LCR or J Frame for Pocket Carry?

This is a discussion on LCR or J Frame for Pocket Carry? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I am looking to get either a J Frame or a LCR for a pocket carry revolver. (Not interested in anything except for a revolver ...

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Thread: LCR or J Frame for Pocket Carry?

  1. #1
    New Member Array NoSheepHere's Avatar
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    LCR or J Frame for Pocket Carry?

    I am looking to get either a J Frame or a LCR for a pocket carry revolver. (Not interested in anything except for a revolver in this post.)

    Held and fired them both. One was a LCR with crimson trace, the others were 642 and 442 J frames with crimson trace. Couldnt remember which was smallest, but all 3 felt great shootin .38+p. Either can be had for my price range of - $550. Jeez yall. Which should I get. Any personal reccomendations? Anyone really prefer one over the other? Any own both and give me their ups and downs? This is only for pocket carry, and occasionally ankle carry. Any help would be appreciated.

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    Distinguished Member Array alachner's Avatar
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    First of all, an LCR is a J Frame. I think what you meant is whether you should buy the Ruger LCR or the Smith & Wesson 642/442. In terms of revolvers, you cannot go wrong with Ruger or Smith & Wesson so just pick whatever feels best in your hand.
    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. That's ridiculous... If I have a gun, what in the hell do I have to be paranoid for?" [Clint Smith - Thunder Ranch]

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    New Member Array NoSheepHere's Avatar
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    LCR is a J frame. Actually I was unaware of that. I just googled the heck out of it and learned something new. You are right though, I am torn betwen S&W or Ruger. They feel about equal. As far as finish, does anyone reccomend anything? That would help me narrow it down. I am in west Texas. Its 103+ pretty much every day. I sweat. I need someting that will stand up to that.

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    Distinguished Member Array alachner's Avatar
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    For West Texas concealed carry, I would definitely recommend you the stainless steel Smith & Wesson 642, since it will withstand better the salt in your sweat. Plus, the SS revolvers hide the scratches better than the blued revolvers and are easier to clean and take care off.
    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. That's ridiculous... If I have a gun, what in the hell do I have to be paranoid for?" [Clint Smith - Thunder Ranch]

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    VIP Member Array wmhawth's Avatar
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    I just got my LCR Monday and shot several varietys of 38Spl +P and standard pressure ammunition, totaling about 100 rounds. The J Frame S&W I have to compare it to is a 438. I'll give the nod to the Ruger on that one for ergonomics, trigger, felt recoil and overall shooting comfort. Both guns are accurate at SD distances. I did get the LCR in 357 Magnum but I intend to carry Buffalo Bore 38 +P 158 grain for SD. It's 2 oz heavier than the S&W and the Hogue Tamer Grip makes for a comfortable shoot.
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    Distinguished Member Array alachner's Avatar
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    Really nice J Frames wmhawth!!!
    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. That's ridiculous... If I have a gun, what in the hell do I have to be paranoid for?" [Clint Smith - Thunder Ranch]

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    Lets clear some stuff up. First, an LCR is not a J frame. The letters J,K,L,N are designations that Smith and Wesson use to differentiate between their frame sizes. Therefor, a Ruger is not a J frame. Granted, the LCR is very similar in size etc, that would be like saying a Chevy Silverado is built on a Ford F150 chassis. While similar, one is not the same as the other.
    Secondly, the difference between the 642 and 442 is mainly the color. The 642 does have a stainless barrel cylinder, barrel and yoke compared to the 442's chrome moly. There is complaints about the 642's clear coat finish pealing off after heavy pocket carry, but I don't know why that is. The only thing I can think of is the dissimilar metals (steel and aluminum) reacting with the moisture in sweat. Admittedly, that is pure speculation on my part.

    Anyway, I chose the 442 myself. Its been around forever and is a proven performer. I doubt you can make a wrong choice though between Ruger and S&W.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Senior Member Array mwhartman's Avatar
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    Praise the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle --- Psalm 144

    Ruger owners check our sister forum http://rugerpistolforums.com a great site to share and learn about your Ruger pistols.

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    I recently went through this quandry and sought advice on this forum just as you have. I was not able to fire the LCR or 642/442 but I spent considerable time handling and dry firing both at my LGS.

    It was not an easy decision but I went with the 442. The most deciding factor for me was the noticeable size difference since I intend to pocket carry. I also ordered a Crimson Trace LG-405 which was the most compact of the choices for the small j-frames. I also noticed a marked difference in the bore axis; the 442 being lower. I still would like to fire the LCR someday to see if the higher bore axis makes a difference in recoil.

    As others have stated, there is no wrong choice here.
    "We Dare Defend Our Rights", Alabama State Motto...

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    VIP Member Array MNBurl's Avatar
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    Easy one. 442 with CT 405... it is what I use.
    MNBurl

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    Member Array Jermedic's Avatar
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    I recently sold my LCR because it mostly sat in the safe. I picked it up mostly as a range toy, but did occasionally carry it. Mine had the standard grips. I also have a J frame model 37 which I often carry. My 37 is 28 years old and well broken in so the trigger on it is butter smooth. The LCR did IMO have the best out of the box trigger of any revolver I have tried. I found that the J frame carried much better for me than the LCR. The LCR frame is a little larger in the trigger guard area and the stock grips while great for shooting were too large for me to carry in a pocket. I am pretty thin tho at 5'10" and 130lbs so I think that may have a little to do with it. Also there was less aftermarket gear for the LCR. I had trouble finding a good holster that fit me. So since I could carry the 37 and didn't carry the LCR I got rid of it. The LCR was a great quality gun and it shot great, just didn't fill a role for me that the 37 did. You would be making a good choice with either, but you may find more aftermarket goodies for the S&W.
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    Distinguished Member Array alachner's Avatar
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    I also chose the Smith & Wesson 442 over the 642. For me it was a matter of looks, since I like the blued version better and both guns are pretty much the same. The Ruger LCR has a better trigger out of the box and it does not have a lock. Nonetheless, one can remove the lock and smooth the trigger with a spring kit.
    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. That's ridiculous... If I have a gun, what in the hell do I have to be paranoid for?" [Clint Smith - Thunder Ranch]

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    VIP Member Array zacii's Avatar
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    I chose a 442 over the LCR.

    Although they are similar in size, the 442 seemed a bit smaller to me.

    I found a used pre-lock j-frame, and it had a smoother trigger than the LCR, and a more natural feel to my hand.
    Trust in God and keep your powder dry

    "A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source

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    VIP Member Array Rollo's Avatar
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    I think the J frame is a bit smaller then the LCR if I remember correctly. The out of the box trigger on the LCR is amazing. If you don't mind the slight bit of added bulk. I would go with the LCR. If you don't mind a few ounces added weight I would go with the LCR in .357.
    -It is a seriously scary thought that there are subsets of American society that think being intellectual is a BAD thing...

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    Senior Member Array bunker's Avatar
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    I carry both a smith 442CT and a Smith 642 with custom wood grips. The CT grip is a little longer than the wood grips... i can get all three fingers on grip, and the rubber texture to the CT grip makes it less ideal for pocket carry. It is a tad too large for most of my pockets, so if i do pocket carry, i carry my 642 in a desantis nemesis pocket holster, but only because the grip is smaller, and the wood texture slips in and out of pocket easier. bunker
    "6 P's of self defense "
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