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Thread: Duplicating Win/Rem/Fed “FBI” Loads using Unique in snub noses

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Duplicating Win/Rem/Fed “FBI” Loads using Unique in snub noses

    ...what charge would you recommend with Unique to duplicate Win/Rem/Fed “FBI” loads in 1 7/8 S&W snub noses?

    4.7 grs? 5.2 grs (Max)?

  2. #2
    Boolit Buddy AllanD's Avatar
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    I might go as far as 5.4 unique if it is steel framed and not an "Airweight"

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy
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    It’s S&W 642 +P rated.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    IMO, the closest you might get to the velocity of those type loads is gonna be,"maybe", 800fps in that short of a bbl. using the Max load of Unique +P load of 5.2gr. More than likely it will be in the upper 700+ FPS.

    Their listing using a 6" bbl. is 919fps.

    38 Special +P * 158 gr Speer LSWC* Speer case* 1.44"OAL* 6" bbl.* CCI 500primer* Unique* 5.2gr.-MAX* 919fps
    Source:http://www.alliantpowder.com/reloade...3&cartridge=27

    You are more likely to get there with that snubbie bbl. with Power Pistol powder. Their stated velocity for that load in a 6" bbl. is 1037fps, so you could more likely get into the upper 800+fps with that snubbie using that powder. Not saying for sure, although I guess I could load some up of both & test in one of my snubbies, but it is "your" goal & I just have not gotten around to it myself yet.

    Here is the data from the Alliant site for PP & the source below if ya want to go look yourself.

    38 Special +P* 158 gr Speer LSWC* Speer case* 1.44"OAL* 6" bbl. CCI 500primer* Power Pistol* 6.0gr.-MAX* 1,037fps
    Source:http://www.alliantpowder.com/reloade...8&cartridge=27

    I am just making a guess that you are going to loose about 30-40fps for each inch subtracted from the 6" bbl. down to your close to 2" bbl. That is just a guess & I have no data right now to back it up until I go try it out in one of my own snubbies. Maybe someone else will come in & give ya first hand info, but I was just trying to help out a bit.


    G'Luck!
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  5. #5
    Boolit Grand Master
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    5.2 grains of Unique will get you to the +P level with a 158 gr LSWCHP. As for what actual velocity that will deliver out of a 2" barrel (1 7/8" barrel), you'll get what you get. I chronographed those factory loads out of S&W 1 7/8" J-frame years ago and they were all right around 800 fps from that short barrel.

    I'm not sure if 5.2 grains of Unique will duplicate the factory loadings but that's probably as close as you can get.

    The beauty of the old "FBI Load" is that it works well out of a short barrel despite the loss of velocity when fired from a short barrel.

    Of the three manufacturers mentioned by the OP (Remington, Winchester, Federal) the Remington loads were known to have the softest lead alloy bullet.

    Remington offers that load as the RTP38S12 which replaced the old R38S12 designation. They market that under their "HTP" [High Terminal Performance" label but it is still a soft lead semi-wadcutter 158 gr hollowpoint pushed to +P levels, which is basically all the FBI load really is.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    You're going to need to use a different, as in slower burn rate, powder in order to get to FBI Load velocities. 7.0gr of HS-6 with a magnum primer is as good as it gets.

    Don
    NRA Certified Metallic Cartridge Reloading Instructor

  7. #7
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Also be aware of the effect of barrel-cylinder gap! With standard-pressure, lead bullet .38 Special You can expect a Delta-V of 10 fps or more for each 0.001" change in cylinder gap from Mean Assembly Tolerance. With +P ammunition the difference can be greater, depending upon whether a lead or jacketed bullet is used, due to differences in bore drag, and how efficiently [or not] that slower powders may burn in a short barrel. A 2" gun at the minimum build spec. of pass 0.002"/hold 0.003" will likely produce higher velocity than a 4" gun at the max. police in-service spec of 0.008" pass/0.009" hold.

    .38 Special chronograph data, S&W Model 15, 4” REVOLVER, 0.005” cylinder gap 6-22-93.


    Federal 125 Nyclad HP 852 fps, 25 Sd
    Remington 148 HBWC 747 fps, 6 Sd
    Winchester 148 HBWC 742 fps, 13 Sd
    WCC87 Ball M41 130-gr. FMJ 748 fps, 21 Sd
    Winchester Q4070 110-grain JHP +P+ LE 1062 fps, 39 Sd
    Winchester X38SPD 158-gr. LHP +P 920 fps 21 Sd
    Winchester Q4196 158-gr. LRN 793 fps, 10 Sd
    Federal HydaShok 147-gr. JHP +P+LE 965 fps, 33 Sd

    .38 Special chronograph data, Colt Detective Special 2” REVOLVER, 0.005” cylinder gap 6-22-93


    Federal 125-gr. Nyclad SWCHP 772 fps, 33 Sd
    Remington 148-gr. HBWC 702 fps, 12 Sd
    Winchester 148-gr. HBWC 697 fps, 18 Sd
    WCC87 Ball M41 130-gr. FMJ 718 fps, 31 Sd
    Winchester X38SPD 158-gr. LHP +P 831 fps, 10 Sd
    Winchester Q4196 158-gr. LRN 728 fps, 24 Sd
    Federal HydraShok 147-gr. JHP+P+ LE 920 fps, 6 Sd
    Last edited by Outpost75; 04-15-2019 at 11:41 AM.
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  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by USSR View Post
    You're going to need to use a different, as in slower burn rate, powder in order to get to FBI Load velocities. 7.0gr of HS-6 with a magnum primer is as good as it gets.

    Don
    Just so ya know... 7 gr. HS-6 will exceed Hodgdons "current" recommended MAX for a 38 Sp. +P of 6.6 gr..

    The below info is from Hodgdons reloading data sourced at:http://www.hodgdonreloading.com/data/pistol


    Case: Winchester
    Twist: 1:18.75"
    Primer: Winchester SP, Small Pistol
    Barrel Length: 7.7"
    Trim Length: 1.145"
    Bullet Weight =158 GR. HDY XTP

    Hodgdon HS-6powder .357"bullet diam. 1.455"OAL 6.6gr.-MAX 926fps 18,700 CUP
    Note that the bbl length is 7.7", and the FPS is at 926fps. Accounting for loss of velocity due to reduced bbl. length ( and cylinder gap) one would not expect that load to reach over 800fps in a sub-2" snubnose revolver.
    --------------------------------

    OP/Hi-Speed,

    I do not have the time to go & research loads for you today. I offered some & others are offering some as well. I am going to suggest that you go to some of the websites I have provided, as well as some at the link below & do a little exploring to find load data that fits what you can find. The 158 gr. LSWCHP "FBI Load" boolit going at what , IIRC, is about 880fps, or at least over 800+fps in also, IIRC, a 4" bbl. & not a snubnose.

    Here is a link from right here at CB.GL forum that has a lot of Free load data from manuals, etc:
    castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?337910-CB-load-data-online-sources

    You could also do a bit of searching here on the forum by searching in a search engine with the keywords/search terms I will put below:

    FBI 58gr. LSWCHP velocity 1-7/8 2 inch powder load data site:http://castboolits.gunloads.com

    ^ If you copy & then paste that line above^ into a search engine , you should get the links to just this forum and more info about the load you are seeking.

    BTW - having a chronograph to see just where you are getting for velocity and starting with a 10% reduction of the recommended loads if there is no recommended START load reference for a powder & then working up to the MAX load data reference first, will help you find what you are seeking & do it safer than just jumping up to the MAX to start. If you keep records of your findings as well, it will be helpful not only for yourself, but then you have something to share with others here to help them out in the future.
    Maybe sometime I will do just what I am suggesting, but currently I have a lot of other "irons in the fire" & don't feel the need to do such testing. Be nice if You did it & then shared with us what ya find though.


    Anyway, G'Luck! & I hope ya safely find the load you seek...


    ETA: Hey, I just wanted to add that it is obviously , entirely Up To You, or anyone else to exceed the current recommended MAX loads in their firearms, if you so desire.

    It is just that I am not advocating for anyone to do so.

    I would also add that if you really want to get some good reading about this type of thing, the link below for a topic in this forum, will likely not only be educational , but entertaining, in the 7 pages worth( 241 posts) in it, that were posted before the topic was Closed to any more posting. Check it out!

    http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...-FBI-load-quot


    Once again, G'Luck!
    Last edited by JBinMN; 04-15-2019 at 01:02 PM.
    2nd Amend./U.S. Const. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

    ~~ WWG1WGA ~~

    For the Fudds > "Those who appease a tiger, do so in the hope that the tiger will eat them last." -Winston Churchill.

    President Reagan tells it like it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c6MwPgPK7WQ

    Phil Robertson explains the Wall: https://youtu.be/f9d1Wof7S4o

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
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    You all are great! Thanks for your help.

  10. #10
    Boolit Man
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    Years ago, I managed to get some of the CA Highway Patrol issue 38 Special +P+ ammo which had a 110 great JHP bullet. When I pulled it apart it had a 7.75gr of a grey flaked powder similar in appearance to Unique/Herco. Notice that I said "similar". Lyman #47 manual lists 7.0 gr of Unique under a 110 gr bullet as a +P load. So, 7.75 gr seems to be in the ballpark.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy

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    All this talk of hot loads made me think of Elmer Keith's comment on the J frame, years ago: "Your hand will give up long before the gun does."

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Just so ya know... 7 gr. HS-6 will exceed Hodgdons "current" recommended MAX for a 38 Sp. +P of 6.6 gr..
    JB,

    That's only because for many years now, Hodgdon has only listed 158gr jacketed bullets for +P loads. For 158gr lead SWC's, 7.2gr is the Max load.

    Don
    NRA Certified Metallic Cartridge Reloading Instructor

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by USSR View Post
    JB,

    That's only because for many years now, Hodgdon has only listed 158gr jacketed bullets for +P loads. For 158gr lead SWC's, 7.2gr is the Max load.

    Don
    Don/USSR, I was only doing a quick search thru the internet & their reloading data easily available & did not go looking into any of my own manuals or make a detailed search for exact data for 158gr. LSWCHP & that was all Hodgdon had to offer on their own load data page. Rather than suggest something else, I decided to make sure that the OP/Hi-Speed, or any other reader, was going to be aware to check loads "on his/her own" to verify any data, so deferring to the lower load , IMO, was the safer of the load data. Along with that, I also offered that the OP/Hi-Speed shoud actually "do the research" to verify load data, rather than just depend on others to give up data that can easily be "typo-ed" and a mistake made in the sharing of that data.(Another reason I give the "Source" of what I share when I "do" share" load data info. )

    I will likely go down to my reloading room later tonite or tomorrow & look up & see what I can find for 158gr. LSWCHP load data in the manuals I have here, & also look a bit more on the internet for the sources available there for such loads & different powders. Like I said earlier though, I have more than a "few irons in the fire" right now & can only juggle so much with my time.


    I do have some load data to share here right now, along with a source link below that, & I would also like to add that I think that some other powders different from the ones mentioned already, may lend to higher velocities if one wants to go look. (Alliant Power Pistol seems to "take the cake", so far though , if I am not mistaken. ) There are to be found at the link below using 38 Special +P for the caliber & when the list is opened, make sure to look to add more than the 10 entries that is the default & open the tab to click on 50 , since there are 31 options for loads, other than the 20=/1 I share below from that source...
    The list contains other powders that will also put the velocities up a bit higher, like the ones I list below along with the link to the source:

    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC AL Bullseye 3.8 945 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC Blue Dot 6.3 995 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC American Select 4.3 950 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC Red Dot 3.2 855 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 gr. LSWC Win 231 4.7 860 0.000 Winchester
    38 Special +P 158 158 gr. LSWC WST 3.9 800 0.000 Winchester
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC AL Red Dot 3.2 855 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 gr. LSWC Win WST 3.9 800 0.000 Winchester
    38 Special +P 158 158 gr. LSWC Win 231 4.7 860 0.000 Winchester
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC AL American Select 4.3 950 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC Unique 4.5 950 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC Bullseye 3.8 945 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC Green Dot 3.7 910 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC AL Blue Dot 6.3 995 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC AL Green Dot 3.7 910 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC AL Herco 4.7 965 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158gr Lead SWC AA Nitro 100 NF 3.0 851 1.000 Accurate Web
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC AL Unique 4.5 950 1.000 Alliant
    38 Special +P 158 158 gr Lead SWC Rex II 4.0 923 0.000 Rex Website
    38 Special +P 158 158 gr Lead SWC Rex II 4.0 923 0.000 Rex Website
    38 Special +P 158 158 LSWC Herco 4.7 965
    Source:http://castpics.net/dpl/index.php/re...et-data-lookup

    NOTE - Comparing some of the load data & velocities(fps) withe load data that has "specifics" about bbl. length will help since there is no bbl. length given that I saw, for the load data & velocities(fps) above. I do not know the bbl lengths used to test those loads for velocity, so a comparison with other data would be a good idea if you have it, or can find it.


    Having a chronograph & doing ones own testing working up the loads looking at velocities & signs of issue such as over-pressure, like primer flattening, sticking cases, etc., IMO, is the best way for someone to find what they are looking for & compare what powders they have available to them to find out what works the best for them. All the rest of us can do is offer what we can find or what we have done to help out...

    Like most here, I am only trying to help & not trying to start any hassles for anyone. I only have time right now to try to point in the right direction & hopefully do a decent enough job that no one damages anything, or themselves in doing so.

    I will try to add more info as I have time to find it & share it here.
    Last edited by JBinMN; 04-15-2019 at 09:09 PM. Reason: Yep... Spelling, syntax & whatevers.. ;-)
    2nd Amend./U.S. Const. - "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

    ~~ WWG1WGA ~~

    For the Fudds > "Those who appease a tiger, do so in the hope that the tiger will eat them last." -Winston Churchill.

    President Reagan tells it like it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c6MwPgPK7WQ

    Phil Robertson explains the Wall: https://youtu.be/f9d1Wof7S4o

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    ...I bought today a 1 lbs of Accurate No 5 (AA5) - based on Speer data, AA5 gives higher velocities than Unique. Based on these discussions, it is probably prudent for me to use a slower burning powder as AA5. Speer’s starting +P load with AA5 (6.2 grs) and 158 gr lswc, approximates Unique’s max load of 5.2 grs with same bullet.

    I’ll test hopefully soon and report back.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master RED BEAR's Avatar
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    Not sure what the velocity of those factory loads but here is something for thought http://ballisticsbytheinch.com/38special.html also check there info on cylinder gaps. The real world test were interesting to me.

  16. #16
    Boolit Grand Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by Hi-Speed View Post
    ...what charge would you recommend with Unique to duplicate Win/Rem/Fed “FBI” loads in 1 7/8 S&W snub noses?

    4.7 grs? 5.2 grs (Max)?
    What cast bullet specifically? With various 150 - 158 gr softer cast LSWCs or LSWCHPs the seating depth of the particular bullet used is going to determine the max load more than any other factor.
    Larry Gibson

    “Deficient observation is merely a form of ignorance and responsible for the many morbid notions and foolish ideas prevailing.”
    ― Nikola Tesla

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy
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    Larry, using either Speer LSWCHP or Hornady LSWCHP...

  18. #18
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill*B View Post
    All this talk of hot loads made me think of Elmer Keith's comment on the J frame, years ago: "Your hand will give up long before the gun does."
    if you are buying factory +P+ ammo, you wallet will likely wear out before your AL framed J Frame will.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check