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Viceroy 馃煩馃煩馃煩
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Here's the background story... Got my nice, new SP101 Wiley Clapp and it's a fantastic gun. Beautiful. Easy to shoot. Accurate. It's my new "kit gun" that will come along fishing, camping or mountain biking. As posted here earlier, the only "problem" is that it hits high for me with 125 grain loads and even more so with 158. Maybe it's OK for people who like a "six o'clock" sight picture but I learned to shoot with a "hunter's" sight pic.

Well, OK. Really no big deal because it's dead on with Hornady 110 grain +p .38 specials which is what I'll keep in it most of the time. I also bought a box of 110 grain Winchester .357 magnums and was planning on trying a few of those too. I do not reload.

Currently I live in an area where there are no big toothy wild animals. Maybe a coyote or badger. Supposedly there are now a few cougars but I guess you've got to try really hard to even see one. Again, no problem that's currently worth swapping out the dovetail front sight for a taller one (Novak's wants $100, shipped), but I can always do that some time in the future if / when I live in a different zip code with different critter considerations.

Like I said, that's all background. This is not a question about proper bullet selection, or proper sight picture, etc.

What I am curious about is: Since my gun is basically "sighted in" for 110 grain projectiles, exactly how worried I should be about "erosion" and flame cutting with a handful of 110 grain 357 magnums with today's factory loads? Keep in mind I probably will only shoot a box or two of magnums a year. Though it might see a lot of carry miles, this won't be a high volume gun. When I feel like shooting at the range I'm much more inclined to grab my 9mm. When I feel like plinking at tin cans outdoors I'm much more inclined to grab a .22.

I have searched through the forum and other sites online including some of Iowegan's posts, and think I understand the reasons why light .357 bullets erode and cut more. However, the most "recent" threads I've found actually date back several years, and I wonder if the factory loads are the same now as then. The two local stores that have 110 loads carry Winchester and Remington loads, and the factory velocity specs on them seem considerably slower (~1290 fps) than the specs on the 125 grain loads.

Thus I was kinda wondering if the larger ammo companies had dialed back their 110 grain loadings, and if the risk of 110 factory ammo is still the same as some of the advice and comments I see dating back five or ten years or more.

If I only shoot 500 to 1000 magnum rounds out of this thing over the next decade, will I even see any effect at all?
 

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I can't answer your questions directly but I will say this. Try shooting a few boxes of the 357 Magnum 110 grain loads and see if it starts cutting the top strap. If you see undue top strap wear, stop using it while it is only a cosmetic and not a structural problem.

I haven't heard of ammo manufacturers throttling back 110 grain loads.

Here's a thread that talks about point of aim and impact that might also give you some ideas. I hope it helps.

http://rugerforum.net/ruger-double-action/128121-questions-about-sighting-fixed-sight-gp-100-a.html
 

Viceroy 馃煩馃煩馃煩
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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. Yes I'd seen that thread. Sight picture and hold are not the issue.

I could adopt "sight picture #1" from that thread, or I could spend $100 on a taller sight, but I'm focusing on the issue of flame cutting and erosion. Just trying to get a feel for whether, with today's factory loads, people are talking about something that becomes a problem or even noticeable in 100 rounds, or 1,000 or 10,000.

Or if the answer is "YMMV" I'm ok with that too.
 

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With the investment in $$$ you have for your Ruger SP101WC .357 why take the chance with shooting either 110 grain or 125 grain .357's to me I guess I would shoot this load occasionally but not a steady diet of them. Yes its a .357 Mag. its too bad your SP101 isn't more regulated with the 158 grain .357/.38Special loading. To me shooting .357's in a SP101 is just plain to much recoil to my hands. I feel that there are way way too many very good loadings in .38 Special especially the +p loads. Now I know that there are standard pressure .38 Special loads and the +p stuff. Is there regular pressure .357 magnum loads out there???? To me the main issue from your description of use is to get a dependable load that hits POA/POI if you are dead on with .38 Special +P 110 grains up your loading to .38 Special +p 125-135grain Gold Dots. This might give you a bit higher foot pounds of energy. But good questions you have asked sure there will be many different opinions good luck!!!
 

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I have a sp 101 for 15 years and I have shot several thousand 125s 357s and a few hundred 110s and no flame cutting.
 

Viceroy 馃煩馃煩馃煩
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Discussion Starter #7
I would stay away from a steady diet of 110s but a few shouldn't be that harmful. Here's a good synopsis with some links to more:
http://rugerforum.net/reloading/137601-flame-cutting-curse.html#post1847890
Thanks!! I actually hadn't discovered that thread and it led me to another one that I hadn't found or read.

I think it pretty much answers all my questions! I probably don't need to be freaked out about shooting up the ~100 rounds of 110 grain ammunition I have. But once that's used up, I'll probably plunk down a C-note on a custom Novak front sight and go back to my old 158 grain favorites.
 

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I don't think the Winchester 110's are loaded hot, i have a couple boxes of them and have shot a few in my SP101 and they seem to be more like hot 38's.
 

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I have a sp 101 for 15 years and I have shot several thousand 125s 357s and a few hundred 110s and no flame cutting.
+1. I've shot thousands of rounds of 125 38spl+p and hundreds of rounds of 110 357 with no signs of flame cutting. I find the 125s and 110s more controllable, thus more accurate. For SD, I use 125 38spl+p.
 
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