180 - 200 grain HC .357 for southern woods carry?


September 28, 2011, 11:45 PM
Hey y'all,

I'd like some of the more experienced shooters to field this one if you can. I am wondering about the adequacy of a couple loadings for the purpose of defense, not hunting, in southern woods (Carolina's to Colorado and anywhere south). The biggest creatures you're likely to meet are black bear, feral hog, alligator, and mountain lion.

Do you think these would get the job done and if so, which would you choose (defense only)? These would be carried in a 4" Ruger Gp100...

Brand: Corbon Hunter
Bullet: 200 grain .357, hard-cast lead
Velocity (ft/s): 1150 out of a 6" barrel (yet would be carried in 4" barrel)
Energy (foot pounds): 587

Brand: Buffalo Bore
Bullet: 180 grain .357, hard-cast LFN-GC
Velocity (ft/s): 1400 out of a ?? barrel, 1375 out of 4" barrel
Energy (foot pounds): 783 - ish

On one hand the Corbon bullet is heavier by 20 grains, yet the BB pushes the bullet 200 - 300 ft/s faster. Both are hard-cast, with the BB advertising LFN-GC, i'm not sure if the Corbon is GC or not.



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September 29, 2011, 01:22 AM
Buffalo bore.

Their ammo almost always exceeds their listed numbers in my firearms (GP100, S&W 19, 642) and is dead accurate. I keep a box of that around for when I go hiking, it always pays to have something for everyone (and everything) you meet on the trail.

I would trust that loading for just about everything save moose, bison and grizzlies in the continental US.

Just be aware, it'll hit high for most of your guns unless you sight in for it.

September 29, 2011, 02:00 AM
The BB loading is intriguing but I'm wondering if 180 grains at 1300 - 1400 ft/s is really all that different from 200 grains at 1050 - 1150 ft/s - both potentially being sub-optimal for defense from medium to large predators. I might just have to get a box of both and see which one the Ruger likes best (she don't lie).

September 29, 2011, 10:08 AM
I am a big fan of the Corbon 200 load which went defunct a couple years ago I think unless they recently brought it back. It really fills the throat area in a cylinder! Also I get 1100+ fps for real out of 4" barrels and 1300fps from 8" with it my Oehler showed. It does not want to stop and has shot thru steers with ease. It is accurate too. I bought 300 rounds at a discontinued price three or more years ago and have a 150 left . IMHO it is the only bear defense .357 load happening.

September 29, 2011, 11:18 AM
Either one is more than adequate for a .357.

September 29, 2011, 12:44 PM
I totally agree.

Heck, for that matter, a hard cast 158 Keith SWC is more then adequate.

And they wouldn't kick as hard for fast follow-up shots.


September 29, 2011, 04:13 PM
Tony the tiger I used a DW 357 for over 20 years for hogs and used a milder 180gr hc that federal loads and it allways did it job with almost always haveing pass-thru shoots. You don't need the extra fps the BB offers but try a box to see what you think. Recovery is way faster with the milder loads and that my mean alot with the short barrel. I allways used a 8" barrel and picked up a few fps to 1188 fps.

September 29, 2011, 05:00 PM
It's a coin toss between those 2 offerings. I like the velocity on the BB, so that would be my choice. 20g difference in weight is marginal considering the additional 30% velocity with the BB.

Brett Byers AKA Slow
September 29, 2011, 05:34 PM
I have no doubt those hardcast loads would be very effective against your quarry. You might check out Beartooth Bullets website and look at Handgun Loads - A Critical Look. If you want to save a little money and don't reload yet you might want to consider Double Tap ammo. Leverguns.com has an article by Jim Taylor entitled The Three Fifty Seven Magnum's in My Life that you may find informative.

September 29, 2011, 06:14 PM
Thanks for the responses. Verdict is still out on this one, but I have a box of 20 of the Corbon and a box of 20 of the BB on it's way. I'll do a report of how they feel in the Ruger once the BB box gets here.

For others reading this thread, I've included the links that Brett just referenced in the above post.

"Handgun hunting loads - a critical look"


Lever guns, "The three-fifty-seven magnums in my life"


Thanks for the reading material and the active discussion.

September 29, 2011, 06:19 PM
13.8 grains AA#9 and a 180 Hornady XTP is my preferred stomper, or my fall back of 14.5 grains 2400 and a 165 Lee gas checked SWC. The 165 shoots 1470fps and the 180 shoots 1400 out of my 6.5" Blackhawk.

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