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Thread: Elmer Keith's SIXGUNS question

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
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    Elmer Keith's SIXGUNS question

    Certainly a few readers here have this book. I wonder if one of you could look in his reloading chapter and answer a question.

    Did EK discuss handloads for the .38 Special? If so, did he suggest any powders other than Hercules 2400?

    Thanks. Look forward to your response.
    PBSmith

  2. #2
    Boolit Buddy
    zarrinvz24's Avatar
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    He discussed several other powders but they’ve all been discontinued. The data is very aged, but it’s a good read regardless.

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy JAC43's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smithnframe View Post
    I think xx grains of 2400 with his bullet was his go to load in the 38 special!
    Jeez, no. Delete this info. That was his 38/44 load, not his 38 Special load.

  4. #4
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smithnframe View Post
    I think xx grains of 2400 with his bullet was his go to load in the 38 special!
    And that is too hot in .38 Special cases. Please refer to Larry Gibson's pressure tested data.
    Last edited by Minerat; 11-24-2021 at 10:54 PM. Reason: Quoted load fix
    The ENEMY is listening.
    HE wants to know what YOU know.
    Keep it to yourself.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Outpost75 View Post
    And that is too hot in .38 Special cases. Please refer to Larry Gibson's pressure tested data.
    Where can this be found?

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnH View Post
    Where can this be found?
    He has posted it on this forum and also in The Fouling Shot.
    The ENEMY is listening.
    HE wants to know what YOU know.
    Keep it to yourself.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master derek45's Avatar
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    He mentions 2.5-3.0gr Bullseye with standard weight 38 bullets for practice.

    The book is affordable on amazon, why not ask Santa for a copy ?
    .


    NRA LIFE Member

    USPSA/IPSC

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    I've got a hardback copy signed by Elmer Keith which I treasure and have read and re-read for decades. I admire him greatly, but don't want to shoot his heavy 38 spl loads in my model 36, 10, 14, or 15.

  9. #9
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    FLINTNFIRE's Avatar
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    Oh when I was younger I used to load hot and light in my model 19 revolvers , then I happened on a article discussing cracking the forcing cone , all those hot 110-125 grain hollow points now rest in a ammo can .

    This topic of running hot 38 special comes around every year or so , why ? buy yourself a L or N frame or another make of 357 designed for stiffer loads , if it is for the rare chance encounter of a fire breathing dragon or some such monster beast that one feels the need to hotrod the 38 for , well go ahead its your gun .

    A friend used to buy loads at a gun show he told me they were marked 38++p and some were really light , I still remember his ruger sp 101 when it malfunctioned , run things hot and hard and it puts more wear and tear on them .

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
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    Thanks zar and derek for reading the inquiry correctly and for your responses. I was merely curious as to what powders Keith used.
    Last edited by PBSmith; 11-26-2021 at 01:52 PM.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy PBSmith's Avatar
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    Rest assured, lads, I have no intention of goon-loading the .38 Special - nor any other cartridge or weapon.
    Last edited by PBSmith; 11-26-2021 at 07:57 PM.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master


    Walks's Avatar
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    When I was a kid way back before the last ice age, My Dad loaded the Keith Bullet in a .38Spl case with the SIXGUNS Load of 2400 for use in an Outdoorsman, Heavy Duty and Post-war Official Police. He also gave those loads to Friends and We used them for jackrabbit hunting.
    I don't use THAT load anymore, but rather a +P load with Unique under a PC'd #358429 that drops at 173grs.
    I HATE auto-correct

    Happiness is a Warm GUN & more ammo to shoot in it.

    My Experience and My Opinion, are just that, Mine.

    SASS #375 Life

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Outpost75 View Post
    He has posted it on this forum and also in The Fouling Shot.
    Thank you

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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