Smith & Wesson Forum

Go Back   Smith & Wesson Forum > >


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 04-05-2017, 04:32 PM
BoogersXDm's Avatar
BoogersXDm BoogersXDm is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 25
Likes: 20
Liked 21 Times in 8 Posts
Default Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum

Lucky Gunner just released some good test data for wheelguns, thought I'd drop by and spread it around after reading the epic threads here regarding such, figured there'd be alot of interest.

http://www.luckygunner.com/labs/revo...llistics-test/

Reply With Quote
The Following 10 Users Like Post:
  #2  
Old 04-05-2017, 05:21 PM
SuperMan SuperMan is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Rochester, NH USA
Posts: 2,412
Likes: 236
Liked 1,758 Times in 626 Posts
Default

Thanks...

Nicely done as was their series on semi-auto pistol cartridges...

Bob
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #3  
Old 04-05-2017, 05:40 PM
ISCS Yoda's Avatar
ISCS Yoda ISCS Yoda is offline
US Veteran
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Dallas, Texas
Posts: 3,881
Likes: 757
Liked 3,442 Times in 1,582 Posts
Default

Really nicely done. I will refer to this article many times until I have digested all of it!
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #4  
Old 04-05-2017, 05:51 PM
Model520Fan Model520Fan is offline
US Veteran
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: MA
Posts: 5,254
Likes: 2,789
Liked 2,492 Times in 1,246 Posts
Default

IMO, this is a VERY worthwhile link. It is on each reader to interpret the results and to read the caveats, but this is useful info.

BoogersXDm, this is a great beginning. Welcome to the forum!
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #5  
Old 04-05-2017, 06:03 PM
Brasso4 Brasso4 is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Alabama
Posts: 58
Likes: 6
Liked 49 Times in 29 Posts
Default

Those .38spl Barnes loads looked wicked. All jacket. Can you imagine what that would do to soft tissue? Like a Ginsu knife.
__________________
Qoheleth 12:13-14
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 04-05-2017, 07:35 PM
BoogersXDm's Avatar
BoogersXDm BoogersXDm is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 25
Likes: 20
Liked 21 Times in 8 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Model520Fan View Post
IMO, this is a VERY worthwhile link. It is on each reader to interpret the results and to read the caveats, but this is useful info.

BoogersXDm, this is a great beginning. Welcome to the forum!
I'm only paying it forward.

Your forum here has been a useful reference for me for almost 2 decades now.

Now I'm just gonna sit back here and wait for you guys to start discussing the results. So many knowledgeable folks hang out here it's why I thought of posting the link here first.

Last edited by BoogersXDm; 04-05-2017 at 07:37 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Like Post:
  #7  
Old 04-05-2017, 08:09 PM
DWalt's Avatar
DWalt DWalt is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: South Texas
Posts: 19,241
Likes: 2
Liked 9,981 Times in 5,724 Posts
Default

Many love to cuss and discuss the merits of different loads and bullet types, but the fact is that a plain lead or FMJ bullet will be good enough if you hit the target in the right area and if the bullet is moving fast enough to get there to do its job. I don't get hung up on the latest bullet of the week.
Reply With Quote
The Following 6 Users Like Post:
  #8  
Old 04-05-2017, 08:42 PM
Arik Arik is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Outside Philadelphia Pa
Posts: 14,956
Likes: 6,548
Liked 14,790 Times in 6,380 Posts
Default

I wonder how much difference the none FBI gell makes. On this one it shows Gold Dot 135gr short barrel +P barely expanded but I've seen them on FBI gell shot from snub nose and they expanded beautifully

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 04-05-2017, 08:47 PM
Arik Arik is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Outside Philadelphia Pa
Posts: 14,956
Likes: 6,548
Liked 14,790 Times in 6,380 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DWalt View Post
Many love to cuss and discuss the merits of different loads and bullet types, but the fact is that a plain lead or FMJ bullet will be good enough if you hit the target in the right area and if the bullet is moving fast enough to get there to do its job. I don't get hung up on the latest bullet of the week.
A lot of IFs.

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Like Post:
  #10  
Old 04-05-2017, 09:31 PM
BoogersXDm's Avatar
BoogersXDm BoogersXDm is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 25
Likes: 20
Liked 21 Times in 8 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DWalt View Post
....the fact is that a plain lead or FMJ bullet will be good enough if you hit the target in the right area and if the bullet is moving fast enough to get there to do its job.
No argument there. I think choosing a good load is just another little thing to stack in one's favor.

I'm also a little bit of a ballistics nerd myself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arik View Post
I wonder how much difference the none FBI gell makes. On this one it shows Gold Dot 135gr short barrel +P barely expanded but I've seen them on FBI gell shot from snub nose and they expanded beautifully
I've seen differences in tests across the board. I would never attempt to claim any load is the "one to rule them all" first off, and certainly not based on one test.

Its just a very well done data point among many.

I think if someone is interested in stacking the deck in their favor (beyond, of course, carrying a gun in and of itself) by being picky about their load, the best thing they could do, short of taking the advice of people who actually have had to use such, is look over all the tests they can find.
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Like Post:
  #11  
Old 04-05-2017, 09:43 PM
Arik Arik is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Outside Philadelphia Pa
Posts: 14,956
Likes: 6,548
Liked 14,790 Times in 6,380 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by BoogersXDm View Post
No argument there. I think choosing a good load is just another little thing to stack in one's favor.

I'm also a little bit of a ballistics nerd myself.



I've seen differences in tests across the board. I would never attempt to claim any load is the "one to rule them all" first off, and certainly not based on one test.

Its just a very well done data point among many.

I think if someone is interested in stacking the deck in their favor (beyond, of course, carrying a gun in and of itself) by being picky about their load, the best thing they could do, short of taking the advice of people who actually have had to use such, is look over all the tests they can find.
I understand having variations but the two are very different. One test they expand as should and the other none at all (almost). Could be a batch difference or the gell. Only way to tell is to have as many of the variables as possible be the same. This wasn't

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #12  
Old 04-05-2017, 09:55 PM
Nevada Ed's Avatar
Nevada Ed Nevada Ed is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Reno Nv
Posts: 5,961
Likes: 163
Liked 3,163 Times in 1,644 Posts
Default

110 Federal Hydra Sucks....
125 Shok .39dia. hellow...
158 Fed. at 794... .35 Dia. zero expansion
Horn. 110 FTX only 858fps .44 Dia. .... WOW!!
Rem. 125 GS 877fps .62 Dia. ......looking good.
Speer 135 821 (?) .44 dia. ............ fair

Each test has a low and high spot from the others.................

The 135 GD in my almost 2" gets 866fps.
Still nice to see more data and test, though.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #13  
Old 04-05-2017, 10:00 PM
BoogersXDm's Avatar
BoogersXDm BoogersXDm is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special & .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 25
Likes: 20
Liked 21 Times in 8 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arik View Post
Could be a batch difference or the gell.
I don't know.

I do know this isn't the only test I've seen where the Gold Dot is inconsistent.

<b>.38spl: Hornady FTX vs. Speer 135gr GDHP vs. CorBon 110gr DPX</b>

Pocket Guns and Gear: Speer Gold Dot 38 Special +P 135 Grain Short Barrel Denim and Clear Gel Test

ETA- This doesn't mean the Gold Dot is bunk. Far from it. Contrary to the tests above, I keep reading that police that use this load are happy with it. I like it fine myself.

Last edited by BoogersXDm; 04-05-2017 at 10:03 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 04-05-2017, 10:04 PM
gman51 gman51 is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Just West of Houston
Posts: 1,458
Likes: 330
Liked 1,647 Times in 783 Posts
Default

I was surprised the Speer gold dot didn't show better results with all the hype about them.
I also was surprised the 2" wasn't all that inferior to the 4" barrel as so many claim.
By this chart I feel carrying the +P is a good choice over the 357 because of the 357 cons over penetration, more flash, more recoil, deafening greater sound. What are your conclusions from this test?
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #15  
Old 04-05-2017, 10:09 PM
BoogersXDm's Avatar
BoogersXDm BoogersXDm is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 25
Likes: 20
Liked 21 Times in 8 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by gman51 View Post
I was surprised the Speer gold dot didn't show better results with all the hype about them.
I also was surprised the 2" wasn't all that inferior to the 4" barrel as so many claim.
By this chart I feel carrying the +P is a good choice over the 357 because of the 357 cons over penetration, more flash, more recoil, deafening greater sound. What are your conclusions from this test?
I think if you can handle a .357 snubnose you can't really go wrong. Its a world of difference between the magnum and the .38 special, which I would say is still more then adequate for the job at hand, should that be your choice.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 04-05-2017, 10:16 PM
Targets Guy's Avatar
Targets Guy Targets Guy is online now
US Veteran
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Southwest Iowa
Posts: 5,068
Likes: 908
Liked 7,842 Times in 2,292 Posts
Default

Thanks for the data.
__________________
Mike
S&WCA #3065
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #17  
Old 04-05-2017, 11:42 PM
shouldazagged shouldazagged is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Louisville, KY, USA
Posts: 16,232
Likes: 30,359
Liked 29,961 Times in 9,404 Posts
Default

A number of surprises there. I'll continue, for now, to carry the Buffalo Bore standard pressure equivalent of the good original FBI load, as I have for years; but I used to carry 125gr. +P Golden Saber, and it certainly performed well in these tests.
__________________
Bring me the head of Waldo.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #18  
Old 04-06-2017, 12:29 AM
rwsmith's Avatar
rwsmith rwsmith is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: (outside) Charleston, SC
Posts: 21,226
Likes: 24,929
Liked 17,014 Times in 8,504 Posts
Default Just overall impressed....

Thanks for posting this and thanks to Lucky Gunner for doing such a good job of testing many mainstream loads under more realistic conditions, especially between 2" and 4", which really surprised me with some unexpected results that could make a difference into what I load with either length. If somebody asks what's best, I just tell them than any major brand's defense loadings will work and that advice doesn't seem too far off.

__________________
"He was kinda funny lookin'"
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #19  
Old 04-06-2017, 01:02 AM
Duckford Duckford is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 293
Likes: 339
Liked 404 Times in 142 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brasso4 View Post
Those .38spl Barnes loads looked wicked. All jacket. Can you imagine what that would do to soft tissue? Like a Ginsu knife.
Precisely why they aren't as impressive, not nearly, as the final maximum expanded bullet diameter would suggest. Tiny thin cuts don't do much damage, but a big dull crushing nose does. The final maximum diameter does not represent the average over all diameter of the expanded head, and the sharper the petals, the less disruption and crush they do, and the more low quality cut they do, meaning a rounder, more mushroom expanded face of the same diameter is far better, in fact, mushrooms with smaller final diameter probably do far better damage. Just take a good look at the minimum diameter, that's about right back down to original diameter, with big ol pie shapes missing. Not very impressive, not in the least.

As expected, the 110 grain bullets in 38 were terrible, either they had poor expansion to no expansion, or saw penetration failure. The 90 grain, as always, the laughing stock of the bunch. The 125's came in as failures as well, poor performance. Winchester's 130 grain bullets did fantastic, absolutely dead on the money, save for the PDX 2 inch barrel which can be discarded outright as unacceptable. Although other tests showed the 135 Gold Dot to have promise, according to this test, it flunked out. XTP appears to be too heavily constructed for 38 Special in this round of testing. Remington's FBI load was a top grade performer, but the others were clogged with denim or simply too hard a lead alloy to work properly.

2 inch barrel velocity losses for these two lengths showed that length and velocity can matter. The snub nose showed a lot more failure, and the difficulties faced with low energy bullet and proper designs.

357 Magnum wise, we see the engineering problem with excess handgun power. Penetrations over the 18 inch mark is common for this caliber, so not actually too surprising. Again, once you factor in the minimum expansion of Barnes, they aren't impressive in the least. 158 grain Gold Dot are under powered, so we can't get a good feel of the bullet's capability with better loading. Looking at bullets of all makes, fragmentation and "curl back" seem to be issues, curl back being where the expanded diameter begins to bend backwards so much that it crushes over and decreases the final expanded diameter. Barrel lengths and velocity change once again heavily altered performance, meaning load should match capability of gun.

In 4 inch barrel, the 135 grain Golddot stands head and shoulders bout the crowd, clearly. The 110 Corbon, being as light weigh as it is, came in very impressive, The 130 grain Hydoshock was superb and showed great consistency, making it a very viable choice. The PDX did well again, but its inferior expanded shape has to be taken into account, as well as final expanded irregularities.

The legendary old SJHP were the most interesting to see. The 125 grain failed utterly in the 2 inch barrel, but performed admirably in 4 inch, but showed signs of fragmentation. The 158 grain showed great shape and consistency in the 2 inch barrel, a worthy carry consideration, but in 4 inch it shows the same kind of mushroom shedding I found in my own test of the 158 grain SWCHP Speer handload. This would suggest a more sturdy bullet design is in order for this type of velocity.

Over all, very interesting results, and remember folks, keep watching more videos, reading more reports, and doing more research, because one test isn't as good as many valid tests. Gives me some direction on my own research into the future.

Last edited by Duckford; 04-06-2017 at 01:11 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 04-06-2017, 01:27 AM
hkcavalier hkcavalier is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Eastern WA
Posts: 914
Likes: 114
Liked 1,100 Times in 360 Posts
Default

Neat to see the "ancient" Hydra-Shok hold up well in these tests. I don't know why Winchester's offerings don't get more pub. They are GREAT in pretty much all of Luckygunner's tests.

Also neat to see that my logic is pretty sound. .38 should have heavier bullets since you're just not going to have the velocity. So I buy 158gr .38 JHPs and 125gr .357 JHPs. While I don't get into the .44 Mag self-defense too much, 165-200gr seems like the sweet spot there.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #21  
Old 04-06-2017, 11:46 AM
BoogersXDm's Avatar
BoogersXDm BoogersXDm is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 25
Likes: 20
Liked 21 Times in 8 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brasso4 View Post
Those .38spl Barnes loads looked wicked. All jacket. Can you imagine what that would do to soft tissue? Like a Ginsu knife.
I could be mistaken, but I think they tested this load only in .357 mag. I didn't see it in the .38 special lineup.



Just my own input.

I'll stick to discussing mostly 2" snub .38 special because that, along with a .45 and, yes, a pocket .380, are what I regularly carry-

Overall, you won't see good expansion and penetration much past 13-14" in 2" barrels, when a projectile actually expands well. That being said, .38 special ain't no .380, and making the 12" minimum with decent expansion isn't too difficult for many loads tested here. While many would call the .380 barely adequate or even inadequate for self defense especially from very short barrels, I'd call the .38 special mostly adequate even from a snubnose gun.

I wouldn't bother with anything tested here from Federal in my snubnose. I don't see their excellent new HST tested here so this is not an indictment of the brand at all. Just from what I see in this test (and I might go looking for some HST tests in .38 special just cause I'm curious now) I'd avoid Federal.

I also wouldn't bother with wadcutters for self defense these days, because there are a couple decent non- +p JHP loads that do very well as shown in this test. (The Hornady 110gr. Critical Defense FTX and the Winchester 130gr. Train and Defend are both decent loads at standard pressures).

The Hornady Critical Defense 110gr. FTX did ok overall, in my opinion, with very consistent performance even though it was puzzling to see the lack of penetration in the +p load from the 4" barrel. It looked decent in the 2", with all but one bullet pulling past the 12" mark for expansion of which was a very consistent and adequate spread to .48" average, and the non- +p load did so well in both length barrels that if someone wanted to find a good load without all the +p pop, thats what I'd suggest.
I'd stay away from the 90 grain load unless there is some other compelling reason to use it like extreme recoil sensitivity. I can't imagine that it would be that much lower in recoil then the 110gr non- +p that it justifies the sacrifice in performance, but some people might see things otherwise. I guess its an option, if you really need it.
The Hornady XTP loadings, however, were a washout in this test. Wouldn't bother with them in my snub.

The Remington Golden Saber 125gr +p didn't do too badly, it made ok penetration but in the 2" tube expansion was somewhat inconsistent(but still more then adequate). I'm continually impressed that for such a dated design, and in most calibers, it can hold its own vs. the newer stuff.

That Winchester 130grain +p PDX1 and Ranger Bonded did very well. But do note- in the 2" tube, it too suffered at least one round that fell short of the 12" mark and the PDX1 wasn't as consistent expansion-wise in the 2" barrel. Expansion was most impressive and consistent, however, with the Ranger load, and if you were looking for a bonded load for your .38 special I think this is just the ticket.
The Train and Defend stuff was ok, too. While not the most consistent in expansion, as a non +p load it deserves consideration for those seeking such based on its performance in this test.

Of note is how interesting it is to see that 110 grain bullets, when driven faster by either a longer barrel or by adding oomph by driving them to +p and +p+ levels, they seem to fall shorter, as demonstrated by the Hornady FTX +p load in the 4" barrel and the Winchester +p+. There seems to be a point of diminishing returns here, as you increase the velocity of the lighter 110 grain projectile.

The FBI load- With Remington, there was discussion here that I read that it had changed from the Express line to the HTP line. It seems like that may be the case as shown by velocity in this test, but the load still seems to be the only one (of the major manufacturers Federal, Winchester, and Remington) that -could- mushroom from a snub, if one is inclined to carry LSWCHP's over JHP's. I'd keep it around for practice and/or bulk (as its usually found reasonably priced and does more then FMJ), with the Buffalo Bore rendition for actual carry in either +p or non- +p. The upset displayed here for the Remington load in the 2" barrel used in this test seems to show that Remington should increase its velocity by just a mere 50fps overall, and it would be a top performer. As it is, its mediocre from a snub, but stellar from a 4".
Wouldn't even bother with the other manufactures renditions of the FBI load tested here. Maybe the Winchester if you have a 4" (or more) barrel and can find it for a song.

I'm not surprised by the performance of the Speer Gold Dot 135gr. As I said above, this isn't the first test I've seen it have consistency issues and issues penetrating heavy clothing barriers. But then in other tests it does well, and overall, the same can be said about all of these tests-

They don't always show the exact same thing happen.

I think this is because there are variables from the type of gun used to the gel shot, what people use in front of the gel, and the differences in lots of ammo.

And further, word of mouth from police and others who actually use a load is something to consider besides testing and the Gold Dot seems to have a good reputation from such.
I wouldn't write it off based on this test at all.

If I were to declare a "winner" here in .38 special it would be the 4" barrel.

In all seriousness- many of the loads tested here did well. I'd conclude that your best option would be to choose a good load from a reputable manufacturer that works well for you in your gun and stick with it.

Last edited by BoogersXDm; 04-06-2017 at 02:37 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #22  
Old 04-11-2017, 11:42 PM
Robenstein Robenstein is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Central, Iowa U.S.A.
Posts: 27
Likes: 1
Liked 73 Times in 9 Posts
Default

This test has me wondering if I should just demote my Underwood 125 gr 38 special loads from defense to target ammo for my model 67. Underwood advertises them at 1200fps, which is hot for a 38 and awfully close to the 125 grain Speer load performance in the 2inch 357 magnum test.

Anyone care to chime in on that?
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 04-12-2017, 07:57 AM
Arik Arik is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Outside Philadelphia Pa
Posts: 14,956
Likes: 6,548
Liked 14,790 Times in 6,380 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robenstein View Post
This test has me wondering if I should just demote my Underwood 125 gr 38 special loads from defense to target ammo for my model 67. Underwood advertises them at 1200fps, which is hot for a 38 and awfully close to the 125 grain Speer load performance in the 2inch 357 magnum test.

Anyone care to chime in on that?
Do you mean it's too powerful or not powerful enough? I'm kinda confused.

You're more than welcome to test that load in gel and see what happens

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 04-12-2017, 02:50 PM
Robenstein Robenstein is offline
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Central, Iowa U.S.A.
Posts: 27
Likes: 1
Liked 73 Times in 9 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arik View Post
Do you mean it's too powerful or not powerful enough? I'm kinda confused.

You're more than welcome to test that load in gel and see what happens

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
The 125 grain Speers going 1200fps all failed to expand. It is not an issue of power or lack thereof, but of non expansion. The underwood load I bought uses the same bullet and is advertised at an identical velocity .
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 04-12-2017, 02:57 PM
Arik Arik is online now
Member
Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum Some interesting new ballistics testing for .38 special &amp; .357 magnum  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Outside Philadelphia Pa
Posts: 14,956
Likes: 6,548
Liked 14,790 Times in 6,380 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robenstein View Post
The 125 grain Speers going 1200fps all failed to expand. It is not an issue of power or lack thereof, but of non expansion. The underwood load I bought uses the same bullet and is advertised at an identical velocity .
Disregard

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk

Last edited by Arik; 04-12-2017 at 02:58 PM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New Ballistics testing for .45 Shield! gqllc007 Smith & Wesson M&P Pistols 11 01-23-2017 03:42 PM
44 Magnum Clear Ballistics Gel test Savvy Jack The Lounge 1 08-21-2014 09:39 PM
Clear Ballistics Gel Testing OLD WEST Revolvers and Rifles Savvy Jack The Lounge 10 08-09-2014 12:01 PM
Terminal Ballistics Testing KSCowboy Concealed Carry & Self Defense 15 10-13-2011 01:53 PM
Ballistics for .327 Federal Magnum Cristiano S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present 4 04-09-2009 03:00 AM

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
smith-wessonforum.com tested by Norton Internet Security smith-wessonforum.com tested by McAfee Internet Security

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:45 PM.


S-W Forum, LLC 2000-2015
Smith-WessonForum.com is not affiliated with Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC)