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Old September 10, 2017, 11:00 PM   #26
James K
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For handgun target shooting, the ideal round is one that will give the minimum recoil combined with good accuracy, and the capability for reloading. The .38 Special was, for many years, the most popular target round in the US, primarily because it was the standard police cartridge. But in Europe, the police early on began to use auto pistols, which, by their nature, require a certain power level. So the European answer was to "repurpose" the .32 S&W Long, a low-recoil cartridge that still would function an auto pistol and could be reloaded. Some very good loads and some excellent pistols were developed in Europe for that sport, and most are allowed in U.S. centerfire target shooting, something a few canny shooters have used to their advantage.

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Old September 12, 2017, 12:22 AM   #27
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Few Americans seem interested in precision target shooting so there is little interest in a high-end target pistol.
Over the last 40 some years, traditional Bullseye shooting has lost popularity to "combat" style shooting matches, in the US.

The .32 S&W is one of, if not THE lowest power centerfire rounds out there. Americans like accuracy but they like accuracy with useful power more.

Europeans are much more heavily restricted by law, and in some places, the only pistol one can own is a target pistol, which is kept stored at the range, or a police station...

Small wonder they have a stronger interest in what they can have, over what they cannot.
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Old September 12, 2017, 12:58 AM   #28
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Power is not a factor in formal target shooting; ranges are short and the only thing that the bullet must penetrate is a piece of paper. Most rules, though, do distinguish between rimfire (.22) and and center fire due to the difference in handling recoil. And it is there that the .32 Long shines. Loaded with wadcutter bullets, it is an outstanding target round, as accurate as the .38 Special and with less recoil and noise.

While European laws have restricted handgun possession in general, they had less to do with the choice of .32 Long as a target round than did its other characteristics.

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Old September 12, 2017, 07:35 AM   #29
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Power is not a factor in formal target shooting; ranges are short and the only thing that the bullet must penetrate is a piece of paper
Olympic pistol is 25 and 50 meters.
IMHO - that's about as formal as it gets.

Organized silhouette matches extend out to 250 meters & the amount of raw power needed to topple the steel targets is considerable.

Even Bullseye has 25 and 50 yard matches.
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Old September 12, 2017, 10:09 PM   #30
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I don't consider 50 meters or 50 yards as long range. I admit I was not aware of European pistol shooting at 250 meters; that is fantastic. Do you know what group sizes they get?.

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Old September 14, 2017, 02:55 AM   #31
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LOL!

You don't consider 50 yards or meters as long range!!!!

yeah ok.....if you say so...
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Old September 14, 2017, 05:58 AM   #32
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Fifty yards is long range considering that virtually all action type pistol competitions are shot at distances considerably shorter than that.
"Even Bullseye has...50 yard matches".....Even??? Most outdoor Bullseye matches are shot with the Slow fire targets at fifty yards.
There are few pistol competitions that go beyond 50 yards. Pistol Silhouette is one. In both NRA Silhouette and IHMSA competitions, the maximum distance shot is at Rams at 200 yards.

The advantage of the 32 S&W LONG is minimal recoil. The disadvantage is that the little wadcutters tend to instability at the long line targets (50 yards). European ISSF CF matches are shot at 25 meters. The only 50 meter matches are Precison Pistol (Aka Free Pistol) which is a rimfire competition.
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Old September 14, 2017, 06:03 AM   #33
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250 meter's target's with a 32 long? Wow! I have a mod 16 Smith in 32 long and if I had to get rid of all my handguns but one the one I'd keep would be the 32 long. I'm not a big time handgun shooter and other than self defense prefer DA revolver's. I do have a 22 auto, a High standard HD Military I love and it can shoot right alongside my 32 long. But ir require's factory ammo, my 32 shoot's my cast bullet's very well. Come to think of it, I have never fired a factory round from it.

But I doubt we'll ever see it get popular again. Shoot, a lot of people believe they need a 40 cal min for everything. I read of the use of people's pistol for pretty much self defense only, that would include self defense from a bear while your hunting sage rat's! Throw down the rifle and get out your 44 mag! That always tickles me!

My son has several handguns mostly semi auto for self defense. started with 357 MAG and has never fired a 38 in it and never a cast. Then needed an auto for carry so got a Glock in 9mm. That wore out fast enough and he just had to have a new Glock in 40 cal. That's about run the course now and he's looking for a 50 cal I think it is? It's really funny watching these things develop. I think the thing that does this is advertising! If the firearms industry told us the 32 had some kind of magic that would take Godzilla out with one shot, people would rush out to get it! Then when Godzilla attacked, they would throw down their 460 Weatherby and pull out their 32 long! I'm sorry, I find so much of this stuff amusing!
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Old September 14, 2017, 06:24 AM   #34
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I am pretty sure that even the hottest .32 S&W loads would be tumbling long before 250 meters.
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Old September 14, 2017, 11:37 AM   #35
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"...to have a 32 target gun made..." You'd be daft. Lots of .32 Longs around. Cheap they ain't though. Walthers and the like are 4 figure target pistols and use WC's. The .32 ACP is not suitable for target shooting though.
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Old September 14, 2017, 12:18 PM   #36
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Come on, guys, I don't think Hal meant he was shooting IHMSA with a .32. Although .32-20 was popular in Hunter Pistol at 100 metres.

darkgael confirms what I have read. .32 is a fine 25 metre round, not so hot at 50 yards. Not that you cannot find somebody who does well with it.
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