The mighty 38 spl

This is a discussion on The mighty 38 spl within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Yeah, there it is. The big iron! Humpback hammer, pre-war blue, period target stocks and all. An actual N-Frame Smith & Wesson .38 Special revolver ...

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  1. #61
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    Yeah, there it is. The big iron! Humpback hammer, pre-war blue, period target stocks and all. An actual N-Frame Smith & Wesson .38 Special revolver in all its glory!
    “No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual carelessness of aim with the first shot.”

    Theodore Roosevelt, The Wilderness Hunter, 1893

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  3. #62
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    I still wonder why I'm such a fan of the .38 special revolver, having grown up in the age of the Glock. I have my full size 9, ccw 9, and pocket 380, and the rest are all revolvers. I like the classic looks, the functional history, and the fact that I can buy a police trade in that's been walking the beat for decades (and will be with me for decades to come). I figure my old model 10's and 36's have found a comfy retirement, relaxing by the bed stand or joining me and the dog for a walk in the park.

  4. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmcgilvray View Post
    Yeah, there it is. The big iron! Humpback hammer, pre-war blue, period target stocks and all. An actual N-Frame Smith & Wesson .38 Special revolver in all its glory!
    My Dad used it in competition, if notice (which I'm sure you have, Bryan) it has a trigger stop. Popular thing to do back then, drill & tap the trigger guard and install a set-screw, poor man's over travel stop.
    "The pistol, learn it well, carry it always ..." ~ Jeff Cooper

    "Diligentia Vis Celeritas"

    "There is very little new, and the forgotten is constantly being rediscovered."
    ~ Tiger McKee

  5. #64
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    Just yesterday afternoon, I looked out my office window and saw a GIANT alligator turtle crawl out of the lake and up onto the dam. At the moment, an LCP was in my right rear pocket and a J-frame .38 in my desk drawer. It was barely a cognizant decision that I grabbed the .38. I know those suckers are fast, and I can easily stand off 30' with that J-frame and take the back of his head off in single-action (you only get one shot with these quick prehistoric devils).

    He must have heard me come out the office door, because he was just a ripple in the water when I caught sight again. I meant to bring my scoped .22 this morning, so I can just pick him off from the office deck, but forgot. I'll post a pic of this monster if I get him.

    'Anyway, just another testament to the ubiquitous utility of the good-ol' .38 spl (single action surgical shooting).
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  6. #65
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    Given the popularity of the .38 Special, what surprises (and annoys) me is the relative scarcity of ammo. You can find it, but at Sportsman's Warehouse or Wal-Mart or even Cabela's you have to look for it, it's never stacked up like the 9mm and .40 generic ball, and it's priced about the same as .45 ACP. The latter is particularly confounding since the bullet weight is a big driver in ammo cost, so I'd expect to see prices closer to 9mm than the big-bore stuff. I load my own these days so it's not a big deal, just an observation. About a generation ago when I started buying handgun ammo, the .38 stuff was piled cases high - not any more.
    Smitty
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  7. #66
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    I can find 38, but not the 158 grain with any ease. Sometimes at Cabela's. I will be reloading soon...

    After a relatively lousy start to my day (and I am on vacation), this thread made me smile. Thank you all.

  8. #67
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    Great post, Glockman, and great discussion. I think I have enjoyed reading this thread more than any I can remember. My first handgun was a model 19, nickel plated. But at least 95% of the ammo I shot in it was 38 special. A good friend gave me 3 or 4 boxes of reloaded wadcutters after i acquired it, and I was hooked on handgunning. That wasn't my first experience shooting, I grew up shooting rifles and shotguns, mostly squirrel and rabbit hunting. After shooting those 38 wadcutters that were so accurate and easy to shoot, another friend of mine (a bounty hunter, actually, and quite a colorful character) got me into handloading. That was in 1979.

    Y'all have really done it, now I'm on the lookout for a model 10. I currently have a 642 and a 6" GP100, but that model 10 is really calling!
    bmcgilvray likes this.

  9. #68
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    My LCR has subscribed to this thread.
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  10. #69
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    You didn't have to do a lot to convince me. I own a 442 snub. My first shot of my first load of practice ammo. Put my very first bullet in the center bull at 7 yards with my first shot ever with a snub. I did ok with the other 4. Needles to say I'm sold. I was able to hit a paper plate at 15 yards
    I didn't hit it every time but enough to keep me interested in the gun and the round.
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  11. #70
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    How did I miss this thread the first time around???

    I love the venerable .38spl. My primary carry gun for the last 7 years has been a J frame 642 loaded with the short barrel +p Gold Dots and carried in either a Nemesis or Mika pocket holster. I'm glad I discovered the joys of the 442/642 platform prior to the little. 380 craze kicking up. It never gave me any reason to look around. IMO, it's the quintessential pocket gun. I don't own a 1911 or a Glock (my evil bottom feeder carry gun is a full size XD40), but am thinking about picking up a M10 if I can find a solid specimen.

    Cheers!
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  12. #71
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    My primary carry gun for the past 8 months now. Look at my avatar.
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  13. #72
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    Re: The mighty 38 spl

    I'm glad this thread was resurrected... My first carry gun was a Colt detective... Sold it :( Miss it. Sweet round in a sweet gun.

    Sigh.
    All that said....
    It could be worse.
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  14. #73
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    Another old thread brought back to life.

    Few things beat a snubbie with 38's for personal defense.

  15. #74
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    The 38 is not special.

    It does not hold a candle to the 357 magnum. The Winchester 125 Grain Magnum clocks 1250 FPS out of a 640 Pro, I would say that is a significant gain over the 850 FPS you get from a standard velocity 38 special in a snubby. Before somebody starts whining about blast and recoil, stay on the porch if you can't handle it. I have seen real people shot with both, the 38 is not impressive. I have never been attacked by a block of gelatin.

    If I was going to limit myself to 5 shots, why in the world would I also limit myself to 1/2 of the energy?
    My rifle and pistol are tools, I am the weapon.

  16. #75
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    I reckon your entitled to your opinion...but it seems you are in a minority.
    bmcgilvray and msgt/ret like this.
    Ignorance is a long way from stupid, but left unchecked, can get there real fast.

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