Reloading 38 sp with Unique

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by Raven1, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. Raven1

    Raven1 New Member

    Feb 23, 2009
    Western N.Y.
    I'm reloading 38 special with Unique and lead 125gr swc. I looked at a number of books, but I'm am not getting a clear thought on what the load should be. One says 5 grains and another says to start with 3.8. Any suggestions.
  2. 22WRF

    22WRF Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2004
    From the Alliant 125 gr Speer GDHP load data 5.7 gr of Unique=980 fps.
    I think 3.8 a bit puny.
    I would start a 5 and work up
    There is no data for SWC but we are still talking 125 gr

  3. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2009
    SW Fort Worth
    I would agree with 22WRF in the aspect that I think 3.8 gr is a bit on the low side, but here's my take.

    Start at 3.8 as published, what is loading 3-5 test rounds and working up a few tenths going to HURT?? Nothing; So my advice would be to work up from the published data and have some fun working up the load, who know's you may find that somewhere in the 4.5-4.9 range is perfect. When ever I'm "unsure"; I never jump right into the mid-max range on a load. Half the fun is having a great excuse to get to the range for testing.

    Good Luck and Semper Fi !
  4. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

    Jul 28, 2008
    DAV, Deep in the Pineywoods of E. Texas!
    IMHO, one of the reasons for reloading is to save money. The less powder you use, the more you save. The first load listed is the one I use for my WC'ers. The next two loads are for SD in the home only. I don't carry them, use store bought stuff for that. This is a fast burning powder, so there is no muzzle flash.
    .38 spc. 148 gr. DEWC 2.4 grains of AA#2 759fps, or 2.7grs. for 863fps.
    SPR 140 JHP AA No.2 4.4, @ 775fps - No.2 4.9grs. @ 881 - 18,300psi
    HDY 110 XTP AA No.2 5.2grs, @ 996fps - No.2 5.8, @1132fps - 17,800psi
  5. 220combat

    220combat New Member

    Jun 18, 2009
    I registered here just to chime in on this topic. I load 125 JFP in the 38 special with Unique, and I have found the perfect target load for plinking at 5.3 grains. I worked up from 4.2 as a start, they were just too weak. I wouldn't get above 5.5 or so grains with a cast bullet though.
  6. mrkirker

    mrkirker New Member

    Jul 13, 2007
    Of consideration is the length of the barrel and the use intended. I usually load 3.8 in a K-38 6" for target work. Generally, cast bullets will 'lead' at speeds above 1,000 fps; although alloy blend is a factor.
  7. The_Vigilante

    The_Vigilante New Member

    Apr 28, 2008
    El Paso, Texas
    Here are a couple of loads I found for Unique using 125g Oregon Trail lead TC which are just like SWC's:

    Wt. Bullet Powder Manufacturer Powder Charge Velocity (FPS)
    125 Truncated Cone Alliant Unique 4.1g 742fps
    Remarks: starting load; minimum OAL: 1.450

    125 Truncated Cone Alliant Unique 5.7g 1,012fps
    Remarks: maximum load; minimum OAL: 1.450

    (c) 2004
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