What can anyone tell me about this .38 Special ammo?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by citizenconn, Jul 20, 2022.

  1. citizenconn

    citizenconn Member

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    Someone sent me a box of this .38 Special ammo along with a couple other boxes of looks like retro Western ammo. I have never owned a revolver and will borrow a Taurus 605 from a family member this weekend when I go up to visit my Dad to do a little shooting. Just wanting to make sure there won't be a problem shooting this ammo in that revolver. I'm guessing this is some retro boxed ammo and isn't worth more than any other regular box of ammo. Thanks in advance.
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  2. RKRCPA

    RKRCPA Member

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    That looks like honest to goodness, genuine retro ammo. It would be interesting to know how old it actually is.

    But to answer your question, no, you will not have any problems shooting that ammo.
     
  3. bihj

    bihj Member

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    The collectors are drooling.
    Put that box away and find something else to blast with.
     
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  4. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    Classic target wadcutters
     
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  5. lee n. field

    lee n. field Member

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    .38 wadcutter. Target load.

    A lot of folks out there in Internet gun social media think it's just dandy for a defensive load in a .38 snub.
     
  6. wcwhitey

    wcwhitey Member

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    That is an old box. Won’t be a problem shooting it but there is a market out there for a box of ammo that old in that shape. Good old fashioned target Wadcutters.
     
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  7. Old_Grouch

    Old_Grouch Member

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    This reminds me of an episode of Northern Exposure from years ago. A woolly mammoth was found preserved in the ice. While everyone was discussing and planning how to recover and preserve it one of the old timers from the area dug it out of the ice, butchered it and ate part of it.
     
  8. ontarget

    ontarget Member

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    I probably wouldn't shoot it, but only because it might be collectable. I'm sure if it doesn't show any signs of corrosion or being stored improperly it will be safe to shoot.
     
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  9. Hooda Thunkit

    Hooda Thunkit Member

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    I haven't thought about that show in years. It really was funny.

    For the OP - I personally wouldn't shoot that ammo. Not because it's not safe, it is safe.

    The ammo is worth more to a collector. Sell that box and buy 2 with the proceeds.
     
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  10. Pat Riot
    • Contributing Member

    Pat Riot Contributing Member

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    +5 on not shooting it due to collector value.
     
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  11. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    Yes, the box and ammunition probably has some collector value to some.

    You might see if you can peddle it at at a then next local gunshow.

    But the effort sell may be not worth the the effort.

    I might try selling it once and if not successful just shoot it.
     
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  12. jstert

    jstert Member

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    be forewarned...38sp wadcutter ammo and a j-frame snubbie revolver is a potent ccw addiction.
     
  13. StrawHat

    StrawHat Member

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    Well, the box is old. The ammunition? Not so sure. In focus pictures of the ammunition including the primer, will help determine if it is original to the box or reloaded.


    Kevin
     
  14. citizenconn

    citizenconn Member

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    I'll try to add some pictures of that soon. Thanks.
     
  15. wcwhitey

    wcwhitey Member

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    You can tell by the brass that it is was meant to be Wadcutter Target ammo. The rolled ogive in the brass is common to target ammo at the base of the flush seated bullet. Not to say it could not be reloaded but it does look factory.
     
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  16. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    Those are specifically for the .38 Colt 1911 Mid-range pistol for bullseye shooting. Should be a hollow base wadcutter. Seating them flush is the only way the 38 special can fit in a 1911. They are too obscure today for them to be made as a collectors edition.

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. citizenconn

    citizenconn Member

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    So should I not shoot them out of a Taurus CC pistol? From the comments here I'm not planning on shooting them now anyway, but since I know very little about revolvers I can use a little schoolin. It would make sense that they are for a 1911, as the other box of retro Western ammo I was sent was .45 ACP match ammo. It was a thank you for a 1911 pistol I'd bought from him.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2022
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  18. Old_Grouch

    Old_Grouch Member

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    Assuming they are factory loads they are safe to shoot in any .38 Spl revolver. They are a very mild load.
     
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  19. ThomasT

    ThomasT Member

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    Shoot them if you want. Thats what they were made for. But be smart and save the brass and the box. People collect ammo boxes. And some revolver ammo is hard to find in stock right now. You will enjoy shooting those rounds.
     
  20. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    Shoot em out of anything you want. They are usually light loads between 700 and 800 fps. The ones i have that my grandpa loaded 20 years ago have 3.0 grains of bullseye behind a 148gr HBWC.

    If the brass is indeed original to the box, keep it and put it in the box. Then display or sell it. That box appears to be in beautiful shape.
     
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  21. reddog81

    reddog81 Member

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    They'd work fine in any .38 Special, but I'd want to shoot then in a Colt Gold Cup National Match .38 Special Mid Range Semi-Auto 1911 or just save them for a display.
     
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  22. wcwhitey

    wcwhitey Member

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    S&W Model 52 that would be my choice
     
  23. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    They were also meant for the S&W Model 39.

    Any factory .38 Special ammo is safe in any .38 Special revolver in proper working condition. That ammo was used in a semi-auto but not exclusively. It was very popular with revolver bullseye shooting to like in the S&W Model 14. (Smith & Wesson Model K-38 Target Masterpiece) No fears... I reload and load that type of ammo all the time for my .38 Special revolvers. The Wadcutter bullet is named so because it punches a nice round hole in the target that looks like a hole puncher did it making scoring easy.
     
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  24. murf

    murf Member

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  25. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    They work very well in my 14-4. I only very recently found out my 1960 Colt 1911 Super 38 Automatic in 38 super was rechambered to 38 special HBWC. So i havent tried them in it yet. The magazine i posted a pic of is an original Colt 38 special mid-range magazine.
     
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