When is a barrel too short for a .357 magnum?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by jski, Sep 1, 2018.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Sixgun Nut

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    20,247
    Location:
    West Tennessee
    Usually because you need a little more of it. ;)
     
    gotboostvr likes this.
  2. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2007
    Messages:
    3,971
    Or a little more crimp.
     
    CraigC likes this.
  3. DPris

    DPris Member Emeritus

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Messages:
    5,488
    I've done both.
    Still get unburned flakes.
    Denis
     
  4. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2007
    Messages:
    3,971
    If you gather up a bunch of the flakes, can you actually burn them? They might actually be burnt, but just holding their shape
     
  5. DPris

    DPris Member Emeritus

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Messages:
    5,488
    I've never tried to re-burn.
    I just patch 'em out when I clean after shooting, and everything goes in the garbage.
    It's not a LOT of flakes, just enough to be noticeable.
    Denis
     
  6. labnoti

    labnoti Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2018
    Messages:
    1,892
    Yeah, I can see an exception if you're Jerry Miculek and you're going for the last hundreth of a second on the timer, but if you're close to setting a world record, I don't think you'd be looking for advice on Youtube.
     
    .308 Norma likes this.
  7. dickydalton

    dickydalton Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2012
    Messages:
    1,618
    Location:
    New Mexico
    That all is true to a point but, that wasn't the OP's question.
     
    .308 Norma likes this.
  8. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2007
    Messages:
    3,971
    Give it a shot, more likely than not they're completely burnt.

    I had something similar with 4227 which is even slower burning with real light charges but they were burnt.
     
  9. FROGO207

    FROGO207 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2008
    Messages:
    9,917
    Location:
    Mount Desert Island Maine
    I used to use light loads of Blue Dot in 38 spl ammo and there were a lot of flakes left over on the bench and floor. I swept up a couple tablespoons of them and went outdoors with a long necked lighter. A direct flame would not ignite the pile it just sat there. Fresh Blue Dot WOULD burn though :eek: when I tried it later at home.
     
    .308 Norma likes this.
  10. HB

    HB Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Messages:
    2,280
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    I can’t imagine. When I fire my 642 more than a cylinder or 2 I generally wear work gloves. This is with a 158 swc or lrn loaded to max or a little over and HP38. It seemed like universal kicked less, but enough to make my hand numb with extensive shooting.
     
  11. CopperFouling

    CopperFouling Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,038
    Location:
    Midwest
    If I were shooting a .357 Magnum in a short barrel, I would look for the heaviest bullet possible to mitigate the loss in velocity.

    At any rate, you're still going to have a heck of a flash if you shoot one at night (in all fairness, a .357 Magnum fired at night from just about any length of barrel has a pretty noticeable flash). The one below is a 3" Ruger SP101 shooting handloads using 2400.

    DSC04091.JPG
     
    robhof, adcoch1, RA40 and 6 others like this.
  12. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Messages:
    12,650
    Cool picture.
     
    adcoch1 and CopperFouling like this.
  13. Indigo22

    Indigo22 Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2003
    Messages:
    134
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    I am currently shooting up to 158gr jacketed FP's from my .357 without any issues, but then the service six is quite heavy.
    hnogju0l.jpg
    But if I were to give the 180gr BB or the equivalent either I would have gloves on or I would want my Herrett grips on.
    mFI3H5ll.jpg
    Stock grips without the T-grip installed my hand did ache the following day after 20 rounds of the prior mentioned .357's.
    I don't think I would want to go any shorter than the 2 3/4" or lighter in weight.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Sep 3, 2018
  14. jski

    jski Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2016
    Messages:
    1,280
    Location:
    Florida
    IMG_0057.JPG

    Alright guys, let me be very clear, are use saying, if your intended pistol were a .357 S&W 686 with a 3" barrel (like the pistol above) you would load your ammo with H110 as opposed to True Blue despite the fact that True Blue has a much faster burn rate?
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
  15. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2007
    Messages:
    3,971
    jski,
    If I wanted maximum velocity I'd use H110, 2400, Lil' Gun or 300-MP.

    Whatever is fastest in a longer barrel will be faster in a shorter barrel.
     
    BIG BEAR and .308 Norma like this.
  16. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Messages:
    12,650
    Yes. Deductive reasoning also would indicate that if the barrel length had an impact on which powder was used with short barrels, reload data would be published for more than one test gun, one long, and one short. None of the 7 manuals I use does this. They list recipes with particular bullet, powder, and primer combos. The best performers are the best performers as far as I understand it.

     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
    gotboostvr and .308 Norma like this.
  17. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Sixgun Nut

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    20,247
    Location:
    West Tennessee
    ^^^ What he said!
     
    .308 Norma likes this.
  18. .308 Norma

    .308 Norma Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2016
    Messages:
    3,209
    Location:
    SE Idaho
    It depends, and yes, it is counterintuitive - at least to me it is.:)
    If I wanted more muzzle flash, more noise, and higher velocity, I'd use H110 or 2400.
    If I wanted less muzzle flash, less noise, and lower velocity, I'd use True Blue or Unique.
    Beautiful 357 jski.:)
     
  19. jski

    jski Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2016
    Messages:
    1,280
    Location:
    Florida
    Alright guys, when would you use True Blue (or other powders of its ilk)?
     
  20. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Sixgun Nut

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    20,247
    Location:
    West Tennessee
    I use it in .460Rowland.
     
  21. earplug

    earplug Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    Messages:
    2,005
    Location:
    Colorado Springs
    Not one commit on muzzle flash or blast with a short barrel .357. I call the line at 4"
    Any shorter and its to much punishment for me to pull the trigger.
    Then there is the issue to having a holster that will anchor a short barreled revolver while your caring it around. Yes I know some of you carry J frames .357 REM MAG and are happy with busting your hand and wrist bones with micro fractures.
    Sight radius?
     
    Mosin Bubba likes this.
  22. CopperFouling

    CopperFouling Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2013
    Messages:
    1,038
    Location:
    Midwest
    Thanks! I wish my photographer had captured the entire blast, but I wasn't about to shoot a couple dozen of those .357s through that SP101 to get it perfect. For such a heavy little revolver, it beat me up with those loads.
     
    460Shooter likes this.
  23. 1MoreFord

    1MoreFord Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    399
    Location:
    Central Arkansas
    My .357's are both 4" and I once had a 3" Charter Arms. Nothing shorter than that for me and I prefer the 4" Smiths I still have.
     
  24. TTv2

    TTv2 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2016
    Messages:
    2,905
    I've seen a lot of videos and read a lot of writings lately of .357 short barrels, 9mm snubs, .38+P, .327, etc. etc. and here's my thoughts of compiling that knowledge and thinking it all over:

    For .357, my cut off is 2 inches. Anything 2 and under is suspect to be more light and noise than velocity and for what you lose in that (control, follow up shots, disorientation) it's not worth it. Yes, there are loads with low flash powders and such, but the barrels are so short, you're still getting flash and likely with low flash, you're also getting lower velocity.

    You want a 2 inch or shorter revolver? Shoot .38+P or better yet, get a .327. Why do I say that instead of 9mm? Because I don't trust 9mm in a revolver and the way the bullets are crimped or the moon clips. Yes, 9mm is cheap and it's great for a BUG to a 9mm pistol, and if a BUG is desired (which it is for me) I'd then say yet, but for primary carry? No sir, a standard revolver cartridge is better.

    Paul Harrell's video was very good, but from the data I've seen, the .357 takes a big hit going from 2.25 to 1.875 inch barrels. Paul did not use a sub 2 inch barrel, I assume he didn't have one or he doesn't believe that 3/8" less of barrel doesn't make a difference, but it does when you consider how short the barrels are. 3/8" less is almost a 17% reduction in barrel length, so potentially you can lose 17% of your velocity OR MORE! When we're talking 1000, 1100, or 1200 fps, that's close to possibly being 200 fps LESS!

    For anything over 2 inches, it's .357. It seems .357 just needs a bit over 2 inch to be effective with most ammo. Personally, I would prefer 3 inches for .357, but the question of the topic is "When is the barrel too short for .357?" and I've answered that.

    For as much data is out there, I'm with Jeb Stuart: I'm sick to death of all the numbers and BS. Take a gun, go to the range, and shoot. I don't want to shoot .357 snubs because I know I can't shoot .357 snubs, so I don't shoot .357 snubs and won't buy any .357 snubs so I don't consider .357 snubs for carrying.

    Maybe I could shoot 9mm snubs better, but again, I don't trust them for primary carry. .38's are the standard for snub revolvers, but I believe the .38 is rendered obsolete compared to the .327 Magnum for self defense considering the distances I'd be shooting from and the extra round in the cylinder. For self defense, you don't need the heavy 158 grain bullet, unless you're living in Alaska, not when an 85 grain .327 at 1300 fps does plenty of damage and is very controllable.

    *inhales*

    I don't want to put so much faith on one extra round, but fact is that it could be that one round that can stop a threat and save your life or someone else's life. A .38 is better than nothing, but if after 5 shots you haven't stopped the threat or threats and you've had to take an extra 5 or 10 seconds to reload... a life can be severely damaged or end in that time.
     
  25. jski

    jski Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2016
    Messages:
    1,280
    Location:
    Florida
    To barrow a line from my favorite movie, "A Man For All Seasons":

    WOLSEY: "I don't like plodding, Thomas, don't make me plod longer than I have to- Well?"

    So let me plod along a little further, when would you use True Blue (or powders of its ilk, i.e., fast burners) in a .357 load?
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  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