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Old 10-04-2020, 04:14 PM
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1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil  
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Default 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil

Read here, from various manuals, and from the writings of Elmer. Skeeter, and Taffin before setting out to work up a load that would drive a 150-165 grain bullet about 1,000 fps out of my little Ruger LCR (1 7/8" barrel) and my S&W 640 Pro (2 1/8" barrel). I had hopes I could find a load whose recoil would permit reasonably quick sight acquisition in case follow-up shots were needed. Recoil might also be an issue in case I had to fire single-handedly, using either hand.

I'm a couple weeks in and think I have found THE load for my snubbies. It consists of a little over a grain more than what my old manuals list as the starting load of 2400 behind a 358156 out of a Lyman mold in a .357 case. I've tested (untimed fire) out to 15 yards and have found accuracy very acceptable.

I chronographed yesterday and found that the LCR was averaging 995.6 fps ten feet from the muzzle with an extreme spread for 5 shots of 21.9 fps. The 640 wasn't far behind in either category.

I fired a few one-handed shots with the 640 in my strong hand today. Accuracy seems doable. Speed will take some practice. Work with my weak hand and timed fire will hopefully take place one day this week.

The 358156 doesn't lend itself to quick re-loads out of my speed loaders. I may be on the lookout for a bullet with a similar point of impact but a less-pronounced shoulder for that purpose.
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Old 10-04-2020, 04:24 PM
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I have a 4 inch Model 66 and the Ruger .357 LCR and tried the 158 gr. FBI load using the Rim Rock SWC-HP with 6.3 gr of Power Pistol in the 38 Special case.
My results were 1060 FPS out of the 66 and 940's out of the Ruger LCR.
Recoil wasn't to bad with the LCR and accuracy was good but it leaded the barrel of the LCR for some reason. The Model 66 shot them very clean.
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Old 10-04-2020, 05:11 PM
Qc Pistolero Qc Pistolero is offline
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358156 is an excellent bullet;my favorite in the .357.
I guess I might have read a little too much Skeeter's writings!But I'm sure I'm not the only one!
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Old 10-04-2020, 05:36 PM
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OK, I enjoyed the joke. Now tell us another one.
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Old 10-04-2020, 10:09 PM
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1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil  
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???.....If you're referring to something I typed, I didn't mean any of it to be funny and re-read it to make sure I called it like I've seen it since I started this little project.
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Old 10-04-2020, 11:12 PM
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If you are shooting any bullet at 1,000 fps out of a 2" barrel, you need to know if it is a J frame or heavier.

A 150gr bullet at 1,000 fps is really for a K frame or heavier, since the recoil is quite heavy and over pressure for any J frame.

Most powders like Unique or slower will push a 158gr lead bullet at 1014fps or faster with 38 special cases in a 6" barrel if you want, this speed.
In a 357 a Magnum case, you can get up to 1,000 fps with just medium fast powders.
In my 6" 686, Green Dot can reach 1281 fps.

Even though you can "Develop" high fps loads in a snub nose revolver..................
it is really nice to have a QUALITY Hogue, one piece grip (or other) that covers up the metal back strap and cuts down on the recoil and "Sting" of the high recoil loads energy.
The slim, factory , wood grips are killers.............

Manageable recoil at 1,000 fps out of a 21 oz. revolver with a
150gr bullet..........
Isn't happening.

Have fun.

Last edited by Nevada Ed; 10-04-2020 at 11:16 PM.
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:34 AM
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Default I think this is possible with .357 loading.....

... but there must be a downside unless the OPs recoil tolerance is exceptional and he must be using some shock absorbing grips. I can ignore pain regain the target and shoot quickly with really tough loads, but not on a regular basis. I also think the older I get the less I do this.
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Old 10-05-2020, 12:05 PM
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There are no "free lunches" in ballistics.
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Old 10-05-2020, 12:12 PM
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I certainly didn't mean to imply that I intended to use the load I described for recreational purposes in these little guns, and certainly not in the LCR. I load lots of milder loads for target/plinking use. I also own steel revolvers with longer barrels that will be used to fire many of these rounds, and a 386 that seems to whack my hand at least as authoritatively as the 640.

My mention of firing one-handed is based on an old mentor reminding me regularly that if one of the bad guy's first shots should strike the self- or home-defender in either of his hands or arms, he could increase the height of the rapids in the creek he's up if he hasn't practiced firing at least a bit while gripping the revolver with only his strong or weak hand. I might mention that my weak-hand accuracy improves dramatically when making use of the Crimson Trace laser sight on the LCR.....I'm 73 and reasonably healthy, but make no claim to having young-man strength or exceptional resistance to recoil.....Just thought I'd work up a modest 2400 carry load and pray I never have to use it. Sorry if anyone took offense.

Thanks, Nevada Ed, for the civil advice concerning grips. Knowing I hail from the east-Kentucky coal fields, one of my flat-land pals who introduces me as "Smith, from up in that heathen country" might have stooped so low as to ask if I was wrapping my stocks with a whole "ball" of electrical tape.
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:23 PM
Rule3 Rule3 is offline
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1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil 1,000 fps from 2" barrels w/ manageable recoil  
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Even the insane Buffalo Bore loads can barley get 1.000 fps for a 2" barrel
The 38 special +P 158 gr do about as well.


For hand loads a whole lot of blast. flash and recoil for not anything gained.


Tactical Short Barrel Lower Recoil Low Flash 357 Magnum Pistol & Handgun Ammunition

Last edited by Rule3; 10-05-2020 at 03:24 PM.
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Old 10-05-2020, 07:25 PM
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In case anyone has interest, some other revolvers with longer barrels used the same loads to record the following velocities on my chronograph this afternoon:

3" Model 65-5.....1023 fps
5" Model 27-2.....1109 fps
7 1/2" Colt SAA...1203 fps
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Old 10-05-2020, 07:39 PM
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Default Well, those sure are....

...some rollicking roads out of those guns. There is an article in my Speer #9 called "Why ballisticians get grey". and they test the same loads through bunches of guns and the variability even between guns of the same make and model have drastic spreads. The spreads between makes is even more drastic.

I came across an early Sierra load for .38 with a 125 grai bullet that was a full grain higher than anything recommended now. I didn't have a Chrono at the time, but I started up by .2 grains and it wasn't long before I said, 'That's enough'. I didn't feel it was unsafe in my model 10. Just really raucous compared to 'normal' loads. Maybe I can reproduce it in my .357 and see what I got.
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Old 10-05-2020, 07:44 PM
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Default Raucous loads

...some rollicking roads out of those guns. There is an article in my Speer #9 called "Why ballisticians get grey". and they test the same loads through bunches of guns and the variability even between guns of the same make and model have drastic spreads. The spreads between makes is even more drastic.

I came across an early Sierra load for .38 with a 125 grai bullet that was a full grain of Unique higher than anything recommended now. I didn't have a Chrono at the time, but I started up by .2 grains and it wasn't long before I said, 'That's enough'. I didn't feel it was unsafe in my model 10. Just really raucous compared to 'normal' loads. Maybe I can reproduce it in my .357 and see what I got.
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Old 10-05-2020, 07:49 PM
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I used to carry the Buffalo Bore #20A 158gr +P's in my 642-1. BB claims that load just exceeds 1000fps from a 2" barrel. When I first bought some, I fired five rounds in about 5 seconds to see how it felt. It was unpleasant, for sure, but not uncontrollable. I have Altamont wood boot grips on my 642. Had I put the Hogue tamer grips on there, it would have been a lot better. I love the way the Hogues mitigate recoil, hate the extra bulk they add to a J frame. No free lunch. I have since switched to carrying the Speer Gold Dot +P's in my 642. The lighter bullets shoot to point of aim in my 642, where the 158gr's shoot high.
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Old 10-05-2020, 08:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwsmith View Post
. There is an article in my Speer #9 called "Why Ballisticians Get Grey". and they test the same loads through bunches of guns and the variability even between guns of the same make and model have drastic spreads. The spreads between makes is even more drastic.
That article should be required reading for everyone. I have cited it here many times, usually to back up my statement that any revolver MV information you get from ammunition manufacturers or find in a reloading manual should never be believed. The only way to know the MV is to get a chronograph and measure it yourself.
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Old 10-06-2020, 05:36 AM
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When I was a young handloader more than once I was told "that cartridge ain't capable of those velocities."

That's like saying "Ruger Never Built One Of Those."
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Old 10-06-2020, 10:07 AM
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More than a few times, I've watched bullets, especially .45s, lob from shadow through bright sunlight on their way toward a side match target set 50 or so yards downrange at a cowboy action match. When this happens, even among those who push the minimums, once in a while a smile can be seen tugging at the corners of the mouth. I've always been proud of the velocities generated by the ammo I load for my wife's Marlin 1894. I drop a middle-of-the-road charge of Bulls Eye in .38 Special brass and seat the 158 grain RNFP out to 1.51" OAL so it'll run smoothly. Seems like the the bullet averages exiting the muzzle of the little lever gun's 18" barrel in the neighborhood of 850 fps.

I was glad others were social distancing yesterday when I ran a few of her rifle loads I found in the truck through my 2" Model 10-5. The Chrony claimed they were certainly strolling along at a grin-inducing pace if observers had been present.
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Old 10-06-2020, 12:27 PM
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Default Can you tell us...

...what powder you are using?
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Old 10-06-2020, 04:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwsmith View Post
...what powder you are using?
If you aimed that at me, I'm loading 2400 in the warm 357s, Bulls Eye in the 38s I mentioned that my wife runs in her Marlin. Loads I haven't mentioned include Trail Boss and WST in my "fun" .45 ACP 200 grain bullet loads and Tite Group in my business 45s. Unique and 2400 are loaded in most of my 44 Specs and HP-38 powers cartridges of several calibers including Venturino's old load in 45 Colt..
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Old 10-06-2020, 06:59 PM
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Now the light comes on.......

I was wondering how you got Bullseye to get over 752 fps or a slower powder like Unique to get over 861 fps out of a 38 cased J frame revolver?

Now I see that it is a .357 revolver that is being used.
OK..
I feel better now, with those higher fps that are being listed.
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