Smith & Wesson Forum

Go Back   Smith & Wesson Forum > Ammunition-Gunsmithing > Reloading

Notices

Reloading All Reloading Topics Go Here


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-27-2011, 08:37 PM
phenson's Avatar
phenson phenson is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: LA (Lower Alabama)
Posts: 627
Likes: 132
Liked 564 Times in 104 Posts
Default 38/44 load

Please educate me. I've done a search on the forum and really can't find what I'm looking for, it may be because it doesn't exist.
I'm looking for a load using 2400 and an RCBS 35-200-FN, .358" diameter, 200 gr. cast bullet to duplicate the old 38/44 round. I know there is no modern data and there may not be any old data, but if anyone knows for sure I would appreciate the info.
Thanks
__________________
Pat Henson
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 09-27-2011, 09:40 PM
lebomm lebomm is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Seattle
Posts: 1,947
Likes: 38
Liked 821 Times in 490 Posts
Default

To the best of my knowledge, the old .38-44 load used a 158 gr. bullet. However, I'd be willing to bet a small amount that you'll be pleased with your bullet over 10.5-11.0 gr 2400. I have a mould for the Lyman 358315, a 200 gr. RNw/GC for the .35 Remington, and loaded these over 12.0 gr 2400, getting flattened primers. I've since settled on the 170 gr. Keith type 358429/12.0 2400 for my Transitional HD. Please keep us posted.

Larry
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 09-27-2011, 09:58 PM
Paul5388's Avatar
Paul5388 Paul5388 is offline
US Veteran
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Rusk Co. Texas
Posts: 1,318
Likes: 0
Liked 43 Times in 31 Posts
Default

If this is the bullet you're talking about

BULLET MOULD .35-200-FN
I think you'll find it a bit long for the application. It would work in a Handi rifle with a long chamber, or a .35 Rem, but it'll probably hang out of the end of the cylinder on a revolver.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09-27-2011, 10:35 PM
tops's Avatar
tops tops is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: NC, Yadkin County
Posts: 6,217
Likes: 25,659
Liked 8,546 Times in 3,196 Posts
Default

I use 12 grs. 2400, 158 gr. SWC, 6 in. barrel, 1194 fps. Larry

Last edited by tops; 09-27-2011 at 10:39 PM. Reason: typed wrong power charge
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 09-27-2011, 10:40 PM
Paul5388's Avatar
Paul5388 Paul5388 is offline
US Veteran
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Rusk Co. Texas
Posts: 1,318
Likes: 0
Liked 43 Times in 31 Posts
Default

11.0 gr of 2400 with a CCI 550 is a max load with a 158 gr LSWC according to Speer #8.

Last edited by Paul5388; 09-28-2011 at 12:32 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 09-27-2011, 10:52 PM
Alk8944's Avatar
Alk8944 Alk8944 is online now
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Sandy Utah
Posts: 8,721
Likes: 1,578
Liked 8,835 Times in 3,523 Posts
Default

phenson,

lebomm already said it, but I will repeat, the .38-44 was not loaded with a 200 grain bullet. It used either a 158 Lead Round-nose bullet, a 150 grain "Metal-cased" round-nose bullet, or a 150 grain metal cased "Metal-piercing" bullet that had a conical pointed bullet. The metal cased bullets had only a metal cap on the nose, with the shank or bearing surface of the bullet being bare lead.

The .38-44 muzzle velocity was advertised from 1115 to 1150 FPS. You can get in this velocity range with 6.4 gr/Unique, 7.1 gr/ 4756, 11.5 gr/2400. Without both a chronograph and original .38-44 ammunition to compare with you cannot truly duplicate the original load, but you can get in the range, depending on your barrel length. Please note that the .38-44 pressure levels ran in roughly the 25,000 to 32,000 PSI (crusher) or now referred to as CUP. These were intended specifically for the S&W .38-44 Heavy Duty and the "Outdoorsman", both N-Frame guns. These velocities are a result of personally chronographed date, not extrapolation of, or guess work based on published load data.

The 200 grain round nose bullet was loaded only in the .38 S&W Super Police, and the .38 Special Super Police. Sometimes the .38-44 has been, inaccurately, referred to as the "Super Police", but this is incorrect. Possibly this is what has you confused.

There was an article in "Handloader" sometime in the past year or so specifically about replicating the .38-44. I will let you know which issue when I find the article.
__________________
Gunsmithing since 1961
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 09-28-2011, 07:32 AM
phenson's Avatar
phenson phenson is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: LA (Lower Alabama)
Posts: 627
Likes: 132
Liked 564 Times in 104 Posts
Default

I guess what I'm looking for then, is a load using 2400 to create the 200 gr. Super Police load for .38 Spl. My question is what bullets do you all use, and can it be made with 2400?
Thanks
__________________
Pat Henson
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 09-28-2011, 09:50 AM
Paul5388's Avatar
Paul5388 Paul5388 is offline
US Veteran
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Rusk Co. Texas
Posts: 1,318
Likes: 0
Liked 43 Times in 31 Posts
Default

The closest I've seen is from the Lyman 45th Edition. Start at 8.0 gr 2400 with 195 gr 358430 @734 fps. Max at 9.5 gr 2400 with 195 gr 358430 @ 893 fps. They shot them out of a 6" M14.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 09-28-2011, 10:04 AM
Alk8944's Avatar
Alk8944 Alk8944 is online now
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Sandy Utah
Posts: 8,721
Likes: 1,578
Liked 8,835 Times in 3,523 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by phenson View Post
I guess what I'm looking for then, is a load using 2400 to create the 200 gr. Super Police load for .38 Spl. My question is what bullets do you all use, and can it be made with 2400?
Thanks
Still the wrong bullet! The closest mould for the correct bullet is Lyman 358430 which, I believe, is still available in the 195 gr. version. At one time there was also a 150 gr version, one band shorter. Cast very soft it will weigh about 198-199 gr.

To replicate the factory .38 Spl. "Super Police" velocity use 3.7-3.9 gr. Unique. 2400 will work, but not the most efficient.

Don't make the mistake of believing there is anything "Super" about the Super Police load. I have two boxes which I have chronographed at different times. The first, 1960s, was shot in a 1915+/- 5" M&P and gave an average velocity of 635 fps on one date and 621 fps on another. 5 round sample both times. The more recent lot which I just obtained is from sometime in the 1980s I believe. In a 6" 10-4 it gave an average velocity of 684 fps, again for a 5 round sample.

Sample size. While at least 20 rounds are needed for a reasonably close average velocity, 5 is sufficient for a good indication/approximation which is really all that is needed. Second, with something so difficult to come by you don't want to just shoot it up for curiosity!

Added:

Factory claimed velocity for the Super Police, from my early box of ammunition was 730 fps, and from the 1944 Gun Digest 745 fps. My experience in chronographing thousands of rounds of factory ammunition is that it is virtually universal that, when shot in real guns, that velocities run 50-100 fps slower, sometimes more, than their book figures indicate. So, what I have recorded for these two lots of ammunition is right in the ball park for what can be expected.

Here is some data from an older Alliant manual dated (C)1996. All are their listed maximum loads, and are for both standard and +P as noted. With this heavy bullet pressures get to +P level real fast! All were shot in a 5.6" test barrel, Federal 100 primers, case not specified.

200 gr LRN Standard: Bullseye, 3.0/760; Unique, 3.6/780; 2400, 7.0/870

200 gr LRN +P: Bullseye, 3.3/795; Unique, 3.7/800; 2400, 7.1/890

I generally rely on Alliant data and have found that generally I get ca. 100 fps lower velocity from a 6" revolver than what is indicated in the manual, just like my experience with factory loads. Note: These were carefully checked and with Unique and 2400 the difference from standard pressure to +P was just .1 gr. of powder for a mere 20 fps.

If you are interested, here is a link to the Lyman bullet mentioned: http://www.lymanproducts.com/lyman/b...php?entryID=14
__________________
Gunsmithing since 1961

Last edited by Alk8944; 09-28-2011 at 10:23 PM. Reason: Adding data
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #10  
Old 09-28-2011, 12:29 PM
tops's Avatar
tops tops is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: NC, Yadkin County
Posts: 6,217
Likes: 25,659
Liked 8,546 Times in 3,196 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul5388 View Post
11.0 gr of 2400 with a CCI 550 is a max load with a 158 gr LSWC according to Speer #8. 15.0 gr of 2400 is a .357 Mag load and will clock over 1400 fps out of a 6" barrel.
I am assuming you are mentioning the 15 gr. load because of my original post. A few minutes after I posted I realized what I had done and edited it to 12 grs. but I guess I wasn't fast enough. 15 grs. is my .357 load and it does 1429 fps. out of a 6 in. barrel. I use a Lyman book from the 60s and it list a max. charge of 12.5 grs. of 2400 for a .38 spec. at 1240 fps. 12 grs. is enough for me. Larry
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 09-28-2011, 12:44 PM
Paul5388's Avatar
Paul5388 Paul5388 is offline
US Veteran
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Rusk Co. Texas
Posts: 1,318
Likes: 0
Liked 43 Times in 31 Posts
Default

I went back and edited that comment out. I just didn't want to run a chance of misinformation causing problems, but your edit took care of the situation.

I get 1420 fps with a 6" M28-2 with that 15.0 gr load in .357. That's pretty close agreement!
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 09-28-2011, 01:44 PM
Stophel's Avatar
Stophel Stophel is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Back in Kentucky!!!
Posts: 465
Likes: 347
Liked 122 Times in 49 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alk8944 View Post

Don't make the mistake of beleiving there is anything "Super" about the Super Police load. I have two boxes which I have chronographed at different times. The first, 1960s, was shot in a 1915+/- 5" M&P and gave an average velocity of 635 fps on one date and 621 fps on another. 5 round sample both times. The more recent lot which I just obtained is from sometime in the 1980s I believe. In a 6" 10-4 it gave an average velocity of 684 fps, again for a 5 round sample.
Holy cow! It might not be as accurate, but I believe you could throw the bullets faster than that!
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 09-28-2011, 01:53 PM
Jim Watson Jim Watson is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Florence, Alabama, USA
Posts: 2,342
Likes: 40
Liked 1,393 Times in 771 Posts
Default

As one witty gunzine writer of the day said, those made the appropriate challenge to a criminal fleeing in an automobile: "Halt, or I'll scratch up your paint!"
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 09-28-2011, 10:41 PM
VAdoublegunner's Avatar
VAdoublegunner VAdoublegunner is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Virginia
Posts: 1,061
Likes: 10
Liked 78 Times in 51 Posts
Default

Brian Pearce had an article in Handloader #243 (Oct 2006) on modern loads for the 38-44 S&W. I recommend it both for the historical background on the guns and loads as well as updated load data.

The heaviest bullet he lists is the 180gr Cast Performance WFNGC loaded over Lil'Gun for 1261 fps.

He also lists the Lyman 173 gr over 2400 for about the same velocity.
__________________
" I said, good DAY! "
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 09-28-2011, 11:10 PM
lazy lazy is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: SW Washingtom
Posts: 155
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by VAdoublegunner View Post
Brian Pearce had an article in Handloader #243 (Oct 2006) on modern loads for the 38-44 S&W. I recommend it both for the historical background on the guns and loads as well as updated load data.

The heaviest bullet he lists is the 180gr Cast Performance WFNGC loaded over Lil'Gun for 1261 fps.

He also lists the Lyman 173 gr over 2400 for about the same velocity.
So what is the 38/44 load? It sounds like a .38 case load that breaks 1000+ fps
Is it safe to use in a .38 gun? Or is this a .357 gun load only?
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 09-29-2011, 05:22 AM
Skip Sackett Skip Sackett is offline
Banned
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Hoosier Land!
Posts: 4,379
Likes: 587
Liked 576 Times in 307 Posts
Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by lazy View Post
So what is the 38/44 load? It sounds like a .38 case load that breaks 1000+ fps
Is it safe to use in a .38 gun? Or is this a .357 gun load only?
Not EVERY 38spl firearm, that is the reason there are 357Mag firearms now. Some folks thought that it was for EVERY one. Ended up wearing a few extra metal parts before they were done.

It was originally designed for use in "N" frame Smith's. As NKJ_nut, a member here on the forum attests, the "N" frame Smith in 38 caliber is the strongest of all of the "N" frame revolvers because of metal left in the firearm. It could take the abuse, no problem. "K" frame, older 38Spl's, not so much.
The Outdoors Man and the 38/44 revolvers can take it just fine.

I would even go on to say that any "L" frame, M581, M586, M681, M686 could take it just fine.

In my opinion, even a "J" frame, if it is all steel and in good condition, would be a better choice to run them in rather than a "K" frame.

As with any load and firearm, work up your loads and stop when signs of overpressure appear. Each firearm is an individual. I had a M586 that had sticky extraction with THE LOAD while others ate it like candy.

FWIW
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 09-29-2011, 09:37 AM
Paul5388's Avatar
Paul5388 Paul5388 is offline
US Veteran
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Rusk Co. Texas
Posts: 1,318
Likes: 0
Liked 43 Times in 31 Posts
Default

I think it was in 1930 that the .38-44 came out in response to demand for something a little more powerful for use against gangsters. It was a 158 gr bullet in the neighborhood of 1150 fps and 464 ft lbs of energy in the N frame.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 09-30-2011, 09:44 AM
VAdoublegunner's Avatar
VAdoublegunner VAdoublegunner is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Virginia
Posts: 1,061
Likes: 10
Liked 78 Times in 51 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by lazy View Post
So what is the 38/44 load? It sounds like a .38 case load that breaks 1000+ fps
Is it safe to use in a .38 gun? Or is this a .357 gun load only?
NOOOOOO!!!! as those who followed up before I saw this wisely responded.

This is strictly for classic revolvers chambered in 38-44 (mostly N-frame S&Ws and a few Colt's) or 357 magnum (there are a number of modern revolvers that were chambered in 38 Special and 357 Mag while in production simultaneously for various legal/sales reasons, e.g. the Ruger Security-Six, that may be safe to use but you would have to decide for you and your gun)

I recommend checking into a back issue of Handloader if you are interested in 38-44 loads.

His test data was developed using a S&W 38-44 Outdoorsman with a 6.5" barrel.
__________________
" I said, good DAY! "

Last edited by VAdoublegunner; 09-30-2011 at 09:48 AM. Reason: deleted load data
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 09-30-2011, 08:10 PM
ChuckS1's Avatar
ChuckS1 ChuckS1 is offline
US Veteran
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Stafford, VA
Posts: 1,560
Likes: 84
Liked 1,449 Times in 526 Posts
Default

Where's my Speer #8 and those pesky SR4756 loads...
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 09-30-2011, 09:10 PM
Skip Sackett Skip Sackett is offline
Banned
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Hoosier Land!
Posts: 4,379
Likes: 587
Liked 576 Times in 307 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckS1 View Post
Where's my Speer #8 and those pesky SR4756 loads...
Exactly!
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 10-06-2011, 08:45 PM
Peter M. Eick Peter M. Eick is offline
SWCA Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: San Antonio, TX, USA
Posts: 1,451
Likes: 8
Liked 740 Times in 256 Posts
Default

You are not kidding. I chrono-ed some of those loads today and I was impressed!

See my 38/44 ammo thread I am about to start.
__________________
SWCA 1646
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 10-06-2011, 09:33 PM
bmcgilvray's Avatar
bmcgilvray bmcgilvray is offline
SWCA Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 3,352
Likes: 10,447
Liked 6,095 Times in 1,249 Posts
Default

Some .38 Special Chronograph Tests

Here's some 200 grain handload data tucked in this thread.
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 10-07-2011, 10:19 AM
Peter M. Eick Peter M. Eick is offline
SWCA Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: San Antonio, TX, USA
Posts: 1,451
Likes: 8
Liked 740 Times in 256 Posts
Default

Here is 200 grn data from yesterday.

We now need to switch to some commercial ammo. First off we are going to try some early 1960’s 200 grn Remington 38 special ammo.

6.5” 799+ 736- 63e 758m 17s
5.0” 756+ 712- 44e 738m 14s
4.0” 740+ 659- 81e 718m 23s

About what I was getting on my better loads in terms of es and sd so it seems reasonable. Interesting that we had exactly 20 fps change per inch of barrel with this stuff.
__________________
SWCA 1646
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 09-30-2013, 09:44 PM
press-1-for-english's Avatar
press-1-for-english press-1-for-english is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 364
Likes: 265
Liked 543 Times in 160 Posts
Default

I realize this is an old posting but I am hoping someone out there answer my question. I have a 1937 Colt Official Police with a 6" barrel. Colt advertised these to be able to handle the 38-44 S&W round. With that being said, would it be safe to fire +P .38 Special ammo out of my Colt? It is mechanically sound. Thank you in advance for any information either positive or negative.
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 09-30-2013, 11:21 PM
Paul5388's Avatar
Paul5388 Paul5388 is offline
US Veteran
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Rusk Co. Texas
Posts: 1,318
Likes: 0
Liked 43 Times in 31 Posts
Default

Since the +P is less pressure than a .38-44, I would think it should be OK to shoot +P out of it.
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 10-01-2013, 06:33 AM
press-1-for-english's Avatar
press-1-for-english press-1-for-english is offline
Member
38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load 38/44 load  
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 364
Likes: 265
Liked 543 Times in 160 Posts
Default

Thank you. That's what I was thinking, too.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
357 magnum, 38spl, 659, bullseye, chronograph, colt, commercial, m14, m28, m686, model 14, model 28, model 686, n-frame, outdoorsman, rcbs, remington, ruger, smith-wessonforum.com, universal

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
357 Magnum load to mimic carry load Pdxrealtor Ammo 37 04-10-2018 08:07 PM
Lyman load data VS. Lee load data ferggie Reloading 28 04-24-2017 10:53 PM
Is Speer the best shot load? Best Caliber? Does porting disqualify shot load? dwever S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present 16 10-17-2010 12:16 AM
.40S&W 180-gr load request ~ training load for my PD issued G22 nitesite Reloading 7 03-03-2010 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 11:43 AM.


Smith-WessonForum.com is not affiliated with Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC)