The Fightin' Revolver: Is it dying a slow death?
This is a discussion on The Fightin' Revolver: Is it dying a slow death? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I was just thinking the other day. Sure when it comes to snubnose revolvers, which are great and I can give you all sorts of ...
April 28th, 2005 12:34 AM
The Fightin' Revolver: Is it dying a slow death?
I was just thinking the other day. Sure when it comes to snubnose revolvers, which are great and I can give you all sorts of reasons why they're so great, we have all sorts of options in all honesty.
But I then remembered something I read once where the author talked about a "fightin' size" gun, which is a bit of an oxymoron when it comes to handguns, but he maintained that K, L, and N frame sized revolvers were unquestionalby going to be more effective guns on the whole. I have to agree. These frames are easier to shoot and they facilitate more effective calibers.
But let's look at what's happening in the industry:
Smith and Wesson has gone to those internal locks nobody cares for. I don't hate them or distrust them but I'd rather they weren't there. They're eliminating a lot of the little touches that made their revolvers Smith and Wessons. When's the last time we saw a pinned barrel on a brand new Smith? When's the last time you saw a brand new Smith that had a forged trigger? Also, call the Peformance center sometime and ask for a 3" barrel. You will be asked to get in line.
Bianchi refuses to make speed strips in more than one size, namely the size for .38 casings. They could easily produce strips for .44 casings but they will not.
Colt has nearly quit making revolvers altogether. Like Smith and Wesson they've let their quality die. Even with the popularity of the snubnose the Detective Special is gone forever. The Python is dead and that is truly sad.
When is the last time you heard about a new caliber for revolvers? Not that new calibers are necessarily good, but honestly I can remember the 9x19's rise to prominence, and I can remember the .40, .357 Sig, 10 mm, and now the .45 GAP coming out in my lifetime.
Taurus for a while there was looking like a shining beacon of hope. Their internal lock system is much more elegant. Their quality is improving, and they offer many designs that meet the needs of CCWers. But their catalog is shrinking and fast. For example all variants of the model 445 are gone now. They have quit making 3" barrels. They do not make very many offerings in a 4" barrel in a caliber larger than .357 Magnum.
Ruger still has some life in it but their catalog isn't that large. Their internal lock design is probably the best yet. They make a few things very well, which I suppose is far better than making many things poorly. Truthfully if I bought a brand new revolver I'd lean heavily towards the Ruger models.
I've started another thread, and thanks for the help by the way, looking for holsters for full size frames because I just could not find any!
Your options are dissappering, the choices are getting fewer, the accessories are becoming less common, and the innovations in ammuntion aren't as forthcoming. Manufacturers could easily give us more options and they choose not to, and a lot of good models are being abandoned for no apparent reason. Not to mention the lockwork of most wheelguns hasn't changed in 100 years. Not that there's any reason to change it, but it just shows how stangnant the market is that no one has tried anything new in so long. I mean honestly where is the Gaston Glock of the wheelgun?
Why are they killing off the full sized revolver? Honestly it's like a conspiracy. I honestly feel that in 10 years I'll be using a DAO service pistol and my revolvers will sit in a safe, because the ammunition will be impossible to find and their collector's value will start climbing.
April 28th, 2005 01:12 AM
Head into the light, Euclidean. There may be a new 1911 waiting for you over on this side.....
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.
April 28th, 2005 01:59 AM
when it comes to gun fights, self defense, and concealed carry, i agree that the revolver is pretty much out of the running. my CCW instructor comes right out and states that the gun to use is a semi auto. personally, i've always been more accurate and faster with a semi auto because of the smooth single action pull. i don't have any real experience with the dao models. on the other hand, handgun hunting has had a real upswing and some of the new calibers must be awsome. for that reason, i don't think the revolver is dead. i just think the use has shifted away from self defense and law enforcement use.
April 28th, 2005 05:22 AM
Plain and simple it is a numbers game. With LEO and military orders not coming in for revolvers there isn't enough product going out the door to justify some items in the catalog. BTW Pinned barrels went out in 1980 and forged went out in the early 90's for S&W.
Me thinks the same issues were pondered with the lower popularity of black powder guns and the older hand fitted guns. When S&W went to the model numbers in the 50's I'll bet there were those who weren't happy.
It is change and it happens. Bottom feeders are where the market is so that is where the manufacturers are going. Revolvers will likely occupy niche markets for a long time to come, but will be a small catalog until the cycle comes back to them, if it ever does.
April 28th, 2005 07:51 AM
I think it's mostly going to be small carry guns and large hunting guns. There's just very little market for the in-between revolvers.
April 28th, 2005 08:56 AM
FLM is right that the revolver is still alive in the sense that there's lots of great innovations in snubnose guns and hunting guns.
But explain to me people just exactly what is the difference that makes a single stack large bore semiautomatic so much more capable than a 4" L or N frame size wheelgun. I mean honestly, what does a 4" revolver in .45 LC give up to a something like a Sig 220? Functionally they're very similar.
It just blows my mind that the "midsize", if you will, double action revolver seems to be on the decline as these are good tools for personal and home defense.
April 28th, 2005 09:00 AM
My two carry guns are a Taurus 85CHULT and a Glock 27. I like them because they both operate the same (no external safeties or de-cockers) that way I won't get confused as to what gun I'm carrying and what I need to do to fire it. I believe in the KISS method.
I carry the G-27 90% of the time in either a Max Con V or a BlackHawk Serpa. The 85 usually is carried in a pocket holster for those "Dress up" times...
I think that the Revolver has a place in peoples carry configuration's. If you get a mis-fire, pull the trigger again. With an auto, you'll have to rack the slide for a fresh round...
April 28th, 2005 09:34 AM
There's a whole world of used S&W's out there. The .38 Specials are very reasonably priced. The larger ones are more expensive, but nowhere near the price of comparable but usually inferior new guns. As long as good used guns are cheaper, you both get the hint that the demand is not there, and you realize that there is not actually a problem. If you want a good carry revolver, just buy one.
April 28th, 2005 10:29 AM
Believe it or not I think we're going to see more combat worthy revolvers coming out. The new S&W 44 Spec. is doing very well in sales. There is going to be more articles out there from "BIG" names talking about all the great wheel guns we have or will have. Hang in there Euc.
April 28th, 2005 11:27 AM
I aquired an N frame rig from someone last year - belt slide - which nicely holds my M28-2, tho I don't carry it that much. Other aspect re leather for revo's and large frames in particular - I reckon most of our esteemed holster makers out there can oblige if asked.
The trend when you look broadly is very semi oriented but - revo's are still with us in a big way. Many ladies have a snub ... and I still have my SP-101 as a carry option - in fact that was carry most of last year.
Revo's are perhaps ''downplayed'' a bit these days but - in actual fact are in some ways almost making a come-back, snubs for most part. Revo's will never die!!
Chris - P95
NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.
"To own a gun and assume that you are armed
is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."
- a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.
April 28th, 2005 11:38 AM
Hi Euclidean, usually you are right on the money, I believe you may need a sip or two of Starbucks on " I mean honestly, what does a 4" revolver in .45 LC give up to a something like a Sig 220? Functionally they're very similar." The auto of course operates different than a six shooter so training becomes an issue. I like a .44 or .357 with a little longer barrel. I agree with you so much about six shooters being a great home defense weapon. When I had my ccw I carried a .44 in my car, it made one feel very secure.
Originally Posted by Euclidean
As you slide down the banister of life,
May the splinters never point the wrong way.
NRA Life Member
April 28th, 2005 11:54 AM
Well FortyFive what I meant by that is that essentially, in operation, they're a lot alike even though the manual of arms is different. You can get catridges for either that have similar properties. They're about the same size. You can get very similar sights for both. A revolver in operation is very much like a Glock or a decocker or most DAOs: pull trigger go bang.
A lot of people point to the capacity as the issue. Is there a huge difference between 6 or 7 rounds and 7 or 8 rounds, with the provision there may be another one in the chamber? And honestly if you practice the New York reload anyway does it make a difference?
The grips on a revolver and the way it points are very different and I can fully understand why someone might not like these things. Yes the training is different. There is no tap rack bang on a wheelgun but that's a whole other can of worms.
It just baffles me that something that's still useful seems to be getting phased out. Are sales really that bad?
April 28th, 2005 12:36 PM
"Get yourself a Glock and lose that nickel-plated sissy pistol." Tommy Lee Jones in U.S. Marshalls
Sorry, couldn't resist.
Blessed be the Lord my rock who trains my hands for war and my fingers for battle. Psalm 144:1
Si vis pacem, para bellum
April 28th, 2005 12:50 PM
What's that quote from Patton?
"They're not pearl grips they're ivory. Only a new Orleans pimp carries a pearl handled pistol."
Or something like that.
I'd only nickle plate a revolver I didn't plan on using very much. A basic brushed stainless finish not only looks good to me personally, but it's easy to keep up.
I like nickle and hard chrome and bright super polished stainless finishes and I admit wood grips look better too, but for a gun I'm actually going to use for something I'll go with basic stainless and a black rubber grip. That in itself has its own pleasing aesthetic quality. It says "Use me".
April 28th, 2005 05:09 PM
Hang on there! IIRC The Taurus comes in .45ACP, .44 magnum, .45 LC, .454 Casull and 480 Ruger in their Tracker 4" bbl. Even if that's a 5" bbl that's still in your ballpark.
Originally Posted by Euclidean
I have lusted for a Tracker in 480 Ruger for a long time. I also REALLY want to find a snubnose revolver in 45 LC that is a true compact and not just a cut down big-boy like the new Alaskan from Ruger.
Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.
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