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Thread: My new Martini Cadet

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    My new Martini Cadet

    So I bought a .357 Magnum Martini Cadet that was rechambered from the original .310 Cadet Caliber. That being said my state requires 1200 lb•ft or more of muzzle energy to use for Deer Hunting. I bought some Buffalo Bore Ammo 180gr Hard Cast Outdoorsman that when I emailed them they said that in there tests out of a rifle with an 18.5" barrel made almost 1600 lb•ft of energy. I told them my barrel was 25" and they said the ammo should make around 1400 lb•ft of energy at the muzzle which is over the state limit. They also told me the Hard Cast would do better in my barrel length then their Hollow Point 180gr .357 would. I bought the ammo and went to a local gun club that has testing equipment like chronographs. I shot 5 rounds through the chronograph at a target 50 yards away. The rifle grouped great but the measurement was not what was stated by Buffalo Bore. The fastest bullet to leave the barrel was the third shot at 1,825fps. The median fps was 1,757, calculated made the median lb•ft measurement out to be 761.12 lb•ft and the highest measurement was 790.57 lb•ft. Definitely was bummed out that the ammo didnt live up to what they told me to expect. I emailed them and they are going to send out another batch of 20 rounds. I fired 5 more rounds and out of a total of 10 the measurements stayed practically the same. Some of the old guys at the club said .357 Magnum will never live up to the state regulations so I should get a bigger rifle. I will wait for the next 20 rounds to come in and try again. Kinda bummed cause it was $60 with shipping and taxes for 20 rounds, I was told I would be reimbursed if the next 20 rounds dont live up to what they stand by. With all that being said one old guy who was helping me with the chronograph test said his father bought and .357 Cadet in 2002 and had it rechambered for .357 Super Mag by having the barrel reamed. Is that all that is needed to make the rifle .357 Super Magnum ? He did tell me .357 Maximum requires a whole new barrel and breech. Thanks for any replies, also could there be something wrong with my rifle that could be causing the bullets to travel so slow ? Buffalo Bore said I should expect to get around 2000fps with a 25" barrel. Thanks for all replies and any suggestions/advice. I guess I will be using my flintlock for the rest of the season or unless this new batch of bullets has an improved performance.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    The figures given dont add up.......however a 180gr at 1750/ 1800 f/sec has about 1100/1200 ft lb at the muzzle ,so comes a bit short ......to get over 1400 ft /lb you need a 180 gr to have 1900f/sec + mv .......2000 f/sec should be plenty.........these are rough figures .from the Lyman Handbook tables.
    Last edited by john.k; 11-28-2022 at 06:36 AM.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

    pworley1's Avatar
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    Even if you are not able to get the required energy out of your ammo, you still have a great little rifle.
    NRA Benefactor Member NRA Golden Eagle

  4. #4
    Boolit Master Baltimoreed's Avatar
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    Had a 357 for a while, a fine rifle. Bought another in 32-20/310 cadet with original sights that i like better. Good luck on your hunt.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Isn’t Dan Wesson brass between the 357 mag and Max.
    Would that be enough?
    Easy ream job and no worries about getting the max around the bend to load it.
    Have you tried to see how long you can load a bullet.
    It may give you a few more grains of powder.
    Nice gun anyway welcome to the martini cadet club.
    Last edited by barrabruce; 11-29-2022 at 08:03 AM.

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master
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    Hmm, I get 1,234 ft-lbs with your 1757 median fps. So that is more than the minimum energy needed. to go to 357 super mag (maximum), a simple re-chamber is all that is needed, barrel wise. Think of an extra long 357 mag. case. 1.610" long. There was a DW case that was 1.4" long, IIRC. I think the case is so long that there is some other work needed to the action,to feed the round, IIRC
    Would have to look at my data, but IIRC, my Ruger #1 in 357 max. pushes a 180 at around 2100fps.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    The last one I did to 357 Max I had to take a bit off the top of the breach bolt to get the cartridge in and out. Good old Dremel tool.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    I'm loading 200 grain cast for my Martini .357 Maximum. 22 grains of 1680 delivers 1900 fps out of my 26" barrel, chronographed, for 1600 ft.lbs. of energy. Squarely in the realm of .35 Remington performance.


    To get our state's minimum muzzle energy requirement out of a .357 Magnum you need to push a 158 grain bullet at minimum 1850fps. That should be easily do-able with your 25" barrel. I would try 4227 for that trick. In fact before I made the discovery that my Martini (which is merely marked ".357") is indeed a Maximum, I thought it was merely a .357 Magnum and I attained those velocities with 158's with 4227 in my initial testing. (Crummy accuracy forced me to do what I should've done in the first place - a chamber casting told the tale and now all is good.)

    I don't understand why a .357 Magnum chamber can't be lengthened to .357 Maximum. It's the same case only longer.

    As for the Maxi not making the bend into the chamber, mine does and as far as I can tell it's unaltered for that purpose. I do have to push the lever the whole way down, beyond merely opening to expose the chamber, to the point where the extractor is fully opened and then the Maxi makes the bend down and into the chamber with ease. It does require two hands - one to hold the lever open as described and the other to insert the cartridge - but after doing it a few times it becomes second nature.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master Rapier's Avatar
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    The Cadet chamber/ bolt make up a curve that a case with bullet must make to chamber. The 357 Super Mag works with spire point or round nose rifle bullets, the problem comes with pistol bullets and the blunt nose,, like the SWC.
    I have two 357 SM Cadets, your barrel is too long to start with. You are reducing velocity, not increasing it, plus the original barrel, unless recut is not .358
    If the firing pin has been reduced in diameter with a busing installed, the action is sound, you have a good barrel, you are good to go for a rifle that is absolutely capable. I shoot 200s and 180s in mine with 16 1/2" barrels.
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  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rapier View Post
    I have two 357 SM Cadets, your barrel is too long to start with. You are reducing velocity, not increasing it
    Depends entirely on the powder being burned. Fast "pistol" powders, yeah, maybe, but slower powders like 1680, H-110, 4759, Lil Gun, etc. that have a progressive burn rate definitely not.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    Martini actions are designed to "hold" the round when its pushed into the chamber .....the Martini Henry does the same ...if you want the round to slip in you pull the lever down............be very careful grinding the trough in the block .....there isnt much to spare .

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

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    Question: Does Maryland have Foot-Pound Police roving the wilderness with chronographs, bullet-pullers, and digital scales?
    WWJMBD?

    Is the mightiness of the pen still relevant after we roll the writing paper into cartridges for a Sharps?

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    No, of course not.

  14. #14
    Boolit Grand Master
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    I have gotten good velocities with MP300. IIRC, bit over 1700fps with a 180 in a 357mag. Marlin w/18" bbl.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master Jedman's Avatar
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    Hope this story is not considered a thread drift but it reminds me of a earlier time that I was confronted by a game warden over the caliber I was using.
    For nearly 20 years I made a yearly hunting trip to WY to hunt mule deer and antelope. As I remember you could use a cartridge that was larger than 35 cal. if it produce over 500 ft. Lbs. of energy or a smaller bore at least 23 cal. but the OAL of the loaded cartridge was 2.00” in length or longer.
    One year on opening day ( Oct. 1 st ) I killed a mule deer and a antelope with a wildcat cartridge I had made in a handi rifle and it was a .303 cal. with a OAL of 1 .960”. I was sitting in my truck while my partner was still hunting and a game warden drove up and wanted to see what we had taken. He checked my 2 animals and they were both properly tagged and asked what I had taken them with ? I showed him the rifle and the cartridge and was curious about it as he had never seen anything like it and I told him I called it a 303 Ohio Boy cartridge. Luckily for me he only had a tape measure with him and he measured the loaded cartridge and even though I knew it was 1/16” short of the limit he said it was OK ! He could see both animals were shot right above the heart and were clean kills so he asked me if he could have one of the cartridges for his collection so I gave him one.
    Then about 10 years later I had made a 45 ACP barrel for a friend of mine for a handi rifle and he had me take it to WY to use if I got a close enough shot to use it. Well again myself and 3 friends were hunting walk in land for antelope and I could see a white car parked about a half a mile from us and suspected it was a game warden watching us . When we drove out the game warden put his hand out of his window to tell us to stop and he came over to our vehicle to check us out. We all had the proper licenses and even had the neighboring ranchers signiture on our licenses showing we also had permission to hunt the property on the other side off the road.
    When he asked to see our guns, I showed him the handi rifle in 45 ACP that I had with me and I was shooting factory 45 super ammo that listed the velocity and energy levels on the box and it listed that the 45 super had something like 460 ft. lbs. of energy from a 5” barreled pistol and I told him out of the 20” barreled rifle that I was using it certainly had more than the 500 ft. lbs. that the law required.
    He didn’t really like it and asked if I had any other rifles to hunt with and I showed him I had 3 other rifles with me and he didn’t make much more of it and let us be on our way.
    About 15 minutes later I sneaked up to a stock tank that was just a old tractor tire with water in it from a windmill and pump and there was a group of antelope there and I shot a big adult doe with horns with the 45 at about 85 yards. I had to shoot her twice as the velocity of the 200 gr. XTP HP was over 1600 fps from the 20” barrel and it exploded on the lung shot I took and didn’t put the doe down so a second finisher to the brain made a quick ending to that.

    That’s just my encounter with using calibers that didn’t quite meet the states minimum requirements and what the game wardens reaction to them was.

    Jedman

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Well,authority.......years ago,Im riding an unlicensed motorbike on the road .....cop pulls me over ,says "take it home.dont let me see you out on the road again".........coupla weeks ago ,local kid is pulled over for a motorized bicycle........massive big deal ,bike is taken away by cop hired rollback,kid is charged with a dozen charges ...unlicensed riding,unlicensed vehicle,defective vehicle .....in fact every defect is noted separately...cops are just ticket writing robots.........whats happened to tolerance and common sense?

  17. #17
    Boolit Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigslug View Post
    Question: Does Maryland have Foot-Pound Police roving the wilderness with chronographs, bullet-pullers, and digital scales?
    ^^^Saved me some writing!^^^
    The unexamined life is not worth living....Socrates
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  18. #18
    Boolit Grand Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by john.k View Post
    Well,authority.......years ago,Im riding an unlicensed motorbike on the road .....cop pulls me over ,says "take it home.dont let me see you out on the road again".........coupla weeks ago ,local kid is pulled over for a motorized bicycle........massive big deal ,bike is taken away by cop hired rollback,kid is charged with a dozen charges ...unlicensed riding,unlicensed vehicle,defective vehicle .....in fact every defect is noted separately...cops are just ticket writing robots.........whats happened to tolerance and common sense?
    The legal system forcing cops to treat everyone the same is what happened. I grew up in a small rural town that had "peace officers" not LE. Open air parties were the norm on Friday and Saturday nights. Underage drinking and driving was also the norm. If you got stopped the cops confiscated your booze and made sure you got home safely UNLESS you acted like a jerk. If you were a jerk you got arrested.

    It was that way for a very long time until the local attorneys kid got stopped and was a major league jerk. He got arrested. Dad raised a major stink. The two local cops almost lost their jobs over the fact they didn't arrest several other kids leaving the same party. Those kids weren't jerks to the cops. I know this since I was there. After that everyone was treated the same and that was with ZERO tolerance.
    2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. - "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."

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  19. #19
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dieselhorses View Post
    ^^^Saved me some writing!^^^
    Most states I'm aware of have minimum cartridge requirements. Some are quite liberal, others are more restrictive. Of course our game wardens don't traipse around with the accouterments needed to verify adherence to the law. But they aren't idiots either and if, say, you're deer hunting with a .25-20 rifle they'll know you're flaunting the rules - unless you have a good story, and they believe you (see above anecdotes). If it's borderline they'll take you at your word, at least that was so in my experience.

    For years I hunted with a Savage .22 High Power lever gun. Factory ballistics, on paper, show it to barely meet the 1200 ft lbs muzzle energy requirement. Twice I was stopped and checked while hunting on public land, and twice I was queried about my rifle/cartridge combo, mainly out of curiosity was my impression. When I explained that the cartridge can be thought of as a .223 loaded with 70 grain bullets, ballistically, they were appeased and we went on to talk about other stuff.

    Another time while goose hunting on the Eastern Shore we were checked by a warden while we were in our pit blind. I use a vintage LC Smith shotgun and shoot relatively light handloads made with Bismuth shot, in W-W AA target hulls**. He was surprised to see my "target loads" and grew suspicious that I was hunting with lead since it failed "the magnet test" for steel shot. (Yes, he had a magnet in his pocket.) I patiently explained my process and he bought it. I offered him a shell to take with him and have analyzed to verify my claim, and he declined.

    ** 1 1/8 oz. #2 Bismuth at 1200fps has plenty moxie to knock Canada Geese for a loop, over decoys.

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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