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Old March 20, 2013, 04:02 PM   #26
Sevens
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I have 4 revolvers in .357 Mag that I shoot regularly, and one semi-auto in .357 Mag. I shoot a lot of both .357 Mag and .38 Special in all of them.

I notice a tiny little bit of sludge when I push in a .357 after a bunch of .38, but it's just that FIRST chambering AFTER the run of .38 where I can feel it -- at all. And one cylinderful of ammo and it's ancient history.

I've heard and read in forums for Y-E-A-R-S about the concern over shooting a lot of .38 in a .357 and having to deal with the side effects of the shorter round. I just have NOT had experiences that has made that complaint valid.

I'm sure everyone has their own experiences, but it's always been much ado about absolutely nothing in my 25 years of handgunning. I do tend to run plated and jacketed rather than lead in both .38 and .357 and I'm quite sure that's part of the equation, and you'd likely find more resistance with lead residue.

In the Coonan, I'll run a couple HUNDRED rounds of .38 with the included lighter 10-lb spring and then switch to full bore .357 Mag and I -CAN- feel a slight hitch when I go to chamber that first round, but it burns or blows out any of the scuzz and just like the Coonan always does, it eats through all the ammo I feed it without failures of any sort.

Personally, I file this "concern" under "duly noted", where I always keep it in mind as something to look for, but haven't ever been bothered by it, and I'm talking easily more than 10,000 rounds of ammo over a couple decades -- and the last 5 years of that has been documented with hard, real numbers.

As to the accuracy difference -- the only thing I can seem to tell in difference is that point of aim can be different due to the radical difference in recoil. I do love very much shooting both, and I shoot a lot of .357 Magnum. It's not that I'm a tough guy who likes taking a beating...it's more that my guns tend to be on the larger and heavier side and they eat up a lot of the recoil. The Coonan -LOVES- to be pushed hard and demands it from the ammo.
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Old March 22, 2013, 07:07 AM   #27
rrruger
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I shoot a GP100 and I find that the .38 special and the .357 are equally accurate at ten yards. The .38 groups are an inch or so higher but the groups are just as tight. I am told that this is because the .38 traveling at 750 Feet/sec doesn't clear the barrel before the recoil kicks in. The .357 is out the barrel before the gun can buck. Bottom line here is that either load in the GP is more accurate than I can shoot. I have been shooting 125 hollow point +P from Walmart, but I too will start hand loading this summer so there will be more .357's in my future. Cheap...and proud of it!
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Old March 22, 2013, 11:00 AM   #28
rclark
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Quote:
since I do intend on getting into reloading this summer - would it be doable to just reload .38spcl loads into .357 brass and avoid the problem entirely?
Get's my vote. I see no need to even have .38 Spec brass around. The whole point of reloading is to 'taylor' the load to what you want/need to shoot. Across the board from .357 to .45 Colt, I like to keep my loads under 1100fps. Most are around 900-1000fps. Haven't bought a factory load since around 1980 when I didn't know any better....
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A clinger. When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns. Single Action .45 Colt (Sometimes improperly referred to by its alias as the .45 'Long' Colt or .45LC). Don't leave home without it. Ok.... the .44Spec is growing on me ... but the .45 Colt is still king.
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Old March 22, 2013, 01:11 PM   #29
roaddog28
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Quote:
If caliber selection (.38 vs. .357 Magnum) is of no consequence to you, then may I suggest you find one of two older target revolvers, the S&W K-38 Masterpiece (Model 14) or a Colt Officers Model Match. Both guns are of a bygone era when the .38 Revolver ruled the firing line. Both are built for .38 Special ammunition, that is, they are not heavy nor bulky pieces, and lack the heavy lugged basrrels stc. Both have fine adjustable target sights. Fired with .38 Special wadcutter target ammunition, they are wonderfully accurate, pleasant shooting, and emit that pride of ownership.

In short, they are nice to shoot and nice to own.

Bob Wright
I have too agree with Bob on this. If a person is looking for a premier target revolver a S&W K-38 Masterpiece or the Colt Officers Model Match are the best I have ever seen and handled. I you insist on a 357 magnum, I once had a S&W model 19-4 6 inch that almost equal the model 14. I used mostly 38 specials but did run light load 357 magnums in the revolver. Without a doubt this revolver was better than me.

The revolvers Bob and I mentioned are out there. Be patience, and if you can find one of these, you can get endless hours of shooting pleasure.
Good luck,
Howard
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Old March 22, 2013, 08:56 PM   #30
VancMike
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I really want a prime 38-44. But, lacking the "authorization" to spend $3,000+, I found a very nice 4-screw Mdl 27-2 and a Mdl 14, mentioned above.

Makes a nice combo, I think....and the two of them were about the same as one 38-44....
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Old March 24, 2013, 10:27 AM   #31
Peter M. Eick
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Here are 31 38/44's of various types. Not one of them cost $3,000. Most of them costs under $1000 and many costs less than $500. Not even my Registered Magnum costs $3000.

Not sure where you are getting your dollar costs from but maybe it is just a local thing.

I would say that while the 38/44 is a great gun and I obviously love them, for raw accuracy, few of what I have can compare in accuracy to my Python with decent 357 handloads.
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Old March 24, 2013, 07:43 PM   #32
VancMike
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OK, I'm impressed. Actually, I'm in awe.

And I'll keep looking....
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Old April 11, 2013, 08:10 PM   #33
bamacisa
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I mostly fire 38's in my 357 revolvers. In always clean my guns after shooting them, so it is a non issue. For plinking and target practice 38'work fine.
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Old April 12, 2013, 08:43 AM   #34
RKG
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One can analyze the OP's question two ways:

From a theoretical perspective, there is reason to conclude that shooting a .38 Special target load in a revolver chambered for .357 Magnum should display some degradation in machine accuracy. How much is uncertain.

From an experiential perspective: for many years I shot .38 target loads (2.7 grains of Bullseye pushing an H&G #51 button-nose wadcutter) out of a .357 Magnum chambered S&W revolver in the Centerfire stage of the National Gallery matches, achieving low 290s on a regular basis.

Angels on the head of a pin.
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Old April 12, 2013, 12:39 PM   #35
Jayhawkhuntclub
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Quote:
There are few things in the shooting world more pleasurable to spend an afternoon with than a K-frame .38Spl.
+1
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Old April 13, 2013, 09:36 PM   #36
Deja vu
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My S&W 640 is much more fun wand accurate with 38s. My Coonan Classic is more fun and accurate with 357 magnums. My Marlin also likes 357 magnums.
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Shot placement is everything! I would rather take a round of 50BMG to the foot than a 22short to the base of the skull.

all 25 of my guns are 45/70 govt, 357 mag, 22 or 12 ga... I believe in keeping it simple
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Old April 13, 2013, 11:18 PM   #37
orionengnr
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Peter--Do you have a son?
How would you like to adopt one?

I'm up to date on my vaccinations, I've outgrown/outlived most of my bad habits, don't eat much and have my own place.

If I outlive you, you will go to your reward knowing your handguns will be loved and well treated.

We agree on things like 10mm and .45LC. I'm also a handloader, and I suspect we'd find a it to agree on politically, too.

We're even in the same state, though far enough apart that those annoying "drop-in" visits would not be an issue.

Give it some thought, and get back to me.
Best, Rich North of DFW
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Old April 14, 2013, 09:10 AM   #38
Peter M. Eick
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Rich,

Got a family already but thanks for the offer. That picture is now 3 behind and I will make it 5 behind before the end of the week. It is an addiction and I see where I can expand and fill in my collection. If I head your way, I will PM you and maybe we can hit the range somewhere.
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