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Discussion Starter #1
Friend of mine sent me an email regarding a Henry level action in 38/357. He loves his 357 revolver. He asked me does the barrel length 28" change velocity or round compared to 6" revolver. I told him I'd check with you folks because I really don't know.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
He was asking does the barrel length make any difference in velocity with standard loads.. After thinking about I would guess it doesn't make any difference.
 

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Yes, they will shoot at a higher velocity, but 28” is probably past the point of diminishing returns. Most 357mag rifles have a 16”-20” barrel.
 

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It does make a difference - up to a point. 28" is more of a black powder barrel length. As austinjoe13 said, there is a point where bullet friction is subtracting whatever was gained by the longer barrel.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I rechecked his email and he talked about 1873 Winchester w/24" barrel and a Henry Big boy w/20" barrel. K75 RT I'll try to send your chart to him. Did you see part of my Enfield collection under Military firearms, New to Enfields page 3?
 

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K75 RT I'll try to send your chart to him. Did you see part of my Enfield collection under Military firearms, New o Enfields page 3?
No Sir, I have not...will have to see in the AM
 

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That Ballistics by the inch chart is pretty close. We have 357 levers in 16, 18 and 20 inch barrels, we have revolvers in 2.5 3, 4, and 6.5 inches. I have measured a lot of loads and agree with their numbers.

Paco Kelly is known as the father/guru of hunting with the 357 lever guns. The best numbers meaning the most testing will be in the Rossi forum or on leverguns.com. He shows about 600-700 fps difference between a 6 inch barrel and a 20 inch one with hot loads. If you look at the Ballistics by the Inch Chart it shows that to be about 750-800 foot pounds in the 6 inch pistol and over 1,200 foot pounds in the rifle. Basically doubles the hunting range from about 75 yards to 150 yards.
357 Magnum and the Literature (leverguns.com)

There is a problem with the 28 inch barrel because the fairly small case size does not give enough room for the powder to burn much beyond about 20 inches, so usually the bullet will slow down after about 20 inches. They have tried to use the 180 grain pointed bullets and single loading them for hunting, but they do not do any better than the 140 grain lever evolution rounds, just not enough case capacity and pressure allowed to move the bullet much beyond 20 inches, and you may need a different twist with those longer bullets.

Any 158 grain 357 bullet will work on deer to about 125 yards, many claim 150 but the powder and trajectory are both dropping fast at that range.It drops 5.5 inches at 150 and about 550 foot pounds, most folks say you need 800 foot pounds at the animal for a grown deer.

They say they are not that accurate, but my Marlin scoped will shoot 1.5 inches at 100 yards, but only with the 125 grain loads. FWIW Everybody should own a 357 lever gun. And for comparison. A 357 rifle has about the same power at the muzzle as a hot 44 magnum pistol.

Drag Function: G1
Ballistic Coefficient: 0.21
Bullet Weight: 158 gr
Initial Velocity: 1700 fps
Sight Height : 1.5 in
Shooting Angle: 0°
Wind Speed: 10 mph
Wind Angle: 90°
Zero Range: 100 yd
Chart Range: 1000 yd
Maximum Range: 2939 yd
Step Size: 25 yd
International Standard Atmosphere
Altitude: Sea Level (0 ft)
Barometric Pressure: 29.92 Hg
Temperature: 59° F
Relative Humidity: 50%
Speed of Sound: 1116 fps

RangeElevationElevationElevationWindageWindageWindageTimeEnergyVel[x+y]
(yd)(in)(MOA)(MIL)(in)(MOA)(MIL)(s)(ft.lbf)(ft/s)
0-1.500.000.000.050.000.000.0010141700
250.22-0.83-0.240.250.930.270.059211620
501.10-2.09-0.610.831.590.460.098361543
751.06-1.35-0.391.832.330.680.147591471
1000.02-0.020.003.273.120.910.206891401
125-2.131.630.475.153.931.140.256271337
150-5.503.501.027.504.771.390.315721276
175-10.20
 

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Paco isn't on the Rossi forum.
I'm a founding member of that forum and have never seen him there.
 

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Paco isn't on the Rossi forum.
I'm a founding member of that forum and have never seen him there.
I did not say that, here is what I said: The best numbers meaning the most testing will be in the Rossi forum or on leverguns.com

I was just saying that the best data would be on the Rossi forum or on leverguns.com. I was a member over there on and off for years and just came back in 2017. I see you just posted over there today. Learned most of what I know about lever gun loads over there. I am a 454 guy, although have 357s too. Just read the article on the 454 for grizzley. I change forums now and again depending on what my interest is today.
 

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Asking about shooting .357's out of a carbine vs. A handgun?

Same with .38 specials?

Lots of things affect velocity.
Demensions of bore constriction, rifling type and depth.
I guess harmonics plays into certain type catridge, primer, powder, bullet combos.
Take a .22Lr in a bolt action Marlin glenfield model 10 vs. Ruger 10/22.
Same cartridges the longer barrel marlin will shoot further, on praire dogs the marlin still lob rounds at maximum range, the ruger wont come close, no matter how much you hold over, even holding the bolt closed on firing 10/22 only gains me about 15 feet and still 50 yards short of where the Marlinds rounds were poping prairie dogs.

.22 magnum of a taurus 72, 16" carbine vs a Savage Stevens model 30 favorite w 21" barrel.
The taurus 16 inch will hold tighter groups and will cast the bullet further than the longer barreled Savage.

Now take that Marlin glenfield model 10 w 22" barrel vs. Keystone Arms Crickett rifle 16".
The Crickett will trounce the Marlin with the same box ammo in distance and group size.
 

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Asking about shooting .357's out of a carbine vs. A handgun?

Same with .38 specials?

Lots of things affect velocity.
Demensions of bore constriction, rifling type and depth.
I guess harmonics plays into certain type catridge, primer, powder, bullet combos.
Take a .22Lr in a bolt action Marlin glenfield model 10 vs. Ruger 10/22.
Same cartridges the longer barrel marlin will shoot further, on praire dogs the marlin still lob rounds at maximum range, the ruger wont come close, no matter how much you hold over, even holding the bolt closed on firing 10/22 only gains me about 15 feet and still 50 yards short of where the Marlinds rounds were poping prairie dogs.

.22 magnum of a taurus 72, 16" carbine vs a Savage Stevens model 30 favorite w 21" barrel.
The taurus 16 inch will hold tighter groups and will cast the bullet further than the longer barreled Savage.

Now take that Marlin glenfield model 10 w 22" barrel vs. Keystone Arms Crickett rifle 16".
The Crickett will trounce the Marlin with the same box ammo in distance and group size.
The 357 rifles and carbines are a pretty easy caliber really because they started with the hottest powders they could find for the long barrel pistol. Back in the day much ammo was rated based on a 10 inch test barrel or something nuts like that. Which was pretty accurate if you had a contender or a 8 and 3/8 SW. Also much of the ammo in the early 70 was loaded very not. Norma sold a 158 grain lead bullet that would get 1,500 fps from my 4 inch Ruger Security 6. One box of ammo and the barrel was full of lead.

So, for maybe 50 years the factory ammo was loaded with great powder like H110, W296, or 2400. Few new powders today do any better. The second thing they found is that in a carbine,( I have them in 16, 18 and 20 inch barrels) that the exact loads that were good for the 10 inch test barrels were great for the longer carbines and whatever load was good for the 10 inch test barrel was also about as fast as you could get a 4 inch revolver. Most of the new powders do not improve on that. That is contrary to what happens in a bottleneck round where different powders make a lot of difference with barrel length. So, if you load a hot 110 grain load for your snub nose it will be a great load for your carbine.

I think that is probably also true for the 41 and 44 mag. But not so for everything. A lighter load like say a 38 special, you can play around with powders and create a better load for short barrels vs. longer barrels with those less powerful powders.. But the beauty for the 357 is just develop the best (most accurate) load for your rifle and then use it in the handgun. You do the rifle load first because the 100-150 yard accuracy would automatically be accurate at closer ranges. But once you find those loads, you are good to go. I load 3 loads, a 158 grain wadcutter in a 357 case, a 158 grain hollow point and a 125 grain hollow point, which goes over 2,000 fps and gets 1.5 inch groups. I also will load a 38 wadcutter for 38 pistols but I do not want it in the 357s. I use lube and gas checks but will be going to powder coat. The 357 lead bullet will go about 1,300 fps and have a trajectory like a 22 lr. If you try to shoot 38 level wad cutters in the carbine your trajectory goes bad.

Everybody should own a 357 carbine. It can solve lots of problems and they are fun. .
 

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Correction. My comment above was that my 357 cast load was 1,300 fps. That is from a handgun with a 6.5 inch barrel, in the 20 inch barrel it is about 1,500 fps and has a trajectory that is dead on at 100 and only 3 inches low at 125 and still has over 500 foot pounds ( the load is 7 grains of Unique and the 158 grain cast or cast semi wadcutter or HP, I have both.. Aiming for the hairline, it is still good for a coyote at about 135 yards. Most people want that practical application with the 357 lever gun and a cast bullet you can load for about 10 cents per. In a pinch you can kill a deer or hog with 500 foot pounds and it makes an excellent defense round. The recoil and noise is nill.

Many people want to shoot 38 special wadcutters in them. I do not. Because in the rifle they only go about 1,000 fps and has a trajectory more like a 22lr so not too good much beyond that 75 -80 yard range and has less than 300 ft pounds. So, I load the rounds for the rifle hotter which makes the lever gun pretty good out to 125 for small stuff.

I added this because many folks like the idea of a one caliber with broad application and perhaps the survival guns, 357 pistol and rifle. Kind of a cult thang. I joined up in 1981 with my first Marlin.

Sheriff Jim Wilson, John Taffin, Bart Skelton, Paco Kelley and others have commented that if you could only have one rifle, the 357 lever gun would be it. And of course top loads with hot powders makes it well above 44 mag handgun power.

Buffalo Bore claims they can get over 1,600 foot pounds in the 357 Marlin with the 158 grain bullet. Here is their data.
18.5-inch Marlin 1894

a. Item 19A/20-180gr. Hard Cast = 1851 fps
b. Item 19B/20-170gr. JHC = 1860 fps
c. Item 19C/20-158gr. Jacketed Hollow Point = 2153 fps---- Can you believe this?!!!
d. Item 19D/20-125gr. Jacketed Hollow Point = 2298 fps---- Or this?!!!

So, to the OP, tell your buddy he will never regret buying the 357 lever in any brand and any barrel length. They all work, just tailor the load to the task. And for animal defense purposes, the 357 lever gun can generate about 1,600 foot pounds at the muzzle with 180 grain bullets, a 10mm with 180 grain bullets can only get about 800 foot pounds at the muzzle,, so plenty power for those issues.

Everyone should own a lever action 357.
 
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