38 special reload help

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by 2muchfreetime, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. 2muchfreetime

    2muchfreetime New Member

    Apr 17, 2012
    I am new to reloading and ready to make 38 special.i got berry 125 grain flat point double struckcopper plated bullets.I am using accurate 2 powder.I looked in many manuals.Can someone reccommend a starting point for this powder.The case seems so large that there will be alot of empty space is this normal.I will be using them for target practice in my Smith 357 magmun 6inch barrel.
  2. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    NW Florida
    I just checked all my Accurate manuals, and they all agree. They do not recommend using #2 with a lead bullet that light (yes, I know Berry's bullets are not "lead", but they recommend you use "lead bullet data" when loading them). They do have a load for a 125 JHP, but the the velocity is a little high for best results with a plated bullet.

    I suggest you either go with a heavier bullet (there are loads out there for 158 grain) or a bulkier powder (there are loads for #5).

  3. Hammerslagger

    Hammerslagger New Member

    Jul 30, 2009
    Do not let the extra case apace fool you. The .38 special was originally a "Black Powder" cartridge. The .357 Magnum was developed by making the .38 special case 0.135" (1/8"+) longer. This lengthening was done primarily to prevent ammo that produced 4X as much pressure from being shot in lightly constructed revolvers.

    Based on what you wrote, you can likely use any maximum reloading manual recommended .38 Special load for your powder and bullet in a .357 Magnum revolver. However, one warning, do not use .357 load data (that is not also recommended for the .38 Special) in a .38 special case. The .38 Special has less case volume, and will produce higher pressure for the same powder, powder weight, bullet, and bullet seating depth than the same load in a .357 Magnum case.
  4. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

    Jul 28, 2008
    DAV, Deep in the Pineywoods of E. Texas!
    No.2 125 HDY XTP, starting load 4.8grs, @ 871fps, Max load 5.3grs., @ 990fps 16,780 psi.

    I know that you are using plated bullets, but the speed you will be shooting them at is not going to cause a leading problem. The presures are for .38, and you will be shooting them in a .357, so you will be OK.
  5. mikld

    mikld Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2009
    FWIW; normally I find a usable load from my reloading manuals before I buy components. If there ain't any loads listed for a specific powder/bullet combo., it may be for a reason; the powder/bullet manufacturer doesn't think the combination you want to use is appropiate/usable/safe.
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2012
  6. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2007
    Athens, Georgia
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