S&W 686+ 2.5" or 4" - Page 2

S&W 686+ 2.5" or 4"

This is a discussion on S&W 686+ 2.5" or 4" within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; The real answer is what do you want? There is not a tremendous amount of difference between the 2. How you are going to carry ...

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Thread: S&W 686+ 2.5" or 4"

  1. #16
    VIP Member Array Bad Bob's Avatar
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    The real answer is what do you want? There is not a tremendous amount of difference between the 2. How you are going to carry it makes a difference. I have found that a 4" conceals just as well as a snubbie in a shoulder holster or belt with a suitable cover garment. A 686 weighs about the same as an N frame 44.
    My rifle and pistol are tools, I am the weapon.

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  2. #17
    VIP Member Array matthew03's Avatar
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    I owned a 2.5" 686+, if I had purchased the 4" I would probably still own a 686+. The short Bbl. isn't optimal for the .357. The fireball generated on an indoor range draws quite a bit of attention. That gun was a great way to get alone time on ranges as well, shoot a cylinder full of hot .357's and everyone would go home.

  3. #18
    Member Array Jambie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stanislaskasava View Post
    I think the 4" 686 is perfectly designed and balanced. When you pick it up, it practically aims itself -- wherever you point, the sights are already lined up. I think everyone should own a 4" 686.
    What he said. I have the older six shot, 4" version, and can conceal it easily in my Simply Rugged pancake holster. Imho, the 4" .357, whether it be S&W, Colt, or Ruger, is the ultimate in versatility, from low-recoil SD loads in .38 spl to big game (including two-legged species) stoppers from Buffalo Bore. And don't forget, one popular load in .357 mag has, by far, the best one-shot stop statistics since they started charting them.

  4. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ksholder View Post
    For those of you who have the 7-hole, .357 686+, what barrel length do you have and between the 2.5" & 4" models, what are the pros and cons of each?

    I appreciate your input.
    I have the 686 in 2.5, 3 and 4".

    For me:

    2.5" Pros: Very well balanced. Feels like an extension of my hand. Easier to carry (but I carry j-frames or semi's, my 686's are my night stand guns).
    2.5" Cons: Shorter sight radius makes aimed shooting a bit less forgiving to user error. A little snappy with .357's but not bad.

    4" Pros: Longer sight radius provides great "point shootability." Tames the .357's somewhat. Much easier to shoot accurately at longer ranges.
    4" cons: Longer barrel can be a bit heavy and bulky. Not as handy as the 2.5".


    Some are concerned about "losing" the .357 effect with the shorter barrel. That doesn't concern me, and I have it loaded with .38+P anyway.

  5. #20
    Senior Member Array Enzo411's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PEF View Post
    I have the 686 in 2.5, 3 and 4".

    For me:

    2.5" Pros: Very well balanced. Feels like an extension of my hand. Easier to carry (but I carry j-frames or semi's, my 686's are my night stand guns).
    2.5" Cons: Shorter sight radius makes aimed shooting a bit less forgiving to user error. A little snappy with .357's but not bad.

    4" Pros: Longer sight radius provides great "point shootability." Tames the .357's somewhat. Much easier to shoot accurately at longer ranges.
    4" cons: Longer barrel can be a bit heavy and bulky. Not as handy as the 2.5".


    Some are concerned about "losing" the .357 effect with the shorter barrel. That doesn't concern me, and I have it loaded with .38+P anyway.
    The obvious choice then isn't the 2 1/2 or 4 but the 3 inch.

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