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oal. Long or shorter for reloading cylinder

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What do you guys think is best a longer overall length or shorter one for speed loading a cylinder? I was under the idea shorter is better but I saw a very accomplished shooter today running them longer. What are your thoughts ? This is for 929 




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The length of the bullet sticking out won't make much difference. Round nose bullets are the best of all. Any shape with a flat end can slow you down once in a while, depending on how that clip hits the cylinder.

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I took the accuracy issues that were mentioned with 38 short colts in 357 cyclinders to its logical conclusion and made my 929 rounds as long as possible.  With a slight safety margin however.  In my initial load development one round did work it’s way out and jam the cylinder.


In my wife’s gun


...of course 



 I load 1.185”  but I do use a heavy long 165gr .358 round.  Out of curiosity I should see how deep it does sit in the case. Never bothered.

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The bullet and fit of cases to moon clips will make a bigger difference than any OAL differences in 9mm.

Now in a 357 mag chamber, 38 short colts at under 1.200 are best, 38 specials are ok, 357 mags are worst.

IF you're using Speed Loaders short colts are worse and I like the 357 magnum best (no tricked out Comp III's though, just uncut ones with the cut ones 38 specials are best).


The issues with Speed Loaders are that they need enough cartridge sticking out of the Speed Loader to find the Cylinder.

With Moon Clipped rounds the longer the OAL the more a perfect fit in the Clip matters,  as a slight angle at 1.100 becomes more acute, and problematic, at 1.600.  

Secondary is ejecting the spent cases the shorter the case the quicker the star passes it on the way back into the cylinder.

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  • 2 weeks later...
22 hours ago, IHAVEGAS said:

From reading this, if a person has a 10mm/40 Ruger and he is thinking about using 10 mm brass to get around the small primer shortage, it would be best to cut down the brass to .40 length?

Not worth the effort especially if you only have to use them for practice.

Just load them the shortest OAL you can AND use RN bullets.


The key for the longer OAL is a tight fit of the moon clip to the brass.  Though I used 44 Russian in my m29, and was able to make master in USPSA before the 8 shot rule change, and the OAL on them was 1.280 which is longer than most 10mm loads.  And the Moon Clips weren't super tight.  

Now using 44 Magnums or 357 Magnums at 1.5" starts getting to be a pain.  But even then I don't think I'd ever go to the effort to shorten them.


Your plan, minus trimming, is very wise though!

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