Unique, lead bullets and cowboys?????? [Archive] - Glock Talk

PDA

View Full Version : Unique, lead bullets and cowboys??????


Bren
04-09-2014, 15:17
I was getting ready to load up some .38 spl. cowboy action shooting loads (super light loads for shooting about 15-20 yards, maybe) for our .357 Vaqueros.

My turret press was already set up for .38's, so I checked my powder and I was set for 4.5 grains of Unique. I had been loading 158 gr. plated round nose bullets, last time I loaded for revolver. I have never loaded lead bullets before - always jacketed or plated - so I went to the manuals to see what they had to say.

For Unique:

Lee says, for 158 gr. lead bullet - starting charge is 4.0 gr., "never exceed" 4.3 gr.

Then Speer's manual gives me a starting load of 2.8 gr. and a maximum charge of 3.1 gr. So Lee is starting almost a grain above Speer's max load.

Then Alliant powder says, for a 158 gr Speer LSWC, "charge weight 4.7 gr." - it doesn't give a max and min, so I'm guessing that is a starting weight and it's higher than the max charge from Lee or Speer. To make it even better, in their cowboy loading section, Alliant gives a "max" charge of 4.5 gr. of Unique for 158 gr. lead round nose in a .357. So, the .38 special load is higher than the max load for a .357.

Can anybody explain this crap? I'm no expert on reloading, but I have never seen load data that conflicted that much.

Colorado4Wheel
04-09-2014, 15:26
Then Alliant powder says, for a 158 gr Speer LSWC, "charge weight 4.7 gr." - it doesn't give a max and min, so I'm guessing that is a starting weight and it's higher than the max charge from Lee or Speer. To make it even better, in their cowboy loading section, Alliant gives a "max" charge of 4.5 gr. of Unique for 158 gr. lead round nose in a .357. So, the .38 special load is higher than the max load for a .357.

Can anybody explain this crap? I'm no expert on reloading, but I have never seen load data that conflicted that much.

Alliant list MAX. You reduce by 10% for starting. It's right in the manual and on the website when you hit the "I accept" button.

You need to list the complete load data and not just look at the charge. Bullet type, OAL etc. COMPLETE data. It's useless to compare it otherwise. But I am sure many people will try anyway :whistling:

Bren
04-09-2014, 16:09
Never mind. Turns out I looked at the .38 S&W data for the super-low charges from the Speer manual. 4.0 - 4.7 in the .38 spl. page, matches up with the Alliant 4.23 - 4.7 gr. charge.

I'll probably go with some 4.0 gr. loads to see how it works.

fredj338
04-09-2014, 17:35
Never mind. Turns out I looked at the .38 S&W data for the super-low charges from the Speer manual. 4.0 - 4.7 in the .38 spl. page, matches up with the Alliant 4.23 - 4.7 gr. charge.

I'll probably go with some 4.0 gr. loads to see how it works.

Yeah, when I first read the charge rates, I started reaching for my Speer, I know Unique is GTG well beyond 4.5gr in the 38sp w/ 158grLSWC. My working load is 5gr, but shot in 357mags, yes it should be considered +p.