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357 Mag recommended loads

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Wing Rider, Jan 4, 2019.

  1. IlikeSA

    IlikeSA Member

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    Everyone should have 3 powders available for .357 magnum. A slow shooting powder like Titegroup or Bullseye, a medium powder like Unique, and a hot powder like h110/296, Lil Gun, or 2400. I pick my powder based on what I want.

    I use the titegroup/bullseye for shooting .357 magnum wadcutter loads, which are pleasant shooting and quite fun for paper. I rarely load medium loads, and for hotter loads prefer 2400 to Lil Gun or H110, from both an economy standpoint and a general dislike of Lil Gun. I will use Lil Gun if I was using it for woods defense or hunting.
     
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  2. Dudedog
    • Contributing Member

    Dudedog Contributing Member

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    Not an issue with 2400 but one thing to be aware of with some powders for medium or light loads.
    Some powders with correct charges take up very little space in the case, so it is possible to double or triple charge the case.
    Needless to say that would not work out well at all. -> Kaboom
    Just something to be aware of if/when you decide to load some lighter loads with say something like Bullseye/HP38 etc.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
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  3. gunlaw

    gunlaw Member

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    Gotta agree with Unique for most loads. Blue Dot with heavy bullets 158g and up.
     
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  4. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    There are many powders available now that will produce full power magnum ammo. 2400 is the old standby but not outdated at all. H110/W296, Enforcer, 4227, Lil'Gun, Power Pro 300-MP, AA#9, 4100 and VV N110 are among the best for full power magnum loading.

    I have about 12 handgun powders on hand but I can load all my handgun ammo very well with only 3. The original powder trinity was Bullseye, Unique and 2400 and are still good choices. The 3 powders I rely on most are W231(HP-38), HS-6(W540) and W296(H110). That might change when I test W572 and W244 but for not those 3 are my powder trinity.

    W296/H110, HS-6 and a few other slow ball powders should be used with magnum primers, others like 2400 are fine with standard primers.

    This is all just my opinion and I hope it helps you some.
     
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  5. Ej3

    Ej3 Member

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    For punching paper, consider 158 gr polycoated SWC like those from Eggleston Munitions. With shipping, these are less than $0.12 per bullet. I use the .358 diameter and they work great. And my barrel is very clean after shooting.

    357 Mag with 158 gr polycoated SWC (2).jpg

    I have not tried 2400, but have successfully used Power Pistol. My results using 6.8 gr Power Pistol with 158 Gr Polycoated SWC and WSP - Avg 1105 FPS from a 6" GP-100. Very fun to shoot with low recoil and still plenty of flash (if that’s what you want). I think BE-86 would be another good choice, for less flash.

    Today I bought 100 Speer Jacketed HP 125 gr. (P/N 4013) for $15.11 with tax from my local Sportsman’s Warehouse. I also wanted to try some 2400 but it was out of stock. So I am going to try these using Power Pistol this weekend.
     
  6. Legionnaire
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    Legionnaire Member

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    Here's what I'm running, all under 158 grain Keith-style semi-wadcutters from Missouri Bullet Co:

    Trail Boss : 4.2 grains
    Unique : 6.4 grains
    2400 : 14.0 grains

    I shoot them mostly in a 3-inch and a 4-inch GP100.
     
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  7. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    I got my favorite load from Skeeter Skeleton. I really enjoyed his tales, Skeeter though, loaded 13.5 grains 2400 in 38 Special cases, which I think, is way too hot. However, the same powder charge in a 357 case is just fine. In my opinion this is a full power load, actually might be a "max", though I have never had pressure problems in any of my 357 Mags. While there is always some leading, leading is not bad with 13.5 grain 2400 and lead bullets. I usually finish my shooting session blowing out what lead did get left in the barrel, with the same powder charge and a 158 gr

    Smith & Wesson M27-2 6.5” Barrel


    158 LSWC 13.5grs 2400 R-P cases Fed 100
    4-Sep-05 T = 80 °F

    Ave Vel = 1245
    Std Dev = 22.49
    ES = 97.26
    High = 1285
    Low = 1187
    Number shots = 32

    158 LSWC 13.5grs 2400 R-P cases CCI primers
    9-Oct-05 T = 64 °F

    Ave Vel = 1273
    Std Dev = 44.03
    ES = 176.7
    High = 1372
    Low = 1195
    N = 30



    158 JHP (W/W) 13.5 grains 2400 R-P cases WSP
    5-Aug-06 T = 103 °F

    Ave Vel =1196
    Std Dev =26.58
    ES =87.17
    High =1244
    Low =1157
    N =10


    IPF1NO4.jpg

    Z6uAebC.jpg

    rZYx046.jpg

    Colt Trooper MKIII 6" Barrel


    158 gr LSWC 13.5 grs 2400 R-P cases WSP
    30-Dec-15 T = 55 ° F

    Ave Vel =1169
    Std Dev =33
    ES =176.3
    High =1276
    Low =1100
    N =24


    158 gr JHP 13.5 grs 2400 R-P cases WSP
    30-Dec-15 T = 58 ° F

    Ave Vel =1108
    Std Dev =18
    ES =49.86
    High =1140
    Low =1090
    N =6

    VTtDI0h.jpg
     
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  8. Blue68f100

    Blue68f100 Member

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    I've noticed some has recommended Lil'Gun. Lil'Gun has a been know to cut the forcing cone on revolvers, so I would not recommend it. For rifles it's ok. But it runs extremely hot, (temp) and can make the gun unpleasant to handle in a short time.
     
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  9. Wing Rider

    Wing Rider Member

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    There is a lot of great information here. I understand the higher cost of the XTPs for shooting paper but since this is my first time reloading, I wanted to use the easiest components to use to get a feel for using the new press. I guess the other reason for the jacketed bullets is because a friend gave me a few boxes of just lead ball cartridges years ago and when I shot them it was causing slivers of lead to be ejected from the gun when fired. I never had any issues with any other type of bullet and that is why I went with the jacketed XTPs. I am interested in the coated bullets to see how they perform. It appears a lot of you use the coated bullets with good success. More to learn. :)
     
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  10. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

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    The only .357 + 2400 load I had that did not exhibit Slamfire's wide velocity swings of post 32 was a rather top load and a 200 gr bullet.
     
  11. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Member

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    Very soft lead will shave and blow out between the barrel cylinder gap, it's true; harder cast bullets may or may not have that problem. I haven't used coated bullets yet, either, I'd be curious to see if that cuts it. TBH, there is nothing mysterious about loading cast bullets vs jacketed, but I understand your desire to eliminate variables. The XTP is an excellent bullet and shoots well out of anything I load it in.
     
  12. Toprudder

    Toprudder Member

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    I have even noticed that with some plated bullets when shot from my 44 mag revolver. In my magnum revolvers, I've pretty much decided to stick with Zero JSP bullets. Plus, I can push them hard in my rifles without any worries.

    I've wondered the same thing about 300-MP in revolvers, since it seems to have some of the same characteristics of Lil-Gun. But I do love 300-MP in my 357 and 44mag rifles!
     
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  13. eo1bart

    eo1bart Member

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    Wing Rider; I load 158gr XTP's with 2400. 13.5 gr gets me 1250fps out of the Ruger GP100 w/6" barrel. These are fairly hot loads.
    As others have said, something like BE-86 is a good choice for mid-range loads
     
  14. RealGun

    RealGun Member

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    Some of your die choices and reloading strategies may be different with lead bullets. The XTPs are ideal for common die sets and setups, so that is a good place to start.
     
  15. JimKirk

    JimKirk Member

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    I enjoy shooting 9 grains of HS 6 under the XTP 158 .... gives me about 1200 fps out my 4" Security Six. ..

    I have shot both 2400 & W296(H110) .... for full power loads...
     
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  16. Glockula

    Glockula Member

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    I wouldn't change a thing. 2400 and xtp projos are my go to full house .357s. I have used this in a lever gun and 4 .357 mag revolvers.

    Target loads get a mild charge of unique with lead or plated projectiles
     
  17. IWAC

    IWAC Member

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    Back when I started loading, my Brother in Law gave me a can of 2400. I didn't like it very much, and recently, again trying some of "Skeeter's loads", I tried his "medium" load...13.5 gr 2400/S&W 586/standard primer.:what: Same result. YMMV Soooo....back I went to my go-to for ~35 years...Unique. I have Unique, Universal, and Trail Boss. I'm going to Cabela's today, and may pick up a can of either Herco or AA #5, which a police officer friend recommended as a Very Good Powder. I figure one can of a "newer" concoction, IMR BLUE is said to be analagous to Blue Dot, which was a nice-shooting powder... or Herco should round out my selection nicely. That said, being a certified "olde Pfart", I no longer "need" to shoot full power and find that 850-1,000fps loads fill any conceivable need I may have, and are enjoyable to shoot, just as long as they don't fly back and knock my hat off! :) Decisions, decisions! :D
     
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  18. JohnB-40

    JohnB-40 Member

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    I'm partial to 4.5 grains of W 231 under a 158 gr cast lead. Nice accurate load without the blast wave.
     
  19. Jack B.

    Jack B. Member

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    Just follow your load manuals that you have. Can't go wrong. Sounds like you have quality component's. Load em up and go shooting. 2400 is a great powder for.357 magnum. Been using it for 50 years and is still my favorite.
     
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  20. Jack B.

    Jack B. Member

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    I've used Lil'Gun in 480 Ruger with 355 gr bullets for years and have had no problems. I tend to use Lil'Gun in large caliber loads with heavy bullets though and don't really use it in smaller caliber loads like.357 magnum so you may have a point. Just don't know.:confused:
     
  21. Wing Rider

    Wing Rider Member

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    Thanks everyone. I am going to make a few loads with the 2400 and see how I like them.
    Toprudder,
    I noticed the Zero JSP has a bare lead base instead of completely jacketed. Does this cause any problems with leading?
     
  22. Bugster

    Bugster Member

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    I don't have my load data in front of me, but I started loading my 357 with 2400 using Lee's Modern Reloading 2nd Edition and Lymans 49th Edition. I'm not a young man and I have my share of lifes road wear and the recoil is very manageable. As a matter of fact I need to go get another can of 2400 right now. I can't speak to using any other powder, but I can say if you use the start load charge weight for target loads they are easily manageable.
    That all being said I may have to try out some Unique. :cool:
     
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  23. 1976B.L.Johns.

    1976B.L.Johns. Member

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    Defiantly try it!
    Though 2400 is my "Go To", in my older age I am starting to like Unique.
     
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  24. Toprudder

    Toprudder Member

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    The ones I have are copper based. I picked those specifically because I had problems with leading in my barrel.

    Typical FMJ and JSP are "cup and core" bullets. They form a cup with the copper and fill it with lead. FMJ are filled from the base, JSP (and hollow points) are filled from the nose. The only exception I have personally seen are the 110gn 30 cal "short jacket" bullets.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2019
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  25. Blue68f100

    Blue68f100 Member

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    You should have the copper jacket cotacting the barrel, so no leading is expected. Most of this design roll the copper jacket in about 1/16"+. Some even have a cover material so lead is not exposed. It's when the lead is contacting the barrel that you have to be aware of leading.
     
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