The .38 Smith & Wesson Special, also commonly known as .38 S&W Special, .38 Special, .38 Spl, .38 Spc, (pronounced "thirty-eight special"), or 9x29mmR is a rimmed, centerfire cartridge designed by Smith & Wesson. It is most commonly used in revolvers, although some semi-automatic pistols and carbines also use this round. The .38 Special was the standard service cartridge for the vast majority of United States police departments from the 1920s to the 1990s, and it was also a common sidearm cartridge used by United States military personnel in World War I, World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam War. In other parts of the world, it is known by its metric designation of 9×29.5mmR or 9.1×29mmR.Known for its accuracy and manageable recoil, the .38 Special remains one of the most popular revolver cartridges in the world more than a century after its introduction. It is used for target shooting, formal target competition, personal defense, and for hunting small game.

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