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Reloading The .32 Smith & Wesson (short)

Loads for .32 Smith & Wesson: (short)(case is .605″ long)
(Note: Most ARE MAXIMUM loads, you may want to use 10% less to start.)
(See note on Powders below or read all about various Powders.)
Due to different barrel lengths, type of bullet, seating depth, primer type and other factors, you may not get near the FPS charted. It is just a guide and the reason you should start under these charges and work up.

Bullet size is .314″ (lead) in diameter.

85 Grain Leads
W2311.4 gr.640 fps (max)
HP381.3 gr.668 fps
IMR 700X1.4 gr.665 fps
Bullseye1.3 gr.670 FPS
88 Grain LEAD RN Remington commercial
S&W (short)638.8 FPShi=676, lo=597, ES=78
90 Grain lead Rn
HP-381.3 gr.438 FPS
Unique1.7 gr.441 FPS
Unique2.0 gr.479 (max)
W-2311.4 gr.422
W231/HP382.0 gr.561
Unique2.3 gr.542

These are the only loads I could find for this aging cartridge. Almost all .32 revolvers are chambered for the .32 S&W Long, also called the .32 Colt New Police cartridge. See the page for this caliber.

Discussion: All the powders listed are fast burning powders in small quantities for this light bullet and light duty caliber.

A bullet with a copper gas check or copper plating is best for INDOOR ranges to keep lead vapors out of the air.

Power Pistol, Bullseye, Unique and 2400 are products of Alliant (formerly Hercules) Powders.
Clays, Universal, HP38, HS6 and H4895 are products of Hodgdon Powders.
IMR 3031 and IMR 4895 are products of IMR (formerly DuPont) Powder Company.
No. 2, No. 5, No. 7, No. 9, #2230, and #2460 are products of Accurate Arms Company
WAP (Winchester Action Pistol), WMR, WSF, WSL, 760, 748, 231 and 540 are products of Winchester, Components Div.

References: Accurate Arms Co. 1996 Reloading booklet – – Alliant Powder Co. Reloaders’ Guide (1995) – – Hodgdon’s Basic Reloaders Manual (1996) – – Speer Reloading Manual, #12 – – Winchester Reloading Components Manual, 14th edition – – Lyman Piston & Revolver Reloading Handbook, 2nd edition. – – VihtaVuori Oy Company,reloading booklet (1995) – – Numerous magazine articles on reloading special calibers and personal loads where noted.

MD Smith

MD Smith

MD Smith has had a storied career from his family broadcasting AM radio business, to his 36 year career in TV broadcasting. He is a published fiction and non-fiction writer, earned his pilots license in 1965, and is the original founder of Reload Ammo in 1996. His loads have been successfully tested and used by others for more than 25 years.

5 Responses

  1. Hi , I would like to load .32 short cartridges using 78 Grain RN 32 Caliber sized 0.313 Coated lead bullets and can’t find any data with that grain bullet . I also would like to use HP-38 as my powder , would I be able to work up a load around 700-750 fps with the 85 Gr. load data you provided , ……… the gun will be a new 1863 pocket Remington steel frame 3.5 inch barrel with a conversion cylinder . thank you for your time

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