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Thread: Federal 130 gr. MICRO loads

  1. #1
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    Federal 130 gr. MICRO loads

    I have gotten a supply of the Federal 130 gr. HST MICRO boolits, and am about to begin carefully working up loads. The fellow I got them from suggests reducing his Unique loads to 4-4.5 gr. to start. That sounds like a good place for me to start...that and Speer's published loads for its 135 gr Gold Dot boolit.

    Now, a favor, please.

    If anyone has the Quickload software, could they run a load for the Federal projectile with AA#5 powder? Cartridge overall length 1.395" Boolit length, .605", 357magnum brass.

    I know this is Terra Incognita, so I will proceed very carefully!

    I sent my Dillon Eliminator scale to them for repair...they told me it was unrepairable, and they were sending me a new one! THANK YOU DILLON! Should be here this week.
    Then...loading the new "J" woid boolits!

    Thanx!
    Last edited by sniper; 01-16-2020 at 02:05 AM.
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  2. #2
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    From Quickload 357 Mag, 130gn Jacketed bullet .605", loaded to 1.395"
    I'm guessing a 4" barrel, so put 5.5" in Quickload
    AA#5 8.3gns should give 1379fps @ 35kpsi. 67%
    AA#7 10.9gns should give 1420fps @ 35kpsi 85%
    AA#9 11.8gns should give 1391fps @ 35kpsi 93%

    Unique 4.5gns should give 970fps @ 14.8kpsi. 59%
    Unique 7gns should give 1356fps @ 35kpsi. 91%
    2400 12.1gns should give 1417fps @35kpsi 107%

    I only listed the max loads as you can back off 10-15% and start there.
    If you have a different barrel length, let me know and I can adjust the numbers.
    I wanted to run BlueDot, but they say not to use with 125gn JHPs, Qload says it will push 1400fps-ish.
    Double check numbers against published load data if possible.
    Quickload is normally fairly close on velocity for me, but sometimes can be abit off of published data, so just be careful.
    Glenn.

  3. #3
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    Smile

    Thank you! You guessed right..4" barrel. That's exactly what I needed!
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  4. #4
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    A caution...the 130 Federal HST has a very deep hollow point and is long. It is deeply seated in the case. The bullet is longer than a 130 of solid or even standard HP construction. So do work up carefully.

    I have a number of the factory loads myself and carry them. The ballistic nerd in me would like to see a little less expansion and somewhat more penetration from the 38 factory loads but I will note they do get past the FBI minimums in most tests I have seen. So I am asking for a little “gooder” I guess.

    Driving these faster will likely make penetration even worse, for whatever that is worth. From snubby Smith barrels the factory loads do about 820 fps. I am pretty sure 357 speeds will be too much unless varmints of the small four legged variety are your target.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35remington View Post
    A caution...the 130 Federal HST has a very deep hollow point and is long. It is deeply seated in the case. The bullet is longer than a 130 of solid or even standard HP construction. So do work up carefully.

    I have a number of the factory loads myself and carry them. The ballistic nerd in me would like to see a little less expansion and somewhat more penetration from the 38 factory loads but I will note they do get past the FBI minimums in most tests I have seen. So I am asking for a little “gooder” I guess.
    THAT'S why we Reload, and discuss stuff on the fora. We ALL want just a little"gooder"! And...we want it SAFE! Your point regarding the longer boolit is well taken. FWIW, all of my OAL measurements are taken with .357 Magnum brass.

    I just did some measuring, and found the OAL of the Federal 130 gr Micros is not all that different than 158 gr. Cast SWCs or 160 gr. RNFP boolits.
    The difference is the cartridge overall length. There are two options when seating the Federales...at the cannelure, where you may adjust the COAL to 1.580-1.590"...357 Magnum length if you wish, and .38 Special +P loads can be used. OR...like Federal loads them with about .0085 peeking out of the case, giving a COAL of ~1.350. That's using the TLAR (That Looks About Right) method, and reduced loads similar to .38 standard pressure may be required. At any rate, overdriving the boolits beyond the factory designed parameters is counterproductive, which is why I will be aiming for a top velocity of ~ 900 fps. Even out of my .357 Magnum!

    In the instance of the short rounds, considering DEWC loads is a good place to start, IMO.

    It is the inner dimension that needs watching! My Federal reloads, at 1.350" OAL have .550" of boolit inside the case, reducing powder capacity radically. the next longest boolit in my inventory is the Dardas 148 gr. DEWC, crimped in the top groove, with ~.475" measured from crimping groove to the base. Keeping in mind the NRA and others' pressure studies from deep-seating boolits, a SAFE starting load should be found somewhere in .38 Spl. data, using Unique, AA#5, Love Potion #9, Universal, and maybe Trail Boss. I haven't used Boolseye for Decades, but IMR 800X or Hodgdon's HP-38 seem interesting.

    Anyhoo, that's where I am today. Proceeding carefully into Terra Incognita...Suggestions and corrections are welcome!
    Last edited by sniper; 01-23-2020 at 02:23 PM.
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  6. #6
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    The deep seating of the bullet is very much welcomed in reducing velocity variations inherent in longer cases. The 38 normally sees 100 plus fps variation with powder shifted front to back using standard 158 SWC or RN.

    Titegroup does somewhat better, but all powders have reduced velocity variation when wadcutters are used and case space reduced.

    The 357 opens up the case space another eighth inch versus the 38, but Titegroup helps to offset the increased volume as it is a bit less position sensitive. I would think a good combo would be Titegroup in those 357 cases to obtain 850-900 fps. Then velocity variation should be as low as is possible to obtain when getting 900 fps in a 357 case.

    If it were me I would seat them fully in the case as Federal does with the 38 factory loads and crimp lightly over the curved beginning of the jacket. Seating them out is asking for higher velocity variation at low pressure and powder charge weights even with Titegroup. Even with a deep seated bullet the pressures will be plenty low for any 357 chambered gun. Hopefully this will work with your case wall thickness.

    How did you score a supply of these bullets? Any way you could point me toward some? I would like to try some things with them myself and the factory loaded ammo is too dear at about a buck a shot. Plus I gotta use their powder charge rather than mine.

    I do still wish the jacket peeled back less and the bullet had more of a lengthy cylindrical shank after expanding, hoping for 15-16+ inches myself. Although as I said most testing of factory loads with this bullet shows penetration at or only slightly in excess of the 12” FBI minimum. I was looking for a bit more margin than that.

    The perfect 38 expanding bullet really does not exist. Yet, in my opinion. The HST 130 is a nice try and about as good as anything else for the most part. I do like the deep bullet seating and the advantage that gives but I was hoping for somewhat more from it. When I figure barely past 12” of jello is not enough I fall back on a cast wadcutter at 780 fps. That will pretty much double that figure.
    Last edited by 35remington; 01-20-2020 at 06:43 PM.

  7. #7
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    Hmmm...Titegroup, eh? I may have to add that to my supply. I recently got some 800 X from a local fellow...$ 15 a pound, but Titegroup might be a good one to try, too. Thanx for the suggestion.

    I went on Gunbroker and searched .38 Wadcutter, then scrollled till I found them.
    There is a business in the Midwest that somehow can get the boolits. They had/have a small supply, selling them at $15/200 + Priority shipping. Worth it, IMO. They probably will be able to get more if/when they run out. Good luck!

    My go-to load for IPSC and other duties is a 150- 158 gr Cast SWC @860 fps...pleasant to shoot, accurate, no expansion but good penetration! 148 gr. DEWC @ ~800 fps are just another arrow in my quiver, and I can make them!

    "Jello"tests are interesting, but my edc ammo...Remmie Golden Saber 125 gr. +P and Speer 135 gr. Short Barrel +P also have good street results, and that's the way to bet, I figure. The Federal Micro HST seems like it will be right in there with them.
    Last edited by sniper; 01-20-2020 at 09:07 PM.
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  8. #8
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    Got it! Thanks!

  9. #9
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    Just a suggestion from considerable use in that somewhere between 4 and 5 grains TG should get the desired velocity in the 357 case. Most likely between 4 and 4.5 grains.

  10. #10
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    Thanx!
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  11. #11
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    I'm sorry, I didn't realize that you were looking for 900fps. I gave you everything that you were not looking for, lol.
    Anyway, 357 mag 4" barrel, Quickload 5.5", Cartridge overall length 1.395" 130gn Boolit length, .605", 357magnum brass:
    Titegroup 3.5gns 899fps @ 15kpsi 36%
    HP38 3.8gns 900fps @ 14kpsi 38%
    AA#2 4.2gns 914fps @ 14kpsi 53%
    AA#5 5.1gns 904fps @ 13kpsi 41%
    RedDot 3.2gns 904fps @ 15kpsi 54%
    Bullseye 3.6gns 897fps @ 13kpsi 46%

    FWIW

  12. #12
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    3.5 Titegroup, in a 38 case, gets around 880 fps with a 148 wadcutter in a four inch.

    Given the longer 357 case and greater drag of a jacketed bullet I’ll prophesy it will take a bit more than that to get where you want to go.

  13. #13
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    Thank you lar45, and 35remington! Your input has been/will be valuable!
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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