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Nostalgia - Rossi .38 Spl

ZeeZee Senior MemberPosts: 22,892 Senior Member
Back around ‘92, I bought my first revolver. I had a couple that my father had given me, but this was the first I’d bought myself. 
It was a Rossi M88 in .38 Spl. And looked like this. 

(Interweb pic)
I was working at a gun store and had a gentleman come in asking about pistols for defense. I ran through the gamut if available options and he asked what I was carrying. I had a modified Norinco 1911 I’d customized a little. I told him what I had and he said he wanted my gun. Advised him that we didn’t currently have any Norinco 1911s and he said, “No. I want YOUR gun.  If you are carrying it then you must like and trust it. So, I want your gun.”
A little baffled, I asked my boss if I could sell it to him and he said as long as he still filled out a 4473/background check and the store got a percentage, yes. 
I gave the guy a price that included everything I had in the gun and he said he’d buy it. Surprised, we started the paperwork and I unloaded the gun and gave it to him. While waiting on the background check, I went in back and got my “backup gun” the Rossi M88 and put it on my hip. When I came back out, the same guy asked what I had now. I told him and he said that he wanted that gun too!  Well.....ok. So, I sold it to him for basically the price of a new one and he didn’t balk. He passed the background check (which we were wondering about) and walked out with both my guns. 
Now, that Rossi was nothing special. But it was a neat little gun. Fast forward to yesterday and I see a used Rossi M685 (blued version of the gun I had) listed for a ridiculous low price on my LGS web site. I text my buddy and ask him what condition it’s in. He said it was about 80-85% finish with a couple surface rust spots but otherwise it seemed serviceable. 
Well, I stopped by today to look at it. Wiped it down and lubed it up a little.....seemed to work fine even though a little worn on the surface. 
Well, I’m not a .38 Spl fan and I know Rossi/Taurus are pretty much the same. But that revolver I had was kinda special to me and my Rossi Leverguns are pretty serviceable. 
For the price........I couldn’t pass it up. Even if all it ever shoots are snake loads and target wadcutters. I wanted the gun because it was a nostalgic memory for me and the trigger ain’t half bad. 
So.........she is in purgatory. 

Will clean her up better when I get her from the store. 
I’ll shoot the target wadcutter loads I have until I build up enough brass and then I’ll likely try some 125gr Speer Gold Dot handloads (non +p) through her. Work up something basic defense. 

Anyway, it’s kinda a piece of my firearms history and wasn’t a lemon. So, I thought I needed to grab it. 

"To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
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Replies

  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 3,798 Senior Member
    IIRC someone here (Bream?) has the same gun in .357 and I had a chance to shoot it.  It’s in permanent carry rotation.  No issues at all and I enjoyed shooting the little revolver.  Went bang as advertised and put all the holes where they belonged.  What else can you ask of a gun.

    Good to get your memories back!  Congrats. 🍾🥂
    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

  • sakodudesakodude Senior Member Posts: 3,648 Senior Member
    I keep eyeing the Rossi 740 44 spl revolvers. I’ve looked at a couple in the past year and they seem decently built.
    at the right price I’d not hesitate to buy one.
  • 2Aman2Aman Member Posts: 179 Member
    Cool story. Dad had the same Rossi you did and it was a staple in his tacklebox. I had a little Taurus 650 that I carried for two years awhile back. It was 100% reliable, never had an issue with it. A buddy talked me out of it but I wish I still had it. 
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 5,945 Senior Member
    It looks just fine.
    It should work well for tin cans and barn rats :)
  • mitdr774mitdr774 Member Posts: 1,324 Senior Member
    Little .38 revolvers are a riot to shoot.  Most of the time I shoot .38s out of my small .357 revolvers anyways.  Load them up with my puff load 148 WC loads and punch holes in paper while trying to not chuckle too much.

    Is there a backwards Matt's Bullets HBWC test in the future?
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    It might become a standard ranch gun for snakes. I thought I had some snake shot but I can’t find it in my cave. No surprise really. But, I do have a TON of this stuff to play with and make brass. 

    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    mitdr774 said:

    Is there a backwards Matt's Bullets HBWC test in the future?
    There is a possibility. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • SpkSpk Senior Member Posts: 3,608 Senior Member
    Let us know when it comes in. 👍

    I've had my share of nostalgic firearms but the one that stands out the most was my Mossberg bolt 12 gauge.
    It looked like this one below.
    (Not mine -- mine was stolen)
    It was a really fun gun and takes me back a few years. Nothing but dumb toothy grins whenever someone fired it. It was just fun! 😁
    These days I'd probably wouldn't have a chance to shoot it often so I can't get enthusiastic about getting another one. But I can appreciate the nostalgia.
    Beware of false knowledge -- it is often more dangerous than ignorance.
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,182 Senior Member
    Serviceable little revolver....
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • RugerFanRugerFan Senior Member Posts: 2,143 Senior Member
    Bought 1 for my wife around 92. 
  • Elk creekElk creek Senior Member Posts: 6,288 Senior Member
    Great story! Even better grab! 
    Aim higher, or get a bigger gun.
  • bullsi1911bullsi1911 Moderator Posts: 10,691 Senior Member
    The Rossi M88 you had is just like one that me and my brother bought to give my mom when we both were finally out and in college. It was a fun little blaster and I need to take it out and shoot it again. 

    Problem is- my mom hid it a while ago when one of the grandkids was coming over. We need to find it now. 
    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
    -Mikhail Kalashnikov
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 10,130 Senior Member
    Nice pick up
    I had one a long time ago, wish I still had it
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    The Rossi M88 you had is just like one that me and my brother bought to give my mom when we both were finally out and in college. It was a fun little blaster and I need to take it out and shoot it again. 

    Problem is- my mom hid it a while ago when one of the grandkids was coming over. We need to find it now. 
    Good to see I wasn’t the only one to grab one back in the day. When money was tighter and needs needed to be met. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • bullsi1911bullsi1911 Moderator Posts: 10,691 Senior Member
    Zee said:
    The Rossi M88 you had is just like one that me and my brother bought to give my mom when we both were finally out and in college. It was a fun little blaster and I need to take it out and shoot it again. 

    Problem is- my mom hid it a while ago when one of the grandkids was coming over. We need to find it now. 
    Good to see I wasn’t the only one to grab one back in the day. When money was tighter and needs needed to be met. 
    It was a totally 1992 rig. A stainless .38 snub loaded with Glaser Blues and clipped in a Don Hume leather belt rig or a custom made (by me) blue flowery and lace “bible cover” with cutouts for 2 speed loaders. 


    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
    -Mikhail Kalashnikov
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    Awesome!
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    Anybody handload for the .38 Spl in regards to defensive loads?

    What powder and bullets are you using?

    I don’t really have any powder options on hand but Unique and And Trail Boss. 

    I don’t really have any bullet options on hand except those HBWC I could turn around. I was thinking of ordering some 125gr Speer GD. 

    Open to suggestions. I probably have to order something. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 1,872 Senior Member
    edited May 20 #19
    Nice score!  I completely understand buying a gun for nostalgia.  That is why I bought my most recent purchase, a Brazilian CDC Model SB in 12ga because it was like the one I had as a teenager.  I can take a trip down memory lane just by pulling it out of the safe and holding it.....which reminds me....now that the range is back open I need to see if it shoots.
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 5,945 Senior Member
    I like Unique. But I load 158gr cast lead.

    2400 can duplicate old 38/44 loads. Likely ill advised in the Rossi....
  • JunkCollectorJunkCollector Posts: 278 Member
    edited May 20 #21
    I like those 148 wad cutters some of my favorite target ammo.

    Be careful with them.
    I hear they can come back and sting you.
  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 3,798 Senior Member
    Unique should be a good options since you don’t have a lot of barrel to work with.
    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

  • JKPJKP Senior Member Posts: 2,150 Senior Member
    I had one of those and gave it to my father in law assuming it will come back in time. He needed it more than me. Always thought it wa a solid piece for the money. 

    Does TX have a waiting period? You always mention purgatory when buying a gun. Seems odd for TX. 
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    JKP said:

    Does TX have a waiting period? You always mention purgatory when buying a gun. Seems odd for TX. 
    Layaway. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    edited May 21 #25
    I like those 148 wad cutters some of my favorite target ammo.

    Be careful with them.
    I hear they can come back and sting you.
    A good target round, I am still dubious as to its defensive utility unlike Eli was. He was easily swayed by YouTube Commandos  and flashy speaking instructors. 
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 12,060 Senior Member
    I just buy my self defense rounds and reload lead, I carry 3 speed loaders and a loaded gun with equal parts Speer Gold Dot, Hydrashocks, Eldorado Starfires, and Hornady Critical Defense, something will stick eventually
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 22,892 Senior Member
    I have thought about taking the easy route and just buying a box of defensive ammo. Not like I’ll be shooting a lot of it through the gun.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • CHIRO1989CHIRO1989 Senior Member Posts: 12,060 Senior Member
    Zee said:
    I have thought about taking the easy route and just buying a box of defensive ammo. Not like I’ll be shooting a lot of it through the gun.
    50-60$ goes a long way to trying different ammo, current Covid-19 pricing not included
    I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn away from their ways and live. Eze 33:11
  • JunkCollectorJunkCollector Posts: 278 Member
    I think the easy route on a short barrel 38 is the way to go.

    I chose the Hornady for my sister's little 38.
  • GunNutGunNut Posts: 3,798 Senior Member
    Zee said:
    I have thought about taking the easy route and just buying a box of defensive ammo. Not like I’ll be shooting a lot of it through the gun.
    You’ve never been a fan of .38 spl as a defensive round.  With all your current options this gun is probably more of a carry to the mailbox once in a while option.  How much effort do you want to put into load development?
    Old West Saying: God created men, but Col. Sam Colt made them equal.

    General George Patton:  “Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.”

  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 10,130 Senior Member
    GunNut said:
    Zee said:
    I have thought about taking the easy route and just buying a box of defensive ammo. Not like I’ll be shooting a lot of it through the gun.
    You’ve never been a fan of .38 spl as a defensive round.  With all your current options this gun is probably more of a carry to the mailbox once in a while option.  How much effort do you want to put into load development?
    It's all about science and science is fun
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
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