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.38 Special in Snub-Nosed Revolver

easttex

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Twu dat, and I have both. But in my front pocket, a Glock looks like a glock. My SW airweight (+P rated) doesn't look like anything. No imprint. I don't even remember I'm carrying it..

I'd rather have the Glock in a fight, but if concealment is the goal, then the S&W is better than my Keltec P32

View attachment 381746
For this reason I am considering a S&W 637.
 

Delta-3

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Pretty much any 38 special bullet will be effective (even ball but I won't recommend it). In my 638 I run 110's, 125 HP & soft nose (it has a wide front) & 158 LSWC-HP. As has been said, get as close as possible then make holes in the chest cavity or the noggin & the bullet will do the rest.
 

goon

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I don’t like wadcutters if you’re planning to reload. They’re probably effective enough as a defense load, but try lining them up with a speedloader or stripping them out of a speed strip. More likely to fumble a reload with them.
 

Wildcat

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I don’t like wadcutters if you’re planning to reload. They’re probably effective enough as a defense load, but try lining them up with a speedloader or stripping them out of a speed strip. More likely to fumble a reload with them.
Start with the large-meplat/sharp-shoulder bullets in the cylinder.
Reload with bullets that find the chambers easier; like an FTX bullet.

Also, do enough reloads to know how long it really takes with a J-frame and your equipment.
I always load mine using a speedloader (rather than loose rounds). I found that I should grind a decent radius on the back side of the loaders to help clear the grips.

1707176100136.png
 

goon

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Start with the large-meplat/sharp-shoulder bullets in the cylinder.
Reload with bullets that find the chambers easier; like an FTX bullet.

Also, do enough reloads to know how long it really takes with a J-frame and your equipment.
I always load mine using a speedloader (rather than loose rounds). I found that I should grind a decent radius on the back side of the loaders to help clear the grips.

View attachment 381926
I wasn’t clear: I have reloaded a lot of wadcutters, but as a defensive load I wouldn’t use them. Like you say, something with a smooth transition or smaller meplat that slides into the chambers easier is what you need unless you’re just carrying without a reload. Shooting an attacker 5 times is still pretty bad for him.
 

Colts4me

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Just my point of view, round nose bullets at 750 fps just rip the flesh as it penetrates. Wadcutters cut a hole so the person will bleed out faster. It takes low blood pressure to stop the fight if you don't hit the central nervous system. I want leaking holes in what ever body I have to shoot, not ones sealed over by fat because the round just ripped a hole.
 

1911Ron

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I wasn’t clear: I have reloaded a lot of wadcutters, but as a defensive load I wouldn’t use them. Like you say, something with a smooth transition or smaller meplat that slides into the chambers easier is what you need unless you’re just carrying without a reload. Shooting an attacker 5 times is still pretty bad for him.
Elmer Keith addressed the problem with the SWC bullet , easier reloading a revolver and could function in a semi auto.
 

goon

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Just my point of view, round nose bullets at 750 fps just rip the flesh as it penetrates. Wadcutters cut a hole so the person will bleed out faster. It takes low blood pressure to stop the fight if you don't hit the central nervous system. I want leaking holes in what ever body I have to shoot, not ones sealed over by fat because the round just ripped a hole.

A LSWC-HP is still available from Buffalo Bore, Underwood, and Remington to start with and maybe others. There’s also the Speer 135 grain GDHP designed to expand in short barrels. I find it manageable in a J Frame. True some loads are pricey, but some factory 148 grain wadcutters are also $50/box anymore.
 

Colts4me

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A LSWC-HP is still available from Buffalo Bore, Underwood, and Remington to start with and maybe others. There’s also the Speer 135 grain GDHP designed to expand in short barrels. I find it manageable in a J Frame. True some loads are pricey, but some factory 148 grain wadcutters are also $50/box anymore.
Just my opinion again. Hollow point get filled up with fabric and turns them into round nose bullets. Wad cutters cut a hole, a perfect hole. I load my own wadcutters to practice and practice will be the deciding factor.

Yep I could load my own gold dots too at 28 cents a bullet but 8 cents for wadcutters gives me more practice. Just my thinking and it doesn't make it right or the best.
 

goon

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One positive for 148 grain wadcutters is they generally shoot to the point of aim out to 20 or 25 yards. Even at closer distances, some of the lighter bullets might shoot a little low. Not a huge crisis for the distance you’d use a snub nose at, but it does inspire confidence when you can place rounds right to point of aim.
 

skeeterbay

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I used to load a 148gr Hollow Base wadcutter backwards...

Now I load a 110gr HP as fast as pressure allows...

Forrest
I always felt comfortable carrying double ended or hollow base wad cutters in a back up gun. I never loaded the hollow base backwards but I worked with one or two old border patrolmen that were fond of loading their back up that way.
 

Pluribus

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I’ve heard it hurts hella bad. Then you die a few seconds later.
I can vouch for the it hurts a hell of a lot. I wasn’t shot in the lung however, in September 1992 I suffered a complete spontaneous pneumothorax of the left lung when my left lung just completely blew out as I was driving down the road. I saw stars, I had complete tunnel vision with the most god-awful pain I’ve ever felt in my life and, I thought I was having a big one. Tears involuntarily came to my eyes and ran down my cheek in torrents it hurts so bad and I was gasping for breath the whole time fearing I was about to lose consciousness. It was all I could do to pull over into a parking lot without crashing. I’ve experienced intense fear before but, it was the first time I ever had such an intense fear for my life at that moment. I was quite certain I was about to die right there in the parking lot of the Long John Silver‘s parking lot I pulled into. Pre-cell phone days and, after sitting there for close to 15 minutes, I actually managed to drive the four blocks home (I was on my way to work) before calling my doctor at his home at midnight. The wife then drove me to his office which was about a five minute drive away, he takes x-rays then, tells my wife to drive me to the ER because what looked like a little bag of grapes where my left lung should’ve been was my completely collapsed lung, all shriveled up. It still felt like the proverbial sledgehammer. I can only imagine that a bullet perforation along with that same feeling of collapse be multiplied from what I felt that night. So yeah, poke a hole in the lung and, especially if it collapses, the intended recipient is going to be experiencing a lot of damn pain. A lot of g!dd!mn pain. A lot of f!cking pain. So much g!dd!mn f!cking pain he’s not gonna have much ambition at that point to further hurt you.

Good thing I still had one lung working at the time otherwise, I wouldn’t be telling you my story being that I was alone at the time. The doctor was amazed that I drove home so the wife could call him instead of going straight to an ER which was even further away. Oh well, I lived and I learned.
 

Pluribus

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Damn, dude. I read that epic tale the second time in Quint's voice.

That’s funny, another voice hadn’t occurred to me. Anyway, end of digression. No matter what flavor of bullet or bullet type one pokes a hole in the thoracic cavity with, it’s gonna hurt them a lot unless they’re so major league doped up on whatever, I suppose. If it’s a lung collapse along with the hole though, they’re gonna be busy gasping for breath no matter how doped up they are. It could be a .22 or, bunch of .22s or, just one of about any other caliber big or small, it’s gonna hurt a lot.
 

SWOHFAL

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I can vouch for the it hurts a hell of a lot. I wasn’t shot in the lung however, in September 1992 I suffered a complete spontaneous pneumothorax of the left lung when my left lung just completely blew out as I was driving down the road. I saw stars, I had complete tunnel vision with the most god-awful pain I’ve ever felt in my life and, I thought I was having a big one. Tears involuntarily came to my eyes and ran down my cheek in torrents it hurts so bad and I was gasping for breath the whole time fearing I was about to lose consciousness. It was all I could do to pull over into a parking lot without crashing. I’ve experienced intense fear before but, it was the first time I ever had such an intense fear for my life at that moment. I was quite certain I was about to die right there in the parking lot of the Long John Silver‘s parking lot I pulled into. Pre-cell phone days and, after sitting there for close to 15 minutes, I actually managed to drive the four blocks home (I was on my way to work) before calling my doctor at his home at midnight. The wife then drove me to his office which was about a five minute drive away, he takes x-rays then, tells my wife to drive me to the ER because what looked like a little bag of grapes where my left lung should’ve been was my completely collapsed lung, all shriveled up. It still felt like the proverbial sledgehammer. I can only imagine that a bullet perforation along with that same feeling of collapse be multiplied from what I felt that night. So yeah, poke a hole in the lung and, especially if it collapses, the intended recipient is going to be experiencing a lot of damn pain. A lot of g!dd!mn pain. A lot of f!cking pain. So much g!dd!mn f!cking pain he’s not gonna have much ambition at that point to further hurt you.

Good thing I still had one lung working at the time otherwise, I wouldn’t be telling you my story being that I was alone at the time. The doctor was amazed that I drove home so the wife could call him instead of going straight to an ER which was even further away. Oh well, I lived and I learned.
Are you built tall and lean? Folks with that frame are most likely to get a spontaneous pneumo without other pre-existing issues.
 

Nomad 2nd

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Twu dat, and I have both. But in my front pocket, a Glock looks like a glock. My SW airweight (+P rated) doesn't look like anything. No imprint. I don't even remember I'm carrying it..

I'd rather have the Glock in a fight, but if concealment is the goal, then the S&W is better than my Keltec P32

View attachment 381746
I have been carrying a 43x in my pants picket for several years now.

It IS large enough that I have had to follow Col Cooper's advice about guns being comforting vs comfortable and dress around the gun. Fortunately I like Duluth firehouse pants (large pockets) and i also forget that its there.

Shield arms just (FINALLY) came out with their shorter 10 round mags, so I am looking forward to chopping the grip to 43 size so it fits in smaller pockets.

As to sheld arms: out of 40 mags daily carry, shooting and IPSC I have had:
1. Mag that was reliably unreliable from the box. Rather than return it I use it as a training mag.
1. Mag had 2 failures at the last match after months of use with no cleaning. We will see if a cleaning fixes it.

The other 38 have functioned flawlessly.
(I also carry a 48 AIWB)

15 in the gun with a 20 round reload, with 10 in the pocket gun that uses the same mags....

I don't even take my 340 out the safe much anymore.
 

Pluribus

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Are you built tall and lean? Folks with that frame are most likely to get a spontaneous pneumo without other pre-existing issues.
Yes I am, I’m 5‘10“ and at the time, 150 pounds. My doctor said that same thing then. He also said that it’s unlikely to ever happen with that lung again. He didn’t rule out the possibility of my right lung doing it if ever. I also seem prone to occasionally experiencing angina which is always disconcerting.
 
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