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my question concerns ammo for lever action, but could be extended to handguns.
The minimum o.a.l. for .357 mag with 180 gr. bullets in a lyman manual is 1.585 inches. I have a cast mould that gives me very accurate bullets in my rossi lever action carbine. the problem is, when I crimp the brass in the groove of the bullet, as i think i should do in a tubular mag, o.a.l. shrinks to 1.555 inches. I use a load of 14.5 grains of H110. could I go to the max load of 15 grains, since there is no sign of hi pressures(the fired primers look like those of a .38 spl.)? Should I back off? thanks.
 

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I would strongly caution use of short OAL cartridges. Seating the bullet deeper than spec'd can make pressures skyrocket very quickly. You may be able to get a full 15 grains in without problems, but then again you may not with potentially dangerous results. Caution is the watchword. Work-up your loads very, very slowly above the 14.5 grain plateau. One tenth of a grain at a time. Use new or once fired brass and check the case heads with a caliper for excessive expansion. Reading primers is somewhat akin to voodoo. I've had handloads look great with nice rounded primers, then BOOM!.  A smidge more powder and they pierce. Be careful.





(Edited by Bill Lester at 8<!--emo&:0--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wow.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=':0'><!--endemo-->8 am on Aug. 13, 2001)
 
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