I had a head scratcher today at the range too using Hodgdon, and Lee's recomended loads for .38 spcl using 148 grain HBWC and Trail Boss. I am a huge advocate of Trail Boss.
Well I ran from start to max load. Two at the starting load I could watch leave the barrel only do drop literaly 10 feet away. The next one squibbed.
The max loaded ones made it a measured 12 feet from the barrell
. All of the max loaded ones were to 99% case fill with those bullets. I hand weighed each charge too.
Luckily I loaded some with a stand by load of Bull's Eye that worked, and worked well.