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Old July 18, 2013, 04:56 PM   #1
kayakfisher
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38 long colt/38 special/357

Thinking about buying lever action rifle I know 38 special and 357 can be shot in same gun what about 38 long colt
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Old July 18, 2013, 06:06 PM   #2
Hawg
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You might have feeding problems with the Long Colt since its about 1/16" shorter than the special. Some magnums don't like to feed specials.
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Old July 18, 2013, 06:32 PM   #3
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Uh-huh...

... listen to Hawg... he does have the poop on this stuff.



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Old July 18, 2013, 09:31 PM   #4
4V50 Gary
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Just a thought....

I wonder if the carrier may be modified for a shorter cartridge? Say a machine screw drilled into carrier to serve as shell shop. It has to be high enough to stop the rearward travel of a shell coming out of the magazine tube and short enough such that when the carrier is raised, the bolt doesn't strike and jam against it.
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Old July 19, 2013, 07:06 AM   #5
Hawg
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That might work if it doesn't weaken the carrier too much. I had a 94 Marlin in 44 mag that fed magnum rounds fine but specials jammed the nose into the top of the chamber.
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Old July 19, 2013, 01:27 PM   #6
leo96150
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The rifle doesn't care what brass it is fed, only the cartridge overall length (OAL). If you can load .38 spec or .38 S&W to an OAL that it will feed then great. Different manufacturers make small changes to the original Winchester designs that make big differences in what they will feed. The Winchester '66 and '73 guns seem to be the most forgiving due to the elevator system versus an angled ramp.
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Old July 19, 2013, 02:03 PM   #7
Hawg
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Quote:
If you can load .38 spec or .38 S&W to an OAL that it will feed then great.
You'd have a helluva time loading a .38 S&W to .357 magnum length. That would be one loooong bullet. But yeah loading to magnum length would fix feeding problems.
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Old July 19, 2013, 10:52 PM   #8
James K
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You couldn't get .38 S&W to fit in a .357 Magnum chamber anyhow.

The original guns will feed only cartridges of a specific overall length, but some modern versions will accept .38 Special and .357 interchangeably. I don't know of any that will also take .38 Long or .38 Short Colt.

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Old July 20, 2013, 07:15 AM   #9
bedbugbilly
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So . . . clear something up for me . . . I understand what you're saying about cartridge length and feeding on these CF and why the shorter cartridge might/could be a problem.

In talking lever guns . . . . what is different in the larger caliber guns as opposed to a .22 rimfire lever gun that allows the .22 (I'll use a Henry as a example) to feed the different length cartridges . .. i.e. .22 short, long and long rifle?

I can easily understand what Hawg is talking about in regards to the shorter cartridge feeding too high and catching the slug on the chamber . . . but why doesn't that happen or what is different in the .22 rim fires that allows the different length cartridges to feed without a problem?

Thanks.
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Old July 20, 2013, 09:43 AM   #10
Hawg
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The .38 S&W is also too fat to chamber The Long Colt is the same size as the special just shorter.

I think the difference with the .22's is the carrier design. A lot of older .22's would chamber all three lengths with no problems. They redesigned most of them to only take LR sometime in the 60's if I'm not mistaken. I think the reason for that was because the carbon ring left by shorts wouldn't allow the longer cartridges to chamber. Some centerfires like the Winchester 94 were designed for rifle cartridges and the action itself is too long to reliably feed pistol length cartridges. Some do, most don't. You have to be particular how you work the actions.
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