.38 Special defensive ammo?


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Taffnevy
August 27, 2011, 07:17 PM
What's the best?

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Super Sneaky Steve
August 27, 2011, 07:20 PM
Buffalo Bore Heavy .38 special +P by far the best! Not for the faint of heart or weak wristed wussies.

wrs840
August 27, 2011, 07:22 PM
I think it depends on barrel length. I use Remington R38S12 +P 158gr. LSWCHP in barrels 2-1/2" and shorter. I'm undecided for longer barrels.

bikemutt
August 27, 2011, 07:25 PM
Hornady Critical Defense.

Can't say I've ever used it, hope I never do. But it's available and affordable enough to touch a few rounds from time to time for practice.

Taffnevy
August 27, 2011, 07:54 PM
I just picked up one of the S&W Model 10 police trade-ins from Buds. Can that safely handle +P?

armoredman
August 27, 2011, 07:59 PM
I've been using the old standby 158gr Winchester LSWCHP +P, and I think it will work. :)

Wolfeye
August 27, 2011, 08:02 PM
I use handloads or whatever's cheap for 90% of my shooting, but my defensive ammo is Cor-Bon .38+p DPX.

16shells
August 27, 2011, 08:29 PM
Often the "best" is gun dependent. The 158gr by Remington and Buffulo Bore (both mentioned in previous posts) are accurate in my snub nosed LCR and SP101. Your particular weapon might prefer something different.

jon86
August 27, 2011, 08:34 PM
Remington R38S12 +P 158gr. LSWCHP

I carry these. With luck, I will never know if they work well. Also try the speer gold dot short barrel 135 grain +p.

GP100Wii
August 28, 2011, 12:55 AM
I keep the federal Hydrashok stored for this purpose.

ArchAngelCD
August 28, 2011, 01:01 AM
There is no such thing as "the best ammo" because every gun is different. What shoots well in my revolver may group like a shotshell pattern for you. Most SD ammo made today is made with a high quality bullet that will do what it was designed to do. Find the ammo you can shoot well and stick with it... (I usually shoot the Remington FBI Load mentioned several times above)

Lawdawg45
August 28, 2011, 08:35 AM
"Hornady Critical Defense.

Can't say I've ever used it, hope I never do. But it's available and affordable enough to touch a few rounds from time to time for practice."

Must agree with bikemutt. My J-Frame is loaded with them now, and I've used the rifle version (Leverevolution) for Deer hunting.

LD45

Jonah71
August 28, 2011, 09:22 AM
I keep the federal Hydrashok stored for this purpose.
Same here. I even carry some in one of my 9mm's.

Dogguy
August 28, 2011, 09:53 AM
While I'm one of those people who doesn't believe there's a "best" anything, I can't believe no one has yet mentioned Speer 135 gr. +P Gold Dots. While they were specifically developed for maximum performance in snubbies, it apparently performs just as well in longer barrels. According to some sources, the GDHP's performance has been on a par with the longtime favorite .38 Special FBI load (158 gr +P SWCHP).

For a standard pressure .38 Special, the Federal 125 gr. Nyclad HP (AKA "Chief's Special") has a pretty good reputation.

But, again, I don't think these loads or any other load would be the best under all circumstances. There are too many variables involved in self defense situations for anything to be 100% all the time. Shoot the load that you and your gun shoots the best.

skoro
August 28, 2011, 10:03 AM
What's the best?

The one you can fire most accurately and effectively from the firearm you carry. Seems to me there are quite a few good SD rounds on the market and any of them will do the trick, if needed. Experiment and see which works best for you.

Gold Dot
Golden Saber
Winchester PDX
Hornady Critical Defense
the trusty ol' FBI load

And then there's "designer" ammo from Buffalo Bore, Double Tap, and Cor Bon.

It's all good. The best is what works for you.

Pict
August 28, 2011, 11:06 AM
I dig 125gn Nyclad in the snubbies. Hydrashock in longer barrels.

Heavies
August 28, 2011, 12:20 PM
"Hornady Critical Defense.

Can't say I've ever used it, hope I never do. But it's available and affordable enough to touch a few rounds from time to time for practice."

Must agree with bikemutt. My J-Frame is loaded with them now, and I've used the rifle version (Leverevolution) for Deer hunting.

LD45

Do you folks like the +P or the regular load. I have been keeping my newly acquired 65-3 loaded with the standard pressure. I really like the way it shoots and very manageable recoil.

I tried the 140 grain .357 magnum load and it is very fun out doors, but in the home I think it would be way, way too much. I'd end up deaf and blind if I had to use it. Not to mention the neighbors might catch slugs.:eek:

MICHAEL T
August 28, 2011, 12:25 PM
I've been using the old standby 158gr Winchester LSWCHP +P

wlewisiii
August 28, 2011, 03:28 PM
Buffalo Bore 158 gr LSWCHP +P

Nothing better in .38 Special.

zxcvbob
August 28, 2011, 03:50 PM
I think it's all good except for 158 grain FMJ and LRN.

I mostly use 158 grain soft lead hollowpoints, and sometimes 148 grain DEWC's or 125 grain JHP's.

beatledog7
August 28, 2011, 03:57 PM
I regularly practice with both Hornady Critical Defense (in regular pressure, not +P) and Federal Nyclad, and I normally carry five of either in my 642 and ten more in speed strips. If those ever get two expensive to allow sufficient practice I'll shift to home-loaded 125gr SWCs or JHPs.

sidheshooter
August 28, 2011, 05:45 PM
I carry these. With luck, I will never know if they work well. Also try the speer gold dot short barrel 135 grain +p.
This. I like the Remmy due to having a couple of shorter tubes in my collection. Any maker's version of the old 158 LSWHP+P in 4" will do for my needs though.

@taffnevy: that 10 from buds will run more +P than most shooters will. I have put thousands of +P (including at least a thousand of this old corbon +P+ version of the 158 load at 1000fps that they used to sell) out of the stainless version, and it's tighter than I am at this point, by a fair margin. The buffalo bore "heavy" load in absurd abundance *might* get to your 10 over the years, but unless you have a trust funder's finances and spare time, you can't kill your K with big box +P loads. JMO.

masterofchaos
August 28, 2011, 06:21 PM
Taffnevy - I was looking at an S&W Model 10 yesterday and specially asked if it took +P. This gun was circa 1950s, and the salesman replied "No." Stick with hollow point .38. I just bought HORNADY CRITICAL DEFENSE HANDGUN AMMO .38 SPCL 110GR CD/25 @ $16.99 each from Cabelas for my 1969 Colt Cobra 38 Spec.

Warp
August 28, 2011, 06:22 PM
http://i54.photobucket.com/albums/g105/austin3161324/bb0a80b0.jpg


Buffalo Bore 158gr LSWCHP +P. And, if you are like me, some slightly larger soft rubber grips that cover the backstrap. It still fits in my shorts pockets alright but can show a little of the bottom of the grip. It's all worth it since it no longer hurts to shoot. (for an airweight or lighter snub nose, that is)


Failing that any of the "FBI load" 158 semi wadcutters. Or the Speer 135 +P short barrel Gold Dot

SemperFi10mm
August 28, 2011, 10:06 PM
+1 for critical defense...

sixgunner455
August 28, 2011, 10:41 PM
A Model 10 S&W will be ticking along, barring neglect or serious abuse, long after you are done. I have an M&P that was made in 1930, and served with a state law enforcement agency until the late 1990's, when I bought it as surplus, much as the gun you just bought got traded in.

Still fine, and has the best trigger on a K frame I've ever shot. Looks like heck, with little finish left on the right side, but shoots any sane load just fine. No telling how many thousands of loads have run through it.

I have no real preference in carry loads, so long as they are not RNL or FMJ. SWCHP, SWC, WC, JHP, all will do the job, so long as you put the pellet where it goes. The Model 10 is as accurate a service revolver as has been made, and will put the bullets where you point the weapon.

amprecon
August 28, 2011, 11:58 PM
I have a 10-5 and Remington 158gr. swc shoot very nicely out of it.

scottishclaymore
August 29, 2011, 09:52 PM
Buffalo Bore 158 gr LSWCHP +P

Nothing better in .38 Special.

I'll second that. I have it loaded in three different .38 specials, not to mention quite a variety of speedloaders.

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