3D Police 38spl Ammo - What Did I Buy This Time?


Joshua M. Smith
July 26, 2007, 06:20 PM
Hello All,

I was at the gunstore looking for 000 buck (they're out) when I ran across some 3D ammunition. This stuff is SJHP, and the box is not labeled as "+P". However, some of the caseheads are.

It was interesting, so I bought it. Now I just need to know what it is - is it remanufactured, or did 3D buy a bunch of brass from different sources? Except for the headstamps, they all look uniform - that is, they all have the same bullet and the same bright nickel case.

Does anyone know how old these are, and how hot? Is it safe for non- +P 38 revolvers? What the heck did I buy?

Here is the top of the box... police cartidges? Maybe that explains the lack of headstamp consistency?

The front of the box...

Some headstamp samples. Notice one says "+P". That's confusing.

The back of the box says this:

3 - D POLICE CARTRIDGES are manufactured to rigid specifications, utilizing American-made, specially selected components, non-corrosive priming and modern smokeless powder. Bullets are specially designed for minimum leading and superior accuracy. Automatic production machinery is used exclusively throughout loading operation. Carbide dies and taper crimp provide maximum case life. These cartridges are adapted to all standard arms chambered for .38 special caliber and are guaranteed to perform satisfactorily.

Any ideas, gents?


Josh <><

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Pistol Toter
July 26, 2007, 07:20 PM
3D Investment Inc, Donaphin NE; there are only two hits on Google something about a cancellation of a registration "COYOTEE" back in May 2005. There is no way of telling what or who they are. You might do a search through an on-line phone book and give them a call. It loks like they could have been reloading brass by the example of the headstamps that you presented. Have you ask the store where you bought the munnitions. I'd be a little skeptical of firing that stuff until I knew more about it. P.T.

July 26, 2007, 07:32 PM
looks like reloaded/remanufactured ammo to me. Doesn't mean it's bad or good.

Black Knight
July 26, 2007, 09:35 PM
When I was in private security years ago the company bought this ammo for state required qualification. It is factory reloads and the dirtiest ammo I ever had the experience to shoot. It took almost twice as long to clean my duty weapon with ammo than any other ammo I used. It was cheap and that is why the company bought it. They bought it by the case for about two years and switched to Impact which was much cleaner.

Jim Watson
July 26, 2007, 10:07 PM
3D was one of the early high volume commercial reloaders.
"Remanufactured" is kind of a nice way of saying bulk reloaded, explaining the mixed headstamps. I think their operation was acquired by Master Cartridge.
It ought to shoot ok.

July 26, 2007, 10:50 PM
I used to sale 3D products back when I first started. It was decent stuff to shoot but a little dirty.

I found half a case of the 45 in my attic last week. Most was 230gr lrn but a few boxes were 185 jhp. I had four failure to feed in my 4506 with the lead bullets. The lead is dry and looks almost white. I think it has been up there since 1997 or so. The ammo was mild and I had no problems shooting my 50 round State LE qualification shoot from 7,15 and 25 yards.

July 26, 2007, 11:37 PM
We used to sell cases and cases of 3-D ammo when it was available.
It was the Wolf of the time.

It was always safe and fairly mild and a local Police Department used to contract with us for range ammunition.

$12.25 a box is way, way too high a price for this stuff.
We would buy if for $3.50 a box or $70.00 a case freight paid on 10,000 or more rounds, sold it for $5.50 a box and would give 50 cents a box rebate on returned brass.

July 27, 2007, 08:54 AM
Since you pictured a whole bunch of different headstamped cases, that has to be reloaded or remanufactured ammo.

Pic had several 'flavors' of Federal, and a Winchester-Western case.

July 27, 2007, 12:22 PM
I have used this in my .38/.357 K Frame at 125 grn. and didn't think it was all that bad. Never had a misfire or extra powder from the stuff. It was remanufactured Ammo. It at least said so on the boxes that I got. The only thing that was a little discouraging was the fact that I couldn't get my sights to bring up the lead. It fired a little low over 50 ft. It did lead the barrel a little bit more.

Jim March
July 27, 2007, 07:32 PM
It shouldn't be a safety problem, but...+P cases often have slightly different case capacity from standard pressure. Which in turn can affect performance.

Not nearly enough to cause a Kaboom, but I'd bet you'll see an interesting velocity spread if you chrony them. That in turn isn't optimum for accuracy.

It's sure not something I'd trust my life to on defense...it's pure range fodder at best.

Average Joe
July 27, 2007, 09:33 PM
Yes, they are reloads, I've shot them many times. A little Smokey but ok.

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