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  #101  
Old 04-29-2020, 01:13 PM
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Just skimmed through it and read enough to know the guy talks a big story but is one that probably is not much of a do'er. Anyone that carries a J-frame and does not shoot it on a regular basis, might agree with him. While I have never seen a 38 gunshot wound in person, I do know that I would not want to get hit with one! When even my lite-weight 148HBWC loads ding and swing an 8" circle of 3/8" steel at 20-50 yards, I know I would not want to be standing on the wrong side.

I think I will stick to reading Massad Ayoob and his years of actual field experience.
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  #102  
Old 04-29-2020, 01:40 PM
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I never looked forward to practicing with my J frame .38. Was never able to shoot it well and hated the recoil. Consequently I sold it and got a Ruger Compact 9mm. It has reasonable power, 10+1 and much easier to shoot well. Although I find the J's cool looking, they just don't work for me.
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  #103  
Old 04-29-2020, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Old cop View Post
Hereís what I know: My .38 saved me three times during my career, and I had to reload under fire during one fight. Would I have done better w/an auto loader, who knows. Modern semi autos make sense for LE & the military, but those who no longer go in harmĎs way should carry what works best for them.
An attack is an attack, LEO or ccw. Limiting ones self seems foolish in either case. I am sure in the events you speak of your attacker was armed sim to you, not out gunning you with a high cap pistol??
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Old 04-29-2020, 03:34 PM
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Just skimmed through it and read enough to know the guy talks a big story but is one that probably is not much of a do'er. Anyone that carries a J-frame and does not shoot it on a regular basis, might agree with him. While I have never seen a 38 gunshot wound in person, I do know that I would not want to get hit with one! When even my lite-weight 148HBWC loads ding and swing an 8" circle of 3/8" steel at 20-50 yards, I know I would not want to be standing on the wrong side.

I think I will stick to reading Massad Ayoob and his years of actual field experience.
I think too may conflict what they can shoot under ideal conditions on a flat range with what they can do in a dynamic event. Can you hit that 8" plate @ say 10y in 1.5sec from a holster, even from low ready? I would bet you a new J-frame most that carry theirs can not. If you can, that is great, but still doesn't remove the potential failure rate of any caliber in a fight.
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  #105  
Old 04-29-2020, 03:45 PM
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It all depends on the scenario and the skill of the user. In the, bad guy in your face or on top of you scenario, the snub revolver is about perfect.

In the shootout with an AR15 carrying assailant at 50 yards, not so much.

I know I'm taking it to extremes, but as a middle aged civilian getting into my more feeble years, it's much more likely I be faced with someone trying to mug me than shooting it out with someone at longer range.

Up close and personal, in awkward firing positions, the simple .38 snubnose, still has a lot to offer.
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  #106  
Old 04-29-2020, 04:56 PM
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It is safe to say I am extremely jealous of the opportunity for that first hand wisdom. I hope you are paying it forward.
To the very best of my abilities as a FTS Instructor for 20 years.
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  #107  
Old 04-29-2020, 07:21 PM
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I suspect this guy flipped a coin. Heads: .38s suck. Tails: .38s are great.

This time it was heads. Next time tails.
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  #108  
Old 04-29-2020, 07:36 PM
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I always say that snubbies are guns for expert shooters to carry.

My friend, a novice to firearms, had a nice 1980s vintage S&W snubbie, that he had never fired. I took him to the range, gave him earplugs and instructions on using them, set up a target at 10 feet, gave him ammo, and had him shoot at a 10" target. He got exactly one round on target (nowhere near the X ring); the rest entirely missed the 10" target.

My friend said "There is something wrong with this gun," so I reloaded it and fired a single round right through the X ring.

My friend sold the snubbie and bought a 9 mm Glock. It was the right move for him.

My point? Snubbies are guns for expert shooters, experienced and accurate at shooting a snubbie, to carry.
I tried the S&W j frame thing (642 )and was not a good fit for me for same reasons. I got a sub compact double stack 9mm same size as a j frame and never looked back. I would never bash a j frame revolver. It is a gun and it can be deadly, just alittle harder to shoot than a Glock, I know an army sniper who carries a 38.......to each his own
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  #109  
Old 04-29-2020, 08:45 PM
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As mentioned in some of the previous posts, muscle memory plays a big part in shooting accuracy. I've been a revolver shooter all my life, Single action Rugers, and K & N frame Smiths, from 22's to .44spl.
J frames, are so-so for me, I have to change the grips on them.

I have tried countless 9mm with no success. Just purchased a Springfield Hellcat, first outing was very bad, will keep trying

For me, my muscle memory with a K frame beats any other.

Another comment from a previous post that I have issue with is
"Then, there's the folks who can't seem to help but think they need (and will have time) to thumb-cock a traditional revolver into single action ... at 3yds ... for each shot."

I'd much rather shoot 6 rounds in 10 seconds and keep on target than wing around in double action. There comes that muscle memory again!
Thumbing the hammer is automatic for me. And yes, I can do it one-handed, just not quite as fast.

Guess it's just hard for a stubborn old Taurus gal to learn new tricks!
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  #110  
Old 04-29-2020, 09:37 PM
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An attack is an attack, LEO or ccw. Limiting ones self seems foolish in either case. I am sure in the events you speak of your attacker was armed sim to you, not out gunning you with a high cap pistol??
Yup, 1974 when everyone carried a revolver. I was a detective carrying my issued Colt DS. Semi autos were not authorized by my agency and if a hi-cap model was available then I wasnít aware of it.
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  #111  
Old 04-29-2020, 10:01 PM
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Over the past year and a half I have experienced surgical corrections of a shoulder problem, elbow, wrist, and cataracts. My usual handgun preference (full-size 1911-type .45ACP) was difficult to the point of being unreliable for the purpose.

In my gun safe there was a nice 40-year old Smith & Wesson Model 64 round-butt 2" .38 Special revolver, police trade-in from the local department. Having carried a double-action revolver for years as a working cop, this was an easy choice for me. Plenty of muscle memory and retained skills based on years of training.

The gentleman's article appears typical of those generated by folks having a pre-conceived conclusion that they wish to validate.

I will never feel unarmed, or even severely handicapped, with a good .38 Special revolver at my side. If my physical abilities are restored in the future I may choose to return to the realm of larger calibers and semi-auto pistols, but for the time being I am very comfortable and confident with what I have.
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  #112  
Old 04-30-2020, 03:59 PM
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Default Writing 'review' articles for gun magazines and site....

....has to be the easiest to come up with.

"The .40 is the gun you need?"

" Is the .40 the best caliber for defense?"

"Comparing the .40 to the 9mm"

"Comparing the .40 to the 10mm"

"Comparing the .40 to the .45 caliber. Which is best"

"Why not .40 caliber"

".40 caliber, the TACTICAL choice."

"The best .40 caliber handguns"

I can crank out titles to sell to different guns magazines, depending on that they put out last month. Then I can work on the negatives:

"The .40 caliber is OBSOLETE".

"Surpising facts why .40 caliber isn't the best defense gun"

"Why .40 caliber was NOT selected for the military."

"Why did the police abandon the .40?"

And so on.

And after all that I can pick a rifle caliber.

"The .30-40 Krag, the forgotten gem!

And it goes on and on and on. It's to convince people that there is a specail cartridge/gun that works magic for YOU if you will just read the articles and go buy something.
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  #113  
Old 05-01-2020, 08:31 AM
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"The .30-40 Krag, the forgotten gem!



A person could do a whole lot worse.

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Old 05-01-2020, 08:59 AM
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Default He missed 5 shots

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5 bangs, some clicks, no reload. You die.

Don't fool around. Get a P365.
You missed with 5 shots. Will you hit with 6-10? Where did the first 5 go?
Practice is a thing
Hail of bullets! Sometimes hitting bystanders is a thing.
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  #115  
Old 05-01-2020, 11:47 AM
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Many people who buy guns arenít interested in becoming a shooter or a gun enthusiast. They just want something to keep around just in case. I think a snub revolver can be a logical choice in such cases. Not that itís perfect(nothing is), but just that it might be the best compromise when all things are considered.

My wife and mother both own and occasionally carry J-frames. They took classes to get their carry permit, but neither like talking about guns, maintaining their guns, carrying guns(especially heavier ones)or shooting and wonít practice much or at all. They realize the odds of needing a gun is extremely low. Too low to spend much time and effort on something they donít enjoy. They donít entertain fantasies of being involved in shootouts with multiple armed robbers and would do anything in their power to avoid armed conflict. Avoid, avoid, avoid until backed into a corner where lethal force is the only and last resort. They are concerned about the mugger or rapist that attacks from arms length. And I imagine they would hesitate to shoot. A J-frame is simple, safe, easy to maintain, is relatively easy to carry, offers excellent weapon retention and excels at contact distance shooting. Reloads can be comparatively slow and difficult, but I donít see that being much of an issue since it apparently virtually never happens in civilian self-defense shootings.

Of course there are possible scenarios where their skills and choice of weapon could prove inadequate, but thatís true in any case.

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Old 05-01-2020, 12:08 PM
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...just shot 100 rds this morning with my J frame 642. I’m very accurate with it since I shoot at least 200 rounds of quality practice with it monthly. My standard load is a 148 gr DEWC over 3.5 grs of Bullseye.

Massad Ayoob considered a 38 Spl snub a very viable choice...I’ve been shooting J frames enjoyably since the late 1970s and feel very confident with its inherent accuracy.

Contemporary critics of the 38 Spl are misleading many...high capacity semi autos, both plastic and steel, are all they know...and that’s ok too
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  #117  
Old 05-01-2020, 02:19 PM
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Massad Ayoob considered a 38 Spl snub a very viable choice.
Ayoob did an article a while back where he described an "experiment" in which he spent some time traveling around the country carrying a pair of J-frames. IIRC, even though he would've preferred one of his .45s, he felt the snubs were adequate. I've actually spent a lot of time trying to find a copy of that article, but no luck.
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Old 05-01-2020, 02:48 PM
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Ayoob did an article a while back where he described an "experiment" in which he spent some time traveling around the country carrying a pair of J-frames. IIRC, even though he would've preferred one of his .45s, he felt the snubs were adequate. I've actually spent a lot of time trying to find a copy of that article, but no luck.
I remember it. I believe it used to be on the Snubnose files.
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  #119  
Old 05-01-2020, 02:52 PM
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I remember it. I believe it used to be on the Snubnose files.
Thanks. I'll go check it out when I get a chance.
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Old 05-01-2020, 03:09 PM
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Thanks. I'll go check it out when I get a chance.
I think the article was titled ďis a .38 snub enough?Ē Itís from 2000, so itís 20 years old now. All the links I found for it are dead.
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  #121  
Old 05-01-2020, 03:16 PM
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Ayoob did an article a while back where he described an "experiment" in which he spent some time traveling around the country carrying a pair of J-frames. IIRC, even though he would've preferred one of his .45s, he felt the snubs were adequate. I've actually spent a lot of time trying to find a copy of that article, but no luck.

I read that article a while back as well.


I have stated time and time again:

Rule #1 is THE most important: have a gun


I am too active and too tired of dressing around big guns 24-7. It is so easy to grab the J and go. Lightweight, simple, easy to carry, and not such a PIA in regards to comfort, weight, and bulk in my day to day wearing shorts, board shorts, flip flops, and t-shirts pretty much 8 months out of the year.



SSS


Avoid:

Stupid People
Stupid Places
Stupid Times


and your life will be smooth sailing and you don't have to worry about kitting up like you are about to go into a dark building after a suspect or fight world war 3


Active shooter and all you have is a snub? Get you and your loved ones out of there or shelter in place with a good ambush spot where you can take a head shot before they see you. If you didn't train for that that's on you. If it is your time, it's your time. You have more of a chance dying in traffic.



My life: Train and have fun doing it, buy quality gear and take care of your gear, don't ever buy Chinese products, carry light, enjoy life.... there is a time and place to carry bigger guns.... but 90% of the time:



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Old 05-01-2020, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
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I think the article was titled ďis a .38 snub enough?Ē Itís from 2000, so itís 20 years old now. All the links I found for it are dead.



Wayback machine rules:


American Handgunner: Is A .38 Snub Enough
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Old 05-01-2020, 03:41 PM
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Simply answered, Yes I would and yes I do!. With two speed loaders I might add!
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Old 05-01-2020, 03:46 PM
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Awesome. Thanks!
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Old 05-01-2020, 04:07 PM
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Thanks a bunch! I was just about to go search for it.

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Old 05-01-2020, 04:09 PM
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Funny, as I just now realized that, despite having a pair of 642s for a few years now, I've yet to carry both. It's usually been either one 642 by itself or as a BUG to my PX4 Compact. I think I'm going to do that on my next outing.
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Old 05-01-2020, 04:27 PM
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Mas Ayoob usually carries a service pistol and a snub. That’s about the best combination to cover as many potential scenarios as possible. I’m just not willing to do it myself. I might be willing to carry a pair of air-weights on occasion.
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Old 05-01-2020, 04:52 PM
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Thanks Mr. Peabody!
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Old 05-01-2020, 04:57 PM
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Thanks Mr. Peabody!



Anytime Sherman
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Old 05-01-2020, 09:00 PM
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Carry my preferred gun or youíre an idiot. Now let me validate my decisions by trying to make yours sound dumb.
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Old 05-01-2020, 10:36 PM
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Simply answered, Yes I would and yes I do!. With two speed loaders I might add!
Ah, but who can reload with speedloaders in a short-range firefight? In an active shooter situation? When the Gang of Three is jacking you?

Has anybody ever done it? That's the reason for the New York reload.

The serious street survivors carry semi autos and spare mags. If you must, absolutely must, rely on old tech, due, perhaps, to a medical issue, carry two of those snubbies and do the New York reload.

Otherwise, trade 'em in on a P365 and a spare 15 round magazine.
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Old 05-01-2020, 11:36 PM
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Boosheet. I've had back & hip problems lately & EDC a Tyler T-Grip equipped S&W Model 12-2 loaded with Winchester "Defend" 130 grain BHPs in an OWB holster. I carry 2 speedloaders and/or 2 speedstrips. I can shoot MOBG double action at 25 yards; at close range (~7 yards) I can fire accurately faster than a semiautomatic can cycle.

My wife's gun is a 4 inch S&W Model 681 w/Crimson Trace grips loaded with Remington 125 grain SJHP .38 Special +P. She killed 2 coyotes 25-35 yards behind the house (1 running). You couldn't give her a semiautomatic.

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Old 05-01-2020, 11:58 PM
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Default Whatever......

Wheelies have been planting people who needed killin for a long long time. Me thinks they'll continue doing that for a long time.

Learn your craft! Practice with your sidearm of choice. I've seen plenty of officers on my dept. (I'm now a full time range officer) really screw up with their semi's. It's up to the shooter to have their heads screwed on straight. It's also a personal decision to have the right attitude and get the right training.
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Old 05-02-2020, 12:09 AM
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Hell, carry an all steel 60, 649, Colt DS or new Cobra. They make dandy impact weapons too if needed.
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Old 05-02-2020, 12:33 AM
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5 bangs, some clicks, no reload. You die.



Don't fool around. Get a P365.
Six bangs. One or two Bravo Golfs down. Reloaded before anyone else figures out what happens. No fooling. I go home.

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Old 05-02-2020, 09:18 AM
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Boosheet. I've had back & hip problems lately & EDC a Tyler T-Grip equipped S&W Model 12-2 loaded with Winchester "Defend" 130 grain BHPs in an OWB holster. I carry 2 speedloaders and/or 2 speedstrips. I can shoot MOBG double action at 25 yards; at close range (~7 yards) I can fire accurately faster than a semiautomatic can cycle.

My wife's gun is a 4 inch S&W Model 681 w/Crimson Trace grips loaded with Remington 125 grain SJHP .38 Special +P. She killed 2 coyotes 25-35 yards behind the house (1 running). You couldn't give her a semiautomatic.

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You mean you personally can fire the revolver faster than you can the semiautomatic? The semi is cycling somewhere around a .14 split. Jerry Miculek is somewhere around a .2 split with a revolver. Bob Munden once out ran a 1911 with an SAA .15 to .11. Bump firing vs. Fanning. With a double action, you're eventually outrunning the trigger return spring.
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Old 05-02-2020, 09:24 AM
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Another YouTube muppet. Thereís a lot of good info out there, but you have to sift through the BS.
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Old 05-02-2020, 09:53 AM
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Iíve read through this thread w/interest b/c thereís no wrong or right choice. It comes down to what works best for you, everyoneís situation is unique. I had to use my .38 during my career so I know it works, but have transitioned to a .380 only b/c itís so much easier, at least for me. I also shoot my carry gun frequently so I know its limits, and mine. As a senior in my 70s my CCW is a get-off-me last ditch tool to save me or mine. Stay safe everyone.
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Old 05-03-2020, 01:14 AM
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Default Agreed. Have a gun

3 rules of a gunfight
1) have a gun
2)hit what you shoot at
3)hit with the biggest caliber you can carry
Added
I knife is a bad thing to bring to a gun fight
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Old 05-03-2020, 10:03 AM
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To much recoil. Ha Ha Ha. He should shoot one of my 325s. Accuracy? Really only need minute of bad guy at under 25 yds and that is stretching it. Decent accuracy and a fairly quick reloads are not that hard with some PRACTICE. Plus, try full moon clips, there buddy. If you have to use a carry piece to repel a group, your situational awareness probably sucks. A good 38 special round is NOT less powerful that the 9mm "wonder" cartridges.

Ya, the guy got paid and gots ome attention and in today's game that is called a "Win".

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Old 05-03-2020, 10:52 AM
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Agree with Lobogunleather. Model 64 with 2" barrel / round butt. Easily carried concealed with a good pancake holster. Carried one working from the 1970s - early 1990s when we went to Glock 23. Retired now. Either Model 64 or Shield 9mm now. If I had to choose only one it would be the M64!
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Old 05-03-2020, 01:26 PM
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My 3" j frame easily shoots tons better than my 3" striker fired toy. I must be having one of those senior moments.
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Old 05-03-2020, 02:26 PM
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Minute of bad guy sounds great when you are behind the keyboard. I want minute of bullet hole if I can get it. That way when I am cold and wet, tired and weary, bleeding and desperate I can get hits fast and dirty. It's nice to have about 1000 rounds of muscle memory too.
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Old 05-03-2020, 02:59 PM
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Minute of bad guy sounds great when you are behind the keyboard. I want minute of bullet hole if I can get it. That way when I am cold and wet, tired and weary, bleeding and desperate I can get hits fast and dirty. It's nice to have about 1000 rounds of muscle memory too.
Yeah, who doesn't? Practice is great, invaluable in fact, but the thing is silhouettes don't shoot back. Although it does teach muscle memory, which can't be replaced. That's a whole new challenge, and one which can't be replicated on the range. I don't know for sure but I think when you're fighting for your life, fear takes over and the impulse is to shoot fast and at close range, which most SD occur, a lot of training goes out the window.
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Old 05-03-2020, 08:08 PM
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Yeah, who doesn't? Practice is great, invaluable in fact, but the thing is silhouettes don't shoot back. Although it does teach muscle memory, which can't be replaced. That's a whole new challenge, and one which can't be replicated on the range. I don't know for sure but I think when you're fighting for your life, fear takes over and the impulse is to shoot fast and at close range, which most SD occur, a lot of training goes out the window.

Play airsoft. The only training where the targets shoot back.
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Old 05-03-2020, 09:15 PM
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Done Airsoft in many training sessions.

It does open your eyes to some idea of reality.

36 years as a LEO and my agency did a bunch of it with paintballs, simunitioms and airsoft. Super glad they did and exposed us to simulated realities of armed encounters.

One take away that will never leave
Me is how many times you get shot in the hands while you are shooting. We all focus on the threat and hit it with amazing accuracy and frequency.

Wear good padded gloves if you have the opportunity to do this kind of training.

And yes, I still feel perfectly comfortable carrying a revolver for my LEOSA carry. Usually a S&W 696 in. 44 Special. Funny how my BUG is now a Sig P365.

How the world changes.

Be prepared, Train as much as possible and always carry no matter what you choose to have on your person.

BTW - I still retain certifications to train concealed carry and retired LEOs. I do everything I can to encourage all of them to practice and train more and often.

Itís just the right thing to do.
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Old 05-03-2020, 09:16 PM
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Play airsoft. The only training where the targets shoot back.
Or paintball.
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Old 05-04-2020, 12:00 PM
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Yeah, who doesn't? Practice is great, invaluable in fact, but the thing is silhouettes don't shoot back. Although it does teach muscle memory, which can't be replaced. That's a whole new challenge, and one which can't be replicated on the range. I don't know for sure but I think when you're fighting for your life, fear takes over and the impulse is to shoot fast and at close range, which most SD occur, a lot of training goes out the window.
I have no idea what takes over, but I know that my subconsciousness loves the revolver. It comes up instinctively and my index is very good with it. I have no hesitation with a revolver. Look down and shoot down at reasonable distances.
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Old 05-04-2020, 01:23 PM
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The author is being hyperbolic with terms like 'never' and 'you're not good enough'.

That said, a 5 shot .38 was much more viable when most threats you were likely to encounter were similarly armed. That just isn't the case today. In the rare event that we will need to draw and shoot, the attacker(s) will more likely than ever before be armed with pistols holding 18 rounds or long-guns with 30 round mags. Attackers today are also motivated in ways that make them less likely to retreat when engaged by armed resistance. Most mass shooters expect to die at the scene, so they will stay and fight. That's the reality.

A 5 shot .38 makes sense against the 'typical' lone mugger armed with a knife, bludgeon, or Saturday night special who will runaway at the sight of a handgun.

In many cases, the .38 snub puts one at a distinct disadvantage in today's age of terrorists and mass shooters in mall and movie theaters, given that other more potent and similarly sized options are available.

This does not entail that we go armed with full sized long guns. A Glock 26 holds twice the payload with more potent rounds and a faster reload, and not much bigger package than a steel j frame. Even a single stack 9mm or .45 with a 3 inch barrel is much easier to shoot and reload quickly without sacrificing ease of carry.

Tools should evolve with the times we use them in.

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Old 05-04-2020, 02:07 PM
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The author is being hyperbolic with terms like 'never' and 'you're not good enough'.

That said, a 5 shot .38 was much more viable when most threats you were likely to encounter were similarly armed. That just isn't the case today. In the rare event that we will need to draw and shoot, the attacker(s) will more likely than ever before be armed with pistols holding 18 rounds or long-guns with 30 round mags. Attackers today are also motivated in ways that make them less likely to retreat when engaged by armed resistance. Most mass shooters expect to die at the scene, so they will stay and fight. That's the reality.

A 5 shot .38 makes sense against the 'typical' lone mugger armed with a knife, bludgeon, or Saturday night special who will runaway at the sight of a handgun.

In many cases, the .38 snub puts one at a distinct disadvantage in today's age of terrorists and mass shooters in mall and movie theaters.
American gets it right. He understands threat-evolution.

A J-Frame is marginal against even one attacker armed with anything. But now the threat can easily be (1) multiple armed gangstas; (2) one or more mass shooters who intend to die; (3) one or more terrorists who don't mind dying.

In these situations, you'll almost certainly have to expend lots of ammo for suppression, so you can get to cover, run away, or stop the shooter(s). This is suppression fire, not spray-and-pray.

It will be said: "Learn how to shoot, and you can make your shots count." There's much truth in this; but the people who say it, should consider testing themselves in a simulation where the targets are shooting back. Go play some airsoft or paintball against experienced players. You'll be humbled, you'll learn a lot, and you'll appreciate that a fire-fight with motivated opponents bears little resemblance to range-shooting or even formal "training."

When I got licensed, over 20 years ago, I carried a compact 1911 in .45. It carried 7 rounds. I had a pump shotgun for a car gun.

After 9/11, I thought there could be a possibility of domestic terrorists, so I started carrying a spare magazine. Now I had 13 shots. And I replaced the shotgun with a Mini-14. Two twenties.

Now I carry a 9mm with 18 rounds, and 17 more in the spare.

Police know this. When I was a kid, officers around town carried a .357 revolver. It was what they got in the academy, and most of them stuck with it their whole careers. Some, who wanted more "power," catted-up to the .44 magnum. A few carried the 1911 in .45 ACP. Once in a blue moon you'd see a Browning Hi-Power. Lawmen carried shotguns in their cars.

Now, only a few old court bailiffs carry a sixgun or 1911. Everybody else is required to carry a hi-cap pistol. The shotgun has been pushed aside by the AR-15.

When the threat changes, we have to change with the threat.



If a 5 shot revolver was ever viable, it sure ain't now. Reloading with a speed-loader under fire from two or three gangstas, or from an AK-wielding something, is not possible. Five bangs and a click, and you are now combat ineffective.

Last edited by Univibe; 05-04-2020 at 02:09 PM.
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