S&W 642 Airweight - PD ammo suggestions

Discussion in 'Handguns' started by mitchntx, Oct 8, 2013.

  1. mitchntx

    mitchntx Sarcasm Sensei TGT Supporter

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    I picked up a box of 110g hydroshox claiming "low recoil". I chose those for no other reason than that's all he had. LOL.

    I've read on other forums that 130g +P is the preferred PD ammo in 38 snubs and could see that for heavier guns. But a light breeze will blow this thing off the table.

    I don;t want to have a stack of PD ammo laying around that I won't use for its intended purpose and PD ammo is just too expensive to plink and experiment.

    Thoughts on PD ammo for the Airweight?
     


  2. OIF2

    OIF2 Well-Known

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    135 grain Speer Gold Dot. Good track record in shootings on both the NYPD and LAPD. Department issue (on both agencies) for those still carrying .38s.
    Bob
     
  3. BRevell

    BRevell <b>Forum Sponsor</b>

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    I use Hornady Critical Defense in my j-frame.
     
  4. Kingsnake

    Kingsnake Member

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    +1 on the Speer 135 grain .38 Special "short barrel load". This round was developed specifically for the 2" j frames and and really gets this caliber up off it's knees. With the lightweight frame of your particular revolver you definitely will want to avoid the also highly effective +p 158 grain LSWCHP "FBI Load" because they tend to jump the bullet crimp upon firing causing the weapon to lock up.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013
  5. navyguy

    navyguy TGT Addict

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    There is nothing wrong with the low recoil .38's. Think of it as shooting a .380. Yeah I know there are many that think that the .380 is not an adequate defense round, and sure it's a bit wimpy. But for those that are recoil sensitive, it's better than nothing.

    I can tell you first hand that shooting +p out of a 642 is about as bad as it gets. Range or defense situation, if a person is anticipating that severe recoil, shot placement will suffer. If you're 2- 3 feet away, accuracy is not going to be an issue. Get beyond that in range, with the stress of a defensive situation, no telling where the shots will go.
     
  6. Glockster69

    Glockster69 TGT Addict

    Jul 1, 2011
    Good question. I carry a 340CT which is slightly lighter than your 642 so ...... subscribed.
     
  7. benenglish

    benenglish Lifetime Supporter Staff Member Moderator Lifetime Member Admin

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    I'm old and don't expect reliable expansion from conventional ammo in a snub. When I load a .38 for defense, I use standard 148 grain target wadcutters. Based on gelatin tests, they over penetrate a bit but they do cut a full diameter hole all the way through. At ~700 fps, recoil is light.

    Of course, if you prefer a more hairy-chested version of that load, there's always this: 38 Special +P
     
  8. CALI

    CALI Active Member

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    I use this on my back up 642 as well. Even my wife can handle it and she is Asian...small hands.

     
  9. zenfly

    zenfly Member

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    Gold Dot, Win Ranger,

     
  10. DonnieR

    DonnieR New Member

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    I like the S & W 642! I want one to carry as a back up and or off duty piece. What I would shoot is Hornady 125 gr XTP® round or even the 158 gr XTP®
     


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