Sellier & Bellot 158 gr. LRN for S.D.


September 15, 2008, 06:50 PM
Anyone use Sellier and Ballot 158 gr. LRN for S.D.
This load has great baistics 997 fps and 349 ft lbs.
This is far greater energy than most 38 special loads.
Anyone done test ?
How would this work in a 2 inch barrel.

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September 15, 2008, 07:03 PM
That would not be my choice - very little energy transfer with that load.

September 15, 2008, 07:04 PM
Though it may not be my first choice, I sure as h*ll would not feel unarmed with it in my S.D. gun. I am guessing the 2" performance would be some what less- 200-250 fpe. The listed ballistics are probably from a 6" non-vented test barrel. On the performance curve, this round would be on the high penetration side of things, which can be good or bad, depending on your situation.

September 15, 2008, 07:05 PM
That sounds like a cheap plinking load to me, not SD.

The Lone Haranguer
September 15, 2008, 07:23 PM
For a range/practice load, sure. For self defense, you can do better than that. It is very improbable that you will get that velocity and energy from a two-inch barrel (and if you did it would kick like a mule), and almost any hollowpoint is more effective than a lead roundnose.

September 15, 2008, 07:26 PM

September 16, 2008, 04:47 AM
A 158gr LRN .38 Special when used long ago by many Police Departments was caller "The Widow Maker" and with good reason.

Just be aware, that 997 fps was achieved when fired from a 7.5" barrel. You won't get those velocities from a 4" barrel and even less from a 2" barrel. Also, that round is probably in the .38 Special +P pressure range but won't be marked +P because it's made overseas just like Fiocchi ammo.

If you're looking for some really hot standard pressure .38 Special lead rounds take a look at the stuff Buffalo Bore ( has. If you can shoot +P stuff take a look at DoubleTap ( ammo. It's hot but not that expensive when compared to Buffalo Bore, Speer and some of the others.

September 16, 2008, 11:18 AM
Well, it's certainly better than the 130gr. FMJs that everybody sells as "bargain" ammunition, but that's not saying much.

For self-defense with a .38 (or a .357 for that matter) I stick with the 158gr. LSWC-HP "FBI" type load. I've got the Federals, but Remington and Buffalo Bore are as good or better.

September 16, 2008, 11:47 AM
Echoing what everyone else said, I would avoid a LRN load like the plague for carry. What is wrong with something like the .38 Short Barrel Speer Gold Dot that can be had for cheap on gunbroker?

September 16, 2008, 12:15 PM
Just checked Gunbroker, the "good" seller for Gold Dots has gone up to 80.00 per 250 Gold Dots, plus 15.00 shipping, from 65.00 plus 15.00 or a little less just a few months ago. I wish I'd bought more when I did, but that still sounds like a good price.

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