Should I give revolvers a 2nd chance?

Discussion in 'Revolver Handguns' started by Grog, May 18, 2010.

  1. Grog

    Grog New Member

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    Long story shortened...I have only been shooting 4 times in 30 years. Want personal defense/home/ccw. Wife is interested also. I have big hands. Wife has big hands. Wife does not want shotgun.

    We went to a range this weekend and wound up going through a total of 8-9 different guns. Some we rented, some other people rented and one guy brought his...including a S&W 44 (holy poop!!!)

    We started with an LCR and a S&W 38 snubbie (I forget the model) with crimson trace grips. I was able to hit the target with the LCR but it was terrible to fire. I could not see the sights at all...completely useless with a black target. The recoil was very unpleasant(this was with 38 rounds not 38+P). The S&W was a little better only because it had a laser. My wife hated them and I did not like them either. I really appreciate the advice to go and fire some guns.

    Round 2 was a S&W 10mm pistol ( I think...it was my buddies) and .357 model 60-3 inch barrel. Much better. My wife shot the 357 very well with no discomfort. The pistol seemed big and heavy but ok.

    Round 3 was a Glock 26 and 27. Now we're talking. I can group in a 5 inch circle at about 1/3 range length(I dont know how far...experienced buddy set the distance) and hit the sillouette consistantly at 2/3 range length. My buddy (21 years in the Army) was very impressed and says we know what I like. Very nice, fun to shoot, can see sights easily with both.

    Round 4, S&W M&P 40 full size with crimson trace and THE 44. My wife shot the M&P very well. She had one series of shots with a grouping the size of a coffee cup (about 6 inches off center)...I shot it about the same as the Glocks but the laser was a little distracting.

    The 44 mag was just insane. Half the people in the range stopped shooting and watched. I wish we would have taped shooting it.

    Just think how long the long version would have been...sorry.

    Here is my question. Should I give the snubbies another chance? They were the first guns we shot but neither of us liked them...at all...but they sure are small.

    Grog
     
  2. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    Snubbies are an acquired taste and they are not meant to be fun range guns. No little gun with hot ammo is particularly fun to shoot but they do serve a great purpose. Since you want a single gun for multiple uses, some compromise will be necessary. Perhaps you should split the difference between a full size and a snubbie and look at a 3 inch revolver. Easier to control than a snubbie and not terribly difficult to conceal. A good .357 Magnum gives you a lot of options ammo wise from light .38 Specials to full house .357 Magnum loads. Here's the gun I've owned the longest in my collection (an inside joke), a S&W 686+ 7 shot, 3 inch .357 Magnum...

    [​IMG]
     

  3. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    You could purchase after market grips to try and have a snubbie work for you. I have found that a revolver is great for someone who does not want to become an expert, but still has a requirement for a firearm. Cleaning is easier, loading is easier, no thumb safety, cheaper investment, and can keep loaded without worrying about spring compression. If you become well versed in handguns (and are willing to put in the time and effort), then by all means, go semi-auto.
     
  4. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    Can't really agree with any of these statements as revolvers are a PITA to clean, slower to load (without speedloaders), good ones are expensive, and mag springs don't suffer from compression. Sorry to be critical but facts is facts...
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2010
  5. Jo da Plumbr

    Jo da Plumbr New Member

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    If you like the autos, shoot well with the autos, and have a wife comfortable qwith an auto, what's the problem???:confused:
     
  6. Grog

    Grog New Member

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    We did shoot the S&W 357 model 60 with a 3 inch barrel. It looked very similar to your photo. A very nice gun. My wife would be ok with that one.
     
  7. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    The S&W 60 is a J-frame and mine is an K/L frame. Main difference is a bit of size and weight and the fact that K/L frame triggers are much smoother than J-frames as they use a leaf vs a coil mainspring. As Jo said, if you're happy with a semi-auto then by all means get one. I have both and my home defense guns are both revolvers...
     
  8. Franciscomv

    Franciscomv New Member

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    That's a great gun. J frames are very easy to carry, and the 3" versions are easier to control and take better advantage of the .357 rounds. If you like that one, you might one to try a Ruger SP101 with a 3" barrel. It's a bit bigger and heavier, built like a tank.

    Like NGIB said, the 686 he showed is a good deal larger than a J frame model 60.

    Here's a pic of a J frame (640) and a 4" 686, so you can see the size difference.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. steve666

    steve666 New Member

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    The only thing I'll add is that you can carry in you pocket with one of the concealed hammer/hammerless snubbies and in an emergency actually fire it without removing it from your pocket without having it jam.
     
  10. Grog

    Grog New Member

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    I just wasnt sure we gave the 38's a fair chance. First time at a range in at least15 years and we (I) figured to start small and work our way up. I can tell you that my buddys (army 21 years) daughter (who is 13) tried the LCR and one shot caused her pain. Her smallish hand turned red and swelled up with a noticable red mark. She wound up not shooting anything else.

    I just dont want to wind up with 5 guns...at least not yet.:D

    Grog
     
  11. Jo da Plumbr

    Jo da Plumbr New Member

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    I have five semi-autos now and am thinking of a S&W 357 revolver.

    Just to be an equal opportunity gun nut.
    :rolleyes::eek::D
     
  12. NGIB

    NGIB New Member

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    Soon you'll pass me up Jo...
     
  13. utf59

    utf59 New Member

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    Quite a few people who own J-frames and LCRs don't use them as their primary range guns. They practice a lot on something else and a little on the pocket gun. They typically aren't the most fun to shoot a lot of rounds through. But when the time comes that you really need it, you probably won't even notice the recoil.

    If you still want to consider revolvers, look at a Ruger SP101. It's small(ish) but has a heavier frame than the J-frames and the LCR. So it'll be more comfortable to shoot, but heavier to carry.

    If you like the Glock 26 and 27 (my wife carries a 27, BTW), those are excellent choices. If you're trying to get the size/weight down a little more, there Kahr and Walther make single-stack, polymer frame pistols that you might want to look at. Also, if you're looking for one gun that both of you can enjoy, you might want to check out the S&W M&P. It has changeable backstraps so you can adjust the size of the grip to better suit you and your wife.

    So, it looks like you came here for answers and got more questions. :confused:

    My last bit of advice is that if you have tried all the guns you are going to be able to try, go with the one that you shot well and that felt good.
     
  14. Jo da Plumbr

    Jo da Plumbr New Member

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    Not a chance friend. I'm a hoarder. Never sold a gun in my life. I don’t understand you selling trading guys.:confused::eek:.
     
  15. CA357

    CA357 New Member Supporter

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    The Glock 26 is a subcompact 9mm. Take a look at the Glock 19. it's a compact and larger than the 26, but still not as large as the full size model 17. It's my personal opinion that the G19 is the best Glock ever made.

    For a revolver, take a look at either a Ruger SP101 or a S&W J frame with a 3" barrel. The SP101 has a 2.25" barrel and is heavier than the J frame Smith. Recoil is lessened by its weight. Both are available in .357 and you can practice with .357's, but shoot mostly .38's to keep costs down a bit.

    I am not suggesting anything in .327 magnum as it's still a newer caliber and ammo is a bit pricey.
     
  16. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    I am a revolver fan (I own 9). Revolvers are a good choice for home defense. Simple, reliable, accurate and powerful. The criteria fro a concealed carry revolver are very different than that of a home defense revolver. Smaller is not necessarily better. Smaller means more recoil, shorter sight radius, reduced capacity (5 instead of 6 or 7) too small grips (unless you change them out) and less than ideal trigger.

    IMHO a good 4" 6 or 7 shot .357 Magnum is the baseline that everything else is judged from. Every gun collection should have at least one such revolver.

    I am certainly not adverse to semi-auto pistols (I have 8). Additional training is needed to gain the confidence (and competence) in the use of a pistol.

    Look at a S&W M-65. The 3" version has a round butt and can be made very compact. The 4" version has a square butt the same size as a K or L frame (M-66/M-686) that can be outfitted with a wide variety of grips from compact to very large oversize target type.
     
  17. NPD5946TSW

    NPD5946TSW New Member

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    I gotta agree with Joe on this one.... If you're comfortable with the autos, and found specific models you both like and are in your price range, I'd roll with it! I'd tell you to stick with snubbies if you said you and your wife loved them and weren't comfy with the autos.... Comfort can play a big roll in early stages of shooting.
     
  18. DrumJunkie

    DrumJunkie New Member

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    I'm not sure what wear a compressed spring suffers. I'm well known for finding mags that have been loaded for up to a year or more in my safe and I"ll take them out to empty them the fun way. They all have work fine and still do to this day.

    As to cleaning I can not understand how cleaning out 5-6 chambers in a cylinder and a barrel is easier than cleaning one. But to each teir own I guess. As to loading I see no way a revolver is easier without a speed loader or moon clips if they are needed.

    I will agree that a revolver is pretty easy to shoot and one can get away with substandard cleaning a pretty long time nad have the weapon still function. You also can have revolver specific issues like timing that you will not have with a semi.

    The only way to recommend any weapon to any single person is to get as many in their hands as they can. That way they see what fits them the best. I do not believe in the BS about capacity being I have not known anyone personally that has needed a full 9mm mag other than LEO and that is not often. So a 5, 6 round cylinder is fine and you can use a loader in a wheel gun if that is the weapon that fits the shooters needs best. But it all depends on what fits.

    All you have on your hands is an overpriced paperweight if the shooter is not 100% comfortable with the weapon. That means platform, caliber, and capacity. And if you can read a manual you can take down about any handgun that is out there to clean and maintain it properly. Look at a Glock, they do not get much easier than that. I learned the ways around a 1911 long before I was old enough to own one.

    Bottom line is if you are going to go out to purchase something that can take a life you really owe it to yourself and loved ones to know how to use it. It's not a game and there is no reset. It's a really big deal. While I'm all for people being able to own a firearm they are not for everyone. If one does make the choice to own one (or some) then do what's right. Learn the skills to be able to handle it properly. And be sure to get the right one for you.
     
  19. Gojubrian

    Gojubrian New Member

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    [​IMG]

    This is my LCR with crimson trace grips. I bought it as a back-up gun for carry and not a range gun. It is a little hard on the hands to shoot too much, just try the +p's! But, this thing is easy to carry, reliable,and very accurate. The double action trigger can be indexed to single action before firing. It is the smoothest double action trigger I have ever fired.

    I would like to get a smith 60 or ruger sp101, but I'll have to wait a while.

    If you are going to carry the LCR is hard to beat for a ightweight revolver. If you want a range gun or home defense go with the 60. :)
     
  20. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    I have more semi-autos than revolvers, and I agree with going with what you like and are comfortable with. Each platform has good points and bad. Safety and knowledge are more important that 5 rounds versus 18. Even if you don't carry concealed, I would recommend a firearms course.