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I believe I saw a statement in a recent topic thread that said that the short-framed Detective Special was perhaps not as strong as the pre-1966 models and also that the later models with enclosed ejector rods were the strongest. I can't really see that the grip frame size would materially affect the strength or durability of the revolver. I also read somewhere in the Colt Forum (or perhaps it was the S&W forum) that Colt warranted all of its .38 Special chambered revolvers for use with .38-44 ammunition back in the 1930's. Any thoughts on this? It's an academic question for me as I wouldn't be shooting heaping piles of hot .38 Special ammunition through any Detective Special.
 

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Re: Here is what I have read

Someone at Colt stated as long as the gun was post WW1 it was OK with plus p and that was asked in the 1980's. The pre WW2 ads that I have looked at either state 38-44 or high speed ammo in DS, OP and PP. The post war adds refer to mid range, standard and high speed but no high speed for alloy frames. Then the new Colt recommendation is 1000 rds in alloy and 2 to 3000 in steel D frames. Mike
 

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Re: Here is what I have read

Read a recent edition of "Handloader" Magazine for the REAL meaning of the 38/44 Ammunition.

Basically,it was a 150-158 gr bullet at close to 1200 fps.(there was also a lighter metal point). This velocity was from the 5" S&W "38/44 H.D.",the gun that introduced it. This is close to most factory .357 loadings for the 158 gr. in today's lawsuit happy society.

Plus P ammo was NOT introduced until the 1970's,by Lee Juras and Super Vel. So "hi speed" in those catalogs meant the .38/44.

While Colt advertised all their steel frame guns being, "OK" for this 38/44 loading,I don't think they meant a steady diet! In "Sixguns",Keith warns twice about seeing some fine Officers Models,stretched beyond repair,with extensive use of the 38/44's,factory loads and his handloads.

I have loaded 38/44s for years,and restrict their use to N frame S&Ws,Colt N.S. and Shooting Master,and a 2nd Gen. SAA.These guns are .38 Specials,not .357 Magnum.

There will never be a definate answer to this question,that will satisfy everyone!

Bud
 
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