Help Me Choose a Revolver

This is a discussion on Help Me Choose a Revolver within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hey Guys- I want a revolver to carry IWB not a pocket carried J-Frame......Before I jump on the semi-auto bandwagon I would like to ...

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Thread: Help Me Choose a Revolver

  1. #1
    Member Array JCook5003's Avatar
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    Help Me Choose a Revolver

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    Hey Guys-

    I want a revolver to carry IWB not a pocket carried J-Frame......Before I jump on the semi-auto bandwagon I would like to investigate all options....

    As I said I am really looking for alternatives to the classic J-Frame pocket carried, I think something a little heavier with a longer barell may actually be a better option ballistic and recoil wise.........

    I want to know why you carry a revovler, what kind it is, how's the recoil, and what kind of ammo do you shoot out of it and what kind of ballistic performance does it yeild?

    Pictures of carry rigs and guns are always helpful.....

    Thanks for the help.
    Josh

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    S&W model 66 - a K frame

    First of all, I presume that you wish to shoot .357 ammo instead of .38 special, and that this is why you want a larger, heavier revolver than the airweight J frame in a pocket.

    A revolver that I have come to like in this role is the S&W model 66 snubby, a stainless K frame gun with a 2.5 inch barrel, 6 round cylinder and weighing about 32 ounces empty. I carry it in an OWB belt holster because IWB carry for such a short barrel gun doesn't really buy you much concealment, and I find it uncomfortable. The model 66 is out of production, but lots of used ones are on the market for about $400.

    I use Remington 125 grain .357 magnum Golden Sabers in the gun, which give muzzle velocity of 1220 fps in a 4 inch barrel and probably 1100 fps in my snubby barrel. The trigger on this gun is excellent in either DA or SA, and it handles recoil very well because of its weight.

    With a little practice you can point shoot the gun without using the sights and easily hit center mass on a profile target within 10 feet, which is probably the main self defense usage of a gun like this anyway. But for longer shots the light SA trigger and adjustable S&W revolver sights allow excellent accuracy.




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    Member Array Roy Weber's Avatar
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    Tarus 617

    Take a close look at the taurus 617! I have one and love it! It is a
    .357 2 in 7 shot and shoots great!

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    Senior Member Array fatboy97's Avatar
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    Have you looked at the SP101? Do a search and you'll find a number of threads on this subject. I'm considering one for my next purchase.
    Be Observant and Be Safe.

    Current: S&W 442, Springfield XD9sc, XDm9, and Glock G26, G19, G23C,
    and SIG P226-40 TT, and Ruger GP-100, and Beretta 92FS
    Former: Taurus 92SS, SIG P220 TT, S&W 360, SIG P239-40, Ruger 22/45 MKII

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    Member Array willis68's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pogo2 View Post
    First of all, I presume that you wish to shoot .357 ammo instead of .38 special, and that this is why you want a larger, heavier revolver than the airweight J frame in a pocket.

    A revolver that I have come to like in this role is the S&W model 66 snubby, a stainless K frame gun with a 2.5 inch barrel, 6 round cylinder and weighing about 32 ounces empty. I carry it in an OWB belt holster because IWB carry for such a short barrel gun doesn't really buy you much concealment, and I find it uncomfortable. The model 66 is out of production, but lots of used ones are on the market for about $400.

    I use Remington 125 grain .357 magnum Golden Sabers in the gun, which give muzzle velocity of 1220 fps in a 4 inch barrel and probably 1100 fps in my snubby barrel. The trigger on this gun is excellent in either DA or SA, and it handles recoil very well because of its weight.

    With a little practice you can point shoot the gun without using the sights and easily hit center mass on a profile target within 10 feet, which is probably the main self defense usage of a gun like this anyway. But for longer shots the light SA trigger and adjustable S&W revolver sights allow excellent accuracy.



    I love that gun!

  7. #6
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    I enjoy owning snubbies but can conceal a 4-inch K-Frame just as easy as a 2-inch IWB. I highly recommend S&W revolvers (traditional pre-lock models). That great Model 66 2 1/2-inch would be the best .357 Magnum choice in my view. The K-Frame .357's would be preferable to the J-Frame .357's because they're a bit heavier and more controllable. Other really good S&W Models to look for would be a Model 10 .38 Special in 2 or 3-inch, a classy Model 15 .38 Special in 2-inch, or, for .357 capabilities, a Model 13 in 3-inch or Model 19 in 2 1/2-inch. All of these models came in 4-inch versions as well. These models are common on the market. If one finds a good, clean one he's got as good a revolver as he can get.

    Oh yes, the stainless versions of the above could be attractive to you. The Model 64 is the stainless steel version of the Model 10, Model 65 is the equivalent to the Model 13, the Model 66 to the Model 19, and the Model 67 to the Model 15.

    The Models 10,13,15, 64, and 65 are fixed sight revolvers while the Models 15, 19, 66, and 67 feature adjustable sights. Fixed are fine for my purposes but adjustable can be nice if one likes to piddle with different loadings.

    My personal favorite is the 4-inch Model 10 Heavy Barrel. I subscribe to that ol' cliche "six for sure" feeling that the first shot against an assailant is more important than the fifteenth. My S&W revolvers never have failed to fire and function unless there was a dud round involved and, in an emergency, another squeeze of the trigger yields another chance instead of another hopeless strike on a dud's primer. Of the semi-autos around the house I have a couple of old 1911's that have never had a mechanical failure (well the front sight fell off my old favorite last year). I don't mind carrying the 1911 but prefer the revolver.

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    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCook5003 View Post
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Hey Guys-

    I want a revolver to carry IWB not a pocket carried J-Frame......Before I jump on the semi-auto bandwagon I would like to investigate all options....

    As I said I am really looking for alternatives to the classic J-Frame pocket carried, I think something a little heavier with a longer barell may actually be a better option ballistic and recoil wise.........

    I want to know why you carry a revovler, what kind it is, how's the recoil, and what kind of ammo do you shoot out of it and what kind of ballistic performance does it yeild?

    Pictures of carry rigs and guns are always helpful.....

    Thanks for the help.
    Josh
    I carry a Revolver because I shoot them better than my Block.

    Statistically I will shoot three rounds in a self defense scenario and have one or two assailants. I don't "do" statistics, I do LIFE. My life is important to me and my loved ones. I have an obligation to come home to them after my shift and to ensure their safety.

    I have my choice of guns to carry Off-Duty. When I'm working I have to carry the firearms they give me and nothing else. I've shot autoloaders and revolvers and carried both. Either or, I don't care. I just carry what I prefer. I like having the ability to stoke the trigger again over doing a "Tap Rack Bang".

    I carry two revolvers on my "own time". One is a 4" N-Frame, either OWB or IWB. I'm not a "big guy", but I did learn to dress around the gun years ago. The BUG is in my "weak side" pocket. The reason I carry a BUG is because I cannot guarantee what hand I will have available to draw with if I am ever in a self defense scenario.

    My "Primary" is a 45 ACP because I like the ballistics of the round and I shoot it a little better than 357 Magnum. That will be changing. I recently picked up a 3" Ruger GP100 and find that it controls recoil better than my 5" S&W 686.

    As far as "Carry Loads" what I'm currently using is:

    45 ACP: Corbon 185 Grain +P DPX JHP
    38 SPL: Remington 125 Grain +P SJHP
    357 MAG: Remington 125 Grain SJHP (Old School Full House Load)

    I will be switching to Black Hills 125 Grain JHP's in 357 Mag in the near future.

    I carry a revolver because I am a "Traditionalist" and realize that I'm not likely to get in to a protracted gunfight needing multiple reloads. I also don't believe in "Cover Fire" as I'm not in Iraq and "Every bullet fired has a lawyer attatched to it."

    Another reason for a revolver is because of how they appear to a "non-gun" jury if I ever have to answer for a shooting. People see them as more defensive in nature over the gangbanger's plastic gat. Let's face reality, it will be hard enough trying to justify a BUG and a reload for each gun but if you compare that to the "typical" street cop I will look unarmed with my two revolvers. 22 rounds and two guns vs 67 rounds, two handguns and one 12 Guage. That doesn't even consider the rifle in the trunk. I am considering the shotgun in my equation because lots of Police Officers around here use them frequently. It's not uncommon to see a shotgun toting Officer carrying a shotgun on a "Tac Sling" for a Burglary Call.

    Another reason for the revolver, for me, is the heavier but smoother trigger pull. It's all about accuracy and smooth is good. My revolvers are DAO if carried for self defense. With this set up I do everything I can to eliminate the "Hair Trigger" accusation that an opposing lawyer may try to accuse me of. My revolvers, most of them, have been "worked on" by a gunsmith to give me the trigger pull I demand and 100% reliability.

    My S&W Thunder Ranch Revolver failed me in the first fifty rounds of shooting it. I sent it back to S&W and it has had over 1,000 failure free rounds through it since. However, that one failure is enough to prompt me to buy a non "Clinton Lock" Ruger. I also like the fact that the Ruger's Ejector Rod is just that, and not something used in the "lock up" of the gun. My Brother found out his Ejector Rod had back out on him in a gunfight. Let's just say that the Model 28 makes a pretty darn good club.

    OK, enough rambling from me. I hope I answered your questions.

    Biker

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    VIP Member Array Supertac45's Avatar
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    I use a SP101 with the 2 1/4 inch barrel in 357 mag. 125 grain Golden Sabers are my favorite load.
    Les Baer 45
    Sig Man
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    VIP Member Array pogo2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikerRN View Post
    Another reason for a revolver is because of how they appear to a "non-gun" jury if I ever have to answer for a shooting. People see them as more defensive in nature over the gangbanger's plastic gat.
    I had not thought of this, but it is an excellent point. I can see where a typical judge or jury would be more sympathetic to the old duffer with his antiquated six shooter than the civilian commando with his 15 round semiauto and 30 rounds in reload magazines. The second guy "looks" more like he is preparing for going to war.

    Most of the time it is the first couple of shots that determine the outcome anyway, so the revolver can match the semiauto quite well unless we get to shots 7 through X.

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    Member Array JCook5003's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice guys, I may go the six gun route......how easy is it to conceal the above mentioned large frame six shot 357's? what holsters do you use and I mostly wear jeans and a t-shirt becuase I am extremley hot natured, can I still carry a revovler this way?

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    Member Array rathos's Avatar
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    smith and wesson makes a 686 2 inch snubby that has a seven shot cylinder. Its a full size frame just like the regular 686. Might be a better option for ya.
    ‘‘To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.’’

    — George Mason

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    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    Between the new and used revolvers out there, here's my choices.

    Bear in mind, I like fixed sight fighting handguns and "dial them in" to a particular load.

    357 MAG
    Ruger 3" GP100
    S&W Prelock 681
    S&W Model 65

    Those are my top three choices with 3"-4" Barrels. I find that a good IWB is what I like, but I'm currently using an OWB for my N-Frame right now as I don't have an IWB for an N-Frame. (N-Frame not listed) My N-Frame is a S&W 22-4. I love it, except for the blueing. If I was going to keep carrying it I would have it refinished by Walter Birdsong in his "Black T" finish.

    I live in a "hot" locality and wear a T-Shirt and Cargo Shorts 85% of the year. I do however wear a "cover" which is an untucked/unbuttoned Camp Shirt or an untucked one size too large Polo Shirt. It doesn't appear out of place and to my knowledge I've not been "made".

    The hardest part of any gun to hide is the "butt". Round Butts are preferable to me with a set of "Boot Grips". My N-Frame has Eagle "Secret Service" stocks on it. My GP100 will get a custom set of Badgers.

    Next month I will have a Sparks Summer Special II for both the Ruger and the S&W. I've used the Summer Special before, and love the work at Milt Sparks. The "pinnacle" of holsters, to me, is Matt Del Fatti. That is why he has a two year backlog. To properly carry a gun you need a good belt and holster. If you search some of my old post you will see whom I'm partial to. There are other good makers out there, I'm just limited by my budget and demand quality. I stick with what I know works.

    Biker

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    VIP Member Array wmhawth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCook5003 View Post
    Thanks for all the advice guys, I may go the six gun route......how easy is it to conceal the above mentioned large frame six shot 357's? what holsters do you use and I mostly wear jeans and a t-shirt becuase I am extremley hot natured, can I still carry a revovler this way?
    I carry a Ruger GP100 4" and other times a S&W 686 2-1/2". In summer these guns are covered by a flat bottom untucked sport shirt or a polo shirt. In winter I often tuck the shirt in and cover the gun with a light weight vest or jacket. I'm currently using Fist holsters and I like to carry my revolvers OWB. An earlier poster referred to the "old duffer with his antiquated 6 shooter". He must have spotted me downtown.

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    I'd opt for a Stainless S&W for IWB due to the sweat factor.
    Which exact model you decide on is up to you but, absolutely go for the Stainless steel.
    You'll be glad that you decided to go Stainless.
    Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ

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    I think the S&W 66 is one of the sweetest revolvers I have ever owned! I don't think you'd be disappointed with it!
    ALWAYS carry! - NEVER tell!

    "A superior Operator is best defined as someone who uses his superior
    judgement to keep himself out of situations that would require a display of his
    superior skills."

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