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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello all, first time posting! I recently inherited Colt Police Positive .38 (SN #335***) from my grandpa. From what I can tell, it's the .38 S&W (Colt New Police?). Anyways, what ammo is safe to shoot? Safe meaning that it correctly fits the specs of the gun, doesn't run too hot, and won't cause long term damage to internal parts. Remington has some 146gr Lead RN @ 685 fps, and Buffalo Bore has a new self defense version that is 125 gr HC-FN @ 1000* fps. The fps is notably higher with the BB ammo, won't this cause damage? I will not shoot reloads or modified ammo through this handgun, only factory. The handgun itself was inspected by my LGS with the "green light" to shoot. I could not find a thread on this topic, if there is one please link! Thank you!

- THEtrueDIABETIC
 

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Remington, Winchester and Fiocchi make 38 S&W ammunition safe for your firearm. 38 Colt New Police also is correct but has not been produced in 40 years. I notice Fiocchi labels it 38 S&W short which one should not confuse with 38 short Colt. I acquired a Colt Bankers Special a few months ago but noticed it was not easy to find ammo or empty brass in my area. I now have about 4 boxes of ammo and that is enough as I reload. Buffalo Bore ammo is stated to be loaded to SAMMI specs and should not harm your gun. I have 2 of those rounds and will fire them out of my 2" Bankers Special to see what velocity they get. One of the reasons 38 S&W is loaded on the lower end of power is because of the many top break revolvers chambered for it. Your Colt is a solid frame revolver made in 1930 and is not of a weak design. If you are able to find ammo and discover you like shooting the revolver you may have to reconsider you position on reloading. 38 S&W is easy to reload for your Colt as it accepts the commonly available .358 lead bullets. Even if you don't reload, please save your empties for sale to someone who does.
 

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If I were you I would stick to the more conventional brands of ammo and not use the Buffalo Bore. It is true that the Buffalo Bore is standard pressure and will not harm your gun since it's not a top break, but a solid frame revolver. However, with a lighter bullet like a 125gr., you will find that your gun will be printing low to the point of aim by about 6 inches at 10 yds. The reason is that all 38 S&W and Colt 38 New Police cartridges were made with 146gr. and 151gr. bullets respectively, for many decades. The sights on these old guns were regulated and made a certain height to shoot the heavier bullets.
The Buffalo Bore is a bit more powerful, but unless you insist on using your Colt 38 New Police as a self defense or target gun, stay with standard weight cartridges of the day.

A quick fix is to pass a file over the top of the front sight gently, and reduce it's height. I certainly wouldn't file a front sight down on a venerable old Colt revolver just so it hit center at point of aim. I'd use another gun for carry and self defense, or aim lower on the target.

Shooters find this same set of circumstances when shooting lighter 38 Special loads from older revolvers. The older 38 Special revolvers were regulated for 158gr. standard weight bullets. Since the 1980s, many ammo companies have made 38 Special loads with bullets weighing anywhere from about 110gr. - 135gr. Those old 38 Specials will also print lower because of the newer 38 Special loadings. Traditional 158gr. 38 Special loadings are still available and if the shooter wants his 38 Special to hit at point of aim and doesn't want to start filing down front sights, he sticks to the standard bullet weight.

The same will hold true with the newer lighter Buffalo Bore 38 S&W load. It will most certainly print lower at the point of aim than the old standard weight slug in that old a revolver.
 

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The Remington 148 gr. Hollow Base Wad Cutter(HBWC) is cheap and very accurate with 1.8 gr. Bullseye .My favorite "punching holes in paper" cartridge and revolver. Worth the effort to find/get ammo and shoot it a bit.Be nice to it and clean it up good after shooting,you can give it to your son some day.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the help everyone! I will be sure to keep it clean and stored safely so the next generation can enjoy, just as my grandpa did for me :)
 
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