I tried my Buffalo Bore .38 in my 642 today...


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Nightcrawler
April 9, 2007, 02:30 AM
Bear in mind, I shoot .44 Magnum for fun.

OUCH. Made my fingers tingle. I think that gun and ammo combination about kicked my ass. The recoil was simply too much for accurate shooting; I didn't want to finish the cylinder. Normally recoil doesn't bother me much (standard .38 +Ps in the 642 were no sweat), but a man's got to know his limitations. A 158 grain slug clocking a thousand feet per second from a 15 ounce gun hurts on both ends.

Hm. I think I'll be looking for the older FBI load, or trying Speer's 135 grain. The BB is bad enough where I won't practice with it, and a snubby is such a challenging gun that you really need to practice with it.

I'd recommend the BB for all-steel guns. Well, if you can shoot a scandium, you can shoot BB .38 in a 642, but it was a little much for me. :o

I do want a heavier bullet though (probably FBI load). A .38 snub needs all the help with penetration that it can get, I think.

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fiVe
April 9, 2007, 02:39 AM
NC,

Thanks for the report. We are having a big ammo discussion over at the 642 Club. This info will be a welcome addition.

I'm very curious about Corbon's DPX all-copper round (I think it is 110gr).

R/fiVe

Nightcrawler
April 9, 2007, 02:47 AM
I'm hesitant to use light bullets in a 1-7/8" barrel. A heavier bullet has more momentum and will penetrate deeper in a given medium, and out of such a short barrel I think the light loads would lose the velocity advantage that compensates for their lack of said momentum.

It's not that the ammo isn't good by any stretch. It just recoils too much for me. It hurts to shoot, and as such I can't practice with it. You NEED to practice with a snub, so. My ammo hunt continues.

Jim March
April 9, 2007, 02:52 AM
Check Buffbore's page again. They've just released a slew of new loads.

They've taken that same gaschecked soft lead 158gr hollowpoint and released it as a 3Spl STANDARD pressure round, doing about 850fps in your gun. That's pretty much identical to what the Remington 158+P does, main differences being lower peak pressure, the gascheck controls leading and the BuffBore version is flash-suppressed for night fights. It would make a great load for your 642.

Keep any of the +P Buffbores around for full-sized guns.

loplop
April 9, 2007, 09:35 AM
Those new loads might do the trick.

Or practice might also do the trick. I found after about 500 38/+P rounds through my light <16oz snubs that I quit thinking of them as having a lot of recoil. I actually enjoy shooting my AirLight now. Odd. I guess I just got used to it.

I'm not particularly recoil sensitive, but I can develop flinches with some powerful handguns. Like the 357 mag in my 340PD, although I do like shooting it. But 38+P is a piece of cake anymore.

YMMV, of course, but perhaps the "felt" in "felt recoil" will lessen over time?

ARTiger
April 9, 2007, 11:15 AM
Lop, I agree in the "felt" recoil diminishing over time. I have a 5" .460 that seems to recoil less to me every couple of months when I shoot 50-100 rounds through it. My 642 seems tame now.

Speaking of 642's . . . I shot some of that Buff Bore +P FBI load last week as well and also think it's a bit much from a 15 oz. snubbie. It's a bit on the loud side as well. (Was making more noise at the range than the guy next to me shooting .45's for certain.)

However, it is the cat's pajamas in my 4" GP 100. Much less blast and recoil than even tame .357 loads and some of the most accurate ammo I've ever run through the GP - which is saying a lot because it's shot most everything ever loaded commercially at some point. <2" 25 yard groups! Now, if only Buff Bore would get off of pricing smaller/defensive handgun calibers at $1 a round like they're some African safari loads or something I might just buy some more for the GP.

Sundles
April 9, 2007, 11:39 AM
Folks,

Yesterday I was shooting my wifes early 642 with the new "Standard Pressure Lower Recoil Flash suppressed HVY 38 SPL" Buffalo Bore stuff. I would say that felt recoil is about 50% of what it is with the same revolver shooting Buffalo Bore +P ammo. Its amazing that when you slow the bullet down 150 fps, you get so much less felt recoil.

ARtiger,

Sorry for the pricing, but for a smaller company (we dont make our own brass or most of our bullets) who makes things in smaller lots, it is always going to cost more to make our ammo. The good news is that you cant find anything like our ammo any where, so hopefully it is still worth buying. It is the ammo I would most want to protect my family with.

kmrcstintn
April 9, 2007, 09:38 PM
I'm hesitant to use light bullets in a 1-7/8" barrel. A heavier bullet has more momentum and will penetrate deeper in a given medium, and out of such a short barrel I think the light loads would lose the velocity advantage that compensates for their lack of said momentum.

It's not that the ammo isn't good by any stretch. It just recoils too much for me. It hurts to shoot, and as such I can't practice with it. You NEED to practice with a snub, so. My ammo hunt continues.

I understand your hesitation about the lighter bullets, but the CorBon DPX is a solid copper hollowpoint and will hold together for deeper penetration; the all copper construction also offers a more controlled expansion that promotes deeper penetration than traditional lead core/copper jacket 110 grain hollowpoints

Jim March
April 9, 2007, 10:41 PM
The DPX is a contender in 38+P, but it needs the +P part to expand. It's true though, the copper construction delays expansion enough to get a deep punch.

The problem is, if it fails to expand, you've got a bit of a turd on your hands.

When a 158gr "Keith pattern" lead hollowpoint fails to expand, you've still shot 'em with something that will hurt even if it doesn't change shape at all. The Keith-profile semi-wadcutter (without a hollow) is a known killer.

Better yet: when this shape (with hollow) fails, the opening of the hollow still tends to open a bit, often to about bore size. When you shoot Winchester 158+Ps from a 2" barrel into cloth-wrapped gel or similar, this is the usual failure pattern.

Which means you get basically a bore-width flatnose with a hollow in it...in terms of wounding, basically a 158gr full wadcutter. Which is a perfectly good wounder too - better than a regular Keith-pattern.

When a more normal hollowpoint shape like the DPX fails, you get a profile more like ball ammo with a slight flatnose...not good.

So: give me a choice between a 158 that has a good shape even if it fails, or a 110 that will suck in comparison if it fails, and the felt recoil is about the same (either the Remmie +P or the new standard pressure Buffbore 158), then this isn't a hard choice.

UNLESS I have a very light gun, in which case the 158s might yank under recoil. This would take a gun less than 15oz, and the BuffBore standard pressure might resist this more than a +P version (maybe!). But for these ultralights, the Buffbore standard pressure 125 is an option.

ArchAngelCD
April 9, 2007, 10:41 PM
Nightcrawler,
Speer's 135 gr Short Barrel .38 +P rounds were designed for a 1.875" barrel and work great in my J frame. The bullets designed to expand reliably from a short barrel and all test indicate it does.

Sundles
April 9, 2007, 11:31 PM
We shot a bazillion cylinders full of the 158gr. load through my model 340 and never did get a bullet to pull in 5 shots. In fact we couldnt get the +P version of the 158gr. load to pull in 5 rounds in my 12 oz model 340.

Jim March
April 9, 2007, 11:48 PM
Huh. Tim, are you crimping the hell out of 'em or what? :D

"Pulling" HAS been noted on the Remmie 158+Ps, in 12.5oz and below guns. The problem is reputedly severe with the 10.5oz critter.

<scratches head>

Wait...Tim, how well anchored is your gas check on the 158s? Is it possible the copper-to-brass contact at the base plate is slowing any possible yanking?

Sundles
April 10, 2007, 12:43 AM
Jim,

Im not trying to be a turd myself, but we are doing something long over due to solve the whole crimp jump problem and I aint telling what it is:-)

We cut our teeth on comercializing the 500 and 475 Linebaugh cartridges about ten years ago. From the very beginning, crimp jump was a big problem with them. So, we were looking at this problem a long time ago.

If a person were to fire three of our soft 158gr. loads in a very light revolver and not rotate the two unfired rounds, so that they fire next in sequence the next time you shoot, you would eventually get our ammo to jump crimp too. People that use those super light revolvers, need to really think their way through the dynamics. So, our 158gr. load wont jump crimp in five rounds, but if you subjected the same cartridge to 10 or 12 firings, it would likely jump crimp in a 12 oz gun. Guys who are shooting all steel guns, dont need to consider any of these dynamics.

Jim March
April 10, 2007, 01:04 AM
Crazy glue?

:neener:

loplop
April 10, 2007, 07:46 AM
That's good to hear. I really like the idea of the FBI Load, but it jumps crimp badly in my MP340. Nice to hear yours doesn't.

Nematocyst
April 14, 2007, 04:35 AM
Tonight, I'm celebrating the fact that I survived two weeks from hell at work.

:cool:

I'm reading this thread in the context of several other related threads (http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=269258).

I tried my Buffalo Bore .38 in my 642 today...
Bear in mind, I shoot .44 Magnum for fun.

OUCH. Made my fingers tingle. I think that gun and ammo combination about kicked my ass. The recoil was simply too much for accurate shooting; I didn't want to finish the cylinder.Which means in a 686 4", it should be just about right.

...642 with the new "Standard Pressure Lower Recoil Flash suppressed HVY 38 SPL" Buffalo Bore stuff. I would say that felt recoil is about 50% of what it is with the same revolver shooting Buffalo Bore +P ammo. Its amazing that when you slow the bullet down 150 fps, you get so much less felt recoil.Tim, is that the 150 gr.?

If so, it's sounding pretty good to me for my 642.

Nem

Jim March
April 14, 2007, 04:59 AM
That text would equally well describe the new Buffalo Bore 158 standard pressure and 150 standard pressure. Recoil should be pretty similar between them. The BuffBore 125gr standard pressure slug might recoil less than the 150 or 158, if you are VERY recoil sensitive.

The 150 is a hardcast, non-expanding "full wadcutter" meaning flat faced - the flat nose is a full .357cal width or close to it. The bullet is shaped like a pure cylinder, flat on both ends or might be hollow at the back. Probably flat base. Either way, basically, a "big splat" effect. It's hardcast both for accuracy and so that the nose stays sharply cylindrical in target for maximum "splat" on (and inside) the target.

The 158 is softcast, expanding, hollowpoint, same power level as the 150. Also the same bullet as the 158+P that this thread was started for, just loaded a bit milder. Bullet energy will be similar to the Remington 158+P and since we have miles of test data saying that round works, this should too.

The 150 is, according to Tim, a bit more accurate than the 158. Shouldn't be by a huge amount, esp. in snubbies, but it should be noticeable in most guns.

Which is more damaging to the target, your guess is as good as mine. I would place bets on the 158 myself BUT if the accuracy gain with the 150 is significant, that may be nice enough to outweigh my feelings about damage on target.

I sure as hell wouldn't want to be hit by either.

Years ago a few small ammo houses sold full wadcutter slugs loaded to serious power. Since then they have been loaded to very wimpy "target" power levels and used for years to train newbie shooters because the recoil is so mild. Hot-loaded full wadcutters have been a trick a few handloaders have clung to; Tim and BuffBore have finally brought the concept back to store-bought ammo and while they were at it, hardcast them for good measure.

Nematocyst
April 14, 2007, 05:05 AM
The 150 is a hardcast, non-expanding "full wadcutter" meaning flat faced - the flat nose is a full .357cal width or close to it. The bullet is shaped like a pure cylinder, flat on both ends or might be hollow at the back. Probably flat base. Either way, basically, a "big splat" effect. It's hardcast both for accuracy and so that the nose stays sharply cylindrical in target for maximum "splat" on (and inside) the target.

<snip>

The 150 is, according to Tim,
a bit more accurate than the 158.

<snip>

Which is more damaging to the target,
your guess is as good as mine.

<snip>

I sure as hell wouldn't want to be hit by either.Me either.

Right now, I'm leaning towards the 150's.

Stainz
April 14, 2007, 06:11 AM
When I bought my 296 (5-shot .44 Special Airweight - a 19 oz version of a 642 on steroids!), over four years ago, I immediately determined the boot grips to be too small and hurtful. I was still 'enjoying' my .454 Casull SRH back then - and the 296 hurt my hand worse than those Hornady 240gr XTP's - at 1,985 fps from that 7.5" SRH (>2,100 ft-lbs)! A simple recycling of my 696's rounded UM's combats - covering that humpback's backstrap - and it became much more shootable... downright fun, as it was quite accurate with it's 200gr GDHP (805 fps) diet. Of course, it was too big for a pocket... and had to be holstered on a belt, it's lite weight still being appreciated. It joined my 2" 10 in that role.

Six months back found me replacing those UM's with the original boots... and back to my pocket. I was back to carrying it a bit more. Then - I finally bought another .38 snubby - a 642 - and some excellent Mika's pocket holsters for the 296 & 642. Both are now my 'Doomsday' guns - meant for carry - for emergencies - and sport their OEM boot grips - and get carried much more often than ever before. They don't have to be comfortable to shoot - just comfortable to carry, present quickly, and control well enough to place COM shots fairly quickly. I will keep 'up' on their use - but resist the temptation to 'plink' with them... my 6" 66 is perfect for the latter (I'd hate to have to stuff THAT into a pocket!).

Of course, you can take this 'Shooting a snubby aint supposed to be fun...' dictum too far. I did have to try one of those 10-11 oz (340?) Al/Sc/Ti .357M with some hot .357M's - ONCE! That brought tears to my eyes - and those not-so-nautical terms I learned so many years back in the Navy to my mouth. I guess the adrenalin 'rush' from a bg 'event' would mask that feeling. I've shot .454's, .475L's, & .500 S&W Magnums - none compared to that. In fact, the second place for me, for actual 'pain' in shooting, was a .50 AE DEII... not from the initial recoil, that just isn't bad at all. But... when that rotating bolt's mass suddenly halts upon reaching it's rearward limit - and transferring that rotational inertia to your wrist - it will really hurt - especially if you are 'enjoying' carpal tunnel problems. Naw, a 642 with 'FBI' loads - and OEM boots - is fine for a 'Doomsday' protector.

Stainz

TonyB
April 14, 2007, 10:18 AM
This is why I love this forum.....where else can you get this kind of info?
I'll stick w/ the gold dot 135's...they're stout enough:D

Plink
April 14, 2007, 03:57 PM
The DPX is a contender in 38+P, but it needs the +P part to expand. It's true though, the copper construction delays expansion enough to get a deep punch.


Actually, they were getting perfect expansion at non +P velocites too. In fact they released the load to the public then stopped selling it. In a conversation with one of their reps, he mentioned that they needed the extra velocity for stability. The non +P loads keyholed from shorter barrels. Copper being less dense than lead, just wasn't stable enough at lower velocities.

The DPX loads do work amazingly well for cartridges not known as good expanders/penetrators, such as .38 Spl, .44 Spl and .380. I'll stick to lead cored bullets in calibers with a bit more punch. I do carry the DPX in my short barreled .44 Spl when I carry it.

Jim March
April 14, 2007, 04:25 PM
Interesting. Still, for our purposes, what it means is "38Spl DPX" is going to be a +P option. A good one, too, but still +P.

The Lone Haranguer
April 14, 2007, 10:37 PM
IMO it matters little how powerful your ammunition is if A - you can't hit the target, and B - you won't practice with it if it is painful or even debilitating to shoot (which goes back to point A). I would save the hot stuff for a steel medium-frame revolver.

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