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Old November 3, 2022, 04:51 PM   #1
oldbear1950
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32 h r mag

what do ya'll think of the 32 h r mag, either as a backup piece, or a gun for the wife who is sensitive to recoil?
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Old November 3, 2022, 05:54 PM   #2
hammie
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I hand load to two levels. A 115 grain lead bullet at about 850 ft/sec is one level and the other level is a 100 grain jacketed at a much higher velocity using H110 or 2400 powders. I'm not going to give the loads or velocity for the top tier, but if you don't handload, Buffalo Bore has a +P loading which launches a 100 grain bullet at around 1200 ft/sec from shorter barrels. I would not use the higher velocity loads in the H&R revolvers, or the small frame (undercover size) charter arms revolvers. For the larger charter arms bulldog size frame, I would probably ask charter arms about the use of the buffalo bore ammunition.

The lower level loads are perfect for the recoil sensitive shooter, or plinking, or as a trail gun. One person on this forum characterizes the .32 H&R as a reloadable .22 rimfire and I agree with that characterization for the plinking level loads. As a defensive cartridge, I occasionally rotate my "nightstand" gun, and my .32 H&R, Ruger SP-101 sometimes gets a turn. With the heavier loads, I do not feel helpless and I sleep soundly.

As for what I think of the cartridge: I understand the power constraints for the H&R revolvers, but I wish the cartridge was a little more powerful but less powerful than a .327 federal.

Last edited by hammie; November 3, 2022 at 06:04 PM.
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Old November 3, 2022, 07:23 PM   #3
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I agree with hammie that it would be nice if .32 HR Mag had a bit more power at the max loading, but not anywhere near 45k PSI like .327, however upping the power too much means that the. 32 wouldn't be able to go into any aluminum framed snubs like .38 and .22 can. At that point if the cartridge must go into a steel frame revolver it may as well be .327 and not a hot hot .32 HR Mag.

Whatever the case, .32 Mag today is still an improvement over .32 S&W Long, proper bullets will expand and penetrate in .32 HR Mag, plus the recoil is less than .38 and the 6th round is there if needed.

I would not feel unarmed with a .32 Mag, so as a backup it is superb and for low recoil all the .32 revolvers excell at that.
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Old November 4, 2022, 07:53 AM   #4
ViperR
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I agree on how the H&R could be a little stouter. I have a .327 and it's punishing on me and I bet the revolver too. So, I use 327 brass and split the difference between H&R max and 327 min for my reloads. Unique powder and standard primers.
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Old November 5, 2022, 05:21 PM   #5
Super Sneaky Steve
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32 Mag has plenty of power and will expand perfectly if you use the right bullet and load. This load was shot out of a titanium J-frame with a 2" barrel.





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Old November 5, 2022, 07:27 PM   #6
reteach
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There is a similar thread going on over in the General Discussion area. Look for "arthritis and shooting." There is some talk there about .32 H&R for old, arthritic hands or recoil sensitive folks. With the right ammo, .32 H&R looks like it can be an effective defensive round. Lucky Gunner has done a lot of ammo testing and the results for .32 H&R are here:

https://www.luckygunner.com/labs/poc...sults/#32HRMag

Consistently good penetration even from shorter barrels. Expansion is so-so. I daily carry a Ruger LCRX .327 Mag and load it with .32 H&R. Hornady FTX has the best expansion in that comparison, but it's very hard to get right now. Black Hills is pretty good. Both of them are easy on my hands and I can shoot them well.
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Old November 5, 2022, 10:34 PM   #7
The Happy kaboomer
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I have a Ruger SS in 32 mag. All it get is my cast bullets. It's a fun plinker.
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Old November 6, 2022, 06:50 PM   #8
ViperR
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Het SSS, I see your point and read many articles on the 32HR results. I just like a little more zippy at the range. I wouldn't carry any of my reloads of course. Just factory.
I was just experimenting with a H&R load in a Fed case to bring it up to a H&R +P level close to a 38 Special +P spec.
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Old November 6, 2022, 11:30 PM   #9
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There is a reason I call my .32 H&R Magnum revolvers my reloadable .22. I mostly load the light 78gr RN to .22LR velocities (tested over the chronograph). Recoil is close to the o' .22LR. If you can handle a .22 you can handle the .32. As for carry, I load what I shoot, and shoot what I load. Simple as that.
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Old November 7, 2022, 10:53 AM   #10
FrankenMauser
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Quote:
I agree with hammie that it would be nice if .32 HR Mag had a bit more power at the max loading, but not anywhere near 45k PSI like .327
It is fine.
Does the job well enough as-is.

My standard load for a jacketed bullet propels an 85 gr XTP at more than 1,300 fps and is not a max load.
.327 Federal needs another ~20k psi to beat that by only 200 fps in the same revolvers.

If you want "more power" without getting the angry bark of .327 or .357, I've got a secret to tell you.

.44 Special, .44 Mag, and .480 Ruger do it in their sleep, and can be found over there ---->
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Old November 7, 2022, 03:01 PM   #11
rclark
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I agree. My little .32 H&R Magnum 78gr lead bullets are zipping out at ~1100fps. Nuff to get the job done for intended use. Move up to .44 Special/.44Mag, .45 Colt if you want more power without the 'bark' of the .327 or .357.
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Old November 7, 2022, 11:40 PM   #12
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I always liked .32 H&R Magnum versus vanilla .38 special but that was back in the day.

Now I prefer .327 Federal to .38+p or .357 magnum in the kinds of revolvers I'd carry around town.

The lighter 85-grain loads in .327 Federal are gentle enough to use in the LCR. They are louder and a little more crisp in recoil than .32 H&R Magnum but definitely reasonable. (I say that as someone with both arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome.) They are also much more satisfying on water jugs, November pumpkins, etc. Fun aside, that inspires a lot more faith in their defensive potential.
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