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W296 in a .38 special?
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 Posted: Tue Jul 16th, 2013 04:23 PM
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VanDaRifleman
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Sierra's recent manual has load data for a standard pressure .38 Spl that takes *-* cases, CCI 550 primers, and two Sierra 158 gr. jacketed bullets (JHP & JSP) seated 1.45" long over between 10.6 and 12.1 gr. of W296. Apparently the load can shoot from 850-1000 fps from a 6" S&W K38. Has anybody here previously tried this load? Like/dislike? Any thoughts?



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 Posted: Tue Jul 16th, 2013 05:34 PM
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RobertMT
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I don't know how you'd fit two bullets and 12gr of W296 in a 38sp case.

Seriously, unless you're trying for 357 in 38sp case, I'd stay away from W296. It needs to be pushed hard and 38sp is only rated for half the pressure it likes.



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 Posted: Tue Jul 16th, 2013 06:41 PM
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Paul B
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I'm just a bit surprised that the Sierr manual had data with the W296 for the .38 Spl. I also noticed when I checked in my copy that they have those warm (hot?) loads for A2400 and IMR4227. I do not shoot kacketed bullets in my handguns, but I have shot some very stiff loads of H2400 in a Smith & Wesson 38/44 Outdoorsman Revolver. basically it's a .38 Spl. on a 44 ("N") frame. One hell of a stout revolver. :cool::thumbs: I don't doubt that a "K" frame S&W wouldn't have too much of a problem with those loads but I would use them on a very sparingly type basis.
I recall the late gun writer Skeeter Skelton prefered those hot loaded .38's in his .357 magnum handguns and those loade probably would be OK in rifles chambered for the .38 Spl. or .357 mag. I just won't shoot them in my "K" frame guns.
I still have a 38/44 Outdoorsman revolver and I usually do not shoot hot loads in it as well. But, I do have a couple of boxes loaded up with the base of the cartridges painted red with milady's nail polish. I use my home cast bullets rather that any jacketed type.
Paul B.



 Posted: Tue Jul 16th, 2013 06:58 PM
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VanDaRifleman
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Sierra does not call those particular loads +P/+P+/hot/otherwise overpressure. I imagine they are probably hovering right around the max standard SAAMI pressure, though.
Peculiar thing is I've seen heavier and nearly as fast standard pressure loads from Lyman manuals from even shorter test barrels, and I haven't heard any reports of frame battering/flame cutting/other damage from even the 170 gr. #358429@912fps (4" universal receiver), even in J-frames and their equivalents.



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 Posted: Tue Jul 16th, 2013 10:57 PM
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Interesting that Sierra is doing that. I confess to being boring, boring, boring: When I think I might need a heavier .38 load I go to a .357. I'm very fond of my Ks and I tend to baby them.



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 12:35 AM
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wheezengeezer
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Many years ago,Hodgdon's ballistic lab tec,Tom Brown told me that H110 needs 23,000psi to be consistent.Had some velocity variations in my 32 mag.I think that anything less should be fueled by 2400 or 4227.Is a stated pressure inthe loads?



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 02:13 AM
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williamwaco
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VanDaRifleman wrote: Sierra's recent manual has load data for a standard pressure .38 Spl that takes *-* cases, CCI 550 primers, and two Sierra 158 gr. jacketed bullets (JHP & JSP) seated 1.45" long over between 10.6 and 12.1 gr. of W296. Apparently the load can shoot from 850-1000 fps from a 6" S&W K38. Has anybody here previously tried this load? Like/dislike? Any thoughts?

Somebody is seriously confused here.

I expect it is me.

I don't have the manual mentioned.

I tried this with some Hornady 158 gr XTP bullets because I don't have any Sierras.

The Hornadys are 0.666 in length. If I seat two of them in a .38 special case to an overall length of 1.55 ( as short as I can get it. ( 1.45 is not possible with my components.)

The result here is that there is room for 0.0 grains of powder (ZERO) The base of the bullet is touching the web of the case.

Since the case is tapered on the inside, the bullet expands the case as it is forced into the case. The resulting diameter of the case just forward of the web is 0.420. That is at least 0.040 too large to chamber in a Smith and Wesson.

Anyone know the length of those Sierra bullets?

What do I not understand about this recipe?


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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 02:26 AM
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Plainsman
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The recipe is, I think, to use either of the selected bullets. Not both.



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 02:27 AM
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ultramag
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I'm not sure if you guys are just being funny or trying to rib the OP about the way the post was worded, however what the Sierra data is indicating is that either one of those bullets can be used in those loads. Not both at the same time.

My apologies if I'm being too literal or a killjoy William. :sofa:



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 02:31 AM
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DarkShooter
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I saw this load and was wondering about it too. I wonder how consistent it would be?

Might be a good heavy load for L and N frames and Ruger revolvers.

Would be interesting to shoot over a chrono and see how it does.



 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 02:49 AM
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williamwaco
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Well!

I told you it was probably me that was confused.

It usually is!



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 03:12 AM
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VanDaRifleman
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Yes, WW. I amend my last with the following: and either the Sierra 158 grain JHP or JSP bullet (seated 1.45" long).
WG, the manual doesn't state load pressure. I reckon the load does not venture into +P territory, but we work loads up anyway for such telltale signs.



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The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: Pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth do I hate.-Proverbs 8:13


 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 04:14 AM
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Paul B
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The thing that throws me about tose loads is the Sierra manaul appears to me to be one of the most conservative of the loading manuals. :confused: I'll have to do some research on this. I know the late Skeeter Skelton used that type of load, but only in an "N" frame .357 mag.
Paul B.



 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 05:03 AM
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VanDaRifleman
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Partially correct, Paul B. Skeeter Skelton used "heavy-duty outdoorsman" class .38 special loads, but his preferred load was:
"...my favorite handloads, made from a recipe of the 358156 hollowpoint bullet held in its lower crimping groove by a Remington .38 Special case. The powder charge was 13.5 grains of 2400 fused with CCI Small Pistol primers."
I forget the OAL of these loads. I believe (but can't confirm-don't quote me) the Lyman HP 358156 mold cast a bullet lighter than 140 gr. with a GC shank.



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The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: Pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth do I hate.-Proverbs 8:13


 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 05:15 AM
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Paul B
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I knew he used #358156 but I couldn't remember if it was a hollow point bullet or a solid. Many years back when I had my first Outdoorsman, I loaded 12.5 gr. of H2400 in .38 Spl. brass with the solid nose version. Good bullet BTW. I used it to kill a roughly 250 pound Black Bear not too far from Yosemite National Park back in 1959. I used that same bullet over 15.5 gr. of H2400 back in 1966 to kill a fairly large hog in Big Sur California with an S&W M28 .357 magnum. It's one of my favorite handgun bullets.
I have mentioned before that I feel the current A2400 is a bit faster burning than original H2400, regardless of what Alliant says that they are the same. I know my guns don't think they're exactly the same. :lol:
Paul B.



 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 09:54 PM
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Plainsman wrote: When I think I might need a heavier .38 load I go to a .357.
Ditto.  Why shoot a heavy .38 when I have a .357?



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 Posted: Thu Jul 18th, 2013 04:01 AM
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VanDaRifleman
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I reiterate, the Sierra manual doesn't call this load outside of standard SAAMI pressure range. I don't see why this would be considered heavy if it's not specified to be overpressure by Sierra. Why do you two consider the idea of loading to 17,000 PSI a "heavy .38?" A heavy duty/outdoorsman .38 S&W special would be 20,000-24,000 PSI (.38/44, .38 SPL+P+).
Let's recall that modern firearms are proofed by firing cartridges that are loaded around 30% higher pressures than their maximum SAAMI/CIP pressure rating. If .38 SPL+P firearms are proofed with ammunition loaded in the neighborhood of 21,250 PSI, I would not hesitate to fire handloaded rounds that touch 17,000 PSI in a well-made, reputable revolver so chambered on a regular basis.

Last edited on Thu Jul 18th, 2013 04:24 AM by VanDaRifleman



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The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: Pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth do I hate.-Proverbs 8:13


 Posted: Thu Jul 18th, 2013 04:47 AM
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H110/W296 powder is designed to operate at higher pressure, go to Hodgdon and read cautions about reducing this powder.


For those loads listed where a starting load is not shown, start 10% below the suggested maximum load and then approach maximums carefully, watching for any sign of pressure (difficult extraction, cratered and flattened or blown primers, and unusual recoil). H110 and Winchester 296 loads should not be reduced more than 3%.

Reduce H110 and Winchester 296 loads 3% and work up from there. H110 and Winchester 296 if reduced too much will cause inconsistent ignition. In some cases it will lodge a bullet in the barrel, causing a hazardous situation (Barrel Obstruction). This may cause severe personal injury or death to users or bystanders. DO NOT REDUCE H110 LOADS BY MORE THAN 3%.



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 Posted: Thu Jul 18th, 2013 04:57 AM
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VanDaRifleman
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Robert, I read the disclaimer and warning. I'll proceed with caution, and according to their recommendations.



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The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: Pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth do I hate.-Proverbs 8:13


 Posted: Mon Jul 22nd, 2013 07:49 PM
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I'm with Paul B; I believe 2400 is a wee bit faster than batches produced some years ago. That's why I have reduced Elmer's 44 Special load from 18.5 to 15.5 (others have reduced it to only 17.5).

Back on the subject, I rarely use jacketed bullets in my .38/.357; nonetheless, I've got several boxes of them and I'll try loading some....I also have too much W296 moldering away in my cupboard.

My "heavy" 38 Special is a Taurus Mdl 82, which is identical, except for chamber, to their Mdl 66 .357. I've fired lots of heavy ++P++ loads in it, and it's still very tight.

And I'll admit I use the Taurus so as to keep my S&Ws in pristine shape....chicken, I guess....:eek2:

I'm tempted to also use Sierra's W296/H110 load on a batch of 160 gr. SWC-GC....except I wonder....would the increased pressure created by using jacketed bullets aid in the burning of W296/H110 vs. cast bullets? What think ya'll?



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