19 December 2009
Will PM you momentarily with some .32 info so I don't hijack the OP's .38/200 thread.
By the way, when I've loaded Mt. Baldy 200g LSWC-K bullets in front of a charge of Win231, I get 718fps out of my 2” Detective Special and about 750fps from my 4” guns. (These bullets have to be deep-seated to chamber, so I reduce the old factory load of 3.8g Win 231 by about 10-12% with my lot of powder.) Even the D.S. slug will bore a straight line thru 6 jugs and bury itself to the shoulder in a 2x12, knocking down the 18” board! When I shoot 200g LRN, it tends to curve markedly and jug 6 barely missed getting hit as the bullet curved out of the edge of #5.
These .38SPL loads are roughly 75-100fps faster than the original British .38/200 from a 5” barrel, and they still shoot quite high with fixed sights regulated for 158g bullets. If I slow down the load in a .38 S&W, I wonder what the POA to POI relationship will prove to be.
I guess I'd rate a 200g .38 slug at 600-700fps as VERY rough on a BG if it hits bone, and especially if its soft-cast and SWC shaped. I'd expect a T&T penetration at most angles. Not sure if I'll be able to get an alloy that might expand at those vels, but the SWC gives a full-caliber hole and seems to stay on track, just as the Brits apparently concluded in the 1920s. Soon I'll have a .35 Remington 200g LFP mold & will see how it does against the wily milk jugs. I'm also in on a group buy effort to buy a 200g LSWC-K mold. Let me know if you're interested.
In the meantime, can anyone offer anything about the penetration ability & characteristics of factory .38 S&W loads? I know they're modest by modern standards, but would like to compare them to the .32s I'm loading. Neither would have the shock of high vel, so their physical effectiveness is a function of penetration, not speed or expansion. I expect the heavy-for-caliber .32s will penetrate T&T at close range unless they hit bone. Obviously, wound channel is smaller than a .38, however.