38 usac


Howdy , I have a few 38 S & W Specials with White and Black plastic cases with the headstamp, USAC 38 spl, I believe they are a quick reload round ,the White cases have flat nose bullets and the Black case round has a round nose bullet can someone please tell me what they were called and the years they were used and why the differant bullets thanks


I’m sure some others can flesh this out, but this was marketed as a cheap, easily reloaded (but only with the proprietary bullets) line. It is my understanding the plastic case was not reliable (?). All I’ve ever seen have been the white case . . . black case could be a prototype or short-lived variant? United States Ammunition Company / Corporation? Going on memory here . . . .


I’ve got some black plastic case 38 Spl. with the paint ball cup(projectile). Primer was the only charge, but they still stung like the dickens.


These were produced in the 1980’s. They came in white, black, red and blue cases. The cases were supposed to be color coded for different loads. As I remember, but I could be wrong, whte was 158 gr, FMG-RN, black was 158 gr. FMJ-FN WC, blue was FMJ-HP and red was SP.


slickrick - your black-plastic red-marking cartridge is not related to the USAC series of cartridges, which were live, ball ammunition. Your cartridge was made by SNC (Simunitions) in Canada, and was intended for police training. The police shoot these at each other, with the marker showing on their person when they are hit, to point out tactical errors they made that got them “killed.” They do sting like hell, but protective items are worn to protect the eyes, etc., when they are being used. They also come in 9mm Para (and perhaps other calibers), that caliber having a half-brass and half-plastic case. They are available in colors other than red. In 9mm, I have red, blue, green, yellow, orange and white. Simunitions also makes other cartridge types - a CQB load with black plastic bullet, a blank, and frangible loads, in 9mm. They make some .223s also. I don’t know what other loads, off hand, that they offer in .38 Special. I know that they have used, in that caliber, brass, plastic and aluminum (at least, a shiny silver-colored metal I think is almunim) cases.


Thanks for the indepth. I also have a few boxes of the 9MM variety, but only a few rounds of the .38 left. I also have a 12 Ga. “conversion” kit for the Remington 870 shotgun that allows for the use of the .38 round. As I recall, and correct me if I’m wrong, the AR15/M16 kit or conversion uses the 9MM round. I have fired an M16 version, and found it to be very jam prone. The variation in loads of the Simunition 9MM round wreaked havoc on the cycling. It tended to “sputter” and then jam. And all it took was one “bullet” breaking to muck up the works. I’m sure the semi-auto version would have been more reliable, but the ones we had access to were full auto only. And old. Which may have resulted in the less than reliable performance. For the “wars” we played, we were suited up in nearly SWAT team body armor coverage, but your arms and legs were only protected by sleeves and pants legs. Trust me on this, it was not near enough protection at close range. And some of my fellow “gamers” were wont to aim for the tender spots. On a side note, I recall, years ago, some outfit selling a primer powered .38 kit that shot wax(parrafin) bullets. An indoor target range thing. That’s about all I remember of it.


Here is some more information on the USAC (Untited States Ammunition Company) .38 Spl. loads. They were first made in 1982 in Seattle, Washington but then they moved to Tacoma, Washington. They went out of business in 1991.

The colors did not reproduce very well but are (left to right)
white, black, pale blue, red, pink & yellow. The original idea was, I beleive, to color code the bullet type, however all the bullets were interchangable in all the case colors.

This black & white picture shows the odd shape of the bullet base which which allowed it to snap into the cartridge with just finger pressure.


I have a fired one of these SNC training rounds in 9mm Luger. It held pink paint. Here is a picture from my site, with a ruler and regular 9x19 for scale. Headsatamp is: “SNC 9mm 95”


Falcon - I don’t think the pink is a separate color. These look more red when “splashed.” At any rate, whether pink or red is the right description, and I am open to both. They very in color shade a little from lot to lot, as the eye sees them through the plastic sabot, and are described on the box labels as “red.”


Mine is a fired case, you can see down inside the plastic sabot. It looks like it is neon pink paint in there to me. Maybe so you would want to get hit less, because you wouldn’t want your combat uniform to be covered in pink splats ;-).


Hi Ron , thanks for all the good info , interesting that none of those rounds show the round nose version that I have in the Black case Randy


More on Simunition (or SNC Technologies Inc.), head office, Quebec; USA office, Avon, CT.; Europe offcie, Bruxelles, Belgium.

Their motto


Pepper - the word I got on the blue-sabot CQ rounds from Simunition were that they were made for the French Police specifically. I don’t know if its true, but before I ever got a live one, I had a factory dummy with the blue sabot that was sent to me from France. Maybe one of our dear French friends (Phil Regenstreif, are you listening) can tell me if I’m wrong on this one too. (No offense Phil - I lke to get the straight scoop like anyone else, mon ami).