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Old 04-16-2018, 07:23 PM
sjs sjs is offline
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My favorite load for my 686-6 is 158 gr Hornady XTP, over 13.5 grains of 2400, in Starline brass with CCI 500 standard small pistol primers. I estimate this gives me about 1175 fps out of my 6 inch barrel.

I am getting low on primers and went to my LGS and they were out of standard primers but had some CCI 550 magnum small pistol primers, so I got some.

I expect that substituting magnum primers will change the velocity and perhaps the accuracy, and I can adjust for that but I am concerned about the safety of it. None of my loading manuals show magnum primers for the .357 loads.

My load is well below maximum, which my manuals show as 14.8 grains. I would think that my load of 13.5 should still be safe with magnum primers but I don't know for sure.

Any comments will be appreciated.
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Old 04-16-2018, 07:50 PM
WR Moore WR Moore is offline
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Based on limited testing with faster powders and the 550, I'd expect limited change. That said, you might want to back down about a grain and work back up.
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Old 04-16-2018, 08:18 PM
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I use H110 in my .357 Magnum loads and it requires a magnum primer. I almost bought some 2400 on Saturday, but decided to stay with what I had been using. Had I known 2400 was good without magnum primers, I would have gotten some.

I once could only find magnum primers and loaded a batch of .38 Spl with them for use in a Model 10. Worked just fun with the standard load of Bullseye powder I had been using
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Old 04-16-2018, 08:39 PM
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SJS, I am loading 13.5 under the 158 XTP as well. I use this load in 4 different revolvers. I have used CCI 500, Win SP, and Remington 5 1/2 (magnum) primers after working back up to 13.5 grains. While all three provide similar results, the Remington 5 1/2 primers work the best accuracy wise for me.

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Old 04-16-2018, 09:14 PM
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You will probably see no ballistic difference. BTW, small rifle primers work very well in .38 Special and .357 Magnum. In fact, that's all I use.
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Old 04-16-2018, 09:54 PM
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^^^^^^^^^^^What DWalt said

Can't say all I use is Small Rifle, but I have loaded a few hundred in .38/.357 and chronographed them against SP and SPM. I have chronographed several hundred making comparisons and can see no statistically significant difference! Small Rifle do usually give somewhat better extreme spreads and standard deviation compared to any SP or SPM primer I have compared them with in my experience.
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Old 04-16-2018, 10:17 PM
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I have chronographed many loads with regular and magnum primers.
The statistical difference is usually quite small.
In a few cases, I have found magnum primers in light target loads to consistently give greater consistency and, possibly, improved accuracy.
Stocked up on Federal magnums during a recent panic.
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Old 04-17-2018, 12:57 AM
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I've loaded thousands of .357's using Hornady's 158gr & 180gr XTP's using up to 12gr H110 and 9.5gr Blue Dot using both Winchester WSP and Winchester WSPM (magnum) primers and in all honesty, never noticed any difference i haven't chrono'd them, all I know is they went bang! And burned clean. From now on, I buy whatever's on sale, or cheaper
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Old 04-17-2018, 01:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjs View Post
None of my loading manuals show magnum primers for the .357 loads.
Apparently you don't have a Speer Reloading Manual?

Over 20 years ago they stopped testing/listing 2400 with Magnum primers & added a recommendation to "Do not use Magnum primers with 2400 or Viht N110 loads shown here or high pressures will result."

.
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Old 04-17-2018, 08:57 AM
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My Hornady 10th edition lists wspm primers for use in .357 magnum loads, 2400 included. Nosler also recommends wspm with .357 magnum loads.

Guess all "experts" don't agree.
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Old 04-17-2018, 10:12 AM
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I no longer shoot any magnum handgun cartridges, but used to use one load for all .357 Magnum revolvers: cast 160 grain #51 H&G SWC (the original .357 Magnum bullet) and 12 grains #2400. As I recall, the chronographed muzzle velocity was around 1,100 fps from a 6" Python.

I had been using standard CCI-500 primers for quite a while. With the same powder charge and bullet I tried all the various standard and magnum primers I could locate and fired many groups, benchrested at 25 yards.

I don't have the figures in front of me, but with the exception of Winchester, I got slightly better accuracy with Federal, Remington, and CCI magnum primers than I did with the CCI 500s I had used for so long. These results surprised me. While differences were small but measurable, they weren't enough for me to to start buying more than one small pistol primer. I stayed with the CCI 500 as a matter of convenience.

A more accurate gun and a shooter with better benchrest skills than I have might turn up something more definitive than my results.
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Old 04-17-2018, 10:33 AM
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I started using SR primers in .38 Special back in the late 1960s. At that time I had a co-worker who was a top-level Bullseye competitor who used a .38 Colt OMT revolver in the CF stage. He mentioned to me that he used SR primers in his .38 Special WC competition loads as he found after considerable testing that they were more consistent, at least for him. I thought it was heresy at the time, as everyone knows that SR primers are for rifles only, not handguns, but he was right.
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Old 04-17-2018, 02:40 PM
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Lyman 49, fairly new manual, Uses CCI 550 in all 357 loads. and lists 14.9 of 2400 as a max load with a 158 JHP
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Old 04-17-2018, 03:24 PM
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Great info guys, thanks very much.
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Old 04-17-2018, 03:39 PM
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My old logbook from the 1970s says I used to throw 15 grains of 2400 behind a 158 grain jacketed bullet to get a really hot load. That was before privately owned chronographs and I based that on muzzle flash, perceived recoil and ease of extraction. Notes further state that 13.5 of the same behind the same does the same job, whatever I meant by that. The 15 grain load I noted was for Colt E and I frames and S&W N frames only. Maybe 13.5 for K frames? I forget.

I quit reloading when my time became more valuable than the cost of factory ammo.

But I don't know how many times I've almost dusted off the equipment and bought components.

Regards JD
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Old 04-19-2018, 01:06 AM
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Quote:
Guess all "experts" don't agree.
Speer & Alliant are part of the same company, ATK. If you can't believe the company that makes the powder, who better?

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Old 04-19-2018, 11:13 PM
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A little side note about " Speer and Alliant " . Alliant says not to use Blue Dot in the 41 magnum yet Speer in their latest manual has load data for the 41 mag using blue dot powder . Guess one doesn't talk to the other ., Regards , Paul
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Old 04-19-2018, 11:58 PM
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Any time you change components it is time to start all over in working up your loads. A change from standard to magnum primers usually calls for an initial reduction of about 10% in your powder charge, then you may carefully and judiciously work upward while monitoring for pressure signs.

About 30 years ago I helped a nephew get started in reloading. One of the issues he experienced was a perception that "magnum" primers were intended for "magnum" cartridges and loads, so he jumped right in with magnum primers for .357 mag loads. No major problems or damage, but still some lessons learned.

Magnum primers can be helpful in achieving proper ignition with heavy loads of slower-burning powders. That doesn't mean magnum primers are required for all such loads. Each combination must be worked up carefully, and any change in components (primers, cases, powders, bullets) must be treated as a "new critter" to be tamed.

Have fun, but do it carefully.
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Old 04-20-2018, 08:09 AM
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My everyday load for the 357 since the 70’s has been 150-160 SWC over 13.5 @ 2400 lit off with a magnum primer. Have shot approx 300,000 of these in a variety of K,L & N frame 357’ over the years. Going shooting here in about an hour, got a couple hundred of them to run through an old M-65. This load will serve you well.

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Old 04-20-2018, 03:46 PM
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A few years ago,I remember reading about an experiment using regular vs magnum primers.If I remember correctly,there was a slight increase in pressure but nothing to write home about.
The conclusion was something like if your load is near or at maximum,start a little lower and work up to it.
Now all you've got to do is determine if your load is near max in your gun.Like suggested above,maybe reduce your load a bit and check what's going on.
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Old 04-20-2018, 04:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TAROMAN View Post
I have chronographed many loads with regular and magnum primers.
The statistical difference is usually quite small.
In a few cases, I have found magnum primers in light target loads to consistently give greater consistency and, possibly, improved accuracy.
Stocked up on Federal magnums during a recent panic.
FEDERAL PRIMERS WOULD BE MY BRAND OF CHOICE. THEY ARE SOFTER THAN THE REST, AND IGNITE RELIABLY.........
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Old 04-20-2018, 06:39 PM
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Let's don't start on the "Soft" vs. "Hard" primer discussion again - unless you have "Hard" lab data or documentation from the primer manufacturers to support it. If you do, it will be the first time anyone does.

Last edited by DWalt; 04-20-2018 at 06:45 PM.
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Old 04-20-2018, 07:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DWalt View Post
Let's don't start on the "Soft" vs. "Hard" primer discussion again - unless you have "Hard" lab data or documentation from the primer manufacturers to support it. If you do, it will be the first time anyone does.
Very good advice. Perhaps even those that see arguing as a competitive sport will comply.
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Old 04-20-2018, 09:40 PM
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Don't understand why this particular forum, of all the different gun forums I visit seems to have such a chip on it's shoulder in the "Handloading" area. I've also seen that I'm not the only one who has noticed this.

With that in mind -- don't read my post.
If you -DO- elect to read my post, do so at your own peril.
If you have read this far, also plan some patience if/when you demand citations and proof of anything I elect to say. As in, it won't be forthcoming but you may feel free to demand and wait for it.

A contact at CCI has divulged on at least one occasion that the CCI-400 small rifle and the CCI-550 small pistol magnum are the same primer in two different packages. I myself have used the CCI-400 with fantastic success in .38 HBWC loads powered by Bullseye across six different Model 52 pistols, it's all that I load in them. You can use them anywhere a small pistol primer is used as long as you have the ability to reliably detonate them. My 52's do, my five different tuned PPC revolvers however do not.

Some folks have found that 2400 happens to be a powder where standard primers have offered better accuracy than magnum primers -- possibly a bummer for the folks who use Winchester small pistol primers that are marked "for regular or magnum loads"

These experiences are my own, I hope that sharing them helps.
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Old 04-21-2018, 12:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by one eye joe View Post
FEDERAL PRIMERS WOULD BE MY BRAND OF CHOICE. THEY ARE SOFTER THAN THE REST, AND IGNITE RELIABLY.........
Agreed. They work reliably in my 625 and Python when others don't.
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Old 04-21-2018, 12:56 PM
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Winchester small pistol primers are NOT marked " for regular or magnum loads " . It's their large pistol primer that is marked as such . Winchester sells both small pistol primers and small pistol magnum primers . Regards, Paul
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Old 04-21-2018, 01:07 PM
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IMO; it's just prudent reloading technique to reduce the load whenever any component is changed. No big deal really. In my reloading career, I've prolly tried every kind, size of boxer primer in any primer pocket it'll fit in, (and nope, haven't squish any large rifle primers into large pistol pockets that I can remember, except maybe my 44 Magnum trials.). Some had good results and some didn't, but I normally dropped the powder charge back down to starting levels....
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