+ P ammo

+ P ammo

This is a discussion on + P ammo within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I have been reading other sites outside this site about the extra pressure in +P ammo and have seen several opinions expressed. Just a couple ...

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Thread: + P ammo

  1. #1
    Member Array ezman38's Avatar
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    + P ammo

    I have been reading other sites outside this site about the extra pressure in +P ammo and have seen several opinions expressed.
    Just a couple of days ago I found out on another forum in this defensive carry.com site that my S & W 38 spl revolver is a Model 36 Chiefs Special from 1967 or 68. I does not have a +P on the barrel, so I think that maybe I should not use +P. I would like to do so since I have some 38spl 125gr JHP that I don't want to blast away at the range in my .357 magnum and would rather CC for defensive purposes.

    One opinion is , yes don't use +P because the gun won't hold up. The response to that is it's a liability-insurance thing.

    The other opinion is that years ago ammo was made at a higher pressure in 38spl than the current 38spl +P ammo. The response to this is that years ago they fudged on the figures.

    My opinion is that S&W made a strong pistol in 67 or 68 and shooting a few rounds would not be a problem.

    Any thoughts ?


  2. #2
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    Your Model 36 should be fine with firing +P ammo, in moderation. Just shoot enough +P ammo to allow you to determine the point of impact for your chosen load. Once you know where your gun shoots with +P loads, you can then use standard pressure ammo for most of your practice shooting.

    5 or 10 rounds of +P ammo each range session won't hurt your M36, just don't overdo it.


    When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
    And the women come out to cut up what remains,
    Just roll to your rifle and blow out your brains,
    And go to your God like a soldier.

    Rudyard Kipling


    Terry

  3. #3
    Member Array rmhz1979's Avatar
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    I came across a similar problem with selecting ammunition for my dad's and my 38 specials. He has an original charter arms undercover, that is not +p rated. Thats when I ran into Buffalo Bore. Buffalo Bore makes 3 loads that are not +p rated but are extremely effective according to gelatin testing. Buffalo Bore made this ammunition for people with older revolvers that are not +p rated and it is designed to shoot well in snub nose revolvers. Shooting a few rounds of +p ammo should not hurt your firearm from the reading I have done. The problem I have with that is when I go to the range I like to practice with the load I'm carrying not a load that I'll never use except on the range. http://www.brassfetcher.com/38%20Special.html

  4. #4
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    Thumbs up

    A concentrated effort to improve your "all important" shot placement with standard .38 Spl (not +P or +P+) will go a long way toward building some good confidence in the caliber.
    It's easy to control and follow-up shots can be made accurate and very quick.
    The ease of shooting it and lack of punishing felt recoil should help you to put the bullets right where you want them to go.
    That's always good insurance for coming out on top.
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  5. #5
    Member Array Sam Douthit's Avatar
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    I would caution those reading about +p and shooting it in any .38. The light revolvers made of aluminum alloy may not hold up even for casually shooting high pressure ammo. There is a lot of good ammo for .38 specials out there that are not +P.
    Sambo74
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  6. #6
    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    +P wasn't available in 1967

    Quote Originally Posted by ezman38 View Post
    Just a couple of days ago I found out on another forum in this defensive carry.com site that my S & W 38 spl revolver is a Model 36 Chiefs Special from 1967 or 68. I does not have a +P on the barrel, so I think that maybe I should not use +P.
    I owned handguns and was buying ammo in 1967, and +P was not available at that time. I don't think the term +P had been invented yet. So it is not surprising that a revolver manufactured then would not anticipate +P and stamp it on the barrel.

    As I recall, +P ammo became common about 20 years after your gun was made.

  7. #7
    Member Array rb8941's Avatar
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    It's just my opinion but why would anyone want to shoot +P in a weapon which isn't rated for it? It would seem to be an unnecessary risk.
    Religion won't prevent you from committing a sin. It will, however, prevent you from enjoying it as much as you'd like to.

  8. #8
    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    Rapidly advancing technologies in bullet design & propellant compound are now making a new "Rule of Thumb" Book for shooters to learn every few months. Bullet weight & velocity are no longer the ONLY criteria with which to judge ammo effectiveness. Because there are now .38 Special loads specifically designed to provide maximum stopping effectiveness from lightweight snubbie revolvers WITHOUT exceeding SAAMI specs for standard .38 Spl. chamber pressures...why take the chance?
    Is the reward of 117 extra f.p.s. really worth the risk of ruining a nice Model 36? If it is, then trade it for a new revolver that can take the extra pressure, like a Ruger SP101. Then run the hottest .357 Mag loads your wrist can take.
    There are only TWO kinds of people in this world; those who describe the world as filled with two kinds of people...and those who don't.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Douthit View Post
    I would caution those reading about +p and shooting it in any .38. The light revolvers made of aluminum alloy may not hold up even for casually shooting high pressure ammo.
    The OP's S&W Model 36 is a steel frame, not an alloy frame. Even though it is not officially rated for +P ammo by the factory, it won't be harmed by the occasional use of the hotter loads.

    That doesn't mean the OP necessarily must shoot +P ammo, just that he could, in moderation, do so without fear of damaging his revolver. Actually, with several effective standard pressure loads on the market today, there's not much reason to shoot +P ammo in snubbies anymore.

    Case in point. Until recently, my carry load in my 1967 vintage S&W Model 60 was the Speer 135 grain Gold Dot +P JHP load. I shot enough of it to see where it "printed", then I shot standard presssure loads for range practice. Then my local gun emporium started carrying Buffalo Bore ammo, & I switched to their 158 grain LSWC-HP standard pressure load for EDC. I don't shoot the Speer ammo anymore because I don't have to. But the point is, moderate use of +P ammo didn't damage my M60, and it won't hurt the OP's M36 either.


    When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
    And the women come out to cut up what remains,
    Just roll to your rifle and blow out your brains,
    And go to your God like a soldier.

    Rudyard Kipling


    Terry

  10. #10
    VIP Member Array Cupcake's Avatar
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    One of my first handguns was a charter arms undercover .38. I didn't even know what +p meant and when the guy at the gunshop said "more powerful" I said I'll take 2 boxes please. I jacked that gun up pretty good and ended up. Had to use a mallet to get the cylinder to open or close after that ONE SESSION.

    Use standard pressures of a premium round for carry, and worry more about shot placement than squeezing out a few more feet per second.

    **EDIT TO ADD**
    I do not know whether my snubbie was alloy or steel. It was quite a few years ago.
    Spend few minutes learning about my journey from Zero to Athlete in this
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  11. #11
    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    Actually, with several effective standard pressure loads on the market today, there's not much reason to shoot +P ammo in snubbies anymore
    Exactly my point. I wasn't mistaking a M36 for an Airweight but it's still a "lightweight snubbie revolver". IMHO, ALL j-frames are & even those that are "+P capable" are taking an unnecessary beating when shooting the elevated pressures of +P in light of the effective, standard pressure ammo now available.

    But, like foods that are BAD for me, it's easy to rationalize that anything short of a steady diet of them...and I'll be okay. How many rounds constitute "a few"?
    There are only TWO kinds of people in this world; those who describe the world as filled with two kinds of people...and those who don't.

  12. #12
    VIP Member Array Cupcake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost tracker View Post
    But, like foods that are BAD for me, it's easy to rationalize that anything short of a steady diet of them...and I'll be okay. How many rounds constitute "a few"?
    I don't know about +p rounds, but I've managed to rationalize that a whole bag of oreos in 2 days are ok if I just eat a couple at a time.
    Spend few minutes learning about my journey from Zero to Athlete in this
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  13. #13
    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    I was thinking more about Hickory Smoked Pork Bar-B-Que sandwiches, three or four at a sitting. Dripping with extra-hot sause. Whew...that's Hillbilly Soul Food, Brother, and I should know!

    But I'll will warn you, if you're not fully +P+ certified, you best load-up with something a little less, uh...extreme.
    Last edited by ghost tracker; September 28th, 2007 at 03:41 PM.
    There are only TWO kinds of people in this world; those who describe the world as filled with two kinds of people...and those who don't.

  14. #14
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    Talking OK, Guys

    Back on topic, please.


    When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
    And the women come out to cut up what remains,
    Just roll to your rifle and blow out your brains,
    And go to your God like a soldier.

    Rudyard Kipling


    Terry

  15. #15
    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    Okay...
    How many rounds constitute "a few"?
    Two Speed-Loaders, a box, three pallets, what?
    There are only TWO kinds of people in this world; those who describe the world as filled with two kinds of people...and those who don't.

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