New S&W 642, what ammo is okay?

New S&W 642, what ammo is okay?

This is a discussion on New S&W 642, what ammo is okay? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; This is obviously a newbie question. I pick up my new S&W 642, .38 tomorrow. Bought some ammo at Walmart today. Winchester 38 SPL +P, ...

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Thread: New S&W 642, what ammo is okay?

  1. #1
    New Member Array MangoMike's Avatar
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    New S&W 642, what ammo is okay?

    This is obviously a newbie question. I pick up my new S&W 642, .38 tomorrow. Bought some ammo at Walmart today. Winchester 38 SPL +P, 125 gr JHP, Perosnal Protection. The dealer where I'm buying the gun sells a hollow point bullet for something like $18 for 20 shells. Wally World charged me $13 for 50. First question, is the WM ammo okay for carry/personal pretection, or is there something special about my dealers stuff?

    I really only wanted to pick up a light round for range use, to get familiar with the gun. WM offered a FMJ at 130 gr, or this hollow point at 125 gr. for just a little more. At that price I choice the hollow point thinking I could kill two birds with one stone, cheap ammo to learn the gun with, but hollow point for protections.

    Can someone set me straight (if I need to be set straight). My previous gun was a Glock 17. The 9mm ammo came in boxes (FMJ) of 100 for about $10, but I wanted a smaller, simpler gun to carry, especially on my bike as my wife and I roam around the country.

    Oh, is a +P shell okay to shoot through the S&W 642?

    Mike

    Thanks for any help you might supply.
    Last edited by MangoMike; October 1st, 2006 at 10:52 PM.


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    VIP Member Array Superhouse 15's Avatar
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    Ammunition

    Your revolver should be fine with +P ammo. The Manufacturer says it's a go, trust them. I shot some of that Winchester JHP in an SP-101 and it was very accurate. It had a big flash, but was not very dirty. I hear that Winchester uses powder without flash-suppressing additives and doesn't waterproof the primers to save money. It will probably protect you as good as anything. Some of the premium stuff may give better expansion from the short barrel, but it's hard to say. If you would feel better with a load specifically designed for expansion from the short barrel, then spend the extra and use the Winchester for practice or spares in speedloaders.
    Last edited by Superhouse 15; October 2nd, 2006 at 12:30 AM. Reason: oops

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    VIP Member Array ELCruisr's Avatar
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    My backup pistol is a 638, very similar to yours. Most of my range practice is with non +P stuff just because of price. For carry I use the Gold Dot 135 Gr +P Short Barrel Loads. Most .38 HPs are not moving fast enough out of a 2" barrel for reliable expansion. The older "FBI" load of a 152 Gr lead semi-wadcutter hollow point (LSWCHP) is also a good load and can be had in a +P load as well but you usually have to mail order it.

    Enjoy the new gun! They like a firm grip and give yourself time to master shooting it. The snubs are a different beast to shoot but they can be very accurate with some practice.
    If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good. ~ Thomas J. Watson, Jr.

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    New Member Array MangoMike's Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses, and the help...

    Mike

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    Member Array zxd9's Avatar
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    I have a 642 also. +1 on the Gold Dots. They have a version specifically made for the short barrel revolver. Also, try the Winchester White Box (WWB) FMJ bullets at Wally World for range practice. Save ya a few bucks.

    +P in the 642 is fine. I wouldn't shoot +P all the time though. I shoot a cylinder full about once a month just so I remember what it's going to feel like.

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