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38 special and 2400

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by ljnowell, Feb 14, 2012.

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  1. ljnowell

    ljnowell Member

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    As the title says, who has some expeience with it? The pressure of the load seems a little low for 2400 to burn well. I load 2400 in 357 and 45 colt aleady and it seems like it has to get well above 22-25k before it really burns well.
     
  2. zxcvbob

    zxcvbob Member

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    might work with 200 grain bullets, but other than that you need faster powder. Power Pistol is about the slowest powder I'd use.
     
  3. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I tried 2400 in the .38 Special with a 158gr LSWC and it did not work out well. When keeping the pressure within the limits of the .38 Special 2400 did not burn well. It left unburnt powder and carbon all over the place including under the ejector. It's just not a good idea IMO.
     
  4. beatledog7

    beatledog7 Member

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    ljnowell,

    Curiosity, not criticism: why do you want to use 2400 in .38SPL when there are plenty of fast powders that are proven .38SPL performers?
     
  5. Hondo 60
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    Hondo 60 Member

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    2400 is too slow for my tastes.
    I don't think that would work out too well in 38 spl.

    Lotsa guys use 2400 for 357 magnum.

    Just checked & Alliant does NOT list data for 38 spl.
    Which means they don't think it's a good idea either.
     
  6. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    Works great for .38-44 level loads but keep those out of your K-38. Run the pressures into standard .38Spl ranges and you'll have a lot of unburned powder.
     
  7. easyrider6042004@yahoo.ca

    easyrider6042004@yahoo.ca Member

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    Seems like you want to try medium pressure .357 loads in .38 spl cases. This is nothing new, although no factory condones it. I have not done this myself, or maybe I will start and end with 12 grains 2400. This goes with the usual kaboom warnings and personally I will not go more than 12 grains, but if you really want to load .38 spl brass to almost magnum pressures, you could start at 12 grains 2400 under a 158 grain JHP in a .38 spl case, increasing by .2 grain increments to 13.5 grains. Look at this chart, go down the page past the halfway mark....http://www.handloads.com/loaddata/d...&Weight=All&type=Handgun&Order=Powder&Source=

    158gr LSWC, 13.5 gr 2400, 1,301 fps, CCI SP guest
    This is one of Elmer Keith’s tradional loads. The Oregon Trails Laser Cast bullet was seated in the upper crimping groove with a taper crimp.


    Admin note: This is a very hot load that should only be used in 357 Magnum revolvers

    Email author: Paul5388
    See all of Paul5388's loads


    I agree this is a very hot load since my favorite 357 magnum load is just half a grain more at 14 grains 2400 under the same bullet.

    If you want to economize on powder cost, you may want to try 4.6 grains Titegroup or 700x under 158 grain LSWC. My seat of the pants (this bad boy kicks like a mid-range .357 mag) velocity guess should be between 1050 - 1,090 fps out of a 6 inch GP100, since my 4.3 grain loads are 990 to 1,020 fps chrono'd. Definitely in the +P+ range.

    Or try 3.8 grains Clays, another very nice shooting +P+ load.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2012
  8. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    Those loads were developed in an N Frame revolver...not in a K-frame. Skeeter Skelton worked up the 13.5 grain data in .38 Special cases for use in a Model 27 by using a mould that dropped a bullet with two crimp grooves, and seating to the bottom groove. He did that because .357 brass was scarce.

    Loaded to safe .38 pressures...even +P...2400 doesn't burn well, and produces erratic velocities as well as a lot of unburned powder.
     
  9. 4895

    4895 Member

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    2400 and 38 don't belong in the same sentence, much less the same cartridge.
     
  10. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    Those loads were probably developed because N-frame .357 cylinders are not long enough for bullets like Keiths 173gr SWC seated in .357 cases.


    Hogwash, Keith's 173gr semi-wadcutter over 13.5gr 2400 is the classic .38-44 load. This load has been in constant use in appropriate sixguns for ~80yrs. Perfectly safe for heavy framed .38Spl's like S&W N-frames, Colt SAA's, USFA SAA's, Colt New Service and any .357Mag revolver.
     
  11. ljnowell

    ljnowell Member

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    Thats kind of what I expected to hear from others who had done it. I have used it in 45 colt loadings that in 38 special pressure ranges and it was filthy. Lots of unburned powder.

    I'm not really wanting to Beatledog. To be honest, I use power pistol and AA#2 in my 38 loads, depending on what I am trying to do. I have always seen this load data for 2400 and was bored, thought it might make a good conversation.

    I use 2400 exclusively as my magnum powder. In both 357 and 45 colt(ruger only loads). I have seen published data from several years back using 2400, and there is a large amount online. Like I said above, its not that I really want to, I was looking to hear from others who had done so.
     
  12. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    That's exactly why I tried it, I had a lot of data from older books. I don't know what they were thinking but like I said above, it was really bad. I made up 50 rounds and I think I still have a half box of them laying around my reloading room somewhere! LOL
     
  13. 1911Tuner

    1911Tuner Moderator Emeritus

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    Skeeter was using a 160-grain mold. His stated reasons were due to .357 brass being scarce, while .38 was plentiful. In .357 cases, he seated the same bullet to crimp in the forward groove with 14.5 grains 2400.
     
  14. CraigC
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    CraigC Member

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    Thanks for clarifying. ;)
     
  15. Clark

    Clark Member

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    "Speer 6" 1964 38 s&w special 160 gr. soft point 11 gr. 2400

    Midway "Load map" 1999 357 mag Speer 160 gr. soft point 10.9 gr. 2400

    What does it all mean?
    To find the 38 special 2400 load, take the 357 mag load and add 0.1 gr..... NOT!
     
  16. PapaG

    PapaG Member

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    Works really well in 38 spec. cases: Lyman 358156 gc, Skeeter's load of 2400 and crimped in the bottom crimp groove. For 357 revolvers, however.
    I've used 2400 in 38s and found Unique to work better for the same velocity goals.
     
  17. Wil Terry

    Wil Terry Member

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    ALLIANT'S 2400 is nothing short of being the most superb of ALL propellents in the 38/44.There is NOTHING else that'll do what it does at the low pressures it'll operate at IF you know what you are doing. I have tested 'em all in 38SPL guns in 2", 3", 4", 5", 5 1/2", 6and 8 3/8". Futhermore, I have tested all of the loads in a pressure gun.

    IT does NOT do anything to speak of at the standard pressures of the 38S&WSPECIAL cartridge. IT WAS NOT DESIGNED TO DO SO.

    And nothing, NOTHING, will do what INFALLIBLE will do in 38SPL+P loads at SAAMI pressure specifications.
     
  18. 918v

    918v Member

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    You can use 2400 in a 38 Special. Ken Waters did it. Did not run it hot. It behaved like H110 in a 357. Lotsa flash and a big boom. You can do the same with Power Pistol and alot more published current load data.

    I like Bullseye myself, and IMR PB.
     
  19. zxcvbob

    zxcvbob Member

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    Isn't Unique the same thing as Infallible? (which was discontinued about 50 years ago)
     
  20. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Member

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    Because I have been using it for so long, I find it hard to beat Unique in stout loads for the 38 Special. Alliant 2400 is just too problematic for many of the firearms that is chambered in 38 Spec, as it will not burn clean without going +P loads.


    NCsmitty
     
  21. Peter M. Eick

    Peter M. Eick Member

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    I don't think infallible is the same as unique. I believe they were different size grains but I am going by memory. I have not seen/handled any in at least 25 years.
     
  22. Wil Terry

    Wil Terry Member

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    INFALLIBLE WAS NOT DISCONTINUED 50 YEARS AGO !! It is still available to ammunition manufacturers [ ONLY ] as nothing else will do what it does in it's burning range, and the maunufactureers have the pressure testing equipment to load it correctly as it is not a " cannister " propellent.
    And so it goes...
     
  23. Peter M. Eick

    Peter M. Eick Member

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    Sir,

    How would one go about actually obtaining and purchasing the pressure testing equipment necessary to load a non-canister propellant like Infallible?

    I am just curious if this is say a $10,000 or $100,000 or even a $1,000,000 investment to get the hardware to do this?

    I think I have a reasonable idea, and I think I have a reasonable guess at the investment but I am curious how close I am.
     
  24. fecmech

    fecmech Member

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    I think it's quite a bit cheaper through Oehler with their Model 43 pressure testing system
     
  25. gamestalker

    gamestalker member

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    Clark, I always enjoy your posts. I don't know anyone who deliberately blows guns up just for the sake of finding the maximum pressure it can take.
    Love your stuff Sir!
    GS
     
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