.357 Remington Maximum (using Sierra bullets)
Date: Oct 27 2016
The .357 Remington Maximum was developed in 1982 as a joint effort between Sturm, Ruger & Company and Remington Arms. The case is based on a lengthened .357 Magnum case but with a small rifle primer pocket. It was initially offered with a single factory load that contained a 158-grain jacketed bullet at an advertised 1,825 fps. The revolver was essentially a Ruger New Model Super Blackhawk with a “stretched” cylinder and frame to accommodate the comparatively long cartridge. Barrel lengths included 7 ½ and 10 inches, with the latter intended for silhouette competition. Soon Dan Wesson, Thompson/Center and others began offering guns.
Although it gained some popularity among handgun hunters and competitive shooters, the guns were too heavy for everyday carry and sales were limited, the Remington factory load was known to cut the top strap of revolvers. Ruger discontinued production by 1984, and other companies soon followed suit. Ammunition for the .357 Maximum is now discontinued, but Remington still offers brass, making it a handloading proposition only.
Industry maximum average pressure is established at 48,000 CUP. A small rifle primer easily handles this level of pressure without deforming or rupturing and also gives uniform powder ignition with all powders.
Industry maximum overall cartridge length is 1.990 inches, although some revolvers will accept longer lengths. When handloading single-shot pistols, such as the Thompson/Center Contender used to develop the accompanying data, overall lengths were increased (up to 2.250 inches) depending on the bullet used. The most accurate loads were usually those that approached maximum.
Standard dies sets for the .38 Special/.357 Magnum are suitable for handloading the .357 Maximum. A heavy roll crimp is suggested to help achieve consistent powder ignition.