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Firing the iconic S&W Model 29

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Old 07-11-2014, 09:06 PM   #11
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A blued 6 inch Model 29 of one sort or another was the first .44 Magnum I ever fired, I think. I was shooting a Colt Cobra at a range in Austin and an older gentleman wanted to trade so he handed me his Smith, I handed him my Colt (an inherited piece from my grandfather), and I unloaded a dozen rounds or so at a 25 yard target.

I was amazed at how accurate it was and how little recoil it had compared to some alloy frame .357 Smiths I'd shot, as some of the snubbies I fired were actually abusive to my trigger finger. I expected something much worse with a .44 Magnum, but was pleasantly surprised. I asked him if his loads were watered down and he replied, "Nope, full power .44 Magnum." I remember it was a hefty piece of machinery. I've wanted one ever since, but couldn't justify the cost.
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Old 07-11-2014, 09:28 PM   #12
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Wow, this thread has led to tons of information.

Unfortunately, this was a rental, so I won't be doing anything else to it. I think the range owner might frown on me installing my own grips. At $1 a round, I probably won't be trying it out again anytime soon.

A friend of mine has a Ruger Redhawk and I think it's time to invite him to the range and give it a try. We can swap guns for a day.

After the Desert Eagle experience, which was actually 2 weeks prior to trying the Model 29, I wasn't expecting to like the Smith better. I really did though. I was a little intimidated because I had hurt my wrist recently and remembered my buddy who complained about the recoil. I really didn't feel much until about the 3rd cylinder. I think I do better with guns that have more of a "push" than a "flip". I also was firing after having put about 100 rounds of 9mm through two other guns plus magazine reloads, so my hands were already tired.

Still shot fine and still wasn't hurting. It was the additional 120 rounds through my Golani after the Smith that had me sore.

IF I were ever to buy a Model 29 though, I think I favor the 4" barrel. Just seems more practical.
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Old 07-12-2014, 04:37 AM   #13
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Default Firing the iconic S&W Model 29

Originally Posted by CrazedJava View Post
As a follow-up to Firing the Desert Eagle in .44 Magnum I rented the S&W Model 29 to compare.

The punchline is: There is no comparison.

I was expecting much worse recoil. A friend of mine described it as "punishing". The first round wasn't bad, but after a few cylinders I was starting to feel it.

The Desert Eagle looks cool to hold, has very light recoil, and a ridiculously large grip.

The Model 29 could use some Hogue grips but otherwise were solid, had a solid recoil, and looks like a fire breathing dragon when you pull the trigger. Seriously, the muzzle blast was impressive and I was using the exact same brand of ammo so there wasn't anything special going on. You look badass holding a Desert Eagle but you look badass FIRING the Model 29. It was awesome.

Surprisingly to me, I actually shot better with the Model 29 despite the heavy recoil. I was mostly doing single-action but I did try a few double-action shots. I didn't care for double action because the trigger break is a little unpredictable. Somewhat earlier than I was expecting and between the recoil and the muzzle blast that's a three-way surprise I don't enjoy. Even so, it was easy to handle.

The one knock I have to give it though is the extractor. The damn thing dumps the brass right onto your hand. I finally learned how to grip it to where it wouldn't do that, but between the size of the cylinder and the length of the brass it really just doesn't have any room to comfortably dump brass unless you shift your grip.

Other than that? Awesome. I think I preferred it to the Desert Eagle by far, which is good because it might actually be in my price range.

This makes me want a Model 29 a little more. Still having fun with a .357 Magnum.

Last edited by ICleanBrassWithJager; 07-12-2014 at 04:53 AM.
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Old 07-12-2014, 05:38 AM   #14
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I have shot my 629 with a few 300 grain XTPs pushed by H110. Massive Recoil.
I mainly shoot 240 grain bullets now.
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Old 07-12-2014, 05:39 AM   #15
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Ran a couple 629's with reg wood grips.
Aint bad (240 gr and lesser bullet weight-max loads though).

Hogues I like better, but they do grind on the hide a bit, takes a little time to get toughened up.

Don't care for ported 29/629.

Maybe if running 300's in bear country, for lesser muzzleclimb. Shot a guy's 329 PD and that thing was worst muzzle rise .44 I ever popped. Fun, and not bad with medium hot 250's...........but it did zoom up high, kinda like it had rocket boosters. Interesting sensation.

Get rid of that POS fiberoptic front and V rear and I might buy one
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Old 07-12-2014, 05:41 AM   #16
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All my 629's were non endurance package models, broke the trigger pivot on my first one when running 300's max'd. Smith fixed it fast and I stayed with 240's and under.

No probs after that.
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Old 07-12-2014, 05:42 AM   #17
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I'd be happy with .22 lr and .44 mag.......pretty bored with the in between stuff.
Have a .357, a decent one..................and it's a yawner.
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Old 07-13-2014, 02:47 AM   #18
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Bunch of years ago,
A friend from work saw an ad from Turners,
Model 29s, on sale.
So after work one morning we drove to my local Turners.
Looked at the 29,
I looked at the Redhawk.
He bought the 29
I bought the Redhawk.
of course we bought 44mag carts.
As soon as we could pick them up we drove to the desert to play with our new toys.
Fired a bunch of rounds and as you do,
hey, try this, here try mine.
I fired one round from the 29,
the trigger guard hit my finger, hurt like hell, left a Big knot on the finger, and was sore for several days.
that was my one shot with the 29
Not Knocking the 29,
it just did not fit my hand.
Loved shooting the Redhawk.
Now of course I soon switched to .44 spcl. .
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Old 08-11-2014, 04:15 PM   #19
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I have 2 29 a 6 and a 10 the 10 is a very good target gun I shoot it at 25 and 50 yards the 6 only at 25 yd.
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Old 09-02-2014, 06:10 AM   #20
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Changing the grips makes a it handle different, my strong hand has a skin graft on the palm so I use pachmayr gripper decelerator grips with finger grooves S&W N-Frame round rubber black butt
swapping my 629 factory wood grips makes it handle different just the way I like.
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