The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > Hogan's Alley > Handguns: The Revolver Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old June 28, 2013, 04:28 PM   #1
Bobby1243
Member
 
Join Date: June 25, 2013
Location: williston fl
Posts: 38
best sd ammo for 4in revolver in 357mag

What's the best sd ammo for a 4 in barrel revolver in 357mag
Bobby1243 is offline  
Old June 28, 2013, 04:36 PM   #2
PawPaw
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 24, 2010
Location: Central Louisiana
Posts: 3,112
The legendary old standard for the .357 magnum was the Federal Premium 125 grain load. This is a fairly hot, fast, load that's rated well in all the tests in the 1980s. There's nothing fancy about it, it simply works.

I'd advise against extensive use of this load in a SW K-frame revolver. There have been documented issues with flame-cutting in the forcing cone when using this load. Having said that, this is the load I carried in my SW66 when I was patrolling a rural area. I didn't use much of this load for practice shooting, maybe a box a year to rotate stocks and keep my ammo fresh. For practice shooting I used a standard 158 grain load. After 20 years, my Model 66 doesn't show flame-cutting, but I limited the use of this particular ammo.

Still, it's the gold standard for .357 self-defense loads. Good luck finding it in stock.
__________________
Dennis Dezendorf

http://pawpawshouse.blogspot.com
PawPaw is offline  
Old June 28, 2013, 05:03 PM   #3
Super Sneaky Steve
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 9, 2011
Posts: 737
Any load will do just fine. Buy a few and see what you shoot the best.
__________________
anti-state, anti-war, pro-market
Super Sneaky Steve is offline  
Old June 28, 2013, 05:24 PM   #4
weldonjr2001
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 14, 2001
Location: San Antonio, Tx.
Posts: 458
The Remington Express 125 grain SJHP is an old equal to that hot Federal load. It's what I carry in my 4" GP100.

It averages 1451 fps on a 90 degree F day out out of my GP100 for 587 ft/lbs ME.

Hard kicking, and a lot of flash out of the 4" GP100.

You can sometimes find the less expensive UMC 125 grain SJHP at WalMart. Same bullet, but it has a dirtier burning powder than the Remington load, and is in a brass case instead of a nickled, but is loaded as hot.

I used to buy that Federal Classic load at WalMart years ago in boxes of 50 for around $20, but that dried up years ago also.

Now, hottest might not equal best, but I like the Remington Express 125 grain SJHP. I'd use the Federal equivalent if I could find it.
weldonjr2001 is offline  
Old June 28, 2013, 05:36 PM   #5
22-rimfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 19, 2005
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 4,594
125 gr HP's for self defense is what I use. I don't see the value in buying the boutique 357 mag ammo for self defense, but everyone has their own value system.
22-rimfire is offline  
Old June 28, 2013, 05:43 PM   #6
Deaf Smith
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2000
Location: Texican!
Posts: 3,244
For field use I find the old standby, hard cast 158gr LSW with gas check, with a good charge of 2400, to be the way to go.

For interpersonal use a good 125 to 140 gr. JHP factory load will do fine. Federal, Remington, Winchester, CCI, and others make real good loads.

Find the one that shoots dead on and you can control and that is that.

Rather have 50 fps less velocity and the gun shoots like a dream than something hotter that is not so easy or accurate.

Deaf
__________________
"The government has confiscated all of our rights and is selling them back to us in the form of permits."
Deaf Smith is offline  
Old June 28, 2013, 07:55 PM   #7
Webleymkv
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 20, 2005
Location: Indiana
Posts: 9,890
One of the nice things about the .357 Magnum is that there are very few "bad" JHP loadings. Good choices include (but are not limited to):

Federal 125gr SJHP
Remington 125gr SJHP
Remington 125gr Golden Saber
Winchester 125gr SJHP
Winchester 125gr PDX1
Cor-Bon 125gr JHP
Cor-Bon 125gr DPX
Speer 125gr Gold Dot
Hornady 125gr Critical Defense
Federal 130gr Hydra-Shok
Cor-Bon 140gr JHP
Winchester 145gr Silvertip
Federal 158gr SJHP
Remington 158gr SJHP
Winchester 158gr SJHP

Really, so long as you stay in the 125-158gr range, you've likely got a pretty effective load. The only three common loadings in that weight range that I'd caution against are Federal 158gr Hydra Shok, Speer 158gr Gold Dot, and CCI Blazer 158gr JHP as all three show lackluster expansion in the tests I've seen.
__________________
Smith, and Wesson, and Me. -H. Callahan
Well waddaya know, one buwwet weft! -E. Fudd
All bad precedents begin as justifiable measures. -J. Caesar
Webleymkv is offline  
Old June 29, 2013, 11:50 AM   #8
RC20
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 10, 2008
Location: Alaska
Posts: 2,049
You need to come up with a mission profile first.

If its HD, then over-penetration is a serious issue. In that case you would want one of the 38 special HD rounds (maybe even the pink stuff).

357 was intended for highway patrol (or rural) where you could be shooting at care, windshield and various barriers. Its vast overkill for HD in its full tilt loads.

Any of the 38 special HD loads are good for in the house use.

You don't need that high velocity to get reliable expansion out of those rounds these days and you don't want to be going through walls and into neighbors house.

The advantage is it makes a good trail gun and you can then load it up with appropriate rounds for that purpose.
RC20 is offline  
Old June 29, 2013, 12:00 PM   #9
armsmaster270
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 25, 2008
Location: California
Posts: 1,944
In 38spl I use the Federal +P+ 110gr SJHP Treasury Load. It performs flawlessly and does not over penetrate.



__________________
http://www.armsmaster.net-a.googlepages.com
http://s239.photobucket.com/albums/f...aster270/Guns/
Retired LE, M.P., Sr. M.P. Investigator F.B.I. Trained Rangemaster/Firearms Instructor & Armorer, Presently Forensic Document Examiner for D.H.S.
armsmaster270 is offline  
Old June 29, 2013, 12:17 PM   #10
Webleymkv
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 20, 2005
Location: Indiana
Posts: 9,890
Quote:
If its HD, then over-penetration is a serious issue. In that case you would want one of the 38 special HD rounds (maybe even the pink stuff).

357 was intended for highway patrol (or rural) where you could be shooting at care, windshield and various barriers. Its vast overkill for HD in its full tilt loads.

Any of the 38 special HD loads are good for in the house use.

You don't need that high velocity to get reliable expansion out of those rounds these days and you don't want to be going through walls and into neighbors house.
A good hollowpoint in a .357 Magnum is not overly penetrative and, in some cases, the .38 Special penetrates more due to less aggressive expansion. For example, the 125gr SJHP .357 Magnum loadings from makers like Winchester, Remington, and Federal typically penetrate 11-13" in 10% ballistic gelatin while the 158gr LSWCHP .38 Special +P loadings from the same makers can regularly penetrate 15" or more.

As far as penetration of interior walls, just about any centerfire handgun will penetrate several layers of sheetrock quite easily. The best way to mitigate this risk is to develop a home defense plan that positions you to take your shots from angles that represent the lowest risk to bystanders.
__________________
Smith, and Wesson, and Me. -H. Callahan
Well waddaya know, one buwwet weft! -E. Fudd
All bad precedents begin as justifiable measures. -J. Caesar
Webleymkv is offline  
Old June 29, 2013, 09:53 PM   #11
skoro
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 30, 2008
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,719
Quote:
What's the best sd ammo for a 4 in barrel revolver in 357mag
Just about any 357mag load is going to be good for self defense. But what I keep mine stoked with is the "FBI load" ; 38spl +P lead semiwadcutter hollow point. It has a long history of being a very effective round w/o all the flash and blast of a full house 357 cartridge.

As always, YMMV.
skoro is offline  
Old June 29, 2013, 11:03 PM   #12
engineer88
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 13, 2008
Location: La Florida
Posts: 287
I personally prefer the Speer gold dots in 125 for my 357. They penetrate about 15" or so through 4 layers of denim and then gelatin. The nifty bit is that they also open up to 3/4 of an inch. Hard to beat that even with some 45 loads.
__________________
I do not love the bright sword for it's sharpness, nor the arrow for it's swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend.
engineer88 is offline  
Old June 30, 2013, 08:38 AM   #13
Mike Irwin
Staff
 
Join Date: April 13, 2000
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 36,021
"If its HD, then over-penetration is a serious issue."

Yep. FAR more serious than an out and out miss.
__________________
"The gift which I am sending you is called a dog, and is in fact the most precious and valuable possession of mankind" -Theodorus Gaza

Baby Jesus cries when the fat redneck doesn't have military-grade firepower.
Mike Irwin is offline  
Old June 30, 2013, 08:46 AM   #14
ClydeFrog
Junior member
 
Join Date: May 1, 2010
Posts: 5,798
.357magnum....

Post #2 said it best.

I'd add that for a regular defense round just in the home, you may also want to consider a high quality frangible like Corbons popular Glaser Safety Slug(silver) or the powerful Magsafe .357 load. Some pre fragmented or "exotic" rounds like Extreme Shock USA or RCBD(Le Mas) are not like they claim but there are merits to using a frangible in home defense for Magnum revolvers.

Keep in mind the blast, recoil, muzzle flash, etc. The .357magnum is not for the timid, .

ClydeFrog
ClydeFrog is offline  
Old June 30, 2013, 09:00 AM   #15
Water-Man
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 23, 2008
Location: N. Georgia
Posts: 1,548
I still use the 145gr. Winchester Silvertips for SD.
__________________
PROUD TO BE A VETERAN
Water-Man is offline  
Old June 30, 2013, 08:00 PM   #16
h518may
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 3, 2007
Location: louisville, ky
Posts: 188
I'm with water man. Love me some silver tips. Also golden sabers are good too.
h518may is offline  
Old July 1, 2013, 01:59 PM   #17
kflo01
Member
 
Join Date: December 2, 2010
Location: NY
Posts: 61
I was considering using Bufflao Bores 125 grain load. Seems pretty hot at arounds 1300 fps. Anyone have thoughts on that load?
__________________
NYS Unrestricted | PA CCP | FL CCP
NRA Member
"Reading,Learning and Doing"
kflo01 is offline  
Old July 1, 2013, 03:23 PM   #18
Deaf Smith
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2000
Location: Texican!
Posts: 3,244
Expect 1450 fps from a 4 inch barrel for the 125 gr slug.

That is the load that made the .357 the top one shot stopper in handguns.

It is also why the .357 Sig makes just about that.

Kind of loud and some blast but it's a very effective self defense load.

Deaf
__________________
"The government has confiscated all of our rights and is selling them back to us in the form of permits."
Deaf Smith is offline  
Old July 1, 2013, 04:52 PM   #19
Colt46
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 25, 2002
Location: Campbell Ca
Posts: 858
Have to agree

There are many, many 125 gr loads that are virtually one shot stops. There will be minor variations, but a little research will give you a lot to choose from.
Colt46 is offline  
Old July 2, 2013, 04:06 PM   #20
Deaf Smith
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2000
Location: Texican!
Posts: 3,244
One note gang..

The .357 magnum, as loaded with the top 125gr JHPs was mainly used in S&W 27/28, Colt Python, Trooper, and Lawman .357s.

ALL were about 40 oz in weight. And that made them quite controllable.

But the very light weight .357s are not so controllable, especially one handed, with real .357s.

So if you want a 4 inch .357 to use top magnum loads alot I do suggest a Ruger GP-100, S&W L/N Frame revolvers. Yes the light weight guns won't fall apart but they are very hard to shoot for extended practice sessions.

Deaf
__________________
"The government has confiscated all of our rights and is selling them back to us in the form of permits."
Deaf Smith is offline  
Old July 2, 2013, 04:28 PM   #21
militant
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 12, 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 473
Hornady Critical Defense 125gr.
__________________
A hit with a .22 is better than a miss with a .44
militant is offline  
Old July 2, 2013, 04:41 PM   #22
WIN1886
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 25, 2012
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 573
I dunno......however , I can shoot 38 special +P 125 grain ammo in my .357 revolver pretty good in DA mode at the range so I will stick with that for home defense and hope I never have to use it !
WIN1886 is offline  
Old July 2, 2013, 11:56 PM   #23
ClydeFrog
Junior member
 
Join Date: May 1, 2010
Posts: 5,798
Post 20, short barrel .357magnums....

I agree with Deaf/#20 post.
The proven, respected factory 125gr JHP .357magnum is great but be aware that if you practice with a snub revolver it won't be fun.
In the early 1990s, I owned a NIB Ruger .357magnum DA only SP101 snub.
125gr JHP rounds stung like if you stuck your fist in a hornet's nest after a couple of cylinders.

A GP100, L frame or N frame Smith & Wesson, Colt Python, etc can help with recoil but it will still have blast, flash, etc.

To be fair, in a real lethal force event, emotions, adrenenline and endorphins will be so pumped, you may not really feel .357magnum level recoil.
ClydeFrog is offline  
Old July 3, 2013, 09:57 AM   #24
MK11
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 26, 2001
Posts: 574
Remington's 125 grain Golden Saber load is fairly mild, more like a hot 9mm than the fire-breathing 125s that both it and its competitors load.

The Speer 135 grain Gold Dot is interesting, decent for longer barrels even though it's billed as a short barrel load. Fairly mild to shoot, although it was pretty much unobtanium even before the ammo shortage.

The 180 grain .357 loads get a lot of play from the penetration crowd, but it doesn't thrill me in a handgun. I wouldn't count on a 125 grain .357 in a carbine and I wouldn't like a 180 grain .357 in a handgun.

Lots of good .357 loads, the limitation is how well you shoot them (and how much you can afford to shoot to be proficient).
MK11 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 10:34 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 0.12385 seconds with 9 queries