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8-Shot 12-25-2010 01:10 AM

Best .357 mag Duty Round
 
I am newer to the forum and wanted to get some opinions on .357mag duty ammo. I am a police officer and I recently started carrying a 4 inch Smith & Wesson 627 Pro Series as my duty gun. All of our ammo is provided by the department. For our duty rounds I have a choice between the 125gr Remington Golden Saber Hollow Points and the 158gr Winchester Lead Nose Jacketed Hollow Points. I have read all the stuff about the 125gr being the best round, but there seems to be about as many that prefer the 158gr. Any of you that use to or still do carry a revolver what do you prefer. Keep in mind those are my only 2 choices due to dept. policies.

David LaPell 12-25-2010 01:20 AM

I have always been a big believer in bigger weight bullets. I don't even carry 125 grain bullets in my .357's, period. They have a great rep, but my preference is always for 158 and up.

ArchAngelCD 12-25-2010 02:21 AM

I agree with David, I also like a heavier bullet BUT, all the data tells me the 125gr .357 Magnum round is a proven man stopper. If you are going to carry this for duty ammo I would go with the proven product. Remington Golden saber ammo is a good accurate ammo and like I said, the 125gr bullet is a proven man stopper.

Be safe out there...

Knightrider03m 12-25-2010 03:24 AM

I would go with the 158 if the Golden Sabers are your only other pick.

Wayne M 12-25-2010 04:13 AM

When the 357 was a lot more common in Police holsters than now the 125gr JHP got to be known as the "magic bullet." Back then it was generally a Remington but anybodies full magnum round will do.

ikor 12-25-2010 04:28 AM

In your line of work you need a round that can penetrate such commonly encountered materials as windshield (laminated) glass, sheet metal, plywood and heavy clothing and still deliver deep enough penetration on a human target to reach vitals. The same holds true if faced with quartering shots on bad guys in dynamic situations (all shots are not taken at bad guys facing full frontal). For those purposes the 125gr Magnum is not nearly as good as the 158gr load of the two you listed.

badguybuster 12-25-2010 08:45 AM

Preferably I would stick with the 125 for the simple fact that it IS proven to be effective. In a 4" barrel I am not sure the 158 is going to get the necessary velocity to be effective. Just me opinion

handgunner356 12-25-2010 08:52 AM

I believe either would serve you well. But keep in mind the Remington Golden Saber isn't a full house 125gr magnum. The Golden Saber is a medium velocity magnum, 1250fps vs 1450fps. It makes a great short barrel round and is much better than any +P .38 round. But it's not the firebreathing hotrod 125gr with the bad flame cutting rep.

AnthonyF 12-25-2010 09:11 AM

8-Shot,

Do yourself a huge favor and google search gary roberts 357 magnum.

Dr. Gary Roberts is one of the nation's foremost authorities on ballistics and terminal performance.

brucev 12-25-2010 09:47 AM

Don't obsess about the round in your gun. Do not focus on worst case possible scenarios that have more in common with a fantasy Zombie invasion than real life. Focus on making sure that, if the time ever comes, you can get your revolver out of the holster and into action quickly and effectively. Focus on being able to accomplish a reload under less than ideal conditions. As far as the round is concerned, the "pedal point" Remington 125 gr. JHP was one of many such loadings that established the .357 S&W Magnum as a premier load. I've seen what results when it is used. The 158 gr. JHP is also a fine load. It will not give such impressive results on people. It will probably do a better job with barriers. No handgun is a 100% guaranteed one-shot stopper. None of them will stop speeding cars with a single bullet. Hopefully you will never need to use your weapon on anything other than a paper target when training or qualifying. However, I would suggest that the 125 gr. JHP is about the best possible choice given the two loads you mentioned. JMHO. Merry Christmas!!!

ArchAngelCD 12-26-2010 03:07 PM

Just remember people, he can only choose from the 2 approved loads offered by his department.

That said there is good advice in telling you to be sure you can hit what you are aiming at and reload quickly if need be. Any factory .357 Magnum ammo will stop the bad guy if you do your job and concentrate on shot placement under pressure.

XTrooper 12-26-2010 04:15 PM

The real question is, what kind of "genius" would allow you to carry a revolver, 8-shot or otherwise, while on-duty in this day and age? Allowing revolvers and then limiting the ammunition choices to only two loads makes the decision even more bizarre.

I retired from the New Jersey State Police in April 1991 and carried a revolver for over half my career. I LOVE revolvers and still own more wheelguns than autoloaders by a margin of 2 to 1.

That said, I would no more want to again be a Jersey Trooper armed with a revolver in today's world than I would want to be armed with a bolt-action Springfield '03 rifle in a modern combat environment. There are just too many real world incidents that occur every day, like multiple assailants, that will put you and your revolver at a distinct disadvantage. Ask yourself how many state police agencies and how many major city police departments carry revolvers in 2010 and then ask yourself why? In the case of the NJSP, in 1982 we demanded autoloaders after two back-to-back shootings, one in which Trooper Phil Lamonaco #2663 was fatally shot, where lone troopers faced multiple assailants armed with autoloaders.




P.S.- Just some advice from an old, retired cop to the OP......
You, as a police officer with the legal obligation to "protect and serve" even when that means putting yourself in grave peril, MUST consider those "worst case scenarios" and prepare yourself for them the best you can if you hope to live out your career. If you're a religious man, a short prayer can go a long way too.

Best wishes to you.

m1gunner 12-26-2010 04:37 PM

Get a box of each loading. Go to the range and see which one you feel more comfortable with WRT the way you shoot your revolver.

Badkarma 1 12-26-2010 09:44 PM

Of the 2 you mentioned, I'd go with the one you can control in recoil and gives you the best repeat shot capability!
The Golden Saber is a lite load (something like 1,250fps) where as the 158gr round does about 1,350 or better, just to give you some numbers to kick around.
Now I've read that the 158gr round does have some problems with overpenetration of perps, but if barrier penetration is needs it's supposedly a good round.
Try both and go with the one that shoots best for YOU! And buy yourself a backup gun too!

8-Shot 12-27-2010 01:25 AM

I went to the range and tried 25 rounds of both. The 158gr seemed to group better for me from point shoulder shooting and from supported positions. I'm going to go with the 158gr. Thanks for all your opinions. I know some feel it's a foolish idea to carry a revolver in this day and age, but I shoot it so much better than our glocks. We also had a bad problem with our model 22 and a failure to feed. I also feel that with all the 1911 and Sig p220's around with 8-10 rounds magazines that I'm not that out gunned. I can reload with my moon clips as fast as most with a semi-auto. I also like the stopping power and reputation of the 357 along with the reliability of a revolver. Once again thank you all for your thoughts and opinions on this. I feel that your opinions are better than most published "experts".

ArchAngelCD 12-27-2010 03:12 AM

Just be safe out there 8-Shot and "protect and serve" the best way you know how...

Actually, if you can reload 8 rounds of .357 Magnum using moon clips as fast as 7 or 8 rounds of .45 Auto in a magazine I don't see a problem with your choice. Carrying a 5 or 6 round revolver might not be a wise choice but an 8 round revolver sounds like an alright choice to me. (as long as you can reload it quickly under pressure) BUT, if you do run out of ammo there won't be anyone who can pass you a reload like if you were using a department common handgun like the Sig 220 or 1911.

Knightrider03m 12-27-2010 03:45 AM

IMO, as much as I love the Golden Saber rounds in both the 9mm and .45ACP, when it is in the .357, the round is isn't as "hot" as the 158 winchester round.

BUFF 12-27-2010 10:57 AM

From 1981 until 1991, I carried a .357 Magnum revolver with the load of my choice to work every day. I had several gun built on several frame sizes with several lengths of barrels. I quickly found that a Model 66 with a 6 inch barrel worked best for me.

For ammo, my research found that the best man-stopper was the Federal 125 grain .357 Magnum hollow point, so that's what I always carried, except for a brief dalliance with the Winchester 145 grain Silvertip Magnum. The Silvertip had a lot less muzzle flash and blast than did the 125 grainer. A lot, LOT less flash, toned down even a bit more by my 6 inch barrels compared to everybody's 2-1/2, 3 and 4 inch barrels.

I patrolled an area on the east side of the Salt Lake valley, Wasatch Boulevard, from which rose Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons. Located up these canyons were the world class ski resorts of Snowbird, Alta, Solitude and Brighton. The traffic was incredible in the winter, with skiers cars and vans, UTA busses, box and semi trucks delivering food, drinks and materials hotels use. The vehicles continually were colliding with the large population of Rocky Mountain Mule deer, reeking havoc upon for sheetmetal, glass, skin, meat and fur. The carnage would at times be boosted by having a large Shiras moose stop a car or truck unexpectedly, or some of the magnificent elk that call these canyons and foothills home get knocked off their legs and slammed across the sedan's hood, and then tear the windshield and roof of the car clear off, sometimes removing the car''s occupants heads, sometimes just crushing them.

As one would expect, we were called upon to put these injured beasts out of their misery. I found that the 125 grain .357 did a great job on all deer and most elk and moose if you could apply the proper angle to the proper anatomy. The poor beasts died quickly when the bullets went where needed.

I shot a lot of injured deer, a big lot of BIG injured deer. Shots were rarely further than 25 yards.

This 125 grain Magnum performance on deer have me confidence that the round would work well on people that had gotten to a point where we needed to shoot them. Few police agencies around the U.S. that tried the 125 grain .357 Mag j.h.p. found it's ability to stop animal animation anything but stellar, be the targets have two legs or four.

Other deputies had good luck with 158 grainers, when the hollowpoints actually opened. Since people are more likely to attack cops than are large quadrapeds, i went with the 125's. God's grace showered down upon me and for those 10 years, I never had to shoot a human antagonist.

A gun that shot 8 instead of just 6 .357 Magnum rounds would have been a happy thing to have back then.

I had located a source of steel core 9mm bullets, FMJ design, that weighed close to 125 grains, just a smidge over. I experimented and found they could be loaded into .357 Mag cases to amazing velocities and this resulted in tremendous barrier penetration. I kept a sppedloader of six of them on my belt, figuring that if 12 or 18 rounds hadn't settled the hash, the targets had hunkered behind stuff, and maybe a better penetrator would help. Other than ventilating one moose's skull once, these metal piercers were untested on animals. I was glad I had them. I DID NOT DISCUSS THEM with my supervisors.

Lots of good bullets today, the best we have ever had. I would be comfortable with either full power 125 or 158 grain j.h.p.'s loaded to the maximum safe standards.

cjw3 12-27-2010 12:49 PM

I'm a retired wildlife officer and carried a 686 in the early '90's until the Dept. went to Glock 22's. I always felt well protected with the revolver, and actually shot it a little better than the Glock but I was an old revolver shooter from way back anyway. I'm not knocking the Glock (I bought both the 22's I was issued when reissue/retirement came along and also had my own G27 for a backup), I just felt that we mainly went to them because "everybody else" was doing so.

We could carry whatever factory ammunition we liked, so I carried the Federal 125 grain JHP; at the time it was about the best performer in actual shootings. I think you made a good choice with the 158 grain load in this case; I wonder if the 125 GS wasn't sort of an accommodation to some folks that might be a little recoil shy?

Be safe.

Andy Griffith 12-27-2010 02:45 PM

The GSP used to carry the 145gr. Silvertips in .357- more of an "in between" the light and heavy loads.

RoninPhx 12-27-2010 04:02 PM

another comment
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by 8-Shot (Post 135750161)
I went to the range and tried 25 rounds of both. The 158gr seemed to group better for me from point shoulder shooting and from supported positions. I'm going to go with the 158gr. Thanks for all your opinions. I know some feel it's a foolish idea to carry a revolver in this day and age, but I shoot it so much better than our glocks. We also had a bad problem with our model 22 and a failure to feed. I also feel that with all the 1911 and Sig p220's around with 8-10 rounds magazines that I'm not that out gunned. I can reload with my moon clips as fast as most with a semi-auto. I also like the stopping power and reputation of the 357 along with the reliability of a revolver. Once again thank you all for your thoughts and opinions on this. I feel that your opinions are better than most published "experts".

I was going to add i would probably use the 158grain, which you have already chosen. A lot of this for penetration reasons on car bodies, glass, barricade, etc.
Now my time was packing a model 19 in the 70's on a sheriff's department.
We routinely trained with what at the time, politically incorrect, was called a mexican quail shoot. you stood in a circle, and at the whistle turned and fired.
You had six six inch diameter targets, numbered one to six in varied order and distance. You had to start with one and go to six. Had to keep firing if you missed one at the same target. You had to do this with a tactical reload in less than 15 seconds. My average time was somewhere around 8 to 9 seconds hitting all six targets twice.
I have a friend that from a holstered postion can hit six targets at about seven yards in about 1.30 seconds. He also took rob leatham one time in competition too.
You might not believe it until you see it done.
I like high cap mags, but don't anyone ever tell you are undergunned with a revolver if you are proficient enough.
the 125 grain jcp was a late bloomer to magnum pistols, and they the pistols that is were designed around that 158grain bullet.
While in recent years my toys have been more in the .41magnum and up range, to this day i don't think there is anything around that i would be uncomfortable facing with a model 19 with only six rounds. And a couple of speed loaders.
I might add at the time in the 70's, the instructors i had preached proficiency, skill, with a handgun rather than spray and pray. A lot of it has to do with mindset by the way

Checkman 12-30-2010 10:12 AM

I have a couple .357 revolvers. A 4" Model 28 Highway Patrolman and a 2" Colt Lawman Mk III. I like the 125 grain Golden Saber load for the snubbie. I carry the Remington 158 grain HP in my Model 28.

moxie 12-30-2010 12:34 PM

8-Shot,

Very wise choice. You picked the round YOU shot best out of YOUR gun. That factor trumps other considerations by a wide margin.

Mule88 12-31-2010 05:21 PM

I also prefer the 158 gns, especially the Gold Dots.

nebmike 01-03-2011 11:29 PM

I just recently bought the exact same gun, and I think it is a perfectly viable option as a duty gun (and I'm a huge Glock and 1911 fan).

Regarding the ammo choices -- out of all the great options out there, those two particular loads would have been towards the bottom of my list of hollow points. I guess either one would probably do its job if you do yours, but these days there are quite a few far better choices out there (IMHO). Given that particular choice, I would have gone with the Win 158gr also. If it were me though, I'd be rattling somebody's cage in favor of allowing some other option.

If the gun was for personal self-defense use (where I'd be unlikely to have to shoot through intermediate barriers), I would go with 125gr JHP's all day long (the standard 'old fashioned' JHP's by Federal or Winchester). However, if I were using this as a duty gun where my chances of having to shoot through barriers is quite a bit higher, the only 125gr load I would choose would one (Federal, Cor-Bon, Double Tap) with a Barnes DPX bullet... but I would probably go with something heavier like a 140gr Barnes or a 158gr Gold Dot.

FWIW

147_Grain 01-07-2011 07:57 PM

The two best modern design 357 magnum loads with above average terminal performance incorporate Barnes copper HP's:


Federal:
** 140-gr. Barnes Expander (P357XB1)


Corbon – Dakota Ammo:
** 125-gr. DPX [Barnes XPB] Copper HP (DPX357125-20)

roaddog28 01-07-2011 08:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 8-Shot (Post 135750161)
I went to the range and tried 25 rounds of both. The 158gr seemed to group better for me from point shoulder shooting and from supported positions. I'm going to go with the 158gr. Thanks for all your opinions. I know some feel it's a foolish idea to carry a revolver in this day and age, but I shoot it so much better than our glocks. We also had a bad problem with our model 22 and a failure to feed. I also feel that with all the 1911 and Sig p220's around with 8-10 rounds magazines that I'm not that out gunned. I can reload with my moon clips as fast as most with a semi-auto. I also like the stopping power and reputation of the 357 along with the reliability of a revolver. Once again thank you all for your thoughts and opinions on this. I feel that your opinions are better than most published "experts".

Hi 8-shot. It looks like you made the right decision. The round that you shoot the best and you can make hits is what counts. Myself I prefer in 357 the 158gr round hollow points. In a four inch revolver they will usually hit POA. The full house 125gr has the better one time shot take down according to all the reports but I have fired them and followup shots are slower for me.The Remington Golden Saber is a great round. But it is a medium power round. I would think this round would be a better home defense round than a urban outdoor round. Too me the 158gr will penatrate better and is more accurate overall.
Good luck and if I were in your shoes I would carry a revolver too if the department would let me. I am head and shoulders better with a revolver than a semi-auto.

Howard

sheriffoconee 01-07-2011 09:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 147_Grain (Post 135767534)
The two best modern design 357 magnum loads with above average terminal performance incorporate Barnes copper HP's:


Federal:
** 140-gr. Barnes Expander (P357XB1)


Corbon Dakota Ammo:
** 125-gr. DPX [Barnes XPB] Copper HP (DPX357125-20)

Could you please provide the shooting/after action/autopsy reports of documents shootings of humans with these rounds.
If you don't feel you can post them, my work email address is
sberry@oconeesheriff.org
Oconee County Sheriff's Office - Oconee County, Georgia

ColColt 01-09-2011 01:55 PM

I just bought some SJHP Remington 125gr Hollow Points...not easy to come by it seems. This and the Federal 125 gr round is what gave the 357 it's reputation and it's a good start to emulate that. There are others no doubt as good but, these old standbys are pretty good of their own.

XTrooper 01-09-2011 06:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ColColt (Post 135770065)
I just bought some SJHP Remington 125gr Hollow Points...not easy to come by it seems.

My local Walmart regularly has these in stock. Check yours.

Sully 01-09-2011 07:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 8-Shot (Post 135750161)
I went to the range and tried 25 rounds of both. The 158gr seemed to group better for me from point shoulder shooting and from supported positions. I'm going to go with the 158gr. Thanks for all your opinions. I know some feel it's a foolish idea to carry a revolver in this day and age, but I shoot it so much better than our glocks. We also had a bad problem with our model 22 and a failure to feed. I also feel that with all the 1911 and Sig p220's around with 8-10 rounds magazines that I'm not that out gunned. I can reload with my moon clips as fast as most with a semi-auto. I also like the stopping power and reputation of the 357 along with the reliability of a revolver. Once again thank you all for your thoughts and opinions on this. I feel that your opinions are better than most published "experts".

Id prefer to carry a sharpened stick as carry a Glock!

Ive had 9mmauto's...and 45 ACP autos...and sold all of them and went BACK to S&W wheelguns. If my .357's or my 44 mag cant get it done..nothing will. I have speedloaders for all and dont feel 1 bit "undergunned".

CountyDepOK 04-26-2014 11:15 PM

8-Shot... I am a new deputy in Oklahoma and also wanting to carry the 627 as a duty weapon, but it seems impossible to find a duty holster.. Sarfariland is still making them for the K/L frames (hence I think I may have to carry my 686), but not for the 627. What duty holster are you using?

t2203 04-26-2014 11:33 PM

Genius…. yes it actually is. I started my career 20 years ago carrying my Smith Wesson 19. I have the option to carry it again where I am working. When the new kids come in they say yeah I am limiting myself with old technology. Then I take then outside and out run them with their Glocks. Point is I practice. I can outrun a semi with it and I have full confidence with my equipment. You look at the stat for the police actions, at least where I am, and 6 rounds is sufficient. As far as ammo choices in my gun I like the 158 for longevity (less cracked forcing cones) and excellent results on the street.

badge 04-26-2014 11:35 PM

X-Trooper has it right. I too am a dyed in the wool revolver man and my JOB would only allow semi auto's if you were in our stakeout unit or K-9 back in the stone age. After several shootings where officers needed more than 6 or faced multiple assailants, all officers were permitted to transition to semi auto's. Granted, this is the late 70's and early 80's but police work stays the same. If you must use the revolver, use the round that you are most comfortable with and can fire accurately and rapidly the best.

texmex 04-26-2014 11:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CountyDepOK (Post 137868508)
8-Shot... I am a new deputy in Oklahoma and also wanting to carry the 627 as a duty weapon, but it seems impossible to find a duty holster.. Sarfariland is still making them for the K/L frames (hence I think I may have to carry my 686), but not for the 627. What duty holster are you using?

I find duty holsters at gun shows. The last new one I bought was a nylon one from Don Hume. I bet you can get an N frame duty holster from them. Bianchi also makes an N frame version of the Cruizer holster.

Boge 04-29-2014 03:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sheriffoconee (Post 135767677)
Could you please provide the shooting/after action/autopsy reports of documents shootings of humans with these rounds.
If you don't feel you can post them, my work email address is
sberry@oconeesheriff.org
Oconee County Sheriff's Office - Oconee County, Georgia

I know of none with the .357. I have read & heard of about five shootings with Corbon DPX out of a semi-auto service size semi-auto and all were DRT, however to be objective all were solid COM hits at close range if I recall.

That said, I still have some old Federal 125 gr. JHP's that clock just under 1,400 in a 3" .357. Of course, the OP does not have these on his list. I would go with the 125 gr. Golden Saber on his list.

It will be 50 yrs. before there are enough Street results on SCHP's as they are simply not in common usage, most likely due to price. However, we can extrapolate very well how they will work based upon thousands of objective scientific tests as compared to how other rounds did in the same tests and their Street results. Is it the same as actual shootings? Of course not. The one thing that is almost always guaranteed with SCHP's is that they out perform any other handgun bullet under adverse conditions, i.e., through barriers, as well as they almost always seem to mushroom whereas many other JHP's do not with 100% certainty.

Just my opinion and worth what you were charged.

XTrooper 04-29-2014 04:23 PM

If I were to carry a .357 Magnum revolver today, it would be loaded with Winchester 145gr Silvertips. They are still the best of the .357 Magnum loads, in my view, and have an enviable track record.

amd6547 04-29-2014 07:35 PM

I have seen exactly one box of 357 Silvertip in the last five years. I wish Winchester would make some.

thomasinaz 04-29-2014 08:48 PM

CountyDepOK; For my 627 Pro I'm using a Bianchi N frame holster in ballistic nylon, for field work. For dress occasions I'm carrying in a Tex Shoemaker black basketweave leather duty holster. Our agency issues the Speer Gold Dot 125 gr 357 mag, which is moving at around 1450 fps out of the 4" guns. It's almost identical to the 357 Sig 125 gr Gold Dot, also at around 1450 fps.....


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