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Old February 13, 2016, 05:09 PM   #1
Micro man
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38 snubby load

It's winter in Michigan so most of my shooting is indoors now. I need a load with no exposed lead (range rule). I found some Amrscore 158 gr FMJRN on line at a decent price and was thinking about reloading them for my Ruger SP 101.
The Ruger is .357 with a 2 1/4 barrel. My choice of powder is Bullseye or Unique.
I was wondering if members had any pet 38 special loads they could share.
This is strictly for punching holes in paper inside of 25 yards.
Thanks for your help
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Old February 13, 2016, 07:03 PM   #2
Nick_C_S
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The nice thing about 38 Special is that they are inherently accurate.

Safety first: I'm not sure if your bullet is plated or jacketed; but assuming it's plated: Plated bullets travel through the barrel with more friction than straight lead. In fact, they drag down the barrel with close to the same amount of friction as a jacketed bullet. Then there's the barrel-cylinder gap bleeding off the gasses needed to push the bullet through the barrel. These two factors together is why I recommend referencing jacketed data; and strongly disagree with the notion of using lead data. If your bullet is jacketed, then you obviously want to use jacketed data. Either way, the concern here is getting a bullet stuck in the barrel. In fact, Speer doesn't even have jacketed load data for a 158 bullet (for 38 Special). This is for the reason I just explained: barrel friction and a resulting stuck bullet.

Since you're just punching holes in paper, I'd recommend Bullseye. Unique runs slower and doesn't play nice until you pump it up a bit; and that's not what you're doing (IMO, Unique isn't as versatile as its reputation suggests). Both Hornady and Sierra have jacketed 158 data. Both start at 3.4 grains with Bullseye. To me, that sounds a little low and I'd probably start at 3.6 or 3.8; but that's just me. Hornady peaks at 4.5; and Sierra at 4.9.

As far as "pet loads," I don't have any with 158/Bullseye. I do shoot a 158 plated SWC for ICORE competition; but I don't use Bullseye. I reserve my Bullseye for lead slugs (long story). The good news goes back to my first sentence: 38 Special is inherently accurate. Your ammo with the Amrscore bullet is going to shoot straight. It's just going to be a matter of finding a loading that you like to shoot.
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Last edited by Nick_C_S; February 13, 2016 at 07:08 PM.
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Old February 14, 2016, 11:00 AM   #3
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Ditto above. Traveling now but BE/125 in 2" running slow for me, 150 fps slower than 5". I find jacketed and platted at same powder have same vel. YMMV. I would not run 158s at .38, find .357 loads.

Note running at 10 deg. Cold likely a factor.
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Old February 15, 2016, 09:46 PM   #4
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Nick/Jeff....thanks for the reply, I do believe a 115 gr bullet is available. Maybe I would be better served buying that.
Thanks again
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Old February 15, 2016, 10:07 PM   #5
savagetroll
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Couldnt agree with Nick more. Been shooting Berrys 158 FP rounds from my 38 S&W snubby using 3.8 grains Bullseye with great accuracy. 1.450 OAL
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Old February 15, 2016, 11:06 PM   #6
Nick_C_S
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Quote:
I do believe a 115 gr bullet is available.
I'm not sure about a 115 grain bullet for 38 Special (115 is a common weight for 9mm, but not 38 Special).

125's are a common weight and most bullet makers carry them. Also, I'm a heavy bullet guy, but 125's are a bit more versatile for 38 Special. You'll get varying opinions, but if you are just punching holes in paper for trigger time out at the range, 125's are a good way to go.

But you can use 158's too.
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Old February 16, 2016, 05:15 PM   #7
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Quote:
The nice thing about 38 Special is that they are inherently accurate.
Which cartridges are inherently inaccurate? I would like to know so that I can avoid them.
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Old February 16, 2016, 05:51 PM   #8
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32 Long and 38 and 44 Specials all enjoy good accuracy reputations. It may be a case of getting the cart before the horse, though. All three have had good quality target shooting guns made for their chamberings, which can't possibly hurt the perception. All three have velocities low enough and twist rates slow enough that they don't over-spin cast bullets, making them less susceptible to in-flight wobble due to mass asymmetry caused by inclusions, and that helps the home caster look good. Their low pressures help when it comes to shooting the soft swaged bullets commonly made in large volume.
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