What'sthe minimum charge for a Jacketed bullet?


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warnerwh
December 14, 2009, 01:26 AM
I'd like to make a very light load so I can get my daughter more acclimated to a 357 magnum. My general purpose load is 7.5gr of Unique under a 125gr Rem JHP in a .357 case which probably isn't going much faster than 1,000-1,100fps just guessing. It just a little too much for her to shoot comfortably for any period of time.

I've read that a jacketed bullet needs to be pushed to 1,000fps minimum so the jacket doesn't get stuck in the barrel. The more I think about it the more I think it's poo unless the load is really light. I figure I better make sure before I spend the time loading. I'd like to get the velocity of the 125gr bullets down to around 800fps if I can safely. I have no .357 cast bullets.

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Steve C
December 14, 2009, 03:38 AM
I've read that a jacketed bullet needs to be pushed to 1,000fps minimum so the jacket doesn't get stuck in the barrel.

You must have missread or simply missunderstood the information. It is a general guidline that you need 1,000 fps to get reliable expansion from a jacketed hollow point but most .38 spl jacketed bullets that are 125gr or heavier have a muzzle velocity of well under 1K fps. The only time I've ever seen a bullet stick in a barrel is when the powder was left out and the primer pused it into the barrel.

If you are looking for light loads I'd suggest you get some lead or plated bullets and use Cowboy Action load data or just load with .38 spl data standard velocity data start loads. If you insist on 125gr jacketed bullets a 5.2gr load of Unique in a .38 spl case should give you a velocity of around 800 fps + with a 125gr JHP from a 4" barrel, this is a start load, Alliants older data says 5.7grs of Unique is maximum standard pressure with a 125gr JSP, perfectly able to clear the barrel.

ArchAngelCD
December 14, 2009, 03:58 AM
I agree, all you need to do is shoot light .38 Special loads from your .357 Magnum handgun and you will have exactly what you are looking for. Use the starting charge data for a 125gr bullet and that's that...

MichaelK
December 14, 2009, 01:07 PM
The Speer manual specifically mentions in-barrel jacket lodging, but it is only a problem with their straight-sided jacketed bullets, like their 146 grain hollowpoint. But, their minumum loads for standard 38 special is only 5.0 grains of unique, which gives you 871 fps in their 6" barreled gun. In 38 special, 5.9 grains gives +P pressure and 1048 fps. So, velocities less than 1000 with the 125 grain bullet should be OK.

In a .357 case, it's reasonable to increase the starting charges about 10%, so you might get about the same performance with a starting charge of 5.5 grains of Unique. Then, you can gradually work up to maximum charges which is 9.1 grains in their #10 manual. At that loading your bullet will be going about 1400fps. As long as you do carefull load development, I don't see you running into any problems.

rcmodel
December 14, 2009, 01:36 PM
That 1,000 FPS rule, if there is a rule, applies to jacketed bullets in rifle length barrels.

You can load 125 grain jacketed bullets in .38 Special down to about 500 FPS safely using faster powders like Unique. Just don't try it with slow burning powers like 2400 or WW296.

Also don't try it with heavier bullets like 158 grain jacketed as they have a much longer bearing surface & higher bore friction then 125's.

For your needs I would suggest between 5.0 and 6.0 grains Unique in .357 cases & 125 grain jacketed bullets.

But for truly light loads, you would be far ahead with lead bullets.

rc

Walkalong
December 14, 2009, 01:42 PM
Any starting load in a good manual will be light but at the same time guarantee that the bullet exits the barrel. .38 Spl loads in .357 brass will be fairly light and plenty safe. 700 to 800 FPS loads with 125 Gr bullets in .38 or .357 brass are plenty safe and will exit the gun every time.

I have shot some test loads at very low velocities in pistols and have had bullets as low as 400 FPS that made it out of the barrel, but that is on the ragged edge of sticking a jacketed or plated bullet.

Walkalong
December 14, 2009, 01:49 PM
Oh, and that was with fast powders.

4.0 Grs of 700X or 4.0 Grs of Clays with a 125 Gr plated or jacketed bullet will give you around 800 & 900 FPS using .357 brass. You can go a little lighter with either. Don't go any higher with Clays. You can go a little higher with 700X.

warnerwh
December 14, 2009, 06:28 PM
Thank you guys for the info. This is what I have thought for years as it seemed like I heard, told or whatever that jackets can stick in the barrel. I think 5.5 or 6 gr. of Unique will be fine. The reason I want to use these 125gr jacked bullets is because I have a lot of them. Otherwise I'd buy some lead bullets.

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