.38 Special - Federal 158g LSWC-HP +P (38G)


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KBintheSLC
January 4, 2010, 07:18 PM
Hi Folks,

Just wondering if anyone here has ever chrono'd this ammo in their snubby. I picked up a bunch of it for cheap recently, and I am thinking of replacing the costly Buffalo Bore 158g LSWC-HP load I currently carry. The Federal 38G seems to have similar specs as the "standard" non+P load from Buffalo Bore.

Other thoughts on the performance of this load? It seems like the lead is not as soft as the Buffalo Bore loading... wonder if it will expand as well at lower velocities?

I have to admit, I like getting 50 rounds for $17 a lot more than paying $22 for only 20 Buffalo Bore rounds.

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Ed Harris
January 5, 2010, 08:17 AM
Federal 38G should chronograph in the range of 820-850 f.p.s. from a 2-inch revolver, depending upon the barrel-cylinder gap. This ammo is generally equivalent to the Winchester X38SPD or Remington R38S12, but was discontinued about ten years ago. The lead alloy used is a bit harder than that used in the Remington load, which is better in snubbys. Best expansion will be when fired in a 3 inch or longer barrel, but if your 2-inch snubby has a cylinder gap of no more than 0.006" it will expand some. It is good ammo, but it will not further improve with age.

sheepdog
January 5, 2010, 08:55 AM
...the same round at Georgia Arms...we bought a thousand and a LOT cheaper than the Fed, Winch, Rem in this area....if you can buy 50 rounds of that round at $17---I gotta know WHERE...I was paying $28 2 years ago for Rem(softest lead of the three)

KBintheSLC
January 5, 2010, 01:35 PM
Ed,
Good info... I may have to test a few rounds for expansion... my BC gap is about 0.007 (go figure, new S&W 637). I am betting it will fare around the low 800's with this stuff.

Sheepdog,
Unfortunately, I can't point you in the right direction via the internet. This deal was found locally at Gallensons Gun Shop in downtown Salt Lake City. They have a ton of this in stock right now for $16.99/50 pack.

M2 Carbine
January 5, 2010, 01:54 PM
Just wondering if anyone here has ever chrono'd this ammo in their snubby.
Using a PACT chronograph.

747 fps from a 3 inch Rossi.
810 fps from a 3 inch S&W J Frame

I think I have figures for the 2 inch barrel but can't find them.

Ed Harris
January 5, 2010, 03:04 PM
You can expect in the .38 Special a 10 f.p.s. change in velocity for each 0.001" difference in cylinder gap. In practical terms this means that a 2 inch gun having a minimum cylinder gap of 0.003 could produce velocities comparable to a 4-inch gun built to the mean assembly tolerance of 0.006" or of a 6-inch gun at maximum tolerance of 0.008"

But excessive tight cylinder gap is to be avoided on a carry gun, especially one used with lead bullet or +P ammunition, because it only takes a wee bit of leading or one particle of unburned powder lodging under the extractor to lock up a gun.

You don't want to shoot jacketed ammo in a revolver having more than 0.008" gap because it increases the risk of sticking a bullet in the barrel. Revolvers which have more than 0.010" cylinder gap after removal of all cylinder end shake should have the barrel set back and refaced.

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