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S&W Revolvers: 1961 to 1980 3-Screw PINNED Barrel SWING-OUT Cylinder Hand Ejectors WITH Model Numbers


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  #151  
Old 03-18-2008, 02:10 PM
lefty lar lefty lar is offline
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520, as you stated that is what the S&W person said. Our 12 probably was just torqued too much when it was assembled. It cracked right beneath where the bottom of the barrel goes into the frame. Just like cars. One person can get a lemon from the factory & another guy can get a jewel. I think it could be that monday thing.

I guess everyone has to decide for themselves what they want to put thru their gun & what can happen or not. Osprey's tests sure prove that.

Lefty Lar
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  #152  
Old 03-18-2008, 02:16 PM
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I thank the gentleman!
It's been an interesting read throughout....
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  #153  
Old 03-19-2008, 09:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaxonPig View Post
If the 158/1140 load through an alloy J frame didn't cause any harm how could the 125/925 in a K frame possibly do damage?
Not much info there. How do you know it did not cause any harm? How many rounds, etc.? Just curious...





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I would have absolutely ZERO concern about shooting +P through ANY Colt or S&W made after 1930
Is this not a narrowing of your previous opinion, which IIRC was pre-war instead of after 1930?
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  #154  
Old 03-19-2008, 06:06 PM
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NOTICE!

Probably some time this weekend, I'm going to stop "floating" this topic. With that, this topic will start working its way down the forum and eventually will disappear. For these reasons, I wanted to post this reminder that if you want any of the information in this topic, you might want to copy and paste it into some format that you personally control and protect.</span>

Since I "drafted" all of my updates (at least in The Log section on page 1), I have copy of The Test (data) in a MSWord doc, but NOT the entire content of this 12 page (currently) topic.

Be advised.... Osprey
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  #155  
Old 03-20-2008, 03:50 PM
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Osprey-Good job, it was a very interesting thread. I had a mdl. 37 3" at one time and got rid of it circa 1981 because I thought it too fragile. Should have had patience that the right info would come along.
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  #156  
Old 03-20-2008, 04:28 PM
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Oh, if you want to talk hot loads in alloy J-frames, there are some guys here who can talk. You know THE LOAD that got so much discussion when I mentioned it (from Speer # 8)? Well it turns out that a 158-grain bullet will do almost 1100 fps from a 1 7/8" alloy-framed J-frame .38 Special.

I know that at least one of our members has rocketed over 100 rounds of this through his alloy J-gun. Me, I haven't done so many - hand hurts too much and I've no real need for it. But those Js with their offset cylinder notches can take a hot load - and the Aluminum frames seem to hold up as well as Osprey's did.
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  #157  
Old 03-20-2008, 07:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erich View Post
Well it turns out that a 158-grain bullet will do almost 1100 fps from a 1 7/8" alloy-framed J-frame .38 Special.
..Was that with or without the barrel in tow?

Osprey
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  #158  
Old 03-20-2008, 08:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erich View Post
Well it turns out that a 158-grain bullet will do almost 1100 fps from a 1 7/8" alloy-framed J-frame .38 Special.
I believe it, but of course the velocity would not be affected by whether the gun had an alloy or steel frame. I got 901 avg. fps from a 1 7/8 inch M60 from 158 grain Winchester FACTORY loads, so there is no telling what you could push those reloads to.
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  #159  
Old 03-20-2008, 09:52 PM
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I was just making the point that the alloy Js appear to hold up decently to really hot loads.
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  #160  
Old 03-21-2008, 03:02 AM
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Sure been my experience. At least so far?
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  #161  
Old 03-21-2008, 06:30 AM
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Erich,

I understood your point with "The Load" through an Airweight J-frame; tough little guns! However, my new curiousity about "The Load" is this, what kind of velocities do you get with this load through 4, 6, even 8, inch guns of any weight?

Also, did that Speer #8 manual of magic spells have any recipes similar to "The Load," but using bullets heavier then 158?

... Osprey
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  #162  
Old 03-21-2008, 10:16 AM
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Sorry about the thread-drift, but it IS your thread to drift as you'd like.

Last question first: I haven't messed with them.

First question (THE LOAD):

(5950'> sea level, 58F)
1 7/8" tube: M 1086 fps/S 28.13/D 11.35
3": M 1185/S 44.68/S 19.02
4": 1230 fps/S 6.39/D 2.23 fps (!)
(same range, 48F)
24": 1454/S 13.46/D 6.00

(I haven't shot them over a chronograph out of my 6" 14-2 - sorry! )

Leaving aside the heat-generating question of whether shooting THE LOAD is advisable in .38 Spl revolvers (while it's worked for me, I can't say if it's safe in anyone else's guns - one must research it on his/her own, think for oneself and do what makes oneself comfortable - always remembering to be careful to follow safe reloading procedures and work up to any load), it does seem like a remarkably consistent loading - if someone wanted a low-stress-but-decently-powerful load for a .357 Magnum revolver, one could do very well with this one. (I'd note that many factory 158-gr .357 Magnum loadings produce more blast and less velocity than THE LOAD out of a given barrel length - for instance, the 3" tube threw a Magtech 158-gr bullet at 1115/36.33/13.78 on a slightly cooler 50 day and the same gun threw the 145-gr Mag STHP at 1167/42.93/17.97 that same day). But if you want top power out of a carbine, Lil' Gun seems to be the way to go (same bullet, M 2002 fps/S 19.52/D 8.66 - hard to beat them numbers, eh? ).

I only use Tennessee Valley Bullets hardcast 158-gr LSWCs with this . . . I've found that they seem to give me a bit more velocity than other cast bullets I've chrono'd over any given powder charge - and they're fairly cheap and made by a first-class guy and board member (nkjnut).
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  #163  
Old 03-21-2008, 12:25 PM
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Osprey,

First of I'd like to thank you for going through this experiment. Impressive example of persistence in search of truth

Expanding on Erich's response RE: manual of magic spell's, the Speer #8 manual: I find it's exciting read. Note that there were (at least) 2 different printings of this manual – in 1970 and 1971; both are hosted on Paul's site. Some of the SR4756 loads are slightly different between the 2 printings (by 0.5 – 1 gr.) but THE LOAD is not changed.

THE LOAD is a starting charge of SR4756 for 158 gr. lead bullet intended (at the time of printing ) for small frame revolvers. As Erich mentioned several people shot it in old and modern aluminum frame .38 spl revolvers with no ill effects on the guns. I tried jacketed equivalent in 642 and reported it in Reloading section of this forum. Several people myself included tried some of the higher SR4756 charges from Speer #8 in various revolvers from 640 and SP101 (chambered for 357mag) and up to K, L and N frames. Results were reported in this and other forums. Paul5388 published some very impressive velocities for longer barrel revolvers which seem to leave commonly used slow powders in the dust.

Mike
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  #164  
Old 03-21-2008, 12:30 PM
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Been lurking here on this thread for ages. Thanks, Osprey. Kind of made me wish I'd kept my M12, but when I want to put +P through a 6-shot Al alloy gun (which I do, frequently) I have a few Colt Agents and Cobras that get that duty. FWIW, I've never seen one of them damaged by such use, either, but I've never put anywhere near the number of rounds through one that you shot here. I do have a Cobra that has digested upwards of 300 rounds of +P, though, with no visible ill effect. Thanks again; good work!
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  #165  
Old 03-21-2008, 04:32 PM
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When preparing an engine block for a rebuild, it is possible to have it Magnefluxed to look for microscopic defects/cracks. Would it be possible to do this for a gun? The only problem I can see would be that some guns are made of materials that are not magnetic (i.e., certain alloy frames such as the test gun in question).
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  #166  
Old 03-21-2008, 05:24 PM
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Funny you should mention this: My friend who shot more than 100 rounds of THE LOAD through his J-frame had the gun Magnafluxed afterward. (Apparently this is possible, I guess the stuff itself being magnetic is the operative fact. ) No cracks anywhere.
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  #167  
Old 03-21-2008, 06:07 PM
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stiab- I believe I have always cited the 1930 date as my personal comfort zone. Perhaps very early on I agreed with the post-1945 date but I quickly figured that was arbitrary. The last gun made before the war is no weaker than the first one made after the war. Same with the model number criterion. The last gun W/O a model number is just as strong as the first one made with one stamped on it.
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  #168  
Old 03-21-2008, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaxonPig View Post
stiab- I believe I have always cited the 1930 date as my personal comfort zone.
Saxon, in this thread back in November it sounded like 1899 was your comfort zone.
Nov thread

On Nov 7 2007 Doug.38PR posted...
"SaxonPig your responses on this subject always surprise me. You are one of the few people on all these boards that confidently claim that .38+P and even hotter loads are harmless in prewar Colt and S&W .38 guns...no matter how many you put through."

On Nov 8 2007 Saxon Pig replied...
"Doug- Starting in 1899 S&W designed the K frame 38 Special revolver to handle 21,500 PSI loads. Current factory +P ammo is loaded to 18,5000 PSI. So why should I worry about shooting this ammo in guns designed to safely handle 3,000 MORE pounds of pressure?"
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  #169  
Old 03-24-2008, 06:45 AM
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Folks,

I want thank you all for your kind words of encouragement throughout this test and your contributions. IMO, it was beneficial to let this topic "expand" (as opposed to "drift") into related topics such as reloads, overtightened barrels, and the history of +P. All these things added excellent content to the specific topic and test.

I'm going to "unfloat" this topic now and let it drift off into cyberspace history along with some of my other projects:

* Titanium cylinder erosion.
* Plastic Guide Rods in Beretta 92 Pistols.
* SA vs DA accuracy.
* ILIF (I guess this is still on going).

In the future, I've got another SA vs. DA test in mind and, if ammo weren't so expensive, I would be trying to KaBoom a 40-caliber Glock using a more scientific testing technique then the current Internet reports are offerring.

Good luck to all you M12 owners.

... Osprey
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  #170  
Old 03-24-2008, 01:00 PM
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Osprey, Thanks much for your informative efforts, and thanks also to the others, whose comments have contributed to my fuller understanding of this issue. Now, we can all make more informed decisions about what we want to shoot in our Airweight - and steel S&W's. Regards, Jerry
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  #171  
Old 03-28-2008, 05:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Osprey View Post
Folks,

I want thank you all for your kind words of encouragement throughout this test and your contributions. IMO, it was beneficial to let this topic "expand" (as opposed to "drift") into related topics such as reloads, overtightened barrels, and the history of +P. All these things added excellent content to the specific topic and test.

I'm going to "unfloat" this topic now and let it drift off into cyberspace history along with some of my other projects:

* Titanium cylinder erosion.
* Plastic Guide Rods in Beretta 92 Pistols.
* SA vs DA accuracy.
* ILIF (I guess this is still on going).

In the future, I've got another SA vs. DA test in mind and, if ammo weren't so expensive, I would be trying to KaBoom a 40-caliber Glock using a more scientific testing technique then the current Internet reports are offerring.

Good luck to all you M12 owners.

... Osprey
OSPREY...

Where would you post your Plastic Guide Rods in Beretta 92 Pistols test?

I mean this is a S&W Forum...and Im not to familiar with your investigation.

Excuse my English...still learning it.

Thanks.
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  #172  
Old 03-28-2008, 05:15 PM
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Good test, I learned something from this. Thank you.
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  #173  
Old 03-29-2008, 10:55 AM
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I would suggest this test never stop. It would be an easy task to keep updating the log every time you fire this particular M12. I for one would love to see just how many rounds that M12 can take.

Thanks.
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  #174  
Old 03-29-2008, 04:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fjmaring View Post
OSPREY...

Where would you post your Plastic Guide Rods in Beretta 92 Pistols test?
fjmaring

I documented that test over on the Beretta Forum. At one point, I converted - if needed - all four of my Beretta 92 series pistols to Plastic Guide Rods (PGR) to see if there was any merit to all the whining about PGRs. I was posting quarterly round count reports and a running tally (similar to what I did here with the M12). Eventually, the whining stopped and I stopped updating topic; sold one of the test guns (the Vertec), and pretty much stopped shooting two of the remaining three guns. However, I have put quite a few rounds through the 92G that I had included in the test. If you'd like, email me and I'll send you the current up to date round count on the PGR in the 92G.

Cheers,

... Osprey pacenote@aol.com

ADDENDUM

Wow, I couldn't believe it...I went over to the Beretta Forum and actually found the link to the PGR topic. It hasn't been updated since Dec 2005. Here you go:

http://www.berettaforum.net/vb/showthread.php?t=5648

Again, I have more current data then is in this topic...
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Old 03-29-2008, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
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I would suggest this test never stop. It would be an easy task to keep updating the log every time you fire this particular M12. I for one would love to see just how many rounds that M12 can take.

Thanks.
TN,

At one point, prior to the test, consideration was given to shooting the gun until failure, but the community consensus seemed to favor setting a finite number of +P rounds fired (we agreed to 1,000). Most involved in the discussion thought it silly to deliberately try to destroy a perfectly good M12. With this number, we at least got "closure" on this test even though I believe the debate about using +P in a model 12 will rage on forever.

Again, I have no intention of shooting +Ps in any of my M12s unless a situation forced me to. If so forced, I'm happy to say that this test has made me comfortable with the idea that in a pinch, shooting +Ps in an M12 will be okay.

... Osprey
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Old 07-09-2008, 12:47 PM
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BTT
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  #177  
Old 10-28-2008, 12:11 PM
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It's been a while since this was a BTT...

So here it is.

I got to wondering if "the test" was ever finished...

I should have paid more attention.
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  #178  
Old 10-28-2008, 04:31 PM
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I think I would rather fire heavy +P's out of my M36 (which I won't since I really like the gun) then attempt this one. I wish I had taken pics of what the NYS Department of Corrections did to two M37 Smiths with +P .38 Special. Wasn't pretty. One frame cracked, and the other had the cylinder jammed against the recoil shield.
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Old 08-13-2011, 11:09 PM
Don Dineen Don Dineen is offline
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I know this is long after you made your post on the M12 with +P ammo. I just bought a 4" SQ. butt in NIB condition. Curious about it, I wrote to S&W and they said NO +P. My revolver is D657XXX so I assume it is '73-'74 based on your sample. I located a M12-4" ROUND BUTT, this afternoon. It is the first one I have seen. Why it calls to me I can only guess, but it feels very good in the hand.
It is too bad that the alloys now in use were not used in the M12 series. I like the +P ammo.
There seems to be many NIB condition M12 revolvers available now. Why, I can only speculate, but a local shop has several.
Now the issue is should I even use this fine condition gun or collect it. I don't like collecting, I like using.
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Old 08-13-2011, 11:18 PM
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I have to question why bother to try +P since it doesn't do all that much more then a good standard velocity HP. Now I have to admit I like +P for my M642. My favorite load seems to have been pulled from production. I have hoarded Federal Nyclad 158 gr. LHP in both std. and +P, but I am running out. Has anyone found a new in 2011, that works at standard pressures? After getting this one model, I am looking at variants, for no better reason then they apeal to me.
Thanks, Don
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  #181  
Old 08-14-2011, 02:28 PM
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Lawyers tell S&W to say no to +P. It's a load of BS. Factory +P (125@925) is barely a nice plinking load. Standard 38 Special ammo (158@730) has become little more than a BB gun.

The original 38 Special load (158@870) was deemed safe in any S&W from 1899 onward. Why the change in policy? Lawsuits by owners of crappy guns that blew up. Scared all the gun companies and ammo companies into reducing loads and voided warranties with anything other than wimpy, weak-kneed, watered-down standard loads.
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  #182  
Old 08-14-2011, 03:58 PM
Jim NNN Jim NNN is offline
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I'm not sure I understand the logic behind the original poster's test when there are countless affordable used S&W's out there that can be used with +p ammo (per manufacturer's recommendations.)

If Ford tells me not to use a certain type of Goodyear tire on their Explorer, why am I going to try and prove them wrong?

Oh well, I saw a 2 inch Model 12 a few weeks ago that I would've loved to have, regardless if it can shoot +p or not.

Nothing like resurrecting a thread that's been dead 3 years!
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  #183  
Old 08-14-2011, 05:28 PM
scooter123 scooter123 is offline
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I think the OP was trying to prove that S&W was being a bit over conservative concerning the use of +P ammo in the model 12. If you look at the numbers for standard and +P variants of 38 spl. it's apparent that 38 +P really isn't that much more powerful than the standard pressure.

He's also confirmed my personal choice of never purchasing any of the aluminum or scandium framed framed revolvers. While they may be easier to carry they do beat you up in an extended range session, even when shooting a rather mild caliber.

Finally, he's confirmed that the Speer Lawman is the really really GOOD stuff. One range I shoot at has this fully stocked in 9mm and 40 caliber and while a bit pricey it's proven to be the most accurate ammo I've used in my 40 calibers. Too bad that can't get any of the 38 spl. in because I'd love to get more, shot off my last 2 boxes of the 125 gn. 38 spl. doing some accuracy testing and the results were splendid. IMO Speer should dump the Blazer and start marketing the Lawman outside of the LE channel, because it's a really first class ammo.
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  #184  
Old 08-15-2011, 12:11 AM
Don Dineen Don Dineen is offline
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Moondawg and others, My thing with the M12 is it is a nice looking and feeling packing piece. I rarely shoot my everyday use guns, but practice, and recently started IDPA, with an all steel M19-4". It is the first K-frame alloy frame gun I ever bought. I carried many J-frame guns. I traded a M60-2.125"-.357 for this M12. The M60 was too heavy for a pocket gun and if I have to wear a holster, I am going to carry a bigger gun.
Yes, I know I should be practicing more with the carry gun - but I found I can still shoot pretty good with any S&W that fits the hand. After decades of Glock use I fell in love with revolver shooting, all over again. The round butt model I found at an area store is nice and I do have this thing about having one for show and one for go.
I enjoyed finding this old thread. Thanks for your input.
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  #185  
Old 08-15-2011, 01:22 PM
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Don, do what you want with your gun. My discussions on +P are motivated by this wild, erroneous notion (that you apparently share) that +P is somehow harmful to a quality made gun. There is no need to avoid +P as it's a very mild load that is 3,000 PSI below industry standards for the caliber. You don't to look for a gun "approved for +P" since EVERY 38 Special revolver is approved for +P.
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  #186  
Old 08-15-2011, 03:41 PM
Don Dineen Don Dineen is offline
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Saxon, I will most likely use my last box of Federal 158 gr. +P Nyclad. I use it in several guns now. It was a good load and it is too bad Federal stopped making it. The M12 I just bought is a very fine carry gun. As the weather cools I can wear a coat, which means I add a belt gun to the hardware. I always have a M642 where I carried it for back up for so many decades. After I retired I was attacked by a Rhodesian Ridgeback, as we practiced so often, I put my left hand into its mouth, grabbed it jaw and reached for my Glock. Opps, it wasn't there anymore.
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  #187  
Old 08-16-2011, 12:41 AM
gagunner 2 gagunner 2 is offline
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Don,sent you PM
gagunner 2
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  #188  
Old 08-16-2011, 03:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOONDAWG View Post
SP's test just proved...
Just to keep the record straight, it was former moderator Osprey that conducted the test.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scooter123 View Post
While they may be easier to carry they do beat you up in an extended range session, even when shooting a rather mild caliber.
No truer words have been spoken in this entire thread. I have owned three Model 12's, am down to one now. At the range with 20 or more rounds of standard pressure ammo the web of your hand starts to really sting, and with +P there is an obvious different that is even more uncomfortable.

One reason for this is that with the M12 there are not many grip options until you get to the 12-4. Even RB airweight J frames have better availabe shooting grips (ex. Uncle Mike's combats, Pachmeyr and Hogue rubbers, etc.) than the M12's wood and metal.
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  #189  
Old 08-16-2011, 07:57 AM
ImprovedModel56Fan ImprovedModel56Fan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stiab View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by scooter123
While they may be easier to carry they do beat you up in an extended range session, even when shooting a rather mild caliber.
No truer words have been spoken in this entire thread. I have owned three Model 12's, am down to one now. At the range with 20 or more rounds of standard pressure ammo the web of your hand starts to really sting, and with +P there is an obvious different that is even more uncomfortable.

One reason for this is that with the M12 there are not many grip options until you get to the 12-4. Even RB airweight J frames have better availabe shooting grips (ex. Uncle Mike's combats, Pachmeyr and Hogue rubbers, etc.) than the M12's wood and metal.
While this is undoubtedly true for some, for others it is not. Myself, I find a RB Model 12 with stock magnas and a Tyler to be very comfortable with standard ammo, and acceptable with 158 gr +P. The SB Model 12 equipped the same way is almost as comfortable, but not quite as fast to get my hand around. This business of fitting grips to the hand is very individual, and sometimes a bit tricky, which is why what stiab says about grip availability is so important. BTW, the 12-4, made from 1984 to 1986, uses standard K-frame grips.

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  #190  
Old 08-16-2011, 10:36 AM
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That's an old thread revisited that I haven't seen in a while.

I used to carry a 12-3 2" RB. I got it used, it had belonged to a LEO who used it as his BUG before I got it. I don't know if he was the original owner. I paid 350 for it.

I used it as a pocket gun for a while. Made my own holster out of Cheezit boxes and tape. Worked great. Some rubberbands and tape helped with the grips, though I think that Badger can offer custom grips?

Anyway, on a whim I traded it for a 3" 31-1 in .32 S&W long here on the forum, still have that little .32. There was nothing wrong with it and it was a handy revolver. I wish they made a modern version of it.

I didn't worry about using +P ammo in it. I liked, at the time, the Remington 158gr +P LHP rendition of the old FBI load.

Compared to the 337 that I once had, the 12-3 snub seemed tame in its handling.
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  #191  
Old 08-25-2011, 04:39 PM
Osprey Osprey is offline
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Smile ...and the debate continues.

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Old 05-28-2017, 10:03 AM
dpast32 dpast32 is offline
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OK, I guess I'll add my .02 cents worth. I have always loved 'Airweight' revolvers, & have ( & still do ) owned many of them. ( M12's, 642's, Colt Agent's & Cobra's, a couple of 4", but most were 2" Bbl. ) ALL of them WILL handle a LIMITED diet of +P ammunition, as all were proofed by their respective mfgr's prior to leaving the factory. With mine, I'll sight in with @ 12 rds to see where it shoots, & if the group is acceptable, I'll consider it adequate for close in, 7 yard line work. However, most of the mfgr's continue to tell us that the older, pre-improved guns should not be used with +P. This is a pure legal liability stance, to cover themselves in the event of any related legal action. Only Colt will OK limited use of +P in their alloy D frames. Their manual instructs that any ally revolver using a diet of +P should be returned to the factory every 2,000 rds for inspection. To me, that's a reasonable situation. As with anything in life, thete's always a price to pay, right ? If I don't choose to go the +P route, there are other options. Buffalo Bore offers I believe 3 decent NON +P loads in .38 Spl. Personally, I like their 148 gr. Full W/C, or their 158 LWC-HP ? ( IIRC, it's not an HP like it's +P cousin. ) Other 'big' mfgr's all offer NON +P loads, some better, some worse. And, when choosing a NON + P load, remember that's it's accuracy that wins the fight. Power does contribute it's share to the overall equation, but you need to put them into where they can do the job & that's in the accuracy dept. When I 1st began carrying, it was in the old pre-
hi-cap automatics era. Also, there were very limited choices available in +P loadings. Realizing all these factors, I figured that even though biggerthan a snub, for all around off duty use I chose a 4" Bbl Rd Butt Model 12. Boy, how I wish I never, ever sold it off ! Now, if S&W would only do a limited run of them in both 3" & 4" versions, put me down for 2 please. Oh, BTW; I know this is an S&W Forum, but I feel I should mention this anyway. If anyone's looking for a small, but very efficient .38 Spl.+P revolver so they retirebtheir cherished M-12, you might wish to check out Ruger's recent polymer, 3" bbl'd, adj. sight, @ 16 oz Model SP-101. ( IIRC, it's called the SXP or XP ? ) To me at least, it makes a great & very useful +P rated revolver for all around use. THANKS Guys, & sorry again for the long winded post.

Regards, dpast32

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