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Thread: 350 Legend -thoughts and experiences?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master bedbugbilly's Avatar
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    350 Legend -thoughts and experiences?

    Since it is a fairly new cartridge, I though this might be the best place to post this. The self-quarantine we are all experiencing has allowed me to do a number of things – one of which is to sit and explore and read about cartridges I’m not familiar with – just for the sake of learning new things. A few weeks ago, when I picked up my new Ruger American Ranch rifle in 5.56/.223 at a LGS, they had one in 350 Legend. I wasn’t familiar with the cartridge so the owner gave me a brief “short course” on it and I decided to do more digging on it. Now my deer hunting days are over but if I was still deer hunting in Michigan, I would definitely be interested in a rifle chambered in this – whether I ever get one or not for playing with reloads at the range and for plinking, I don’t know – but I find it interesting and would like to hear from those on here who may have a rifle in that caliber and if they are reloading and shooting cast.

    I suppose that some may argue that a 357 Mag would do the same thing. I had a 357 Handi – never reamed the chamber to 357 but the chamber was deep enough that I could use 360 Dan Wesson brass in it – a tad bit longer than the 357 Mag. I shot everything in that rifle – smokeless and black powder including 38 Colt Shorts, Longs, Specials, 357 and the 360 DW – all handloads with a wide variety of designs and grain weights of boolits – a lot of fun. For a cartridge that came out in 2019 or thereabouts, the 350 Legend seems to have been picked up by a lot of different gunmakers – both in bolt action and I’m guessing AR platforms. Brass is not readily available from Starline and others, dies from Lee, RCDS and others and with the size of the bore, a wide variety of molds available already that should work.

    From what I’m reading, the effective range for a rifle with a full power cartridge is about 250 yards. I would think that the cartridge would be easily downloaded for general plinking and range shooting at shorter distances and overall, with the recoil of the cartridge, be excellent for oldters, women and youngsters to shoot without taking a beating.

    I did a search on here but there aren’t too many posts that I came up with for the 350 Legend.

    If you have a rifle chambered in it – could you share your thoughts on the rifle and on the cartridge? Are you hunting or range shooting or both with it? If you are shooting cast – what have your experiences been and what kind of bullet designs, weights and loading data are you using? Is the cartridge a “keeper” for you or do you think the novelty will wear off? I’m sure it is here to stay, the same as the 450 Bushmaster but how far will it extend beyond the hog hunters and those that live in states that require a straight wall cartridge in their restrictions for deer hunting.

    I don’t know if I will pursue a rifle in this caliber later on, but the idea of having a wide variety of molds already that would work and playing with different loads I do find appealing. Ideally, I’d love to have a single shot in 350 Leend – since Henry makes their single shots in .223 and 357, I would think it would be an easy offering to come up with a single shot in it.

    At any rate, I think it’s an interesting cartridge and would love to hear from those that have a rifle chambered in it as to how they like it and what they are doing with it. If nothing more, it at least offers hunters in Michigan and other states a decent cartridge to hunt whitetails with where bottlenecks can't be used.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master
    Mk42gunner's Avatar
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    I don't have one, but I did a bit of reading about it when I first heard about it last year.

    I was pretty eager to get one until I sat down and did some thinking.

    1. I don't deer hunt very much any more so I really don't need yet another cartridge to play around with; I have rifles that haven't been to the range in years.

    2. I live in Missouri, where we can use real rifles for whitetail. I would hate to be look out over a field and see Bambi's grandpa at 3-400 yards and have a 250 yard rifle in my hands.

    3. If I want to hunt thickets and under a couple hundred yards, I already have a 30-30 and a .35 Remington.

    I do however think it is a dandy cartridge for those formerly shotgun only states, light recoil and some pretty handy rifle/carbines for it.

    I also think it would be a good round for hog hunting (never done it, so take this for what its worth) in an AR.

    With all that said, I wouldn't refuse one if it were given to me.

    Robert

  3. #3
    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by Mk42gunner View Post
    I don't have one, but I did a bit of reading about it when I first heard about it last year.

    I was pretty eager to get one until I sat down and did some thinking.

    1. I don't deer hunt very much any more so I really don't need yet another cartridge to play around with; I have rifles that haven't been to the range in years.

    2. I live in Missouri, where we can use real rifles for whitetail. I would hate to be look out over a field and see Bambi's grandpa at 3-400 yards and have a 250 yard rifle in my hands.

    3. If I want to hunt thickets and under a couple hundred yards, I already have a 30-30 and a .35 Remington.

    I do however think it is a dandy cartridge for those formerly shotgun only states, light recoil and some pretty handy rifle/carbines for it.

    I also think it would be a good round for hog hunting (never done it, so take this for what its worth) in an AR.

    With all that said, I wouldn't refuse one if it were given to me.

    Robert
    Not much more to add. My buddy who lives in southern MI got one. Look forward to shooting it. Proprietary case kills it for me...and it offers nothing to make it worth adding.
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  4. #4
    Boolit Grand Master


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    There was quite a bit of talk about it here over several months, this and a few other threads; http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...350-Legend-yet

    I pretty much share dverna's opinions of it, it's a niche cartridge, if you don't live someplace with that silly straight wall restriction, there are much better cartridges and wherever you live there are better cartridges for range play.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

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    Right now most all bullets have problems with expansion. They don't. Ammo companies don't know how to load the cartridge. Hornady right now is blowing up guns left and right. They are also not taking any responsibility for it also. Win did have problems at first for the same thing. But they fixed that.

    One guy out there is making solid copper bullets and they are working great. AR15's are having the most problems. Certain manufacturers are worse than others. Most of the problems are the BCG being too tight and rough finishing causing feed issues. Most try to blame the mags for feed issues but the BCG is actually the problem. So swap another bcg from a used AR and the problem goes away.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    Well the 350 Legend is more like the 357 Remington Maximum. But as a rimless version. The 350 Legend was developed for those states requiring the cartridge to have a straight wall case. It does quite well for deer hunting or pig hunting at shorter ranges out to maybe 150 to 200 yards. It has the versatile advantage of being used in AR platforms, semi-auto, single shot and bolt action guns too. But the recoil is more manageable compared to the popular 450 Bushmaster and 45-70 guns. It is more powerful than the .357 Magnum and even nudges out the .44 Magnum in this respect too. I have been thinking about building up a AR upper for my use too. But I am in no hurry as I have a lot of guns already. I guess its limitation is in overall cartridge length with heavier and longer bullets though. It depends on the gun's magazine as to the overall length of the cartridge versus case capacity reduction for propellant. This would not normally be a problem for single shot guns of course. So its next limitation is in the bullet choices and weights as it uses a .355" size (9mm) bullet width and not the .357"-.358" bullets.

  7. #7
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    currently you can get ammunition for the 450 bushmaster that on paper beats 20 guage shotgun sabots at 150 yards in energy and almost meet the output of a trapdoor carbine BP load

    a 7.62x39 necked out to .357 would be a far superior choice

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    It looks like you could make cases for it out of .223, with the old 5gr. Bullseye/case full of cornmeal, as we made cases for the .375 Winchester out of .30-30s, when it first came out. At least with a bolt action rifle. Then trim to length. The ballistics are .30-30 equivalent with jacketed bullets, but with cast bullets you could push 160 to 180 grain bullets to .35 WSL - .351 WSL ballistics, I should think, and those guns killed deer (maybe at shorter ranges).
    "You will wantonly strike a hornet's nest which extends from mountains to ocean, and legions, now quiet, will swarm out and sting us to death. It is unnecessary; it puts us in the wrong; it is fatal." Robert Toombs, Democrat of Georgia, warning of the results of the imminent attack of the Confederacy upon Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor, 1861

  9. #9
    Boolit Master

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    You can not make cases that are safe to shoot past the fire forming stage. Some have tried but most all failed. If you are going to shoot very low powered cast in a bolt action then maybe.

  10. #10
    Boolit Grand Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by 26Charlie View Post
    It looks like you could make cases for it out of .223, with the old 5gr. Bullseye/case full of cornmeal, as we made cases for the .375 Winchester out of .30-30s, when it first came out. At least with a bolt action rifle. Then trim to length. The ballistics are .30-30 equivalent with jacketed bullets, but with cast bullets you could push 160 to 180 grain bullets to .35 WSL - .351 WSL ballistics, I should think, and those guns killed deer (maybe at shorter ranges).
    The .351 works well on deer with cast bullets. I admit to being a close range hunter, but I'd do that regardless of what I used, I like to shoot unalarmed deer up close.

    Interesting the mention of the .351 WSL, it was the first thing I thought of when they introduced this .350 Legend. SSDD.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by tomme boy View Post
    You can not make cases that are safe to shoot past the fire forming stage. Some have tried but most all failed. If you are going to shoot very low powered cast in a bolt action then maybe.
    That is an excellent point!!!
    Don Verna

    NRA Endowment Member

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Thoughts many, experience none. When first media push started by the peddlers I thought it might be fun to venture into and started absorbing the info. Having assembled all but one in the pile of AR's here, SOCOM's, 450B's on down with sonic and subs and the usual path of what I would want and from who began. From the start it seemed to me there were a lot of dimensional variables between many things and the projectile performance discussions never ending. Been in this game for decades and fully understand the Ford, Chevy, Dodge fun that fills the majority of most forums but the little voice has me in a holding pattern. If I feel I must have one in the future it will probably be a bolt gun squirting lead.

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    Tomme boy and dverna: why is that? What would make them unsafe? You might have to anneal the necks before forming, but the cartridge headspaces on the mouth of the case. Trim length would be critical, I grant you.
    "You will wantonly strike a hornet's nest which extends from mountains to ocean, and legions, now quiet, will swarm out and sting us to death. It is unnecessary; it puts us in the wrong; it is fatal." Robert Toombs, Democrat of Georgia, warning of the results of the imminent attack of the Confederacy upon Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor, 1861

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by 26Charlie View Post
    It looks like you could make cases for it out of .223, with the old 5gr. Bullseye/case full of cornmeal, as we made cases for the .375 Winchester out of .30-30s, when it first came out. At least with a bolt action rifle. Then trim to length. The ballistics are .30-30 equivalent with jacketed bullets, but with cast bullets you could push 160 to 180 grain bullets to .35 WSL - .351 WSL ballistics, I should think, and those guns killed deer (maybe at shorter ranges).
    The cartridge cases are slightly larger at the base than the .223 cartridge cases. The extraction rim is the same though. .390" base diameter for the 350 Legend versus the .376" base diameter with the .223 Rem. Thus you cannot use .223 brass to make .350 Legend cases.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master FergusonTO35's Avatar
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    They are selling fairly well here, even though you can use any centerfire firearm you want to for deer. I think alot of hunters are adopting the mindset that we are about to get overrun with hogs and so might as well get something ideal for them.
    Currently casting and loading: .32 Auto, .380 Auto, .38 Special, 9X19, .357 Magnum, .257 Roberts, .30 WCF, .45-70 Gov't.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master bedbugbilly's Avatar
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    Thanks to everyone for your kind responses. This has certainly been an interesting and educational read!

    I'm "older" like a lot of folks here and I can appreciate the comments about already having rifles in other calibers that you don't have enough time to fully attend to so is there a reason to add another one?

    I can easily see how the cartridge serves a certain "niche". When I was deer hanging on the farm many years ago, it was "shotgun only". I usually hunted in the woods or swampy and hilly areas so there were never any long distance potential for shots. The years that I hunted with my father-in-law up in the U.P. - I of course used a bottleneck - either a 30-30 or a 8 X 57 Mauser I had at the time - but then again, we mainly hunted in the woods or in areas where there weren't long shot distances.

    Location is everything and I am glad that a number of states opened up from shotgun only to allow straight wall pistol calibers - it should have been done many years previous. I had to smile at Mk42gunner[s comment that he lived in Missouri where "real rifles" could be used - and I mean no offense when I say that. Where I shoot now out here in AZ - it's a lot different than in lower Michigan. It's in the desert and the spot we shoot at, we can shoot out to around 230 yards. While I'm not an "AR guy", my friend let me shoot his and I can certainly see the attraction that so many have for them. It was because of that experience though that I got interested in the 223 and ended up buying a bolt rifle to reload for and have fun with. In a state where you can shoot bottlenecks, I would imagine that the 350 Legend has very little appeal and that is understandable. When you look at the wide variety of bottleneck cartridges there are, a person could spend their entire lifetime working their way through them all and never be finished. I'm guessing the for myself, while I find the 350 Legend interesting, I will probably not go in that direction as I have a number of rifles and cartridges that I want to explore further and play with loads, etc.

    I think it is also interesting to sit and see the cartridge being developed for a niche and how in such a short time so many gun makers have boarded the train to get their share of the market. I will probably never live long enough to see it, but it would be interesting to know if such a cartridge will remain popular - such as the 30-30, 30-06, 45ACP, etc. or if they will go by the wayside - of course none of us can force what the future holds as far as where hunting and shooting will be 100 years from now.

    Thanks again for you responses and thoughts - greatly appreciated!

    Jim

  17. #17
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    There have been quite a few thread in the 9mm long Er.

    Hashed and re hashed and complained about some more. I’m guilty of all that too. Loved the maxi. Wanted it in a repeater. Thought that’s what this would be... NOPE Winchester fudged that all up well!!

    But here we are many months later and now we ah e some bullets and rifles in many flavors are out. Winchester just started shipping a couple New bullets and other manufacturers are jumping on board every day.

    I have a RUGER American Bolt. It shoots well and I do like it. I justified it as a cast bullet shooter. So far I have a real good plinking load. And nothing else in cast. But 165 FTX are shooting great as are 140 FTX re sized.

    Matter in fact I Am hoping to ventilate a coyote or two with 140ftx here pretty quickly.

    CW
    NRA Life member • REMEMBER, FREEDOM IS NOT FREE its being paid for in BLOOD.

  18. #18
    Boolit Buddy
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    Jim,

    It's not a niche chambering at all, the 357 max, 357 max AR, 357 max rimless, 357 super mag, all failed to grab the market but still had a following and I even had a Handi rechambered for the Max since it uses a straight wall cartridge (Love straight walls!) but due to sporadic brass availability and lack of production, I sold it off. Very sad day indeed.

    When the 350LGD showed up about a year ago, I about fell out of my chair! Then came plinking ammo for about $0.50 a round, new brass from Starline priced at half that and once fired showed up for half again per cart. A VIABLE CARTRIDGE! At long last!

    I waited until BCA caught up after Christmas and got an upper from them and loaded the brass using my data from the Max data I had on hand but fell back to using the Hogdon online data as it seemed to provide better pressures and accuracy.

    Then I picked up an Axis (LH) for fun and to load some BP cartridges, sized 9mm bullets and .38/.357 boolits etc.

    LOTS of fun and in the AR, dead accurate with H110 pushing a cast/PC 200gr LEE boolit out to 225 yds with fantastic results with Coyote. Deer next year as I got it too late for last years season. I cannot wait to play with powders, loads, weights, duplex loads etc. This is going to be a lot of fun!

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  19. #19
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    I have read the discussion with interest, but unless you live in a state which requires straight-wall cartridges I don't really see the need. I don't care for the AR platform and I am a dinosaur who prefers lever-actions, so the .35/.30-30 was a natural choice for me to salvage an old 1908 Winchester 1894 with shot-out barrel. I wanted to split the difference between a .32-40 and a .38-55 and I shoot mostly 240-260-grain plainbased, flatnosed bullets from about 1000 to 1600 fps max. It makes a very pleasant plinker, varmint and woods-range deer rifle. Cases are easy to make by just necking up .30-30 or .32 WS or necking down Starline .38-55. Getting dies which form cases perfectly in one pass and which do what I wanted was a bit pricey, but well worth the expenditure for me.
    The ENEMY is listening.
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  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    I have followed the 350L closely as I got a 357AR Max just before the 350L was introduced.

    The 357AR Max can be formed from 223.

    This does not work in the legend as once the case is expanded or blown out to fit the chamber, the brass is too short for good headspacing.

    Headspacing on the mouth with a long round like the 350L is part of what makes this round tricky / finicky. The potential for a tight chamber neck also can cause problems (even for us boolit guys). Getting the round to feed Boolits happy in AR at this point is also seems to be hit or miss. Some people get guns / ammo that work good and others get surprised with problems.

    As a long time 357 Max guy, I like having a ballistic twin that works in a semi-automatic rifle. For actual function in my situation, my 357AR Max has some clear advantages over the 350L.

    However, for someone wanting a 357 Max / 35 Rem equivalent in a readily obtainable gun with good ammo options, the 350L can be a fine choice. For dear hunters in the straight wall states, it has a pretty good potential of making a buyer very happy.

    Having said that, I will admit that there are factors that increase the possibility of frustrations in dealing with the round (the 0.355 bore, tight neck, headspacing issues, feeding issues).

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