Gold dot ammo in the 38 cal. K frame


September 22, 2011, 04:14 PM
I wonder will the above will harm the model 15 combat masterpiece?
I have some 38 cal. gold dot ammo I think 135 Gr. HP +P ammo :I have the model 15 that I only shoot soft lead out of for range work only great gun for target work but may carry it during hunting season as a side arm

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Vern Humphrey
September 22, 2011, 04:20 PM
I sincerely doubt you will harm a K-frame with that or any other .38 Special ammo.

September 22, 2011, 04:58 PM
You will run out of money shooting GDHP before you will run out of gun, IMHO. Even if you are wealthy. Don't sweat it.

September 22, 2011, 05:06 PM
Todays +P .38 is no hotter then standard pressure .38 Spl was 35-40 years ago.
And certainly not nearly as hot as the old .38 Hi-Speed loads.

As others have said, have your way with the Gold Dot.
It won't hurt a thing.


September 22, 2011, 05:25 PM
thank you guys for the reply
I carry them in My J frame off duty for defence ammo
I had a Buddie give me 3 boxes price FREE
I may just carry the model 15 as a side arm during hunting season

September 22, 2011, 07:36 PM
The posters are right, .38 Spl used to be loaded hotter then today. My older manuals are at least 2 gr over present day loads.

I doubt you could find a present day cartridge in that chambering that would hurt the mod 15.

September 22, 2011, 07:42 PM
I just pick this one up a few months back I can say it is a sweet gun to shoot ;
I tested it with some 158 Semi-RN soft lead Man I can only say it will knockout the X ring at 15 yards all day long: two hand hold combat style
I had one way back in the early 70's in blue another great gun but stupid of me I sold it
I was not looking for one but when I seen it I jump on it

September 23, 2011, 02:08 PM
"+P" is nothing but marketing hype.

In the 60's and before "+p" would have been considered a standard load.

Some people say "I would not shoot +P out of anything that is not rated for .357" or that "every now and then is okay, but I don't floor my car at every stoplight"

Please ignore the hysteria.

"+P" is regular .38 ammo. The "regular" ammo is the emasculated stuff.

Facts are facts

PT Barnum was right...but don't be one of the suckers he was talking about.

September 23, 2011, 02:35 PM
I have several K-frames and have shot hot +P loads in them for almost 50 years now with no problems at all.

September 23, 2011, 03:03 PM
I have a great 38 sp. that was made in 1954 and I shoot + p . I don,t go to range with a couple of hundred of them. But I do pop them off here and there. I don,t have any problems.

September 23, 2011, 08:26 PM
I wish I could afford to, and had the time to try to wear out a Model 15.

September 24, 2011, 12:31 AM
Why would you think it'd hurt your 15?

September 24, 2011, 11:23 AM
Why would you think it'd hurt your 15?

my guess is because of the marketing hype and the ignorant people that act like +P .38 specials are "hot".

Lone Star
September 24, 2011, 08:39 PM
Maybe he knew that the USAF cited problems with Plus P ammo as a key reason why they wanted 9mm autos to replace the Model 15 S&W?

But their load was not a factory offering, and was hotter.

Still, if you shoot a lot of Plus P, you may see cylinder endshake sooner. That's probably especially likely if you use Buffalo Bore or Cor-Bon ammo, which really is hotter. But you don't need that power level everyday. Just use it when appropriate, like for defense or for shooting coyotes and the like.

Your gun and your wallet will prefer standard speed ammo over the long run, for simple target and plinking needs.

September 24, 2011, 09:05 PM
My confusion lies in LW carrying them in a small J-Frame & then wondering if they'd be harmful in the larger K-Frame. :)

Lone Star
September 24, 2011, 09:36 PM

I see your point. But maybe he had in mind cylinder wall thickness. The bolt cut location, as you know, allows more steel in the chambers in a J-frame five-shooter. Elmer Keith reviewed those when they came out and mentioned the added strength. But I think he erred in telling readers that even .38-44 ammo was okay in them, although it wouldn't blow a cylinder.

Modern factory Plus P is okay in any S&W with a model number, says the factory, and many use it in older guns. Colt once said that alloy frames like the Cobra needed to be inspected by the factory after 1,000 rounds of Plus P. Steel Detective Specials needed to be in the doctor's office for a checkup after 3,000 rounds. Ruger has never worried about Plus P use. Their .38's have always been more than strong enough for it.

I realize that you surely know this, but post it for others who may not.

September 24, 2011, 11:13 PM

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