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Thread: Reloading Obsolete Cartridges

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    Question Reloading Obsolete Cartridges

    How do you guys go about working up loads for a cartridge when there is no reloading data? I have a 350 Griffen & Howe that I want to expand my reloading for it. The only data I have found is the 2 loads in Cartridges of the world. I have been using IMR 4350 with 250 grain Swift-A-Frame. I would like to try some other powders along with some 225 grain bullets but how do you decide a good starting point/powder? The 350 Griffen & Howe is a 375 H&H necked down to 35 caliber. Any thoughts or info would be greatly appreciated.

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    I'm not sure but you may be able to adapt some data from the 358STA. I believe it is also based on full length H&H brass. I think that there is an article on the 350G&H in Wolfe's big bore cartridges, I would check it for load data but my dog made confetti out of my copy.

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    Case capacity should be close to the 358Norma. Compare your 250gr /4350 load to a 358 Norma load using 4350 with a 250gr. If you are within 2or 3 grs you should be able to reduce any 358 Norma Load by 6 or 8 grs and work up from there.

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    According to my Load from a Disk program data base, there is a 35 Griffin and Howe Magnum (Is that the same cartridge?) that has a case capacity of 98.684 grains of water. The case length is 2.785

    The 358 Norma capacity is 88 grains, and the case length is 2.510

    According to a Wildcats book I have, the 350 G&H is based on the 375 H&H. (The "35 G&H I see in my LFD software, appears to be the same thing, but I dunno.)

    The "book" article gives some velocities for some bullet weights, but it has no actual loading data.

    The 350 STA case is 104.10 grains of water, and 2.845 long.

    Keep in mind that I'm not a Wildcatter, and I can tell you only what is in that book, but If you need any information from the article in this book, I can see if it's in there.

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    Usually lots of digging is required to find loads for a specific wildcat. Older factory cartridges can often be found in older reloading manuals. When in doubt, do as Smitty has demonstrated and make some careful comparisons of case capacities.

    I did a little digging for you, and in addition to Smitty's citation, PO Ackley in his "Handbook for Shooters and Reloaders" lists single loads for a 35 G&H Magnum with 4350 for 180, 200, 220 and 250 grain bullets.

    John Donnelly in his "Handloader's Manual of Cartridge Conversions" call is a 35 G&H Magnum, too, and cites Ackley as his source for a single load using 4350 and a 250 grain bullet.

    I checked the Speer Manual #1 from 1954, about the same era as that cartridge, and they had some interesting rounds, but not yours. Early Lyman and Hornady manuals are blank, too.

    Interesting enough, Phil Sharpe's "Complete Guide to Handloading" (1953) lists a 350 H&H Magnum which he says "is nothing more than a necked down 375 H&H", but the powder he lists is no longer made. He goes on further to say that both 35 G&H Magnum and and 350 G&H Magnum were used by G&H, but he doesn't provide any additional data.

    And that's the problem with older rounds and older info sources- You'll probably find loads, but the powders just might not be around any more.

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    I would like to thank everyone for the info and help. My 350 Griffen & Howe is a 375 H&H necked down to 35 caliber. I have also heard of it being call a 35 G&H Magnum and 350 H&H Magnum. I even call Griffen & Howe to see if they had any load data in their records but they said no.

    Smitty of the North,
    You are right about the case capacity. Alot of people have told me to use 358 Norma data but the case capacity is not real close.

    BrownBear,
    Would you mine sending me the single load listings out of your PO Ackley book for the 35 G&H Magnum? I can look at that data and see how close I am with what I have been reloading. I have been using IMR 4350.

    I really like the cartridge and would like to use its full potential without going over board. I think I'm really on the light side and could get better performance out of it. Quality Cartridge sells load ammo for it but I don't know if they would give out any data. On the other hand I have killed 2 moose and a mountain goat(303 yards) with the rifle. Thanks in advance for any info/help.

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    Donnelly only lists the Ackley load for the 250, but in fact Ackley lists loads for 4 bullets. I hesitate to list them because old PO Ackley got real enthusiastic in some of his recommended loads. Heck I couldn't even get some of his charges into cases when using drop tubes.

    Saying all that and recommending that you start a little below these loads, here goes:

    180 grain bullet, 93 grains of 4350, 3325 fps.

    200 grain bullet, 91 grains of 4350, 3220 fps.

    220 grain bullet, 89 grains of 4350, 3150 fps.

    250 grain bullet, 88 grains of 4350, 3075 fps.

    I have no way to guess whether those are hot or moderate, so use all due caution in working up to them.

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    Research as previously posted is the way to go about loading up your L'il Honey. Load From a Disk I will also highly recommend as a very excellent tool, and not that expensive at all.
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

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    What is a good load from a disk program to get and where can you get them? Thanks

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    I had a 350 rigby which is essentially the 375 H&H necked down, slightly shortened and beltless, though it predates the 375 by two years.

    Anyhow, I couldn't find any current load data, so extrapolated between the 35 whelen and 358 Norma and worked up loads. My best accuracy was with Varget, though RL 15 would also be a good choice.

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    Paul H
    Do you have any load data for the 350 Rigby? The 350 Rigby has a smaller case capacity then my 350 Griffen & Howe.

    BrownBear
    Thanks for the data. I have been reloading 250grn Swift-A-Frames with 72 grns of IMR 4350.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 450HUNTER View Post
    What is a good load from a disk program to get and where can you get them? Thanks

    http://www.loadammo.com/

    Smitty of the North
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    I looked in Cartridges of the world and they show the same four loads that BB listed. I just filled a 375H&H case to the neck with imr4350 and could only get about 70grs in it. According to C.O.T.W. there are different versions of this round ranging from necked down to necked down and blown out. I would fill a case to the neck, weigh that and back down about 10% and work up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 450HUNTER View Post
    Paul H
    Do you have any load data for the 350 Rigby? The 350 Rigby has a smaller case capacity then my 350 Griffen & Howe.

    BrownBear
    Thanks for the data. I have been reloading 250grn Swift-A-Frames with 72 grns of IMR 4350.
    These loads were worked up in my gun, which had a 24" barrel. They aren't based on published data, I basically started with 35 whelen ackley data and worked up. So use at your own risk. 250 gr hornady rn, 66 gr varget, 2700 fps. 250 gr hornady rn, 72 gr H-4350, 2700 fps. The Varget load was more accurate, so that was my standby load. As I recall I also tried the 250 gr speer and hornady spitzers with the varget load, velocity was in the same ballpark but accuracy wasn't as good.

    The hornady rn is a soft bullet and the small doe I took was nearly decapitated with a neck shot at 10 paces. I should have worked up loads with the 250 gr a-frames. One thing to note, in my 35 whelen ackley I used the hornady 250 gr sp and the swift a-frame. I'd been given the suggestion to work up loads with the hornady to save the more expensive bullets, then just swap them out for the a-frame. That did work in the accuracy dept, but the partition drives up pressures, so the a-frame would exit the muzzle 100 fps faster than the same weight hornady using the same powder charge, and hence was running at higher pressures. So make sure you work up loads with a chrono, as not having published data puts you in no mans land if you don't have some means to directly or indirectly deduct pressure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    So make sure you work up loads with a chrono, as not having published data puts you in no mans land if you don't have some means to directly or indirectly deduct pressure.
    The wisest possible words.

    Also study up on "classic" pressure signs such as those described in the front of reloading manuals, too. They kind of all work together with velocity to give you clues.

    I load old rounds including 25-20 Single Shot, 38-56 and 50-140, plus wildcats for which there is basically no modern data. And the manufacturers are pretty slow to get out the data for less popular rounds like 22 Hornet, 25-20, 32-20, 250-3000, 7x57, 284, 300 Savage, 30-40 Krag, 35 Remington and 358, which I also load. I tend to buy larger quantities of powders that work, but when those run out, I have to start from scratch if I'm not willing to wait (and hope) for published data.

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    Ken waters did a write up on the 350 G&H Magnum in the "Big Bore Rifles and Cartridges" book. While he didn't give specific loads he points the way for powders and speeds.

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    AkMike1
    Thanks I will see if Ican find that book.

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    It's only a couple of pages long. The book is put out by Wolfe Publishing ISBN 1-879356-00-7

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    If you want I can take pics of the pages and send to you rather than buy the book. If so PM me your email and I'll send them.

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