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What powder for .357?

On hand I have Accurate #5, #7, Powerpistol, Universal and Clays. I am willing to try something else if needed. I also plan to eventually order some dies for .44 Rem Mag.
 

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ON THE OTHER HAND

Universal Clays for 'mediums', AA5/AA7 for about the same, PP too, Clays for 'plinkers'.
Wanna go fast? H110, N110, W296.
 

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I assume you are thinking 357 mag not 357 sig?

I am using 2400 for 357mag for most loads today. Good general powder. For the 357sig, AA9 is my only powder because of bullet setback issues.
 

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If you want your magnum to be a "Magnum" the slow burners are the way to go. 2400 is the traditional magnum powder but many people think H110 and WW 296 give higher velocities. All three will give you a lot of muzzle flash and that nice magnum sound - you know, where the dust comes down from the ceiling at the indoor range and the leaves and grass are blown aside at the outdoor range.
 

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I've been using 9.8 gr. of Blue Dot behind 158-gr. plated semi wadcutters, with a standard Winchester SP primer. It's a little less than full power, but it doesn't produce a lot of flash or bang and gives excellent accuracy in a 686.
 

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I'll second the Blue Dot.

I use 14.5 grains for 125gr jhp's, and 12.5 for 158 jhp's.

Winchester brass and small pistol primers.

These loads require a heavy crimp.

NOTE:

I started working-up these loads many years ago using the 1980's Speer #11 manual.

Later (newer) editions have considerably "watered down" loads when compared to these.

MAG-63
 

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I use 14.5 grains for 125gr jhp's, and 12.5 for 158 jhp's. Winchester brass and small pistol primers.

These loads require a heavy crimp.

NOTE:

I started working-up these loads many years ago using the 1980's Speer #11 manual.

Later (newer) editions have considerably "watered down" loads when compared to these.


I'll say...the Speer #13 manual lists 10.2 grains as the maximum with a 158 gr. bullet!
 

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Yes they are a bit hot, but I shoot them in a Model 27 (N frame).

Through a K frame model 65 they are downright abusive!

From the Speer #11 c1987:

125gr jhp/sp: 14.3-16.3gr Blue Dot

158gr jhp/sp: 11.0-13.0gr Blue Dot

Much warmer than today's published loads.

MAG-63
 

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I'm at work at the moment and don't have my load data in front of me, but I've had pretty good luck with Accurate #7 for 158gr. JSP loads and Accurate #5 for lighter 110gr. and 125gr. loads.
 

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For full power loads, I'd recommend 2400, Lil' Gun, or Ramshot Enforcer, in no particular order. For plain old blasting loads, Unique or Ramshot Zip both get the job done for me.
 

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When I was younger, an old-timer (probably my current age) had an excellent reloading book that recommended 2400. I like it because it uses quite more powder than others and makes it hard to throw a double charge. The barking dogs will reply that you should pay close attention to avoid such incidents, but things happen. It seems a bit messier than others, causing a more of a clean-up after the fun is over.
 

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Magnums

I've played around with most of the slow burning Magnum powders for a while and it always comes back to the same one for consistant accurate shooting with both my 686 and 629 Smith and Wesson's.

H-110

It's kind of dirty and you can't play around much with the charge weight but it has real "shootability" in my guns.

It also throws consistantly from my powder measure despite the fine grain.

The only problem is the big distributor where I buy my components sells out within two weeks of a shipment. Wonder why???

Dog
 

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H-110 hoooaaaah

Large quantities of H-110 get the job done.

I am using the Hogden book max load of 22.0 gr H-110 with 125 gr JSP and magnum Win primers. Out of my S&W 686-4 6" I get about 1700 fps and quite manageable recoil. The report and flame are crowd pleasers. This load is also VERY accurate.

d.
 

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The only reloading I have done with the 357 has been using Red Dot for some light target loads. I hear very good things about Lil Gun though for hotter loads. I wanted to try it, and looked all over for it at the gun stores around me, but nobody stocked it. I even asked one place to order some in for me, but he never did, and has since gone out of business. I suppose I'll have to break down and order some online one of these days. But I really haven't had time for reloading lately anyway.
 

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I'm an Alliant man, and I can recommend Bluedot with Magnum primers. (CCI 550)

10.2 or 10.5gr of bluedot with 158gr plated roundnose bullets and you have plenty of stopping power. (1350fps)

12-13gr of bluedot with 125gr JHP will also do a good job. (1500fps)

H-110 is another powder that works VERY well, as does lil'gun.

H-110 is a little harder to load with a disk powder measure, but, it works very well.

I use H-110 in .357 Maximum round with my father's Ruger Super Blackhawk. I never knew a pistol could kick like that.
(I chrono'd 180gr bullets at over 1600fps and 158gr at close to 1700fps)

Enjoy!!!

-Warlock
 
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