357 Mag Lever action pet loads

  • Last Post 09 November 2020
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tony1960 posted this 24 April 2020

I have been loaned a Rossi 357M lever gun since I am emotionally isolated from my range and was wondering if anyone has some pet loads to share. I have a Lee 158gn flat nosed, bevel based mould and their 200gn mould, also a RCBS 200gn FNGC. A couple of 125 and 100gn moulds to fill in the spaces.


Looking for a load that will make furry animals fall down up to 100yds, as about as good as my eyes are over open sights.


I've got Unique, IMR4227, Rx7, WW540 at hand but with the gunshops closed not much chance at finding anything else, could maybe scrpe up some 2400.

All loads are helpfull.





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delmarskid posted this 24 April 2020

I had one and liked it very much. My son likes it now. Mine shot about anything I put in it pretty well so I can't recommend. The trick with it was to get the cartridge over all length right so it would feed. I couldn't load 180's in .357 brass and use the crimp groove. It fed button nosed wadcutters like a champ when I seated them out long. Your 158's over unique or 4227 should be just fine. Hornady 180g hollow points had real authority.

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Coydog posted this 24 April 2020

Normal what I use in my BH  ,I use it in my Rossi 92 357mag , Just the WC need to feed mainly one at the time. I use the data for cast and work up the load what the gun told me it likes , You should not have any problem to find the data for the powders you got . As for how the gun shoots I had my gunsmith work on it because of it had lock up on me and give me problems , Not anymore now and he tested it with factory rounds and he had no problem to have a 6" group at 100yrds with open site. If that helps you and I just need to see when I have take the time for what I load up will do the same .

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beagle6 posted this 24 April 2020

About 20 years ago I owned a Rossi M92 clone that I put a Williams 5D receiver sight on. A nice little rig and I regret selling it. I experimented with 141, 158, 160, and 173 cast with some 158 jacketed. Powders used were H110, Blue Dot, and 4227. Almost any combination of those powders and bullets,except the 141 grain, would produce 2 1/2 inch groups at 50 yards, Best groups were always with H110 and standard small pistol primers. My best cast loads were with Lee 158 cast from #2 metal, GC and Tumble lubed. The 160 and 173 were plain based . The 160 shot very well with 110 also. It was store bought and I did not write down were they came from. All the bullets were Semi Wadcutters. Number 2 always shot better than WW. Hope this helps.


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BigMan54 posted this 25 April 2020

Never had a Rossi in .357Mag, Browning B92 yes and a Marlin 1894CS & 1894CB.  

My Dad had a Win 92 in .32-20 converted to .357Mag. 

Number #1 load was #358156GC over Max 2400. Always fed without problem, in everything.

My favorite load was the Saeco #354 180gr over Max IMR4227.   

The Lyman #358429 crimped over the front driving band also feeds very well. PM me for Unique charge if interested.

Lee #358-158-RF feeds perfectly in .357 or .38 cases, +P loads in .38Spl cases lose too much velocity too fast.  Way too much drop past 50yrds.


Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun. Did I mention how much I HATE auto-correct on this blasted tablet.

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Balhincher posted this 26 April 2020

I have a pre-safety marlin 94 in 357 magnum. My favorite cast bullet for this carbine is the NOE 180 grain. My mold casts both gas check and plain base versions of this flat nose bullet. The plain base version with mild loads (about 1200 fps) will shoot 1-1/2 to 2 inch groups at 50 yds. The gas check version will shoot about 1" groups at 50 yards. Of all the bullets I've tried in this rifle this NOE bullet shoots as well or better than all others including several jacketed bullets. 

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tony1960 posted this 27 April 2020

Thanks guys, lot's of good stuff for me to play around with. Restrictions look like being "softened" her soon. With the info that you have supplied I will be looking at 4227, have some AR2205 also, Unique is always a go to powder and can use AP70 as an equiv. I might even open my tin of Nobels Rev #1 and count some grains out, it's only 35+ years old and still smells as sweet.

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Coydog posted this 30 April 2020

If the powder smell good and looks good ,you should not have any problems. I have use powders that was about that age with out any problems and shoots just fine, you will be ok with it . 

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max503 posted this 06 July 2020

I've got a brand, spankin' new Rossi 20" blue 357 lever rifle last week.  Been to the range twice so far.  It likes 170 grain Lee semi-wadcutters.  I got that mold in a group buy.

It also shoots the Lee 124 grain TC bullet which is meant for the 9mm.  Both those bullets were loaded with Unique.

I also made up some light loads using the Lee 105 grain semi-wadcutter and 1.5 grains of Bullseye.  I deprimed unsized cases, then washed them with soap, salt, lemon juice and hot water.  The bullets were seated all the way down on top of the powder charge.  They shot into a cloverleaf at 50 feet.  But I had to single-load them into the gun.  I might try standard loading procedures so that I can feed them through the magazine.

It shoots 148 grain wadcutters with 4.0 grains of Unique, but those won't feed through the magazine and have to be loaded single.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 06 July 2020

... sounds like a winner ! .. i like that you can shoot the heavier bullets ... what twist is in your rossi 357 ? ...


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max503 posted this 06 July 2020

Not sure of the twist rate.  But I will be casting up some more of the 170's.

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Coydog posted this 07 July 2020

I shoot 200 grs about in my Rossi 92  anything I shoot in my BH will work in the Rossi, I have the both sighted in to shoot the same ammo. My SP 101 is not and working on a different  loads for that. 

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tony1960 posted this 10 July 2020

Not much time to play with the Rossi because of the COVID stuff. 

Nice looking gun though, maybe I should look at one myself. Just have to decide between the 16" Stainless and the 20" Blue.

I have read online, the Rossi '92 is 10" twist regardless of caliber.


I know I had a formula somewhere that I stole from Hatcher's Notebook that gives you a maximum projectile length that will stabilise in different twist rates. I have a 10 twist on one of my revolvers and it shoots little 100gn pills like a dream.

Cheers for all the interesting responses.

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max503 posted this 11 July 2020

I'm shooting the Lee 124 grain truncated cone tumble lube bullet, unsized.  It's meant for the 9mm.  So far I've worked up to 5 grains of Unique with no pressure signs and no leading.  I'm using the KISS formula 45-45-10 lube.  One bottle of LLA mixed with a can of liquified car wax.  With the KISS lube you skip boiling down the car wax.  My alloy is virgin stuff, used to make 22 rimfire ammo.  Don't ask me how I got it.    

I'm regularly ringing the 200 yard gong with this load.  I'm scheming a way to jerry-rig a peep sight on the Rossi.  It shouldn't be difficult.  A temporary peep could be made with a piece of tape with a hole in it, stuck to the buckhorn sight.  I'll try that and if it works I'll make something more permanent.

My Dillon is now set for this load so I should have plenty of ammo.  The Rossi is keeping me busy and out of trouble seeing how I'm on a work furlough due to the Covid.  I'm having fun.  Plan to hit the range early in the morning to avoid the high temps we're having.  It's going to be difficult going back to work in a few weeks.  I'm less than a year from retirement.  Hope I can hold out that long and not just say the heck with it and retire early.  I could think of worse things.applause

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tony1960 posted this 13 July 2020

Well, I have found the formulas I was after and some more. I have two available and if I could find out how to insert an excel spreadsheet in here you could all share, other than that PM me with an email and I can send.

The two formulas I have played with concerns rate of twist required to stabilise a given projectile, seems the Rossi won't stabilise the 200gn projectile (bugger), needs a 1:27 not a 10. The other being the stability factor with a known twist rate, both interesting formulas.



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max503 posted this 09 November 2020

148 grain wadcutters would not feed through my Rossi.  Not until I seated them out farther.  Tried some today and they did well.  Powder charge was 3.8 Unique.  That's a 10 shot group at 50 yards shot off a 12 pack for a rest.  The rings on the target are 1 inch apart.

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