The 357 Magnum calibre

The 357 Magnum is a straight-walled rimmed cartridge that is used mainly in revolvers, but also in some rifles for sports shooting or small game hunting. It was first produced in 1934, and its metrical denomination is 9x33 mm R. This ammunition is suited for quite a broad range of uses; it is perfectly suited for close combat, for which it was designed, for hunting and for target shooting. The 357 Magnum cartridge was designed jointly by Elmeir Keith and Smith & Wesson, as an extrapolation of the 38 Special. All weapons chambered for the 357 Magnum can be used to shoot the 38 Special since the latter simply had its socket lengthened by 3.429 mm. However, the reverse is not possible. The 357 Magnum is considered to be an excellent combat cartridge; this calibre enjoys the reputation of possessing the best stopping power of any hand gun ammunition. The 357 Magnum offers optimum ballistic performance with 8.10 grammes (125 grains) and 10.24 grammes (158 grains) semi-shielded bullets. When equipped with FMJ or Metal Piercing type bullets, it provides a high piercing capacity for a handgun ammunition. Now that revolvers have been extensively replaced by large capacity pistols in police forces, the 357 Magnum has been reduced to civilian use for target shooting. Winchester has lengthy experience with this calibre and offers several high-performance loads for a range of uses.

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