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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just bought a 357 magnum 9" MGM barrel for my encore. After searching the past few days i ran across a post on here that i can't find now lol. My question is am i going to gain any real world hunting benefits, If i either have it done or rent a reamer and turn my Mag into a Max.

The main purpose of the barrel is whitetail hunting. I will be reloading Barnes XPB 140gr bullets.

Thanks for any advice.
 

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Definitely will gain going to max but I would suggest sending back to MGM and let them ream and remark barrel

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Going to the Max will definitely take it to the next level, However the most gain will be with bullets much heavier than 140gr. I've had 8-10 Max barrels over the years, still have two, and have never had much luck with lighter bullets. Oh yeah it'll flat smoke'em, but accuracy is usually lacking. These days I shoot mostly cast in mine up around and over 220gr.
Walt

Hey trm-1, I've seen your post before quite often, but never realized we were neighbors. I'm on the other side of the lake.
 

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Going to the Max will definitely take it to the next level, However the most gain will be with bullets much heavier than 140gr. I've had 8-10 Max barrels over the years, still have two, and have never had much luck with lighter bullets. Oh yeah it'll flat smoke'em, but accuracy is usually lacking. These days I shoot mostly cast in mine up around and over 220gr.

Walt



Hey trm-1, I've seen your post before quite often, but never realized we were neighbors. I'm on the other side of the lake.
Hopalong7 where are you located? I am in Rocky Mount / Franklin county

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks guys good advice i will consider both sending it to MGM i had thought about doing that anyway. And getting some heavier bullets.
 

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I have a 10" max for my Contender, and a 6" FA 353 Casull. With the heavier bullets (170 & 180 grains) There is only 200 FPS difference between the two. The FA revolver is super tight, and I do have it loaded up slightly beyond recommended loads for a 357 Mag, but the Casull can take pretty stout loads. The max in my contender has take a few hogs and several deer. Have yet to recover a bullet. I have used some 140 grain bullets in the Max and get 2.5" groups at 100 yards from the bench. This is a load I use for called in coyotes. Probably too much gun for them, but it sure drops them fast.
 

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I have several guns in Max including a 10" and 14" for the Contender.

My 10" max is very accurate. My full power loads push a 180 gr cast bullet to 1760 fps and 160 gr cast to 2100 fps

I am pretty recoil tolerant, but shooting full power loads in the 10" Max is real bad. Last time I fired a dozen or so full power rounds, my wrist was sore for days.

There are other issues with the Max in a tender. I gave up shooting Mag case ammo in Max guns a long time ago. The bullet is in free flight when it leaves the case before reaching the Max throat. I also have had more than a little frustration with light loads in max cases. There is just too much empty space.

I really do not shoot the 10" Max barrel any more. If I wanted to do long range 35 cal pistol shooting, I would use the 14" barrel with a scope. Recoil is much more tolerable.

I also have a 357 Mag for the tender.

The mag is fun to shoot, but a little more power would be nice. I used to load 357s hot, but gave it up when I thought through the risk of my ammo finding its way into some wimpy revolver that should have never been chambered for a "magnum" round.

If you want to re-chamber, I would strongly recommend the 360 Dan Wesson. You need to go to Starline to get brass for either. Full power loads in the 360 will come close enough to 357 max, especially in a 9". In an Encore, you can load 360s very hot (think 353 Casull pressures). You will probably loose very little. The 360 should be much better with reduced loads than the Max. The 360 should also be much better at shooting ammo in 357 mag cases. With medium to heavy bullets, you can seat way out in a mag case and expect accuracy to be just as good as when using 360 cases.

If this was a 14" or longer barrel and you were really trying for absolute maximum effective range for hunting, the max would be a more reasonable choice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks Guys shooting a coyote is in the plans. And i'm not nuts about having a sore wrist either LOL.
The 360 Dan Wesson sounds interesting out of a 9" tube.
Being as its deer season now. I might just see what the 357 mag does. Then after season decide.
 

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trm-1, I live in Stewartsville, just off Rt 24. My oldest son and my daughter both live in Rocky Mount, so I'm there very often, and in fact will be today. I also had a place on the lake straight across the cove from Crazy Horse Marina for a number of years. Spent most of my life paving roads and have paved every road in Franklin County at least once, so I'm rather familiar with the place. Also managed Franklin Ready Mix for a few years and my wife is a Franklin County Hall, so have the county are my in-laws.
 

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Yup in a 9 inch closed breach gun the max is going to leave the mag in the dust. My guess is it would about split the difference between a 357 mag and a 35 rem. If anything crossing the middle more toward the 35 rem.
 

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Most of his performance increase will come from the pressure increase.

If he wanted to go the "353 Casull route" and load Magnum cases with the bullet seated out as far as possible, use rifle primers and go for 55 - 60 ksi pressure he could probably get to typical 357 Max performance. His Encore would not care one bit. It can handle these pressures in the much bigger 454.

I just wont load that hot in a mag case given concerns about a round in the wrong gun.

In a 9" barrel, the extra capacity of the Max case will not help much. It will just result more muzzle blast and a higher cost per round (for powder).
 

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I have a 10" .357 mag contender barrel, leaving the bullet out until it just touches the rifling, and use a heavy powder charge, am getting about 2,000 fps with both 140 and 158g bullets, very good accuracy without to much recoil, and deadly on deer, if I were you, try that before boring it out to max. by seating the bullet out there is little to no bullet jump.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have a 10" .357 mag contender barrel, leaving the bullet out until it just touches the rifling, and use a heavy powder charge, am getting about 2,000 fps with both 140 and 158g bullets, very good accuracy without to much recoil, and deadly on deer, if I were you, try that before boring it out to max. by seating the bullet out there is little to no bullet jump.
I think i will try this.

Thanks to everyone very good advice. And keep them coming i'm totally open minded :).
 

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I have a couple general rules for buying and keeping firearms, you may want to consider #2.

1. Don't ever sell or trade a gun away. At some point in time you are going to wish you still had it.

2. Don't ever permanently modify a firearm. (if you want to spend money to get a 357 reamed out to 357 max, save the money and buy a second barrel) Spending just a little more and you will have two barrels.

3. Keep receipts away from the wife.


these are just my rules, make up your own and follow them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have a couple general rules for buying and keeping firearms, you may want to consider #2.

1. Don't ever sell or trade a gun away. At some point in time you are going to wish you still had it.

2. Don't ever permanently modify a firearm. (if you want to spend money to get a 357 reamed out to 357 max, save the money and buy a second barrel) Spending just a little more and you will have two barrels.

3. Keep receipts away from the wife.


these are just my rules, make up your own and follow them.
I wish i had keep my 243,44 mag,6mm ppc, 17 hmr. The 6mm and .17 were Bullberry's
 
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