200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Beowulf
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200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby Beowulf » Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:01 pm

As one new to casting, I am happy to learn from you guys ... Any suggestions/opinions you’d offer would be greatly appreciated …

I’m looking to design a new .38/.357 mold using the following specs:

Weight: 200 gr.
Alloy: WW
Design: Tan O
Nose/Front Band Diameter: .359/.359
Crimp: .045
Front Band Length: .070
Body Bands: 3 at .0632
Nose Length: .300
Meplat: 80% (.28)
Base: Plain, w/ equal band lengths
OAL: .777
SD: 222

(Hopefully, you are able to view the attached rendering ...)

I plan to use this hunting bullet in my SP101 (3 inch), GP 100 (4 inch), and my H&R Handi Rifle (18 inch), all of which share similar twists (1:18+). I hope to use the bullet at varying distances (7-100 yrds), with reasonable accuracy (baseball/softball-sized groups), at a milder range of Special/Mag velocities (800fps-1500fps), in magnum brass. From what I can gather, the design seems straight-forward enough: a broad-nosed, deeply-seated, heavy weight-for-caliber bullet with plenty of lube grooves, OAL for stability, and TAN O for all-around alignment/accuracy, theoretically suited for a wide variety of settings/applications (Note: I understand casting molds can excel at casting for single firearms--while there is certainly a time/place/justification for more specialized molds, I'm not setting out to design a one-gun-mold) ...

Quandaries:

To the best of your knowledge, do these dimensions best serve my desired outcome?

OR, could these dimensions be improved (and if so, what exactly would you recommend)?

As .38/.357 shooters, do you find the bullet's qualities desirable?

Am I just asking too much of one bullet/mold?--Is this omnibus a camel?

Thank you for taking the time,

Beowulf

P.S. Sorry—I couldn't get my screen shots to work.

B
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mtngun
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby mtngun » Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:59 pm

Your design looks quite reasonable, my only question/suggestion is will you be using this for hunting ? If this is for hunting or other serious purposesl, then your 80% meplat is the right choice.

If the bullet is strictly for plinking, you might want to go with a smaller meplat for better stability, though the 200 grainer may be long enough to stabilize just fine even with an 80% meplat.

There's a fairly well known "Beowolf" who posts on economic and financial blogs. Any relation ? 8-)

Beowulf
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby Beowulf » Mon Dec 05, 2011 12:55 pm

No sir, no relation, though he and I certainly share a number of Anglo Saxon sensibilities ...

Thanks again for sharing your opinion of the mold--yes, this bullet is primarily intended for hunting/serious purposes, plinking only insofar as time and good practice allows, though I too suspect its greater weight/OAL may prove it a reasonable plinker ...

For what it's worth, I've enjoyed reading about your own .357 adventures--if I follow correctly, your last chronicle dates back a few years ... "Had we but world enough, and time ..."

Question: If I may, have your .357 preferences changed any? From what I can tell, you still favor a TC, short nose (75-80% meplat), plain base, deep seating, and lots of grease, weighing in somewhere around 160 grains, moving around 1250fps (snub) ... When it comes to carbines, I seem to recall you pushing 180/190 grains around 1700fps, with similar mold dimensions ...

Question: You once mentioned that your 160 grainers did not suit the carbine--have you ever thought about trying to develop a load that would suit snub and carbine alike? Yes, I've tipped my hand, but I'd be willing to hear you out ...

Man must do as man must--Beowulf

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mtngun
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby mtngun » Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:40 pm

Beowulf wrote:Question: If I may, have your .357 preferences changed any? From what I can tell, you still favor a TC, short nose (75-80% meplat), plain base, deep seating, and lots of grease, weighing in somewhere around 160 grains, moving around 1250fps (snub) ... When it comes to carbines, I seem to recall you pushing 180/190 grains around 1700fps, with similar mold dimensions ...

The stubby 160 does everything I need a revolver load to do.

No doubt a 180 would be more accurate in the wheelgun, while sacrificing little to nothing in the way of velocity, but I didn't want to deal with the added recoil, so I never went there.

Question: You once mentioned that your 160 grainers did not suit the carbine--have you ever thought about trying to develop a load that would suit snub and carbine alike?
I don't remember the group size, but the 160's were pretty lousy in the carbine at 100 yards, though adequate for plinking at 50 yards.

I've never tried the 190 gr. load in the revolver, but imagine it would shoot fine. I just don't want to deal with the recoil, plus my revolver has fixed sights which have been regulated for the 160 gr. load.

5shooter
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby 5shooter » Wed Dec 07, 2011 5:01 pm

Dan built a similar mold for me a couple of years ago. 200 gr. 80% meplat and gas check. It shot great in my Blackhawk 357 to 100 yards, but at longer ranges groups went to hell and the bullets started keyholing. Max loads with H110 and higher velocity gave good groups at 125 to 150 yards, but started keyholing at 200 yards. What doesn't make sense to me is my Rossi 92 in 357 Mag with a slow twist shoots them great. I had Dan cut a similar GC mold in 180 grains and my Blackhawk and Rossi both love them. I only use the 200 grain bullet in my 336 Marlin in 35 Rem.

With my very limited knowledge and testing for a 357 Mag revolver I would recommend a 180 grainer.

Beowulf
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby Beowulf » Fri Dec 09, 2011 7:29 pm

mtngun, been thinking--you got me wondering about the recoil--still thinking, wondering how helpful all those recoil calculators really are ... You also make a good point about POI--part of my delimma is that 158 gr loads print aprox. 5 inches low in my SP101 (new, front night sight ...) ... Of course I could file it down a tad, but I'm set on slinging more lead anyhow, to better suit the carbine ... I want/need to go heavier for the carbine, but am also thinking I'll need to keep the bullet as light as possible, for snub's sake (the wife will also be shooting the wheelgun) ... After looking back through your 1894 post, I found your 180 grain groups ranging from 2.5-4 inches at 100 yards ... Am beginning to think those numbers don't sound so bad ... Question: In your opinion, how fast would one need to push a 180 grainer to maintain stability at 100 yrds (w/ a 1:18.75 twist)?

5shooter, thanks for sharing--I'd like to know more about your 180 grainers--questions:
-What were the dimensions for the mold?
-What kinds of groups are you getting?
-What kinds of loads are you using?

I'm learning--thanks for the help guys.

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mtngun
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby mtngun » Sat Dec 10, 2011 7:57 am

In your opinion, how fast would one need to push a 180 grainer to maintain stability at 100 yrds

There is no formula to predict stability with short blunt bullets. At least, not in the civilian world. I'm pretty sure the military has software that can figure that out.

5shooter
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby 5shooter » Sun Dec 11, 2011 11:15 am

Beowolf,

My 200 and 180 grain bullets are .360 Dia. with 80% meplats and .100" long front bands. The 180 grainer has a .28" long nose and the 200 grainer a .34" long nose. They both have almost identical seating depths in the case. They both will shoot less than 2 moa at 100 yards with a scope through my blackhawks. It is past 100 yards that I start having trouble with the 200 grainer in the Blackhawks. I will not recommend or share my loads. They are way over max and could be very dangerous. I use a hell of a bunch of H110. I use these for hunting and long rang sihoulette so they need to be accurate at over 200 yards. In my testing high pressure loads shoot better than lower pressure loads. The 180's are about 150 FPS faster than the 200 grainers.

I recently was talking to a very reputable and popular gun writer that has shot my Blackhawks. He told me his favorite and very accurate plinking load was a 200 grainer seated deep in 38 special with Unique or 2400 at 700 to 900 fps. I have not tried this but it sounds interesting.

Mountain Molds has done a great job with the design program. It seems that the default weights and designs that initially come up are very close to what I end up ordering and I have had great results with all the molds they have built for me. I have about 10 Mountain Molds in various calibers. They also do a great job of explaining how to measure throats and chambers and how to fit bullets for them. It gets a little tougher trying to design one bullet to fit and perform in several different chambers, but that is part of the fun.

5shooter
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby 5shooter » Sun Dec 11, 2011 11:42 am

Correction on the group size. I have shot many groups less than 2 MOA with both bullets. They will consistantly shoot less than 4 moa with a scope under perfect conditions if I do my part.

Beowulf
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Re: 200 gr. 38/357--Omnibus or Camel?

Postby Beowulf » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:09 am

Now that Christmas is paid for, I’ve decided to place an order for dear ol Dad:

• std brass 2 cav stud_locknut, TAN 180 gr WW, 0.359 min, 0.357 min x 0.090 fb
• Item # 0.290 nL, 78% meplat, 045_crimp,
• .08 PBF, 1.1 GtoB, 45 groove: , 3 bands 0.07 long, 0.699 OAL, 0.06515 ci:

5shooter: I’d be all smiles like those ... I've decided to go with the 180gr, thanks to your advice … I appreciate the word of caution--my regular loads will be mild, with mid-range powders, but I also intend on developing a good barn-burner at some point …

Mtngun: Time will tell, but I think the 78% melplat will prove stable enough; all things considered, I tried to make the bullet as long as possible for its given weight, to help w/ stability … Thanks again for the help. If you see any problems with my dimensions, please let me know.

Merry Christmas,

Beowulf


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