Full Power 357 Load


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washambala
October 3, 2010, 11:39 PM
I am trying to decide whether or not i want to get a 44 revolver when I'm old enough. I like the idea of it. The only problem I see concerning whether or not i will enjoy shooting it is recoil.

Now, I would love to go test fire one to see if its my cup of tea but I don't seem to know anyone who owns one. My dad does have a few Ruger 357s (A 6" GP100 and a 2" SP101) that I enjoy shooting but I don't think he has ever bought high power ammo for them. To me both guns are fun to shoot the way a 22 revolver is. I think this has something to do with the fact that we are still burning thru his 10 year old light mag reloads. So I'm wondering if there are any good full power 357 loadings that will work in both of these guns that will put me somewhere near the perceived recoil of a 44.

If it helps, the particular gun I'm interested in mimicking is the Ruger Redhawk with a 4" barrel.

EDIT: looks like the roughest thing i have shot out of either gun is a 158gr 357 blazer. not sure how fast.

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tasco 74
October 4, 2010, 12:13 AM
since you are on the fence about the .44 mag i would highly suggest you get a good .357 manum revolver..... the caliber will stop anything in no. america 2 legged or 4............... i have always thought .44 mags are over rated..... i have shot the .44 mag in a handgun and there quite a bit of recoil and it's easy to develope a flinch.......... a good friend of mine has a contender reamed out to .444 marlin he shot IHMSA with and that is a real handful with heavy bullet full house loads..................... i have a s&w 6" model 27 and i think that's all i really need.....................................

washambala
October 4, 2010, 12:50 AM
I do plan on getting a 357. In fact the first handgun i plan to buy is a GP100 with a 4-6" barrel or an SP101 in the 3" variety. I would however like to know where my limits are.

As far as flinching goes, I already seem to have a flinch. something that seems to help is to shoot something with a rather large amount of recoil and then go back to the normal stuff. That makes the flinch go away.

At this point, I just want to try new things. That is what adolescence is about after all.

Guy de Loimbard
October 4, 2010, 12:54 AM
Ask your dad to load the empties from his 10 year old reloads with 16.7 gr of WW 296 and a 158 gr. SCW. That will get you a fair amount of recoil. If you want more recoil, get some 125's and load even more powder.

Sport45
October 4, 2010, 01:20 AM
To me both guns are fun to shoot the way a 22 revolver is.

Why not just keep them fun to shoot?

If you want to have to hang on to something load the 101 with the hot 125gr load that Guy suggested above.

As far as flinching goes, I already seem to have a flinch. something that seems to help is to shoot something with a rather large amount of recoil and then go back to the normal stuff. That makes the flinch go away.

I don't agree with this. It may make some of the apprehension go away, but not the flinch. Try dry firing instead. Then work your way up to more robust loadings. Squeeze the trigger smoothly straight back (toward your nose). When the hammer falls it should be a surprise. Your reaction to the recoil should occur after the bullet is on its way to the target.

ArchAngelCD
October 4, 2010, 03:15 AM
I would try to deal with that flinch before I would fire anything heavier than what you are firing right now.

I agree 16.7gr W296/H110 under a 158gr bullet will provide you with a stout Magnum load. If your dad doesn't want to or has stopped reloading you can buy some full house Magnum ammo for yourself. Buffalo Bore, Double Tap and Black Hills are a few that will provided exactly what you are looking for.

sniper5
October 4, 2010, 03:36 AM
If you want pure raw recoil and power in a handgun, get a Thompson Center Encore with a barrel for .45/70. Buy a padded glove with it. And make sure you really hang on to it the first time you fire it. You've been warned.

oldfool
October 4, 2010, 09:15 AM
what Sport45 said
heftier loads will not defeat flinch
get a set of good snapcaps, load one in each cylinder with the rest being live loads, give a spin and close (no peeking)
when the gun jerks in your hand upon hitting the snapcap, you will see it VERY plainly and train yourself out of that flinch factor faster than with any other method
instant feedback
(much harder to do by only dry fire practice, because the noise factor is a big deal in promoting flinch, it's not just "felt recoil", humans are supposed to reflexively jump at sudden loud noises, and you have to "get your mind right" to beat it)

BullRunBear
October 4, 2010, 09:52 AM
Is there a range in your area that rents revolvers? Might the quickest way to satisfy your curiousity regarding the 44 mag.

Your thought about starting with a 357 is a good one. I've found most folks like the GP100 with 4 or 6 inch barrel, comfortable and accurate and it will handle hot loads as well as 38 specials. Also, the grip on the GP is better for comfort and control compared to the smaller grip on the SP101. I have an SP101 snubby and that grip in my very large hands can be a problem with hot loads which is why I normally use 38s in it. When I'm in the mood for some recoil, rare these middle-aged days, I load up some nuclear rounds for my 357 Redhawk.:D

Jeff

Monster Zero
October 4, 2010, 10:29 AM
Also, I'm inferring a couple of things from your post. If I'm wrong I apologize in advance.

First, it seems like you value power, power, power in a handgun. That's fine, a person's choice of firearms and choice of ammo to shoot in it is a personal choice. What I suggest is to be sure to use eye and ear protection. I use earplugs and a muff-type hearing protector myself. (Too late for me actually; I have some tinnitus that showed up after an Elton John / Billy Joel concert a few years ago.)

Second, you are young and just getting started. This is a very cool thing actually. You probably don't make a whole lot of money right now... have you considered how cool it would be to be able to go do all the shooting you want at a reasonable cost, and get lots of practice practice practice?

Get a .22 of your choice. Buy ammo by the brick, and enjoy countless happy hours of shooting. You'll fall in love with it.

My experience has been that a .357 loaded with .38's is something that girls will take or leave, but they will absolutely fall in love with a .22 just like you will.

Conversely, girls DON'T like guns that make a great big BOOM or that they can't shoot themselves. This is important stuff that young guys need to keep in mind. This has to do with one of the most important things in the world at your age.

Betcha never thoughta that, now, didja?

washambala
October 5, 2010, 12:44 AM
Wow. Not quite what I was after. Here we go:

Guy- Those reloads we shoot are all thats left from when he used to reload. he sold all of his equipment years ago and despite all of my coaxing, he wont buy a new set.

ArchAngel- Thanks. I will look into those brands.

Sniper5- I dont care much for the TC pistols. I looked briefly at the Magnum Research BFR in .45/70 But I dont much like the idea of a revolver thats bigger than my arm (might be exaggerating. maybe)

Bull-This was one of the first things I looked into. The closest official shooting range is about an hour drive south. They dont rent guns. The closest I know of that rents guns is about 2.5 hours away. No Bueno

Monster- First-I always use ear protection and starting more recently (2-3 years ago) I have been using eye protection. Second- 22s are fun. I do plan on getting a few. However I enjoy that positive feedback of a "beefier" round. Kinda like how people who enjoy spicy food feel. Its the kind of thing that makes you know you are REALLY awake. And as far as girls are concerned, I am not a sadistic person. I am not going to take a girl out who has never handled a gun before, give her a 454 and say "have fun." If she has never shot before then she gets to start on the 22. If she has then she can take her pick from my arsenal. Thats my policy.

People talking about flinch- I would love to try dry firing drills and snap caps and more shooting practice. The problem is that my dad doesn't go shooting very often (once every 2-3 months. maybe) and aside from that the only chance I get to handle any of the guns is for cleaning. I cant ask to see them for what he regards as "playing with them." There is nothing I can do to change his mind.

EDIT: Cant the SP101 hold up to the super hot "ruger-only" magnums like the GP100 can?

Kirby86
October 5, 2010, 01:58 AM
I recently traded a .44 Ruger redhawk with a 9 inch barrel for a Virginian Dragoon .357 single action. The triggers on the old redhawks are just beastly, and i hated the weight.

If you're looking for some hot .357 loads, checkout Buffalo Bore's 180 gr Penetrators. (http://www.gunblast.com/MilesFortis-AKChurch_BuffaloBore.htm) They sure do a number on hogs at least.

5.7Man
October 5, 2010, 07:47 AM
You could always buy the 44 mag and shoot it With 44 Special or 44 magnum cowboy loads. They are pretty tame plus you will build up a supply of brass for reloading if you decide to take it up later on. The other nice thing is that you can walk into a Gun shop or walmart and buy full power 44 mag ammo for hunting.

I would think shooting the sp101 with full power factory 357 ammo would give you a close feel for the .44.

Good Luck, Dan

Sport45
October 5, 2010, 10:18 AM
Cant the SP101 hold up to the super hot "ruger-only" magnums like the GP100 can?

The SP101 can certainly handle .357mag cartridges. AFAIK, "Ruger Only" loads only apply to the .45 Colt round and not even to all Rugers. Don't go crazy just because the revolver is made by Ruger.

The_Shootist
October 5, 2010, 04:07 PM
I find my 4" bbl 686+ not hard to conceal (and certainly easy for range duty) so a GP 100 would likely do the trick for either CHL/Range duty.

But I DO like my 3" bbl SP 101 for both - ALOT. As others have said it has the weight for serious extended range work but not so much that its uncomfortable for CHL duty as a belt gun. Due to its verstility, I'd recommend it for a "first" .357 purchase.

Its funny, but I found shooting the .357 Blazer 158 gr JHP's out of the SP 101 so easy and accurate that I'm seriously considering using then for SD ammo.

washambala
October 5, 2010, 05:50 PM
So, in general, what am I looking for that will indicate that a particular factory load is hard kicking? Bullet weight? velocity? muzzle energy? And what sort of range would be considered high recoil for the 357?

Cosmoline
October 5, 2010, 05:55 PM
It depends on the weight and barrel length of your revolver. I've owned and shot a great many .357's and .44 mags. I find the minimum weight and barrel length for a comfortable .357 magnum revolver is about 26 oz. and 3". For the .44 Magnum it's more like 40 oz and 6". As a general rule the single action revolvers will have a more rolling recoil than the double actions, and hence are a little more comfortable to shoot.

Thus, a big old long barreled Super Blackhawk in .44 Magnum is a joy to shoot so long as you don't knock your knuckle on the guard. An undersized Taurus in .44 magnum is brutal.

Likewise, a little .357 J frame airweight is horrifically brutal with full power loads, while the Speed Six is a pleasure.

Yarddog
October 5, 2010, 06:12 PM
For a inexspencive Hot Load, Try the 125gr Rem. UMC Got one heck of a kick ; )
Y/D

racine
October 5, 2010, 06:27 PM
per Tasco 74
"...since you are on the fence about the .44 mag i would highly suggest you get a good .357 manum revolver..... the caliber will stop anything in no. america 2 legged or 4............... i have always thought .44 mags are over rated..... i have shot the .44 mag in a handgun and there quite a bit of recoil and it's easy to develope a flinch.......... a good friend of mine has a contender reamed out to .444 marlin he shot IHMSA with and that is a real handful with heavy bullet full house loads..................... i have a s&w 6" model 27 and i think that's all i really need..................................... "
__________________

Seriously??? I'll say this, I'd be very leery of fighting off No. American moose or 600 lb Grizzly Bear with a 357 even with it's heaviest load. Perhaps if you're a crack shot and can get the first or 2 rounds in through the eyes or nose but after seeing video of a park ranger emptying his 6 rounds of 357 into a grizzly without effect-I'm afraid even 44 mags with 305 gr. going at 1300fps may not be enough. Perhaps in the lower flatlands where black bears roam that may be but not up in the rockies...

washambala
October 5, 2010, 08:56 PM
Im just looking for most murderous ammo that one can stuff down the cylinder of a SP101 or GP100.

Sport45
October 6, 2010, 12:43 AM
Im just looking for most murderous ammo that one can stuff down the cylinder of a SP101 or GP100.

The most murderous for who, the shooter or the shootee? There's a difference.

washambala
October 6, 2010, 01:18 AM
The shooter. most ammo is murderous at the muzzle end. anything that was designed to go in the cylinder of a 357 certainly is.
I am looking for something particularly deadly for the person on the grip end.

Cosmoline
October 6, 2010, 01:53 AM
.357 magnum is .357 magnum. Some are loaded with 180 and 200 grain hardcasts, and will recoil a bit more. But there is no +P for .357 Magnum. If you want to go further with the cartridge you have to go with the .357 Maximum. If you just want more recoil, use a smaller revolver. Though I have to say if your goal is to get a taste of a .44 Magnum you really just need to test out a .44 Magnum. Even a little J frame magnum is going to be different than a .44 Magnum. The recoil will be sharper with a smaller grip size, and will hurt different parts of your hand than an undersized .44 Mag would.

washambala
October 6, 2010, 02:01 AM
I dont think it would be a good idea to try shooting 357 max in a GP100. I dont even thing the cylinder would close. I guess I will look for those hardcast bullets until I can find someone that owns a 44 in the area.

ArchAngelCD
October 6, 2010, 05:52 AM
I don't think you will be happy with any .357 Magnum from what you're writing in this thread. You will just have to buy a 454 Casull IMO... :evil:

Sport45
October 6, 2010, 07:15 AM
For a inexpensive Hot Load, Try the 125gr Rem. UMC Got one heck of a kick ; )

Agreed. Or just about any other off-the-shelf 125gr .357mag JHP cartridges. You'll get a heck of a kick and a tremendous flash in the SP101. Do wear your hearing protection.

But as Cosmoline said, it still ain't the same as a .44mag. Of course dpending on what you put in it, a .44mag can be mild to wild too.

oldfool
October 9, 2010, 02:40 AM
"I am looking for something particularly deadly for the person on the grip end."

I just don't think the lad will ever ring his wind chimes with a revolver, 454 being a tad tame for young 'uns
might oughta' think about a Contender in a fat magnum rifle round, or 45-70 wildcat load, or mebbe something in a 700 NitroExpress
(fewer rounds required "to get the feel of it", you know, and don't really matter if you flinch or not, cause you don't have to do it twice nohow, unless you shoot both right handed and left handed)

thinking I have seen a handgun somewhere on some gun forum chambered in 50 BMG, that might be memorable

not everybody who likes guns is truly destined to enjoy 'em for all that long anyway
"live fast, die young, and leave a beautiful memory"
why wait for old age to ruin your hands and hearing ???
time and tide waits on no man
no thrill, no drill, no point in it

PS
who woulda' thunk it, just the thing, and in a revolver, too... google that
Zeliska 600 Nitro Express Revolver
start saving up !

zxcvbob
October 9, 2010, 02:53 AM
For a inexspencive Hot Load, Try the 125gr Rem. UMC Got one heck of a kick ; )
Those are the ones I use to compare my reloads with to make sure I'm not fooling myself.

wanderinwalker
October 9, 2010, 09:19 AM
Sounds like you need to try a .44 Magnum. Heck, I'm not much older than you sound and my first handgun at 21 was a S&W 629 in .44 Magnum with a 6" barre. If you were closer, I'd take you to the range and let you try it. The only thing in .357 that comes close to the experience would be a light weight J-frame S&W, or maybe one of the new Ruger LCRs. The SP-101 is just heavy enough to tame out the recoil impulse. Actually, I enjoy shooting my .44, but my favorite reload is about equivalent to a full-power .357 in recoil, without the flash and noise.

Second, get a .22! You will enjoy shooting it more, more often, and the only way to get rid of your flinch is to work it out with dry-firing and low-recoil practice. You don't want to make it worse, or it will be impossible to correct in the future. And it's not a macho thing, I've seen big burly guys flinch when shooting their magnum revolvers and rifles.

And girls DIG shooting with .22s. Trust me. I have a couple of ex-girlfriends who enjoyed going to the range with a semi-auto .22 and would shoot all of the magazines I could load and hand them. And they were pretty decent shots too.

Lastly, double up the hearing protection. This will help more with the flinch than you might believe. Guns are loud, and humans are preconditioned to jump at loud noises. Training and experience help tone this down; I've seen people fall asleep behind a hot line at the National Matches, and have taken a couple of naps there myself... But just cutting the noise to start with helps tremendously.

Oh, and if you really, really want to punish yourself with recoil, you have to try a .45-70 Encore pistol. It's fun, in some strange way. I would do it again, but I won't buy one of them myself. All I can describe the sensation as is like catching a fast ball, bare-handed.

The Lone Haranguer
October 9, 2010, 01:14 PM
The closest thing would be some of the 180-grain hunting loads put out by various manufacturers. There is only so much you can do with the caliber as far as making the bullets heavier, before the round becomes too long to fit in the cylinder. The lighter weight of the GP vs. the Redhawk is a factor as well.

ArtP
October 9, 2010, 05:20 PM
Washambala - I was recently in your shoes and didn't know what exactly to expect for recoil in a fullhouse 44 mag load. No amount of forum-ing or talking about it is ever going to satisfy your need to know. In my opinion neither will the hottest 357 loads - you'll still wonder.

I have a super blackhawk and shoot full power 240 & 270 grain loads. There is no comparison to it and a friends Colt 4" 357. They're in two different leagues.

I think just about any person can physically handle the power of the 44. The real question is, can you become proficient with it and not fear it? Again, you'll never know until you try.

For the record, I do not think the 44 mag is overrated. For woods protection and hog hunting with a lever 44, it is hands down more adequate than a 357.

oldfool
October 9, 2010, 10:34 PM
all "humor" aside, ArtP is dead on target

you never will know what wicked recoil is w/ 357, unless shot out of way too little gun (which GPs and SPs ain't, meaning not too little), but 357 is just not inherently that harsh, just loud
shoot what you can, when you can, but you need look to 44mag, 45 long colt, or 454 to feel real deal recoil, try to find somebody that will let you try one (safely)
I never shot a S&W 500, but they say it a heavy, soft, slow recoil, not that harsh, but I really wouldn't know
the 44mag is a lot more gun than you really need for a lot of things that 357 can do plenty well enough on
but for certain, it most certainly is more gun, not overrated, and will kill pretty much anything smaller than Godzilla

washambala
October 10, 2010, 01:08 AM
Art-I think you are right. Maybe I can convince my dad to take me down the the big range in Phoenix to shoot one.

oldfool- same as above. From what I understand, The 500 isnt as bad as it sounds because the standard gun has a 10" barrel, a big comp and ways more than I do. My friends dad has a snubbie model and said that is absolutely murderous to shoot. That being said, he has gone bear hunting with it. Also, your post got me wondering how the 44 stacks up against the 454 for recoil.

zxcvbob
October 10, 2010, 01:18 AM
I've never shot a .44 Magnum, but I do load a .45LC Ruger to the same energy levels. I would like to shoot a .44 sometime just to make sure I'm not fooling myself, but I have no desire to shoot anything stronger like a .454.

Just plain vanilla (but full power, not "cowboy") .45 Colt loads have more recoil than a .357, although the recoil is different; not as sharp.

If you want a gun to punish yourself with, get one of the new lightweight tiny .380's. Or just get some firecrackers and light one in your hand, it's about the same thing.

oldfool
October 10, 2010, 11:28 AM
nah, the LCP/Keltec 380 ain't that harsh, just too "snappy", will sure enough "bite" the web of your hand, mostly just due to lack of enough handle, not that much fun for 50 in a row, but not the same hurt a big bore can put on you
the firecracker thing was a pretty good analogy, but not a real big firecracker

anybody who really likes shooting 50+ in a row of hot/fast 44 mags or 45 LCs is a way tougher dude than me !

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