supra, if anyone is interested. The Speer # 8 158-gr 4756 loading (the starting load, BTW!) that Jim mentions I posted on actually exceeded 1k fps from a 1 7/8" snub. It did 1185 fps from a 3" and 1215 from a 4". This load pre-dated the 1973 SAAMI specs for the .38 Special, and would certainly be in the .38/44 category. A friend had it professionally tested by a powder company, and told me that it peaked at 23,000 psi - not the 40k, that Jim mentions. I would not recommend it for .38 Special revolvers, though I've certainly shot it in some of mine. Everyone who handloads has to assume responsibility for his own actions. JellyJar's historical recitation is a little off: there was no designation of ".38 Special +P" until 1973, though .38 Special ammo of greater-than-usual power had been made since at least the '30s as ".38/44" and ".38 Special Hi-Speed" ammo. Certainly he is correct in saying that there were cartridges in the .38 Special +P range prior to WWII.