Ammo suggestions for '50s Det Spl. - Page 2

Ammo suggestions for '50s Det Spl.

This is a discussion on Ammo suggestions for '50s Det Spl. within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I saw in print, Colt claimed you can use +p in there guns. You are to have them checked every 1000 rounds....

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Thread: Ammo suggestions for '50s Det Spl.

  1. #16
    Distinguished Member Array Haywood's Avatar
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    I saw in print, Colt claimed you can use +p in there guns. You are to have them checked every 1000 rounds.


  2. #17
    1943 - 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haywood View Post
    I saw in print, Colt claimed you can use +p in there guns. You are to have them checked every 1000 rounds.
    Where and when did you see this? Have them checked by whom?

    Colt hasn't made a D frame .38 Special revolver since 1996. The Detective Special (4th generation) ceased production in 1995.

    The 3rd generation (1973 to 1986) and the 4th generation (1993 to 1995) Detective Special revolvers, being steel framed, could handle a modest diet of +P ammo, although I'm not sure Colt ever specifically stated these revolvers were +P rated.

    Bear in mind that any small framed revolver, whether +P rated or not, will not last long, relatively speaking, when fed a steady diet of +P ammo.

    The OP has a 2nd generation (1947 to 1972) revolver. His was made circa 1956 and is very definitely not +P rated, because the heat treatment of the steel used back then was not as advanced as it is today.


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  3. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Crunch View Post
    The 3rd generation (1973 to 1986) and the 4th generation (1993 to 1995) Detective Special revolvers, being steel framed, could handle a modest diet of +P ammo, although I'm not sure Colt ever specifically stated these revolvers were +P rated.

    Bear in mind that any small framed revolver, whether +P rated or not, will not last long, relatively speaking, when fed a steady diet of +P ammo.
    +1. The Colt SF-VI manual printed in 1995 does specifically mention .38 Special +P as suitable ammunition on the inside front cover, with the proviso "(will accelerate wear)." On page 17, it states, "Extensive use of +P 38 Special ammunition will accelerate wear in your revolver. For continued satisfactory performance, have it checked at a Colt Authorized Repair Service Station periodically. Intervals should be every 3000 rounds." The manual then specifically cautions against +P+ use.

    I would not use +P ammunition in a Colt D-frame from the 1950s. I'm still voting for a standard-pressure 158-grain semi-wadcutter in such a revolver.

  4. #19
    Senior Member Array slimjim's Avatar
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    I carry an older Colt Cobra (lightweight detective). If I take it to the range I use standard pressure 158gr ball ammo. My carry ammo is Corbon DPX 110gr +p. Excellent performance from a snub. If I ever have to use it, I won't be worried about excessive wear from a couple of rounds that may save my life. My top two choices are Corbon DPX and Speer GD Short Barrel load in these 2 inch guns.

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by slimjim View Post
    If I ever have to use it, I won't be worried about excessive wear from a couple of rounds that may save my life.
    ...a valid point.

  6. #21
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    I'd practice with .38spl after a few +P's for familiarization. I'd carry the 135gr. +P Golddots for social work.

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