.357 Snubby effectiveness v. controllability

.357 Snubby effectiveness v. controllability

This is a discussion on .357 Snubby effectiveness v. controllability within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I know that .357 ammo has been discussed a lot on this board, but I need to know if I am heading in the right ...

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Thread: .357 Snubby effectiveness v. controllability

  1. #1
    Member Array 1911packer's Avatar
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    Question .357 Snubby effectiveness v. controllability

    I know that .357 ammo has been discussed a lot on this board, but I need to know if I am heading in the right direction in finding the best defensive ammo for me.

    I just bought a Taurus 605 snubby and took it to the range to break it in.
    158 grain .38 special was very controllable and I could reacquire the target fairly quickly. 158 grain .357 magnum (Federal Premium) really pitched the nose up and slowed down any accurate shooting.

    What I plan to do is work down until I find something that I can reasonably keep on target but has the most effectiveness.

    In order:
    125 grain .357 magnum
    158 grain .38 special +P+
    158 grain .38 special +P

    Is there anything else I should try? I'm not sure if I should try a "reduced recoil" .357 load.


  2. #2
    Member Array pistola's Avatar
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    Thumbs up You got it

    Sounds like you got a plan.You are definately heading in the right direction.Find what works best for you and your revolver and go for it.The more powerful loadings will handicap your recovery time.There's no free lunch.When you find something in between that you are satisfied with,you are there.
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    Member Array tuttleje's Avatar
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    Try the .357 Gold Dot 135 grain Short Barrel rounds if you want an effective, but controllable, magnum round.

    I carry them in a S&W Model 360.

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    Good plan; IMO drop the .38+P+ portion of the plan; however.

  5. #5
    Member Array Kruz's Avatar
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    I keep my carry gun (2"snub) with 125g .357 personal defence rounds loaded. I feel comfortable with that load and have practiced with that load. even if I just had the chance to get one round off it should do the job nicely.
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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    My experience with .357 has been in the Ruger SP101. It's a 25oz gun. I have shot the 2-1/8" and 3" barrelled variants. By far, by a long margin, the 3" barrel controls the .357 mag better, enabling accurate follow-up shots. Of course, that's another 3/4" of length to manage for concealment, but that can be a small price to pay for the extra control. Of course, once comfortable with the gun, practice can make perfect. For me, though, the slightly longer "snubbie" made all the difference.

    158gr +P's were my choice, in the 3". The heavier push dealt less of a blow than the lighter, sharper kicks.
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    VIP Member Array frankmako's Avatar
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    i carry a model 60 as my "bug" on duty. so i have some seat time with a small wheel gun (30 plus years). the question is how far are you shooting???? a snubby is not a target pistol!!!! it is made for protection. it is made for the close in (i can smell him) to out to five feet. yes, i know some will not like what i said, but if you carry a snubby learn how to "point shoot" at no more than five feet away. work on targets two to three feet the most. shoot five real fast, work on keeping the rounds "center mass". in other words, shoot five real fast, turn and run, reload while running. carry 38 sp +p+ ammo and/or a hot 357 mag ammo. get the best bang for your bucks. i would practice with wad cutter ammo and only shoot the hot ammo some to get the "feel". remember the gun will only have to shoot five rounds, so the gun can take what you put in it.
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    Distinguished Member Array Rexster's Avatar
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    I see many people hold a snubby too low on the grip, which dramatically increases muzzle flip. I find my SP101 snubbies quite controllable, even with 180-grain hunting loads.

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    I carry GoldDot 135 Gr .38 spl +P in my Taurus 605 for controlibility.
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    Loads

    I haven't tried the Short Barrel loads myself, yet. But many have and like them. I would also consider the Remington Gold Saber 125gr load (a medium power load, but not marked on the box as such) and the 145gr Silvertip. A very comfortable load between the ear shattering blast of the 125gr full power and the heavy momentum thump of the 158gr stuff. If I went to a .357 from a .38, I would feel like I should take advantage of the power and carry a +P+ or a magnum at least. If you're only going to use Non +P .38, there are smaller and cheaper guns. Practice a lot with .38s, fire enough magnums to get used to them and take advantage of the extra power.

  11. #11
    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    +1 on the SP101 w/3.06" barrel. Add a Hogue Monogrip you can shoot just about any .357 Mag load with little concern for recoil or follow-up speed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost tracker View Post
    +1 on the SP101 w/3.06" barrel. Add a Hogue Monogrip you can shoot just about any .357 Mag load with little concern for recoil or follow-up speed.
    Good point on the grips. I may just hold off until I get some grips that I like. The rubber grips on the 605 don't seem to quite fill my hand.

    My other concern, is the possible ear damage from firing a .357 in a house. I know that seems minor when your life is on the line, but I would like to be able to hear again after I win a gunfight.

  13. #13
    Member Array Eirerogue's Avatar
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    I'm carrying Gold Dot 135gr. .38's in my 340M&P. Don't need the muzzle flash/blast from the .357. It's not that different in ballistics and is more controllable.

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    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1911packer View Post
    I know that .357 ammo has been discussed a lot on this board, but I need to know if I am heading in the right direction in finding the best defensive ammo for me.

    I just bought a Taurus 605 snubby and took it to the range to break it in.
    158 grain .38 special was very controllable and I could reacquire the target fairly quickly. 158 grain .357 magnum (Federal Premium) really pitched the nose up and slowed down any accurate shooting.

    What I plan to do is work down until I find something that I can reasonably keep on target but has the most effectiveness.

    In order:
    125 grain .357 magnum
    158 grain .38 special +P+
    158 grain .38 special +P

    Is there anything else I should try? I'm not sure if I should try a "reduced recoil" .357 load.

    The old "standard" 357 Magnum was the 125 grain JHP by Federal and the SJHP by Remington. The nice thing is, the standard load is available at Walmart in 100 round boxes for a cheap price. It's now Remington UMC ammo. It's hard to improve on "perfection".

    Make no mistake about it, the 125 "Full House" load is a handfull. It will do you no good to shoot the "baddest cartridge" if you can't hit what you're aiming at. You may want to look at something else, especially in a "snubbie".

    I got rid of my S&W 640 because it hurt to shoot it with "Full House" loads. If you are going to consider 38 Special I would maybe look at some other options, as far as bullets and weight.

    Take a look at 125 Grain +P 38 Special SJHP by Remington. It's also available at WalMart in 100 round boxes. I would also consider the Gold Dot 135 Grain "Snubbie" load. Corbon makes some good stuff too, IMHO. I have Corbon 125 Grain +P or Corbon 110 Grain +P's in my "snubbie" most days.

    These days my "snubbie" is an Airweight S&W loaded with 38 SPL. I save the .357 Magnum for the bigger guns.

    Biker

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    Ex Member Array Travis Morgan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frankmako View Post
    a snubby is not a target pistol!!!! it is made for protection.
    A "defensive" shooting probably will not even require aiming. (I'm not saying "don't aim") If you really have to square up, get your sight picture and squeeze, you just murdered someone.

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