Best Ammo for .357 revolver?

This is a discussion on Best Ammo for .357 revolver? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I'm used to carrying a small .380 8-round auto for routine carry (normally loaded with HP Powerballs), but I just purchased a .357 revolver (Taurus/Rossi) ...

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Thread: Best Ammo for .357 revolver?

  1. #1
    Member Array xsquidgator's Avatar
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    Best Ammo for .357 revolver?

    I'm used to carrying a small .380 8-round auto for routine carry (normally loaded with HP Powerballs), but I just purchased a .357 revolver (Taurus/Rossi) with 2" barrel for possible carry.

    What would be appropriate ammo to load for concealed carry and for home defense? I practice with .38 special rounds mostly, and bought a box of .357 mag HPs and another box of .357 mag Gold Dot HPs. However, I'm a little concerned with maybe having too much power there and what might be behind the bad guy, backstop issues. What would be good self-defense ammo? The choices I'm aware of are the Glaser safety rounds (they break up and won't keep going and going?), .38 special, .38 special +P, and .357 magnum.

    For home defense, I live in a suburban neighborhood with maybe a dozen houses on my street, neighbors on both sides and a neighbor across the street 100' away. For carry, I don't carry at work, but do carry while running errands, driving around town, etc. I like the stopping power available in the small .357 but I think I'd like to be judicious in using it. Any suggestions?

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array swiftyjuan's Avatar
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    I use the Gold Dot HPs myself (Taurus605). The are accurate (from my gun), and if you are going to carry a .357, they are hard to beat.
    If the power is more than you think is appropriate, go to +Ps. You are right to be concerned about the background of the BG, but any caliber will have the same concerns. What if a round misses, or passes through his arm? You are responsible to protect others from your fire as much as to protect yourself from the BG;probably moreso. My 2 cents.
    John
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    Lifetime NRA member

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    My .357 carry category ammo was and is CorBon 140 grainers. There are tho many good options. I still also like my homeloads with 158 SWC gaschecks but have not classed them as carry ammo.

    May I suggest - go browse Steve Camp's site http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/ - he has done much testing which gives some most useful info.
    Chris - P95
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    VIP Member Array Superhouse 15's Avatar
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    Try these

    The Remington Gold Saber 125gr is a medium velocity load, although not advertised a such. More than a .38 +p, less than a full .357. Also reasonable muzzle flash and blast. Got fine performance in calibrated scientific wet newspaper from a short (3") SP101. As for overpenetration, it's a risk with any round, as was mentioned. In my .38 non +P I use my stockpile of Nyclads or 110gr Hydra Shocks. In +P I use either Cor Bon DPX or my stockpile of 158gr +P Nyclads or 158gr SWCHP+Ps. In my SP101 .38 I use Cor Bon 110 +P+ or Federal 110gr +P+. In defensive .357s I use the Federal or Remington 125gr JHP full power loads. If I carry the .357 I want to take advantage of the power. The others are just the best I've found in those particular loads.

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    Senior Member Array Fragman's Avatar
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    barrel length

    A 2" barrel is really not going to work well with standard .357 loads. The powder does not have time to fully burn. Hence you lose a lot of the power. 38+P's are often a better bet.

    That said, I believe Speer were coming out with a .357 round specially made for short barrels. Don't know much more than that, maybe someone else has more details

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    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    .357 snubby ammo

    First of all, here are a couple of links to good articles on ammo for snubbies:
    Wiley Clapp article on snubby ammo
    Jeff Cooper article on snubby ammo

    I have three snubbies that I sometimes use for defense, a Colt Detective Special (.38), a S&W 642 (.38) and a S&W 66 (.357). I keep the two .38s loaded with the new Speer 135 grain Gold Dot +P ammo, which has excellent ballistics. It comes out of the two inch barrel at about 860 fps with 225 ft-lbs of energy. I think that is very good for a .38 snubby.

    In the .357 I use Remington's 125 grain Golden Saber with muzzle velocity (per Remington website in 4 inch barrel) of 1220 fps. I figure it might clock 1100 fps from my 2.5 inch barrel. It has low flash and is quite controllable in the 32 ounce model 66, so I am happy with it. There is hotter .357 out there in some hunting loads, but I think they are too much for a snubby.

    As far as over penetration goes, my main consideration is to hit the attacker center mass with something that will penetrate 12 inches in gelatin and expand well, even through layers of clothing. I realize that if I miss my target, or hit the periphery of the target, the round will keep going and could hit something else downrange. But that is a risk with any caliber, not just .357. You simply have to be aware of what is behind your target, but you'll only have a split second to consider it.

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    Member Array symr00's Avatar
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    I've been carrying the Speer GD 125gr and the 135gr Short Barrel. At home I switch them out with GD +P 135gr 38 Special. I find less recoil in the short barrel GD 135gr .357. I'm not sure I'd trust my life with Glasers because while they will break up on impact, that's not good if you have to shoot through an arm or hand. That's why you want that 12" or more penetration.

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    Member Array Astute's Avatar
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    Best is Best

    This is like asking "What is the best candy bar"? Everyone has an opinion, but the real truth is "any premium quality name brand hollow point ammo will get the job done. It's even worth considering specialty ammo ie. MagSafe, Glaser, etc. depending on what your planning to use it for and the conditions of carry.

  10. #9
    Member Array DaveT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fragman View Post
    A 2" barrel is really not going to work well with standard .357 loads. The powder does not have time to fully burn. Hence you lose a lot of the power. 38+P's are often a better bet.

    That said, I believe Speer were coming out with a .357 round specially made for short barrels. Don't know much more than that, maybe someone else has more details
    I ordered the Speer SB 357 ammo week before last, my dealer called and he received the package. I hope to pick it up on Monday and try it out at the range this week. I ordered it for both my 3 inch Kimber 45 and my S&W snubby 357.

    Here's a thread on the Speer short barreled ammo from a few weeks back:

    http://www.combatcarry.com/vbulletin...ad.php?t=14572

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