.357 vs .44

Discussion in 'Revolver Handguns' started by bostonscottkelly, Apr 18, 2013.

  1. bostonscottkelly

    bostonscottkelly New Member

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    Looking for a large caliber revolver with good knock down power....would not be used for hunting.....which one & why? Thanks
     
  2. 95sniper

    95sniper New Member

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    Knock down power for what? And I would go with the 357, it's a versatile round. A gun that can shoot 357, can also shoot 38s.
     

  3. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    as much as a fan of the 357 Magnum and as many as i have owned over the years, i would still go with the 44 over the 357, simply because i can use lower power 44 Spl. in it, which is still plenty powerful. you can power down the 44, but can only power up the 357 so much before it becomes unsafe.
     
  4. 95sniper

    95sniper New Member

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    Just out of curiosity, what is the ammo price difference? I'm not familiar with 44.
     
  5. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    not really for sure. i reload all mine and use the same powder, primer and bullets in the Mag cases as i do the Spl. cases.
     
  6. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

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    Axx with all this cowboy shooting there are some others available. The .44 S&W Russian is an excellent low pressure round when loaded with smokeless powder for the .44 Mag.:D
     
  7. jigs-n-fixture

    jigs-n-fixture Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporter

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    41 mag.

    It is about as big as most people can stand to actually shoot enough to get highly accurate.

    More punch than the 357. There is not however a less powerful cartridge you can shoot in the same gun like the 357 & 44 mag have.
     
  8. Donn

    Donn Active Member

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    Have both, all three if .41mag is included. A lot depends on your experience with large caliber handguns. The .357 is more versatile and a little cheaper to shoot. Everybody wants a .44mag, till they shoot it. Severe recoil and re-acquiring the target for a second shot is problematic, even for an experienced shooter. Those who load their own will argue they can modify their loads to be more well mannered, but I imagine most people 1) Buy ammo off the shelf. And, 2) Are attracted to hollow point "home defense" loads that are usually full on 44mag. To answer the question, the .357 would be my first choice if I were you. MHO you understand.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2013
  9. HOSSFLY

    HOSSFLY New Member

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    Now i'm a big 41 fan but i have to disagree--
    There are a lot more 44mag shooters out there than 41---
    Felt Recoil is about the same IMO -(in same style gun course)-
     
  10. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The 44 mag loaded with 44 Special is roughly equivalent to the 45 ACP. The 44 mag is overkill for home defense and I would not want to touch one off in a small room without ear protection. The muzzle flash is blinding in the dark. You could get a S&W 25 which is 45 ACP. The police used to use the 4" 357 with 125 grain loads and had very good results with them before the switch to semi autos. The 357 Sig was brought out to mimic the 125 grain 357 mag load but never got poular.
     
  11. AIKIJUTSU

    AIKIJUTSU New Member

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    I'd vote for the .44, as you could use the .44 mag for other purposes, like distance shooting, and .44 special for home/personal defense. There are some really good .44 spl loads available, and they are no more difficult to control than .38 spl would be. If the only purpose is for defense, you may consider a Charter Arms Bulldog variant, as they are .44 spl only, and lightweight, concealable, and you could hold one all day and all night without becoming tired.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2013
  12. bostonscottkelly

    bostonscottkelly New Member

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    Wow....thanks for all the great feedback
     
  13. ninjatoth

    ninjatoth New Member

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    I would say it depends on the size of the gun you want and also how much you are going to shoot it.If you mainly want a large home defense revolver that you rarely shoot than there's no reason not to go with the .44 magnum, because as others have stated, you can lower your loads to .44 special's as I do for home defense and still put some magnums in it at the range for fun.Now if you want a smaller lighter gun, and/or you will be firing it alot than definitely go with the .357 because ammo is 1/2 the price of what .44 magnum ammo is and it still has great knockdown power.
     
  14. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    if you reload, the 44 is always a good option. you can power down the loads for casual plinking or practice or power them up as needed.

    but full magnum loads ae not for the beginner for sure. i shoot quite a bit of magnum loads in mine, but shoot way more 44 Spl. for practice. and loaded with the proper bullets, the 44 Spl. still has plenty of knock down power for SD.

    key is to practice and the ability to handle the recoil.
     
  15. Gizord1

    Gizord1 New Member

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    IMO, .44 mags are overrated. Sure it has good knock down power and it has been proven over time, but a lot of peeps consider it the only good revolver cartridge out there. The .357 mag has also proven itself, it has good knockdown power, lower recoil, cheaper ammo, and it can fire .38s.
    It's your choice, but I personally love the .357.
    I'm not hating the .44 mag, I have a carbine chambered in it, and it would be my second go-to-gun for any need-a-gun scenario (SKS is first).
     
  16. triggerjob

    triggerjob New Member

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    I have a 4" mod 29 in .44 mag. I had it ported and can accurately shoot it one handed and I ain't buff. I mainly practice with .44 specials though, cause I'm a lefty and the magnums tend to want to unscrew the gun from my hand. If you're a righty that won't be a problem.

    Recoil is mainly a function of bullet wieght vrs gun wieght anyway. So a lighter bullet will have less recoil. Dirty Harry actually carried .44 Specials in his magnum with 225 grain bullits. (Trivia)

    So if you have a gun whose recoil you find too much try lighter bullits. Porting will eliminate much of the muzzle flip, but the recoil will remain.

    I am real partial to the .44 Special in 200 or 225 grain when you can find them. Its not as heavy a recoil as you'd expect. Believe it or not, a heavy framed 44 with have less percieved recoil than a lighter frame .357.

    Also you can confidently drop anything in North America with a .44, from feral hogs to sherman tanks.

    Having said all that a .44 has to be a heavy gun or you won't shoot it more than once.

    Your self defense calibur should be the heaviest calibur you can reliably control. This is why 9mms have been adopted by PDs, they are easier to control an effective enough. But if you can control a .357 go there, if you can control a .44 go there.

    Now if you like big bullits but not big recoil, get a .45 acp. The actual recoil of a .45 is the same as a .44, BUT the percieved recoil is less because the barrel is lower in relation to your wrist, and the spring in the slide absorbs much of the energy, if you add a spring piston recoil buffer and tune it heavy, even the slide slap can be taken out giving you almost NO felt recoil.

    That's more than you wanted to know, I'm sure.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2013
  17. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    Any time Eastwood actually fired the revolver, he was shooting a Smith & Wesson Model 25 in .45 Long Colt.[70][citation needed] In 1971, .44 Magnum blanks were not available.[citation needed] However, as a result of decades of Hollywood Western movies there was an ample supply of 5-in-1 blank cartridges. As the Model 25 is built on the same Smith & Wesson N frame as the Model 29, it was simple to substitute it for the Model 29 in scenes where Eastwood had to shoot the revolver.[citation needed]

    Smith & Wesson Model 25—similar to the Model 29, but chambered for the .45 ACP/.45 Auto Rim and later, the .45 Colt cartridge. The best known, and most common, variants of this revolver are the Model 25-2 (.45 ACP) and Model 25-5 (.45 Colt).

    WeaponsCallahan's signature weapon is a Smith & Wesson Model 29 .44 Magnum revolver, which he uses in all of the films. The gun's prominence in the films instantly popularized it. The character states the use of a "Light Special", .44 Special loads (a reference to the fact that .44 special cartridges can be fired in .44 magnum handguns), that he loads himself because it gives him "better accuracy and control in a gun this size". He also states that it's like using Wadcutters in a .357 Magnum. Both of these instances show Callahan's erudition in the arena of high-power handguns. The .44 magnum cartridge was developed by Elmer Keith by loading .44 special cartridges with very heavy bullets and amounts of smokeless powder. These heavy loads could, and can, destroy some light-framed .44 special handguns, and so when Remington chose to produce cartridges specifically for this caliber, they made sure the new .44 Magnum cartridges were so long that they would not fit in .44 special revolvers.

    Dirty Harry's gun is supposedly a Smith & Wesson Model 29 revolver, chambered for a .44 Magnum cartridge. In the film, the gun is shown as being capable of sending assailants flying through the air, even when shot from a distance, however, in reality the gun does not produce such dramatic results. Additionally, the .44 Magnum round is not considered to be a practical caliber for urban police force use due to recoil (which makes target re-acquisition difficult) and over-penetration issues, which greatly increases the likelihood of the bullet going through its target and injuring bystanders. The actual gun used on set by Clint Eastwood was in fact a Smith & Wesson Model 29. It is a common misconception that a Model 29 could not be located and a Model 57, chambered in .41 Magnum, was used instead. Clint Eastwood contacted Bob Sauer, representative for Smith and Wesson, to acquire the pistol. The Model 29 had been out of production for several years at the time, but a number of pistols were assembled from parts at the factory and provided to the crew. Eastwood took one to a firing range to familiarize himself with the Model 29.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2013
  18. HOSSFLY

    HOSSFLY New Member

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    You sure about that :confused:
     
  19. AR10

    AR10 New Member

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    Son of Sam liked the 44 special. That tragedy helped famoustize that round.

    I own both a short 44 mag Ruger and a short 44 special Rossi.

    The dirty harry movies sold all most as many 44 mags as the Kenyan sold guns.
     
  20. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

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    and many got resold, because people weren't use to the recoil!