38 +p question
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Old 01-02-2009, 03:56 AM   #1
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Default 38 +p question

(mods feel free to move if in wrong forum)

So, I'm fairly positive I know the answer to this question, but with a fuzzy head due to last night's festivities, I'm going to ask it anyway.

I'm looking into picking up a .357. I've been doing some window shopping, and I ran across something that made me scratch my head. If a revolver is chambered for .357 and .38 +p, does that also mean it can fire standard .38 rounds? I know the "+p" adds a little kick to the round, but I wasn't sure if that meant that .38 couldn't be fired through it unless it was the +p rating.

Like I said, I think I already know the answer, but clarification would be great :-)

Happy New year!

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Old 01-02-2009, 05:04 AM   #2
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All .38 special and .357 magnum cartridges are OK.

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Old 01-02-2009, 11:45 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by falseharmonix View Post
(mods feel free to move if in wrong forum)

So, I'm fairly positive I know the answer to this question, but with a fuzzy head due to last night's festivities, I'm going to ask it anyway.

I'm looking into picking up a .357. I've been doing some window shopping, and I ran across something that made me scratch my head. If a revolver is chambered for .357 and .38 +p, does that also mean it can fire standard .38 rounds? I know the "+p" adds a little kick to the round, but I wasn't sure if that meant that .38 couldn't be fired through it unless it was the +p rating.

Like I said, I think I already know the answer, but clarification would be great :-)

Happy New year!
A .357 Magnum will safely fire 38 Special, 38+P, 38 +P+. and 38 +P++. Most of the time you will find it cheaper to buy 357 Magnum ammo instead of 38 +P ammo. I reload 357 & 38's frequently, and I normally load up both cartridges to the same specifications.
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Old 01-02-2009, 02:58 PM   #4
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In addition to being able to fire all .38 Special ammunition, you can also fire .38 Long Colt and .38 Short Colt ammunition.

Firing the .38 Short Colt ammunition is the next thing to firing BB caps in a .22 revolver.

Bob Wright

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Old 01-02-2009, 03:26 PM   #5
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Just a marketing tactic. If I remember correctly S&W made some lightweight revolvers that specifically should not be used with some .38 spl ammo. Something about steel sleeved/alloy shrouded barrel and low velocity lead bullets. Check with the manufacturer to be certain ALL .38 ammo is OK.

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Old 01-02-2009, 09:12 PM   #6
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Good deal, thats pretty much what I figured.

So why, if the revolver is chambered for .357, would you want to shoot .38+p instead? I think the main reason I want a .357 and not just a .38 is for the stopping power the .357 has and the .38 has cheaper plinking costs. Shooting .38 +p would be more expensive than regular 38 special, correct?

The more I read and practice with my 9mm, the more I've been feeling the need for something with some bigger balls for personal defense.

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Old 01-02-2009, 09:28 PM   #7
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the .38+p loads will be much more comfortable to shoot. Some might carry the +p's and have the mags for a reload.

Light weight snubbies with mag ammo can be VERY uncomfortable to shoot. +p's might give decent realistic training fodder w/o the punishment of the mags.

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Old 01-02-2009, 09:55 PM   #8
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I live in Illinois, so unfortunately, this weapon will be solely for home defense. Because of that I'm thinking of a 4" barrel, thereby helping to reduce felt recoil. (I hope my logic is correct here...the longer the barrel, the greater the reduction of recoil).

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Old 01-03-2009, 01:56 AM   #9
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Actually, all other tings being equal (caliber, grip angle, etc) it is the MASS (weight) of the weapon that affects recoil, not barrel length. The heavier weapon will recoil less.

Last weekend, was at the range testing some heavy 357 handloads- had 2 357s with me- a S&W Mdl 66 Combat Masterpiece with a 5" bbl, and a Dan Wesson 15-HV with a 10" bbl. 38 Wadcutters in each felt like I was using my Ruger 22. .357 with 165 gr JSP over 15 grains of 2400- IMMEDIATELY could tell the difference between the two weapons. Still very manageable in the 10" Dan Wesson, but very brisk in the Mdl 66. Then the other shooter on the line gave me 6 rounds of Buffalo Bore gas checked heavy 357 loads to try in the Dan Wesson.

The bleeding from my left hand stopped fairly quickly, and the mark will be gone in a week to 10 days. Shooting from the bench, heel of my left hand under the butt- and the muzzle flip trapped heel between bottom rear of grip and bench. This is a revolver that weighs almost as much as a very light carbine!

IMHO, get the .357, forget +Ps- shoot 38 for plinking, 357 for social purposes.

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Old 01-04-2009, 11:20 AM   #10
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I have a 4" Colt King Cobra (.357 Mag). Most of the time, I practice with 38 SPL's for cost considerations. I shoot magnum loads occasionally, too.

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