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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Range Report - Sellier & Bellot 32 Colt New Police/32 S&W Long & Rem. 32 S&W Long

My friend with the chronograph & I finally got to the range today to clock the two 32 long loads I found to shoot in my 1952 Colt Detective Special 32 Colt New Police revolver. See this thread for some background:
http://www.coltforum.com/forums/rel...onal-defense-32-s-w-long-ammo-any-better.html

Here's the results for a 5 shot group of Remington 98 gr. and a 5 shot group of Sellier & Bellot 100 gr.

Remington 98 gr. lead round nose
Muzzle Velocity/ Ft. Lbs. Energy
652 f.p.s./ 93 ft.lbs.
689 f.p.s./ 103 ft.lbs.
678 f.p.s./ 100 ft.lbs.
677 f.p.s./ 100 ft.lbs.
703 f.p.s./ 108 ft.lb.s
Average muzzle velocity (5 shots) - 680 f.p.s.
Average foot lbs. of energy (5 shots) - 101 ft.lbs.


Sellier & Bellot 100 gr. lead flat point (round nose)
Muzzle Velocity/ Ft. Lbs. Energy
763 f.p.s./ 129 ft.lbs.
798 f.p.s./ 141 ft.lbs.
766 f.p.s./ 130 ft.lbs.
804 f.p.s./ 144 ft.lbs.
846 f.p.s./ 159 ft.lbs.
Average muzzle velocity (5 shots) - 795 f.p.s.
Average foot lbs. of energy (5 shots) - 140 ft.lbs.

I did some informal researching in various older reloading manuals that were hand-me-downs from my friend, including Speer, Hornady, etc., and the tables in the classic Smith's "Pistols and Revolvers of the World". The average/standard listing for the classic 32 Colt New Police and the identical S&W 32 Long rounds with 98 gr. bullets are 705 f.p.s. delivering 108 ft.lbs. of energy. Pretty anemic.

The S&B round was the highest velocity and ft.lbs. advertised anywhere on the internet compared to Remington, Winchester, Magtech, etc. The 2nd hotest performing brand advertised was the Magtech which one of our members recommended, but I did not purchase any of it.
Neither the Remington or the Sellier & Bellot shot quite as fast or delivered quite as much energy as they advertised at (which I expected). The Remington advertised at 705 f.p.s. and 115 ft. lbs. The Sellier & Bellot advertised at 886 f.p.s. and 174 ft.lbs. I expected both brands would chrono at a little less than advertised claims. My main interest in doing these tests were to see if the S&B ammo came close to their claims because the f.p.s. and ft.lbs. they claimed made the round a little more viable as a close range self defense rd. to me. After all, standard 38 Special goes at about 780 f.p.s. and gets about 195 ft.lbs. But, the 38 Special does have an advantage in a larger cross sectional density.

I am happy to report that the Sellier & Bellot ammo is indeed much "hotter" than any other brand's advertised claims, and is a better self defense round in this loading than the other ammo makers offer.
The figures I reported from the S&B ammo are definitely higher enough compared to the standard offerings citing well established averages for this old chambering. Therefore, to me it is worth buying instead of Remington, Winchester, etc. I initially ordered two boxes of 50 rds. I think I will order two more to make sure I have a good supply of it. It also has the added feature of having a flat nose for us Colt fans instead of the round nose profile of the S&W 32 long lead round nose that everybody else makes. But that adds nothing to performance, of course.

Tenths of decimals were rounded off from f.p.s. and ft.lbs. of energy for this casual report.
 

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Great detail Malysh. I'm presuming that the figures were taken consecutively and as pressures slightly rose, so did each subsequent velocity number. Any leading in the barrel with those bullets at those velocities? Super good job!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yup, the figures are sequential and consecutive in the the order in which they were fired.
I did not notice any leading during cleaning of the DS.

I liked the S&B ammo so much I bought two more boxes at a local gun show yesterday. It's not rare ammo, but try finding it in stock at a local gun shop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Great detail Malysh. I'm presuming that the figures were taken consecutively and as pressures slightly rose, so did each subsequent velocity number. Any leading in the barrel with those bullets at those velocities? Super good job!!
I am much more of a plain shooter and an accumulator of guns than I am versed about ballistics. Why does pressure rise after a few shots?
 

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I am much more of a plain shooter and an accumulator of guns than I am versed about ballistics. Why does pressure rise after a few shots?
They don't always. The only time I noticed consistent increases while chronographing handguns was with lead bullets in the 900-900+ fps range. Unburnt powder fouling and slight leading on the inside of the barrel seemed to cause slight pressure increases and higher velocities. It made me wonder here with velocities under that figure. Perhaps someone more knowledgeable can shed some light on this.
 

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Thanks for posting the chrono information. I was very curious about the S&B .32 NP load. I have shot some of it in a Pocket Positive and a S&W i-frame Terrier and experienced some bullet pull problems with both guns. No problems in larger revolvers though, and I do like the slight increase in performance and the flat point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for posting the chrono information. I was very curious about the S&B .32 NP load. I have shot some of it in a Pocket Positive and a S&W i-frame Terrier and experienced some bullet pull problems with both guns. No problems in larger revolvers though, and I do like the slight increase in performance and the flat point.
Thanks for posting your experiences with the S&B ammo. It's certainly a post worth reading. I have never experienced bullet pull with any of my ammo or revolvers. I haven't shot the 32 NP Detective Special enough to have that experience either.

Wow! The last post we had in this thread was almost a year ago!

To paraphrase (poorly)
"Old threads never die, they just fade away." :)
 

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There is something charming about the .32 NP and it's comparabe kin.

I bet it is a joy to plink with, and, Target Revolvers of course were made for those Cartridges...as were Wadcutter Bullets for Target use.


But, from what is being represented for the Ballistics associated with the Cartridge, it does indeed seem modest as a Self Defense Round, and, would be especially so in a Snubby or shorter Barrel Revolver.

If one feels the Revolver is strong enough, I suppose one could increase the Loading somewhat, but, I know that thought would sort of make one cringe a little ( makes me cringe a little, anyway).

Probably a Sabot with some sort of articulating-opening on impact of Fleshette would be one way to go. Could be done...a scaled-down version of some of the Razor-Edge Archery Points which fold 'out' once entering a target.

A Company like, say 'Exacto' could manufacture those like falling off a Log...for the Re-Loader who would like to have them for Hunting or SD or whatever.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
I wouldn't consider carrying or using my 32 NP or any of the collectable 32acp guns I have, for self defense if I had anything more powerful. I bought the 32 NP gun because it was a very good condition 1952 DS with a factory hammer shroud. Then I tried to learn as much as I could about the caliber without learning to reload or buying reloading equip. I'm certainly not an expert on this venerable old caliber.

I feel comfortable with calibers above 38 Special for self defense. I do have two 9mmK Walther PPKs but they've become so valuable I can't even bear to carry the "shooter" one which is about 86-87% condition. :rolleyes:

I guess if a body wanted to amp up the power of the 32 NP aka 32 S&W Long, they might as well just bore out the cylinder charging holes of the revolver to accept 32 Magnums or buy one of those 327 magnum revolvers.
 

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Yet the .32 NP et al Police Positive and the Pocket Positive and others before the PP, were Revolvers which were in Police use in many areas of the Country way back when...

I know people were generally smaller then, but, there were stil plenty of what by to-days standards were regular sized guys and big guys...so, kinda makes one wonder how they got away with the .32 NP Revolver as a Police Arm of the Day.

Was well thought of as a Target round, and or when loaded for same... if memory serve.
 

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I suspect that some lots of the S&B .32 NP ammo may have crimping issues. I bought two boxes last year from J&G Sales, and both boxes have given me problems with bullets jumping crimp. In the larger guns is isn't a functional issue (they never moved forward enough in a j-frame cylinder to bind the gun), but I suspect that it has to impact accuracy and velocity. When fired from a Colt Pocket Positive or an I-frame Terrier however, the jump is so bad that it will bind up the gun after 2-3 rounds are fired. The bullets can then be 'snapped' back into place with finger pressure and then fired normally. This was disconcerting to be because it is the first time that I have ever had this problem with factory ammo in any of my guns.The pictures:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow! Thanks for the report and pictures Revolvergeek.
I only have the DS in 32 and with the longer cylinder designed around the 38 Special round I agree with you that I shouldn't experience enough bullet jump to bind the cylinder.
I can see how much of a problem it could be for a smaller S&W I frames or the Colt Pocket Positive or even a Police Positive with their respective shorter cylinders.
 

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In the Pocket Pos. / Terrier the NP feels much brisker than most factory ammo. I think that it is a QC issue, hopefully just with some batches, and at some point I plan on recrimping the remains of the box and trying them again. I expect that will fix the issue. Those little flat point NP slugs do cut nice clean holes in paper targets and plastic bottles, and I like the idea of it for carry ammo in the little guns.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I only fired about 25 rds. of S&B through the DS. Coupled with the longer cylinder I didn't notice any problems. I also fired a like amount of Remington. I couldn't feel any difference in recoil between the two ammos. There was really no recoil with either round in the DS. It's a real powder puff to to shoot from that platform.

What was "brisk", was shooting standard pressure short barrel Buffalo Bore 158gr. 38 Special LSWHP from my 1962 S&W Mod 37. But that's another story.
 

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I only fired about 25 rds. of S&B through the DS. Coupled with the longer cylinder I didn't notice any problems. I also fired a like amount of Remington. I couldn't feel any difference in recoil between the two ammos. There was really no recoil with either round in the DS. It's a real powder puff to to shoot from that platform. What was "brisk", was shooting standard pressure short barrel Buffalo Bore 158gr. 38 Special LSWHP from my 1962 S&W Mod 37. But that's another story.
I should have put 'brisker' in quotes. If you alternate them in the cylinder of a Pocket Positive you can feel the difference, but neither was anything like what you would normally get from a .38 snub. More like .22 shorts vs. Stingers kind of of thing. I have been pondering a 4" Police Positive Special in .32 NP for knockaround / kit gun. I don't have a medium sized .32 DA revolver right now, and the 4" PPS might just be the ticket.
 

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I did some testing about 3 or 4 years ago when I bought my 2 1/2 pocket positve. The ammo used for testing was loose old factory winchester and remington 32 S&W long or a few 32 Colt New Police cartridges. All were in the 700 FPS range. I did not have my 4 in. police positve 32 at the time, but the 4 in. gun would most likely had 50 FPS increase in velocity. As stated, this round is no serious SD round by any means but its better than 25 acp and most 22 LR. When loading ammo, one is easily able to get into the 8-850 FPS range safely as I did. It is very noticable when shooting a 700 FPS round and then firing a 800 plus FPS cartridge.
 
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