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  #1  
Old 12-27-2012, 11:14 PM
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Default Need something mild in .38sp for spouse

Brought home a Model 10-7 snubbie this weekend.

Showed it to my wife and I think she will make it her EDC

She has shot 130grain FMJ White box Winchester .38special in the past in other K frame snubs without much complaint.

Would appreciate any guidance for a Self Defense wadcutter or something with similar recoil characteristics to the Winchester 130grain.

In time, hopefully she will grow into a +P

Thanks...Rob
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Old 12-27-2012, 11:49 PM
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I think +P ammo is extremely over rated my self out of a snub nose barrel. +P ammo does kinda make since in something like a 4inch + Revolver are even a rifle. The shot barrels of a snub nose really don't give the powder the extra time it needs to get up to velocity.

Personally my EDC is a snub nose revolver my self. I have it loaded with 1 of 3 rounds 2 of which are pretty soft shooters.

Depending on when the gun was made I have found https://www.buffalobore.com/index.ph...t_detail&p=110 are wonderful loads based off the old FBI load. I have read they are not to be used in Smith and Wesson Revolvers with the micro rifling, something about the soft lead gunking up the rifle groves and then causing a over pressure. This is not a issue for me since my revolver was made in the early late 60's early 70's

The other round I typically carry is Federal Premium - Handgun Details
They shoot soft are accurate in my gun. I have also seen where they have great expansion on them.

The other round I occasionally carry is Hornady Manufacturing Company :: Ammunition :: Handgun :: Choose by Caliber :: 38 Special :: 38 Special 158 gr XTP®

Personally I like the round but I have read mixed results with testing as far as expansion goes. The bullet hits extremely hard but does not always have the velocity to expand so it can act like a FMJ round.
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HotRoderX View Post
I think +P ammo is extremely over rated my self out of a snub nose barrel. +P ammo does kinda make since in something like a 4inch + Revolver are even a rifle.
I thought +P was better for short barrels because the increased velocity compensated for the shorter barrel, and increased the likelihood of adequate penetration and expansion?
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wnr700 View Post
Would appreciate any guidance for a Self Defense wadcutter or something with similar recoil characteristics to the Winchester 130grain.

In time, hopefully she will grow into a +P

Thanks...Rob
I shoot Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel 135 grain .38 Special +P and Hornady Critical Defense 110 grain .38 Special standard pressure out of an Airweight J-frame; I've also put boxes of WWB through it.

I feel no discernible difference in recoil, flash and report between any of these rounds -- all quite manageable.
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Hapworth View Post
I thought +P was better for short barrels because the increased velocity compensated for the shorter barrel, and increased the likelihood of adequate penetration and expansion?
I have heard the exact opposite because all a +P is loaded with is more powder. That powder does not have a chance to fully burn and build pressure up out of such a short barrel. Thus the +P loads does not give much more velocity over standard loads if any. Most velocity test you read on manufactures sights are out of 4-6inch barrels. Unless other wise state. I do think there are some loads out there tailored to snub nose style revolvers thought and they might be velocity tested in snub nose size barrels.

Now you really do have me curious maybe one of the re loaders will see this and chime in.
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HotRoderX View Post
I have heard the exact opposite because all a +P is loaded with is more powder. That powder does not have a chance to fully burn and build pressure up out of such a short barrel. Thus the +P loads does not give much more velocity over standard loads if any. Most velocity test you read on manufactures sights are out of 4-6inch barrels. Unless other wise state. I do think there are some loads out there tailored to snub nose style revolvers thought and they might be velocity tested in snub nose size barrels.

Now you really do have me curious maybe one of the re loaders will see this and chime in.
I'm guessing it comes down to the burn rate of the powder. The Speer Short Barrel powder is optimized for faster burn. I'd like to know more, too...
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Old 12-28-2012, 01:20 AM
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The Winchester 110gr silver tip and Federal 125gr Nyclad are the ligtest SD loads for the light weight J frame snub nose revolver in the 13 to 16oz class..............and with the light penetration two shots or more may be needed.

The lighest recoil with a medium 135gr factory Gold Dot is about as good as it gets for minimum recoil in a SD +P load for a snub nose.

For lead bullet SD the 148 BBwc will not seperate or tumble at high velositys like the HBwc bullet, which makes it the best for light lead bullets that will penetrate without the heavy recoil of the 158 swc lead bullets with velositys near 850 fps. Fast 148 BBwc bullets can over penetrate if pushed too hard so you need to find a load that will work for the lady and your revolver c/o recoil and velositys.
Remington's 148 HBwc out of a snub nose run around 640fps and have only 135 ft/lbs of energy. You can get 197ft/lbs if it can get a 148 gr up to 775 fps which has more energy and penetration than the winchester 110gr Jhp.
Buffalo Bore has a 150 gr lead wc you might look into if the Jacket bullets do not work out for you.

That 34oz Steel K frame snub nose should do well with the spouse and in time, hope she will get a bang out of shooting some +P ammo.

Last edited by Nevada Ed; 01-11-2013 at 01:29 AM.
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hapworth View Post
I'm guessing it comes down to the burn rate of the powder. The Speer Short Barrel powder is optimized for faster burn. I'd like to know more, too...
Advertising hype. There may be reasons to use faster burning powders in short barrels, like reduced muzzle flash, but achieving higher velocities is not one of them.

It's been proven time and time again that the powder that shows the highest velocity in long barrels will also show the highest velocity in short barrels. If you want fun, shoot a load of WW296 in a 2.5" M19. You get both decent velocity and a muzzle flash that will catch your eyebrows on fire.
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichiganScott View Post
If you want fun, shoot a load of WW296 in a 2.5" M19. You get both decent velocity and a muzzle flash that will catch your eyebrows on fire.
But mine just grew back...
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  #10  
Old 12-28-2012, 11:08 AM
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Even though it carries a +P headstamp , the Glaser Safety Slug is very fast , yet very light and has little recoil , even in my 37 Airweight. They're very effective.
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Old 12-28-2012, 11:10 AM
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A standard 148 grain FULL WADCUTTER will work just fine for up close self defense.

You don't need to shoot very far for self defense or you place yourself in jeopardy
of a Prosecutor for possible murder charges.

If you want to shoot farther, get a rifle, across a large living room, use a 12 gauge with 7 or 8 shot
and aim at upper body or the head. That will end the fight.

I use wadcutters all the time for ladies training with snubbies and even the Airweight Snubbies.

The purpose is to NOT INDUCE A FLINCH.

Leave the +P's and Buffalo Bore loads for LEO's and RAMBO'S.

If you live in a VERY BAD NEIGHBORHOOD, or have drug dealers for neighbors, you needs will change.

I'd try relocating first, rather that a more powerful cartridge.
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Old 12-28-2012, 11:18 AM
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I second the use of full wadcutters. Much better for those who are not seasoned shooters, without the recoil and muzzle blast. And they will do the job.
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Old 12-28-2012, 11:35 AM
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Start her out on 700-800 fps lead Wadcutters....Almost like shooting a .22 pop gun. If you reload you can customize loads for her. Once she gets used to the noise and recoil, let her decide what she likes to shoot for carry loads.

I use 850 fps lead Wadcutter or lead semi-Wadcutter in all my short guns. They make very good up close and personal medicine for bad guys, and aren't at all hard recoiling for most people.

If you can, persuade her to use ear plugs and ear muffs. It's been my experience that the noise has a lot to do with the perceived recoil. Make sure you encourage her and keep her involved and before you know it, she will give you a run for your money!!
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Old 12-28-2012, 04:49 PM
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If soft recoil characteristics are paramount, the Hornady 110 gr. FTX seems to be well regarded. The "old stalwart" 148 gr. wadcutter is also not a bad choice, but it's not a magic bullet by any stretch of the imagination either.

I can't say I've extensively fired Remington's LHP +P through snub nosed K-frames, but I can tell you from personal experience that it's a peach to shoot from 3" and 4" barrels, and I wouldn't say it's terribly unmanagable in an all steel J frame either. You might want to keep it in mind if your wife should become acclimated enough to handle the modest increase in felt recoil.

Ultimately, the "best" choice is what she can shoot the most accurately through her individual M10. I would recommend you try different loadings including the ones suggested by others (with the exception of overpriced "boutique" ammo like Buffalo Bore) and see which ones work best for her.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:22 PM
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110 grain Federal Hydra-shok low recoil .38 Special, works for me.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:42 PM
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I like LSWC in any lower velocity handgun. They will put a hurtin' on anyone.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:48 PM
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Quote:
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I second the use of full wadcutters. Much better for those who are not seasoned shooters, without the recoil and muzzle blast. And they will do the job.
Good advice, sir.
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:53 PM
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TOO many Men both husbands and boyfriends do not take into account the size and strength of most females hands.

This causes many of the misunderstandings and improper advice choices.
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Old 12-30-2012, 11:35 AM
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Hornady has a new loading of their Critical Defense 38 special load. They call it Critical Defense Lite, it's a 90 grain load so it should be pretty light recoiling. It looks like to me it will duplicate a good 380 load.
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hannstv View Post
Hornady has a new loading of their Critical Defense 38 special load. They call it Critical Defense Lite, it's a 90 grain load so it should be pretty light recoiling. It looks like to me it will duplicate a good 380 load.
I just got a box of those....haven't had a chance to fire them yet.
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:47 PM
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Scroll down the page a bit for hard cast wadcutters at std velocities:

https://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l=search_list&s[search]=&s[title]=Y&s[short_desc]=Y&s[full_desc]=Y&s[sku]=Y&s[match]=all&s[cid]=23

And some background information on full power wadcutter philosophy. Yup, Ed Harris again.

Ed Harris: Revisiting The Full Charge Wadcutter | Reloading, Ammunition, Hunting | GrantCunningham.com
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Old 12-30-2012, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hannstv View Post
Hornady has a new loading of their Critical Defense 38 special load. They call it Critical Defense Lite, it's a 90 grain load so it should be pretty light recoiling. It looks like to me it will duplicate a good 380 load.
Yes, a good idea... but Hornady with their ever increasing penchant for marking fads decided to put "pink" polymer tips on them, and part of the sales proceeds go to Breast Cancer Awareness.

Last edited by Chris L.; 12-30-2012 at 01:51 PM.
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Old 12-31-2012, 02:06 PM
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Is a wadcutter suitable for self defense? I thought wadcutters were more for target shooting.
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Old 12-31-2012, 06:25 PM
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Semi-wadcutters have been demonstrated to be lethal rounds moving at subsonic speeds from 2" revolver barrels. Full wadcutters are ideal for target shooting.
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Old 12-31-2012, 10:16 PM
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+P ammo is a gimmick. When you reload, you realize this. There is nothing special about the brass, primers, etc. A touch more powder, that's it. Stick with anything Hornady makes.
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Old 12-31-2012, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by all357mag View Post
+P ammo is a gimmick. When you reload, you realize this. There is nothing special about the brass, primers, etc. A touch more powder, that's it. Stick with anything Hornady makes.
I guess that depends on what you mean by gimmick. +P today is what standard pressure was forty years ago -- that might be gimmicky, I suppose.

But today's +P is still different from today's standard pressure.

Take Hornady, since you like them (I do, too): their 110 grain .38 Special Critical Defense rounds, standard versus +P, produce different terminal ballistics when shot from the same barrel into the same media -- so there are differences.

How do you mean "gimmick"?
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:29 PM
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Default Just a little more velocity

A semi-wadcutter round would be a good place to start for a HD round as they can be driven faster than hollow base wadcutters. You do get a little more velocity with a +P round, but the gain in velocity over standard rounds is not very much in a snub compared to longer barrels. And in a model 10 there is still not going to be much increase in recoil. They do flash and bang a little more though and that's kind of fun. I do use +P to keep around the house just in case.

Last edited by rwsmith; 01-05-2013 at 09:34 PM. Reason: revise
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