Stainless 5-Shots and Plus P


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Confederate
September 13, 2011, 01:30 AM
I have a Smith 60 (old version in new condition) and a Rossi 88 stainless. I've been told both will handle a limited diet of +P, but were either actually rated for the +P? I had an old 88 I used to shoot with federal Plus-P loads, rounds a Treasury agent gave me on occasion. It seemed to hold up just find.

Just don't want to risk my Model 60.

Thanks!

http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh198/jriler/Rossi88-3C.jpg

This Rossi 88 has never been fired, but is a safe queen. It's
got a 3-inch barrel and seems to be made at least as well as the
Smith Model 60.


http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh198/jriler/M60_3.jpg

This was my dad's Model 60. Beautiful, ain't it?

.

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AK_Maine_iac
September 13, 2011, 01:45 AM
I never had any problems with my 60 S&W. Back when we all carried wheel guns. Just as long as you don't feed it a steady diet of plus p ammo. I used it as a back up weapon when i was a LEO. Only put 100 or so plus p through her every years.

Tony_the_tiger
September 13, 2011, 01:51 AM
Smith & Wesson told me in regards to a model 10 rated for .38 special that it will take .38 special + p for defensive purposes but they advised me not to make it the standard round for extended range time. Your firearms look alot sturdier than that model 10 did. If I were you i'd shoot a couple off at the range and inspect the forcing cone/top strap/cylinder/action during cleaning afterwards. If nothing is out of time or appears to be worse for wear than I would load the +p for self defense.

On the other hand, corbon makes a .38 DPX round that looks quite capable and it is not loaded to +p pressures. That would be a useful alternative.

You could also purchase a firearm factory rated for +p ammunition.

Stainz
September 13, 2011, 11:10 AM
Call S&W customer service (1-800-331-0852) with that 60's s/n - they'll tell you if it can handle +P's. I believe that all 64/67 models - and recent 10's - can take +P.

Stainz

Confederate
December 5, 2011, 08:22 PM
Buying ammo has always been a horrible expense, and finding it has been horrible, too. I like ammo sold in 50 round boxes. When they begin selling them in 10- or 6-round lots, that's a little out of my budget.

The new 60s are rated for .357, and how they handle that is beyond me. The Ruger LCRs also are rated for +P and .357s depending on the model you have.

rcmodel
December 5, 2011, 09:25 PM
Back when the Model 36 and Model 60 came along, there was no such thing as +P ammo.

There was Hi-Speed loadings though, that would make some of todays .357 ammo seem somewhat tame.

S&W will tell you today they are not +P rated. Because thier lawyers told them so.

They told you in 1960 that even the Hi-Speed loads were safe and the gun would not blow up.
It would however, get loose sooner.

Shoot it.

As for the Rossi?
No comment.

rc

Stainz
December 5, 2011, 09:27 PM
The 'Magnum' 60's are a bit different - with a hammer forged frame with a different heat treatment for the Magnum pressures. It will last - within SAAMI spec's for the .357 Magnum - not hot rod levels. The Remington R38S12 +P 158gr LHPSWC is packaged in 50 round boxes - runs ~$36 list. Georgia Arms has a similar load in their line for a bit less - packed in a bag of 50 - with a tad harder lead - better suited for 3"-6" barrel's velocity.

Stainz

MCgunner
December 5, 2011, 09:29 PM
I think the difference is the added metal and probably better metallurgy.

Neither was originally +P rated. I had a 2" 88 and shot lots of 5.0 grain Unique/cast 158 in it. It handled that load, mildly +P, just fine. I have a 68 I mostly shoot wadcutter in, but have fired the same Unique load. That one doesn't have a high round count, though.

Hell, I have a Taurus M85 alloy/stainless 17 ounce gun that's +P rated. I'm thinkin' maybe SAAMI's +P rating is lower now days, not sure. I know the old .38/44 loads I wouldn't shoot in that gun or any J frame sized gun.

Gary A
December 6, 2011, 11:49 AM
McGunner, I defer to your knowledge in many things but I believe the SAAMI standard for plus P has actually gone UP. I remember it was always listed for years as 17,000 psi for standard .38 Special and 18,500 psi for plus P. Today, many sources indicate that plus P is 20,000 psi. Speer's excellent 135 grain +P load is listed in it's on technical specs as producing 21,500 psi Maximum Average Pressure though a Speer rep told me in an email that the pressure is held to 20,000 psi and 21,500 is "Probable Lot Mean".

I tend to suspect that an older J-frame sized revolver that could digest a reasonable diet of 158 grain lead semi-wadcutter hollowpoints at 18,500 psi would have a harder time with semi-jacketed hollowpoints at 20,000 psi or above.

It seems to me to be a subject that is hard to quantify and pin down securely.

CajunBass
December 6, 2011, 12:08 PM
I would like just once to get a chance to shoot a gun enough to worry about wearing it out.

Man, I would brag about it.

Gary A
December 6, 2011, 12:11 PM
LOL, CajunBass. A wise point, indeed!

Stophel
December 6, 2011, 12:34 PM
"S&W will tell you today they are not +P rated. Because thier lawyers told them so."

Exactly.

And "+P" loads are NOT particularly high pressure anyway. I keep them in my old 36. The gun is NOT going to blow up (well, not unless something else is seriously wrong!). It might beat the gun up over time, but that's it.

MCgunner
December 6, 2011, 12:38 PM
McGunner, It defer to your knowledge in many things but I believe the SAAMI standard for plus P has acually gone UP. I remember it was always listed for years as 17,000 psi for standard .38 Special and 18,500 psi for plus P. Today, many sources indicate that plus P is 20,000 psi. Speer's excellent 135 grain +P load is listed in it's on technical specs as producing 21,500 psi Maximum Average Pressure though a Speer rep told me in an email that the pressure is held to 20,000 psi and 21,500 is "Probable Lot Mean".

'Well, I honestly don't know, so I defer to you on this one. :D

Yeah, I go to the range, try to, at least twice a month, but I don't shoot every handgun I have. Some have been fired more'n others, a certain 9mm carry and, of course, my .22s. I have only worn ONE out and that was a brass framed '51 Navy I got in 73 when I was a student and didn't know I couldn't just stuff it full of 3f and it wouldn't live forever. :rolleyes:

PabloJ
December 6, 2011, 12:59 PM
I'm not going to comment on ammo suitability in those two guns, but .38+P loads from major American ammo companies are a joke (BS product designed to gain more shelf space).

pendennis
December 6, 2011, 01:06 PM
...printed in 1993.

Revolvers in which .38 Special +P ammunition can be used:

J frames - Models 60-4 (full underlug barrel only), 60-7, 60-8, 640, 649-2
K frames - Models 10, 13, 14, 15, 19, 64, 65, 66, 67
L frames - Models 581, 586, 681, 686
N frames - Models 27, 28, 627


Here is S&W's warning about +P ammunition -

"Plus P" (+P) ammunition generates pressures significantly in excess of the pressures associated with standard .38 Special ammunition. Such Pressures may affect the wear characteristics or exceed the margin of safety built into many revolvers and could therefore be DANGEROUS.

"Plus P" (+P) ammunition should not be used in medium (K frame) revolvers manufactured prior to 1958. Such pre-1958 medium (K frame) revolvers can be identified by the absence of a Model Number stamped inside the yoke cut of the frame (i.e. the area of the frame exposed when the cylinder is in the open position).

The "Plus-P-Plus" (+P+) marking on ammunition merely designates that it exceed established industry standards, but the designation does not represent defined pessure limits and therefore such ammunition may vary significantly as to the pressures generated. "Plus-P-Plus" (+P+) ammunition is not recommended for use in Smith & Wesson firearms.

jfh
December 6, 2011, 02:17 PM
One other factor to keep in mind: since 1983 the 'European' / CIP specification for 38 Special is the equivalent of 21,500 psi. IOW, they do not differentiate between 'standard' and 'plus-p' pressures.

Now, for the sake of discussion, do you think US mfrs--and others--have made any revolver that will not safely shoot--for extended periods--38 Special ammunition from Europe? Do you think the US revolver is not made to the same spec?

Then, there is that old question about the "original" 38 Special pressures. Wasn't an early specification for 38 Spl 'plus-p' set at 21,500?

I don't think there is a 'modern'--say, post 1970--revolver made that will not shoot these rounds safely. The question is, how long will the revolver last until it is loosened up (the frame stretched).

For reference: I have a modern (.38-.357) 640 which 1) had five seriously-overpressure rounds (probably 70000 psi) shot through it at about rounds 300; after S&W put in a new cylinder, I have gone on to shoot about 20,000 rounds through it. Perhaps 5 percent were 'standard 38' pressures; 70 percent were plus-p to CIP (European) pressures, another 15 percent were from about 22,000 to 27,000, and perhaps 10 percent were full-bore .357 Magnum loads.

S&W went over it at about 20,000--nothing changed, IIRC, just worked on the timing. (As you might suspect, the trigger is now to die for--perfectly stageable, or a very smooth pull through.)

Jim H.

rcmodel
December 6, 2011, 03:06 PM
The SAAMI .38 Spl +P rating system came about in 1974.
At that time standard pressure was lowered, +P was increased very slightly over what used to be standard pressure, and Hi-Speed ammo was dropped from production.

Prior to 1974:
The Standard pressure 158 LRN grain factory load was rated at 855 FPS.
The Hi-Speed load was rated at 1,090 FPS.

Under todays SAAMI standard, the same 158 grain load is rated at 755 FPS.
The +P is rated at 890 FPS.

As you can see, +P is no more likely to damage a modern gun then standard ammo was likely to damage it in 1970, or 1950, or 1930.

And it is way less likely to damage it then those old .38 Spl Hi-Speed loads that were much closer to todays .357 Mag then todays .38 Spl, either standard, or +P.

rc

bsms
December 6, 2011, 03:11 PM
If it is rated for 357 ammo at 40,000+ pressure, then why would shooting 38+P ammo at around 20,000 damage it?

Oh well. I bought my Model 60 new. With rubber grips, I'm fine shooting it with 357 ammo. If I ever have a problem, I'll ship it to S&W and trust they will make it right.

rcmodel
December 6, 2011, 03:20 PM
The OP has an older Model 60 .38 Special.

His is not a newer .357 Mag version.

rc

Confederate
December 6, 2011, 08:22 PM
Thanks for the replies.

Know that this older Rossi 88 is an outstanding gun. Whatever reputation they have today, I sold a lot of these little guns to cops and none was returned. I've owned several and have shot +P in some of my earlier guns with no ill effect. Still, I didn't shoot enough to loosen the guns. I was just curious if anyone had any problems in guns this size. The Rossi pictured has never been shot period, but it's a fine gun.

Again, thanks!

http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh198/jriler/255.jpg http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh198/jriler/256.jpg

http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh198/jriler/248.jpg http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh198/jriler/253.jpg

788Ham
December 7, 2011, 02:54 AM
" Don't talk to the police", both of those segments are very, very informative! Thanks for posting.

Sport45
December 7, 2011, 04:02 AM
I carry +P in my 36 no-dash and shot a cylinder full just to see how it feels. But all my practice is with standard pressure stuff.

I think this is the first time I've heard a Rossi called a safe queen. I used to know a guy who kept a Rossi that had never been fired in his truck. But I always chalked that up to foolishness. Luckily he never needed to find out if it actually worked...

RIP, Don.
(natural causes)

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