Smith & Wesson Forum

Go Back   Smith & Wesson Forum > Ammunition-Gunsmithing > Reloading
Forum Register Expert Commentary Members List


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11-16-2012, 01:22 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Southern California
Posts: 299
Likes: 8
Liked 21 Times in 19 Posts
Default 148 gr Wadcutter in the 357.

So far I have been loading Xtreme 148 gr DEWC into 357 cases by working up from 38 +P data. I've reach 4.8 gr and each subsequent increase in powder charge seem to have an improvement in accuracy. I'd like to try a little larger charge and there are no pressure signs but I've been getting bit nervous about a handgun powder in such a small space. However, I was looking through a 2004 Alliant catalog and I found the following load data for the 148 gr LWC using Bullseye powder:

148 gr LWC
5.7 gr Bullseye
Min OAL 1.33"
1,475 fps from 5.6" bbl
34,000 PSI

Obviously that is a maximum load and should be reduced by at least 10% to start. Still even a 10% reduction is 5.1 gr which larger than I have tried so far.

Has anyone here experimented with a load like the above? Is so, how well did it perform?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 11-16-2012, 01:34 PM
max max is offline
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: illinois
Posts: 3,328
Likes: 202
Liked 799 Times in 345 Posts
Default

I gotta wonder if their LWC is the same as your DEWC? I always load DEWC's on the light side.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 11-16-2012, 02:11 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Northeast Ohio
Posts: 4,150
Likes: 2,536
Liked 1,547 Times in 832 Posts
Default

148 grain HBWC (HOLLOW BASED WAD CUTTERS) are loaded lighter,
or you'll risk blowing the skirt off and it remaining inside the barrel.

They are SWEDGED BULLETS made from softer alloy.

NOT A GOOD THING FOR FOLLOW UP SHOTS!

DEWC are usually a CASTING from a harder alloy and can be pushed harder.

DEWC'S look like a little SOUP CAN, (no hollow base).

Wadcutters are mostly used for target work, why push so hard?

PENN BULLETS has 38 Special DEWC rated at up 900 feet per second,
target charge of 2.7 grains of Bullseye is the STANDARD TARGET LOADING IN A 38 SPECIAL CASE.

He has Target 158 grain SEMI-WADCUTTERS rated to 950 feet per second,

The 158 grain Semi-Wadcutters in MATCH ALLOY are rated to 1600 feet per second.

X-Treme Bullets lists the 148 grain W.C. in PLATED .357 DIA. and Hard Cast .358 DIA. Variety.
__________________
NRA Pistol/Rifle Inst. RSO

Last edited by Moonman; 11-16-2012 at 02:21 PM. Reason: more info
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 11-16-2012, 04:33 PM
Nevada Ed's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Reno Nv
Posts: 2,847
Likes: 28
Liked 832 Times in 535 Posts
Default

I have never put a HBwc or a BBwc in a .357 case..........seemed to be a waste of good brass.
I have loaded lots of 158 lead in the mag brass and the data
for a max load of Bullseys is 7.0 grains per an old Alliant manual and they show 3.5grs of bullseye with a 146gr Lwc bullet at 830fps............

I just think the little 148gr bullet does its best in a .38 special and the 158 Lead bullets work best for standard target loads in the .357 magnum, where the bullet jump from cylinder to barrel is kept minimal,for better accuracy.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 11-16-2012, 08:08 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Southern California
Posts: 299
Likes: 8
Liked 21 Times in 19 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonman View Post
Wadcutters are mostly used for target work, why push so hard?
Curiosity mostly. The accuracy seems to improve as I increase the charge and I was wondering how far that will hold.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 11-16-2012, 08:27 PM
bmcgilvray's Avatar
SWCA Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,219
Likes: 1,091
Liked 685 Times in 230 Posts
Default

A 148 grain bevel base wadcutter has some application for self-defense applications for those who admire the blunt nose and sharp shoulder of the bullet design.

I've loaded hollow base wadcutters in the .357 Magnum to create light target loads simply because I don't make a habit of using .38 Special cases in my .357 Magnum revolvers. 3.0 grains of Bulls-Eye makes for a good accurate load with a 148 grain hollow base wadcutter.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 11-16-2012, 10:33 PM
PDL's Avatar
PDL PDL is offline
US Veteran
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: NJ
Posts: 1,221
Likes: 314
Liked 68 Times in 27 Posts
Default

Not to be negative, but why are you screwing around with a 2004 manual. You obviously have computer access so ----
Alliant Powder - Reloader's Guide

Look at more current data. It may still be the same, but why guess.

As far as the accuracy improving as the charge increases, well that's what reloading is all about. The manuals are basic recipies. You need to see what works best in your firearms.

What are you looking for the WC's to do? Target, defense, bullseye matches.

Keep posting and reloading.
__________________
Pete.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 11-16-2012, 10:42 PM
venomballistics's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Escaped WI, Omaha NE
Posts: 5,455
Likes: 2,109
Liked 2,227 Times in 1,218 Posts
Default

WC's should be kept in the subsonic velocity range.
they tend to tumble otherwise.
in a 38 this is nearly non issue .. in 357 it can be frustrating
__________________
it just needs more voltage
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #9  
Old 11-17-2012, 12:03 AM
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Southern California
Posts: 299
Likes: 8
Liked 21 Times in 19 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by PDL View Post
Not to be negative, but why are you screwing around with a 2004 manual.
The current Alliant data doesn't list the 148 gr WC for anything but standard pressure 38 spl.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 11-17-2012, 01:18 AM
venomballistics's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Escaped WI, Omaha NE
Posts: 5,455
Likes: 2,109
Liked 2,227 Times in 1,218 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by parabarbarian View Post
The current Alliant data doesn't list the 148 gr WC for anything but standard pressure 38 spl.
do you have a chrono?
if not .. its time to think about it.
your looking for about 950 - 1000 FPS and leaving it there.
this leaves you a little room before it hits 1050 where the aerodynamics .. or rather, the lack thereof, pee in your oatmeal. WC's tend to tumble above this.

I've done the same basic thing in 44 mag with a 208G WC .. its a good bullet if you respect the speed limit, or rather if the speed limit hashes with your intended use.
in my case it was a poor bullet choice for my general needs where I favored a little extra heat.
you could hear em flutter long before the goal was met. the chrono indicated 1050 was more or less the magic number with all powders.
I suppose it wouldn't be all bad to run a few pounds through that mold again as its a fine caliber in a fine revolver, but I no longer count on it to fill its gun for all reasons and seasons role.
__________________
it just needs more voltage
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Like Post:
  #11  
Old 11-17-2012, 06:14 AM
US Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Lakeland Florida
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Default

all of my wadcutters are loaded to bunny fart specifications.
That's all you need.
Mike
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #12  
Old 11-17-2012, 10:27 AM
4barrel's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: OVER the hill in TEJAS
Posts: 539
Likes: 2,124
Liked 516 Times in 252 Posts
Default

If you are going to hot rod a dewc you will need a hardness of at least 18 which you will have to cast yourself. 2400 powder in a 357 case would be a better choise. Bullseye spikes to fast and you dont wont a double charge. Also the dewc needs to be sised to .357. DEWCS are fun to cast & shoot.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #13  
Old 11-17-2012, 01:08 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 702
Likes: 90
Liked 180 Times in 132 Posts
Default

Get yourself a Lyman "Pistol & Revolver Reloading Handbook". They list 357 mag loads for 358495 wadcutter loads up to about 1300 FPS.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 11-17-2012, 03:12 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Southern California
Posts: 299
Likes: 8
Liked 21 Times in 19 Posts
Default

As I said earlier, this is mostly experimentation. I am not unaware of the limitation of a flat faced cylinder moving in air. I imagine the WC would be very sensitive to the turbulence from a supersonic to subsonic transition making muzzle velocities above 1120 fps a bad idea. I don't recall nor can I find the critical mach number for a flat faced cylinder but keeping them at 1000 fps or below is probably a good way to stay out of that region. Given the low BC of the bullet, there would be a very rapid loss of velocity from a supersonic MV which would aggravate the effects of precession.

Any of the above -- alone or in combination -- could account for the tumbling venomballistics observed. Than you for that information.

Re 2400 powder: I tried a load of 11.0 gr in a 357 case under a Berry's DEWC seated to 1.36" OAL. It was a surprisingly good load in 3" and 4" revolvers. I do have a chronograph and, next time I can set it up, I think I'll check that load for velocity.

There is a bit of method to my madness here. My wife has arthritic wrist and is recoil sensitive. I am considering having her try the 38 spl Buffalo Bore wadcutters for her 686 (3" bbl). If that works for her then I'll need a practice round. Since I don't have access to Sundles's loading data, I figure a 357 case would be my best bet for a ballistically equivalent round. I chronoed the BB wadcutter at about 920 fps from my 3" 686.

I know there are better bullets for the 38/357 -- the Speer Gold Dot 135gr +P comes to mind -- but I work with what I have. I can buy another gun and different kinds of ammunition much more easily than I can replace a wife.

Besides, I am an inveterate tinkerer.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 11-17-2012, 11:53 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 702
Likes: 90
Liked 180 Times in 132 Posts
Default

I seem to recommend this article a lot lately.

Ed Harris: Revisiting The Full Charge Wadcutter | Reloading, Ammunition, Hunting | GrantCunningham.com
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 11-18-2012, 02:50 AM
Snapping Twig's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: S.F. Bay Area
Posts: 2,097
Likes: 146
Liked 878 Times in 343 Posts
Default

I've played with them. Home cast BBWC in my case.

I figured that they had more surface area against the lands and grooves, so I worked up to the equivalent magnum load for their actual weight and cut it off somewhere in the 20% area before maximum owing to the extra bearing surface.

They worked just fine, but IIRC they got squirrelly at distance. SWC made for better long range rounds.

I also liked to load a HBWC backwards with a 38Spl +P equivalent in a 357 case. Those were singularly impressive if you 'accidentally' hit the target stand - it just wasn't there anymore.

I used 2400, H110 and W231.

These days I don't mess with WC's anymore since SWC is more suitable for me and uses almost the same amount of lead.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 11-18-2012, 10:37 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 702
Likes: 90
Liked 180 Times in 132 Posts
Default

For some reason that baffles even me, I went on a binge a few years back and bought several different wadcutter moulds. I even have two and a four cavity 358432 160 gr Lyman moulds, I almost never shoot wadcutters, but have cast thousands of the doggone things in the last couple of months for remedial double-action work with a couple of favorite revolvers. I also have plenty of SWC moulds from 140 gr to 200 gr. Like I said... baffling.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 11-19-2012, 02:14 AM
Bullseye Smith's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Mountain State
Posts: 3,432
Likes: 26
Liked 175 Times in 77 Posts
Default

I use Berry's most of the time now, and the use of 357 brass is a waste of brass and power. I have about 4K 38 Federal brass that I load all the time, I use HBWC and 125gr flat points from Berry's and have no problems. The use of Federal or Star-Line is the only brass I use in a hand gun.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
Reloading Thread, 148 gr Wadcutter in the 357. in Ammunition-Gunsmithing; So far I have been loading Xtreme 148 gr DEWC into 357 cases by working up from 38 +P data. ...
LinkBacks (?)
LinkBack to this Thread: http://smith-wessonforum.com/reloading/277791-148-gr-wadcutter-357-a.html
Posted By For Type Date
Thread 148 Gr. DEWC powder change | THR | Page 2 | BoardReader This thread Refback 08-18-2013 05:13 PM

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
WTS: S&W 52-2 38 spl wadcutter Finest Firearms GUNS - For Sale or Trade 1 06-29-2012 09:45 AM
S&W 52-2 .38 WADCUTTER OR . 38 SUPER??? mitchsnap Smith & Wesson Semi-Auto Pistols 10 06-23-2012 02:13 AM
+P Wadcutter JayBird686 Ammo 33 06-19-2012 08:13 PM
38 Wadcutter, How Many? retiredtech S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present 17 08-17-2010 11:20 AM
45 acp 185 MC Wadcutter SW CQB 45 Reloading 8 05-29-2009 12:05 PM

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
smith-wessonforum.com tested by Norton Internet Security smith-wessonforum.com tested by McAfee Internet Security

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:45 PM.


S-W Forum, LLC 2000-2015
Smith-WessonForum.com is not affiliated with Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC)