Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Redcoat3340, Aug 31, 2022.
I did try making "sleeves" out of spent WRF cases to put over .22 LR cartridges, as I have heard of doing, but it didn't work out for me. Don't remember now what the problem was, but yeah, didn't work.
I'll be at my LGS tomorrow, Tues 9/6 to put some money down on the PP...and then wait the 6 or so days for the ok here in WA state.
Looking forward to getting this one....
I've got two S&W "Hand Ejector" revolvers (.32 Long). One was my maternal Pap's, so I don't want to shoot it. Just bought another one to shoot take to range and plink. I've not been to the range with it yet.
Though not a decent self-defense round, you can buy ammo from Buffalo Bore (BB) that makes the most out of one of these small revolvers. BB does NOT load these hot due to the condition of most of these revolvers. BB prices are very high and the shipping prices kick you in the shins 'till you bleed. I took the financial abuse and bought a couple of boxes of cartridges loaded with hard cast full wadcutters. BB uses powders best suited to this and they go for low-flash / low-report.
These are Buffalo Bore test results.
I'm gonna add a link to BB .32 Long (same as Colt) ammo. Too, I'm gonna put a link to a YouTube video wherein a guy tries-out BB wadcutters in .38 and in .32 -- he chronographs them then fires them into his terminal ballistics set-up. Regular wadcutter loads out of a .32 revolver w/4" barrel will usually not do over 700 fps ... if that ... on a good day. Buffalo Bore rounds will do 800fps even in a tiny 2" barrel! In a 4" barrel its spec.ed to do 900 fps That's a big jump in energy >170 ft.lbs vs. 100 ft.lb.s. I keep talking about wadcutters because in .38 snubbies and .32 revolvers, you're never going to get a bullet to expand. If they do expand, then they won't drive deep enough into the boiler-works. What to do? Use wadcutters. They do not push tissue and blood vessels aside (as do round-nose bullets). Wadcutters cut. Y'know, a wadcutter with 170 ft.lbs. of energy is getting into the realm of actual self-defense.
Let's say a woman already has one of these revolvers or she DOES NOT want "one of those big guns", then with decent ($$ expensive BB product $$) ammo, she could be sufficiently armed. Low recoil also means that she can fire and fire and fire ... . The small frame .32 holds six (6) rounds not five (5) as do most small revolvers. I'm not going to get into the subject of the .32 H&R mag or the .327 magnum -- that's a whole other topic. My pap (born 1894) once had a 32-20 revolver. With that (? or maybe with the one I inherited (?)), he shot a knife-wielding (big mistake) robber in the guy's family jewels. End of robbery.
These little revolvers fit great into my wife's hands. In a "pray this never happens" situation, my wife could use these for self-defense. Long ago (we're pushing a half century of being together) I got her a snubbie .38 and I just don't think she is comfortable with it. She'll not shoot my automatics and I don't want her to do so. Teaching women to shoot automatics is an "adventure" -- can be anyway, seen / heard of horror stories / bandaged hands.
I'm new to this site. I hope my info helps. I love the look of these old revolvers. Pap routinely put rabbits on the supper table with his .32 revolver. These .32s with good ammo can be very accurate (my Pap's is ... just don't want to harm it with use). My grandma always kept her late husband's .32 revolver nearby.
Are you shooting jacketed rounds?
They were designed for lubricated lead round-nose. The bore is a hair too tight for jacketed, but thats about the only .22WRF you will find these days.
Old Hobo, welcome in and appreciate the BB info. I've been using Flocci Wadcutters. My EDC and house guns are all in the .32 family and this will be a fine upgrade. Thanks.
Considering this round to be small in diameter, one can at least drive these wadcutters deep and hope they cut major blood vessels. Man, those wadcutters would just have to hurt like the blazes! Lots of nerve damage. It deeply infuriates me when I think about a man attacking a woman. My pap (Dad's dad, we were bestest buddies) taught me how to tie a hangman's noose when I was 5 years old. He used to go to the hangings. "Community events." "Dark entertainment." Time for all the "fire and brimstone" preachers to preach in public.
Regular loadings on the .32 wadcutter will get you 15" of penetration on soft tissue at 640 ft./sec. Now with the Buffalo Bore out of a revolver with a 3" or better barrel will get you well over 800 ft./sec.. I think the BuffBore would break a rib and cut into the boiler works. Don't get me wrong, I'd not go hunting wild bore with it; but I tell you what, it's terrifying to think about getting hit with one of those wadcutters at a nasty velocity. An aggressive felon might just "bleed like a stuck hog." Too, one isn't gonna fire one round and stop when their life is in danger. I tell women, "Keep firing!"
Comparing the .32 long to the .22 loadings, it beets the .22 LR and .22 Mag. in depth of penetration. I'm a fan of the .22 mag., but the bullet just isn't heavy enough to drive deep. The .32 Long wadcutter bullets are twice as heavy and cause "cookie-cutter" wounds = much blood loss. The .22 Mag is a great short-range groundhog round.
I found the following table. The generated table was obtained using only a 2" barrel. Fiocchi came in last; but again, we're talking 2" barrel.
Listen man, if you buy some of that too dang expensive Buffalo Bore ammo (I did), let me know how it does at the range.
One range around here is well up in the mountains (Southern Appalachia) and they close that place come October ... which is to say too soon.
I'm old and this weekend, I just crashed. Have bad arthritis and inflammatory disease. Didn't get to the range.
Short story, you might get to the range before I do.
Whenever I do get to the range, I'm gonna see where my shot placement is. Then I'm gonna bust some 2-liter frozen soft-drink bottles. Next, bust some 2"x4" blocks, regular pine then pressure-treated (outdoor boards). Gonna compare regular wadcutters to Buffalo Bore wadcutters.
People disparage small calibers. Me, I say that it is the man, not the weapon. Is he a good shot? Will he stand his ground? That's what counts.
My mom's dad was a subsistence hunter up in the farthermost Western part of North Carolina. The Ulster Scot trappers married-in with the Cherokee from whom they leased land. As a young man all he had for gathering meat was a .32 cap'n'ball rifle. Buckshot, 00, is around .32 cal and you can use ticking to patch those round balls for the .32 muzzle-loaders. That man taught me to hunt and fish. When he was hunting, he turned into some sort of forest creature / mountain creature. I wasn't his grandson any more. Kind'a scary, but I sue did learn a lot. Old fat man he was (and over 70, lived to 90), yet he'd head up the side of a mountain like some bear -- and silently so. Strange. Scary. Those people got good with whatever weapon they had or they'd starve.
Magtech: tested two, 11" and 12.5". Flocci: tested three, 13.5", 12.5", 13.25". In all cases you can see the track inside the gel goes an inch or so further and settles back to the numbers posted. One Magtech and one Flocci flattened out a bit and were .38 and .37 in diameter respectively. Not too shabby IMO. Once I get the BB I'll post the figures, prob in a few weeks.
Old Hobo hope you recover and can get some range time before long/before the range closes down.
Your results are not shabby at all. Good stuff.
If the lead is a bit soft, one could use gas checks to prevent barrel leading. I've read that hard cast bullets get better velocity. True? Old wives tale? I'm not a reloader. I used to reload .308 ... decades ago.
"Recovery" is slow at this age, plus I'll never totally recover. Medications prop-up what's left of me. I'm still doing work (but on long term disability); but before Christmas, I'll be totally retired. My wife and I have had a very fruitful, yet horribly hard life. You play the cards you're handed. So it goes.
I really like these old revolvers. If still in working condition, why not keep using them. At least one can have fun at the range with them. I was raised to NEVER waste. I have gun safes and keep my toys and important paperwork locked-up. Though I currently don't own one, I like the old break-top / owl's head revolvers. The men in my family all carried revolvers. I guess that's why I have an attraction to owning them. They've prevented robberies (my Pap could of gotten knifed had he not had his) and my Pap shot rabbits for the stew pot using them. They work -- is what it is.
Oh, just remembered. You can get speed loaders for S&W J-frames in .32 cal 6-shot. My .32 speed-loader is only tiny bit too big for the hand-ejector (I-frame), yet it works. I do not know about the Colt revolvers.
Yes, that's the only ammo I have. I have some CCI, some Winchester, and I think some Remington loads. Yes, I think the pistol is capable of better accuracy.
I saw a Colt PP for sale a few months ago, and for some reason, I thought that's 'cute' and cheap, so it followed me home.
It is a circa 1907 Franken gun, refinished, non-matching barrel, lockwork sketchy...and it's in .32 Colt long...an obsolete round, near impossible to buy.
Long story, shortened...I gathered equipment and experience to fix and to load for her. A 100gr. SWC bullet (loaded backwards) behind 2 gr. of Bullseye and it's fun to shoot...So, I just bought another in good shape, now that I learned what not to do.
Just FYI, Colt even warns against using jacketed bullets in those guns because of the possibility of a seperated jacket getting left in the bore.
If you are handy with a drlll press, you can drill out a fired .22 WMR case and turn it into an adapter sleeve for .22 LR. Another possibility I explored with mine was having a machine shop drill out the cylinders and permanently sleeve them for Long rifle rounds.
I ended up selling my WMR Target Positive and buying an Officer's Model .22, but I kinda miss the silly little Positive and wish I had converted it.
Didn't know that about the jacketed bullets. The CCI's do look like a jacketed bullet, looking at the Winchester ammo I'd say it's some kind of copper wash. Didn't come across the Remingtons. In the bottom of the .22rimfire drawer, and I ain't going that deep today. !!
I did try to make sleeves out of .22mag and .22WRF cases, but I couldn't get it to work. Don't remember what the problem was. Might tackle it again sometime. Can't sell it, the wife remembers her dad shooting coons with it back in the day, so it will have to be passed on. Don't know what it would cost to convert it to .22LR, but with two other good and accurate .22LR pistols, I think I'll spend those buck$ on something else.
I am going to shoot out your way a bunch of links. Went to work today, even though I will soon retire. During lunchtime, I looked-up a bunch of stuff about the .32 long.
I too am interested in this.
I'm gonna spew several links your way. Sounds like you are reloading the .32 long. Good for you! Wish there were more of you. Blessings.
What I'm gonna send you is magnificently disorganized. Do forgive. I was thinking about mondo-cheap reloading for you. Some buckshot balls are near the .312 diameter and so, why just not load a buckshot ball into a .32 Long case and plink with such?! Should one use a patch? Beats me!
You may know, so look at these links and make up your own mind. Attempting to think for others is just downright insulting. Sooooooo, here's some just outright stream-of-conscience links. Hope they help. Y'know, you can purchase all manner of diameter buckshot balls by the jug. Patch them or use wax patches (cookie-cutter a .32 case into a pan of wax; use wax to cover the reload even as if you were loading a cap'n'ball revolver; primers would be the highest cost). Would you have to crimp? Shoot, I don't know. You know more than I.
So, beware!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Here comes a bunch of ... whatever links. Please do have fun!!!!!!!!!!! Do please forgive me for not correcting all of the following chaos.
Chaos, do be aware! I cut'n'pasted all manner of things found on the web. Just did -- sorry. Think "stream of consciousness" ... Here we go!:
"Since he has reloading press, he could use round ball for plinking.
"I just put calipers to the "0" buck from Hornady buckshot I shoot in my current .32 caplock. It measured .321. I looked now in their 2006 catalog and they list their lead/antimony hardened "0" buckshot, part # 6410 at.320" diameter. They state roundness of +0.001. My barrel takes a 10 thousandths patch for target work with a steel loading rod for these buckshot, and I use a 5 thousandths patch for hunting with the wooden rod and short starter. Boxed 32 caliber roundballs differ by manufacturer with varying diameters. I have seen .310, .315, and .319 depending on maker currently in the marketplace. One probably wants to consider standardizing for accuracy. Years ago when country stores would sell you a 12 gauge single ought buck shell for 35 cents I could buy those shells which were the cheapest common lead buckshot and take out the buckshot to use them (12 or 16 pellets). There was a time when such shells were cheaper to cut open for ball than to buy the 100 designated m/l balls after m/l caught on. Over at least 35 years I only bought one or two boxes of 100 preferring the buckshot in my rifles for cost and convenience. Never molded a 32 ball in all that time. Still do not. I shoot the Hornady now as getting the pure lead buckshot by the bag or in cheap shells is nearly impossible for me. Do what you want to do but I would tell you that great thick patch combinations in the 32 do not lead to the best accuracy simply because thick patches compress on firing and the ball takes too much windage. Thick patches are just too soft to keep the ball in the middle under pressure of the spin imparted by the rifling. The 32 is a higher pressure gun than a .62 rifled jaeger with deep grooves. Big calibers is where a thick patch belongs. Remember all that advice apout the patch weave impressing around the ball diameter in a good tight fit as being best for accuracy. It is so."
"The size that I use is the Hornady #1 Buck shot that says it is .300 diameter on the box and it mics out at .300 too.
"I can use 1 patch and do when the boy shoots it as it loads very easy for him but it shoots better with 2 - .010 patches or 1 pillow tick patch that is .018 thick.
"I hope that helps you in finding what you need for your .32
#1.5 buck .310 diameter = 1280 balls per jar and is in-stock
Maybe 2 lead ball per load.
Maybe load with Pyrodex = never have to worry about over-pressure.
Pyrodex P Powder For Sale Overview
"Hodgdon Pyrodex(Pyrodex P Powder For Sale) P is intended to be a direct replacement for FFFg Black powder when measured volumetrically using a black powder measure. The principal uses for Pyrodex P are in muzzleloading pistols, cap and ball revolvers, and in small bore, muzzleloading rifles. Like all grades of Pyrodex, it burns cleaner and produces less fouling than blackpowder.
"Dick Burg(rburg) suggested 1 grain of Bullseye to me under a piece of #0 buck. In lieu of #0 buck, which is tough to find these days, I've used .315 round balls for muzzleloaders, which are effectively the same thing.
"I've also used 1gr VV N310-this left me with a lot of unburned powder on the gun. Bullseye seemed to work a lot better."
Could use wax as a patch / could put wax over ball
Pyrodex P sub for FFFg
Use loads that a .36 navy revolver would use – no worries about pressure
Dad left me his Police Positive in .38 Special along with a newer Police Positive Special in .38 Special.
He bought it in the 50's on his return from the Marines from a retiring butcher who kept it, wrapped in an oily rag in the delivery truck glove box.
There was some identifying marking on the but that has faded.
The serial number is under 28,000 which lists to 1909 when I looked on-line.
It has a 1.5" cylinder in .38 Special so I'm guessing a special order could get the .38 Special in the Police Positive.
Casting your own is an option as well. Just don't try to find a 'heeled' bullet...don't ask, you likely don't need one anyway.
Just be careful, man.
Some of these revolvers were chambered for the .38 New Police instead of the .38 Special cartridge.
Why did Colt do this?! I sure don't know. I'll not even speculate. If you have put a long cylinder in a revolver, why even dare chamber it in a less powerful cartridge?! Seems stupid, silly, ....
Due to this, one should make sure yours is one of the vast majority of .38 Special chamberings.
Also, when buying ammo, make sure it is a standard pressure loading -- not anything +P. You already know this, but I had to say it. I'm OCD.
Here's an article about such a revolver chambered in .38 New Police:
"The Colt Police Positive Special was produced from late 1907 to 1995. It came as an iteration of the Colt Police Positive. The only design differences are that the Special had a strengthened frame and lengthened cylinder to make space for the more potent .38 Special cartridge. My personal Colt is that of the third issue of Police Positive Specials and is chambered in .38 S&W rather than .38 Special. The third issue was made from 1947 to 1976 and sported a grooved trigger, a new cylinder retention system, and a ramped front sight. According to Colt’s serial number lookup, my Colt was manufactured in 1970."
[emphasis, Old Hobo]
Oops, I should have also included the following from the above article:
"I had mentioned earlier that my Colt is chambered in .38 S&W (Colt New Police). I suspect the reason is that my particular revolver was imported from China and was once a Royal Hong Kong Police revolver and .38 S&W was either preferred or more common than the relatively new .38 Special."
Barrel clearly says Police Positive .38 Special the 2 words share the same P and that's what we've been shooting thru it.
The newer [larger frame] says Police Positive Special .38 Special.......
Excellent! Great to hear.
I also took a .38 snub-nose out to fire. Ammo was 141 full wadcutter; 3.0 grains of Bullseye. That thing just would not place. I would have been better-served just throwing rocks. Never experienced such terrible performance. I zero trust in that ammo. "Belly gun" only with that ammo. Got the ammo at a gun show for plinking. Well shoot!, I can't even plink with it. Gotta put some factory ammo in it that shoots better.
On the other hand, the .32 shot just fine, different ammo types all stayed in the black (4").
Winchester .32 S&W Long 98 gr. round nose; group = 2" or a shy less; one round only made the 8 ring (50 yrd small bore rifle target; 7 ring is 4 inches in diameter) all the others were inside the 9 ring with one cutting the x-ring.
PMC .32 long 100 gr. wadcutters did worse than the round nose loads, with a 2 3/4" group. This load and the above round-nosers recoiled the same. Noticeable but not bad, bad. A woman could shoot it, but shooting 30 rounds might make her hand hurt. This is a small I-frame after all. Mine has the original grip, i.e. very small. This might suit women with average-sized hands. Were I serious about it as an ongoing shooter, I'd put a larger grip on it. Not why I bought it, though.
The round nose .32 longs went right through the 2x4, but with little splintering. The soft lead wadcutters were trapped in the wood, yet still caused splintering out the back -- the plank got slammed pretty hard. Both of these loads would break ribs. The round nose would keep on going, but being a round nose, would likely not do serious damage to internal organs.
Next up the Buffalo Bore .32 long loaded with 100gr. hard cast bullets. Let's talk 2x4 first. These blasted through the plank and caused very nasty splintering. And yes, the entry hole and its passage through the middle of the board was cookie-cutter round. The B.Bore .32 full wadcutter bullets caused as much damage as the .38 Special wadcutters = went right through the 2x4" with nasty splintering out the back. I would be terrified of being shot with one of these rounds. Ribs would be broken and nasty damage to internal organs would likely occur.
These B.Bore went right through a 2-liter bottle solid ice. However, the bottle didn't explode. Decent 9mm rounds with hollow points will cause these ice 2 liter bottles to explode. And these 9's do not have to be +P to do so.
Accuracy: these B.Bore wadcutters shot a 2 1/4" group at 10 paces.
Recoil: The B.Bore .32s kicked like a .38. In one or two videos I've watched, it was said that the recoil of these loads were noticeable but not much. I call B.S. on that! In that little revolver, after shooting the 6th round, my hand stung. Me, what do I care?! HOWEVER, I'm not going to let my wife shoot these. For people who are recoil sensitive, these Buffalo Bore .32 Long cartridges would be painful. Even though they are loaded at standard pressure, still they pack a whallup.
Side note: I also brought some .32 S&W shorts with me (88gr round nose bullets; Remington). They were a pleasure to shoot and I shot a 2" group at 10 paces with them. Fun fun!
For further fun I started plinking with the round nose .32 longs and did so out to 75 yards. I did NOT have to use a lot of "Kentucky windage" -- it shot very surprisingly flat out past 50 yards. I was able to walk it in on one 4" rock and one tree limb lying on the hill's dirt (a large hill lies beyond 50 yards at this range up in the mountains). Talk about a little "fun gun"! I was turned into a little boy. "It ain't no sin to grin!"
Bingo on the Police Positive Target .22WRF . Notice the CCI ammo had printed "not for pistols" on the boxes and I could never figure why , having used it as lower powered ammo for my .22 Mag revolvers . However I had a rather Large Stash of the older two runs of Winchester WRF to use up and that , being plated lead flat points, is what gave me remarkable accuracy in the old Colt WRF ! I also had a 1890 Winchester pump with tang Marbles peep that I got from the same source , a large famous ranch in Monterey County Calif in the mid1970s . Those two guns were from the estate of an old monied family Cowgirl and there was story behind them. I used them sparingly in the almost 50 years I had them and I shot up a brick of the three bricks of Winchesters runs in the early 80s and early 90s between them and found them to both be astonishingly accurate and killed smaller medium game animals very well. The Colt 6" pistol chronographed 1150+- FPS and the 24" rifle a high 1300s FPS with those flat nosed 45 grain bullets and killed very well ! I got over $2200 for both guns and 800 rounds of the Winchester ammo from a very appreciative collector this last spring on GB. I still use the CCI 45 grain jacketed ammo in my .22 mag pumps, bolts and revolvers .
Here are my Colt Small and medium vintage revolvers from 10 years back. The little Pocket Positive was kinda rare with ".32 S&W cartridge" emblazoned on the side of the barrel ! Heard they only did that a few months , got a premium for that .
My two remaining New Services : Top is a sweet accurized S&W sighted .45acp 1917, Bottom a .45 Colt British/Canadian 1909 model .
@Old Hobo ”This is a small I-frame after all. Mine has the original grip, i.e. very small. This might suit women with average-sized hands. Were I serious about it as an ongoing shooter, I'd put a larger grip on it. Not why I bought it, though.”
The I frame grip is pretty close to a J frame most of the difference is the longer length of the J frame. A quick and easy solution of a pair of wrap around J frame stocks (coverage in all sides). I picked these up on Ebay for less than $20. Some relief at the hammer spring screw and some cutting/radius below the cylinder release and now the gun fits my rather large hands. The originals are numbered to the gun and pristine so they got put aside for safe keeping besides the fact that there is no way I could shoot effectively with just them. J frame round but grip adapters will fit as well. Before and after pics:
Separate names with a comma.