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I have read many post about .38+P vs. .357 Mag. as defensive options in airweight revolver's, and it seems most folks prefer to load with the .38+P, because you can (without a doubt) get off 2 or 3 follow up shots faster, however, "what if" there were 2 or three BG's?, if it potentially may take 2 or 3 shots to put down ea. BG you would be in big trouble. I realize the Airweight (got one 360 w/3 1/8" brl.) with a .357 mag. load gives a nasty kick, and it ain't no range gun, but, even though your follow up shots are slower, 1 well placed shot should stop a BG in his tracks versus 2 or 3 well placed shots from a .38+P load. I just feel more comfortable with the bigger load. I always shoot 50-100 rounds of .38 for target and then the last 5 shots are .357 mag. 125gr., I shoot about 1-2" further away from center than with the .38.

Where am I going wrong?
 

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Where am I going wrong?
Well imho your first step down that road is the assumption that any handgun will stop anyone with one shot. Carry and load what you are comfortable with , just dont factor one shot stops into that comfort factor .
 

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I have a Taurus 2" .357 which weighs about 24 ounces loaded.

It's comfortable to shoot with full 158gr .357 loads.

I also have a 14 ounce Kel-tec 9mm.
I need a LOT more practice to shoot it well.

Life is a series of Trade-offs :smilez:
 

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Concetrate more on what you can shoot well. A .357 can be downloaded to .38's , while a .38 can not be uploaded. Either way, you only get 5 , so make em count.
 

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+1 to Rocky's comments....

...have you tried firing some .357 Mag. 110 grain JHP loads? Lighter kicking than the 125 grain JHPs.
 

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You might want to try DPX from Corbon. In my 340PD, the 110 grain 38+P recoils less than any +P I've tried and their 125 grain 357 DPX is a mild load compared to other 357's in such a light gun. After much thought and experimenting, the first 2 rounds in mine are the 38+P and the next 3 are the 357. I know the first 2 can be fired quickly on target and adrenalin will absorb the 357's slightly greater recoil if they are necessary. By the way, I never tried 110 grain 357's since Smith & Wesson states right on the barrel to use a minimum bullet weight of 120 grains due to possible bullet pull. In phone conversations with Smith & Wesson, they state the minimum bullet weight applies ONLY to 357 magnum and NOT to 38 special.
 

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I think you should also chrony the .38 and .357 loads you are thinking about using. A lot of people are suprised to find out that in 2" barrels, the .357 doesn't give you near as much of an advantage as you think.
 
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