able to push a 147 grain HP faster than you can shoot a 115 out of a handgun. That would satisfy me.
October 19, 2003, 02:30 PM
444, if you could push 147gr. up to around 1200, that would be getting close to a 158gr. 357 Magnum out of a 6" pistol. Maybe not quite there, but it would be capable of 15 or so rounds per magazine and semi-auto.
October 19, 2003, 02:39 PM
I don't know if you could get a 147 grain bullet up to 1200 fps. I guess I will have to see what happens. The Alliant website's fastest load with a 147 grain XTP is 1095 using Power Pistol. I am not sure if I have any of them loaded up right now, but I might. As I mentioned, internet rumor has it that you don't get much, if any velocity increase in the 9mm out of a carbine. I am going to have to get busy on this subject. It seems interesting to me.
SP: Those are pretty decent velocity jumps in the carbine. I primarily shoot 300 grain bullets in the .45 Colt. I bet the increase is even more with the heavy bullets and slow burning powder. I bet I could get 1000 fps out of a 300 in the carbine.
This type of testing seems like it would be made much easier with one of those powder measures with the built in scale and the touch pad (I want one and am looking for an excuse). You could load up 10 rounds with each 10 rounds using a different powder without going through as much hassle.
October 19, 2003, 06:44 PM
one of those powder measures with the built in scale and the touch pad Sounds interesting 444 .. any more details??
I still use my trusty Lyman 500 but .... have had thoughts of getting something a tad more ''hi-tec''.
October 19, 2003, 07:00 PM
Go to http://www.lymanproducts.com/lymanproducts/index.htm and click on Scales/Measures at the top of the page.
Digital Powder System
October 20, 2003, 09:20 AM
is there commercial ammunition in pistol calibers with slow burn powder?
Winchesters SuperX 158grn .357 SP is listed on the Win. website as having a muzzle velocity of 1235fps from a 4 inch barrel and a muzzle velocity of 1830fps from a 20 inch barrel.
While I've never used a chronograph with this load fired from my 1894CP, I did pull a bullet and weigh the powder at 16grns, which would suggest to me that the 158grn SuperX cartridge uses one of the slower burning Win rifle powders.
October 20, 2003, 04:23 PM
Good work! That confirms what I've heard many times here and on TFL. The carbine is underrated.
Anyone have data on shorter semi cartridges such as the .45 ACP or 9x19? I wonder if they would pick up as much steam given their limited powder supply.
October 20, 2003, 04:34 PM
I will tell you want I am going to do, since I am a nice guy and all. I am sitting here with not much to do, so I will do the world a great big favor and go get that data for you right now. I have about six different 9mm loads sitting on the shelf. I hope I have some 147s, but I don't know. I will take an AR15 in 9mm and probably a Ruger P89 since I know it is already dirty. I will get back to you with the results tonight.
I thought my buddy was going to call me to help him unload his moving van, but that was supposed to be this morning. I ain't gonna sit here all day waiting on him.
October 20, 2003, 05:59 PM
Excellent! THR beats the gun rags any day of the week!
October 21, 2003, 12:05 AM
Ok, here are the numbers for the 9mm. I just used the ammo I had sitting on the shelf, but it looks fairly representitive. Most are five shot averages, although a few times the chrono failed to pick up a shot and sometimes I just let it go. On the Starfires, I only had six rounds so they are two shot averages and on the Corbon I didn't want to shoot it all up so they are also two shot averages. All shots are from 15 feet.
During the test I actually got the Kel-Tec P11 to feed two consectutive rounds without a malfunction a couple times. What a pile of dung.
Guns used: Colt Lightweight Sporter AR15 in 9mm NATO with 16" barrel
Ruger P89, 4 1/2" barrel
Kel-Tec P11, 3.1" barrel
#1) 147 grain Hornady XTP, 5.5 grains of Blue Dot
Carbine: 974 fps
P89: 956 fps
P11: 881 fps
Carbine vs. P11 = 93 fps
Carbine vs. P89 = 18 fps
P89 vs. P11 = 75 fps
#2) 147 grain plated Ball, 4.0 grains Unique
Carbine: 962 fps
P89: 845 fps
P11: 789 fps
Carbine vs. P11 = 173 fps
Carbine vs. P89 = 117 fps
P89 vs. P11 = 56 fps
#3) PMC Target (Factory), 115 fmj Ball
Carbine: 1199 fps
P89: 1120 fps
P11: 1014 fps
Carbine vs. P11 = 185 fps
Carbine vs. P89 = 79 fps
P89 vs. P11 = 106 fps
#4) Corbon +P (Factory), 115 gr JHP
Carbine: 1463 fps
P89: 1354 fps
P11: 1266 fps
Carbine vs. P11 = 197 fps
Carbine vs. P89 = 109 fps
P89 vs. P11 = 88 fps
#5) PMC Starfire (Factory), 124 gr. JHP
Carbine: 1080 fps
P89: 1090 fps
P11: 959 fps
Carbine vs. P11 = 121 fps
Carbine vs. P89 = -10 fps !!!!!!!!!!!
P89 vs. P11 = 131 fps
#6) Winchester Wal-Mart Bulk Pack, 115 gr. Ball
P11: 1066 fps
Carbine vs. P11 = 231 fps
Carbine vs. P89 = 136 fps
P89 vs. P11 = 95 fps
October 21, 2003, 09:33 PM
I guess thats why they say that .45 ACP with it's faster burning powders doesn't gain that much from a carbine length barrel.......never done it, but that's the story.
October 21, 2003, 10:04 PM
Well, I don't own a carbine in .45 ACP to prove it, but I would say that you are probably right. I seriously doubt that firing a .45 ACP out of a carbine would have much effect on that cartridge despite what my local gun dealer says. He bought one of those MechTec carbine conversions for the 1911. He was telling me that at 200 yards that thing was right on the money. He almost couldn't miss. :rolleyes: Of course he told me basically the same story about the Hi-Point carbine in 9mm. :uhoh:
I have only one more combination to test out. The .45 Colt. I have a 7 1/2" Ruger Blackhawk and a Winchester 94 Trapper wiht a 16" barrel. I don't have much ammo on hand in that caliber, which is good. I can load some up with powders at both ends of the scale. I think the basic lesson has been learned or at least demonstrated by the first two tests, but I personally find this stuff interesting.
November 5, 2003, 02:10 AM
The 9mm results are fairly disappointing..
So are the 38Spl's.. I always figured that 357's can benefit from a longer barrel, but it's great to confirm that in actual chrono's.
November 5, 2003, 02:26 AM
The .38 Specials were loaded with fairly fast burning powders, so they wouldn't show as much improvement as the loads using slower burning powders.
It might be interesting to try some various powders in the .38 Special case and see what happens. There is really no good reason to do so since I can just use the .357 Mag cases, but I might learn something in doing so.
It looks like the Hodgdon website lists 4227 as the slowest burning powder in .38 Special while Alliant lists Blue Dot as their slowest burning load. I am sure that you would notice a substantial increase in velocity between the carbine and the pistol using those powders, especially 4227, that seems like a very slow burning powder for use in the .38 Special.
November 20, 2003, 12:06 AM
This thread was about carbines, but I thought I would add a little data with some of these same loads out of a 2" Ruger SP101.
18.0 Grains of Lil Gun = 1084 fps
Difference between SP101 and Carbine = 759 fps !!!
Difference between SP101 and GP100 = 179 fps
16.7 grains of H110 = 1149 fps
15.0 grains of AA #9 = 1201 fps
Difference between SP101 and Carbine = 607 fps
Differnece between SP101 and GP100 = 179 fps
All loads fired from .357 cases. H110 load not tested in Carbine.
Obviously both these loads utilized a slow burning powder for the caliber and would not be optimal loads in the short barrel.
August 18, 2004, 04:07 AM
Some of you will know that I'm interested in finding good factory defense loads in .45Colt and .44spl. for use in 16" lever rifles. I don't have the 16" Trapper yet, so I chronyed these loads with my Marlin 1894's with 20" barrels.
Here are the results from four loads which I hoped would have promise. Only one, the CorBon, performed better in the rifle than in the pistol. The other loads all suffered from the long barrel.
The test rifle was a Marlin 1894 CBC in .45 Colt with 20" barrel and for the .44spl it was a Marlin 1894SS stainless .44mag with 20" barrel. Velocity was measured in my laundry room at 9' from the muzzle with a Chrony F-1.
CorBon .45 Colt 200 gr. JHP
Pistol: 1100 FPS / 537 FPE (factory data provided)
20" Rifle: 1451 FPS / 935 FPE (my chrony data) +351 FPS !!!! WOW
Winchester SilverTip .45 Colt 225 gr. STHP
Pistol: 920 FPS / 423 FPE (factory data provided)
20" Rifle: 852 FPS / 362 FPE (my chrony data) -68 FPS
Speer Gold Dot .45 Colt 250 gr. JHP
Pistol: 900 FPS / 450 FPE (factory data provided)
20" Rifle: 828 FPS / 381 FPE (my chrony data) -72 FPS
Winchester SilverTip .44 Special 200 gr. STHP
Pistol 6.5": 900 FPS / 360 FPE (factory data provided)
20" Rifle: 893 FPS / 354 FPE (my chrony data) -7 FPS
From this I would guess that with the exception of the CorBon load, when fired from a 16" barrel, performance of the other loads *might* be comparable to that from the pistol data, but with the longer 20" barrel, performance over the pistol length barrels is definitely hampered. Except for the CorBon, these loads are definitely designed for use in pistol barrels. If chosen for use in rifles, the best choice would be the short choice, a 16" Trapper!
Guess I'll be sticking with the CorBon from my lever rifles until I can find something better... the Georgia Arms loads look promising, I'll chrony them from 16" and 20" barrels when I obtain them. And when I get the Trapper, I'll chrony these same loads again... I suspect the poor performers here might do a tad better with a barrel which is 4" shorter.
Of course with handloads, it's a whole different ballgame, but my interest here is strictly in off the shelf factory ammo for defense against two-legged vermin at close range. The lever rifles are the second choice after my Mossberg 500 Persuader, which is definitely a fair bit more "persuasive" than the rifles.
August 18, 2004, 08:42 AM
Having scored a Marlin 1894 in .41 mag at Sunday's gunshow (YESSS!!!), I've got a current burning interest in this topic, and thought I'd point out a nice piece of information from Speer. They've produced a supplementary reloading data sheet for their new 210 gr. .41 Gold Dot, with nice comparative data, right next to one another, for loads in a 6" revo and a 20" carbine (like mine. Did I say, "YESSS!!!"?).
Results are about as expected. The benefit of the longer barrel is almost precisely the inverse of the powder's burn rate. So with the traditional, slow mag powders (296, H110), you get an extra 500 fps (that's over a SIX inch barrel); but only 300 gained with the mid-range Blue Dot, and only 200 for good old Unique. Burn faster, gain less.
I know the .41 mag is probably not the most common carbine out there (though we all know in our hearts it's the cream of the crop ;) ), but this data should be of interest to shooters of more common revo calibers, since the 210 gr .41 is the virtual ballistic twin of the 158 gr .357, and kissing cousins with the 240 gr .44.
HERE (http://www.speer-bullets.com/pdf/ReloadingSupplementalDATA/41mag_gd.pdf) is the link to a pdf file of speer's data sheet.
August 18, 2004, 09:45 AM
Interesting. I've always wanted a .357 lever rifle and a .357 revolver.. I've also always wanted to try reloading. You're pushing me toward all 3. You're pushing me.......I can't afford it right now. Stop it.
August 18, 2004, 12:25 PM
Tinker... Marlin's little 1894CS in .357 with 18.5" barrel is a SWEET lever rifle in .357mag. Everyone I know who's bought one has absolutely loved it. And I love mine too. But I've been hankering for a 16" Trapper in .45 Colt... I just love that big old fat cartridge!
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