New test - 38 special & HS6 [Archive] - Glock Talk

PDA

View Full Version : New test - 38 special & HS6


Kentguy
11-25-2012, 12:15
Greetings,

I have some 158g XTP HP and some 140g XTP HP bullets so I thought this might be a good time to try out some HS6 for some 38 special loads. I have never used this powder/bullet combination before so what better time than now.

I have run test using these two weight bullets in 357 mag. only I was using Allinat's 2400 powder. I think this powder is a bit too slow for 38 special so I wanted something just a bit faster.

What I have on the shelf that might match the burn rate I want to use for this series of test is; (Hodgdon Burn Rate Chart)
Winchester 231 #29
Hodgdon Universal #32
Alliant Power Pistol #33
Hodgdon HS6 #42
Winchester AutoComp #43

I like HS6 in other caliber/bullet weights but I though this might be a good one for this application. My test gun is a S&W 38 Special model 10-6 w/4" heavy barrel.

Any thoughts or advise before I get going here?

WiskyT
11-25-2012, 13:38
My guess is you'll get a lot of unburned powder. I loaded up some 357's using HS7 at max according to the manual and it was so dirty I had to brush under the extractor star every two cylinders full or It would tie the gun up. I still have a box of it and I'm too lazy to pull it and too lazy to shoot it. Those slower ball powders are real messy at lower pressures like 38spl. The cure for the HS7 problem would have been more powder as the load only ran a 125 at about 1100fps, but I wasn't going to go over published data just to use up half a pound of something that was given to me.

Kentguy
11-25-2012, 14:05
WiskyT... "My guess is you'll get a lot of unburned powder."

are you referring to HS6 or HS7?

WiskyT
11-25-2012, 14:19
WiskyT... "My guess is you'll get a lot of unburned powder."

are you referring to HS6 or HS7?

They're similar powders, slowish ball powders, and will probably behave similarly. I would load a small batch only and see how they do. Universal would be a better choice IMO for the 18-21kpsi you'll be running at. HS6 is better suited to 9mm/40SW at more like 35kpsi.

Kentguy
11-25-2012, 14:30
Thanks... :thumbsup:

Kentguy
12-01-2012, 16:46
New test update:

WiskyT, you were correct... "My guess is you'll get a lot of unburned powder." I wouldn't say a lot but certainly more than I'm use to seeing.

I have a question for all you number's guys.

I guess for some time now I have been trying to wrap my head around the effects of SD on over-all cartridge performance. In previous tests "generally speaking" when my standard deviation is in the teens or single digits my grouping are very close and accuracy in general is good... except for today's test. SD numbers were high yet my load performance was very good?

For comparison:
Hornady custom Ammunition
158g XTP HP
Velocity - box listed 800 fps. / my 6 shot average 734.8 fps out of S&W 10-6
OAL - 1.435"

Here is my load data:

Weather - sunny and 56 degrees with almost no wind

Case - Mixed Nickel (used)
Case length - 1.155" (standard)
Primer - Federal small pistol #100
Bullet - 158g XTP HP (Hornady)
Bullet length - .670"
Powder - Hodgdon HS6 @ 6.2g
Powder range - 5.1g up to 6.5g (rated +P 800 fps) (Hornady)
Burn rate - #42 (Hodgdon)
Bullet seating OAL - 1.450" (Hornady)
Velocity -6.2g - 758,776,719,729,638,724 = 724 fps
Standard Deviation = 47.55208
Test gun - S&W 38 special model 10-6 w/4" bull barrel

Now am I just stressing over numbers or am I really missing something?

What is your target numbers for acceptable Standard Deviation in your test loads?

Any thoughts...?

WiskyT
12-01-2012, 17:07
I think your SD and ES are indicative of one of two things. One, and I think the most likely, is that HS6 just doesn't burn well at the kind of pressures you are working with. Even though Hornady calls it +P, I have found their data to be very conservative, so it is still probably below even standard pressure. Use that HS6 in 357 mag with the same bullet, and watch the SD and ES tighten right up.

The second thing it could be is you are too close to the chrono. If you had those numbers and were using a fast powder like 231 or Bullseye, I would say you were too close to the chrono as blast will screw up readings.

But your numbers are exactly as what I figured they would be like. The accuracy satisfies you, and that's good. But, You can get the same velocity, same or better accuracy with a faster powder. You won't get the unburned flakes, and you'll get better numbers over your chrono.

Unique works really well with 38+P loads. I run 5.4 with a cast 158 and get 825 out of a 2" gun, so it should be closer to 900 for a 4" gun. A jacketed bullet will run slower, but if you go to Alliant's sight, you will see that the charge is a bit higher too. You will easily break 800fps with a +P load of Unique and a jacketed bullet out of your 4" gun.

I had a few ounces of AA#5 left over from a shotgun slug load I was working on. I load a 165 cast bullet in 40SW and tired it out for that. I used 6.5 grains based on data I found for AA5 and a 180 cast bullet. It shot okay, but left unbruned powder all over the inside of the chamber. I'm sure increasing the chrage would have cleaned it up, but I wasn't going to start free-lancing with loads so I just ran a dirty load for a few hundred rounds to finish the stuff up. A lot of the medium burners suffer from data that is too light. Ball powders seem to exaggerate the the unbruned powder problem IME. The flake powders seem to run cleaner, either that or their data is better.

F106 Fan
12-01-2012, 17:25
I think your SD and ES are indicative of one of two things. One, and I think the most likely, is that HS6 just doesn't burn well at the kind of pressures you are working with. Even though Hornady calls it +P, I have found their data to be very conservative, so it is still probably below even standard pressure. Use that HS6 in 357 mag with the same bullet, and watch the SD and ES tighten right up.


In many cases, Speer #14 has a starting load at or above a Hornady max load.

It might be worth comparing data and then flipping a coin as to which to believe.

Richard

WiskyT
12-01-2012, 17:36
In many cases, Speer #14 has a starting load at or above a Hornady max load.

It might be worth comparing data and then flipping a coin as to which to believe.

Richard

Good point. I just loaded up and chrono'd 10 rounds of 155 XTP's with SR4756 in 40 SW using Hornady data. I was at the max Hornady data and the load came up over 100fps short out of a longer Glock barrel than the SW barrel Hornady used. Glock barrels are nearly always a tiny bit faster than "regular" barrels and I had an extra 0.5" in bbl length to boot. I had undurned powder too. Comparing the same load with Nosler and Sierra for their 150JHP's, my load was basically a starting load and my velocity was exactly what they said it would be. Even Hodgdon's online data had Hornady's "max" as their start load, and Hodgdon's max was much higher than Hornady's.

So, since my results are identicle to two other reputable sources, I'm going to abandon the Hornady data. I bet when I load the next batch with 0.5 grains more, the velocity will be up where it's supposed to be and the chamber will be clean.

I call it "data shopping". Doctor shopping is what pill heads do to get the answer they want, more pills. i do it with data. I search data until I get one that validates my intuitive ideas about a load. It might be a little daring, but I figure none of these companies are going to publish dangerous data. On the rare occasion they make a misprint, they always "recall" the data they screwed up on.

I would check out Hodgdon and Speer data to see if they give you a green light to up your load. You should easily get 850fps with HS6 and not exceed max pressure.

shotgunred
12-01-2012, 21:55
i have two words for you.....

RED DOT!

Kentguy
12-02-2012, 09:17
So I did a like deeper digging in my manuals and based on my objective - (to duplicate a factory load) here is the powder I should be using based on this information;
Hornady custom Ammunition 38 Special
158g XTP HP
Velocity - box listed 800 fps. / my 6 shot average 734.8 fps out of S&W 10-6
OAL - 1.435"

Hodgdon 2012 Annual Manual
Tested out of a 7.7" barrel
OAL tested @ 1.455"
4.6g of H38 = 807 fps
Burn rate #28 (Hodgdon)
Hornady 8th Edition Manual
Tested out of a 4" barrel
OAL tested @ 1.450"
5.1g of Unique = 800 fps
Burn rate #31 (Hodgdon)
Lyman 49th Edition
Tested out of a 4" barrel
OAL tested @ 1.480"
5.2g of Unique = 761 fps
Burn rate #31 (Hodgdon)
Speer has no load data for a 158g JHP bullet

So If I want to reach without climbing over factory velocity I should be using Unique.

WiskyT
12-02-2012, 15:01
I think Unique is an excellent all around powder for what you want to do. Speer should show 38+P data for a jacketed 158, maybe they dropped that too.

Speer doesn't believe in JACKETED 158's in 38spl at standard pressure and neither do I. Obviously Hornady and others do. The issue is that the long jacketed bullet can get stuck in the bore with a gun that has a large barrel to cylinder gap.

The way to do what you want to do, IMO, is to use cast bullets. They are much cheaper, and won't stick in the bore with anything resembling a normal load. Uniqe works very well with cast bullets. 5.0 of Unique, thereabouts, should be exactly what you want with a cheap 158 cast bullet. HP38 will do it too, and without much fuss, but I find Unique works better if you want to run loads a little hotter with a cast bullet. Unique will also give you your 800fps with a jacketed bullet, but it might be getting into +P territory.