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S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present All NON-PINNED Barrels, the L-Frames, and the New Era Revolvers


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Old 09-14-2020, 06:42 PM
eazyrhino eazyrhino is offline
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Default 442 durability

Hi good folks been a long time since I last posted.
Like most of you I love my j frames but I was wondering your thoughts on the longevity of and durability the 442 bought mine new 5 or 6 years ago it's a dash-1 no lock. I've only shot it a few times (150 rnds)w/ buffalo bore 158 gr. wad cutters nice shooter and accurate. Wears rose wood checkered secret service grips and Galco Miami classic shoulder holster. No school like the old school.
Is it hand it down hairloom piece like my s&w 36 and 49?
Thanks Joe
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Old 09-14-2020, 06:50 PM
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It may loosen up quicker than your 36 or 49 if you shoot a lot of buffaloe bore or other very hot ammo, but if you shoot primarily standard pressure ammo, the 442 will be boringly solid and enjoyed by your grandchildren.
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Old 09-14-2020, 06:54 PM
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Maybe, maybe not.

Lots of factors. I've seen reports of people saying they've put thousands of rounds through their 442s/642s without a problem. So the possibility is certainly there.

But it might not. My first 642-1 went about 1500 rounds, about 1/3 of that +P, when the hammer stud broke. S&W replaced it under warranty. What I don't know is how common something like that is. I could've just had bad luck.

I would say use it as you normally would. Inspect it regularly. Clean, lube, and maintain it properly, and it should last a long time. Will it last long enough to be a heirloom gun? I can't say, and I'm not sure anybody can say with any real accuracy. Despite the strength improvements of the new airweight guns, overall I don't think they're as durable as all-steel guns, even if the gap between them has gotten smaller.

Just my opinion.
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Old 09-14-2020, 07:31 PM
eazyrhino eazyrhino is offline
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Thank you I don't use +p just standard pressure buf bore. And sorry I have a S&W mod.40 not a 49. 38 spl. has always been my favorite cal. and imho there's no better platform than a S&W revolver.
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Old 09-14-2020, 07:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eazyrhino View Post
Thank you I don't use +p just standard pressure buf bore.
This is just my opinion, so take it for what it's worth, but even standard pressure Buffalo Bore ammo is pretty hot. They can get +P velocities at what they say are standard pressures. Personally, I treat standard pressure Buffalo Bore loads the same as +P, and their +P loads as +P+.

But that's just me.
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Old 09-14-2020, 07:57 PM
FlyTyinFool FlyTyinFool is offline
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Minor (major?) thread hijack...

When I read "442" in the subject line, I thought this might be about an Oldsmobile 4-4-2

A buddy and I had one when we were young and stupid.

Pulled the motor apart and installed a cam, polished the valves, hogged out the intake manifold, headers, installed a B&M shift kit, blah, blah blah...

Burned up 2 sets of TA Radials on the rear and had a ton of fun!


Hijack over, you may return to your embroidery...
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Old 09-14-2020, 08:21 PM
eazyrhino eazyrhino is offline
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What would be a good standard pressure 38spl. load to use? I used to shoot fed. 158 gr. non +p nyclad (remember those?) long since gone. So I thought bb standard pressure non +P would be a good self defense load and for range and plinking just run of the mill wally world white box or federal. Any advice will be taken to heart.
Again thank you all.
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Old 09-14-2020, 08:44 PM
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Good old target 148 gr wc ammo is very pleasant to shoot in an airweight and is surprisingly good as a sd round.
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Old 09-14-2020, 09:26 PM
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I do most of my practice with some form of 130gr FMJ, currently using PMC 132gr FMJ. 148gr WC is also a good practice option. 158gr LRN or SWC is another good option for practice ammo, especially if you're using 158gr loads for carry/self defense use.

I will shoot +P occasionally. My carry load is Speer 135gr Short-Barrel Gold Dot +P, and I have some Speer Lawman 158gr TMJ +P for +P practice. I usually try to shoot a few cylinder-fulls of +P at the range. The 442-1 is rated for +P, so I wouldn't worry too much about running some +P through it on occasion. A steady diet, not so much.

If you can handle Buffalo Bore 158gr LSWCHP standard pressure loads, you should be able to handle +P from other makers, based on my experience. It's still a fine carry load and is my preferred version of the FBI load, and my second favorite choice, after the Speer SB-GDHP. I have a box or two that I like to keep on hand. If you like them, and can get enough to keep on hand, it's a good choice, in my opinion. Just find one of the standard pressure options I mentioned for most of your practice at the range.

For standard pressure defensive loads, my favorite is Federal 125gr Nyclad HP, but they're no longer made. I'm still hoarding the 2 or 3 boxes I have left. Hornady offers some standard pressure Critical Defense loads, but I'm not that familiar with them. I have seen people recommend them. Winchester Defend 130gr JHP looks promising. Can be hard to find, though. Even before the current ammo availability situation I could never find any in stock whenever I've gone looking for them.

As Rpg said, 148gr WC can also make for a decent self defense load as well as a practice load. It has the potential to cut a full-caliber wound channel and from the data I've seen is not likely to pose an overpenetration risk like other non-HP bullets. I've got half-a-box of it on hand as a low recoil carry option. It's only downside is that it can be difficult to reload under stress, but for the most part, reloading in the middle of a gunfight is very unlikely, so I would practice it, but not worry about it too much. You could always carry BB ammo, or some other HP ammo, as reloads.

To sum up, my suggestion would be to hold onto your BB ammo for carry use and look for whatever standard pressure practice ammo you can find. 148gr WC would be a good choice as it can also serve as defensive ammo. Given our current ammo availability situation, you may just have to settle for whatever you can get and do the best you can with it. Regardless of bullet type, shot placement is still the most important factor.

Just my opinion.

Last edited by ContinentalOp; 09-14-2020 at 09:27 PM.
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Old 09-15-2020, 09:04 PM
AJR337 AJR337 is offline
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Hopefully, I'm not breaking any rules by posting a link to another site but this is a great thread...

Project: Break my J frame.
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Old 09-15-2020, 09:36 PM
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My 452 that I bought new in 2012 has around 1500 rounds give or take. Still tight still shooting good.
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Two Revolvers every day
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Old 09-18-2020, 10:47 PM
heeter3 heeter3 is offline
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Ive had mine since 1995 when I went into dicks.Ive carried it daily for 25 years and shot it alot even after retirement in 2005 and the only repair except for considerable wear to the finish was a broken firing pin and a replaced firing pin spring.I will hand it down to my son and hopefully he will to his son.It may not be a beautiful collector but I hope they appreciate the patina, honest carry wear,utility and performance as much as I do.

Last edited by heeter3; 09-19-2020 at 02:29 AM. Reason: Spelling
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Old 09-18-2020, 11:54 PM
kaaskop49 kaaskop49 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heeter3 View Post
Ive had mine since 1995 when I went into dicks.Ive carried it daily for 25 years and shot it alot even after retirement in 2005 and the only repair except for considerable wear to the finish was a broken firing pin and a replaced firing pin spring.I will hand it down to my son and hopefully he will to his son.It may not be a beautiful collector but I hope they apreciate the patina, honest carry wear,utility and performance as much as I do.
^^^what he said. Add to the above, the ability to handle the 158gr +P LHP round, my favorite in all .38 Special revolvers for decades. Be safe, partner, check 6.

Kaaskop49
Shield #5103
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Old 09-19-2020, 06:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyTyinFool View Post
Minor (major?) thread hijack...

When I read "442" in the subject line, I thought this might be about an Oldsmobile 4-4-2

A buddy and I had one when we were young and stupid.

Pulled the motor apart and installed a cam, polished the valves, hogged out the intake manifold, headers, installed a B&M shift kit, blah, blah blah...

Burned up 2 sets of TA Radials on the rear and had a ton of fun!


Hijack over, you may return to your embroidery...

I canít believe I got all the way to the end of your hijack post and I still donít know what kind of stereo and speakers were in your 442.....
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Old 09-19-2020, 03:09 PM
uncleted327 uncleted327 is offline
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I doubt too many people will outlive the useful life of any S&W of any vintage. I see no difference in longevity from the old models to the new ones.
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Old 09-19-2020, 03:16 PM
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Lou_the_welder Lou_the_welder is offline
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Really like the 442-1 pro. With moonclips!
And can be used with or without.
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Old 09-19-2020, 05:09 PM
yep380 yep380 is offline
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Iíve shot about 500 hand-loaded wadcutters through my 442-1 and itís still tight. IĎve also pocket carried it for a few years and the finish didnít hold up as well as my mid70s M36.

As long as itís mechanically sound, that gun oughta shoot as well as the day you bought it.
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