Need Advice -- S & W Model 36 or 640 For Wife

This is a discussion on Need Advice -- S & W Model 36 or 640 For Wife within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; My wife is interested in getting a CCW permit, and wants to get a .38 Special. I plan to get her one, and get a ...

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Thread: Need Advice -- S & W Model 36 or 640 For Wife

  1. #1
    Member Array jsmosby's Avatar
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    Need Advice -- S & W Model 36 or 640 For Wife

    My wife is interested in getting a CCW permit, and wants to get a .38 Special. I plan to get her one, and get a clip attached to the gun so that she can carry it in her waistband at the small of her back, without a holster.

    With a S&W Model 36, the advantages are:

    1) The smallest, lightest, and most concealable "J-frame" steel gun.
    2) Blueing enhances concealability.
    3) Combat wood grip with finger grooves included in purchase price.

    The disadvantages are:

    1) Higher risk of rust due to blueing.
    2) Greater recoil due to light weight.
    3) Gunsmithing required in order to bob hammer spur in order to avoid snagging.

    With the S&W Model 640 ("Centennial"), the advantages are:

    1) No gunsmithing on hammer spur required.
    2) Marginally better recoil control due to larger size and weight.
    3) DA only so choice is simple.

    The disadvantages are:

    1) Less concealable due to shiny surface.
    2) Somewhat larger size than Model 36 for purposes of concealability.
    3) Combat wood grip with finger grooves must be purchased separately.

    What are your thoughts?

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array cockedlocked01's Avatar
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    Well, you can get a 442 or 642. Blued or shiny with enclosed hammer. You can get models with a hammer or a shrouded hammer, & I'm pretty sure you can get each of those blued or "shiny." My nickel plated 442 isn't that shiny though. It's kind of a matte metal look.

    You can get the steel models, which will handle recoil better. I wouldn't recommend the titanium models if heavy recoil is an issue. It's all a matter of what you're comfortablt with. The J-frame platform comes in many forms, so you shouldn't have a problem finding one that suit you & your wife.

    Well, good luck.
    "Use human means as though divine ones didn't exist, and divine means as though there were no human ones." Baltasar Gracian
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    Distinguished Member Array p8riot's Avatar
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    My wife swears by her 642. It's light, but just heavy enough to tame the recoil from +P loads, no hammer to worry about snagging on her clothes, and very reliable. She has no problems with the stock grip.
    "You can get more with a kind word and a gun than you can with a kind word alone." - Al Capone

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    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    Belt carry - model 640

    The S&W 640 is all steel and weighs about 25 ounces, with no external hammer to snag on clothing. It generally will take either .357 magnum or .38 ammo.

    The model 36 is a lighter gun, made only for .38 special caliber, and has an external hammer. The airweight versions of the model 36, such as the 642 or 442, weigh about 15 ounces empty and are suitable for pocket carry.

    Since your wife will carry on the belt, where gun weight is less critical than in pocket carry, I would recommend the model 640 because the weight makes the gun much easier to shoot. Small snubbies are difficult to shoot well, but the heavier ones will recoil less and recover quicker for the following shot.

    I wouldn't worry about the shine of stainless steel as long as the gun is concealed under clothing. The stainless will resist rust and corrosion better when carried next to the body.

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    VIP Member Array MNBurl's Avatar
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    For no holster carry, a enclosed hammer is the only way to go due to jabbing the hammer into the side and interfering with the draw due to the cloths getting caught. Small of the back is even worse for women in general because of less padding (thinner skin) than a guy. Appendix carry is a very good option on a woman where it naturally hides.

    Also she should (and you) check out... http://www.corneredcat.com/ for carry issues with women.

    So, based on that a 640 or 642 would be my choice.
    MNBurl

    "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking" - George S. Patton.

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    Member Array pistola's Avatar
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    Cool S&W 640 Advantage

    Another advantage of the 640 is the higher backstrap of the revolvers grip frame.This puts the bore of the weapon more in line with the firing hand, which greatly reduces felt recoil and aids recovery time for multiple shots...

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    Which one does your wife like better?

    Sorry no one seemed to ask this question,
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

  9. #8
    Member Array estimber's Avatar
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    steel guns are heavy, you can get the same thing in an airweight and save some aggravation. she may grow tired of the weight and start to leave the gun at home.
    If we treat every gun as if it was loaded, then why not treat every individual as if they are armed.

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