Lets discuss the Taurus "Thunderbolt" rifles...


July 7, 2006, 10:19 PM
I saw these on the Taurus website and fancied the idea. Has anybody gotten some experience with them? Are they of usual Taurus quality? Personally I like pump guns, which seem a natural extension of "things ergonomic". The thought of a "gallery gun" in .357 Mag just tickles me!

Seems like they might make a nice truck/trunk gun, too.

Any thoughts?

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July 7, 2006, 10:53 PM
I've got one in 45 Colt. Very pretty. Nicely made and finished. A bit stiff at first but works well when you feed it ammo of the proper length and diameter. (tried stuffing it full of Schoefields and it choked on the slightly larger rims)

Shoots well. Very accurate. Buttplate doesn't fit my shoulder very well and is pointy at the bottom. Must be careful how I mount it or heavy 300grn loads will leave a mark.

The rifle is LONG with the full barrel but very slender and would fit in a horse scabbard (or the like) super nice.

Best part about it is the speed. Thing is FAST in operation. Must be why they called it 'Lightning'. A .357 version would be a neat addition but I haven't seen one for sale yet.

July 7, 2006, 11:11 PM
I want one real bad. So I'm posting so I can find this thread again.

I've called Taurus and most of what of the Thunderbolt models they list in their catalog do not exist or are not available for sale which gives me a heap of heartburn. Why have a listing for an item in a catalog if you do not have it for sale?

A 20" bbl in the stainless in .45 would be just dandy. Match it up with a Gaucho in the same finish and caliber and you've got something real nice.

July 8, 2006, 11:18 AM
I have the full length in 45 and wouldnt sell it for 1000$(serious). Mine has functioned flawlessly including BP loads. Its dead accurate once you find your sight picture and I've been very successfull hunting with it this year. Its also gorgeous with the deep blued 26'' barrel and mag tube. I cant speak for everyone but mine is simply perfect and I'll never sell it. Get one even if it requires some tweaking it'll be worth it, its quite an experience to shoot. Good luck, and dont come near mine:)

July 8, 2006, 04:41 PM

How many shots does it hold?

July 8, 2006, 05:06 PM
Many of the Thunderbolts, especially the ones with the serial number starting with Y have problems. The two main ones are flipping out live rounds, and rounds getting caught under the lifter. I have had one since January, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. I have tried different loads, brass, and overall lengths. Today at a CAS match it lasted 40 rounds before doublr feeding. Most people who have returned them to Taurus have had to wait for several weeks before their rifles are repaired. Everyone I have spoken to has been sent a replacement rifle with a Z prefex on the serial number. As far as I know, the only T-Bolt available now is the 26" long .45 Long Colt. I don't know how many rounds they hold, I have read 12, but I routinely load 10 in mine for matches. This is not a strong action and not suited for heavy hunting loads.

July 13, 2006, 11:30 PM
There is a review in this month's Gun World by Jan Libourel.

It seems that you can't top off the mag. The only way to load it is if the action is both empty and open and the only way to unload it without firing it is to "chamber each cartridge, carefully ease the hammer down to the "rest" position and cycle the slide to eject the chambered cartridge and chamber a fresh one, repeating the process untill the rifle is "dry".

This means you are lowering the hammer onto a live cartridge.

Other than that and the fact the butt plate makes recoil feel worse he gives it a good write-up.

July 14, 2006, 12:22 AM
One thing about the unloading sequence is they have is a button on the hammer which allows it to be lowered without pulling the trigger.


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