Stupid Question

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    Member Array D1omedes's Avatar
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    Stupid Question

    Why does S&W have most of their revolvers with an exposed backstrap? I see that Hogue grips for Ruger cover the backstraps but they don't do so for S&W revolvers. I've searched Google but haven't come up with a definitive explanation.

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    I’m just guessing but as a general rule if you compare the size of the Ruger frames in the grip area you will find them somewhat smaller than the S&Ws. That being the case if they covered the backstrap on the S&W it will make the grips considerably larger.
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    Newer model Ruger DA revolvers (after the Service/Security Six) have a different grip frame than the S&W design, more of a smallish "spud" that the grip surrounds. The conventional design a' la S&W, Colt and older Rugers uses a full-outline, "windowed" grip frame with separate grip panels for left and right sides.

    A grip large enough to "enclose" the backstrap on the S&W revolvers might be larger than most hands could grasp effectively.
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    Thanks for clarifying, guys.

    A follow up: Is there an advantage to having a "windowed" frame with an exposed backstrap? It seems to me that the exposed steel sends recoil straight into the web of the hand.

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    VIP Member Array Crowman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by D1omedes View Post
    Why does S&W have most of their revolvers with an exposed backstrap? I see that Hogue grips for Ruger cover the backstraps but they don't do so for S&W revolvers.
    I guess you would have to contact S&W for the answer.

    If you you have any of the following S&W revolvers you might want to purchase the grip I link here. It covers the backstrap, it is not much larger all around but it is a bit longer and does make a difference. You mostly likely will be glad you got it. (a tad pricey but worth it -- better than the Hogue)
    (Must Have Rounded Corners On Butt Of Frame) Models 30, 32, 34, 36, 37, 38, 40, 42, 43, 49, 50, 51, 60, 242, 317, 331, 332, 337, 337PD, 340, 340PD, 342, 342PD, 360, 442, 449, 460, 631, 632, 637, 638, 640, 642, 649, 650 and 940.
    Product: J Synthetic Full Size Grip with S&W Logo

    Here is the link to all the rubber grips they sell for revolvers
    Rubber Grips - Smith & Wesson
    Last edited by Crowman; April 13th, 2012 at 11:29 PM.
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    VIP Member Array Crowman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by D1omedes View Post
    A follow up: Is there an advantage to having a "windowed" frame with an exposed backstrap? It seems to me that the exposed steel sends recoil straight into the web of the hand.
    I personally do not see any advantage to a "windowed" frame. All I can think of is the manufactures wanted to make the grip as small as possible.

    In post #3 it was mentioned if they covered the backstrap on the S&W it will make the grips considerably larger. On that note I purchased the S&W full sized grip for my 642. The stock grip was "windowed" and the full sized covers the backstrap and size wise it is not that noticeable. Another plus of stock 642 grip and full size is full size is longer (better for pinky finger grip). The extra length is not an issue either.
    "One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation."
    --Thomas B. Reed, American Attorney

    Second Amendment -- Established December 15, 1791 and slowly eroded ever since What happened to "..... shall not be infringed."

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    Smith & Wesson introduced their basic round butt grip frame configuration in the 19th century and it has very little changed even up to present times, the greatest change being in the early 1950s, a year or two after the Chief's Special was introduced, when the J-Frame round butt grip frame was slightly lengthened.

    Their square butt style was introduced in 1905 as a variant of the K-Frame .38 Special and .32-20 revolvers which had been made in round butt style since 1899.

    As far as covering the back strap, it's simply a matter of taste, and custom revolver stock makers can provide covered and open styles to suite individual preference. Many styles are available. I don't mind the exposed steel back strap, having used Smith & Wesson revolvers with that feature since I fired the first one, a Model 15 in 1968.

    Pachmayr's rubber grips typically cover the back strap but I never cared for either the rubber composition or the feel of the grips on the revolver. I like plain ol' factory stocks best. The Pachmayr grips do cushion the recoil from the really hard kickers to some extent but they're just so ugly and feel too thin in width and too long in front-to-rear length for my hands. The target stocks are good 'nuff for my purposes.
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    VIP Member Array Crowman's Avatar
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    "One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation."
    --Thomas B. Reed, American Attorney

    Second Amendment -- Established December 15, 1791 and slowly eroded ever since What happened to "..... shall not be infringed."

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    Member Array D1omedes's Avatar
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    Thanks for the pics, Crow. What type of laser is that?

    bmc - I did like the classic wood grips that were on the Smith that I fired. I just didn't like that steel slamming into the web of my hand when I moved my grip up a bit. But I have smaller hands and wrists than other guys so maybe I am more sensitive. Still, I fired a box of .38 spl and another of .357 magnum and I had no pain or soreness that night or the following day. And the trigger was so nice. Maybe S&W gets some things right after all, huh?

  11. #10
    VIP Member Array Crowman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by D1omedes View Post
    Thanks for the pics, Crow. What type of laser is that?
    It is a LaserLyte. Crimson trace (CT) makes a laser grip so it goes on when you grip the gun. They have two models, 1 model is always on when you grip, the other model has a manual on/off switch. I find CT prices are way out of line that is why I bought the LaserLyte. With a bit of practice one can turn the LaserLyte on while drawing.
    "One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation."
    --Thomas B. Reed, American Attorney

    Second Amendment -- Established December 15, 1791 and slowly eroded ever since What happened to "..... shall not be infringed."

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