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Old March 21, 2012, 11:48 AM   #1
hounddawg
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180 grain lead 38 special and W231

could not find any load data for this combo. Checked Lymans, Winchester powder site, the net, and even an old copy of Pet Loads. At the Win site they list 158 grain LSWC loads are between 3.1 and 3.8 so I loaded these at 3.4 - 3.5. They will be shot out of a S&W 686 with a 4 inch barrel. I figure that is a safe load, any opinions?
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Old March 21, 2012, 12:40 PM   #2
Jimro
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You went up 14% in bullet mass and started in the middle of charge range instead of at the bottom? Not smart in my humble opinion, do a load workup from 2.9 grains up to where you guestimated to ensure it is safe (that is roughly a 30% drop in charge from the previous starting charge). The thing about firearms is that "linear approximations" don't work well when it comes to describing pressure curves, so alway err on the side of caution.

2.9, 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4 is six shots for your S&W 686, and it is cheap insurance.

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Old March 21, 2012, 02:14 PM   #3
hounddawg
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yeah I started having second thoughts about that load which is why I made this thread. A six round workup is a good idea, thanks
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Old March 21, 2012, 02:20 PM   #4
AlaskaMike
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Jim's advice is good. Even through you'll be shooting these in a 686 which can handle much higher pressures, it's always good to start very conservatively when you're in unknown territory.
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Old March 21, 2012, 04:58 PM   #5
SHR970
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Older Published data: Winchester 12th Ed. 1992. Use at your own risk!

Lead 200 gr. bullet W231 powder max load 3.8 gr. Pressure 15,500 CUP. velocity 775 fps. from SAAMI 6" barrel. This was listed under standard pressure loads.

Current published data.

Lymans 49th 170 gr. linotype W231 3.4 gr.-4.6 gr. found on pg. 355.

You should be in safe territory. YMMV, no warranties implied or expressed, etc.
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Old March 21, 2012, 05:14 PM   #6
hounddawg
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I don't think there will be any issues but am still going to take 15 minutes to load a few workup rounds. Better safe than sorry and thanks to all
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Old April 12, 2012, 05:48 PM   #7
hounddawg
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Finally made it back up to the range today and thought I would bump this in case anyone here wants to try these heavier bullets. had zero pressure signs with that load but could definitely tell a difference in the recoil. They had a healthy snap to them. In the next month or so I will load up a ladder test and set up the chrony to shoot some off a bag for groups. Today I did 50 rounds plinking style with a one handed grip at 25 yards and they all stayed on the target ( 8 1/2 x 11).
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