.38 Special

From Academic Kids

.38 Special (pronounced "Thirty-Eight Special") is a straight walled, rimmed, centre-fire cartridge designed by Smith & Wesson. It is most commonly used in a revolver, however automatic pistols also exist for this round. This was the round used in the service revolvers of many policemen from the 1950s to the 1980s.

Despite its name, its caliber is actually 0.357 inches. The .38 Special is identical to the .357 Magnum excepting that is has a shorter case. This allows the .38 Special round to be used in revolvers chambered for the .357 Magnum.

The .38 Special was introduced in 1902, and originally loaded using black powder. As smokeless gunpowders became popular in the early 20th century, the .38 special was adapted to the new propellants. The .38 Special is one of the most successful handgun cartridges ever produced. More than a century after its introduction, it remains popular for self-defense and recreational shooting.

Because the .38 Special also works in .357 Magnum revolvers, it is popular with users of the .357 Magnum for the reduced recoil and lower noise. A number of lever action rifles are also chambered in .38 Special.

In Pop-culture

The term '.38 special' can refer to the music band .38 Special which used the name.

Synonyms

  • .38 Smith & Wesson Special
  • .38 S&W Special

See Also


Template:Firearms-stub

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