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Lee Juras of SuperVel fame made a name for himself and his company by loading slightly undersized bullets into cartridges and pumping up the volume so that his significantly higher velocities didn't result in significantly higher pressures. The results worked pretty well. Well, years ago when I was hand loading I took a page from his book and started loading 9mm bullets (0.355") into .38 and .357 (0.357") rounds. I used Sierra JHP bullets. The result was a pretty hot round that worked well and didn't exhibit any symptoms of high pressures, and would shoot into the black from both my 4" and 2" revolvers with no problem. I'm sure I'll draw critics, but it might be something for those of you who are still rolling your own to consider.
 

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Interesting idea, Ektarr, thanks for sharing. Seems as though it should work well.
 

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Lee Juras of SuperVel fame made a name for himself and his company by loading slightly undersized bullets into cartridges and pumping up the volume so that his significantly higher velocities didn't result in significantly higher pressures. The results worked pretty well. Well, years ago when I was hand loading I took a page from his book and started loading 9mm bullets (0.355") into .38 and .357 (0.357") rounds. I used Sierra JHP bullets. The result was a pretty hot round that worked well and didn't exhibit any symptoms of high pressures, and would shoot into the black from both my 4" and 2" revolvers with no problem. I'm sure I'll draw critics, but it might be something for those of you who are still rolling your own to consider.
I don’t think Super Vel concept used undersized bullets, but bullets lighter in weight....or maybe he did.
Undersized bullets are not going to reduce pressure, but they will require more crimp, and reduce case life all the while giving poorer accuracy.
 

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You may be right, G. I understood them to be light, also (I used the Sierra 115gr.JHP) but undersized as well. In any case, the result worked very well for me, both in performance and accuracy, in both my 4" Mdl 19 and my 2" Mdl. 38. I didn't experience any of the crimping problems you anticipate but I don't remember now -- some 45 years later -- exactly which crimp I was using, roll or taper.
 

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@Ektarr , The result was a pretty hot round that worked well and didn't exhibit any symptoms of high pressures, and would shoot into the black from both my 4" and 2"

Can you elaborate, how big of a group are you getting ?
 
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I'm confused...or in the twilight zone!

How is this a Forum News, Feedback, Problems & Comments item?

Are we having issues reloading the forum pages??? Last I looked you could load a 45 ACP page with 9mm thread comments and everything worked just fine. No special crimp needed.

Oh no....WHAT exactly have you guys been putting in that you had to roll your own?

:LOL::D:ROFLMAO:o_O
 

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What barrel length were you using? What bullets? What powder? And what velocities were you averaging?
 

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You may be right, G. I understood them to be light, also (I used the Sierra 115gr.JHP) but undersized as well. In any case, the result worked very well for me, both in performance and accuracy, in both my 4" Mdl 19 and my 2" Mdl. 38. I didn't experience any of the crimping problems you anticipate but I don't remember now -- some 45 years later -- exactly which crimp I was using, roll or taper.
I was a fairly young lad back in the Super Vel days, so I may not be completely in the right about what bullet size Lee used.

I can tell you, that he had a good idea and was ahead of his time, but unfortunately the bullets were not there yet.
Today, with the more modern structure of bullets like the XTP or Noslers, a light weight bullet can indeed be driven hard and still hold together and penetrate well.
If you like light and fast from a 38 spl, but don’t like the shooting characteristics of a magnum load, you can roll some of your own with the modern light for caliber offerings from the above mentioned, and get them going pretty good with Unique powder.....or you can venture in to 38/44 territory with 2400, although I think it’s a point in diminishing returns.

Probably best with anything under a 4 inch 38, is just to stick with a simple solid lswc.
 

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I never tried Super Vel bullets. But is the idea that an undersize bullet bleeds pressure around the bullet? or that it is just undersize enough that the bullet is not being swaged through the rifling ? [ making less resistance going down bore?].
I could see both of those scenario's working but also leaving a lot of fouling in the bore.
I could see the bullets only being accurate at shorter ranges. DR
 

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I never tried Super Vel bullets. But is the idea that an undersize bullet bleeds pressure around the bullet? or that it is just undersize enough that the bullet is not being swaged through the rifling ? [ making less resistance going down bore?].
I could see both of those scenario's working but also leaving a lot of fouling in the bore.
I could see the bullets only being accurate at shorter ranges. DR
I also have to wonder if the bleed off of gas from the cylinder gap doesn’t make it a moot point to begin with....
 
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You may be right, G. I understood them to be light, also (I used the Sierra 115gr.JHP) but undersized as well. In any case, the result worked very well for me, both in performance and accuracy, in both my 4" Mdl 19 and my 2" Mdl. 38. I didn't experience any of the crimping problems you anticipate but I don't remember now -- some 45 years later -- exactly which crimp I was using, roll or taper.
Did you slug your barrel? That is the only way to be sure. A .355 jacketed bullet will not seal in a .357 bore resulting in lower velocity and poor accuracy. The old super vel loads I have a very accurate. if I get around to it I will dig out a box and mic the bullets.
 

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Hmm, brings to mind the Blackhawk convertible. I have never owned or shot one. I have had discussions with folks on this forum about the 357/9mm convertible. Two questions i asked was:
1. Did the 9mm suffer velocity loss due to the cylinder gap. The answer was no. That may be due to the slightly larger diameter barrel producing slightly resistance.

2. Did accuracy suffer. The answer was no. Maybe due to the slightly larger diameter was still plenty for the bullet to engage the rifling and for an adequate seal.
 
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Good thinking!

As for "symptoms of high pressures," you may see pre-catastrophic failure before the firearm undergoes catastrophic failure, but there's no givens.

If you know the pressures of both rounds in their respective firearms, along with basic physics such as mass, pressure and acceleration curves, you can calculate the probable pressures for your cross-firearm rounds. You may even find you have significant room for more powder. Do, however, cross-check this approach with an expert, as getting it wrong could result in loss of firearm, fingers, eyesight...

Even then, I wouldn't get within 70% of the hottest pressures the firearm is known to handle, as gunpowder has a funny way of burning much faster under even slightly higher pressure, which more or less undermines this approach if the pressures ever exceed factory at any point in the powder combustion and round acceleration process.
 
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