.357Mag - HS-6, Universal, Titegroup, Herco?


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drumz2129
November 17, 2009, 12:59 PM
I bought a GP100 6" stainless (my first 357/38 cal gun) this past weekend, so yesterday I bought my dies. I will be loading 158 grn Short Jacket SWC bullets. I have small pistol primers in both standard and magnum. The pistol powders i have on hand are: HS-6, Universal Clays, Titegroup, and Alliant Herco. I know H110 is a good magnum powder, but my local shop is out. Does any one have any loads for these powders they would like to share? I have 5 different manuals, and many to choose from- I'm just looking for a starting point. I want a decently heavy load, recoil is not a problem with this gun. I have also noticed that most of my manuals doesn't specify std or magnum primers.

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Steve C
November 17, 2009, 01:17 PM
Its tempting to take short cuts and skip your load development but you are cheating yourself out of the best accuracy and exposing yourself to potential damage from over pressure.

Do not cook book your load off someone else by using a load they worked up for their gun. Use a start load from the manuals or reduce maximum load by 10%. There's really no great increase in velocity by just jumping up to a load near, at or beyond maximum. Work your load up with the primer and components you select. If you change primer type or brand, start back at the the start load and work back up.

In the .357 mag the slower powder will give you the best velocity so of the ones you list that would be Herco or HS-6. Tightgroup is fast and good for low velocity target loads and Universal is good for medium velocity and cast bullet loads.

drumz2129
November 17, 2009, 02:27 PM
In the .357 mag the slower powder will give you the best velocity so of the ones you list that would be Herco or HS-6. Tightgroup is fast and good for low velocity target loads and Universal is good for medium velocity and cast bullet loads.

Steve, This is the kind of info I was looking for. I wasn't really looking for a specific charge weight, more of people's experience with these powders in this cartridge as far as how clean they burn and the amount of smoke produced. I figured HS-6 would be the better choice since it was closer to H-110 that alot of people like. I have also been told that HS-6 is a little harder to ignite and likes full cases so I figured the magnum primers would be the way to go. I have been reloading for about a year now and am still learning which powders are better for each application. I enjoy working up loads, so I wasnt short trying to short cut my load.

fourdollarbill
November 17, 2009, 03:08 PM
If you want a decently heavy load then I think the clays, titegroup and herco are out. The HS-6 will do well for a 158gr jacket bullet if that is what you have. I would think Hodgdon will have load data for the 158gr in HS-6. Go to data.hodgdon.com and you'll find it.
I have been up and down the 357mag load road for a while and I found H110, 2400 and Unique to be my choices for that caliber. But also I look at it this way... If the powder maker has load data for it... then shoot it.

rcmodel
November 17, 2009, 03:32 PM
Herco will work fine with 158 grain half-jacket or cast bullets.

Alliant 2002 Guide lists a max load of 8.2 grains Herco with a 158 JHP giving 1,305 FPS at 34,000 PSI.

They list 7.9 grains Max with a 158 cast SWC giving 1,365 FPS at 33,900 PSI.

I believe 8.2 grains will work well with your half-jacket bullets.

Herco will not burn well with reduced loads.

rc

Mark whiz
November 17, 2009, 03:44 PM
I get some VERY accurate results using Universal on 158gr bullets with my 4" Security Six.
7.0gr with LSWCs and 7.2gr with plated SWCs punch some really tight groups on paper. Both rounds Chrono a bit over 1100fps.

evan price
November 18, 2009, 01:14 AM
I load all my target ammo pretty much with Titegroup.
I will say it is good for lower velocity .357 loads, but it will not develop the best use of the Magnum case's potential. It burns clean but hot. Of all the choices you listed I would use HS-6 because it gets the best velocity for the pressure developed, assuming yo uare looking for full-house Magnum velocity.

ArchAngelCD
November 18, 2009, 01:20 AM
I agree Herco and HS-6 will be your best choices of the powders you listed. I personally like HS-6 a lot and use it often in various calibers. As you mentioned, it is like H110 is some ways including it being a hard to ignite ball powder. I would suggest using a Magnum primer with HS-6. You will find a Magnum primer will aid in a more complete burn of the powder and will lower your SD numbers too. While you won't achieve the velocities associated with H110/W296 and a few of the other "Magnum" powders HS-6 will bring you close. It's also a very accurate powder too.

drumz2129
November 18, 2009, 08:36 AM
Thanks for all the replies, it looks like I will be loading up some test loads with HS-6 this evening. I'm going for full house loads since I just picked this gun up and want to become proficient with full power loads (being my first .357mag) before coming up with target loads.

JDGray
November 20, 2009, 05:20 AM
My 6" GP liked HS6, and 2400. If memory serves me, I was loading 9-9.5gr HS6, mag primers.:)

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