Lightweight .357 Snub Nose For SD


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CTGunner
May 25, 2010, 09:28 PM
Are you shooting .38s or .357s? And what is your preferred load?

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jmortimer
May 25, 2010, 09:48 PM
I use standard pressure 150 hard cast wadcutter from Buffalo Bore and here is why
http://www.brassfetcher.com/Buffalo%20Bore%20Ammunition%20150gr%20standard%20pressure%20Hard%20Cast%20Wad%20Cutter.html
Two feet of penetration, very low recoil, and highest accuracy. Great combination not to mention maximum meplat.

CTGunner
May 25, 2010, 09:51 PM
why?

jmortimer
May 25, 2010, 09:54 PM
Sorry - I hit submit before I pasted link.

CTGunner
May 25, 2010, 10:07 PM
Impessive. But what would a .357 cartridge with the same bullet produce. I'm assuming not enough to justify the difference in recoil in your opinion?

jmortimer
May 25, 2010, 11:50 PM
You can get the hard cast wadcutters from Beartooth Bullets or Oregon Trails Laser Cast over 1,200 fps (even over 1,400 fps with a gas check) but as you indicate you pay the price in recoil. Even at 900 fps out of a 1 7/8" barrel the Buffalo Bore will shoot through a bad guy. The standard pressure Buffalo Bore just makes sense to me especially in a 13 ounce .357 J Frame. This is what got me thinking about this and deciding on the 150 grain Buffalo Bore and loading practice rounds with 148 grain Laser Cast or Beartooth for practice at similar velocity (4.6 grains of Unique).
http://www.handgunsmag.com/ammunition/HG_wickedwadcutters_200901/

Erik M
May 25, 2010, 11:53 PM
i prefer standard pressure .38 wadcutters and semi wadcutters, around 150 grains.

megatronrules
May 26, 2010, 02:45 PM
I have a S&W 340PD that weighs 14oz loaded its reallt light. I use remington golden saber .357 magnums in the 125gr weight. I also have a set of crimson trace 405 laser grips they have an air pocket on the rear of the grips and It helps a lot with felt recoil.

I can do a whole box (25 rounds) of the golden sabers before I'm done. That being said the gun is not pleasant to shoot,but it is controllable and I can keep my follow up shots on COM at 5-7 yards. Its not a range gun but it is a gun that is great for what it is intended for.

As to the other question as far as .357 being no better or better than .38 +p in a snub nose. Well I don't feel this is the case although it is true neither is at their best in a snub nose the .357 has a definite advantage even in a snub. There is nothing wrong with a .38 +p at all its just in my mind I'll take any advantage I can get when it comes to survival. If you can handle the .357 as well as a .38+p then I'd say use it. If not them I wouldn't lose sleep over carrying. Good .38 +p load for protection.

snooperman
May 26, 2010, 03:26 PM
Federal power-shok 125 gr JHP.

snooperman
May 26, 2010, 03:28 PM
a 357 magnum load.

S&Wfan
May 29, 2010, 12:35 AM
I much prefer a .38 Special load in any Airweight (lightweight) aluminum J-frame. It is the best overall combination of effectiveness and top-performance (speed+accuracy) in rapid, double action use.

IMHO, shot placement is "king," and power ain't even "queen!" In that sudden moment of "Oh Sh__, this guy is trying to kill me," when you draw to protect your life two things will rule supreme. First, you will shoot fast and double action until the threat kills you or you stop the threat. Second, your second shot needs to be on the mark and it needs to come as soon as possible behind the second. That fast, ACCURATE second shot is much harder to make in fastest time when the gun is shooting a big flame out the front and the barrel is pointing skyward as the torque twists the grip in your hand so the revolver is no longer in the same position in your grip!!!

As another experienced poster put in a lot less words, I load my little Airweight with flatnose wadcutters too, and they are loaded as .38 Special rounds too. Wonderful accuracy and faster followup rounds with accuracy.

If you can, try to shoot some bowling pin matches and see what happens to folks who are shooting at the extreme limits of their double-action abilities, yet have to absolutely nail the pins dead on against the clock. Controlling the recoil and getting the front sight back on the target quickly . . . as well as nailing the target wins virtually every time vs. the guy shooting flames out the end of his skyward-pointing muzzle!

At this very moment my S&W M37 Airweight is in its pocket holster, stoked with the legendary accuracy of 148 grain flat-nose wadcutters . . . and for very good reasons. It is a wise choice, but doesn't sell magazine advertiser goods so the gun writers talk about the expensive "boutique" hollowpoint ammo.

One day I'll bet you'll understand too. Best wishes!


PS: Another bad thing about .357 Magnum ammo is generally a very bright/big flame . . . never a good thing for your eyes to endure and then be able to see where the bad guy went when you have to protect yourself in the dark . . . the most likely time you'll be surprised by a predator. Keep the flash, bang and recoil low . . . and keep your speed and multiple shot accuracy performance UP by sticking to .38 Spl. ammo in your light little .357 (or .38Spl./only) revolvers for best results!

Mr. Happy
June 10, 2010, 05:52 PM
Now that Hornady makes the Critical Defense in 38, 38+P, and 357, I had to try all three in my S&W340PD. I have the CT grips with the recoil pocket.

38 and 38+P - good control and accuracy.

357 - oooh. Black and blue web of hand after 10 rounds. Accuracy down on follow-up shots out of anticipation of the recoil.

I'm carrying the 38+P.

PS - these were shot in daylight, so I cannot comment on muzzle flash.

Maj Dad
June 10, 2010, 06:15 PM
I like the basic heavy lead SWC in either (38 or 357). Back in the 60's & early 70's, lots of shooters loaded the old hollow base WC base up for SD. They were soft & expansion was impressive. I figure a hard bullet (=/> 12 RC) at a certain velocity is just that. Doesn't matter who makes it - you or a manufacturer. I buy bullets from MBC & Penn, and really like them and their performance, and I also cast my own, so I have a wide selection. I use RCBS's 150 gr SWC and Lee's 158 gr FP, plus MBC's 158 SWC. PLUS... lots of jacketed varieties. Hit someone with any of them, at full-load velocity, and you will make an impression. Placement is more important than design, when you get down to basics. If you hit someone in the arm with the best bullet available at +P velocity, you still winged him, and he can return fire.

My 2 cents...
:cool:

Taildragger-J3
June 10, 2010, 08:10 PM
I carry & shoot a lightweight .38. I've got Corbon +P's in it at the moment, but I like some nice Speer Gold Dot 158 grain HP that I load below +P levels. They are dead on accurate, will stop whatever / whoever I hit in the 10 ring, and I can reload a boatload & get lots of practice. With that round I can put all 5 rounds in the 10 ring at 7 yards about as fast as I can pull the trigger. Never could hold a full-bore .357 that accurately, consistently.

Just my .02.

The Lone Haranguer
June 10, 2010, 08:13 PM
I don't recommend lightweight .357 Magnums. I found a S&W 640-1 (all stainless steel) quite strenuous to shoot with full powered magnums. If I had a lightweight snubnose revolver I would load it with .38 Specials regardless of the chambering, so why bother with the magnum chambering in the first place? I recommend magnums in a revolver with some weight to it such as the Ruger SP101.

Marvin KNox
June 11, 2010, 01:07 AM
You couldn't go too far wrong with a good FBI type load - regular or +p.

http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/38%20Special%20158gr%20LSWCHP.htm

You couldn't go too far wrong with the Speer 135 gr. .38+p for short barrels either, I suppose. Pretty well tested in gel and through denim as well.

I go with the DPX in .357. Doesn't kick much for a .357. Gives me a little extra over the .38's. Opens up every time and penetrates deep. I like a bullet that penetrates deep and yet mushrooms to over 1.5 times the diameter while doing it - as compared to a non opening lead round like a wadd cutter. The hollow point DPX is it for me.

http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/can_less_be_more.htm

http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/Corbon%20357%20Magnum%20125%20gr%20DPX%20Ammo.htm

http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/38vs357snub.htm

I practice with a cheap 125 gr. hp reload from Mastercast that replicates it close enough for practice.

http://www.mastercast.net/amo.htm

Find the one that will do the job and still be manageable for repeat shots (very important IMO). No reason, really, to go above the .38 if you find that you shoot a lot better with that for follow up shots.

Dollar An Hour
June 15, 2010, 03:44 AM
Remington Golden Sabre .357's out of my S&W 340 M&P snubby. More punch than a .38, with recoil that I was able to adapt to with enough practice.

Gold Dot SB .38's are another great load for snubbys.

Mr. Happy
June 15, 2010, 10:17 PM
I don't recommend lightweight .357 Magnums. I found a S&W 640-1 (all stainless steel) quite strenuous to shoot with full powered magnums. If I had a lightweight snubnose revolver I would load it with .38 Specials regardless of the chambering, so why bother with the magnum chambering in the first place? I recommend magnums in a revolver with some weight to it such as the Ruger SP101.
Because, in the case of the S&W 340PD, it's the lightest J-frame there is, whether rated for .38+P or .357Mag. 3 oz lighter, equivalent to a roll of quarters. Lighter means more likely to be carried, so more likely to save a life.

Dave T
June 16, 2010, 01:01 PM
Lighter means more likely to be carried, so more likely to save a life.

Except for scaring an attacker off, to save a life you have to hit what you are shooting at. My experience in running my own firearms training business for 10 years was that very, very few people can control (hit their intended target) any J-frame chambered and loaded with 357 Magnums. I was surprised at the number of people who couldn't actually control the lightweight and ultra-lightweight 5 shot 38 Specials with even +P 38s. Based on all I saw, the J-frame is a gun for experts, not beginners or casual shooters.

YMMV,
Dave

NG VI
June 18, 2010, 10:23 PM
I think the Speer 135 Short Barrel Magnums are a pretty low powered load, doesn't give much more than a hundred or so feet per second over the 135+P version, I bet that would be a great controllable choice.

Deaf Smith
June 19, 2010, 08:50 PM
Lightweight .357 Snub Nose For SD

How 'lightweight'?

If we are talking about a M66 2 1/2 Combat Magnum then I'd pick Buffalo Bore 158gr SWCHP at around 1100fps from the 2.5 inch barrel.

If we are talking about a titanimum .357, Say the 340 Smith I'd get some DPX .38s (cause man that super light weight gun is a bear with magnum ammo, especially if you have to shoot one handed.)

My Ruger Speed Six and Service Six are stolked with Buffalo Bore .38s, just like the ones above, but my 642,, being an airweight, has DPX.

If you can't control your weapon, one handed, then it is not really a good defensive handgun.

Deaf

CTGunner
June 19, 2010, 09:07 PM
How 'lightweight'? S&W Model 60LS.

Rexster
June 19, 2010, 09:52 PM
If I ever own another Airlite, I will use standard-pressure wadcutters, perhaps the Buffalo Bore load. My tolerance for +P goes no further than Airweight.

I can shoot any commercial magnum load through my SP101 snubbies without pain. My preferred load is the 145-grain Winchester Silvertip.

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