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Thread: A more efficient .38! Step inside for some edjumacation!

  1. #91
    I ordered some .38 Short Colt brass as well. I need to get some good bullets for it now, unless plated 158 gr Rainier HP will work.

  2. #92
    With everyone jumping on the .38 short colt bandwagon I'm sure over on benos there's like a dozen 8 minor shooters wondering WTF is happening to all the brass.

  3. #93
    Brass length extreme.

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    Insert witty meme here.

  4. #94
    Quote Originally Posted by Flamingo View Post
    Brass length extreme.

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    Insert witty meme here.
    It's not the length... it's the girth... er, ah, meplat. Or something.

  5. #95
    Think these will work after the expiration date?

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    I am going to load these using a light to middle 9mm load using Ramshot True Blue powder.

  6. #96
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    Clays recipes?

    I now have 500 Starline 38 SC cases and Lee 38 SC dies. Has anyone developed loads for 125 or 158 grain coated bullets using Clays powder? Thanks very much.

  7. #97
    Quote Originally Posted by Wyoming Shooter View Post
    I now have 500 Starline 38 SC cases and Lee 38 SC dies. Has anyone developed loads for 125 or 158 grain coated bullets using Clays powder? Thanks very much.
    Beware of .38 SC load data you find around the net: much of it is intended to make power factor in ICORE and USPSA, and Clays is a favorite of competitors.

    While 125 PF sounds wimpy, the Clays loads I see people using in the Short Colt to make it (they exceed it to provide a margin) would be close to a 20% over-charge in a .38 Special case. That is a huge increase for a powder as fast as Clays. And they’re using a smaller case.

    My .38 Special IDPA/practice load is a max charge of Clays behind a 158 cast RN. I suffered some brain flatulence one day and set my measure not quite 10% over max (still well short of 125PF loads in SC case) Judging by the report, I was in +P territory.

    I don’t get what the buzz over shooting .38 Short Colt in a .357 is all about, but whatever floats your boat.

  8. #98
    Old man yelling at cloud OlongJohnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lost River View Post
    I am using a 125 grain Missouri Bullet Company Cowboy #2 Truncated Cone Flat Point.
    I notice Midway is having a sale on Berry's 125-gr flat point .357 plated bullets. Same price per bullet, but would save on freight to get everything at Midway. Wondering whether the Berry's may not work as well due to lack of a cannelure and not being able to get the roll crimp.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lost River View Post
    Now for Dillon guys, this is a good little tidbit here. It seems obvious when you think about it after the fact, but not knowing has caused a few guys some headaches in experimentation. Use a 9mm powder funnel in the powder station rather than a .38 special or anything else. I use a 9mm Lee crimp die on the 4th station to give the ammo a slight roll crimp.
    This one? https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1011209519

    Quote Originally Posted by Lost River View Post
    I am using a mix of 9mm and 38 special dies.

    BTW, when it comes to long range (as in hundreds of yards) handgunning the LEE roll crimp die is absolutely critical. I learned that lesson shooting past 5-600 yards. I had huge fliers, rounds that would go yards off away from where the others were going. Then when the guy I was shooting with diagnosed my stuff looking for the reason why, he looked at my ammo and immediately recognized the issue.

    Short version is that with the roll crimp, and a good heavy crimp, the round has time to build up pressure and gets a more consistent even release. The results down range were dramatic as soon as I switched. I even switched on .45 ACP and groups at 100 yards were better. Inside 75 yards you won't see a difference, but at extended ranges such as 150-200 yards and beyond, it really becomes very obvious. 500 yards is night and day.
    I'm not likely to shoot these past 75 yards, especially out of my J frame. Is it worth buying the Lee Factory Crimp die instead of just using my Redding taper crimp 9mm die? Or would you recommend the Lee die for my regular 9mm loading, too?


    Found this post on benos: https://forums.brianenos.com/topic/1...omment=1309939

    My set-up for .38Short-Colt, (in Dillon XL650), is:
    - Resizer: RCBS 38/357
    - Powder funnel: 9 mm.(Dillon)
    - Seater: RCBS 9mm. or 38/357 it's the same
    - Taper Crimp: RCBS 9mm. (sometimes Dillon .38super)
    - Factory Crimp die Lee: 9 mm.
    work fine for me !
    So it looks like I should be able to use:
    Sizer: Lee .38SPL
    Powder funnel: 9 mm.(Dillon), or scoop (if that proves reliable at a charge weight I like), or Redding 10X if not using the Dillon
    Seater: Redding 9mm or (possibly) Lee 38/357
    Taper crimp: Redding 9mm
    or
    Roll crimp: Factory Crimp Die Lee 9 mm

    I have AA #2, HP-38 and Titegroup (not TiteWad). Hodgdon's data for .38 Short Colt looks ridiculously light. For 9mm, they do list 2.9-3.4 grains Titewad with a 124gr Berry's TP bullet. The HP-38 and Titegroup loads are considerably faster. Western lists several 9mm starting loads for AA#2 at 3.3-3.4 grains with 124gr bullets in the 8xx fps range, so that seems likely to be safe. I'll still try to scare up some Titewad for this project. Will see what the local shop has tomorrow.

    Thanks for any guidance!

    ----------------------

    ETA: Looked at Hodgdon's data for .38SPL vs. 9mm with Titegroup. Attraction of Titegroup is I have more of it than any other pistol powder, because I found it cheap back when powder was cheap. Its tendency to run a little hot is OK with a revolver, where the cylinder has a lot of mass and reloads are slow. With these super light loads, I'm not worried about flame cutting.

    9mm
    124 GR. BERB HBRN TP
    Hodgdon Titegroup 0.356" 1.150" 3.6 957 27,700 PSI 4.1 1,057 32,700 PSI

    .38 SPL
    125 GR. CAST LRNFP
    Hodgdon Titegroup 0.358" 1.445" 3.2 856 8,400 CUP 3.8 985 12,000 CUP

    125 GR. HDY XTP
    Hodgdon Titegroup 0.357" 1.455" 4.3 953 12,800 CUP 4.6 1,010 15,600 CUP

    It's hard to imagine looking at that data that something like 3.2gr Titegroup on the .38SC case wouldn't be perfectly safe in revolvers chambered for .357, even though it breaks the rule of going below the starting charge for 9mm. Maybe it's another excuse to buy a strain gage setup and put it on my .38 SPL Contender barrel...
    Last edited by OlongJohnson; 09-24-2021 at 11:20 PM.
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  9. #99
    Old man yelling at cloud OlongJohnson's Avatar
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    Got my order from Missouri Bullets. https://missouribullet.com/details.php?prodId=256

    Not impressed so far. Just opened one box. Lots of the bases are angled, rather than perpendicular to the bullet axis, which shifts the c.g. toward the long side. When the c.g. isn't centered, the spin causes the bullet to take a trajectory in the direction the orbiting c.g. is moving at the instant the bullet clears the barrel. This result is random, so you can expect random accuracy. Even worse, quite a few have essentially casting flash, overfill of the mold, or something where there is too much material on the base and it hangs out past the OD of the bullet - but of course not radially symmetric. Expect they'll hang up loading if not dressed or sized, and with that much random extra material, will be unlikely to provide consistent accuracy.

    I'm waffling on whether to collect some data, like weights on a 30-piece sample, before I call up Missouri and ask them to take them all back. I really don't want to hand-sort a bunch of 8.4-cent bullets to try to decide which ones might be useable.

    I'm thinking about just buying some Berry's 125gr for 9 cents each, but they have no cannelure for crimping. Not sure it matters in this load shot from a J frame, though.

    Or I could suck it up and buy XTPs for 20 cents, knowing they'll likely act like FMJs, but the accuracy should be excellent and they have a cannelure for crimping. That kinda gets away from the cheap-fun plinking and practice aspect.

    Anyone have thoughts?
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  10. #100
    Old man yelling at cloud OlongJohnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OlongJohnson View Post
    I'm waffling on whether to collect some data, like weights on a 30-piece sample, before I call up Missouri and ask them to take them all back. I really don't want to hand-sort a bunch of 8.4-cent bullets to try to decide which ones might be useable.
    Statistics of a 30-piece sample below. The only non-random part is the first three are bullets that stood out visually as particularly ugly the first time I opened the box. (Just what I saw when I opened it, not sorting the box to find bad ones.) The rest were pulled at random and put on the scale. That's 5.6 grains of variation in the first 30 out of the box and predicts a 7.6 grain range in the population.

    Think I'm going to be asking for a refund, rather than carry forward and chase my tail on trying to get a consistent load with these.

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    Last edited by OlongJohnson; 10-02-2021 at 05:07 PM.
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