Smith & Wesson Governor

Discussion in 'Revolver Handguns' started by mag318, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. mag318

    mag318 Member

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    My local dealer received his allotment of the new S&W Governors today. I was hoping I wouldn't like it, I was wrong. From the photos I saw I thought the thing was ugly, but not so in person. This is a really neat revolver that feels very good in hand. Between the excellent ballance and the Hogue grips, the gun just feels right. The action is glass smooth with perfect timing. Being my first multi calibre handgun I'm looking forward to seeing how it shoots.
     

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  2. mesinge2

    mesinge2 New Member

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    I look forward to the range report. I might be selling my Judge.
     

  3. IGETEVEN

    IGETEVEN New Member

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    Indeed. As am I. :D

    You will be the first here that has acquired one. If I had a choice between a Judge and a Governor, I would pick the Governor hands down. :cool:
     
  4. mes227

    mes227 New Member

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    I'm on the wait list for one -- glad to hear your experience so far is positive.
     
  5. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    Yeah, it's not even an option for me as I couldn't own a Taurus, but in this case I know S&W targets serious folks only to take an interest in their take on this gun, shooters that desire quality and a 100% American made craft, rather than a foreign novelty that drew countless folks, many of whom bought the "Judge" as their first firearm. . . period.

    You can also rest easy that Smith and Wesson has had plenty of time to work out the bugs and was in NO rush to compete. :)
     
  6. mag318

    mag318 Member

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    I made it to the range today with two friends who are also retired LEOs. First off let me say that the Governor was a lot of fun to shoot and performed flawlessly with everything we put thru it. My biggest concern was how 45 acp would do out of such a long cylinder, these concerns proved groundless. We loaded up several full moon, half moon and the 1/3 moon clips that came with the gun, starting with Federal 230 grn ball ammo. I believe this is what S&W regulates the sights with. Starting at 5 yards we shot at an all white reversed silouette putting a ShootnSee small sticker as the target. The Governor shot exactly to the point of aim with 6 shots grrouping into one jagged hole and obliterating the stick on. Moving back to 7 yards the results were the same. Next we moved to 10 and 15 yards and the groups started to open up a bit but were still under 4". Considering this is not a target revolver and the barrel is only 2 3/4", I'll take this kind of accuracy anyday. We shot the following 45 acp ammo
    150 rnds Federal 230 grn Ball
    50 rnds Federal 230 grn HST
    20 rnds Winchester 230 grn PDX1
    All this ammunition shot to point of aim out to 15 yards.
    Next came some 45 Colt with first up being Winchester 250 grn Cowboy loads. This stuff shoot tight goups like the ACP but grouped just slightly higher. We fired.
    50 rnds Winchester 250 grn lead Cowboy loads
    50 rnds Winchester 255 grn lead standard loads
    20 rnds Remington 225 grn LSWHPs
    20 rnds Speer 200 grn GDHPs
    The Governor has a preference for jacketed ammo but for defensive purposes the lead was fine and great fun to shoot.
    Now for the fun stuff 410s.
    We started off with an assortment of Federal and Winchester Game loads with No 9,8 and 6 shot. Shooting at a B1 silouette at 5 yards is shot a wide pattern. Moving closer to 3 yards it tightened up considerably. Back to 10 yards the pattern was larger than the target. Next shooting performance ammo Winchester PDX1 and Federal 000 buck was very impressive. This stuff would be very deadly at close range and would be great for home defense. We shot.
    24 rnds each of Winchester and Federal game loads with 9, 8 and 6 shot. This would be great for snakes, birds and zombies at close range. If you shot any of the zombies in the face their eyes would be gone and the rest shreaded. It's nasty to think of what that would do to even a charging beast if you hit it in the face.
    20 rnds Federal Handgun 000 copper plated Buck consisting of 4 pellets. This was a fairly hot load and would definately ruin a zombies day.
    20 Winchester PDX1. This has has 3 flat disks followed by several BB size shot, and was the most devastating 410 load shot.
    I have to say this new Governor was just plain fun to shoot and my two friends are going to my dealer Monday to buy one each (hope they're not all gone). Even though the Scadium frame is light it handled the recoil comfortably, the Hogue grips felt perfect. The only thing ending or range session was running out of ammo. For fun we were shooting hand tossed clay pidgeons from 10/15 feet which was fun. We also shot some gallon waterjugs at 25 yards with 45 Colt and ACP ammo.
    Conclusions.
    Smith & Wesson built a quality revolver here that was much more accurate than I expected.
    The trigger was very smooth with perfect timing double action and very crisp single action.
    Extraction with 45 acp was flawless due to the cartridge length. Some of the 45 Colt cases had to be pulled out as were all the 410 cases.
    The fixed sights were perfectly regulated for 230 grn 45 acp ball ammo.
    The front night sight was a nice touch.
    My only regret was forgetting to bring my camera but that will be rectified on the next outing. And again I have to say what a fun revolver this is to shoot. A lot of people think 410/45 revolver are a worthless fad and to those I say, shoot the Governor then see what you think. I'm impressed.
     
  7. wmille01

    wmille01 New Member

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    what is the difference between the judge and the Governor?
     
  8. mag318

    mag318 Member

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    The Governor is a 6 shot revolver opposed to the Judges 5. The S&W has a state of the art scandium frame and a much smoother action. The Judge was the first truly successful 410/45 revolver although there were one or two before it. And the Judge is probably the most popular revolver in the Taurus line with about a dozen versions. I have a 3" steel framed Judge also and can't fault it, I just like the new Governor better.
     
  9. WDB

    WDB New Member

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    If I read the above report correctly The Smith is shooting 45 ACP, the judge doesn't as I recall.

    Great report Mag
     
  10. diggsbakes

    diggsbakes New Member

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    One's a Smith and Wesson. . .

    If that's not enough, the Governor uses ACP rounds and carries 6. Another big difference is that I never even thought about owning a Judge and I really would like a Governor. ;)
     
  11. spittinfire

    spittinfire New Member Supporter

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    Great report! I'm still not sold on the 410 handgun idea but the Governor at least makes it a platform worthy of trying.
     
  12. Trez

    Trez Well-Known Member

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    This takes moon clips?! Nonsense!!... Hasnt technology advanced further than that.... :p
     
  13. mag318

    mag318 Member

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    Actually halfmoon clips make great speed loaders. The Governor come with full moon and 2 shot 1/3 moon clips. I know the more I shoot this revolver, the more I'm goig to like it. Speaking of technology, revolvers are very old tech but still useful. And what Ilike about that old technology is that it's either loaded or not, and no worries as to how many in the magazine or is one up the spout. I carried a Model 60 with me everyday in Viet Nam then thru my 31 LEO career I carried a J frame backup. Now long retired I still carry a Smith 5 shot revolver everywhere. That one is the new polymer Bodyguard in 38 Special that I really shoot well. I guess I'm an old guy who still likes old tech revolvers.
     
  14. Trez

    Trez Well-Known Member

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    Im just messin with ya' cause my revolver doesnt need 'em..... I can even mix & match ammo... :p
    I think all the new multi-calibers should use Phillips design.....
     
  15. Mandy

    Mandy New Member

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    Page 28 of the online revolver owners manual from S&W states the following

    "*45ACP AMMUNITION REQUIRES THE USE OF 2-ROUND OR FULL MOON(6-ROUND) CLIPS. HALF MOON (3-ROUND) CLIPS SHOULD NOT BE
    USED IN THE GOVERNOR™ REVOLVER."


    It doesn't make sense to me, but now that you have it, it may or may not make sense to you, please advice your opinion after using halfmoon clips.

    Did the revolver came with them?

    Also page 29 says:

    "Full moon and two-round moon clips are provided with the S&W Governor from the factory. Additional or replacement moon clips
    can be purchased from the S&W Website or by calling the
    Customer Service Department.
    45 ACP should only be used in the S&W Governor with moon clips.
    Cartridges should not be loaded into the cylinder without either 2-
    round or 6-round moon clips."


    My point is: If you can use 2 rnd clips and can use fullmoon clips, why S&W would disapprove 3rnd clips?
     
  16. mag318

    mag318 Member

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    Trez, I have a Model 547 9mm that doesn't need clips either, but that was a really expensive ejection system to manufacture.
    Mandy, Come to think of it when we did use halfmoon clips they were very tight going in and out. I think there may be a slight dimensional difference with the Governor cylinder and the 1917/1955 Models cylinder. The full moon and the 2 shot I call 1/3 moon clips worked with ease. That said the halfmoon clips we used did work though.
     
  17. Mandy

    Mandy New Member

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    I can understand that, but I can't understand why S&W didn't made a half moon clip specially designed for the governor............

    This revolver woke up my desire for another revolver, to bad davidsons has a back order............. oh well I'll have to wait some more
     
  18. mag318

    mag318 Member

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    Mandy, that's a great question. I was surprised to see the 2 shot clips that came with my Governor. I'm sure this revolver is going to be a huge seller for them so you have to wonder why no halfmoon clips. Doesn't make sense. My dealer use to be a huge S&W distributor that still has close ties to the company. I'm going there this afternoon and have them pose the question to S&W.
     
  19. mag318

    mag318 Member

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    Mandy,
    I got my owners manual out and it does state not to use halfmoon clips. So I dug out my Governor and I thing I figured out why. The rear of the cylinder has a counterbore type relief cut to accomodate the full moon and two shot clips. The older halfmoon clips are cut a little differently so as not to fit inside this counterbore. The halfmoon clip I had worked but they did fit inside the counterbore. I think they are worried about older halfmoons from older guns not fitting. These clips I don't remember where I got them and even what they were for but they were cut differently from WW1 style clips. So all I can say it if you buy a Governor try your halfmoon clips and see if they fit or not. You'll see the releived portion in my photo, the newer clips go right in as do my aftermarket halfmoons, but older ones will not. All halfmoon clips are not the same and S&W advised against using them because of this. I'm sure though they'll be coming out with an appropriate halfmoon clip. The halfmoon clips I used looked like fullmoon clip cut in half clipping the cartridge rim from the inside not the outside like the older clips.
     

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    Last edited: Jun 7, 2011