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Posted: 1/25/2006 9:42:23 PM EDT
That is a pretty significant size difference I would think going by the name of the caliber alone. Why does it work ? I was thinking about this earlier and figured why not ask here ?
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:44:04 PM EDT
.38 and .357 are both .357 in diameter. And the .38 is only a little bit shorter than .357 so shooting both in a .357 revolver works.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:44:20 PM EDT
a .357 magnum round is just a slightly longer .38 special with more powder.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:45:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Sodie:
.38 and .357 are both .357 in diameter. And the .38 is only a little bit shorter than .357 so shooting both in a .357 revolver works.



Why is it called a .38 then ?
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:46:09 PM EDT
What the two guys above me wrote.

<­BR>





­

I don't seem to be posting much tonight.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:46:20 PM EDT
They both have the same size bullet, which is a .357 or so.

A .38 special is a .357, but a .38-40 is a .40. Go figure.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:47:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LANCEMAN:

Originally Posted By Sodie:
.38 and .357 are both .357 in diameter. And the .38 is only a little bit shorter than .357 so shooting both in a .357 revolver works.



Why is it called a .38 then ?



Who knows. A lot of calibers do that (.44 Mag is actually .41" in diameter, .303 Brit is actually .311, etc. etc.).
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:47:41 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/25/2006 9:48:10 PM EDT by DeadSled]
same reason you can fire a 44 special trough a 44 magnum and a 22 short in a 22lr

and make hamburger out of ground beef
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:49:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DeadSled:
same reason you can fire a 44 special trough a 44 magnum and a 22 short in a 22lr

and make hamburger out of ground beef

You can make hamburger out of ground beef?
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:50:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By OBird:

Originally Posted By LANCEMAN:

Originally Posted By Sodie:
.38 and .357 are both .357 in diameter. And the .38 is only a little bit shorter than .357 so shooting both in a .357 revolver works.



Why is it called a .38 then ?



Who knows. A lot of calibers do that (.44 Mag is actually .41" in diameter, .303 Brit is actually .311, etc. etc.).



.44 magnum is .429.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:52:54 PM EDT
.357 Magnum is just a beefed up .38 Special. So you can shoot the weaker ammo in the larger gun. If you put .357 Magnum in a .38 Special however, you've got good odds of blowing your gun up or bulging the cylinder.

You can also shoot .45 Long Colt in a .454 Casull revolver, but not the other way around. Ditto for .44 Special and .44 Magnum.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:56:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By GiggleSmith:

Originally Posted By DeadSled:
same reason you can fire a 44 special trough a 44 magnum and a 22 short in a 22lr

and make hamburger out of ground beef

You can make hamburger out of ground beef?



as well as tacos and chili
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:58:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LANCEMAN:

Originally Posted By Sodie:
.38 and .357 are both .357 in diameter. And the .38 is only a little bit shorter than .357 so shooting both in a .357 revolver works.



Why is it called a .38 then ?



It was a marketing strategy. The cartridge was designed to compete with the larger diameter cartridges popular when it was developed and the name was intended to show it was as effective or in the same class as the larger competition. Thats how I remember it anyway.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:58:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By LonePathfinder:

Originally Posted By GiggleSmith:

Originally Posted By DeadSled:
same reason you can fire a 44 special trough a 44 magnum and a 22 short in a 22lr

and make hamburger out of ground beef

You can make hamburger out of ground beef?



as well as tacos and chili



Don't be silly. How can someone make a taco shell out of ground beef????
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:00:36 PM EDT
Only thing I can think of is the original designers calipers must have been defective.

Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:02:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/25/2006 10:04:07 PM EDT by uglygun]
Someone once told me to take calipers and measure the dimensions of the loaded case of a 38 and 44, seems that is where the dimensions for the naming of the cartridge came from more than anything to do with the actual bullet diameter itself.


38Special once had a more potent familiar relative, the 38/44 cartridge. Was essentially a hot rodded 38Special that was built on the heavy duty frame of the 44 Special(N-frame).

Problem was that 38/44 ammo could be loaded into smaller framed guns meant for ordinary 38Special ammo, care had to be taken with such rounds to not get them mixed up. Much like using 38+P of today in guns not rated for them.

To solve the problem, the 357 Magnum was created by lengthening the 38Special case .1 inch. It's enough to prevent chambering 357Magnum into a 38Special. The name 357Magnum was likely to help people differentiate between the two cartridges, rather than have a "38 Magnum" they went with bullet diameter when making the name.


357Magnum is a relative of the 38 Special, case is just lengthened hence the reason why 38Special can be fired in guns chambered for 357Magnum.

Similar relationships as others have noted between 44Special and 44Magnum, 45LC and 454 Casull(though there are some dangers associated with doing it often in the 454Casull).


Btw, here's a picture of the 38/44 Outdoorsman sitting in my collection. I've hotloaded for it on a few occasions with 158grn LSWCs at around 1200fps, a touch over what you see most +P loadings for 38Special loaded to these days.

Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:03:48 PM EDT

Originally Posted By iamblades:
Only thing I can think of is the original designers calipers must have been defective.




It gets confusing, that's for sure.

Some cartridges are measured by the grooves of the barrel they were fired from, some from the lands. Some from the actual diameter. Some from a similar cartridge "family", etc.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:08:46 PM EDT
BTW: Since we are talking the difference between a 38Rem Spl and a 357Rem Magnum, the cases may look approximately the same, but they 357Rem Mag case is a lot stronger because it is heat treated something you can't see. I took a short-tour of the Starline case manufacturing plant when they were in Santa Fe Springs CAlif(about 15 miles south of Los Angeles), and that was one of the questions I posed to the plant manager. Starline is a also a sub-contractor to all of the major ammo manufacturers. When I was there, I saw headstamp dies for all of the major ammo manufacturers.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:10:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/25/2006 10:11:06 PM EDT by GiggleSmith]

Originally Posted By bastiat:

Originally Posted By LonePathfinder:

Originally Posted By GiggleSmith:

Originally Posted By DeadSled:
same reason you can fire a 44 special trough a 44 magnum and a 22 short in a 22lr

and make hamburger out of ground beef

You can make hamburger out of ground beef?



as well as tacos and chili



Don't be silly. How can someone make a taco shell out of ground beef????

You can make a hamburger out of chili beans?
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:11:34 PM EDT
just dont shoot a .357mag out of a .38spl firearm....
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:13:55 PM EDT
It is good info to know, thanks for the information guys I appreciate it. I have some Colt Police Positives that were my granddads, a couple in .38 specials and one in 32-20, never shot any of them, they just sit in the safe. I have a S&W 637 .38 that I carry sometimes so I have always been curious about the relationship to the .357 mag.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:15:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ALPHAGHOST:
just dont shoot a .357mag out of a .38spl firearm....



Hell .38 +P is enough for me as it is out of S&W airweight 637, wouldn't even consider it
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:20:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:

Originally Posted By OBird:

Originally Posted By LANCEMAN:

Originally Posted By Sodie:
.38 and .357 are both .357 in diameter. And the .38 is only a little bit shorter than .357 so shooting both in a .357 revolver works.



Why is it called a .38 then ?



Who knows. A lot of calibers do that (.44 Mag is actually .41" in diameter, .303 Brit is actually .311, etc. etc.).



.44 magnum is .429.



D'oh! Yes you are absolutely right. I thought there was something wrong with that number (getting confused with the actual .41 caliber round).
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:24:28 PM EDT

I believe the original .38 was the outside diameter of the rifling in the barrel. The .357 is the bullet diameter.

The .38 Special was a more powerful version of the .38 S&W, which was spawned off the .38 long colt, a black powder round. (or something like that(.

Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:31:02 PM EDT
and don't forget the .380
that won't fit in a 38 spl or a 357 mag wheelgun,
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:50:14 PM EDT
supposedly some .357s will chamber, fire and extract .38 Super, with its semi rim, but that was not the case in a Colt Python that I tried it in.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 1:52:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/26/2006 1:55:48 AM EDT by glklvr]
The reason the .38 is called a .38 is because it is a decendant of the .38 Short Colt, which was originally a heeled bullet, like the .22LR. It was .357 inside the case. Because it was .38 outside of the case, that was the cailber designation. The name (due to familiarity and acceptance) was kept.

Do a search for ".38 short colt" and "heeled bullet."
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 2:23:16 AM EDT

Originally Posted By glklvr:
The reason the .38 is called a .38 is because it is a decendant of the .38 Short Colt, which was originally a heeled bullet, like the .22LR. It was .357 inside the case. Because it was .38 outside of the case, that was the cailber designation. The name (due to familiarity and acceptance) was kept.

Do a search for ".38 short colt" and "heeled bullet."



Right anwser.

Also you can't fire a .357 mag in a .38 spl gun, you couldn't get the cylinder closed. The .357 mag was designed longer just for that reason.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 2:32:06 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Swindle1984:
.357 Magnum is just a beefed up .38 Special. So you can shoot the weaker ammo in the larger gun. If you put .357 Magnum in a .38 Special however, you've got good odds of blowing your gun up or bulging the cylinder.

You can also shoot .45 Long Colt in a .454 Casull revolver, but not the other way around. Ditto for .44 Special and .44 Magnum.



Both can be used in a .445 Supermag
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