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Old April 14, 2019, 08:10 AM   #1
dontcatchmany
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110 gr 357 magnum in a 2-2.25 inch snubnose revolver.

I have a Ruger SP101 2.25' and a Kimber K6s 2".

I can and have shot with a fair amount of comfort 125 gr in the Ruger.

However, the Kimber, is not the gun for me in 357 Mag. Old age and arthritis have reduced my "manliness" and the Kimber has pretty much been relegated to 38 Special. Thankfully that has caused me to research and have a fair amount of confidence in several 38 Special loads for SD.

However I am getting ready to order some 110 gr 357 ammo to experiment with in the 2" Kimber and see if the recoil is tolerable.

Do any of you have experience with 110 gr 357 in a snub nose? Recoil is my main concern, but I am sure you folks will point out some thinks I have not though of.

On a side note: I can shoot the lights out with the SP101, but for some reason accuracy with the Kimber eludes me.

Oh, my 38 special rounds for SD have come down to either of the following (with recoil being a high priority):
Underwood 100 gr +p (or non +p) Extreme Defender (this round has proved to be very accurate even in the Kimber.)
Hornady Critical Defense 110 gr +p (or non +p)
Federal HST Micro (also consistently accurate)
Speer Gold Dot Short Barrel.

Oh, if I can not figure out how to shoot the Kimber better I will sell it or give it to my wife (she saw it and liked it while I was getting ready to clean it) and get a 686 plus 2.5". And why I want another handgun or rifle I will never know, but most of you have that affliction also I am sure....lol!

Thanks
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Old April 14, 2019, 09:10 AM   #2
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I'm sure folks don't want to hear this (again) but.....

357 out of a snub is generally a waste for self defense
Unless of course you just have to have tons of flash, blast, and recoil
And love pounding yourself silly trying to get any sort of meaningful practice
Even 38 +P loadings are really more bothersome than they are worth
I know such statements trigger emotions, but facts are facts

For common self defense calibers:
Practice
Placement
Penetration
Always trump the usual touted numbers

I spent over fourty years in law enforcement, plus military service
Let's just say I've seen and done a lot during that time
And I carry 148gr full-wadcutters in my snubs
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Old April 14, 2019, 09:38 AM   #3
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TBM900

What brands(s) of wadcutter? I shot some Underwood 158 gr +p wadcutters yesterday and they did have a tad bit of recoil. Also shot 150 gr Underwood and they were somewhat better. I would have no problem with wadcutters when I find the ones that are good for SD and my old body. Still researching them.

I ordered the 110 gr 357 magnum this am and going to see what my tolerance is for them. I still like the idea of some sort of 357 magnum and I do have a 4" 627 that is great to shoot even with full loads and very accurate. In the past if I really started to complain about the recoil, I would pull out my 627 with 44 magnum...lol. But I mostly keep it in the safe. Ain't a real "man" any more...lol!

Thank you for your military service and your LEO experiences. Vietnam Veteran here and did my fair share of shooting with an M14 there. Many years of shooting and hunting in my back ground.
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Old April 14, 2019, 10:28 AM   #4
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When I had my K6s, I carried Speer .357 135 grain short barrel in it. That is a mild load as .357 goes and was easy for me to control.

As to .38 Special loads, I like the two Hornady 110 grain offerings and the Speer GD 135 +p for short barrels. I haven't tried the HST but it looks good on paper. I have no use for the Underwood bullet that isn't designed to expand.
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Old April 14, 2019, 12:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dontcatchmany View Post
TBM900

What brands(s) of wadcutter? I shot some Underwood 158 gr +p wadcutters yesterday and they did have a tad bit of recoil. Also shot 150 gr Underwood and they were somewhat better. I would have no problem with wadcutters when I find the ones that are good for SD and my old body. Still researching them.

I ordered the 110 gr 357 magnum this am and going to see what my tolerance is for them. I still like the idea of some sort of 357 magnum and I do have a 4" 627 that is great to shoot even with full loads and very accurate. In the past if I really started to complain about the recoil, I would pull out my 627 with 44 magnum...lol. But I mostly keep it in the safe. Ain't a real "man" any more...lol!

Thank you for your military service and your LEO experiences. Vietnam Veteran here and did my fair share of shooting with an M14 there. Many years of shooting and hunting in my back ground.
The Underwood you mentioned is a semi-wadcutter, not a full wadcutter
A typical 148gr WC isn't powdered to high-pressure
Velocity sweet spot is around 700fps

No flash or blast, recoil is insignificant giving ultra fast follow up shots
Accurate projectiles that punch deep cutting holes full torso

Bonus is that you can reload them super cheap and easy for more practice
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Old April 14, 2019, 03:47 PM   #6
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I know exactly how you feel. My thoughts on your problem comes down to do you want this snub to carry and if so , are you willing to carry a heavy steel snub like the EAA 2 inch 357 in magnum Windicater. I have the same problem as you & I rented the Windicator(this was 12 years ago) & fired up to 158 grain 357 in magnum ammo & had no recoil problems. Seeing as you're thinking of 110 grain ammo it would probably feel like shooting 22 ammo.
Just a thought & it will not hurt you to rent one & try it or some other steel snub that has weight to it. One last thing. The Windictator is under $300 but
dont let that fool you. It's well made & is very accurate.
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Old April 14, 2019, 04:37 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Doc Holliday 1950 View Post
Seeing as you're thinking of 110 grain ammo it would probably feel like shooting 22 ammo.
Why do people make absurd statements like this?
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Old April 14, 2019, 05:12 PM   #8
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I used to shoot the WWB 110gr. 357 load in my 640 and sp101 (when I had one). they performed better than the 38s I tried in the same gun with regards to expansion. I think if my memory is right that they chrono'ed at a little over 1,200 fps with my buddy's pact/pac? chrono.
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Old April 14, 2019, 06:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
I'm sure folks don't want to hear this (again) but.....

357 out of a snub is generally a waste for self defense
Unless of course you just have to have tons of flash, blast, and recoil
And love pounding yourself silly trying to get any sort of meaningful practice
Even 38 +P loadings are really more bothersome than they are worth
I know such statements trigger emotions, but facts are facts
Your "facts" are wrong. The 357 magnum adds about 500 fps to any 38 load using the same bullets. Blast and recoil are range issues, not fight issues.

Quote:
For common self defense calibers:
Practice
Placement
Penetration
Always trump the usual touted numbers
Not trump, augment.

Quote:
I spent over fourty years in law enforcement, plus military service
Let's just say I've seen and done a lot during that time
And I carry 148gr full-wadcutters in my snubs
Your experience must be vastly different from mine. I have seen lots of people shot, many with the 38 wadcutter. it would be about the LAST round I would recommend to anyone, especially in a snubby.
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Old April 14, 2019, 06:33 PM   #10
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110 gr 357 magnum in a 2-2.25 inch snubnose revolver.
Recoil is highly subjective.

Bullet selection is important. Remington uses a thin scalloped jacket and the fragment significantly, they are very effective. Winchester and Federal use a thicker jacket and the do not fragment much if any and penetrate deeper.
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Old April 14, 2019, 07:23 PM   #11
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Out of a 2" barrel a 357 will generate 125 to 225 more ft lbs than a 38 Special. Yeah, more recoil and a much bigger fireball. Might even suffer some hearing damage, too.
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Old April 14, 2019, 07:26 PM   #12
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The 357 magnum adds about 500 fps to any 38 load using the same bullets. Blast and recoil are range issues, not fight issues.
For the former: citation required

For the later: lack of proficiency, due to those “range” issues, can rapidly become “fight” issues
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Old April 14, 2019, 09:49 PM   #13
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With all of the SD Loads available today in 38 and 38+P designed especially for Short Barrel Revolvers, why would anyone need to shoot a .357 in a snub for self defense. If you look at the .38 & .357 Testing done at luckygunner.com it looks like to me some of the Short Barrel SD loads actually perform better in the 38 than 357. I'll be the first to agree that gel testing is not an exact science compared to real life situations, but with the luckygunner test everything was tested exactly the same, so you do get a good idea of how bullets compare to one another. Personally I am more confident carrying a .38 designed for short barrel than I am carrying a .357 in a snub. I know the bullet will do its job and the follow up shots if needed will be quicker and more accurate due to less recoil. For self defense no matter what you carry, practice is the key. Placement is the most important thing. A hit with a .22 is much more effective than a miss with a 44 mag.
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Old April 14, 2019, 10:33 PM   #14
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Heavier bullets penetrate better out of short barrels.
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Old April 14, 2019, 11:33 PM   #15
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At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I'm gonna say 9mm would be better for you in a 2 inch small frame revolver than .357 will. I'm not saying sell the Kimber immediately, but you know as well as I do that as time goes on, the worse your arthritis will be. Even if you find a better lower recoil, yet still fairly powerful choice, the question is how long will you be able to shoot it?

A larger frame, but short barrel .357 like the 686 or GP100 7 shots would do you a lot of good.
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Old April 15, 2019, 08:00 AM   #16
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For the former: citation required
Lets just jump right to the top of the pile. In general terms this remains somewhat constant across the board. There are some variations but that is to be expected. Do your own research if you don't like my answer.


https://www.underwoodammo.com/collec...18785727053881

https://www.underwoodammo.com/collec...18785726890041

Quote:
For the later: lack of proficiency, due to those “range” issues, can rapidly become “fight” issues
If you lack proficiency with your carry gun you have absolutely no business carrying it. If you are that distracted by shooting your carry gun you need to shoot more.
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Old April 15, 2019, 08:02 AM   #17
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Out of a 2" barrel a 357 will generate 125 to 225 more ft lbs than a 38 Special. Yeah, more recoil and a much bigger fireball. Might even suffer some hearing damage, too.
It pretty much double the energy.
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Old April 15, 2019, 08:08 AM   #18
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With all of the SD Loads available today in 38 and 38+P designed especially for Short Barrel Revolvers, why would anyone need to shoot a .357 in a snub for self defense.
Because it is much more effective.

Quote:
If you look at the .38 & .357 Testing done at luckygunner.com it looks like to me some of the Short Barrel SD loads actually perform better in the 38 than 357.
In gel.

Quote:
I'll be the first to agree that gel testing is not an exact science compared to real life situations, but with the luckygunner test everything was tested exactly the same, so you do get a good idea of how bullets compare to one another.
That makes it another tool.

Quote:
Personally I am more confident carrying a .38 designed for short barrel than I am carrying a .357 in a snub. I know the bullet will do its job and the follow up shots if needed will be quicker and more accurate due to less recoil.
That has to do with skill level, not effectiveness. My split times with magnums are virtually identical to my split times with 38 specials when fired from the same gun. Have you shot in competition or on the clock so you actually have an idea?

Quote:
For self defense no matter what you carry, practice is the key. Placement is the most important thing. A hit with a .22 is much more effective than a miss with a 44 mag.
Who said anything about missing? Again, that is a matter of skill not platform. Anyone can shoot a 22 good.
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Old April 15, 2019, 09:41 AM   #19
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Don't worry about the manliness. I generally find .357 magnum unpleasant to shoot in smaller guns. So I tended to prefer .38 special in the types of revolvers I could reliably carry. Then I got into .327 Federal. It gives me more power than .38 special but without too big an increase in felt recoil. I don't have to worry so much about reliable expansion and I get an extra round.

If that wasn't an option, I'd probably still be carrying .38 special on revolver days. Contrary to what some people say, it generally isn't as powerful as 9mm or .357 magnum in any length barrel. Like .380 acp, the .38 special is right at the cusp of what a lot of people call "marginal" these days. Either could work. Either could save your life. I just feel better with a little more oomph.

That said, yes. Shot placement will always be the most important thing in a defensive encounter. In a vital area, the difference between calibers shrinks a lot. The problem is that you might not always have the opportunity. Defensive encounters can be messy. You might be entangled with an assailant. Your only hope might be a point-blank shot into the thigh, hip, shoulder, guts, etc. In those cases, more power tends to destroy more stuff and that's a good thing.
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Old April 15, 2019, 05:31 PM   #20
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Like .380 acp, the .38 special is right at the cusp of what a lot of people call "marginal" these days. Either could work. Either could save your life. I just feel better with a little more oomph.
Yep, it was considered marginal in the 1920's too which is why we have the 38-44 and the 357 magnum.

Quote:
That said, yes. Shot placement will always be the most important thing in a defensive encounter. In a vital area, the difference between calibers shrinks a lot
.

I always see this quote when rationalizing less powerful carry guns. What is never considered is making the same hits with a more powerful gun is better.

Quote:
The problem is that you might not always have the opportunity. Defensive encounters can be messy. You might be entangled with an assailant. Your only hope might be a point-blank shot into the thigh, hip, shoulder, guts, etc. In those cases, more power tends to destroy more stuff and that's a good thing.
Its always a good thing.
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Old April 15, 2019, 07:43 PM   #21
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With all of the SD Loads available today in 38 and 38+P designed especially for Short Barrel Revolvers, why would anyone need to shoot a .357 in a snub for self defense.

Quote:
Because it is much more effective.
Please tell me where you find the need for more effectiveness from the .38 Special +P loads in the below pic. The middle bullet was fired at 845fps, while the right hand bullet was fired at 940fps. Both came out of a 2.5" barreled S&W.

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Old April 15, 2019, 08:00 PM   #22
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Please tell me where you find the need for more effectiveness from the .38 Special +P loads in the below pic.
Just looking at an expanded lead bullet is extremely over simplistic. What does this one tell you?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_20161201_075205943.jpg (99.1 KB, 29 views)
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Old April 15, 2019, 08:21 PM   #23
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Hmm, 158gr lead hollowpoint at about 900fps, fully expanded and staying together. Certainly not going to be stopped by a dime.

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Old April 15, 2019, 08:36 PM   #24
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Hmm, 158gr lead hollowpoint at about 900fps, fully expanded and staying together. Certainly not going to be stopped by a dime.
It was not stopped by the quarter, it is there as a size comparison. What load data are you using to get 900 fps from a 158 grain bullet fired from a 38 special with a @" barrel?
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Old April 15, 2019, 08:55 PM   #25
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Nanuk,

The middle bullet load was 6.4gr of AA#5 with a standard primer for 845fps. And the right hand bullet load was 7.0gr of HS-6 with a magnum primer for 940fps. The bullets were cast by me using a high tin, low antimony alloy. The commercial casters make their bullets too hard simply because antimony is cheap and tin is expensive. I estimate the BHN of these bullets to be ~8.

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