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Old 04-24-2011, 03:07 AM
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Default 357 Mag 125gr Factory Duplication

I needed to edit the pics once again, and while doing so, I wanted to include some additional information. Since originally posting this, I've discovered that one can easily duplicate, or exceed somewhat, the factory velocities recorded here using Alliant's new powder 300-MP. With the listed charge of 22.3grs from Alliant's website, I was able to get 1428 fps out of a 4" 686 with a 125gr bullet.

Now a word of caution. I was able to get 22.3grs into a Winchester case with just enough room to seat a 125gr bullet. However, when attempting this with a Remington case, I was only able to get 21.5grs in the case and still had enough room to seat the bullet. I have not tried this load in any other brand of cases.
Here is a target;



Notice I used a CCI500 primer, recommended by Alliant, and got factory quality standard deviation.



Hello again..

While I’m waiting on warmer weather for the rest of the .38 Special trial, I’d thought I would pick on some .357 Mag 125gr factory load duplication and see what happens. It’s still on the cool side here, 40s and 50s, so I was wondering what I would have to do to duplicate the factory velocity and, if I would run into the same temperature sensitivity as I did with the .38’s.

38 Spcl Factory Dup. phase 2

I started out wanting to duplicate the Rem-UMC 125gr JSP load, so I chose the Sierra 125gr JSP for load testing.



Included in the trial is some Speer 125gr Gold Dots.
The Gold Dots actually shoot very well out of my 4” 686, but the Rem’s are faster.

First thing is to see what is inside these loads.

The Remington UMC 125gr JSP;



Powder charge is 19.5grs of a ball powder;



The Speer GD load;



has a charge of ball powder weighing 20.8grs.



Both Speer and Rem bullets weighed 125grs. No surprise there..

Well, here’s what I came up with..



Now bear in mind, a lot of this was shooting low today.

Target 1 and 2 are the factory loads. As you can see, the GD load groups nicely, but the RemUMC load, not so well..
However both velocities are well into the 1300’s even on a cool day.

20.8 grs of something = 1339 fps and
19.5 grs of something = 1383 fps

Also you can see the velocities of these loads, many of which are right out of the books as max, lag a little behind the factory loads.
None of the loads shot today showed any kind of pressure signs. The cases fell out of the chambers and all the primers looked normal.

The only technical problem I ran into was when my luck ran out and the rain started, the skyscreens must have gotten wet as I got some erroneous readings on the chrono. This occurred when I was shooting the last group loaded with 2400, target 19. The only readings that made sense were two around 1260 fps.

Last week I shot a group with a Magtech 125gr JHP ahead of 16.6 grs 2400 in a little cooler temp, which shot very nicely;
As a side note, I was able to safely work up to 17.5 grs of 2400, but I noticed that velocity stopped increasing after 16.6grs. in the 4" 686. So there was not point in using any more than that in the 4" barrel.



So again, it will be interesting to re-shoot this in warmer weather.

Next time out I shot some additional groups and kicking things up a little bit;



Got a nice increase in velocity with N-110. A decrease with Blue Dot. And notice the velocity with 17.5grs of 2400 is the same as 16.6grs.

Here is Part 2;

357 Mag 125gr Factory Duplication Rd2


Last edited by RDub; 12-29-2018 at 12:07 PM.
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Old 04-24-2011, 06:22 AM
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Hmm. 17 and 18 grains of N-110; are you using magnum or regular primers? My data shows 16.4 as the maximum load, and I load mine to 16gr. even(but, with magnum primers). I'll have to chrono mine and see what it does(I use a 4" 686 also).

Thank you for posting this information.

Andy

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Old 04-24-2011, 11:35 AM
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Hmm. 17 and 18 grains of N-110; are you using magnum or regular primers? My data shows 16.4 as the maximum load, and I load mine to 16gr. even(but, with magnum primers). I'll have to chrono mine and see what it does(I use a 4" 686 also).

Thank you for posting this information.

Andy
Heya
CCI 500
Primers are listed on the target. V-V recommends standard primers with N-110 so that's what I tried.
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Old 04-24-2011, 11:39 AM
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Yep; my eyes failed me again -I see it now.

I talked with the fellows at Sierra, who used magnum primers with their testing of N-110. That's what they recommended to me. I guess we trust the pros, whichever ones we talk with, eh?

Andy

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Old 04-24-2011, 12:16 PM
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Well judging by the extreme spreads of the N-110 loads, it would appear that the powder is burning well. The ES was better than most other loads.
Having never used this powder until now, I wasn't real sure what to believe as far as max charge.. V-V on-line handgun data site,

Vihtavuori-Lapua.com

lists 18.4 grs of N-110 with a 125gr bullet, yet other manuals list something much less.. Even when using stardard primers as well.. Hmm.

But again, in warmer weather all this 'could' change drastically..

Last edited by RDub; 04-24-2011 at 12:19 PM.
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Old 04-15-2018, 06:49 PM
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Bump for some new information
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Old 04-15-2018, 09:09 PM
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Have you tried any H110/296 powder? It does well with max loads and should put you right where you want to be easily. I've seen in the past with it and with shooting up 3 lbs of 300MP is that it will do what 300MP will do with a little less powder charge. Hodgdon's load data shows 21.0 - 22.0 grains for H110 or 296 with Hornady 125 XTP bullets and mag primers.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:10 AM
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Yes. The first target, circle #4 shows 22.0grs 296 averaging 1199 fps. I've never been able to get much more than that out of a 4" barrel with this bullet weight and H-110 or 296, even in warmer weather. And yes magnum primers are required with these powders. 300-MP delivers 1400 fps consistently.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:19 AM
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I don't have much to say other than I appreciate the info! I hadn't even heard of 300-MP before this thread, so I've got some research to do.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:34 AM
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I never ran 296 and 300MP through a chrono with a 4" barrel that I remember, mostly 5" and 6 1/2" barrels and through a rifle. And I had some less than stellar experiences with 300MP when I first tried it with my old 5" 27-2; ran dirty as heck and didn't seem overly energetic either, but I didn't have a chrono then and that old 27 was needing a tuneup bad with some endshake and a good bit of throat erosion. I might have to give it another chance in revolvers. It ran real well in 44 Mag out of my Desert Eagle.

On your 296 loads, are you using a very heavy crimp? I've found that helps with 296 too.

Thanks for posting up your results. I don't shoot much in 125 grain any more; I shoot 140 and higher. But you've given me some data to look at here that makes me reassess using 300MP.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:37 AM
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Over the years I have shot a lot of 125gr JHP bullets out of 6" S&W revolvers.

In my newer 686 6" that I did a lot of testing in, I did well with the Winchester and Hornady bullets over all.
My best light 81% of maximum target loads were with W231 and CFE pistol powder that did around 1220fps.

SR4756 and 2400 at 1448 and 1502fps did best in the accuracy department at the full load area.
I don't have any slow ball powders.
The new BE86 shot well with the XTP JHP but the max loading only reached 1307fps, in my revolver
which fell a little short of my Unique powder tests, at 1355fps.

Maximum loads are nice now and then but I sure enjoy the accuracy
at the range or chasing jack rabbits with the lighter load at just 1200fps +/-
for a longer session of shooting.
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Old 04-16-2018, 10:40 PM
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Hello muddocktor
Yes the full power .357 loads get a heavy crimp.. as heavy as I would want to put on it.
Over the years I have seen a fairly wide variation in performance levels and likes and dis-likes with individual .357 revolvers.. So much so that I would never doubt for a minute how a particular gun performs with a particular load, and, I appreciate hearing about how other guns perform with different loads. Thanks.

Hey Nevada Ed nice hearing from you.
You are absolutely right about shooting max loads. When I go out shooting a revolver I usually reach for a mid-range cast or jacketed load. So much more enjoyable. And thanks for your comments.
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Old 12-29-2018, 12:10 PM
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Included a graph to make things easier to see..
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Old 12-29-2018, 09:55 PM
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I'd terminate this experiment. Hot 125 grain loads are known to cause top strap flame cutting, and forcing cone erosion.

Stick with 158 grains or heavier.
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Old 12-31-2018, 03:17 AM
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Thank you for your work and posts, always interesting reading.

I don't know why but your velocities always seem on the low side, I'm talking +/- 100fps per load.
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Old 12-31-2018, 03:22 AM
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Try 18.5gr of SMP-297
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Old 01-01-2019, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forrest r View Post
Thank you for your work and posts, always interesting reading.

I don't know why but your velocities always seem on the low side, I'm talking +/- 100fps per load.
Hello
I have to ask the question to correctly direct the conversation... Compared to what exactly?
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Old 01-01-2019, 12:48 PM
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I've had excellent results with L'il Gun and 158 grain bullets, but I just don't use the 125s, so I have no clue if light bullets and L'il Gun are a useful combo.
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Old 01-01-2019, 01:56 PM
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reply #16;

could not find that powder on the net.

297 ?

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Old 01-01-2019, 03:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDub View Post
Hello
I have to ask the question to correctly direct the conversation... Compared to what exactly?
I'm not a huge fan of the 125gr bullets by any means in the 38spl's or the 357's. 124/125gr bullets in the 9mm on the other hand are what I use +/- 99% of the time.

I have shot factory & my own reloads using 125gr jacketed bullets in the past. Used anything from 2" bbl.'s to 10" bbl.'s and still test with 2 1/2"/4" (2x)/6" (2x)/8" & 10" bbl.'s to this day.

Your use/test of the speer gd ammo (extremely popular) and there is a lot of tests/info out there with that ammo. A simple search will turn up results like these.
Pocket Guns and Gear: Speer Gold Dot .357 Magnum 125 Grain Clear Gel Test
https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/rev...llistics-test/
357 Magnum 20 Percent Ballistic Gelatin

I remember easily getting to the 1500fps range with several loads in the 4" bbl'd 357's with 125gr jacketed bullets. As you can see from the couple of links I posted, they are all in the 1400fps+ range with every day 4" bbl'd revolvers and the same speer 125gr hp ammo. I've followed several of your posts and your #'s just seem low to what I'm getting.
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Old 01-01-2019, 03:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RDub View Post
Hello
I have to ask the question to correctly direct the conversation... Compared to what exactly?
I'm not a huge fan of the 125gr bullets by any means in the 38spl's or the 357's. 124/125gr bullets in the 9mm on the other hand are what I use +/- 99% of the time.

I have shot factory & my own reloads using 125gr jacketed bullets in the past. Used anything from 2" bbl.'s to 10" bbl.'s and still test with 2 1/2"/4" (2x)/6" (2x)/8" & 10" bbl.'s to this day.

Your use/test of the speer gd ammo (extremely popular) and there is a lot of tests/info out there with that ammo. A simple search will turn up results like these.
Pocket Guns and Gear: Speer Gold Dot .357 Magnum 125 Grain Clear Gel Test
https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/rev...llistics-test/
357 Magnum 20 Percent Ballistic Gelatin

I remember easily getting to the 1500fps range with several loads in the 4" bbl'd 357's with 125gr jacketed bullets. As you can see from the couple of links I posted, they are all in the 1400fps+ range with every day 4" bbl'd revolvers and the same speer 125gr hp ammo. I've followed several of your posts and your #'s just seem low to what I'm getting.
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Univibe View Post
I'd terminate this experiment. Hot 125 grain loads are known to cause top strap flame cutting, and forcing cone erosion.

Stick with 158 grains or heavier.
WHAT PART OF THIS DON"T YOU UNDERSTAND
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:40 PM
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Have very much enjoyed this thread. Thank you for posting. Once upon a time when the world was a different place, I fiddled around a bit w/ 125 gr. JHP's loaded over various quantities of powder in .357 S&W Magnum cases. I was using a six inch 28-2. Fine fine revolver. Shot this revolver with loads that were hotter than the hinges of the theological place of eternal torment. By personal experience I can guarantee you that sooner or later that stuff will come back to bite you. I like to load stuff hot. But, now I take the loading data seriously rather than thinking of it as more like a suggestion.

So day the discussion will roll around to hot shot loads for the .30-06. Maybe I'll be able to find what I wrote down when I was seeing how much horsepower could be loaded under a 130 gr. JHP. Don't exactly remember any of the loads. Do remember that thing hitting anything from feral dogs to south Louisiana deer ... it was impressive. Sincerely. bruce.
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Old 01-01-2019, 07:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forrest r View Post
I'm not a huge fan of the 125gr bullets by any means in the 38spl's or the 357's. 124/125gr bullets in the 9mm on the other hand are what I use +/- 99% of the time.

I have shot factory & my own reloads using 125gr jacketed bullets in the past. Used anything from 2" bbl.'s to 10" bbl.'s and still test with 2 1/2"/4" (2x)/6" (2x)/8" & 10" bbl.'s to this day.

Your use/test of the speer gd ammo (extremely popular) and there is a lot of tests/info out there with that ammo. A simple search will turn up results like these.
Pocket Guns and Gear: Speer Gold Dot .357 Magnum 125 Grain Clear Gel Test
https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/rev...llistics-test/
357 Magnum 20 Percent Ballistic Gelatin

I remember easily getting to the 1500fps range with several loads in the 4" bbl'd 357's with 125gr jacketed bullets. As you can see from the couple of links I posted, they are all in the 1400fps+ range with every day 4" bbl'd revolvers and the same speer 125gr hp ammo. I've followed several of your posts and your #'s just seem low to what I'm getting.
Well there are a number of reasons for velocity discrepancies, like temperature, no two guns are exactly the same, and chronographs don't always agree with one another.
What chonograph do you use? What is the distance from muzzle to where velocity is read?
I have noticed that velocities I get are a little slower than a lot of data taken with the 'Chrony' type chronographs.
I had a rather in depth conversation with one of the techs at Oehler Research about this and he had a lot to say about this.. Most was a little over my head, but the gist of it was that the relatively short distance between sensors tends to error high, and also shooters tend to put the sensors too close to the muzzle which causes another issue. Ones whole investment is 'downrange' so putting it too far away isn't comfortable.
He also assured me that my Oehler product is a precision state of the art instrument and that as long as I do my part, as getting the spacing exactly correct, and keeping the unit shielded from muzzle blast, I will get precise, as precise as this instrument can be, velocity data.
I often think about a way to calibrate these things using sound that travels about 1133 fps depending on environment, and LED's that react to sound over the sensors. The velocity reading should be around 1133 fps.
I'm actually looking into the Doppler Radar technology available now.
The articles you forwarded did not indicate what product they were using, as least I didn't see it.

So it could be a slow gun, cold weather or any number of things. The only thing that is exact about this game, is it is not exact..
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Old 01-01-2019, 11:30 PM
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" top strap flame cutting....." quote;

Not all powders do this.
Just a few that are packed to the brim, and burn longer than a fast powder.

Plus these 100% loads are usually a "Specialty load" used in hunting
where you don't go through 500, in a years time.
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Old 01-02-2019, 12:12 AM
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Interesting information. Your presentations are great! I always enjoy them. Thank you!
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Old 01-02-2019, 07:24 AM
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Didn't mean anything by it, just seems your #'s are always low compared to what I'm getting with a chrony & competition electronics chronograph. Your #'s are also low compared to what I consider "reputable" sources like the brass fetcher link I posted above. Brass fetcher is an independent ballistics testing company.

Brass fetchet:
Brass Fetcher Ballistic Testing has been in commercial operation since 2011. It was initially started by myself as a hobby website while I was studying Mechanical Engineering at Florida State University. That was 2004 and I began my interest in studying terminal ballistics, that is, what a bullet does after it strikes a target. Most of the time, ballistic gelatin blocks were the target and these results were posted to the Internet and enjoyed wide distribution to the online firearms community.
Immediately upon graduating University, I went to work for the Unites States Army, Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey. There I was a Research and Development engineer in the Small Caliber Munitions group, where I worked on a variety of long-term terminal ballistics tests, weapon evaluations, redesigns, proprietary cartridge and projectile development. My service with ARDEC afforded me the opportunity to interact with countless dedicated people who are experts at their craft both at Picatinny Arsenal and at other Department of Defense Activities for a span of 4 years.
After employment with the US Government, Brass Fetcher Ballistic Testing was incorporated in the state of Florida and began to function as a commercial for-profit company. Today we provide third-party terminal ballistics testing solutions to Ammunition Developers, slow motion video footage to Film Libraries, Firearms owners and Historical Researchers. I am available to provide Expert Witness testimony in matters concerning bullet impacts and effects on human beings and inanimate objects.
Please take a moment to browse through our online database and view some of our work that we have done for other organizations.

I trust these peoples tests, when I'm in the same zip code as people like this or lucky gunner or handloader magazine. I'm confident in what I'm getting from the chronographs I use. I do understand the difference in firearms, heck even did a bunch of testing with bbl gaps. Kinda easy to do when you own a couple of dan Wesson 357's and several different bbl.'s/bbl lengths.

I'm not trying to steal your thunder, take away from what you do, or say anything negative by any means. I have the upmost respect for what you do and love all the posts/time you've taken to share your results. It's just that I find a lot of your testing on the low/slow side. I'm getting the same velocity's you're getting a lot of times out of a 2 1/2" bbl'd 586 l-comp. Couple that with +/- 100fps more out of a couple of 4" bbl'd dw bbl.'s.
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Old 01-02-2019, 10:49 PM
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Forrest R no offense was taken at all.. We're just talkin here.. and I appreciate the comments.
Thank you for introducing yourself. You have an interesting background.
I'm curious to know what kind of equipment does an organization like ARDEC use for testing..
I've been following Lucky Gunner for a while, but was not familiar with Brass Fetcher. Thanks for the heads up.

It could very well be that my Oehler unit reads slower. It's not the first time this possibility has been pondered. I have no way to dispute or verify this, as there isn't any measurable constant to calibrate to.
What I would hope is still valid, even though the points on the graph might be a little left, but their relationship with one another is still the same.
You have seen the 38 Spl 125gr JHP+P I posted recently I assume, so do those velocities seem slow also?
The Oehler folks have suggested I get the newer Skyscreen III's. They have better shielding they say. Over the years I have seen some strange anomalies with different chronographs due to blast exposure.
Just the other day I was chronographing some .357's out of a 2Ĺ" S&W 66 under a low roof I built for my shooting bench in the back of the house. It was quite noisy under that roof! The chronograph was reading half the velocity it should have been.. Blast anomalies.. Moved the unit further away from the blast and it read more realistically.
So I think I'm going to get some new skyscreens and see what happens.

It would be an interesting experiment to get several different chrono's and set them up to measure the same round at the same time.

Back in the 70's I had a 4" model 28. Thing was massive..

Thanks again for the comments..

Last edited by RDub; 01-02-2019 at 10:51 PM.
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