Modern Self-Defense: .357 Magnum
As we get ready to share our gun review of the Coonan Classic .357 Magnum 1911, I want to share some ballistics and history on this powerhouse self-defense cartridge and why many gun carriers trust their lives with it each day of the year. The .357 mag is a rimmed, center fired magnum cartridge that propels a .35 caliber projectile to astonishing speeds.
In fact, all of that powder sitting inside the magnum cartridge helps to push some of the hotter loads upwards of 1,800 feet per second as it leaves the muzzle. That’s faster than just about any other *reasonable* self-defense cartridge on the planet, with the exception of just a couple of others (like the .357 Sig, which I covered in a previous article).
The history of this classic round, started back in the 1930s, when Smith & Wesson set out to improve upon the .38 Special. The first revolver chambered in this venerable magnum cartridge, was sold to none other than J. Edgar Hoover, in 1935. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Today, the tradition lives on, only this cartridge isn’t limited to the revolver, anymore. You can find it in lever action rifles and carbines, like these ones from Henry Repeating Arms, as well as a very small number of semi-auto pistols, like those offered by Coonan Inc. Applications for this cartridge range from self-defense and law enforcement, to competition shooting and hunting.
Heck, even companies who’ve never before entered into the revolver market, have begun selling them chambered in .357 magnum, much like this Kimber:
There is almost no other cartridge more versatile than the .357 Magnum, and when you just need for an attacker or medium sized animal to hit the ground, there is almost nothing better to turn to. In fact, ammo makers have developed a wide range of grain sized bullets, with the most popular being the original 158 grains, and sizes generally starting in the 125 grain area.
Sound Off Gun Carriers! Let us know which guns you’ve got chambered in this hard-hitting round in the comments below. When you’re done with that, make sure you like the Gun Carrier Facebook page, so you never miss a beat!