Best FACTORY 158 grain load for S&W Model 19

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by rs525, Jun 16, 2022.

  1. rs525

    rs525 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2021
    Messages:
    157
    I just got a Smith and Wesson Model 19-4 2.5" Snub Nose and hope to eventually get a 4" one. I do plan on shooting mostly .38 special out of it but I do want to occasionally fire .357 Magnum (what's the point of getting a .357 magnum if you're not going to shoot .357s). I'm not interested in 125 grain since I hear they're no good for the Model 19 and potentially have more recoil depending on who you ask (seems to be a YMMV thing).
    I was wondering for those who have a Model 19, what's the best 158 grain .357 Magnum load for range use? Something right in the middle, not too hot to be unbearable but not too mild to be considered more of a .38 +P load. And it has to be a Factory load, not a hand load as I do not hand load my own ammo.
     
  2. Pat Riot
    • Contributing Member

    Pat Riot Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2015
    Messages:
    5,246
    Location:
    West Virginia
    I shoot this load in my model 19-4 occasionally. It’s very accurate from my 19 as well as my GP100 and S&W 327 Night Guard.

    158 grain X-Treme copper plated bullet
    Small Magnum Pistol Primers
    6.1 grains Winchester 244 powder

    I have also loaded 6.2 grains of W244 with standard small pistol primers.

    W244 is a very clean shooting powder at the upper end of the load recipes for .357, .38 Spl, 9mm and .45 Colt.

    The info can be found here:
    https://www.hodgdonreloading.com/reloading-data-center?rdc=true&type=53

    Screen shot of the loads on the Hodgdon website.
    77846E8C-8410-4DA6-98A0-486080ED8AF2.png
     
    wcwhitey likes this.
  3. Targa

    Targa Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2019
    Messages:
    1,083
    ^^^OP doesn’t hand load. I’m sorry to say that I think you are going to be pretty limited in commercial offerings, unless something new has been developed over the years its either .38spl, +p or .357 mag. With that said, I haven’t bought commercial ammo in a very long time so I might be speaking out of line.
     
  4. NeroM

    NeroM Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Corner of Know and Where
    OP inquired about moderate 158 gr loadings for 357 mag.
    A few editions ago of the Speer loading manual suggested in 38 Spl 140 gr bullets offered the best balance of velocity and performance. This has been good guidance for me. So when I conjure up moderate 357 loads - I use a 140 gr TCFP bullet. Launch them with around 8 gr Herco sparked by cci550 primers. This yields about 1200 fps, is consistent, easy on your gun and fairly effective.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2022
  5. 357 Terms
    • Contributing Member

    357 Terms Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2010
    Messages:
    1,233
    Location:
    Indiana
    Many commercial 357 158grn range/practice loads are kinda in the 1200fps range, which really isn't all that hot for 357.
    Look at loads in that velocity range, may be hard to find nowadays, but there are many examples.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2022
    Targa and Slamfire like this.
  6. Up North

    Up North Member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2019
    Messages:
    61
    My favorite mid range load is 6.5gr herco with a158gr swc. Accurate and moderate recoil. Of course alliant powders are hard to get unless you know shotgun reloaders who will share or trade.
     
  7. wcwhitey

    wcwhitey Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,239
    Same bullet only 6.0 grains of Win244. Tack driver and bellow mellow.
     
  8. Pat Riot
    • Contributing Member

    Pat Riot Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2015
    Messages:
    5,246
    Location:
    West Virginia
    @rs525
    Sorry, I didn’t see the part where you were looking for factory loads.
     
    Targa and wcwhitey like this.
  9. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    Messages:
    12,036
    Location:
    Alabama
    You are either going to have to use factory 38 Special +P or roll your own. I don't know of any manufacturer making light loads for the 357 Magnum, as everyone wants huge fireballs at the end of their muzzle.
     
    cfullgraf likes this.
  10. rs525

    rs525 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2021
    Messages:
    157
    Also is Semi Jacketed Soft Point or Full Metal Jacket better for target shooting/easier on a revolver? Or are they both good? I think I may have have found a factory load that's relatively available and affordable.
     
  11. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

    Joined:
    May 25, 2005
    Messages:
    4,402
    Location:
    Colorado Front Range
    I would try to source some 158 gr hardcast LSWC or plated LFN by secondary tier manufacturers like HSM or Georgia Arms. Good ammo, usually a bit mild for .357, and better pricing than the big boys.
     
  12. 357 Terms
    • Contributing Member

    357 Terms Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2010
    Messages:
    1,233
    Location:
    Indiana
    Either will work for range use, and be cheaper than HP.
     
  13. Buckeye63

    Buckeye63 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2018
    Messages:
    1,622
  14. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2010
    Messages:
    10,408
    Location:
    South Eastern Illinois
    I shoot Federal 158gr jsp
     
  15. rs525

    rs525 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2021
    Messages:
    157
  16. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2013
    Messages:
    8,188
    Location:
    Ca.
    Remington used to catalog a jhp 158 gr mid-range load that would be about what you ask for. I don’t know who else offers a mid-range .357 load anymore ( or if they could even be found).

    Good luck with your search.

    Stay safe.
     
    Slamfire, rs525 and LaneP like this.
  17. stonebuster

    stonebuster Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2016
    Messages:
    1,694
    Location:
    northeast
    As a relatively new reloader of two years I'd suggest you consider reloading. 357 & 38spl are probably the easiest to reload. Even at current inflated component prices I can make them for $12-15/50 and enjoy doing it. My 357 plinking load is 158gr Xtreme RNFP(copper plated) over 6.4gr HP-38 w/ SPP. Sorry I can't help with your question but though I shoot @ 400 357 & 38 per month I don't buy factory ammo for range use anymore.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2022
  18. LaneP

    LaneP Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2019
    Messages:
    1,132
    Remington Performance Wheelgun ammo is a 158gr LSWC rated at 1235 fps, but it's pricey (most factory is though). The next challenge will be finding it. I know you don't reload but if there were ever a good time to start, loading for a .357 would be a good excuse. An extremely versatile cartridge suited to a wide range of bullet weights.
     
  19. NeroM

    NeroM Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2019
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Corner of Know and Where
    Dear RS....
    I know you indicated that you don't reload, interested in mid range factory loads.
    Looked at a couple online retailers for 357 ammo, few loads actually in stock for immediate shipment- lowest.price was around $1.60 per round - none mid range (less expensive ammo was listed, but not in stock)
    Once you start shooting 357 or.38spl - keep the empties (perhaps you are already doing this?).
    A simple basic reloading kit costs about $200 - attached pics have previously posted this.
    Once you get the kit, start depriming your cases - just as an exercise is getting familiar with reloading. If any cases are tarnished, rub them with a little very fine.steel wool to clean them. With a small screwdriver - clean the primer pocket. During this time - get the other components - bullets, powder and primers. Some good load suggestions were listed above, plus Alliant and Hodgdon on line manuals are a good info source. I like the Herco powder, as it is fairly bulky filling a lot of the case. This helps give consistent ignition and makes it impossible to double charge the case. However, Herco is real hard to fine right now. Other good powders are available. Same with primers, might have to search a little to get small pistol primers. Bullets are generally available - in 357 mid loads I use the so called Zinger coated bullet from Missouri Bullet - there are a number of good bullets out there.
    Right now, primers are about $0.12 each. A pound of powder approx $50- should be able to yield 700-1000 loads from a pound - call it $0.07 for the powder. The bullet Is around $0.19 each - so think of a reload costing $0.40 each. Compare this to factory load costs - once started hand loading - you will save approx $1.00 per round. ROI on the loading kit is 200 cartridges, plus you can optimize the load you want to your gun. No better time to start than .... NOW !
    IMG_20211223_075327_burst_01.jpg
     
    Slamfire and stonebuster like this.
  20. rs525

    rs525 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2021
    Messages:
    157
    I understand the benefits of reloading, I just don't have the time or money to invest in it and it's a hassle.
     
  21. Speedo66

    Speedo66 Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2008
    Messages:
    9,420
    Location:
    Flatlandistan
    Some of the foreign .357 loads seem to be pretty mild, I'm thinking of PPU and Fiocchi.
     
    Riomouse911 likes this.
  22. Nullcone

    Nullcone Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Messages:
    184
    Location:
    AZ
    CCI Blazer should be about right for you... ~1200fps and as a non-reloader the aluminum cases shouldn't matter. HTH
     
    wcwhitey likes this.
  23. wcwhitey

    wcwhitey Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,239
    I was actually just thinking about that. Any Blazer I have ever shot has not been on the top end of the Hot scale. Anything PRVI Partizan has been mild for me as well.
     
  24. Pat Riot
    • Contributing Member

    Pat Riot Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2015
    Messages:
    5,246
    Location:
    West Virginia
  25. rs525

    rs525 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2021
    Messages:
    157
    Pat Riot likes this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice