Smith and Wesson Governor

This is a discussion on Smith and Wesson Governor within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; IMO the Judge/Gubna are not well suited to a defensive role for all of the above mentioned reasons. I think they are a complete gimmick. ...

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Thread: Smith and Wesson Governor

  1. #16
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    IMO the Judge/Gubna are not well suited to a defensive role for all of the above mentioned reasons. I think they are a complete gimmick. OP if you can change your choice I would do it ASAP.
    aus71383 likes this.
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  3. #17
    Senior Member Array zamboni's Avatar
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    Upon first glance........

    People are enthralled with its hugeness. As in The Bigger The Better syndrome

    But as a SD firearm. And due to its caricaturist: The ONLY real round out of the three, in that category that it is capable of throwing is the 45colt. YMMV

    And it may only be limited to using the tamer end of that round. If you are looking for a nostalgic firearm to hear ooh la la's and whoa baby...what is that? Then by all means get one. But if you TRULY are looking for a good SD-CCW. Then there are FAR better choices!

    Now not to say I wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of any 45acp boo let either, I'm just saying there are some better SD-CCW for everyday carry

  4. #18
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    I've always thought of the Judge and Governor as gimmick guns that don't do anything as well as guns built for a specific caliber. They're versatile, and I guess that's their niche. Just my $0.02.
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  5. #19
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    Many people have many reasonable opinions. Based on the well documented ballistics tests,pattern tests, and accuracy reports, you ca be reasonably confident that any human that you hit with 410 buck or 45 out of a Governor within 30ft will have a very, very bad day. Penetration of the 410 buckshot from a Gov is very good and spread of the modern hangun loads is pretty tight.. Research it. I don't own one. Where some insist on terms like gimick, I think versatile is a good description. "Better" is a term thrown around on every forum about guns. In real life circumstances, there are too many variables to be able to say one thing is better than another. I will concede that where I can see a Gov being a perfectly reasonable home or open carry firearm, buying for concealed carry would have many challenges.

  6. #20
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    Every time a Judge/Governor thread is posted, lots of folks jump in and claim they are not effective as SD weapons and even go so far as stating they are "gimmicks".

    When reading these posts, I have to wonder how many of these people have even fired a Judge/Governor or tested their effectiveness, or just post what they've read on the internet. I have seen with my own eyes what happens to various targets when hit with a Judge from various loads. In EVERY self defense class have I have taken, the instructors emphasize that the primary purpose of a handgun used for self defense is to stop a threat and allow you to escape and get to a long gun if necessary.

    I am confident that a load of #4 shot to the face of an attacker at close range will buy me the time I need to get me to my next option, even if it's from a 3" barrel. As with any gun/caliber/load/bullet type, shot placement always wins. Most people have never been involved in a SD shooting, that is a fact. In a real life SD scenario, training and adrenaline have profound effects on accuracy. #4 shot absolutely forgives SOME inaccuracies IMHO; regard my opinion as you should with most found on the internet.

  7. #21
    Senior Member Array Landric's Avatar
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    I don't own a Judge or a Governor, but I will admit that I am intrigued by the Governor. I have plenty of other guns for carry and/or self-defense, and the Governor wouldn't be my first choice for that because of its size.

    That said, I wouldn't sneeze at any .45 ACP revolver, or .45 Colt revolver. I think the .410 bore is extremely overrated. We are talking about a shotshell that isn't much out of a long gun, I wouldn't expect anything from the same cartridge out of a snubbie revolver barrel. That doesn't mean it couldn't be lethal or otherwise effective, it just isn't ideal. I think a lot of people see the power of shotgun cartridges like the 12 gauge and think that somehow translates to the .410. It doesn't. I've even seen people recommend using .410 slugs for defense. A .410 slug weighs about 87.5 grains. A .45 Colt cartridge fires a similar diameter projectile at a similar velocity that weighs about three times as much. Clearly the .45 Colt is a much better cartridge for launching single projectiles. The same goes for the .45 ACP to a slightly lesser extent.

    I had a Bond Arms derringer for a while for which I had both .45 ACP and .45 Colt/.410 barrels. The .45 ACP was easily the most effective, losing nothing in velocity to other .45 ACP handguns with similar barrel lengths. On the other hand, the Federal "Handgun" 2 1/2" 4 pellet 000 Buck averaged a whopping 611 fps and about 232 ft-lbs of muzzle energy. I would expect a little bit more velocity from a Governor because of the longer barrel, but probably not a huge improvement.

    All that said, conventional wisdom says that the huge majority of handgun uses in self-defense don't involve any shots fired. The Governor is nothing if not intimidating looking. It is a perfectly capable .45 ACP or .45 Colt revolver, if somewhat large for that role. If one can find a way to conceal it effectively, and makes the right ammunition selection, it is a fine defense gun. I would suggest that one just not have too much confidence in the .410 bore as a defensive cartridge.
    -Landric

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  8. #22
    VIP Member Array 10thmtn's Avatar
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    The more good folks carry guns, the fewer shots the crazies can get off.
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  9. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Landric View Post
    I would suggest that one just not have too much confidence in the .410 bore as a defensive cartridge.
    Each 00 buckshot projectile from a 410 has the same velocity and energy as the same 00 buckshot projectile out of a 12 ga. Only difference in in the number of projectiles. From a pretty in depth review on thetruthaboutguns.com:

    The four 73-grain .36 caliber pellets consistently hit within four inches of each other. Traveling at 850 fps from a 2.5-inch barrel, they collectively deliver about 468 lb-feet of energy with multiple wound channels. This single round would produce nearly the same trauma and incapacitation as a half-magazine full of .380 ACP hardball.
    I think that is a pretty effective single shot impact. What is it about all the examples of ballistics out there on the short barrel Governor (velocity, energy, penetration) that suggests it is not an effective tool for the purpose intended?

  10. #24
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    One thing confirmed with that review was that a single trigger pull delivered five 000 buck projectiles to a depth of 9 to 12 inches penetration. One shot, 5 large projectiles to lethal depths. Just think if you pulled the trigger a second time. It also confirmed that 410 ammo made specifically for short barreled revolvers shoots to point of aim with closer patterns than standard 410 loads for long guns. So, for anyone with a Judge or Governor, make sure you use the ammo that was designed with you gun in mind.

    I do get the basis for opinion and bias against these guns, but I am not seeing facts that would support that they are not well suited for dispatching of a threat or taking out a bad guy. The evidence from many fronts seems to support that they would do quite well for most real like circumstances that warrant an actual firearm discharge for defensive purposes.

  11. #25
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    The Governor is a perfect example of a great company with an indisputable reputation for making the best revolvers mass produced in the world, allowing greed to make them pursue too many venues, and become a copy cat company who no longer relys on innovation.

    Don't buy the damn thing. Get a real revolver.
    aus71383 likes this.
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  12. #26
    Senior Member Array zamboni's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by glockman10mm View Post
    The Governor is a perfect example of a great company with an indisputable reputation for making the best revolvers mass produced in the world, allowing greed to make them pursue too many venues, and become a copy cat company who no longer relys on innovation.

    Don't buy the damn thing. Get a real revolver.
    Kudos glockman10mm!
    Yep....the only round it would be affective spewing is the 45colt and for a revolver of this size REALLY ONLY having one reliable boo let out of three, there are many many many MANY more better choices for an ED-SD-CCW.

    For instance if you'll consider trying to DC a Governor get a Glock G20....now there's a real mans SD-ED-CCW

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