A Kimber K6s Christmas: The Importance of Safe Reloading Practices

| December 24, 2020 | 5 Comments

I wanted to thank all the range fans for the support and encouragement you all have shown me over the past year. This year has been a rather difficult year for everyone, a year we all want to forget. I want all of you to know I appreciate you and wish you all a very Merry Christmas you deserve it, and what better way to do that than on the range doing a little data gathering. 

The Importance of Safe Reloading Practices

I spent some time in the reloading lair dissecting Federal HST 130gr 38 special +p loads. This video is a great testament to how important reloading manuals truly are. Most factory loads aren’t using canister powder that you can purchase on the open market. Though after examining the powder, of which I did not seem to have. I determined this was some sort of ball powder. I implemented the ball powder I had on hand W231 for my reloads. I validated the recipe I would use with Quickload software taking all measurements of the bullet, COAL, Case H20 Capacity, Fired Case Length and created my own custom load. This load according to Quickload should achieve about 915fps out of a 4inch barrel. I expected for it to be a little less than that. WOW to my surprise did it turn in so much more.

Federal HST 130Gr   Kimber K6S 2in   Kimber K6s 3in   Kimber K6s 4in
    824   831   876
    784   882   878
    800   878   855
    796   849   869
    800   896   900
Avg Velocity   800   867   875
MRG Reloads   Kimber K6S 2in   Kimber K6s 3in   Kimber K6s 4in
    1017   1099   1150
    1054   1148   1108
    1054   1108   1095
    1025   1089   1077
        1070   1053
Avg Velocity   1037   1102   1096
















I also studied the Speer Manual #14 and Hornady Manual #10 though nothing in these manuals were even close to what I was doing. The data gathered from these sources gave me confidence, the Quickload data was safe. Though this little mad experiment shows the importance of not using loads on the internet as atmospheric conditions even play a part in pressure. You should always start low and work your way up watching for signs of pressure. Flat Primers, Cratered Primers, Sticky Extraction, Case Neck Split, Case Web Ballooning or Expansion. Though not a complete list these visual inspections will get you close. Though the ultimate tool for me is a Chronograph. Am I getting more velocity than I expect? As I did in this test.

Any reloading information you find on this page is not to be used as it did not come from a reloading manual and is unsafe.

Though the information below proved safe for me today with these specific revolvers. I will be reducing these loads even though I had no signs of pressure at all. 

Winchester 231 4.1gr, Winchester Small Pistol Primer, Federal 130gr HST, Mixed 38Special Cases 1.155, COAL 1.189

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5 Comments on "A Kimber K6s Christmas: The Importance of Safe Reloading Practices"

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  1. Paul Abshire says:

    I am surprised that the difference between the 4 and 3 inch was minimal. I am going chrono my ruger lcrx 3 inch amd my sp101 4 inch 357/38. I just picked up the lcrx amd it jas to go back as cylinder gap out of spec. Cant wait together it back to test the two guns. The 4 inch does make shooting 357 much more pleasurable.

    Great stuff. Thanks for your work and merry Christmas .

  2. Paul Abshire says:

    First thanks for all your good work.

    It was interesting that the 3 and 4 inch were that close. I need to chrono my sp101 4 inch and lcrx 3 inch when it gets back from ruger.
    The 4 inch does make shooting 357 more pleasurable.

    Merry Christmas

  3. charles irby says:

    Very nice accuracy out there in the cold Eli … I am jealous of your ability to show your empirical data with such clarity.
    I would like to have seen the numbers from Quick Loads…

    Merry Christmas, Semper Fi

  4. jo poe says:

    why cut it down? it is a great load as 38spl is usually very weak. this will get the job done for sure. i like it

  5. Paul Abshire says:

    Sorry for the double post. I agree why download keep it as is. Looks like a great load provided it performs in gel with denim and doesn’t over penetrate. If I remember correctly the hst rounds were barely penetrating to FBI standards.
    Cant wait for gel tests.

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