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  1. #1
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    38 revolver. Worth it?

    Just wondering if you think the 38 caliber is worth carrying for ccw use? I know the 380's in semi auto are the minimum, but is a 38 ok? Thoughts?? Tnx, HG

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  3. #2
    hideit's Avatar
    hideit is offline Senior Member
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    yes
    they are almost identical
    380:
    200 FPE - typical 95g FMJ at 955 fps
    also rem 102g JHP @ 940 fps = 200 E

    38 special:
    Rem has three (non +P loads) that have 200, 200, and 220

  4. #3
    BeefyBeefo's Avatar
    BeefyBeefo is offline Senior Member
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    I think .38spcl is plenty, especially with the availability of +p rounds.

    -Jeff-

  5. #4
    TOF's Avatar
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    Most Police Dept's. carried them for many years.
    If purchasing a new revolver I would choose one that can handle .357 but use .38 Spl. for practice and .38+p for carry if in warmer climates. For colder climates where a BG might be wearing heavy layers of clothing I would load it up with .357.

    If you buy a .38 you will not be able to load up to .357 but buying a .357 will allow down loading to .38.

    I have a Taurus Model 605 .38/.357 which is a very accurate snubby and didn't break the bank.

  6. #5
    hideit's Avatar
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    ditto to TOF

    yea i thought of that too
    If you are buying a gun then i would NOT buy a 38spl but a 357 for resale value if ever the need arises

    I wonder why they even still make a 38special - seems a waste of time

  7. #6
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    I carry S & W 642 daily. Pocket carry in a Mika pocket holster. It always goes bang, the Keltecs were having issues when I purchased it. I cannot imagine shooting a 357 in a lightweight, so the thought never crossed my mind. Easy to conceal, easy to carry and always goes bang....love it

  8. #7
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    Thanks 4 the advice guys. HG

  9. #8
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    Remember, .38 special was the cops gun for quite a long time....I have several and I still carry one most every day in snubnose....they are still quite capable weapons.

  10. #9
    Teuthis is offline Member
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    I have two S&W Snubs that I carry CCW. I also used them in service and I have confidence in standard .38 Special rounds in snubs at self defense distances.

    I can overall agree with TOF about getting something that shoots .357., if you are considering a full-sized revolver. However, I might opt for the .38 Special in a snub for CCW. It is a little smaller and lighter in service. Silvertips, or Golden Sabre standard power rounds are ample for self defense. I also have some Federal Low Recoil Self Defense rounds for my snubbies. Some people, myself included, often use wadcutters for self defense in snubs or other dedicated .38 Special revolvers.

    People tend to overlook that .357 rounds create a massive fireball. At night, especially in a snub, you would be basically blinded to further sight in the dark after one round. I have shot .357 magnum at night from a six inch barrel and it is blinding. Your only possible consolation is that it blinds your opponent too.

    If you have a .38 special revolver, I think you have an excellent self defense weapon for an armed citizen.

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teuthis View Post
    I have shot .357 magnum at night from a six inch barrel and it is blinding.
    Yeah, but for anyone watching, it's impressive as you know what! Especially out of a snubbie. Always good for a show, not much for night defense.

  12. #11
    BigMatt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TOF View Post
    Most Police Dept's. carried them for many years.
    If purchasing a new revolver I would choose one that can handle .357 but use .38 Spl. for practice and .38+p for carry if in warmer climates. For colder climates where a BG might be wearing heavy layers of clothing I would load it up with .357.

    If you buy a .38 you will not be able to load up to .357 but buying a .357 will allow down loading to .38.

    I have a Taurus Model 605 .38/.357 which is a very accurate snubby and didn't break the bank.


    My father left me a 605 I was gonna get rid of it but I think it will be a descent carry gun... What do you carry yours with?? Will it fit in a pocket holster ? any advice welcome...

  13. #12
    jeb21 is offline Member
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    The 605 will fit in a pocket holster, though it might be a bit heavy for that type of carry. Nevertheless, a snubbie 38/357 is always worth having, and for the relatively small amount money you would get on a sale or trade you are better off just keeping it. Taurus has long been recognized for making nice 5 shot snubbies.

    I have a similar revolver, the Smith Model 60, that passes for my always gun. I carry it in a Galco leather IWB - I believe it is the Walkabout, and a Galco OWB holster called the Speed Master. Both conceal the weapon very well, and are comfortable. I keep a speed strip in my jean's coin pocket for reloads.

  14. #13
    TOF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teuthis View Post

    People tend to overlook that .357 rounds create a massive fireball. At night, especially in a snub, you would be basically blinded to further sight in the dark after one round. I have shot .357 magnum at night from a six inch barrel and it is blinding. Your only possible consolation is that it blinds your opponent too.

    If you have a .38 special revolver, I think you have an excellent self defense weapon for an armed citizen.
    The flash is powder dependant and you can obtain rounds that don't light up the sky.

    Hot 2400 loads generate a huge fireball in the day time from snubbies if that is what you want whereas VihtaVuori N110 can't be seen in the same conditions.

    The 605 is a good revolver Matt, it can be carried the same as any J frame. Ours will yield 5/8 inch groups SA from sandbags and has a good trigger action in both SA and DA. I bought ours for my wife but have carried it in my pocket on a couple of occasions but would prefer IWB.

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeb21 View Post
    I carry it in a Galco leather IWB - I believe it is the Walkabout
    Probably a Stow-n-Go, actually. Walkabout is for autos only.
    Employed by Galco Gunleather - www.galcogunleather.com / Veteran OEF VIII

    Donate to the Christian and Stephanie Nielson Recovery fund: http://www.nierecovery.com/.

    All opinions, particularly those involving politics and Glocks, are mine and not Galco's.

  16. #15
    jeb21 is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Barham View Post
    Probably a Stow-n-Go, actually. Walkabout is for autos only.

    Thanks, I bought a Smith 642 five years ago and the holster came with it, so I am not sure of the model. I really do like it though (actually I like both the revolver and the holster, I carried the 642 as my primary ccw for a number of years but finally retired it to a glove box gun in favor of a slightly heavier model 60).

    Edit to add - looking at the holster again and the Galco products it looks more like the Scout except it does not have the j clip rather it has the clip like the stow and go. The holster's id number is SCT122

  17. #16
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    This was a good post to read as I consider my next purchase. I think a lot of people - myself included - get caught up in the "bigger is better" mindset. For a long time I wouldn't consider anything but a 45 - based on what others suggested. The more I read, the less concerned I am about the size - that's what I tell my wife -

  18. #17
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    Hey Hoss I will put it this way my friend My Mom and Dad are dead and gone now and my Oldest Brother has his 38 snub revolver that he bought many years ago and my brother also has moms old Rohm 22LR snub thats all they would shoot,In my Opinion I think a 38 is a great caliber.I myself shoot 22LR and 22Mag right now and I am probably going to get a 38 for my CCW after the first of the year.My 22Mag is a SA so I will get a DA in a 38 and small enought for CCW.Hey good luck on what ever you decide on getting.

    WB

  19. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by TOF View Post
    The flash is powder dependant and you can obtain rounds that don't light up the sky.

    Hot 2400 loads generate a huge fireball in the day time from snubbies if that is what you want whereas VihtaVuori N110 can't be seen in the same conditions.
    What about factory ammunition? If I carried I wouldn't want to carry handloads for possible legal reasons.

  20. #19
    Teuthis is offline Member
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    There is no way that at night a 357 isn't going to flash considerably. Factory ammo or handloads are going to flash brightly.

    I experimented with that idea for years in handloading, and we never found a load that didn't create a large flash at night in a 357 magnum.

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