357 Herrett

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tdoyka posted this 23 November 2022



i was going to with the 45 Colt in a 10" Contender barrel (either Bullberry, MGM or SSK) to hunt deer with next year. my dad (RIP) had a friend back in the '70s (it might have been in the early '80s) that had a TC Contender in 30 Herrett and he luved it. i was "thinkin":eek: that a 357 Rem Maximum would be great in a 10" barrel and then it hit me, 357 Herrett. i have about 400 pieces of 30-30 Starline brass (100pcs are for the 35/30-30) and i reform brass ('06 to the 7x57, 8x57, 9.3x57, 7.65x53...), which can be quite annoying, but i like it .the place i hunt deer is sorta close up, 60ish and under and i think i'll go with 2x scope. just like the 45 Colt, it will be a cast boolit only gun. i'll probably just size the 200gr RCBS fn gc to .359", but maybe i'll want something different, like a 180gr fn gc.

ok, now i am ready for comments and the Herrett and tell me that i need a 45 Colt or a 357 Rem Maximum.  

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gemihur posted this 2 weeks ago

Life is constantly reminding us of chores undone. I take great joy in building furniture for my contenders and now my encore.

Bellm and Ackley are my heroes. But David White was a strong contributor to the modifications of many of my barrels and I regretfully acknowledge his recent passing. A good gunsmith is a rare commodity and he was not only that but a good and decent man whose faith was a big part of who he was. He will sorely be missed.

Gary Reeder is another one that doesn't mind breaking some rules. I've got a 30 Raptor of his kinda like the old 30 Apache but uses 204 Ruger brass and shoots like a dream!

Contender with 30 Raptor and my furniture

Thanks,

Jimmy

I shoot, therefore I am

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mashburn posted this 07 March 2024

Hello again gemihur,

Again, I'm not sure, but I am pretty sure that Jim is PO's son-in-law. I met Jim in the late 80's, and at that time, his wife had cancer, and they had no insurance. He had his tools and equipment in storage and was working for someone up in Northeast Oklahoma. I tried contacting him, at his place of employment, and was told that his wife beat her cancer, and they were no longer in that area.

You are correct when you talk about his achievements, he is one sharp man, when it comes to firearms, cartridges and other firearm related areas. I visited with him for about 3 hours and was very impressed. We struck up a friendship during that one visit.

Before, I just now read your post, I had been out in my shop doing some much needed cleaning chores and I found a contender forearm blank that I had bought from him during our visit. I never have fit it to a contender barrel. Your information is making me want to do some research on him and PO.

I've been a Mashburn Arms fan most of my adult life, mainly because he grew up in my area and I used to see him occasionally, thanks for your information.

Mashburn 

David a. Cogburn

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gemihur posted this 06 March 2024

Well, That explains a lot!

Thanks for the insight into the lineage.

I use an awful lot of Ackley shoulders in my range of reloading the wildcats in my collection.

Did you know that Wes Ugalde utilized Ackley shoulders in all of the TCU cartridges?

Mike was an advocate of improving the 222 Rem Mag to achieve nearly the 22-250 performance in thecontender.

I'm fascinated by all of them.

Thanks again.

I shoot, therefore I am

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mashburn posted this 04 March 2024

Hello gemifur

I think, that Mike Bellm is PO Ackley's son-in-law, but I may be wrong. I hope there is someone on the forum that knows for sure.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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gemihur posted this 03 March 2024

Thank you, gentlemen.

Mike is the last word on contenders.

I've recently become immersed in the writings of Ackley and have made note of a Dennis Bellm.

I'm thinking that's Mike, who took over Ackley's shop.

Some very interesting info there.

I shoot, therefore I am

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mashburn posted this 02 March 2024

I guess that is a dig on me. I definitely know what a snap fit is, and so does Mike Bellm, who is the man I was referring to in my post.

Mashburn

 

David a. Cogburn

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mashburn posted this 02 March 2024

Hello Hornet,

Mike Bellm is the man that I was referring to in my post, that I described as, someone who would become famous in the contender scene, in years to come. That was many years ago. Thanks for that notation in your post.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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Bud Hyett posted this 01 March 2024

The problem with that is that small variations in the exact shoulder location could result in excessive interference and create variations in the locking bolt engagement which could prevent the hammer block from moving out of the way and cause erratic ignition or misfires. Mike Bellm's tech support articles now suggest setting the shoulder back far enough to allow a 0.001"-0.002" gap between the case head and the standing breech which can be checked with a feeler gage and seems to work well.

_______________________________________________________________________________

In testing the T/C Contender, the uniform closing of the breech was the most important attribute for accuracy (uniformity). Being able to press the barrel to lock with a heavy push and hear the click sound the same for each shot was essential. First moving the sizing die down enough to produce this uniformity with an empty case, then seating the bullet to leave a .100 witness mark on the nose of the bullet produced the greatest accuracy in my testing.

I have never thought of using a feeler gauge, this is a good idea. 

Note: This was not slamming the action shut, but firmly pressing the action down until you hear the click.   

Farm boy from Illinois, living in the magical Pacific Northwest

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Hornet posted this 01 March 2024

The "snap fit" thing?. At one time, the recommendation for reloading for a T/C Contender using a cartridge with a shoulder was to set the sizing die to move the shoulder back just enough to allow the action to close with a firm snap to obtain optimum headspace and minimize case stretch. The problem with that is that small variations in the exact shoulder location could result in excessive interference and create variations in the locking bolt engagement which could prevent the hammer block from moving out of the way and cause erratic ignition or misfires. Mike Bellm's tech support articles now suggest setting the shoulder back far enough to allow a 0.001"-0.002" gap between the case head and the standing breech which can be checked with a feeler gage and seems to work well. FWIW, the old benchrest shooters at the money matches at the local range use "bump dies" every few firings to move the shoulders only back about 0.002" to minimize variations in the preloading on the locking lugs in the bolt guns. The AR shooters also do this to ensure that the bolt lugs reach full engagement when the action closes. That seems to be a concern mostly on the Creedmore and similar very high pressure rounds with largish case head diameters.

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John Alexander posted this 01 March 2024

There is also one person out there that doesn't have a clue what "snap fit" is.  Sounds like what the hero does in the movies by flipping the cylinder of his trusty model 10 with a grim look on his face -- but I'd guess probably not.

John

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mashburn posted this 01 March 2024

Hello Ken

I'm glad there is at least one person out there, who has knowledge, of such things. It is definitely, a factor in accuracy.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 29 February 2024

mr. mashburn ... snap fit ...  i wonder if that perfect snap fit conundrum ... is related to the funny impression that fire forming loads can seem to shoot better than the perfectly formed match loads following ... ?? ...

my serious bench rest buddies have mentioned this also ...   

truth or myth ?? 

maybe we should try breech seating .... ... oh wait ... ...

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mashburn posted this 29 February 2024

The .357 Herrett is a fine hunting cartridge, and I'm sure you will enjoy it. Yes, the cartridge case does require a snap fit, but this can be overdone. When I first started playing with the .30 Herrett and the .357 Herrett, I was having trouble getting good accuracy. I accidently ran into a fellow, who would in the future of that meeting, become very well- known and respected Contender expert. His advice was ease off a little on that snap fit. I followed his directions and much to my surprise, I instantly got the accuracy that I was searching for.

When I started out, I was reading the case forming instructions in the Thompson Center reloading manual and I durn sure had a snap fit, and it was a little exaggerated, the result of that was, no acceptible accuracy. After talking to Mr. ----, and following his advice, my problem was solved. That advice not only affects contenders, it effects any cartridge that has the case head and the shoulder jammed too tightly between the breech block and the shoulder of the chamber. 

In a weak moment, I sold my .357 Herrett and have regretted it ever since. My advice is, stay with the Herrett and don't go to some other contender cartridge. I liked the .357/44 Baines and Davis, but not as much as the .357 Herrett.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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gemihur posted this 27 February 2024

Todd,

The brakes do raise my dander a bit and necessitate muffs but oftentimes keep the recoil manageable and serve to extend barrel length enough to allow use of a buttstock.

I recently acquired another 357 Herrett barrel and realy like it's performance.

I actually sought it out to obtain the engraved rings as I find them to be a fading novelty in today's shooting sports equipment.

357 Herrett wearing Herrett furniture

Thanks,

Jimmy

I shoot, therefore I am

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tdoyka posted this 25 November 2022

my tc encore with a 23" MGM barrel in 444 marlin with a whole host of cast boolits will agree with you. i would take a 300gr fn gc that goes 1624fps and it would kill deer just as a 265gr Hornady fn with a max load, but without the bloodshot meat.

i hunt in swPA and there is no problem with bottlenecks. i have a 14" Contender factory muzzle break barrel that i just abhor. it was given to me by my dad (RIP) and i don't like the muzzle break!!!

 

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Lee Guthrie posted this 25 November 2022

My 2 cents.  I have all the above Contender/Encore barrels, and then some.

BUT, my favorite Contender deer hunting cartridge for woods ranges is the .375 Winchester.  Full loads using 265 gr Lyman/Ideal design cast bullets.  Accurate and very effective.  It would also be legal for those states that have a problem with bottle necked cartridges.  NO hassles with case forming:  just order from Starline.  My barrel does have a muzzle break, and even then you know you fired something.

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JimmyDee posted this 24 November 2022



then it hit me, 357 Herrett.

 Let me know if you need dies.  I came by a set in a trade and have no use for it.

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Hornet posted this 24 November 2022

   The .357 Herrett should work very well since it was developed for Contender use and usually loaded at lower pressures so it lasts a long time if headspaced correctly. 30-30 Brass is plentiful and cheap (pick-up brass can usually be found). 357 Maximum and .35 Remington brass is frequently pricey and/or hard to find. The .357 Maximum would probably be the better choice for an area requiring straight-walled cases for hunting.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 24 November 2022

a 38-55 has a lot of nostalgic appeal ... but really should use a custom reamer ... i miked an original 38-55 chamber casting just today and it has a 0.390 throat !! ...  can't bring myself to alter an original 1895  m94 tho ...  need to just wallow out a 37 mold to a 39 ...

ken

 

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tdoyka posted this 24 November 2022

A .35/30-30 in the Contender is also a good choice and easy to load for.

 

 

i have a 35/30-30 in Win m94 and i love it. i had it done by JES Reboring and it was awesome!!!! he has my business.

 

i forgot, the barrel will be 10". 

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