new lever gun!!!...... anyone got any .357 mag ammo advice? [Archive] - Glock Talk


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tree house
04-16-2004, 17:47
Posted a few weeks back looking for opinions on a pistol caliber lever gun for use as a short-range deer gun.

Ended up getting a Marlin 1894CS in .357 mag today. Wanted a .44 but got a great deal and couldn't turn it down. This 1894 CS is sweet!!!! Checkered walnut straight stock, 18" barrel, 9 shot tube...

A a couple of quick question for those knowledgeable...

1) this gun has a microgroove barrel..... Can I shoot any lead, FMJ, or HP factory ammo?

2) what is a good deer hunting load in .357??? This is my first gun in this caliber.


04-16-2004, 21:14
Hey man I'd try CorBon or something 180 grn.The extra bbl. length should keep the velocity up.I think you'd be awright with hardcast.Micro-groove supposedly doesn't like the soft lead roundnose type but i've never encountered too much problem.

04-17-2004, 19:44
Tree house,

GA. Arms makes ammo called: “Deer Stopper” in 357 Magnum. 158gr. jacked hollow point +P.
Phone # 1-800-624-6861
I know you will enjoy your new rifle, they are fun just to plink around with, and easy to handle in the deer stand.

tree house
04-19-2004, 06:56
Red Pike, Do you think I can shoot +P ammo in this .357 Marlin? I would think so but I can't find anything on their website or in the owners manual. You would think so considering the same basic action handles .44 mag. Thanks!

04-19-2004, 12:40
Two things...

Usually, heavy loaded lead bullets have serious accuracy problems when fired through a micro-groove barrel.

There is no such thing as +P .357 Magnum.

04-19-2004, 14:47
Shoot yeah,
Deer stopper ammo is manufactured to meet the pressure requirements for handgun hunting in Georgia. (6” Barrel) So there is no doubt that a Marlin rifle can handle the +P.
If you are not sure, ask GA.Arms about it.

The +P we are referring to is, Ga. Arms way of letting you know that the “pressure” (+P) is a little more aggressive compared to the regular 357 ammo. I guess they borrow it from 38 Special +P.

04-20-2004, 02:52
I second the "heck yeah" on the +P's... They use the same action in the pistol cartridge models as they do thier bigger models.
Enjoy it, I use a Ruger .44 mag carbine (the old style) for deer hunting and it works great out to 100 yards or so. I expect you're .357 mag will be about the same.

04-20-2004, 06:26
Originally posted by Red-Pike
The +P we are referring to is, Ga. Arms way of letting you know that the “pressure” (+P) is a little more aggressive compared to the regular 357 ammo. I guess they borrow it from 38 Special +P.

+P is a SAAMI recognized standard. There is no SAAMI +P standard for .357 mag. The only rounds which have a +P standard are .38 Special, 9 mm, and .45 ACP.

What Georgia Arms really should tell you is that they have chosen to exceed pressure levels as recommed by the firearms industry's own safety standards organization. By using the +P designation they are trying to mislead you into believing that they are still following a recognized and safety tested standard.


04-20-2004, 14:42
44Special, 38 Super and 257 Roberts to name just a few of the + P and there are even more than these.

04-20-2004, 14:50

How careless of them!
Wonder how they stayed in business so long ?...... you know?....... With all this untested , unsafe, high-pressure ammo. ^8

04-20-2004, 15:08
One safety tip, though I haven't seen 'em in years, shy away from any POINTED cartridges as the chance of a chain reaction in the mag tube, though rare, is still possible. A friend has taken medium-sized Kentucky Whitetail out to 50 using the heaviest factory Rem JSP and open sighrs.

04-20-2004, 17:25
Federal Premium 158 grain semi jacketed flat point. Its one THUMPER of a .357 round, and its not ridiculously expensive. Shot an armadillo with it once, wow, not much left...

(armadillos are pests around here)

04-20-2004, 17:43
What about the Win Partition Gold 180gr - should be a good round from a long gun.

04-20-2004, 20:37
Originally posted by Red-Pike

How careless of them!
Wonder how they stayed in business so long ?...... you know?....... With all this untested , unsafe, high-pressure ammo. ^8

First, I have no idea how long Georgia arms has been in business, first I ever heard of their ammo was about a year ago. Their web site makes no mention of how long they have been in business.

Second, I never said there ammo was unsafe or untested. I said they were misleading people by using an industry standard designation for high pressure, but still safe in modern guns, ammunition.

Other manufactures such as Buffalo Bore make ammunition which is higher than SAMMI standards without misleading people by using the SAAMI designation. They use terms like .45-70 Magnum, .357 Heavy Magnum, and .45 Colt Heavy to inform people.

Further more when I check my Speer reloading manual for the .357 Magnum I see velocities from a 6" Ruger revolver signifigantly higher than their supposed +P rounds. Gerogia Arms "Deer Stopper" 158 gr +P round supposedly does 1250 FPS from a 6" revolver. My speer loading manual shows a max load of 296 powder at 1460 fps from a 6" revolver. (BTW the same load in a 18 1/2" Marlin should get 1862 fps)

Then compare their velocities to any other major manufacturer. What Georgia Arms calls +P gets the same velocity or less than other manufuacturers standard pressure rounds.

Since Georgia Arms markets ammo as +P when there is no industry accepted standard for +P (let alone a +P+ in a .40 S+W) in that caliber they are using deceptive marketing tactics. Since Georgia Arms doesn't list the results of pressure testing on their web site I can only assume they are either loading ammunition above recognized safe levels or they are lying.

Personally I think they are full of crap. Their ammuntion is probably safe to shoot because it doesn't look to me like it is loaded to any higher perssure than standard ammo, at least they are not getting any higher velocities out of it.

I have no beef with Georgia Arms ammunition, I've never tried it, but their improper use of the +P designation has to make me wonder about them.

04-20-2004, 21:53
There is an industry standard for + P in like the 38 + P,it's 1500 psi higher than standard so maybe the same thing exist for this 357 round. Just because it's + P it may not be safe in all guns and they're trying to get around litigation with it's misuse or possibility thereof. I am just offering this for thought. From my way of thinking + P should be fired in the appropriate magnum , i.e 38 + P in 357 and so forth. Even in guns rated for + P shooting it shortens the working life unless it's stout built or thats how I've always seen it in the paerwork of both ammo and guns for + P. I'm sure they make a safe round pressure wise but it may be just hype trying to sell their product.

04-21-2004, 07:11
Originally posted by firminw
There is an industry standard for + P in like the 38 + P,it's 1500 psi higher than standard so maybe the same thing exist for this 357 round.

My point is that a +P standard DOES NOT exist for the .357 Mag. The only calibers that have SAAMI recognized +P presure limits are the .38 Special, 9mm, and .45 ACP. That's it, no other rounds have an industry accepted standard for +P and there is no industry standard for +P+ in ANY caliber.

Many of the SAAMI presure limits are conservative, many of them were developed because there are lots of older and weaker guns still out there which could be damaged by higher pressure rounds. I personally have loaded .45 Colt ammuntion for my TC Contender and Ruger Blackhawk that I'm sure was WAY over SAAMI standards judging by the velocities I was getting. And yet there were no signs of excessive pressure such as flattened primers or sticking cases.

If someone tells you they make +P ammo in any caliber other than .38 Special, 9mm, or .45 ACP they are:

1. Ignorant of what +P means.


2. Lying to you.

If you look at Georgia Arms web site and the claimed velocity for their supposed +P ammo it's not going any faster than most major manufacturers standard pressure ammo. Either they don't know what +P means or they are purposely misusing the term as marketing hype. I'm makeing no other judgements about the safety, quality, or suitability of their ammo. I've searched the posts here on Glock Talk and many people are very satisfied with GA ammo. I found only 1 post were a person claimed they had a problem with GA ammo and GA promptly replaced it (as any manufacturer should).

My problem isn't that Georgia Arms is making unsafe ammo, I've never said that. My problem with GA is that they are using misleading and false labeling of their product.

04-21-2004, 07:38
There are many + P rounds if you think these are the only 3 then thats your opinion. They may be industry hype but I know quite a few you dont mention. Look in your Speer reloading manual and you'll see the 257 Roberts + P. There are + P for 38 Super , 44 Special,(not in Speer manual but available) and others. Dont make positive statements you cant back up with fact. In that same Speer manual you'll see the 38 Super + P also , it's in my Speer # 12. I dont know what you're quoting but it may have misinformed you. Theres a lot more that I wont mention but you're the one who brought up the Speer manual so I'll quote from that. If you'll cite your source and it can be corroberated then I'll stand corrected and I'll adjust my veiw but I'm afraid on you're point you may be wrong . In my post I was trying to allay youre concerns for this company selling unsafe ammo. While you didn't come out and say it a reasonable person could infer from your statement that they were either selling unsafe ammo or were trying to mislead people. They may be trying to sell hyped ammo but I dont think in these litigious times they would knowingly sell unsafe product. It may or may not be above industry anything but does it really matter. If their figures dont add up that shows that at least they tested it or are claiming to have tested it. Tree house was wanting some advice on ammo selection and you haven't offered him not one option all you have done is try to make others look uninformed. I want to get along here but I "Always" quote from things I , above a reasonable doubt, know to be facts. There are too many people here who know way more than me so I'll always stick to the facts. Like I said if I'm wrong I'll admit it but trying to make people look foolish always backfires.

P.S. I got to thinking I was a little rash in my response so I went to SAAMI's website and could not find anything on +P specifically, a quick run through I'll admit but I did find something interesting. The only reference to any pistol caliber as +P was for 38 Super so you are wrong +P does exist for at least one caliber you did not list. Speer in Manual 12 states, and I quote,"In 1974,SAAMI adopted thr +P headstamp for cartridges having two pressure limits." This is the section entitled 38 Super Auto +P. This is found on page 502,1st sentence of paragraph 7. On page 186 you'll find an entire section on 257 Roberts +P. So I guess SAMMI,Speer, Winchester and I do not know what we are talking about. I am glad to be part of the group who is uninformed. I used to be like you when I believed in the Toof Fairy,the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus

04-21-2004, 11:28
Actually I was talking about handgun ammuntion.

The .38 Super is often called a +P round to differentiate it from the older, but same case sized, .38 ACP round. In the case of the .38 Super the +P and Super designations are redundant. There are not 2 pressure specifications for the .38 Super, there is only 1 and it is the same if you call it just a .38 Super or a .38 Super +P.

Here is a good site to educate yourself about +P.

It's not just my opinion that the .38 Special, 9mm, and .45 ACP are the only handgun cartridges with a SAAMI +P specification, It's a FACT!!

Now who is looking foolish?

04-21-2004, 11:59
I guess SAAMI ,Speer ,Winchester, and I are wrong. I most humbly seek your forgiveness. I am a man of my word and I took the word of true experts and was proven wrong. Go figure. Well even in being proved wrong I learned something new so it's not a total waste. I most sincerely apologize. If not the Georgia Bullets what would you suggest for a good 357 Mag. rifle round? Pass on your expertise so others can learn.

04-21-2004, 23:56
I dont know what is wrong with me, I guess I've got to much time on my hands. Too many times people post things that are just ol' wivestales taken as fact and I incorrectly ASSUMED this was the case here but I was wrong. I'm sure every sage person here has examples of this. I'm not really an AS***** I just act like it sometimes. I'm truly sorry for my previous outburst and I'll try my best in the future to see it doesn't happen again. I'll be as good as I can but this site is the closest thing to sitting around a gunshop and shootin' the breeze as I get these days. Please forgive me and I'll stay as quiet as my personality allows. I've let my hummingbird *** get overloaded by my alligator mouth for the last time.

04-22-2004, 15:44
Hey! Don’t forget about me.
Both of you were right on certain aspects. The ole adage “2 heads are better than 1.”
Some of the toughest problem in the business world are hashed out with a good debate.
Like you said, it made you look a little deeper and in doing so, we learned something.

Keep those keyboards burning, and I’ll be reading through the smoke.

Your apologetic friend,

04-22-2004, 15:51
Thanks for the encourraging words. Yeah the real thing here is that 357 Magnum deer gun. The neo magnum crowd always says the 357 is too ynderpowered for 'tails but I say they are the ones who are wrong. I'll agree it's no ripsnorter but within 100 yds it'll get it done. A 158 or 180 grn at 1600+ fps is nothin' to sneeze at. It's kinda a mini 45-70. Whitetails are generally not known for eating people and a good 357 lever gun can be just what the Dr. ordered.

04-22-2004, 22:16
Ok, Time for a Group Hug!

Whitetails around here are relatively small. A .357 carbine would be fine for them. I personaly use a .44 mag TC Contender Super 14 and my son uses a 16" barreled Winchester 94 Trapper in .44 mag. Both loaded with a 240 gr JSP.

In a .357 mag carbine for deer hunting I'd stay away from the lighter bullets like the 110's and 125's. 158's and 180's would be a good choice.

04-26-2004, 11:15
Like I said earlier, micro-groove barrels tend to dislike lead bullets at high velocity/pressure. If you reload, I'd recommend the Hornady 180 grain HP/XTP over a dose of 2400 and a magnum primer.

Most .357 bullets are designed to work well at handgun velocities nominally 800 to about 1700 feet per second. A heavy charge from a carbine length barrel will exceed these limitations on bullets lighter than about 170 grains.

If you want to shoot 158 grain bullets, use flat point bullets (Hornady FP/XTP) and keep the velocity down to 1700 fps.

Federal makes a heavy .357 for use in rifles called the Power Shok. It's a 180 grain JHP leaving the barrel at around 1550 fps. This pretty much duplicates the load I was talking about at the top of this post.

05-07-2004, 23:22
I was thinking of getting a lever gun and a revolver in .357 mag for deer hunting and as camp gun set.
Is there one of these cartriges listed here that would also be good out of a 4" revolver?

I was thinking of something that I could use either in the lever gun or the revolver. I'm not dead set on .357 (could also go .45LC or .44 mag, etc), but it's seems like a good choice.

Any suggestions?

05-08-2004, 20:54
You'll just have to buy several types and brands and try it out. What shoots like gangbusters in one usu. wont shoot worth a darn in the other. You'll probably wind up like me and have to settle on the best of which will group in the rifle and pretty good in the 6 gun. Even in the old days there was a lot of Kentucky windage with the revolver. You might get lucky though and find one brand to do both.

05-10-2004, 22:05
The best 357 mag rifle load I know is far and away the 170 grain Speer Gold Dot Hunting GDSP soft point.At rifle velocities hollow points are too fragile normally.I handload this bullet but Speer list a factory loading using it.The test barrel was a pistol length but Speer says this bullet is designed for the longer barrels of rifles.Their test rifle is even a Marlin.