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Old 09-21-2009, 07:15 AM   #11
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After all of that a S&W J or k frame is the wheel gun you should look at. Get it in 357 mag and shoot 38spl rounds until you get use to the pistol. I would buy used as it will help with price. Best to find a range that rents and shoot as many as you can. By what you expressed this would he a home defense and range pistol. Look at a S&W 586, it's a six round 357 mag that will shoot 38 spl and serve you well. There are some Ruger models that are as good and expect some members will be along to tell you about them.

Good luck with your purchase, let us know what you decide to buy.

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Old 09-21-2009, 07:48 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by gadrooning
well by no means am I an expert, but I can answer some things for you here. A revolver is a good first gun. It is far more reliable than a semi-automatic and much easier to maintain. Don't get me wrong I have both and love them equally. It is not FAR more reliable than a semi automatic (unless its a cheap semi automatic) and is not easier to maintain. It is slightly more reliable and that is only because of the fact that semi autos can jam and can have miss feeds yet again this isn't likely if you dont get a cheap semi auto.

Jams can happen on any semi auto, a revolver will NEVER jam

Well the first thing I can advise you with is selecting a caliber 357 or 45. I think anyone can agree both are good man stopping calibers. I have both. Each to his own. However I will have to say that the 357 will be more accurate if you are looking to do some target shooting as well. It shoots flatter and faster. Also you have more choice of ammo and you can shoot the less expensive .38 caliber. The 45 is slower much bigger bullet, but just as effective for self defense.

I assume you know there is a 45acp bullet and a 45 colt bullet. These are two different rounds and they are both available now for revolvers. You will have to decide if you are going with the 45 acp bullet or the 45 colt. Most revolvers take the 45 colt, but there are a few manufacturers that make a revolver like Smith and Wesson that shoots a 45 acp out of a revolver, but you must have moon clips to shoot them. Moon clips prevent the 45 acp bullet from passing through the chamber since there isn't a lip on the end of the bullet like most revolver rounds. Otherwise the 45 acp bullet will slide through the cylinder and fall on the ground. Just so you know the cost of 45 acp bullets are not too far off from the 38. The 45 colts are much more expensive. Might want to take a note of this if you plan on shooting a lot.

A single action refers to a gun that can only be fired by pulling the hammer of the gun prior to pressing the trigger. If the hammer is down, you squeeze the trigger nothing happens.

A double action refers to a gun that can be fired only by squeezing the trigger. You cannot manually pull back the hammer of gun prior to shooting. Typically if a gun is just double action there will be no visible / external hammer.

A single and double action can be fired by either cocking the hammer and pulling the trigger or just pulling the trigger.

I would assume you would probably like the single and double combo. Especially if you plan on using the gun for self defense and target shooting as well.

It is totally your choice of manufacturers and brands. I personally like the smith and wessons. It will be a bit more pricey than other. Some like Tauras and so on. Just tailor it to your price point and what you can afford. Do not tailor it to the price you do not want a cheaply made handgun if you have to save up for it then so be it.

Word of advise, hold as many revolvers as you can. It is important that it feels good in your hands. It should feel like an extension of your arm, not a hunk of metal you are trying to hold straight.

Also pull the trigger of the revolvers. You will see a definate differences in trigger pulls from different manufactures. To not piss people off I will not mention brands. But first " Always, always check and see the gun is empty. Don't ever assume it is even if someone hads it to you. DO NOT PULL THE TRIGGER OF THE REVOLVER! NEVER DRY FIRE A REVOLVER YOU CAN HARM THE GUN! I own several revolvers and have dried fired them with out a single issue it is best to use snap caps when dry fire any pistol but it's a mith that dry firing a revolver effects the firing pin

You can always find a bargain for used guns, especially revolvers since there probably is less demand for revolvers than semi-autos, not because it is any way better just because of preference and some people view them as old school. Anyways if you are looking for a used gun, I suggest you tae someone with you that knows what to look for in a good maintained revolver. You'll have to look closley for gaps, cracks, loose cylinders, barrels, and just extra wear and tear before you buy a useed gun. Revolvers are in as high of demand as semi automatics. Un true most pistols purchases are for semi autos, at a 3 to 1 ratio
Additional advise if this is going to be your first hand gun, you might want to stay with at least a 4" barrel. Anything shorter makes it that much harder to see your progress when target shooting. Always a good idea to take some lessons on sight alighnment, stance, hold and trigger pull. hope this helps.

gadrooning offered factiual and truly good advice to the OP. Samples much love but come on, no experience to speak of considering the OP or gadrooning post. He did a fine job helping the OP and your rebut offered no vlaue. At best you tried to discredit him, why?

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Last edited by WDB; 09-21-2009 at 07:57 AM.
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:47 PM   #13
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First, I also think you should dry fire any revolver you are thinking of getting. The debate about whether this harms the gun will probably outlive us all, but I've never had a problem. An exception (autos, too) is a .22 because it's a rimfire, but you indicated you are looking at .45 and .357.

If you do dry fire, I recommend sighting on something. Then as you pull the trigger — and after! — check your sights to see if you are still on target. That will let you know if the trigger pull is taking you off target — a common occurrence when shooting double action. Dry fire it several (or more) times to see if you can bring that more under control and decide whether it's something you'll be able to work out once you own the gun or if it's going to drive you crazy. (Can you tell I'm a trigger fanatic?)

An earlier poster mentioned that you can shoot .38 in a .357 to save money. Please note that this is .38 special, not .38 S&W (though you're less likely to run across the latter). Also note that .38 special comes in regular loads, as well as +p and +p+. That gives you a lot of options.

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Old 09-21-2009, 10:18 PM   #14
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Some very good info already posted. Just to add my nickel's worth (inflation- used to be 2 cents) for a first revolver, you could do a lot worse than buying a Smith & Wesson in 357 magnum, such as a Model 66 type revolver. A 4-6" barrel is not as concealable as many other firearms, but gives good performance, and good accuracy. You can add grips that fit your hand/ taste, and .38 Special wadcutter target ammo is reasonably priced. There are fewer individual steps in firing a revolver than a semi auto, so by limiting the "human factor", reliability improves.

Try to find a range near you that RENTS handguns to try on that range. You may also find a dealer with good USED handguns for less than a brand new revolver. Are there cheaper handguns? Oh, my word, yes! However, you WILL get what you pay for, and if properly cared for, revolvers hold their value MUCH better than other things- like cars! I have one 357 that I have been shooting since 1976, and I am not even CLOSE to wearing it out.

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