Charter Arms Undercover and Plus P

Charter Arms Undercover and Plus P

This is a discussion on Charter Arms Undercover and Plus P within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hi Gunnies, I've owned a Charter Arms Undercover for 25-30 years now. I've always wondered about using .38 Spl +P ammo. I've never really found ...

Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Charter Arms Undercover and Plus P

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array FastDraw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    602

    Charter Arms Undercover and Plus P

    Hi Gunnies,


    I've owned a Charter Arms Undercover for 25-30 years now. I've always wondered about using .38 Spl +P ammo. I've never really found a definitive answer.

    I went to the Charter Arm site and this:

    "Q. Can I shoot +P in my .38 revolver?
    A.Charter .38's are among the smallest revolvers in this caliber. Yes they can handle +P but we do not recommend it for the following reasons:

    +P ammo requires a four-inch minimum barrel to burn the extra powder. Therefore, in a two-inch barrel the extra powder is burned after the bullet leaves the barrel creating more recoil and making it harder to come back to target.

    We recommend a standard velocity load and practice with round nose lead rounds which are the least expensive. When you load for protection, use a jacketed or hollow point in the same grain you practice with."


    Soooooo, I guess I'm not sure if the +P applies to my 30 year old Undercover or not......???

    I'd also like to know from you guys what you think about +P out of a two inch barrel..... Is the extra powder being burned "after" the bullet is long gone??

    Thanks......

    Be Alert and Stay Safe

    FastDraw


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    4,469
    It sounds like +P is a waist of energy in a 2" snub nose.

    I have read about rounds that are specifically made for snub nose revolvers.
    Don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see!
    -Tony Soprano

  3. #3
    Member Array gaowlpoop's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Perry, GA
    Posts
    68
    It is my understanding that a steady diet of +P ammo will "stretch" the frame on the older guns. I keep +P in mine when I carry but I practice with light hand loads.
    Steven
    The "news media" has ceased being the watch dog of the people and has become the apologist for an irresponsible government.

  4. #4
    Moderator
    Array bmcgilvray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    10,470
    Hi Fastdraw;

    The +P ammunition does give increased velocities, even from 2-inch barrels, but the longer barrel lengths do make more efficient use of it.

    Over the years I have chronographed a number of .38 Special loads in most barrel lengths from 2-inch to 8 3/8-inch. Here are typical examples pulled from my notes, showing both a handload and a factory load. Revolvers used were a 2-inch Smith & Wesson Chief's Special and a 4-inch Smith & Wesson Model 10.

    Handload using 158 grain cast lead semi-wadcutter and Unique powder.

    4.8 grains Unique: 2-inch velocity, 806 fps, 4-inch 858 fps
    5.4 grains Unique: 2-inch velocity, 847 fps, 4-inch 935 fps



    Comparison of .38 Special factory loads: Winchester lead 158 grain standard velocity ammunition and Winchester lead 158 grain +P ammunition.

    158 grain standard : 2-inch velocity 683 fps, 4-inch velocity 741 fps
    158 grain +P: 2-inch velocity 830 fps, 4-inch velocity 962 fps

    Generally the 2-inch snub barrel will show some velocity increase with high performance ammunition over similar standard velocity ammunition. The amount of increase varies widely. The longer barrels do make the most efficient use of the +P loads.



    To illustrate long barrel performance, here are the same two handloads and Winchester loads fired from an 8 3/8-inch Smith & Wesson Model 14 K-38 Masterpiece.

    4.8 grains Unique: 920 fps
    5.4 grains Unique: 1007 fps

    Standard velocity 158 grain: 787 fps
    +P 158 grain: 1051 fps

    I have not fired any of the so-called "short barrel" loads over the chronograph but I am sure that they would also offer increased velocities from longer barrels over short barrels. "Short barrel" terminology is a cool marketing ploy.

    While I wouldn't feel inadequately armed to carry a snub .38 Special loaded with standard velocity semi-wadcutters I do choose the +P 158 grain lead semi-wadcutter ammunition or its handloaded equivalent for use in all my .38 Special self defense revolvers, regardless of barrel length.
    Last edited by bmcgilvray; April 5th, 2010 at 12:32 AM.

  5. #5
    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Under a Volkswagen somewhere in Florida
    Posts
    9,452
    Quote Originally Posted by gaowlpoop View Post
    It is my understanding that a steady diet of +P ammo will "stretch" the frame on the older guns. I keep +P in mine when I carry but I practice with light hand loads.
    ^^that's what I do with my 1962 S&W 49.^^
    Know Guns, Know Safety, Know Peace.
    No Guns, No Safety, No Peace.

  6. #6
    VIP Member
    Array TX-JB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Sugar Land, TX
    Posts
    5,739
    Quote Originally Posted by gaowlpoop View Post
    I keep +P in mine when I carry but I practice with light hand loads.
    Ditto... This is what I do with all my 5-shot aluminum framed revolvers, regardless who makes them...
    "Texas can make it without the United States, but the United States can't make it without Texas!".... Sam Houston

    Retired LEO
    Firearms Instructor
    NRA Life Member

  7. #7
    Distinguished Member Array REVMAN's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    1,915
    Ditto here also.....carry plusP in my S&W 638 but practice with standard 38s. Some good info in post above...thanks!
    Always put Jesus first in your life.
    NRA (Lifetime Member)
    U.S. Navy Vet.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array Lewis128's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Cape Girardeau, Mo.
    Posts
    657
    I asked Charter customer service the same question. Got the answer pretty much as other's have said.

  9. #9
    VIP Member Array searcher 45's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    TEXAS
    Posts
    4,208
    I would not shoot +P ammo in a 30 year old Charter Arms with the info received in this thread.
    NOT LIVING IN FEAR, JUST READY!!!
    I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness,
    nor the arrow for its swiftness,
    nor the warrior for his glory.
    I love only that which they defend.
    -J.R.R. Tolkien

  10. #10
    Distinguished Member Array Stetson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Augusta,Maine
    Posts
    1,630
    I was always told it was because the revolvers were aluminum frame thats why
    you didn't use +plus in them as they would not stand up to a heavy diet of them.

  11. #11
    Member Array Bill DeShivs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Tenn
    Posts
    61
    The Charter guns have steel frame.
    You don't need +P ammunition. Target wadcutters work very well for practice and defense.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Array DIABLO9489's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Buffalo
    Posts
    1,071
    Quote Originally Posted by REVMAN View Post
    Ditto here also.....carry plusP in my S&W 638 but practice with standard 38s. Some good info in post above...thanks!
    Same here...

    Quote Originally Posted by searcher 45 View Post
    I would not shoot +P ammo in a 30 year old Charter Arms with the info received in this thread.
    I second that thought
    Colt New Agent, Dan Wesson V-Bob, Glock 19,20SF, 23, 26, 27, 29, 30SF, 36, Kahr P380 w/CT, PM9, PM45, CW9(SOLD), Kel-Tec P32, P3AT, PF9(SOLD), Kimber Ultra Crimson Carry II, Stainless Pro TLE/RL II (SOLD), Rohrbaugh R9s, Ruger LCP w/CT, LCR, SP101 S&W J-Frame 638 w/CT, M&P 340 w/CT, Walther PPK/S

  13. #13
    VIP Member Array frankmako's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Parts Unknown
    Posts
    3,882
    i carry +p+ hydro shok in a old s&w model 60. at the range and q-days i shoot 148 gr wad cutters. i don't think it will hurt your gun if you got to shoot some when it hits the fan. but i would not shoot a lot of them. the older guns were not made for them.
    An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.

    Red State State of Mind

  14. #14
    Senior Member Array FastDraw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    602
    Thanks guys for some excellent replies. I do appreciate it.

    My everyday carry guns have been Glocks for over a decade now..... and I'm happy with them. From time to time though I get an urge to carry something else. Sometimes I might carry my Ruger P90 or my SP101, both great guns!! On occasion I might carry a S&W 686.

    I haven't carried the lightweight Charter Arms in many years now...... I've sort of the urge to work try it for a while.

    Thanks again.....

    Be Alert and Stay Safe

    FastDraw

Sponsored Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Similar Threads

  1. Charter Arms .38 undercover from '63
    By Rayz in forum Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: April 8th, 2010, 02:31 PM
  2. Charter Arms Undercover
    By 1911luver in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: September 16th, 2009, 10:11 PM
  3. Charter arms undercover .38?
    By 1911luver in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: August 1st, 2008, 09:47 AM
  4. Charter Arms Undercover vs S&W 642
    By Zach Riggs in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: July 29th, 2008, 10:35 AM
  5. Charter Arms Undercover
    By mr surveyor in forum Defensive Carry Guns
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: September 29th, 2007, 09:33 AM

Search tags for this page

can charter arms 38 handle plus p rounds
,
can i use winchester 38 special in plus p revolver
,
charter arms 38 p
,
charter arms 38 special plus p
,
charter arms 38 special snub nose
,

charter arms 38 special undercover ammo

,
charter arms undercover .38 special ammo
,
charter arms undercover 38 special ammo
,

charter arms undercover p

,
charter arms undercover p ammo
,

charter arms undercover plus p

,
undercover 38 special ammunition
Click on a term to search for related topics.