Choosing a .357 revolver... ?

Choosing a .357 revolver... ?

This is a discussion on Choosing a .357 revolver... ? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I currently have been looking to buy a full size .357 revolver with a 4" barrel. Note: this gun will be used only for target ...

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Thread: Choosing a .357 revolver... ?

  1. #1
    Member Array born2die's Avatar
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    Choosing a .357 revolver... ?

    I currently have been looking to buy a full size .357 revolver with a 4" barrel. Note: this gun will be used only for target shooting (not carry). So far, I've narrowed the search down to three options... a Taurus Model 66, a S&W Model 686P, or a Ruger GP100. Right now I'm leaning towards the S&W because of all the good things I've heard about them, but they are a little pricey compared to the other two.

    I would greatly appreciate your experiences or opinions of these three guns.
    Thanks


  2. #2
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    My bro has a 586. also I used to shoot a M66 S&W. I have never had any problems with any S&W revos. they are well built and accurate.
    "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock." Thomas Jefferson


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    The 686 is a great gun out of the box. The GP100 is also a good gun, but will need a little work (wolf spring kit) to get it up to par.
    The Taurus would be OK if you dont expect much and dont want to spring for the 686 or work on the Ruger.

    If it were my choice, I think I would go with the Ruger and order up a spring kit the same day.
    Last edited by SIXTO; June 15th, 2007 at 01:44 PM.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Senior Member Array ICTsnub's Avatar
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    I've shot all three, but own a mid eighties model 686. S&W put a new barrel on it the first year I had it. I think if you handle all three, the Smiths' have a slicker trigger, but I have not shot a new one with the lock.

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    I would go with the Ruger, then Taurus, then the S&W.

    Due to price/value. I think with the Ruger you get the best gun for the price.
    A real man loves his wife, and places his family as the most important thing in life. Nothing has brought me more peace and content in life than simply being a good husband and father.

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    I don't feel the modern S&Ws are made to same high standards of the past. If you can find an older one, buy it. They use too many MIM parts these days to suit me. I own two Ruger GP-100s. One in 4" with adjustable sights and the other a 3" with fixed sights. They both have excellent actions and are solidly built and very accurate.
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    First choice would be GP-100 - based on price and shere ruggedness .. that said the trigger will probably need some break-in or actual attention to get things smoother. I may yet have to get one!

    I got a Taurus 66 years ago and out the box I was amazed at how ''Smithlike'' the trigger felt. I like the gun a lot and it feels pretty much like 4" J frame, with full underlug. 7 shot cyl still phases me tho! I keep that as a house gun and actually as far as revo's go, my wife shoots that the best - better than anything actually.

    My 686 is a ''non dash'' - early one - and tho it had had a lotta 357 punishment before I bought it, it is still a great piece - one I use occasionally for PPC (which is why it has the 15 ounce weight I made to go on it! ).

    If you can find an earlier 686 for an acceptable price - get it - it will hold value well. But if you go GP-100 you'll have a tough shooter and the 4" is a hot seller over years.





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    Senior Member Array zero's Avatar
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    +1 on the GP100

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    Member Array born2die's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the input so far, its very helpful. With the GP100 you're saying it would need trigger work, what kind of work are you talking about? like taking it to a gunsmith or is it something i can easily do myself?

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    Quote Originally Posted by born2die View Post
    Thanks for all the input so far, its very helpful. With the GP100 you're saying it would need trigger work, what kind of work are you talking about? like taking it to a gunsmith or is it something i can easily do myself?
    Nope you dont need a smith as long as your a little bit capable. It just needs a spring kit and a little breaking in. Its easy to do, they are all drop in direct replacments.

    In fact, when you do it, post the project here. I and I'm sure others will help you through it if needed.
    "Just blame Sixto"

  11. #11
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    taking it to a gunsmith or is it something i can easily do myself
    You can change mainspring for a shade lighter - that's fairly easy but lightening spring is always potentially able to give light strikes.

    Work can be done on trigger group - not too tricky altho some folks first time find re-installation of trigger group fiddly. I suggest only polishing - no metal removal as such ....... purely a smoothing operation on the relevant surfaces.

    However - plenty of dry fire and use will over time ease things usually. If unsure about whether you wanna take the thing apart - get help from a smith. First tho it'd be wise to just shoot it a fair bit, then decide whether it needs improved ..... I personally can live with the Ruger triggers (per my SP-101) but there is usually room for improvement.
    Chris - P95
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    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

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    Senior Member Array Smith&Wessonfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ICTsnub View Post
    I think if you handle all three, the Smiths' have a slicker trigger, but I have not shot a new one with the lock.
    Smiths with the lock are as smooth or smoother in DA than any pre-lock I have ever fired.

    The lock is a storage device and does not interfere at all with trigger pull when disengaged. In fact, no part of the lock is in contact with the gun's fire control mechanism when it is disengaged so it cannot have an effect on trigger pull.

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    I own a 686-P it's a nice revolver. The only one I'd rather have would be the Colt.
    The flame that jumps out with the .357 mag is a thing of beauty. Best of luck with whatever you decide to get.

  14. #14
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    S&W 686 hands down

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    When I bought my GP100 it was down to a choice between it and the 686 for me. The GP100 seemed to be as much gun for less money. I bought it and put a Hogue on it and have not regretted the decision. They are both great revolvers though and you'll be happy with either one.

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