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Powder for 38spl range use

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by sparkyguy, Feb 11, 2008.

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  1. sparkyguy

    sparkyguy member

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    I am now waiting for my Lee classic turret press and the 38spl/357 deluxe dies I bought from ebay. I have been saving my brass for the last few years, I have about 2k between 38spl and 357 mag. Also, I've got some 158gr LWC's on the way from gunbroker and some Winchester small pistol primers on the way as well. I was wondering what kind of powder is the all-around norm for loading 38spl with these bullets and possibly some lighter flat-nose bullets. Any help would be appreciated.

    P.S. I do plan on buying some reloading manuals and reading up before any reloading is done.
     
  2. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Lots of powders will do. Bullseye, AA #2, & W-231 are probably some of the more popular ones. I am sure folks will suggest their favorites.
     
  3. floydster

    floydster Member

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    I am also just starting to load for the 38 Special and the 357 mag, I plan on using Bullseye and Unique and see how i like it, they seem to be very versatile
    powders
    Floydster
     
  4. cdrt

    cdrt Member

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    A pound of Bullseye will go a long way in the .38 Special. You can load the std target load of 2.7 grains with either the 148 WC or 158 SWC/RN bullets, which comes out to over 2500 rounds.
     
  5. jfh

    jfh Member

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    Those three powders--#2. Bullseye, and 231--are good for light-to-medium loads, and arguably higher, maybe. For higher-velocity / more power, check out Power Pistol. For loads at or near max of 38+P, my favorite is AA#5--so far.

    Jim H.
     
  6. tbtrout

    tbtrout Member

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    I like 231 and Trail Boss
     
  7. SR_

    SR_ Member

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    I started reloading .38 Special and my reloading mentor suggested Titegroup.

    Some people like powder that fills up the cases making it impossible to have a double charge. I use a progressive press so the chance of a double charge is pretty remote.
     
  8. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    sparkyguy,
    My opinion is that Winchester 231 is probably the best powder for .38 Special target rounds. Clays is very good to but it doesn't meter well at the low charge weights used in a .38 Special light load.

    If your bullets are 148gr LWC I would suggest a charge of 3.5gr W231.
    If your bullets are 158gr LSWC I would suggest a charge of 3.4gr W231.

    I use those recipes for my target rounds and they produce very clean accurate target ammo.
     
  9. evan price

    evan price Member

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    3.5 grains of Titegroup under a 158-LSWC for .38 spl. Good ammo.
     
  10. IDriveB5

    IDriveB5 Member

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    I like 4.2gn W231 under a Berry's 158 RN. Soft, accurate, clean.
     
  11. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    IDriveB5,
    If that Berry's bullet is Cast then the load you recommended is anything but "soft." I know the companies are now publishing anemic load data but Winchester /Hodgdon lists the charge for a 158gr Cast bullet with W231 as 3.1gr Min and 3.7gr Max. Now I know you will site a manual telling me 4.2gr W231 is listed and it's probably safe but it's no where near "Soft." A charge of 3.4gr W231 like I suggested is a soft load that will be ~800 fps.
     
  12. sparkyguy

    sparkyguy member

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    I was wondering about those contradictory numbers myself.:what: I don't want to blow up my S&W mdl 64 with higher amounts of gp, please. Although I would check and dbl check any advice given, my normal response would be to load lighter rather then heavier.;)
     
  13. K3

    K3 Member

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    4.0 gr of 700-X works pretty well with a 125gr jacketed bullet.
     
  14. hawkeye1

    hawkeye1 Member

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    I use W231 for all my pistol rounds. It works well in all of them.

    good shooting
     
  15. marcodo

    marcodo Member

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    w231 and tightgroup for low to mod power (target/plinking) 38's
    unique for hot 38's and mod 357's
    h110/w296 hot 357's
     
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