Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

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    Tennessee Jed
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    Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Mon Aug 18, 2014 6:10 pm

    In these dark days of the Obama-induced smokeless powder drought, I am trying to find handload recipes making use out of powder I have on hand, due to not being able to find old favorites online or in stores.

    Thus began my quest for a powder that I own which will propel a 125 grain, 357 caliber bullet at least 1400 feet per second. I still have some slower powders on hand, but have a big stash of Power Pistol and was hoping to break the above barrier with it.

    With a max. load (same as listed on the Alliant website), non-magnum small pistol primers, Zero brand 125 grain JHP bullets, and a GP100 with 4 inch barrel, my chrono tells me I'm getting around 1425 fps. Yee-freaking-haw.

    The sound wave and fireball are impressive. They definitely let you know that a ballistically-significant-event has just occurred. Accuracy was outstanding. Wasn't hard at all to keep all the shots in a two inch circle at 13 yards.

    This will hopefully keep me stocked in master blaster magnum practice ammo until I can get my hands on some more AA9 or 2400.
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    Devereaux
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Devereaux on Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:27 pm

    I am SO limited in my views of powder! I still have a ton of old Winchester 740 (I think it is - I use(d) it to load my .38 Supers to major).
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:57 am

    I was, too. This shortage has made me reconsider other powders.
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    Cornmastah
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Cornmastah on Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:24 am

    ... and the new powders that have come out like the CFE pistol and such. Normally I stick to what I know I like and what works, but forced experimentation can be fun too. I have started using some alliant powders that I previously would not have considered.
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:37 am

    How do you like CFE? I've been thinking about trying it.
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    Cornmastah
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Cornmastah on Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:18 pm

    I have not personally used CFE due to my large stash of Unique powder, but a few of my buddies have used it and say they like it. They say it burns cleaner than Unique and from what they can tell, they haven't noticed any copper fouling. Unique is a pretty dirty powder though, so not sure if that comparison helps. They have mostly used it when loading up 9mm and .40 and say that it shoots accurately as well.

    As far as my reloading is concerned, I have mostly been experimenting with rifle powders such as h4350, rl15, rl17, imr 4064, and a few others due to Varget and my other rifle powders being sold out everywhere. The difficult part is that once you finally find another load you like, you can't find that same powder again in the stores so you have to start the load development process all over again. The positive part of all this is that when powders come back in stock, I will have several options to choose from with load data ready.
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Thu Aug 21, 2014 12:21 pm

    Yeah, the load development process has become a chore. However, I did discover AA5 in the process, which I like quite a bit better for 44 cast bullets than Unique. Think I'll try CFE soon as well.
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    Devereaux
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Devereaux on Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:26 am

    ?You guys pushing the speed envelope. ?If so, having temp issues.
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    Tennessee Jed
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Tennessee Jed on Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:33 am

    I'm pushing the envelope a tad in the 357 mag/125 jhp load. I'm using a max load of Power Pistol.

    I haven't noticed a temp problem in the GP100, but then again, EVERYTHING in Tennessee in August is hot.

    With the 44 Mag rounds using AA5, I'm above 44 Special max and below 44 magnum min (with the help of the tech assistance guys at Accurate Arms Powder), and I'm not noticing any temp issues.

    However, I do notice temps raising fast in my Ruger Blackhawk in the summertime, shooting just normal loads with 255 swc's. Maybe because it's blued, or maybe I just notice it more because I have to handle more of the gun frame while unloading the empty cases. Or maybe it's just the fact that I shoot outdoors and current heat factors around here are in triple digits.
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    Cornmastah
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Cornmastah on Fri Aug 22, 2014 12:01 pm

    I usually don't push the speed in my handguns, but do so in some of my rifles.
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    Devereaux
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    Re: Peace, through superior 357 magnum firepower

    Post by Devereaux on Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:00 pm

    Bah! Pushing speed is nothing to worry about. I DO believe it makes for more wear and tear, but then, you can always get the thing rebuilt.

    I believe the biggest enemy of guns is heat. To that end, even if you push the envelope, as long as you don't heat the guns too much, they will last. Some guns need better builds to tolerate the increased loads, but those are particulars of the weapon. So, eg. the IPSC Super guns all needed certain things to make them live. But the smiths learned that and you got a gun that was robust.

    In the rifles I believe the most important part is bolt lock-up. One reason to be careful of AR's is that the lock-up is a bit harder to evaluate. You can shoot all day with normal rounds, but pushing the envelope with them may be more of an issue. In that vein, I had a friend I hunted prairie dogs with, and he had a couple AR's for walk-around. Neither shot all that well, and each was being pushed on velocity as they were shooting .20 Tactical, and Phil tended to load hot. At the time I didn't know why, but now I believe it's the inherent barrel/bolt lock that is the issue. NOTHING like a bolt gun in how well it locks.

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