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Thread: The .32 S&W Long as a man-stopper

  1. #621
    Boolit Buddy



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    Quote Originally Posted by gordie View Post
    Thank-you Outpost75
    Yes sir an outstanding review of the outstanding information.

    rick

  2. #622
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by bcp View Post
    Since the 30 Carbine gets mentioned once in a while in this thread, here is a photo to think about.

    https://vilda.alaska.edu/digital/col...21/id/99/rec/1

    Bruce
    The photo appears to show Hunter displaying his CAL .30 M1 Carbine with two harvested good size Bears. sort of disproves the statements that the .30 M1 Carbine round and rifle are inadequate for Deer size animal hunting. I am NOT talking of 400+ yard shots here!

    Chev. William

  3. #623
    Boolit Buddy Rodfac's Avatar
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    ".32 Popguns"
    Many thanx for the re-print on .32's, Ed. Your file of wisdom continues to grow here at "Chez" Rodfac. Just hope I don't crash the hard disc some button clicking afternoon. Best regards, Rod

  4. #624
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Another recap of an older article, with updates added today.

    If the moderators want to move this to the Experiences with a .32 sticky, that would be OK:

    Pocket Pistol Wisdom from Down on "The Farm"

    My mentor, the late Harry J. Archer was a career clandestine services officer who served from the post-WWII cold war period through the Vietnam era. Harry was the real-life equivalent of Jack Bauer or Jason Bourne, surviving Cold War era covert missions in denied areas, later in life becoming a highly respected case officer and trainer down at The Farm, at Camp Peary, VA, near Williamsburg, finally retiring and living long enough to die peacefully at home in bed in New Market, VA.

    Harry taught his students that the purpose of a concealed handgun was to neutralize immediate threats from contact distance to about twenty feet to facilitate escape. When on missions where he didn't have official cover, he carried whatever handgun was common among criminal elements in the country where the mission took him. This often meant a .32 ACP or 7.65mm Browning, because a M1911, Colt or S&W revolver would make it obvious that he wasn't "a local."

    While no .32 ACP is your first choice for defense, the first rule of gun fighting is to HAVE A GUN. In the worst-case scenario any gun is better than no gun at all. The .32 is a great "get off me" gun. Many countries restrict foreign nationals who work corporate security for their clients from carrying anything larger than a .22 LR or .32 ACP, so you must "dance with the girl you brought."

    A .32 autopistol is easy to control to produce rapid, accurate double or triple taps, compared to a .380 or 9mm of similar size, which carries one less round. The currently being imported Beretta 81 double-stack magazine .32 ACPs have a heavy slide and heavy-duty recoil spring, like the Model 84 .380 pistols they are based upon. The .32 ACP version can produce 950 fps with the .309" diameter Hornady XTP bullet with 3 grains of AutoComp from its 3.8" barrel. Their 12+1 magazine capacity of the .32 ACP caliber in this model is also a "plus."

    Back in the day (1960-70s) Harry's .32 ACP carry load was the Winchester 100-grain .32-20 lead flatnosed Lubaloy bullet assembled in "sterile" unheadstamped (WWII WRA) primed cases with 3 grains of Hercules Infallible powder (burning rate was between modern Unique and Herco), assembled at 0.95" overall cartridge length, giving 870 +/- 30 fps from a Colt M1903 Pocket Hammerless Type III. This approximated the performance of .32-20 factory loads fired from a revolver of the same barrel length, but in a .32 ACP pocket pistol. Indeed a powerful and effective load. Accurate 31-095T and 2 grs. of TiteGroup produces similar results with near full-caliber "crush" and is a full-charge load which should not be exceeded!

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    In actual chronograph tests of common modern US .32 ACP hardball typically seldom exceeds 850 fps from a pocket pistol with barrel shorter than 3-1/2 inches, whereas WW2 era 73-74 grain hardball from WRA, Peters or Remington-UMC was little different in velocity than Euro ammo of the period. This was well before the era when lawyers started making the engineering decisions...

    The current Speer Gold Dot and Hornady XTP JHPs do break 900 fps, but seldom expand much from barrels shorter than 3-1/2.” European CIP 73-gr. hardball such as Fiocchi, RWS, Geco, Norma, Sako, Hirtenberg or Sellier & Bellot produces about 900 f.p.s. from pocket pistols such as the Beretta Tomcat, and 950+ f.p.s. from the Walther PP, SIG P230, or Beretta M1935, M70 and M81. European municipal police carried .32 ACPs and felt them adequate until after the 1972 Munich Olympics terrorist attacks.

    When using a marginal caliber, feeding reliability, shot placement, ability to produce rapid multiple hits with deep penetration are most important. You want not less than 20” of water or 12” of gelatin penetration. Experienced users of deep-concealment, hideaway guns agree, based on police and military experience dating back to Fairbairn and Sykes exploits in China before WW2, and continuing through the Cold War era. Lighter weight, short-nosed hollow point bullets often fail to feed and may fail to penetrate larger bones or defeat intermediate cover, such as a defensively positioned arm, needed to reach vital organs.

    Comparing European CIP specification 73-77-grain hardball in .32 ACP to typical .380 FMJs fired from similarly short barrels any difference in performance not important. Light-weight .380 ACP bullets of fragile enough construction to expand from very short barrels, often fail in the penetration department. Typical .32 ACP hardball, however, usually does a 180-degree "flip" during the first 6-8" of soft-target penetration, continuing base-first to cause more damage than its kinetic energy would suggest. It also tends to bounce around inside the body cavity, rather than penetrating in a straight path.

    In my testing of numerous different .32 ACP pocket guns, no JHP loads currently available would expand reliably in either water jugs or gelatin when fired from barrels shorter than 3 inches. US commercial .32 ACP loads are "anemic" compared to their CIP-Euro counterparts and less reliable in function. Many WWII-era European military and police pistols steadfastly refuse to function with American ammo, even Buffalo Bore.

    In my testing the short-overall length JHP and hard cast lead flat-nosed rounds such as Buffalo Bore are not reliable enough for defense carry. In most guns they are almost a sure recipe for a “Jam-O-Matic.” The Beretta 81 is the only pistol I have tested which ran Buffalo Bore 75-grain hard-cast FN out of the box with no drips, runs or errors. In most guns overall cartridge length should be 0.945" or greater to prevent rounds from repositioning in the magazine stack, due to recoil, causing "rim-lock." The heavy slide and stiff recoil spring of the Beretta 81 series also helps to mitigate against heavier loads pounding its light-alloy frame to the death, a common cause of failure in Keltec and Beretta Tomcat "mouse guns."

    The best .32 ACP pistols for pocket carry should enable safe carry with the chamber loaded, and should be capable of immediate firing by stroking the trigger without having to manipulate an external safety. In the event of a misfire, the trigger mechanism should enable an immediate repeat strike upon the primer by repeating the trigger stroke, and should produce not less than 0.010" copper indent on the government "C" sized .225x.400" copper crusher when used in the government gage holder. While the drawings for the gage holders are in the public domain, the coppers are not available to the gunsmith trade, but only to the gun manufacturers and the labs who assess compliance with government contracts. The last time I bought any, the sole provider was Olin, the minimum order 1000 coppers, and in 2001 they cost about $1 each.

    So gunsmiths and police armorers developed a "work-around." The Federal 200 primer used to be designated for "small rifle and magnum pistol," whereas today it is "small pistol Magnum." The base metal thickness of its primer cup is 0.018" + 0.0015"/-0.0000, the same as the military M1 carbine and military 9mm primers, versus 0.0125" + 0.0015/-0.000 for typical small pistol primers used in standard-pressure loads like the .32 ACP and .38 Special (non+P). The Remington 6-1/2 primer is also analogous to the military .30 carbine primer and can be used for similar function tests. So our work around is to assemble 100 rounds in new brass, or once-fired brass in which you are hand-seating the primers into a CLEAN primer pocket, then fire 100 rounds for function test. Accept zero defects. If you get ONE misfire, repeat the test, accept on 1 fail to fire in 200 rounds, reject on 2. If the pistol does not pass, check firing pin driven protrustion to be in the range of 0.028-0.032," headspace to be within limits, replace the hammer spring and test again. Pistols which readily meet these test criteria are the Walther PP, SIG P230, Mauser HSc, CZ27, original Colt M1903 Pocket Hammerless and the Beretta Model 81.

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    The micro-pistols such as the Keltec P-32 and Beretta Tomcat are attractive for concealment, but are difficult to shoot well. They are also not durable when fed a steady diet of heavy loads or a high volume of standard-pressure loads. My advice is to severely limit loads producing over 130 ft.-lbs. to only occasional or emergency use in the micro pistols because they may cause “slide bite” if you have meaty hands and don’t use a Hogue Grip Sleeve, as I painfully found out. After prolonged firing, [over 1000 rounds] loads with bullets over 80 grains and 850 fps are “frame crackers.” My Beretta Model 3032 INOX Tomcat, which replaced my earlier blued version (in which the frame cracked after less than 500 rounds of RWS hardball) did somewhat better, and digested 2000 rounds of hot CIP-Euro and heavy-bullet hand loads before the frame finally cracked. (I finally replaced the .32 Tomcat with an original model Ruger LCP .380 for my deep cover carry and it is still soldiering on after 2000 rounds of 120-grain lead FN handloads with Accurate 35-120H and 2.5 grains of Bullseye).

    The most effective carry load in the .32 ACP is a +P handload with the Hornady 90-grain XTP bullet of .309" diameter with 3 grains of AutoComp, at an overall cartridge length of 0.950-0.955," producing 930 fps. from a 3-1/2" barrel and 960 fps from the 3.8" Beretta 81. This load is best limited to steel frame guns. If used even in sturdy, alloy-frame guns with heavy slides and springs such as the Beretta 81 and M70 Puma consider I consider it +P and NOT for casual shooting in quantity if you want your gun to last!

    ONLY IF your barrel slugs larger than .310" groove diameter, substitute the Hornady 85-grain XTP .312" intended for the .32 H&R Magnum for the same result. The XTP bullet from the .32 ACP does not expand spectacularly as depicted in typical gun magazine hype, but does expand "some," to about .40 cal., so is more effective than FMJ, and it penetrates deeply.

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    The classic Colt M1903 Pocket Hammerless, Beretta 1935, CZ27, CZ50 and the Walther PP are steel-frame pistols which I have shot extensively with these heavy loads. These particular guns will reliably feed large flatnosed bullets such as the Saeco #325 semi-wadcutter and the Accurate 31-095T. The Beretta 81 also feeds the large flatnosed bullets and Buffalo Bore 75-grainers. In pistols which do not feed reliably with anything other than FMJRN "hardball" the best cast bullets are the 87-94 grain Accurate 31-087B, 31-087T and 31-094H bullets. If you intend to standardize on bullets heavier than 80 grains in your .32 ACP pistols, it is VERY highly recommended that you replace the standard recoil spring with a .380 ACP version for the same model pistol, if available.

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    Let’s be clear that the .32 ACP is not my choice as a defense gun against either two-legged or 4-legged predators. However, there are those times when “any gun is better than no gun,” so it is better to take an easily concealed .32 along than to go unarmed and take your chances. When the cylinder bulge of my usual Colt .38 Detective Special is too obvious, my 1903 Colt Pocket Hammerless, Beretta M1935 or SIG P230 drop nicely into a pocket holster. I shoot these better than my Ruger LCP .380 and like the fact that a .32 makes a bigger hole than a 22 but still presents a low profile. With correct loads performance is equal to most factory loads in the .380 ACP. Typical .32 ACP pistols give you an additional round of magazine capacity too.

    We aren't talking about "one-shot stops" here, but to quickly and accurately put double or triple taps on target. The Italian Carabinieri practice 3-shots in 2 seconds at 5 metres or 2 shots in 2 seconds at 10 metres, aiming at a 10 cm x 8 cm oval which represents the nose, eyes and forehead of a terrorist. While these days they carry 9mm pistols, the drill dates back to the WW2 era and the .32 ACP and .380 ACP Berettas. Multiple hits increase stopping power.

    Think of a .32 ACP as delivering a 00 buckshot pattern which arrives sequentially rather than concurrently.

    Do you want to stand in front of it? Didn't think so...

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    An appropriate historical anecdote from Caroline Moorehead's book "A House In The Mountains" p. 321

    "After VE day the Allies insisted on collecting the weapons which had been air dropped to Italian partisans during the war. In order to prevent a Communist takeover there could be no weapons with which to do it. On 9 May 1945 the process of disarming the Italian partisans began. The fighters were invited to assemble at collection centers to turn in their weapons and ammunition and in return would receive a bolt of cloth and 7000L with which to turn it into civilian dress. The handover was staged with some degree of ceremony with flags, military bands and political speeches... But the organizers did not understand that the men and women they were dealing with were not eager, self-respecting and docile, but seasoned, war-weary combat veterans who did not trust this new set of occupiers any more than the Germans.

    As the weapons were being handed over the Allies noticed that they consisted mostly of larger items, bazookas, mortars, machineguns and large quantities of bolt-action rifles, but very few of the SMGs, pistols, revolvers and semi-automatic carbines which were so much in evidence in the days leading up to The Liberation... Borne away into the valleys, concealed in attics, barns and cellars or buried in pits in the garden were scores of grenades, carbines, SMGs, pistols and revolvers. Later the Allies who made over 50 raids across the Italian Piedmont in search of hidden weapons would estimate that less than 60 percent of what had been dropped was actually returned."


    And when I visited Italy in 2011 the Carabinieri were using ground penetrating radar and STILL recovering WW2 weapons caches buried in graveyards, walled up in stone fences and farmhouses. Farmers having hunting licenses, who find caches and call the authorities are frequently rewarded for their good citizenship by having an M1 carbine or Garand and an S&W Victory revolver added to their firearms certificate. Any explosives are removed to a nearby military base where they are detonated and the machineguns and ammunition inventoried and stored for training use.

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    Yes, the MG34 was operational and found along with the restored motorcycle in Tuscany!
    Last edited by Outpost75; 02-05-2020 at 10:50 PM.
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  5. #625
    Boolit Buddy LouisianaMan's Avatar
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    Thanks, Outpost! Extremely interesting and useful info on .32 ACP guns and ammo. Much appreciated!

  6. #626
    Boolit Buddy Rodfac's Avatar
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    Geez, Outpost...you're killin' me here...reason to buy yet another .32...wife's going to kill me...That said, I do have a set of 310 Tong tool dies for .32 ACP, garnered years if not decades ago in a gun-show buy with some others that I really wanted at the time.... .38-40, 41 Mag, .45 Colt, .270, and an all steel set in .218 Bee included the handles.

    The only downside, as I see it, to another gun acquisition, and in a minuscule sized caliber, is my advancing arthritic fingers have trouble enough with .32 Long cases in the Dillon, let alone one nearly as tiny as a .22 LR. Big gun-show coming up here in Louisville on the 22nd, however, and there's always some odd stuff on the back tables. One can only hope...

    BTW, the RCBS 32-98 SWC (as well as Accurate 31-100R) will keep 'em all in a neat little cluster from the 10 yd. line, with 2.2 gr of Bullseye...Colt Police Positive is the gun...0.314" throats and that's what I size to. ACWW + as little tin as I can get away with to keep the mold filling out adequately. Makes up into a neat little business-like round. All in all it's a good dog-walker gun for me...light at 20 oz's, with a 4" bbl. and snug in a home-made holster I sewed up earlier this week. Also added a Pachmayr grip adapter to fill out my grip. Pic's below.

    Best regards and thx for the article Outpost...Rod





    Last edited by Rodfac; 02-05-2020 at 10:57 AM. Reason: Pics added

  7. #627
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Nice Colt. Here are a couple of mine shown with The Infamous Bunny Gun by John Taylor.

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  8. #628
    Boolit Master
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    When was that article published? I was of the understanding that the Bobcat had been updated and the frame cracking issue had been resolved. Any way, I'm purchasing a NAA Guardian in 32acp this week as a deep carry. My 327FM revolvers are just a tad big for real pocket carry.

  9. #629
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thundarstick View Post
    When was that article published? I was of the understanding that the Bobcat had been updated and the frame cracking issue had been resolved. Any way, I'm purchasing a NAA Guardian in 32acp this week as a deep carry. My 327FM revolvers are just a tad big for real pocket carry.
    My heavy slide Beretta INOX Tomcat which Beretta USA sent me to replace my earlier blued version also failed.

    It just took 2000 rounds to break, whereas the original version pistol failed in less than 500.
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  10. #630
    Boolit Master
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    I away ask myself If I were a Bad Guy would I want this caliber in my chest? Guess what.... I say no to all calibers!
    Now if you are fighting against "bath salt" demons well a 45 auto may do you no good!
    A normal guy, not hopped up, will not like a .22 lr Velocitor in the chest!
    " Associate with men of good quality, if you esteem your own reputation: for it is better to be alone than in bad company. " George Washington

  11. #631
    Boolit Master
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    Just joined the .32 S & W Long Club...hope to be doing some loading for it soon..!

    Lovely bright Bore, crisp Rifling, Timing and Lock up excellent...

    Hosted on Fotki

    .32 ACP wise, I am anxious to try my old "IDEAL" Truncated-Spike-front Wadcutter Mold to see if it's Boolits will feed in my FN m22 Pistol ( 4-1/2 inch Barrel ) and my 1907 SAVAGE ( 3-3/4 inch Barrel ), both of which prefer peppier Cartridges than the usual US offerings...and of course give much better FPS than the little 'short' Barrel Pistols.

  12. #632
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Nice old S&W. Has it family history? My Grandma carried this one as a piano player in a Boston speakeasy during Prohibition, because she did not want to be associated with the "upstairs" girls.

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  13. #633
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Outpost75 View Post
    Nice old S&W. Has it family history? My Grandma carried this one as a piano player in a Boston speakeasy during Prohibition, because she did not want to be associated with the "upstairs" girls.

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    No family history other than starting today..!

    Got it on Gunbroker.

    Lovely little Colt you have from your Grandmother!

    How cool!

    Is it a "New Police"?

  14. #634
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    I have a friend named "Ted". Ted grew up in WWII Germany. After the war he made his way to the U.S. and became a citizen. He joined the Army and was rewarded with an all expenses trip to Vietnam in 1965 with 1st Brigade 101st Abn Div. One night while sitting in his fighting position the VC attacked. It was a pitched battle and the VC just kept coming. Teds platoon was being overrun, it was bayonet time. A VC knocked Ted to the ground and was trying to stab Ted in the chest with his bayonet.Ted was holding the VC's arm trying not to be stabbed while the VC had all his weight bearing down on Ted. Ted was digging in his cargo pocket with his free hand and pulled out his Walther PP 7.65 Browning and emptied it in charlies chest. Ted still carries his PP. He trusts it. Teds a good man and I don't think he'll be with us much longer. He told me this when I showed him my Walther PP 7.65. Funny thing though, I could never convince Ted that 7.65 Browning was the same thing as 32 ACP.The box had to have 7.65 Browning on it.
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  15. #635
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oyeboten View Post
    No family history other than starting today..!

    Got it on Gunbroker.

    Lovely little Colt you have from your Grandmother!

    How cool!

    Is it a "New Police"?
    A 3-1/3" Pocket Positive chambered in .32 NP
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  16. #636
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    At this time our range is closed due to snow and cold. So I am left with reading and pondering the net. I have a question on the pistols which actually work for carry, either social or field. If safe carry with a loaded round and minimal controls on a small pistol is the standard several of the old 32swould appear to miss on one or more of the requirements. The Colt 1903 is not drop safe and has a small to access safety and the Beretta 1935 as well. the Colt 1908 is the only one I have experience with. The Beretta Tomcat and Keltec are rather small for those of us with large hands. The Walther PP and PPK, as well as the Sig 230 are the only ones I know of that meet the standard for safe carry we use today. The Sig is large enough that other larger calibers on newer platforms are about the same size. I am not familiar with the CZs or other Walther copies from a safety prepective or accuracy or ease of use. I am for the most part partial to Colt revolvers, but I do enjoy reading through the experiences and thoughts of others and the history of many of these firearms. I apperciate the following the 32 have and the comment that those of experience have made.

  17. #637
    Boolit Master
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    What's"the safe standard"your referring to?

    If your hands are too club like to handle a micro pistol it's likely your pants pockets are big enough to conceal about anything you want to carry as well. Once you get beyond a certain weight and size a larger caliber seems to make sense, but larger calibers in the same weight gun are often less controllable and slower to get back on target. Don't believe me? Shoot a PPK in 380 and 32 and tell me the one you can shoot fastest with the most accuracy? Remember, only hits count in a gun fight, you can't miss fast enough to win. Btw, I'll take any pistol over my pocket knife!

  18. #638
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Military drop safety standard we tested to (1980s) which Beretta 92F passed was to weld small eyelets on gun frame so that it could be slid freely on piano wires and dropped from a height of 2 meters onto a 20mm thick steel plate backed by 200mm of steel reinforced concrete, six attitudes:

    muzzle down
    muzzle up
    left side down
    right side down
    barrel horizontal sights down
    barrel horizontal sights up

    Repeat the six drops with a primed case in chamber repeating in each condition:

    hammer down with safety off
    hammer down with safety on
    hammer at full cock safety off
    hammer at full cock safety on

    Protocols varies for pistols having passive safety devices without separate mechanical safety.

    No fire of the primer was permitted.
    Visible marking of the primer considered a minor category defect and test would be repeated.
    Pistol must still function after the rough handling test.
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  19. #639
    Boolit Master
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    So do all currently produced handguns meet this standard?

  20. #640
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thundarstick View Post
    So do all currently produced handguns meet this standard?
    Only the ones the US military buys and the few commercial producers who actually test to that standard to defend themselves in product liability lawsuits.
    The ENEMY is listening.
    HE wants to know what YOU know.
    Keep it to yourself.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check