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.32 S&W Long questions

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by PaulB47, Jun 19, 2016.

  1. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    Got my hands on my latest toy, a Ruger SP101 in .327 Fed Magnum, the 4" version. At the same time I got a bunch of used .32 S&W Long cases from the shop that handled the transfer, nice and cheap.

    Been looking at the Hodgdon site for loads. It seems something around 12,000 cup is about the limit for the cartridge. That translates into about 800fps.

    I was wondering about boosting that a bit, given that I don't intend to shoot my loads in any hundred year old guns. Does anyone have an opinion on that? I realize this brass is not going to be as strong as the .327 Fed Mag stuff (which I also have on order), but I'm not talking about doubling the velocity either. Maybe an extra 100fps so the Hornady 85gr XTP has a chance to expand, with a bit of margin, yet it's still easy to shoot. The recommended velocity range for this bullet is 750 to 1550 fps.

    I will also make a .327 heavy defense load with the 100gr XTPs, but it probably won't be too much fun to shoot.

    Of course it is a question whether my dies in .32 H&R will even fully seat a bullet or crimp the .32 S&W Long case...

    I have to say, this cartridge takes the cake in the "cute" department, heh.
     
  2. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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    Lee data. Speer book states SAAMI max is 12,000psi

    32 sw long 001.jpg
     
  3. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    Huh, interesting that page has data that is "high pressure use only in modern match handguns". I wonder if that is 12000 psi also? Too bad that data uses such unusual powder.
     
  4. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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  5. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    I've seen that handloads.com page. The other one, stevespages, must not be standard html because it doesn't display on my browser, even if I enable scripts.

    I have noticed a bit here and there that people talk about 15,000 psi being a sort of +P load for this cartridge. Unfortunately all the old data is in CUP so it is hard to translate.

    I guess I will just try a modest load for these cases and work up slowly, using Bullseye powder. I've got some of those Ranier plated bullets. My attempt at slugging the barrel was questionable, but it looks like the throats were .314 while the bore (including contriction) is .312.

    Of course my eyes are getting so bad maybe it doesn't matter how accurate the load is. (sigh) If I had to survive on bunnies with this gun I'd probably starve.
     
  6. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    OK, I tried some loads. Basically I was following the Hodgdon data although as usual you can never get everything the same. I used the 100gr plated hollow point Ranier bullet, seated to an overall length of 1.175" and using Titegroup powder and CCI 500 primer.

    1.8gr, 1.9gr, 2.0gr and (higher than their top load) 2.1gr. The speeds were unknown(chrono did not register), 544, 584 and 598. The first 3 cases were very smoky, the last showed evidence of sealing the chamber. Further evidence was the split along the side of the case. :eek:

    So I have zero loads between the two extremes of smoking the cases and splitting them. Cool. :rolleyes:

    I can't explain the low velocities. It's the Ruger with the 4" barrel. The cyl gap looks like .005, or .006 if I pull back the cylinder hard.

    I had found a couple other split cases in the bag of .32 S&W Long cases. Maybe this bag was not such a good deal after all. Maybe they need annealing. Who knows how old they are. I was using the PMC ones so they can't be from the 1800s!

    Maybe I should just set them up on the shelf and use my 327 Mag cases. If I want plinking/small game loads I can do the usual thing for light loads, deep seating bullets, etc. but do it in the magnum cases. Then I don't have to worry about the dirty chamber problem either.
     
  7. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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    If you have a hard time finding 327 cases maybe keep an eye out for 32 mag cases for plinking loads.
     
  8. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    Well, I tried a starting load, 12.2gr of 296 under a Hornady XTP 100gr. According to Hodgdon this is 1419fps out of a 5" barrel. My 4" gun got only 1258fps. As with the above loads, it is very slow. Maybe that's one of the reasons this gun ended up on Armslist (sigh).
     
  9. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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    I assume you used magnum primers per the load data. That extra inch of barrel can and will make a difference on fps due to burning fully or at least more so in that extra inch. This is the reason they make reduced loads for snubbies even in 22mag.
     
  10. Pandaz3

    Pandaz3 Cornelius, Oregon NRA Lifetime Member Platinum Supporter Gold Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I am not a re-loader so don't have a lot to contribute. I have shot my Ruger LCR 327 with American Eagle 100 Grain 327 Magnum loads. It is advertised on the box as having 1500 FPS and 500 pounds at the muzzle (barrel length not stated). I had a solid custom grip on the gun, I shot six rounds (a full cylinder) and said "That's enough", punishing. I have changed grips.
    I also shot a full box of Black Hills 32 H&R Magnum 90 Grain FPL that their website claims this Cowboy action ammunition to be 750 FPS at the muzzle. 22 Magnum kicks a lot harder.
    I have a shorter lighter gun than you do, but I think 32 H&R Magnum for fun and 327 Federal Magnum for work.
     
  11. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    OK, an update (the following using .327 Fed Mag cases). I tried Lil'Gun, a starting load. Still had very low velocity. Then for some reason I tried a full load and got the velocity expected on the Hodgdon site. :confused: Then I tried Titegroup, and with both a starting load and a near max load, got what Hodgdon predicted.

    I am not sure what is going on here, but suspect multiple factors:

    1) Heat from sunlight makes the operation of my chrono kinda iffy.
    2) Sunlight into the sensors?
    3) Slow powders might not burn completely with light loads?
    4) Slow powders with light loads might have large velocity variations, and my small sample size did not show that, and I just got stuck with a slow one.

    Anyway now I am happy. I got 1207fps with that near max Titegroup load, using the 100gr XTP, which is just above the middle of their preferred velocity range of 750-1550 fps. And it is much more pleasant to shoot than the slow powder loads, and no doubt has much less flash and blast than them. So that will be my defense load. Yes I could get 200fps more out of it with the slow powders, but who needs the drama? :)
     
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