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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi AGAIN fellas, Question: I started reloading recently as some of you might know. I made my first round, a .38 special. I sat the bullet on the cannelure. The bullet is a Hornady XTP 158 gr. When I did so on a template round, the overall dimension is less than the 1.550 all the info I have on this round calls for.

This is my hand loaded round:

This is the factory round (130 gr)


Did I sink it too low? If not, the canellure is way high. Here are some photos.


The factory round is crimped at the cannelure and is also less than 1.550, see the calipers for exact measurements. I am using these rounds out a rifle. I was told by someone that they are fine, but want to make sure and trust you guys as you know what you are doing, so I think anyway!


I also made a few .357 rounds. I sat them and crimped them on the cannelure, these look fine, same length as the factory purchased ones. The middle round is the factory round below.

Am I over stressing myself? Also, I used 14.5 grains of 4227 powder in that 357 round. Exactly what the book called for, for starting amount of powder.
 

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Find full load data specifically using the bullets and powder you have that lists an OAL. Physically, a shorter overall length is no big deal in the mechanical operation of a revolver. You'll see wadcutter rounds loaded pretty much flush with the case. The big deal is that if there's more bullet sticking into the case, the space the powder in is smaller. This can make pressures go up some. So find Hornady load data that specifies how much of the powder you're using to use with that particular bullet seated to the cannelure, and you're good to go.
 

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Can't compare OAL between different bullet shapes. Well, you can, but your head will hurt. Various reloading books and tables should specify OAL for different bullet brands/types/shapes. My guess is that if you're at the cannelure, you're OK. At 14.5GR per round, you are going to go through that that 4227 FAST. A friend and I reloaded some 158 gr LSWC .38's and the starting told for Titegroup is 3.2 grains..... I realize if its 4227 you've got, you may as well use it up, but if you're looking for a long terms recipe, most of us choose faster burning powders. Though I think TiteWad refers to a shotgun wad, as this was originally a shotgun powder, it may also no refer to the spending habits of reloaders who look for lots of rounds per pound of powder.
 

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Yeah, I found the data in the Lee book. I was just concerned about the length of the round being shorter than specified on the 38 special because seating the bullet to the cannelure was making the round short and making the round 1.550 had the cannelure too high.

To be clear: 4227 powder was 14.5 grains for 357 magnum. 9.0 grains for 38 special

Sorry, I wasn't clear enough.
 

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158 gr XTP 10.0 gr H4227 864 fps 1.455" WSP Hodgdon Suggested starting load: 9.0 gr

Pressure: 15,500 CUP from handloads.com
 

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bullseye is popular but very smoky/dirty. Titlegroup and similar are very popular. I'm using Unique because I was able to get 16#. see http://www.reloadammo.com/38loads.htm 158-160 grain JHP or JSP (Jacketed Hollow or Soft Point) Bullseye 3.5 gr. 805 FPS; Unique 4.2 gr. 800; Unique 4.9 gr. 858; 2400 7.6 gr. 850; Universal 4.4 gr. 778; HP38 3.7 gr. 819; HS6 6.3 gr. 701; HS6 6.5 gr. 914; No. 2 4.0 gr. 756; No. 5 5.8 gr. 841; PowerPistol 5.9 gr. 838; 231 (+P) 4.4 gr. 720*; 540 (+P) 6.6 gr. 800*; 2400 (+P) 7.8 gr. 910*; 2400 (+P) 8.2 gr. 955*; Unique(+P) 5.0 gr. 928*.......... * All PLUS P loads for guns designed for it (20,000 PSI) // IMO, it's partly a matter of what you can get, and partly a matter of peak pressure vs. grains per load. If you're planning other calibers, like 9mm or .40, very small powder charges can be hard to manage and .40 can be unfriendly to very fast powders.
 

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1.550 is the max overall length for .38 spl. your fine. BTW 4227 is good for .357 but not really ideal for .38 spl. Can you use it? Yes but go get some bullseye, W231, Unique,HP38 or some other fast burning pistol powder. Even most of the shotgun powders are better. Also 1 pound of bullseye or 231 will last you many thousands of rounds.
 

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Clinger
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Because 38 is an inherently easier round to load , has been around a long time and is versatile there is a blinding amount of info.. Narrow your focus on what it is you want the round to do... target plinking .... a load for a 2in revolver may not be optimal for a lever gun.. the wide array of powders are used for particular applications.

As far as your over all length being different ....consider this... just because you are seating the bullet to the cannelure and the same amount of bullet is sticking out of the case doesn't mean the case itself is not of different lengths...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My purpose right now, while I learn to reload is to shoot the 38 and the 357 out or a 20" Rossi lever gun, to plink. I have the following right now: 4227 powder, small magnum primers and small regular, Hornady XTP 158 gr and Sierra 158 JSP bullets (100 each). The brass I have is brass I fired from factory rounds, American Eagle and Federal. Thanks in advance for all your help and advise fellas.
 

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Clinger
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Your components will function together..and the 38s should feed just fine in the lever gun as well ( remember no pointy bullets in a tube feed gun) ..IMHO they are on the expensive side for plinking.. here is another link... it shows a number of suitable powders ( only Hogdon , IMR and Winchester) for any given caliber and weight .. I trust you can navigate the site.... http://www.hodgdonreloading.com/
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks fellas. With so much info and product out there, it is a bit overwhelming, but fun either way. I loaded some ammo last night. .357 Mag with 14.5 gr (Hornady 158 gr XTP) with 4227 and some .38 special with 9.0-9.3 grains of 4227 with both Hornady XTP (158 gr) and Sierra 158gr JSP). I will be taking them to the range to test probably this weekend sometime. You pros out there see any issues with these loads? Anyone ever use small pistol MAGNUM primers on their .38 special rounds with a starting load of powder? Curious.
 
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