Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Welcome to the Leverguns.Com Forum. This is a high-class place so act respectable. We discuss most anything here ... politely.

Moderators: AmBraCol, Hobie

Forum rules
Welcome to the Leverguns.Com General Discussions Forum. This is a high-class place so act respectable. We discuss most anything here other than politics... politely.

Please post political post in the new Politics forum.
Post Reply
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

I haven't posted here in a long time as I stepped back from a presence on the net. However, I've visited from time to time. Today, I noticed a post that caught my attention because it is a restatement of a common internet misstatement. I wrote up something a while back for a friend and thought it might provide some insight into my Subject line above.

Common post positing that 16” barrels were the max you needed for .357 mag.

“From the research I have seen all the powder in the 357 magnum cartridge is burned up in 16 inches of barrel so you do not gain any velocity with the extra 4 inches and in fact lose some velocity from friction the last 4 inches, though miniscule. The main advantage would be the longer sight radius which with open sights adds to accuracy. On both my 16" barreled 357 mag rifles I added receiver peeps which increased the sight radius thus making up for loss from a shorter barrel. If I can find the information on velocity loss in .357 mag barrels I'll post it. In my opinion the 16" is the most efficient length for the 357 magnum.”

While I've seen that position written up a lot over the years, the testing they rely on is that performed by the folks at ‘Ballistics By The Inch' using only commercially produced .357mag ammo. However, that commercial ammo they tested was specifically designed for use in a pistol where the barrel length is usually less than 6” and therefore it is optimized for use in a short barrel.

There is no logical reason to believe that ammo specifically developed for a short barreled firearm would perform better in a longer barrel. So, if the quote above were modified to include the caveat that it only applies to commercial ammo specifically developed for use in pistols, I would have no issue with it. However, as stated, the quote is factually incorrect. No ifs, ands, or buts; as stated it is dead wrong.

If one handloads, there are many powders available that provide velocity increases in 24” barrels over those achieved in both 16” and 20” barrels. I don’t have any data on barrels over 24” but I’ve used both H110 and Lil’Gun in my .357mag leverguns, both a 20” carbine and a 24” rifle. I’ve chronoed them at my range multiple times since 2009 and using either ‘magnum’ pistol powders (H110 or Lil’Gun) the results clearly show that there are significant gains in a 24” barrel over those achieved in a 16" or 20” barrel 100% of the time.

My own chrono testing using my 20" carbine and 24" rifle length 357mag Rossi Model 92s clearly shows that when using full charge weights of slow burning magnum pistol powders (specifically H110 and Lil’Gun), magnum primers, and 158grn bullets, I consistently get higher velocities in my 24" rifle than my 20" carbine. This data is in direct conflict with the quote above which, I think, debunks the fallacy. The specifics that follow I offer as proof of my position that with magnum pistol powders, velocities keep increasing at least through 24” barrel lengths:

Test 1: H110 Powder

Range Conditions:
Range at 6,100ft asl, 84° sunny day, little if any wind

Ammo Tested:
357mag handloads consisting of New Starline Brass, Zero 158grn JSP Bullets, CCI Small Pistol Magnum Primers (CCI 550), 16.7grns H110 Powder (max charge per Hodgdon), with an OAL of 1.570".

Firearms:
2009 Rossi M92 20" Round Barreled Carbine and 2009 Rossi M92 24" Octagon Barreled Rifle

Chrono Testing:
Each firearm was fired 5 rounds in 30 seconds to warm up the barrels then a 10rd string fired in under 2 minutes, a pause of a few minutes to reload and then a second 10rd string fired in under 2 minutes. Both 10rd strings were combined and the average velocity calculated.

Chrono Results:
20" Carbine - Average Velocity = 1,789fps, SD - 17fps, ES - 23fps
24" Rifle - Average Velocity = 1,822fps, SD - 14fps, ES - 19fps

It's true that less than full charge weight loads and loads using fast burning pistol powders show velocity decreases in my 24" rifle vs my 20" carbine. This is to be expected because the lower charges produce less total gas volumes which causes the charge to fail to accelerate the bullet down the full length of the longer barrel.

It's also true that even higher charge weights of magnum pistol powders such as were used when the 357mag was being developed back in the 30s, produce even larger velocity differences between 20" and 24" barrels

Test 2: Lil’Gun Powder

I had long wondered if using Lil’Gun powder would prove less hard on the brass as H110 is notorious for beating up .357mag brass at full charges because it produces a peak pressure of 35.000 psi. Hodgdon’s load data indicates that Lil’Gun produces a peak pressure significantly lower at 25,800 psi with the 158grn bullet. So, I bought a pound of Lil’Gun, and loaded up some test rounds for a Test 2 using the same components save for a change in brass cases to Winchester.

The reason for the brass change was that the lot of Starline brass I used experienced cracking after a single firing. When I approached Starline with the problem, their answer was essentially “tough” so I scrapped all my remaining unloaded Starline brass and replaced it with Winchester. I no longer will use Starline brass.

Range Conditions:
Range at 6,100ft asl, 84° sunny day, little if any wind (same as Test 1)

Ammo Tested:
357mag handloads consisting of New Winchester Brass, Zero 158grn JSP Bullets, CCI Small Pistol Magnum Primers (CCI 550), 18.0grns Lil’Gun Powder (max charge per Hodgdon), with an OAL of 1.570".

Firearms:
2009 Rossi M92 20" Round Barreled Carbine and 2009 Rossi M92 24" Octagon Barreled Rifle

Chrono Testing:
The firearms were allowed to cool and then each firearm was fired 5 rounds in 30 seconds to warm up the barrels then a 10rd string fired in under 2 minutes, a pause of a few minutes to reload and then a second 10rd string fired in under 2 minutes. Both 10rd strings were combined and the average velocity calculated.

Chrono Results:
20" Carbine - Average Velocity = 1,952fps, SD - 14fps, ES - 21fps
24" Rifle - Average Velocity = 2,005fps, SD - 15fps, ES - 18fps

These results were not what I was expecting! Hodgdon’s data shows a 14 fps slower velocity with Lil’Gun vs H110 in their 10” barreled test gun, not an increase of about 10%!

However, the chrono doesn’t lie. Lil’Gun produced a 9% velocity increase over H110 in the 20” Carbine and a 10% velocity increase over H110 in the 24” Rifle. That tells me that the larger charge of Lil’Gun (18.0 grns vs 16.7 grns of H110) performs even better in longer barrels vs H110 as the larger charge produces larger volumes of expanding gasses.

As total gas pressure ‘area under the curve’, not peak pressure, is what accelerates the bullet in the barrel, this result actually makes sense with Lil’Gun’s 8% larger charge weight. Of note, I have changed my .357mag powder over to Lil’Gun exclusively and my brass couldn’t be happier.

Both my Test 1 and Test 2 data above shows velocities higher than those reported in ‘Ballistics By The Inch' data for 18" barrels demonstrating that this slow burning magnum powder does benefit from the longer barrel length.

Finally, I am not the only one reporting that Lil’Gun produces velocities higher than those with H110, nor am I alone in reporting the velocity increases in 20” and 24” barrels. I am confident that this data shows that the quote above, while commonly believed, is simply not the case and merely an internet fable repeated over and over.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Tycer
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 7696
Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2007 10:17 am
Location: Asheville, NC

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Tycer »

Hey! Hope all’s well with you!! Miss your posts and that avatar.
Kind regards,
Tycer
----------------------------------------------------------------
http://www.saf.org - https://peakprosperity.com/ - http://www.guntalk.com
Pisgah
Senior Levergunner
Posts: 1797
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:01 pm
Location: SC

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Pisgah »

One of the many "everybody knows" things that is so wrong I usually don't even bother to comment when I hear it. I've lost count of how many times I have been told that my bullets are already slowing down by the time they reach the end of the 24" barrel of my Rossi M92 .45 Colt. Suuurrre they are....
User avatar
wvfarrier
Senior Levergunner
Posts: 1446
Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:27 am
Location: West (by GOD) Virginia

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by wvfarrier »

I know for a fsct that out of a 24" barrel, a 158 grain 357 mag can reach 2200+fps
A bondservant of our Lord, Christ Jesus
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

wvfarrier wrote: Thu Mar 16, 2023 1:09 pm I know for a fsct that out of a 24" barrel, a 158 grain 357 mag can reach 2200+fps
Wow!

I was surprised when mine hit 2,005fps. However, I do know a gentleman in these parts that I found out still loads to the original 40,000psi .357mag levels and he's said that his 158grn Lil'Gun compacted loads with an OAL of 1.600" are screamers too.

Edit to add:

Buffalo Bore is still advertising their Heavy .357mag Ammo as chronoing at 2,153 fps from an 18.5" Marlin 1894. I wonder what that would do in my 24". . . . .

'https://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l ... tail&p=102'
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Grizz
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 11813
Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 7:15 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Grizz »

THAT is well documented and good info. And far cheaper than cutting the barrel one inch at a time. Thanks.
User avatar
JimT
Shootist
Posts: 5503
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 5:04 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by JimT »

COSteve wrote: Thu Mar 16, 2023 1:37 pm Buffalo Bore is still advertising their Heavy .357mag Ammo as chronoing at 2,153 fps from an 18.5" Marlin 1894. I wonder what that would do in my 24". . . . .
It would slow down. :lol:

Just kidding. Let us know when you chrono them ...
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

JimT wrote: Thu Mar 16, 2023 2:07 pm
COSteve wrote: Thu Mar 16, 2023 1:37 pm Buffalo Bore is still advertising their Heavy .357mag Ammo as chronoing at 2,153 fps from an 18.5" Marlin 1894. I wonder what that would do in my 24". . . . .
It would slow down. :lol:

Just kidding. Let us know when you chrono them ...


Before I did that, I'd try a 'nuclear' level load of Lil'Gun after I found out the max OAL I could cycle my ammo through my Rossis was.

But, I'm not really into going crazy anymore with hot loads. That was for my younger self and since I completed my 3rd lap around 25yrs old last November, I'm a bit more mellow.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
AJMD429
Posting leader...
Posts: 31996
Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2007 10:03 am
Location: Hoosierland
Contact:

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by AJMD429 »

.
Glad to see COSteve back - I always liked your thorough exploration of the potential of 357 Mag in leverguns...!

Agree on the not pushing to 'max' arbitrarily - accuracy generally is far more important, whether target shooting, hunting, or self-defense.

Also agree on the TYPE of ammo being a big factor - I'd suspect that a 180 grain 357 Mag load might take long enough to accelerate at safe pressures that it might benefit from a longer barrel, just intuitively. If you ever test those 'heavy for caliber' loads let us know.

I ordered a 26" 280 Remington bull-barrel with JP muzzle brake for an Encore rifle many years ago, and upon clicking the 'send' button realized I'd ordered a 26" bull-barrel in 9mm Luger..... :shock: I rushed to cancel and re-do the order, but I always wondered what one could do/get from a 9mm Luger with a 26" barrel...I'm guessing the small case capacity (relative to the 357 Mag) would not lend itself to much potential unless some sort of crazy dense but slow-burning powder was used. Until I received the 'cancellation' notice, I thought well, at least if they ship it, I can have it reamed out to 357 Maximum and shoot big ol' soft-lead bullets with gas-checks at subsonic velocities... :D
Doctors for Sensible Gun Laws
"first do no harm" - gun control LAWS lead to far more deaths than 'easy access' ever could.


Want REAL change? . . . . . "Boortz/Nugent in 2012 . . . ! "
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

Thank you Steve, that validates what I've thought for years, but since I seldom load for anything but my cowboy action competition loads, I've never tested anything approaching maximum loads except in my rifle cartridge rifles for hunting loads.
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

As far as increased velocities for the smaller cased, modern calibers out of say a 16.5" barrel, everything I've read says the 150-200fps increases are what to expect even when using powders like Power Pistol which is what I like to use in my 6" custom Glock 10mm I developed back in 2004.

I was rummaging around in my storage area in the basement last fall and I discovered some 6,000 pieces of Speer nickel plated 40s&w brass I'd picked up some 25 yrs ago from our range. Our guards all were issued G-22s and they practiced often so I had access to their brass.

Anyway, I got a wild hair to get an old style Ruger Police Carbine in 40s&w that looks a lot like their 10/22 rather than the new version (not into the 'Tacticool' stuff) so I kept my eye out for one. After a few months I fell into a recently surplussed, 1998 Ruger PC4 Police Carbine originally bought by the Columbia, Tennessee PD that they never issued out and recently found in the back of their safe in the arms room.
Ruger PC4GR.jpg
The 5 'restricted' 11rd mags it came with (made during the 1996-2006 federal ban on over 10rd mags) still had the paper labels on them and upon inspection, I found no sign of any wear from cycling but did find some dried out Ruger shipping grease still in the action. Together, I deduced that I had an Unfired Police Carbine.

Anyway, the things a hoot to plink with but those small, high pressure calibers just die at about 125yds. So, I've settled on 3 different loads I've tested for function; 155grn, 165grn, and 180grn bullets over some Power Pistol powder that are great plinking loads as this is a plinker, not a longer range carbine like my leverguns can be.

I've got some all ready to go out to chrono them to confirm my assumptions but I'm just waiting for some decent weather (it snowed again this morning). Unlike the .357mag loads that produced 300-500fps increases in a longer barrel, as I said above, I expect I'll see about 150-200fps increases in the Ruger over say, my son's G-22.

When the weather warms a bit I'll have my answers and I'll post them.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Scott Tschirhart
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3886
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2020 2:56 pm
Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Scott Tschirhart »

Makes sense to me.
piller
Posting leader...
Posts: 15201
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 9:49 pm
Location: South of Dallas

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by piller »

Years ago, I was told by a gentleman with a Petroleum Engineering degree who loads a bunch of things, that I should use a slower burning powder in my .480 Ruger leveraction carbine. I followed his advice, and accuracy as well as velocity has been more than expected. That seems to be in line with Steve's results. Different caliber, sure. Similarities are still there. The slower powder seems to keep building pressure for a longer time in the barrel. That flattens out the pressure curve. Maybe that is part of the reason for my increased accuracy over factory loads intended for 7.5 inch barreled pistols. With L'Il Gun or H4227, that .480 Ruger with 410 grain LBT style bullets are faster out of that carbine than factory 325 grain bullets are out of my Super Redhawk's 7.5 inch barrel.
D. Brian Casady
Quid Llatine Dictum Sit, Altum Viditur.
Advanced is being able to do the basics while your leg is on fire---Bill Jeans
Don't ever take a fence down until you know why it was put up---Robert Frost
User avatar
wvfarrier
Senior Levergunner
Posts: 1446
Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 9:27 am
Location: West (by GOD) Virginia

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by wvfarrier »

COSteve wrote: Thu Mar 16, 2023 1:37 pm
wvfarrier wrote: Thu Mar 16, 2023 1:09 pm I know for a fsct that out of a 24" barrel, a 158 grain 357 mag can reach 2200+fps
Wow!

I was surprised when mine hit 2,005fps. However, I do know a gentleman in these parts that I found out still loads to the original 40,000psi .357mag levels and he's said that his 158grn Lil'Gun compacted loads with an OAL of 1.600" are screamers too.

Edit to add:

Buffalo Bore is still advertising their Heavy .357mag Ammo as chronoing at 2,153 fps from an 18.5" Marlin 1894. I wonder what that would do in my 24". . . . .

'https://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l ... tail&p=102'
Mine is a 24" barrel. Ive used it for deer, black bear, coyotes, turkey and ground hogs.
A bondservant of our Lord, Christ Jesus
Nath
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 8660
Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2007 1:41 pm
Location: England

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Nath »

Awesome, never doubted it 8)
Thanks.
Psalm ch8.

Because I wish I could!
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

Welcome back. Interesting to know for those who like that xtra barrel length.
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

I guess I'm a bit old fashioned when it comes to my firearm choices as I'm definitely drawn to the classic designs. In leverguns, I can see that the 16" trapper style are really popular now but I've tried them a few times and to me the balance is off with the short barrel.

The last time I fired one at our range, a colleague and I traded our Rossis. He's a younger, tactical type of guy with AR platforms mostly but he did pick up a 16" .357 mag Rossi Trapper (his only levergun) which he used for rapidly shooting between targets between 50 and 100 yds. I was shooting at my standard 200 yds so I let him use my 24" .357 mag Rossi rifle.

We both were using some handloads so I suggested that we swap those also so we could get an accurate idea of how the other person's Rossi shot with what they thought was the right load for it. He had some 125 grn Berry's plated HPs over a medium dose of 8.0 grns of Unique. A nice mid range load. I had 158 grn Zero JSPs over a medium dose of 14.6 grns of Lil'Gun for a bit longer range as I shoot mine mostly out at 200 yds.

He shot mine at 200 yd targets as I was and using the tang and globe sights was impressed at how accurate the rifle was at 200 yds. I used his standard barrel mounted sights at targets from 50 yds to 100 yds as he had. In truth, I had difficulty seeing the front sight as I didn't have any Depth of Field help from my target tang's small aperture, but I carried on and concentrated on rapidly switching from one target range to another as he had been doing.

At the end of our plinking we compared notes and both of us thought that the loads were well thought out for the intended shooting they were for. He was surprised at first at the heft of my Rossi but after a few rounds he said he understood the appeal of the longer barrel at 200 yds as he found the rifle hung on target quite well. I commented that I understood the lack of muzzle weight was an advantage for the close in, fast acquisition type shooting he liked as it was a breeze to switch between aim points.

However, we both agreed that our own Rossi choices were better for the type of shooting we each do. He only has the 16" trapper in .357 mag while I have both a 20" carbine and 24" rifle. I asked if he'd consider a 24" rifle now and he admitted that with my loads and sights, there was a budding interest in him to try his hand at longer ranges. Before we swapped, he would have said, "No way." to a 24" rifle but now he said that in the future he might consider it.

When I told him I also had a 19" Uberti 1866 Yellowboy carbine and 24" Special Sporting Rifle in .45 Colt and that they were also a blast to shoot, I think I hooked another member into the levergun circle as he got a big smile on his face as he said that he'd always wanted to try a .45 Colt.

At the conclusion, I let him try my 20" carbine as a 'happy medium' length and he liked that better than the rifle but still preferred his 16" trapper over both of mine. That's just fine as that comparison test confirmed to me that the 16" trapper length carbine doesn't fit well with my style of shooting but does with his.

We both agreed that the different lengths are suited to different shooting styles and therefore, none of them are better or worse choices, but rather the intended shooting style, range, and the like will lead one to the choice right for them.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

Fine on that idea. I have tried them 16-26” and I just load mainly to factory specs. At that level 16” is about the apex of velocity.
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
User avatar
earlmck
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3424
Joined: Tue Nov 30, 2010 12:10 am
Location: pert-neer middle of Oregon

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by earlmck »

Just for grins I thought I'd see if QuickLoad would show any loads giving a decreased velocity with increasing barrel length. Nope -- even Doc's 9mm Luger loaded with heavy bullets and Bullseye powder is still getting a couple extra fps per inch at the 30" length level according to QL. Same for the 22 long rifle. I'm thinking this just means that QuickLoad's velocity equations are oversimplified, as I'm sure the 22 long rifle starts losing some velocity with increasing barrel length somewhere there before the 30" length.

Oh yeah, Welcome Back Steve! I've missed your thoughtful posts.
The greatest patriot...
is he who heals the most gullies.
Patrick Henry
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

I did much the same for my various 45 Colt rifles... no carbine amongst them, but a couple of short barreled rifles. My results were unsatisfactory... mainly due to the wide SD numbers gained from loading on my Dillon. At the time this testing as done, I'd started noticing that my Dillon was not very stable, the ram moved a lot during it's stroke, often requiring me to reposition the round to be sized/decapped back under the die as it would swing out from under it. I'm sure all that wiggling back and forth affected my powder drops. But... this is akin to bulk loaded ammo and simply dropped into a GI can and picked out as randomly as possible. Being that it's my cowboy and wild bunch ammo, I'm not worried about pinpoint accuracy, just that it goes bang every time. Surprisingly, it's not all that inaccurate at cowboy or wild bunch distances. As seen on the chart, for this particular load, I found the shorter two barrelled guns to have the higher ave. velocity. Also, unlike your test, I wasn't testing for "best" velocity for barrel length, simply a comparison of a load I once liked for my particular shooting hobby. I currently use lighter bullets for both cowboy & wild bunch. Although this 225grain TC is still my goto BP bullet. It has a wide deep grease groove and provides enough SPG that even at the 24" lengths, is still soft enough to provide lubrication at the muzzle.

But... enough, now to the numbers.
SD & Ave FPS.pdf
Notwithstanding my numbers, this doesn't negate or contradict Steve's findings. If nothing, it serves to document that pistol loads do not necessarily perform well in rifle barrels. Even Lyman's 50th Reloading Handbook doesn't provide much data using slower powders, other'n IMR-4227 & AA-5744. The data shown in it and Lyman's 4th Cast Bullet Handbook are given utilizing a 16" Winchester 94AE. (Although the 50th does list a 20" Universal Receiver, but doesn't note which loads were associated with what firearm). Maybe I need to redo my test and see what results I get using AA-5744. (I still have 1-½ 8'lb jugs left, but no 4227). I think for this test I'd use my Wild Bunch 200 grain RFN. What say the peanut gallery? May be awhile as I need to get back to work.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

Griff, if you're having any issues with your Dillon, I'd send it back to them for a rebuild. It's part of the warranty and it will do wonders for your load accuracy. My old 650 had over 225,000 rds on it, many necked rifle calibers, and I sent it back to them to tighten up the platform as it was a bit lose and I couldn't seem to get it aligned with their tool and get the bolts tight. It came back good as new with a new Platform and Mainshaft and it was free.

I currently load 7 pistol and 9 rifle calibers and I've had great luck with accurate loads with the 3 Dillons I've had (RL550B, XL650 with Casefeeder and since 2020, a XL750 as I like the 550's primer approach better than the 650's and that's what they did with the 750).
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

I did about a year & ½ ago, they sent back a 550C. Much improved! And all it cost was the shipping to them. Gotta love their commitment to their warranty! I thought about upgrading to the XL750, but... I have all the toolheads I need for both 550s I load on, I didn't feel like I wanted to make another investment in toolheads, etc. I'll see how loading for this new test goes. The next few days are going to be full of looking to get back to work.
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

I know what you mean. When I went from my 550 to a 650 with Casefeeder, I was lucky because the buyer of my 550 wanted the spare parts kit, my 2nd primer assy (I hate changing out from small to large), my 3 additional Quick Change Kits for the calibers I was doing at that time, and my 3 additional Caliber Conversion Kits, in short, everything that was 550 specific. He wanted more but I kept my dies, strongmount, roller handle, and a lot more I could use on the 650.

I'd had it for 4 years and I priced it discounted off of the current prices so he ended up buying the kit for about $6 more than I bought it for even at the discounted price. That made getting the 650 a snap. When I sold my 650, all I sold was the press set up for .223 without the dies, a spare parts kit, and the 2nd Primer Assy. Everything else I had for the 650 is also used on the 750 so swapping out the press and getting it running took all of about 15 minutes. And again, as I'd had my 650 for 14 years, I sold it for $113 more than I paid for it using the same pricing method I used with my 550.

BTW, I've kept up with Dillon's pricing since 2003 and since I bought my 750 stuff in Jan. 2020, Dillon's prices for all the equipment I have, have gone up almost 29%!!!! For instance, my XL750 was priced at $649.95 which included a specific caliber option. Currently, to get the same press with a specific caliber option it will cost you $739 + $120 for the caliber option; a total of $859!!! That's over a 32% increase!!
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

So... since I seldom load 45 Colt as a performance round, but this thread has me thinkin'... :P While I usually don't load any 45 Colt rounds that can't be shot in my Colt SAA, I do have 6 rifles that can shoot the round. From 3 toggle links, 2- 1873s and an 1860, I have a Rossi Short Rifle, a Marlin 1894 and a Miroku Low Wall. So, I took two bullets of 200 grain weights, and decided to see if the same result applies to the barrel lengths I have.

Marlin 1894, 17"
Uberti 1873, 18-½"
Rossi 1892, 20"
Miruko 1885, 24"
Uberti 1873, 24-¼"

In looking thru several of my many reloading manuals, I found two that listed the slowest powders appropriate to the 45 Colt in a rifle, Lyman's 50th Handbook, and Lyman's 4th Cast Bullet Handbook. The 50th listed loads using 5744 for both 185 grain & 230 grain jacketed bullets. The 4th Cast Handbook, listed Unique as the slowest powder in my inventory for cast bullets. The two bullets I decided on were the old, tried & true "Flying Ashtray", the Speer 200 grain HP. The cast bullet is a Rucker Bullet (local company), 200 grain RFN that matches my Lee 45-200-RF mold. The 50th doesn't list a specific load for a 200 grain jacketed bullet, but lists 20.5 grains of 5744 as max for a 185 grain bullet and 18.5 as max for the 240 jacketed bullet. Lyman lists the same loads as max in the pistol section, but don't list the pressure generated. I decided to try 19 grains as the max for my load. I'll shoot them first in the Marlin, Rossi, & Miruko and see what pressure signs I have before shooting the 1873s. I've loaded the jacketed rounds in new Starline cases and the cast bullets in new Remington cases. Both loaded with Winchester Large Pistol primers. Maybe one of you guys with Quick Load could tell me what to expect as far as pressure?

The cast bullet handbook lists 9.4 as max for the 200 grain bullet, and I decided on loading at 9.2 grains wanting the max performance with a margin for safety. They list 1265 fps out of a Winchester 94AE with a 16" bbl. Under the pistol section they list that same load as producing 1050 fps & 14,000 psi from a 7-½" bbl, so I'm not too anxious about using this load in my toggle link actions.
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
Ray
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 2823
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 2:45 am

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Ray »

mister griff, have you noticed the $ of 5744 has more thanl doubled of late ? I ordered and paid haz. mat. on 4 lbs. of similar shooters world "buffalo" and only paid a few $ more than one lb. of 5744 on a local shelf.

not sure of the wisdom of buying discontinued powders or those of a dubious future availability but in the past four years I bought several pounds of the above mentioned "buffalo" and imr "red" (near reddot) and "target" (near bullseye) as well as vectan a1 (near greendot) and accurate nitro 100 (#2 on steroids). Load data on the nitro 100 is very limited but cautiously extrapolating "bullseye" and #2 data has worked so far.

still looking for 2400 and unique :(
m.A.g.a. !
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

Ray wrote: Sat Mar 18, 2023 4:22 pmmister griff, have you noticed the $ of 5744 has more thanl doubled of late ? I ordered and paid haz. mat. on 4 lbs. of similar shooters world "buffalo" and only paid a few $ more than one lb. of 5744 on a local shelf.
I must admit I haven't. When I drug out my 1 lb "can" I keep to load the measure out of, I looked at my whole inventory and I actually have 3 8 lbs jugs of it! I didn't even look to see if any of them had a price tag on 'em. I have it mainly for my 1886 and Sharps... and recently started using it for the .32-40. When I don't use black.
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
Ray
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 2823
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 2:45 am

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Ray »

That sounds like a lot of 5744 but when you are using 20+ grains at a time the 350 or so loads you are supposed to be able to get from a pound don't quite number that many. You einsteinian physicists and theoretical mathematicians out there 'splain that por favor !
m.A.g.a. !
RIDERED350r
Levergunner 2.0
Posts: 284
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2022 2:33 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by RIDERED350r »

I have three 45 Colt rifles.

Henry Big Boy, 20"
Winchester Miroku 1892 Short Rifle, 20"
Winchester 94 Trapper, 16"

I've worked up all three using Hornady 11th Ruger/TC data. The load consists of the Hornady 250gr XTP pushed by AA#9. I don't see a lot of difference in velocity between the 16" Trapper and the other two 20" rifles, but the Trapper generally runs them a little faster. Not by much, usually <100fps. Across the board they are all running right around 1600fps. I think powder choice is key. Seems my particular load favors the 16" barrel by a slight margin.

****I would not recommend this load in a toggle link rifle as pressures are comparable to that of full house 44mag****.

I use AA5744 in my 45-60WCF and have used it in smokeless development of my 45-90WCF. It's a great powder for making smokeless loads that mimic the old BP loads. It doesn't mind space in the case. Using no fillers I get low ES/SD with my 45-60. I've since moved on to a different powder in my 45-90. But 5744 is one I really like for working with old cartridges that there is almost no load data for other than BP. And yes, it's gotten incredibly expensive over the last couple of years sadly. If I'm not mistaken, it's THE most expensive powder out there.
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

RIDERED350r wrote: Sun Mar 19, 2023 7:44 amI use AA5744 in my 45-60WCF and have used it in smokeless development of my 45-90WCF. It's a great powder for making smokeless loads that mimic the old BP loads. It doesn't mind space in the case. Using no fillers I get low ES/SD with my 45-60. I've since moved on to a different powder in my 45-90. But 5744 is one I really like for working with old cartridges that there is almost no load data for other than BP. And yes, it's gotten incredibly expensive over the last couple of years sadly. If I'm not mistaken, it's THE most expensive powder out there.
Back in 1986, one of the guys I met at EOT and shooting against was Mike Venturino, who I found out later was tasked by my wife to determine my dream rifle. Since I wanted one more for the hunt and not competition, I went with the .40-90SBN, and since it was for hunting, a grease groove bullet. When it's not loaded with BP, Mike recommended 5744, which is the only smokeless powder I've used in it, and the reason I have so much. At one time I had on old email from Accurate detailing load data for my four most used cartridges. .45 colt, .30-30, 45 ACP & 12 gauge. They really didn't recommend it for the shotgun... but... to humor me I guess... That was several computers back, and has long disappeared into the ether! It will also see a lot of use in my .32-40 Highwall. Anyway, I've got my ammo loaded for my test and just need a slightly warmer day to run out to the range. Maybe it will happen before I get back to work, maybe not! :P
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

Griff, just a data point for you.

I have 2 Uberti long guns in .45 Colt; a 19" 1866 Yellowboy Carbine and a 24" 1873 Special Sporting Rifle and I use Unique in them as the toggle link actions restrict me to a standard .45 Colt load of 14,000 psi. I chrono'd 2 loads back in August of 2018, a 255 grn X-Treme plated bullet and an Elmer Keith Style 255 grn lead bullet, both with 9.1 grns of Unique.

Again, my range is at 6,100ft asl, and the weather was sunny and a warm 87°. My procedure was the same as with my .357 mag loads and my results were:

Chrono Results:
19" Carbine:
255 Grn Plated Average Velocity = 1,163fps, SD - 15fps, ES - 19fps
255 Grn Lead Average Velocity = 1,159fps, SD - 13fps, ES - 21fps

24" Rifle:
255 Grn Plated Average Velocity = 1,209fps, SD - 16fps, ES - 18fps
255 Grn Lead Average Velocity = 1,181fps, SD - 15fps, ES - 19fps

As you can see, even with a more traditional pistol powder, both the plated and lead velocities were higher in the 24" rifle vs the 19" carbine. Not that much more for an extra 5" of barrel as I suspect that the velocities had peaked and were dropping slightly in the rifle but they were still 4% higher with the plated and 2% higher with the lead. Further, as part of my next chrono outing I have planned when the weather warms is to test some 200 grn Berry's plated bullets over 9.5 grns of Unique in both my Ubertis to see how they fair as I have a bunch of them and they seem to shoot well out at 200 yds where I like to shoot.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

Thank you Steve, I'd have liked to use the same powder, but... I didn't find any data for 5744 with a lead bullet. I just ordered the QuickLoad program, so when it arrives and I've played with it a bit, I might get a little more "experimental"!
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
Ray
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 2823
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 2:45 am

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Ray »

Griff wrote: Mon Mar 20, 2023 11:50 am Thank you Steve, I'd have liked to use the same powder, but... I didn't find any data for 5744 with a lead bullet. I just ordered the QuickLoad program, so when it arrives and I've played with it a bit, I might get a little more "experimental"!
IMG_20230320_193011421~2.jpg
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
m.A.g.a. !
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

Ray wrote: Mon Mar 20, 2023 7:40 pm
Griff wrote: Mon Mar 20, 2023 11:50 amThank you Steve, I'd have liked to use the same powder, but... I didn't find any data for 5744 with a lead bullet. I just ordered the QuickLoad program, so when it arrives and I've played with it a bit, I might get a little more "experimental"!
IMG_20230320_193011421~2.jpg
Ok, I shoulda said "with a 200 grain bullet." Like I said, when I get my copy of Quick Load I'll get a little more experi"mental"! :D :D
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
CowboyTutt
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3712
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Mission Viejo, CA

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by CowboyTutt »

Griff, glad to see you join the QL family, you will not regret it, especially with some of the more esoteric cartridges that you load for.

I am very glad that COSteve is back, and it goes without saying that longer barrels make more velocity, but the difference with the slower burning pistol powders like H110/Win 296 or Lil' Gun (which frequently performs better) is pretty minimal,
and I think we need to acknowledge that.

It was over a decade ago but I also did testing with 454 Casull loads through my best friends 16 inch Rossi Puma and my 20 inch version with my handloads with Lil' Gun. The difference in velocity was only about 50 fps, for 4 inches more of barrel length. Pretty much the same as what COSteve also witnessed using the same powders in a different cartridge.

Much ado about nothing if you ask me

Choose the rifle that balances best for you, has the best sight radius with your sights, and works the best for you in your intended purpose.

When using the slower burning powders like H110 or Lil' Gun, the difference in velocity by barrel length is not worth sweating over.

-Tutt
"It ain't dead! As long as there's ONE COWBOY taking care of ONE COW, it ain't dead!!!" (the Cowboy Way)
-Monte Walsh (Selleck version)

"These battered wings still kick up dust." -Peter Gabriel
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

Better becareful Tutt or before you know it you will be shooting normal guns with normal loads, SAAMI stuff ;-)
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
User avatar
CowboyTutt
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3712
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Mission Viejo, CA

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by CowboyTutt »

While we are on the subject, if you are not going to shoot my original "45 Colt 360 grain Super" loads, please give them back to me Old Friend.

Or at least to capture the bullets which were custom. I will put it towards your pizza bill. and likely forgive that as well.

Miss you, stay healthy and alive.....

Your Andrew

P.S. Anytime you want to shoot beyond 300 yards, I will pay your shooting fees at Angeles.

Give lovely Pat my regards.

-A-
"It ain't dead! As long as there's ONE COWBOY taking care of ONE COW, it ain't dead!!!" (the Cowboy Way)
-Monte Walsh (Selleck version)

"These battered wings still kick up dust." -Peter Gabriel
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

Haven’t had a six pack of beer since the last pizza night. 300 is my max. Would have brought the 360s last time had I remembered.
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
User avatar
CowboyTutt
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3712
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Mission Viejo, CA

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by CowboyTutt »

Humbly, I don't think you had even a six pack, we were sharing a pitcher. 300 grains is my minimum in 454 Casull, and often 45 "Long" Colt as well. Do me a favor, and just stay well for now, will see you soon enough. -A-
"It ain't dead! As long as there's ONE COWBOY taking care of ONE COW, it ain't dead!!!" (the Cowboy Way)
-Monte Walsh (Selleck version)

"These battered wings still kick up dust." -Peter Gabriel
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

Cataract surgery exam today, may revive my shooting interest.
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

Old Savage wrote: Tue Mar 21, 2023 7:30 amCataract surgery exam today, may revive my shooting interest.
I wish you the very best with that.
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

Thanks Griff, both eyes at once is the plan,
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

CowboyTutt wrote: Mon Mar 20, 2023 11:07 pm Much ado about nothing if you ask me

Choose the rifle that balances best for you, has the best sight radius with your sights, and works the best for you in your intended purpose.

When using the slower burning powders like H110 or Lil' Gun, the difference in velocity by barrel length is not worth sweating over.

-Tutt
I think you missed the point of my post.

My point was to debunk the notion that the maximum useful barrel length for a .357mag round is 16". My testing (and yours as well) shows that with the proper powder, the bullet keeps accelerating in barrels as long as 24" and so the notion of any length longer than 16" is actually slowing the bullet's velocity is false.

That was and is the point to my post.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

And it is a good point. Well demonstrated that with more barrel length you can get improved ballistics.

If on the other hand you stick to factory duplicated in loading 16” is close to optimum.

Like the ballistics, like the rifle form, either way .., there are some options available.
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
piller
Posting leader...
Posts: 15201
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 9:49 pm
Location: South of Dallas

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by piller »

Not comparing 16 inch to 20 or 24 inch barrels on my part. I was comparing a 7.5 inch revolver to a 20 inch rifle. Quite a difference there.
D. Brian Casady
Quid Llatine Dictum Sit, Altum Viditur.
Advanced is being able to do the basics while your leg is on fire---Bill Jeans
Don't ever take a fence down until you know why it was put up---Robert Frost
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

The one unassailable advantage of the longer barrel lengths is sight radius. At my age and eyesight, I look for every advantage I can get using iron sights and for me that means a peep rear sight as close to my eye as I can get it to increase the benefit of Depth of Field.

So, my 24" Rossi Rifle has a wonderful 30" sight radius with a tang rear and globe front. That's a full 9" longer than the barrel mounted semi-buckhorn rear and the peep is close to my eye so the .042" target aperture gives me a clear front sight and target at any range.

My 20" Rossi Carbine has Steve's rear bolt mounted peep sight which gives me a 22" sight radius; 6" longer than the stock barrel mounted sight and again, a peep sight on top to increase my sighting accuracy.

I've got peep rear sights on everything I can put them on. The sole exception is my 1866 Uberti Yellowboy Carbine as it has a flip rear barrel mounted sight.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
Griff
Posting leader...
Posts: 20817
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2007 4:56 pm
Location: OH MY GAWD they installed a STOP light!!!

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Griff »

Well I went off the range today with 100 rounds of ammo of two different types, all 45 Colt, all 200 grain bullets. I'd like to say that my results were definitive, but... I don't have that level of confidence in the ammo. It seemed all over the place. I took 5 45 Colt rifles. They were, a 1894 Marlin with a cut down Cowboy barrel to 17", Uberti 1873 with a 18-½" bbl, a 1892 Rossi with a 20" barrel, a 24" Miroku 1885, and lastly a 24-¼" Uberti 1873. The two loads were a 200 gr. lead RFN in front of 9.2 grains of Unique and a 200 gr jacketed HP in front of 19 grs. of AA5744. The AA 5744 left unburned grains of powder in the cases and barrel. I did note a trend across all rifles and loads, and that was that, generally speaking, my fastest loads were at or near the beginning of each string of 10 shots. Only in the Rossi was the fastest load fired near the end (7th round) I didn't just top off the mag tube and fire away all ten shots. I actually singly load each round and note the fps. I ended up with SD numbers from a 7.4 in one string of fire to 42 in another. Not reassuring at all. The Sporting Rifle also clocked the slowest round in the test, while the Rossi clocked the fastest. With lead bullets the 20" Rossi also clocked the fastest average, while the 18-½" Comanchero clocked the slowest. Similar to my test of my old cowboy ammo, (6 grs. of RedDot behind a 225 TC bullet), the little Marlin was faster than the barrel length would indicate. Whereas, the 24-¼" barrel in the Uberti Sporting Rifle was lowest with the lead bullet, it wasn't with the jacketed HP. I haven't done a detailed study of the fired brass, but intend to, as both Uberti rifles used in this test were slowest than their closest counterpart. And I sorted noted that with the first few rounds the cases were expanded on one side more than the other, indicating that the SAAMI spec chambers and full length sized brass, while making for easy feeding, are not quite up "match" standards. With only 3 inches separating the 3 shortest rifles, (1-½ inch between each), the differences there were minimal. The jump to the 24" Miroku was the most significant, but it was only fastest with the jacketed bullets. But, after the 2-½ hours I conducted the test, my shoulder is none the worse for wear, although all five rifles have crescent buttplates These were in all honetly all pistol type loads that could all go thru a Colt SAA. I need to experiment with some powders and loads that will test the capacity of the 45 Colt... More along the lines of .44Magnum level loads, or the Ruger/Contender type loads found in several of my reloading manuals.
45 Colt Barrel Length Test Summary.pdf
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Griff,
SASS/CMSA #93
NRA Patron
GUSA #93

There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
No I ain't ready, but let's do it anyway!
User avatar
Old Savage
Posting leader...
Posts: 16702
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 3:43 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by Old Savage »

Well Griff, no surprise, I found similar results testing 45-70s from 18”-28”. But if you have a particular rifle you like or want to use you can likely find a load/loads that make it shine. I am sure we all can cite examples,
In the High Desert of Southern Calif. ..."on the cutting edge of going back in time"...

Image
User avatar
CowboyTutt
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3712
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Mission Viejo, CA

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by CowboyTutt »

Steve and others, not debating the "longer barrel is better" evidence regarding velocity. I never commented on it, because I had already seen that it doesn't. No myth to dispel on my part. I would agree that the longer barrels do help velocity with the slower burning powders in 357 Mag, 45 Colt +P and 454 Casull (all the same powders). Not so sure how much with fast burning powders as the velocity gain is going to be much less but as some have reported, is still more. '

I am in no way disputing what COSteve had to say although I am worried by the editing of my original post by him to mislead others, so I'm posting it all here so he does not mislead anyone here by misrepresenting my original post:

I am very glad that COSteve is back, and it goes without saying that longer barrels make more velocity, but the difference with the slower burning pistol powders like H110/Win 296 or Lil' Gun (which frequently performs better) is pretty minimal,
and I think we need to acknowledge that.

It was over a decade ago but I also did testing with 454 Casull loads through my best friends 16 inch Rossi Puma and my 20 inch version with my handloads with Lil' Gun. The difference in velocity was only about 50 fps, for 4 inches more of barrel length. Pretty much the same as what COSteve also witnessed using the same powders in a different cartridge.

Much ado about nothing if you ask me

Choose the rifle that balances best for you, has the best sight radius with your sights, and works the best for you in your intended purpose.

When using the slower burning powders like H110 or Lil' Gun, the difference in velocity by barrel length is not worth sweating over.

-Tutt
My point was that maybe the difference in velocity is negligible, and while absolutely correct that "more barrel is better" for velocities sake, that their are also drawbacks to a longer, heavier rifle and other factors should also be considered, such as rifle weight, ease of carry and how well the rifle balances in your hands. I think that a velocity gain of 50 fps for 4 inches of barrel length may not be worth it in of itself. So then the OP mentioned "sight radius", which I had already mentioned (see above). OK, I can see the argument for that. No problem! I mentioned it myself! This goes back to what I originally posted, pick the rifle that works and shoots the best for you.

COSteve very accurately proved his point that a 16 inch barrel is not necessarily optimum for the 357 Magnum, and he did so with good evidence, and grateful he did.

I'm just stating that there is more to it than just velocity as that difference is minimal, and maybe consider other factors, including all the things I mentioned here in this post and COSteve in his posts and rightfully pointed out.

COSteve, please be careful to not edit my posts to misrepresent me as I think you did. I don't appreciate it (at all) and felt compelled to correct the record of what I said on this thread.

-Tutt
"It ain't dead! As long as there's ONE COWBOY taking care of ONE COW, it ain't dead!!!" (the Cowboy Way)
-Monte Walsh (Selleck version)

"These battered wings still kick up dust." -Peter Gabriel
User avatar
COSteve
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3862
Joined: Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:03 pm

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by COSteve »

Cowboy Tutt.

I didn't intend to imply any nefarious motives or other positions when I took part of your quote, quoted it exactly, and responded to it. I wasn't trying to change the impact of your post but rather took the part I was responding to and quoted that exactly in the hopes of clarity in my response.

It's my position that the increased velocities and the increased sight radius of longer barrels combine to make for a more accurate piece and safer shoot.

When you couple that with a peep rear sight close to your eye, the DoF advantage is significant and makes for a more precise and safer shot as you can clearly see what your target and the area behind it is.

I'm sorry you took offense to me zeroing in on the specific part of your post that I was responding to but again, it wasn't my intention to modify the intent of your words but rather to quote them accurately.
Steve
Retired and Living the Good Life
No Matter Where You Go, There You Are
User avatar
CowboyTutt
Advanced Levergunner
Posts: 3712
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 8:27 pm
Location: Mission Viejo, CA

Re: Myth of the .357 Mag Not Benefiting from a Barrel Longer Than 16”

Post by CowboyTutt »

I appreciate that, thank you Steve. Your post was excellent as I said. -Tutt
"It ain't dead! As long as there's ONE COWBOY taking care of ONE COW, it ain't dead!!!" (the Cowboy Way)
-Monte Walsh (Selleck version)

"These battered wings still kick up dust." -Peter Gabriel
Post Reply