Old Guy has question about carry ammo.

This is a discussion on Old Guy has question about carry ammo. within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; 25 years ago, I carried a S&W Model 19 2.5" .357 loaded with Remington .38 special +P 125 gr. SJHP. Now that Wisconsin has concealed ...

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    Member Array redwilson's Avatar
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    Old Guy has question about carry ammo.

    25 years ago, I carried a S&W Model 19 2.5" .357 loaded with Remington .38 special +P 125 gr. SJHP. Now that Wisconsin has concealed carry, I still carry my Model 19 using +P 125 gr. SJHP. I bought a box of Hornady Critical Defense .38 special 110 gr. FTX. Of the two, which would you say is the better round for defense? I worked in the Security industry and as a Private Detective and was allowed to carry a firearm, but not concealed. Been retired for 10 years and kind of lost touch with the shooting world until I got my concealed license. Thanks for any feed back.
    Retired Private Detective
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    I would stick with the 125 grain.

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    The new Hornady shows good data, as does the "original" 125 gr tried and true loads. At the distances most gunfights take place at, I'm not sure it is much of a difference. I would personally sick with the 125 gr SJHP.

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    Member Array chasbo00's Avatar
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    Neither. The Speer Gold Dot 135 grain .38 Special +P designed for short-barreled revolvers is among a very few 38 Special loads that have performed well in FBI tests from two inch revolvers. Corbon's 110 grain .38 Special +P all copper bullet is another good option. If you want to shoot a hot and speedy .357 load, that's a different story.
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    Member Array redwilson's Avatar
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    Thanks for the feed back...I want to stay with a .38 special round...The .357 is a little much for me.
    Retired Private Detective
    S&W Model 19 2.5" .357



    The original point and click interface was a Smith & Wesson.

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    Member Array Archie's Avatar
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    Sadly, the 125 grain .357 Magnum loading is famous for cracking barrels of M19 revolvers. Not the +p .38 Special; the .357 Magnum load. I carry a 2.5 inch M19 also. I shoot .357 Magnum Winchester Silvertips in it as a carry load. However, you want to carry .38 Special +p ammo.

    I'm an old guy too. I prefer heavier bullets. My choice for a .38 Special load is the 158 SWCL standard or +p loading by Federal, Winchester and somebody else. But the 125 grain Remington works well. Probably the 110 weight bullets will do. However, I firmly believe heavier is better.
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    Distinguished Member Array 21bubba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archie View Post
    Sadly, the 125 grain .357 Magnum loading is famous for cracking barrels of M19 revolvers. Not the +p .38 Special; the .357 Magnum load. I carry a 2.5 inch M19 also. I shoot .357 Magnum Winchester Silvertips in it as a carry load. However, you want to carry .38 Special +p ammo.

    I'm an old guy too. I prefer heavier bullets. My choice for a .38 Special load is the 158 SWCL standard or +p loading by Federal, Winchester and somebody else. But the 125 grain Remington works well. Probably the 110 weight bullets will do. However, I firmly believe heavier is better.
    Actually it was the 110 grain .357 loads that cracked the forcing cone on "some" model 19's after many many rounds fired.

    Use a little narrower brush when you paint your opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 21bubba View Post
    Actually it was the 110 grain .357 loads that cracked the forcing cone on "some" model 19's after many many rounds fired.

    Use a little narrower brush when you paint your opinion.
    110 grain may be guilty as well but I'm with Archie. The 125 grain magnum loads get lots of press as to possible cause of cracked forcing cones.
    P.S.-A spoonful of honey helps the unwarranted criticism go down.

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    Senior Member Array sigs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redwilson View Post
    Thanks for the feed back...I want to stay with a .38 special round...The .357 is a little much for me.
    Don't blame you at all the .38s are still a great round in the Model 19. Many swear by the so-called FBI load the 158gr LSWCHP +P. But you are surely fine with what you have been using.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chasbo00 View Post
    Neither. The Speer Gold Dot 135 grain .38 Special +P designed for short-barreled revolvers is among a very few 38 Special loads that have performed well in FBI tests from two inch revolvers. Corbon's 110 grain .38 Special +P all copper bullet is another good option. If you want to shoot a hot and speedy .357 load, that's a different story.
    DPX Ammo 38 Special +P 110 Grain Barnes XPB Hollow Point Lead-Free Box of 20

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    Distinguished Member Array 21bubba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sigs View Post
    110 grain may be guilty as well but I'm with Archie. The 125 grain magnum loads get lots of press as to possible cause of cracked forcing cones.
    P.S.-A spoonful of honey helps the unwarranted criticism go down.
    What I was trying to point out was the fact that talking (or posting ) in absolutes is a way erroneous information is spread.

    P.S. Thank you Mary Poppins.

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    VIP Member Array shockwave's Avatar
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    I keep my .38/.357s loaded with the DPX .38+P 110 gr. Recoil feels somewhere between standard .38 and .357, and the DPX has excellent expansion and velocity.
    "It may seem difficult at first, but everything is difficult at first."

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    Quote Originally Posted by 21bubba View Post
    What I was trying to point out was the fact that talking (or posting ) in absolutes is a way erroneous information is spread.

    P.S. Thank you Mary Poppins.
    Thanks, "Mary Poppins" that's one I've never been called. I'll add it to the resume. But, "actually it was the 110 grain" sounds mighty "absolute" to my Poppin's ears.

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    I use 125 grain Golden Saber in my SP101 .357, but wouldn't hesitate to use the aforementioned FBI load
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    The old .38 Special FBI load and many .38 Special hollow-point loads have failed to expand in FBI test protocols when fired from a snubnose and thru heavy clothing.

    38_Sp_BUG_load_sample.jpg

    More info here:

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