The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > Handloading, Reloading, and Bullet Casting

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old September 27, 2000, 02:03 PM   #1
Henry P
Member
 
Join Date: September 18, 2000
Posts: 59
Just a quick question some one may be able to help me with. .357 and .44 mag operate at essentially the same pressure levels. Why is it that we build .357's on smaller frames but not .44's. It would seem to me that the same amount of pressure in a .357 would be harder on a gun because of the smaller area it is spread over. What part of the equation am I missing here? Thanks.
Henry P is offline  
Old September 27, 2000, 02:33 PM   #2
Robert the41MagFan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 18, 1999
Posts: 1,233
Current commercial 357 Magnum loads are downgrades from the original. Forty-four has remained roughly the same. Also, 357 is a narrower case, which allows there to be greater wall thickness between the chambers and the exterior of the cylinder. That is why you see 44 Special only guns in the smaller frames and not 44 Magnum. And why full size guns come with eight in the wheel now.
Robert the41MagFan is offline  
Old September 27, 2000, 02:50 PM   #3
Paul B.
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 28, 1999
Location: Tucson, AZ
Posts: 2,598
Robert. I would have to disagree with you one one point. The .44 magnun has also been downloaded in power as well. The original .44 load put out roughly 1500 plus FPS. Factory loads now run in the 1200 to 1300 FPS range for the standard 240 gr. bullets. Seems the S&W 29's and 629's couldn't stand up to the recoil effects of the original loads. I distinctly remember Elmer Keith complaing particulary about Winchesters 240 gr. loads. He said he had to use a piece of 2x4 to pound on the ejector rod of his Model 29 to extract the cases, and vowed to use no more such loads. I have an early 629 that after around 200 to 250 factory loads gets to visit my local gunsmith for a new trigger and hammer. Damnably expensive. I'd sell it, but would feel guilty about sticking that dog on anyone. S&W won't even look at it. I understand they have beefed up the guts of the 29/629 series because of these problems.
The .357 was downloaded as well, because it was tearing up the model 19 and 66 Smiths. Made them loose in a hurry.
I still load .357 to the original specs, but only for use in "N" frame .357's.
Paul B.
Paul B. is offline  
Old September 27, 2000, 04:22 PM   #4
Henry P
Member
 
Join Date: September 18, 2000
Posts: 59
In response to 41magFan, I did think about the .357 having a smaller diameter, which would leave more metal surrounding the case, but wouldn't the smaller frame size demand a smaller diameter cyinder and thus negate that advantage. What do you think?
Henry P is offline  
Old September 27, 2000, 10:58 PM   #5
Tom Matiska
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 12, 2000
Location: Wilkes-Barre, Pa
Posts: 1,002
The pressure (pounds per square inch) times the area (square inches) give you the total force. The 44 cartridge has more square inches of surface area so the same psi results in more stress.

A 44 mag frame also needs to be more massive for the sake of the shooter. If you could make a large frame 44 out of unobtainum that weighed the same as a medium frame 357 it would be uncomfortable to shoot.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Henry P:
......It would seem to me that the same amount of pressure in a .357 would be harder on a gun because of the smaller area it is spread over. What part of the equation am I missing here? Thanks.[/quote]

Tom Matiska is offline  
Old September 27, 2000, 11:07 PM   #6
saands
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 14, 1999
Posts: 1,551
HenryP:

The answer comes from physics ... Force equals pressure times area.

The cross sectional area of the .357 is .100 square inches while the .44 is .152 square inches.

Since the pressures are the same, the forces on the frame of the .44 are a full 50% higher than the .357 for the same pressure, barrel length, etc.

Take care,
Saands
saands is offline  
Old September 28, 2000, 09:28 AM   #7
Henry P
Member
 
Join Date: September 18, 2000
Posts: 59
Thanks for the replys. I knew there had to be an explanation for it.
Henry P is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:26 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.07571 seconds with 9 queries