38 Special Ammo

The .38 Special cartridge is world-renowned and one of the most common self-defense cartridges in use today. A sought-after advantage is that it can be chambered in small revolvers that are easily concealed, but are still very powerful and accurate – ideal for personal protection. Learn More

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  1. Winchester 38 Special Ammo - 50 Rounds of +P 158 Grain LWC Ammunition

    4 In stock now

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    Image For 50 Rounds Of 158 Grain LSWCHP Boxer Brass 38 Special Winchester Ammunition
    $36.00 Price

    Qty:

    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester

    • New Condition
    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester
    • American-made Range
    • 72¢ Cost Per Round
    • Winchester SKU X38SPD
    • UPC 020892201354
  2. Federal 38 Special Ammo - 50 Rounds of 129 Grain JHP Ammunition

    12 In stock now

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    Image For 50 Rounds Of 129 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Federal Ammunition
    $37.75 Price

    Qty:

    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Federal

    • New Condition
    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Federal
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 75.5¢ Cost Per Round
    • Federal SKU P38HS1G
  3. Hornady 38 Special Ammo - 25 Rounds of 125 Grain JHP Ammunition

    53 In stock now

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    Image For 25 Rounds Of 125 Grain JHP Boxer Brass 38 Special Hornady Ammunition
    $19.00 Price

    Qty:

    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady

    • New Condition
    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 76¢ Cost Per Round
    • Hornady SKU 90324
    • UPC 090255903249
  4. SinterFire Special Duty 38 Special Ammo - 20 Rounds of 110 Grain Frang. HP Ammunition

    29 In stock now

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    Image For 20 Rounds Of 110 Grain Frang. Boxer Brass 38 Special SinterFire Ammunition
    $15.75 Price

    Qty:

    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by SinterFire

    • New Condition
    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by SinterFire
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 78.8¢ Cost Per Round
    • SinterFire SKU SF38110SD
    • UPC 856086004650
  5. Hornady Critical Defense Lite 38 Special Ammo - 25 Rounds of 90 Grain FTX Ammunition

    46 In stock now

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    Image For 25 Rounds Of 90 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Hornady Ammunition
    $21.99 Price

    Qty:

    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady

    • New Condition
    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 88¢ Cost Per Round
    • Hornady SKU 90300
    • UPC 090255903003
  6. Hornady 38 Special Ammo - 25 Rounds of 158 Grain JHP Ammunition

    30 In stock now

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    Image For 25 Rounds Of 158 Grain JHP Boxer Brass 38 Special Hornady Ammunition
    $22.00 Price

    Qty:

    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady

    • New Condition
    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 88¢ Cost Per Round
    • Hornady SKU 90362
    • UPC 090255903621
  7. Hornady 38 Special Ammo - 25 Rounds of 110 Grain JHP Ammunition

    54 In stock now

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    Image For 25 Rounds Of 110 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Hornady Ammunition
    $22.25 Price

    Qty:

    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady

    • New Condition
    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 89¢ Cost Per Round
    • Hornady SKU 90310
    • UPC 090255903102
  8. Winchester Super-X 38 Special +P Ammo - 50 Rounds of 125 Grain SJHP +P Ammunition

    6 In stock now

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    Image For 50 Rounds Of 125 Grain JHP Boxer Brass 38 Special Winchester Ammunition
    $45.00 Price

    Qty:

    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester

    • New Condition
    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester
    • American-made Discount Defense
    • 90¢ Cost Per Round
    • Winchester SKU X38S7PH
    • UPC 020892201323
  9. Winchester Silvertip 38 Special Ammo - 50 Rounds of +P 125 Grain JHP Ammunition

    4 In stock now

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    Image For 50 Rounds Of 125 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Winchester Ammunition
    $45.99 Price

    Qty:

    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester

    • New Condition
    • 50 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 92¢ Cost Per Round
    • Winchester SKU X38S8HP
    • UPC 020892201330
  10. Hornady 38 Special Ammo - 25 Rounds of 110 Grain JHP Ammunition

    36 In stock now
    Image For 25 Rounds Of 110 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Hornady Ammunition
    $23.50 Price

    Qty:

    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady

    • New Condition
    • 25 Rounds
    • Made by Hornady
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 94¢ Cost Per Round
    • Hornady SKU 90311
    • UPC 090255903119
  11. Federal Premium 38 Special +P Ammo - 20 Rounds of 129 Grain Hydra-Shok JHP Ammunition

    54 In stock now

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    Image For 20 Rounds Of 129 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Federal Ammunition
    $19.99 Price

    Qty:

    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Federal

    • New Condition
    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Federal
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 100¢ to $1.00 Cost Per Round
    • Federal SKU P38HS1
    • UPC 029465088323
  12. Winchester 38 Special Ammo - 20 Rounds of 130 Grain JHP Ammunition

    20 In stock now

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    Image For 20 Rounds Of 130 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Winchester Ammunition
    $21.99 Price

    Qty:

    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester

    • New Condition
    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • $1.10 Cost Per Round
    • Winchester SKU W38SPLD
    • UPC 020892220539
  13. Winchester 38 Special Ammo - 20 Rounds of 130 Grain JHP Ammunition

    51 In stock now

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    Image For 20 Rounds Of 130 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Winchester Ammunition
    $22.00 Price

    Qty:

    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester

    • New Condition
    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Winchester
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • $1.10 Cost Per Round
    • Winchester SKU S38PDB
    • UPC 020892217911
  14. Federal 38 Special Ammo - 20 Rounds of 110 Grain JHP Ammunition

    55 In stock now

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    Image For 20 Rounds Of 110 Grain JHP Boxer Nickel-Plated Brass 38 Special Federal Ammunition
    $24.00 Price

    Qty:

    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Federal

    • New Condition
    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Federal
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • $1.20 Cost Per Round
    • Federal SKU PD38HS3 H
    • UPC 029465092030
  15. Polycase Inceptor 38 Special Ammo - 20 Rounds of 77 Grain ARX Ammunition

    1 In stock now

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    Image For 20 Rounds Of 77 Grain Specialty Boxer Brass 38 Special Polycase Ammunition
    $29.99 Price

    Qty:

    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Polycase

    • New Condition
    • 20 Rounds
    • Made by Polycase
    • American-made Self-Defense
    • 77 Grain
    • Specialty Bullet
    • Brass Casing
    • Boxer Primer
    • $1.50 Cost Per Round
    • Polycase SKU 38ARXBRSP
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Since being introduced in 1898, the .38 Special cartridge has been a significant part of the world of firearms. This cartridge was designed to improve on the .38 Long Colt, which the U.S. military used at the time. The .38 Long Colt had limited stopping power and had proven ineffective against the wooden shields of the Moro tribesmen in the Philippines. More power was needed – enter the .38 Special.

The .38 Special grew from this need to become one of the most well-known and frequently used calibers in the world today. Discussions of the .38 Special will no doubt include references to the iconic .38 “Snubby” revolver. This pistol with a short barrel was often carried as a back-up gun in a pocket or calf holster by law enforcement and civilians alike. The .38 Special had a rich service life and was used by all branches of the military in the years between 1935 and 1985. Most frequently used as a self-defense and survival weapon by aircrew members, it was also issued as a duty sidearm to military police and security personnel.

The .38 Special is an accurate cartridge and has been popular among target shooters – with the revolver being the most common type of handgun for this cartridge. Another option is the Smith & Wesson Model 52, a semi-automatic pistol with a five-round magazine that can feed wadcutter bullets. The mild recoil of the .38 Special pleases practical pistol shooters, allowing shots to be fired in rapid succession.

Today, bullet weights for the .38 Special can be found ranging between 95 and 158 grains. Bullet types vary from wadcutter to round nose and hollow point. These cartridges generate between 150 foot pounds of muzzle energy on the low end, to almost 300 foot pounds at the high end. Commonly used for concealed carry, the .38 Special is available from many manufacturers in their premium self-protection lines. It is also worth noting that .38 Special cartridges can be used as a lighter recoiling, less expensive alternative to full-power magnum ammunition in .357 Magnum firearms.

The .38 Special has rightfully earned its place among the best firearms cartridges in the world through its qualities of accuracy, power, concealability and availability.

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