The Firing Line Forums

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

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old March 3, 2007, 09:42 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: May 23, 2005
Posts: 953
.357mag in a 2.5" need help

I have a .357 snub i like to carry when working with my dog in the field. I am going to load some 158grn XTP's and am debating between bluedot, greendot and power pistol. I am looking for maximum power our of my loads. I am concerned about some of the dogs that run around here. There is a guy with Pit Bulls and if i need to stop on i need all the power i can get. what powder would you use out of the ones mentioned? Bludedot is my go to for my .44mag and i love it but thats a longer barrel.
Colt King Cobra .357 Colt Anaconda .44mag
Springfield Armory .45 Double stack Loaded
XD40 service XD45 Taurus 617 .357mag
Smith M&P 40
kgpcr is offline  
Old March 3, 2007, 10:27 PM   #2
Senior Member
Join Date: June 21, 2002
Posts: 2,019
Blue Dot is going to be the top end unless you pick up a can of H110/W296 and try that. My 357's go back and forth between Blue Dot and H110/W296 for top velocity with 158's. Some of them are higher with one and some with the other before pressure shuts the show down.

For a dog gun I would be looking for a 125 at top speed, the XTP is a tough bullet and even in the 125 grain loading I would expect it to penetrate even a BIG pitbull completely with plenty of steam left to kill another dog. I would probably look to a Gold Dot or a Golden Sabre instead, in a 125 grain hollow point, loaded with Blue Dot right to the edge of very slightly sticky cases. I would expect them to have less penetration and more likely to stop a fight instantly. Kind of like shooting a coyote with a 30-06 and a 22-250, the fast lighter bullet just hammers them where they might run a while from the bigger slower bullet. In stopping an attack I want a light fast bullet, all of the critters I have shot over the years have taught me that is what works best when it has to stop RIGHT NOW. The downside is that if the angle is wrong the light fast bullet might not do the job on the first shot, but they WILL impact the situation.
HSMITH is offline  
Old March 3, 2007, 10:39 PM   #3
Trapper L
Senior Member
Join Date: November 20, 2006
Location: South Texas
Posts: 804
I wouldn't recommend any of the above. The Blue Dot is going to have a fabulous muzzle flash considering most of it is going to be blown out unburned- your barrel is too short. You will need to back up to a faster burning powder than those listed. The Power Pistol is a maybe but expect a lot of muzzle flash. I would go with something like 231 or HP 38 or if you have any Unique. I have never had a good full power accurate load from Green Dot in the 357 mag. Your mileage may vary.
Trapper L is offline  
Old March 4, 2007, 08:32 PM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: June 21, 2002
Posts: 2,019
Interesting information Trapper, are you running your ammo over a chronograph? I did.
HSMITH is offline  
Old March 5, 2007, 12:57 AM   #5
Senior Member
Join Date: November 6, 2001
Posts: 1,018
I shot a .357mag with a 2 1/2" barrel and my best load was with 125gr xtp's using Blue Dot with CCI 500 primers. The combo I used preferred standard primers not magnum. 13.7 grains of Blue Dot, CCI500, and 125 xtp's gave about 1275 fps in the 2 1/2" barrel. I found my pistol preferred 125's rather than 158 or 140's. 125's should do a good job on dogs or other threats.
rg1 is offline  
Old March 5, 2007, 09:32 PM   #6
Trapper L
Senior Member
Join Date: November 20, 2006
Location: South Texas
Posts: 804
Yepper, I almost always run mine thru the old Oehler. I didn't get much in the way of any consistant speeds from Blue Dot and groups were not so hot. I never tried a lighter bullet as the 158's had enough powder blown in the wind. Yep, I was using mag primers- that's all I use. I guess give it a try- never know unless you try.
I looked up the load I have for my Smith snubby and I am shooting 8.4 grs Unique under a Speer 146 gr half jacket HP SWC. I couldn't tell you where that might be with the newer reloading data so check before you even consider trying it. It will shoot far better than I can at 25 yds.
Trapper L is offline  
Old March 5, 2007, 10:14 PM   #7
Senior Member
Join Date: April 11, 2006
Location: Northeast Ohio
Posts: 3,403
Check here for some suggestions:

I've used W231 for both .357 Mag and .38Spl+P with 125gr Hornady XTP HP's for short barrels and they work well. Bluedot burns too slowly to be of much use in a snubby. Universal works fairly well also. Never had any experience with Greendot.
skeeter1 is offline  
Old March 6, 2007, 12:35 AM   #8
Senior Member
Join Date: October 5, 2006
Posts: 184
its hard to beet w296 and 125 grain xtp.Massad Ayoob, Evan Marshall and Ed Sanow,"The most effective handgun round on the market - regardless of
caliber - is the Federal .357 Magnum 125 grain jacketed hollowpoint
(357B). This load has more stopping power than any other handgun bullet
(and this includes more powerful rounds like the .41 and .44 Magnums)."of course they were talking of stopping power,not killing power but theres not much difference.
ziggy222 is offline  
Old March 10, 2007, 09:15 AM   #9
Senior Member
Join Date: January 1, 2000
Location: Roanoke, Virginia
Posts: 2,678
.357mag in a 2.5"

In my Ruger 2 1/4 inch SP-101 I have gone to HYDRO-SHOK in 158 grain.
The pin makes expansion imminant and the round has 2 advantages:
[1] It shoots point of aim.
[2] Subtract 70 fps for each inch off a 6 inch barrel. I got 1100 fps.
MADISON is offline  
Old March 10, 2007, 01:53 PM   #10
Senior Member
Join Date: May 26, 2000
Location: Hastings, Nebrasksa - the Hear
Posts: 2,129
Powder Selection

For maximum power and velocity (in this instance, they're about the same thing) one selects a powder according to bullet weight. Check several loading manuals and see which powder gives your selected bullet weight the most velocity.

Yes, a shorter barrel will normally produce less velocity than a longer barrel. However, the fastest load in a longer barrel will normally be the fastest load in a shorter barrel as well.

However, as has been pointed out, maximum power is not the total equation. One must be able to control the weapon in repeat shots. One must be able to reload if needed. The loading must accurate enough for the purpose at hand. One prefers the firearm serve longer than six shots. A good, solid medium power load might be preferable to a monster, maximum power load.

All the loads mentioned prior will give good service. Another 'old timer' load is a 125 grain JHP, an upper level dose of Unique and a tight crimp. (Can't remember off the top of my head, but it should be any decent load manual.) That was considered a good self-defense load in the '60s and '70s and probably still works. Unique is out of fashion, I hear, but any similar burn rate powder would do the job.
There ain't no free lunch, except Jesus.

Check out updated journal at
Archie is offline  

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

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 08:02 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2016 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent:
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.07434 seconds with 9 queries