Revolver Suggestions: .357 4"


August 30, 2008, 07:28 AM
I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions for good 4" .357's? Comparable to the GP-100, Taurus Tracker 627, Taurus 66ss4 (especially in price). Thanks in advance.

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August 30, 2008, 07:45 AM
You will be hard pressed to wear out a Ruger GP100. Rock solid gun. Good trigger - not old-school S&W, but pretty good, and it gets better the more you use it.

Can't speak about Taurus. Know a couple guys who really like 'em and carry them regularly. Interestingly, the negative comments are on the boards, not from people in-person. [/shrug]

Ruger got my $$ and I'm pleased.


August 30, 2008, 07:59 AM
Never owned a Ruger DA revolver but have played with them. Seem like a good pistol but I just can't get past my Smith M65.

Have the Hogue grips and this pistol just keeps getting better and better,

Stainless with a 4" barrel. Great for carry and plinking.

About $375 or a little better

August 30, 2008, 08:35 AM
I would pick a the Ruger. I have the SP101 for CC. I had never really been a revolver guy before buying it, but ever since I have fallen in love with it.
Not as pretty to the eye as a S&W, but very well built.

August 30, 2008, 08:39 AM
Thanks. What are some other good makes and models similar to the ruger and taurus that might be in the same price range? The S&W's are a bit too pricey for me.

August 30, 2008, 09:09 AM
If it has to be new, then you won't be disappointed with the GP100. Personally I wouldn't spend a dime on a Taurus if I could find a stainless Ruger or S&W for similar money - if you're willing to look at used, there are a LOT of S&W 65s and 66s - some of the best handling .357s you'll find, and usually available significantly cheaper than a new Ruger.

August 30, 2008, 09:45 AM
This one...S&W 686 pre-lock!!

August 30, 2008, 10:00 AM
I have a GP 100 thatís been excellent, I can highly recommend it.

August 30, 2008, 10:28 AM
My vote is the Taurus 66ss 4". I just recently got the blued version and have to say it was better to shoot then the Ruger and Smith .357s. For the price you cant go wrong. Ive put 500 rounds thru mine all 158grain JSP and not a single problem.

I know some people who own the Taurus 627, they say its great but with the ports its louder then any other .357. If you want some more advice from some one who ACTUALLY owns a taurus and isn't just talking sent me a pm.

August 30, 2008, 10:45 AM
I like smith

But ruger or tarus are very good guns too. The people who criticize taurus I think are just being snobby. The one I shot(a 6"bbl 7shot 357) was excellent. Incredible smooth action out of the box...better than many smiths I've shot. The grips are a little off-putting to some though. they are not quite like a smith. The appearance of a taurus isn't quite as good as a smith either, in my opinion.

Some people will praise the original and condemn the copy no matter what.

One thing to consider...if some shooters are predujiced against taurus, then some gunsmiths are going to be also. so if you want some work done on a taurus, you might have a hard time.

August 30, 2008, 12:06 PM
Ruger GP100's are the most bombproof .357's on the market IMO. I have had a 4" model and currently have a 3" model that I carry as a back-up gun while hog hunting.

I have a 4" Taurus 627 and I am very impressed with it. It shoots great and has functioned great so far. The trigger is very smooth and the gun is quite accurate. It is well constructed but it is not built as heavy as the GP100 but, to be fair, what is? lol

I would readily recommend either one to someone looking for a medium framed .357.

3" GP100

Taurus Tracker 627

Gary A
August 30, 2008, 12:14 PM
Taurus is not my favorite revolver brand but the fact remains that they sell a lot of revolvers. Someone must like them. The part of the gun-buying public that regularly posts on these forums is a pretty small slice. One has to be enough of a "retro" troglodyte to enjoy the outdoors and firearms (specifically older technology firearms such as revolvers) and enough of a "modern" to enjoy spending a considerable amount of time in a cyber-space community. Not everyone fits that description. Many are one or the other. Fewer are both. The cowboy action forms are a wonderful example of an incongruous juxtaposition of interests; using the internet to inhabit an earlier time. Kindofa time machine.

"He's a walkin' contradiction, partly truth and partly fiction" - Kris Kristofferson

August 30, 2008, 12:30 PM
Katana, nice looking guns. Thanks for the info.

August 30, 2008, 01:38 PM
my Taurus 66 blue 4" was $365.00 before taxes. i walked out the shop with 4 boxes of ammo cleaning kit and holster for $445.00

August 30, 2008, 01:50 PM
Go with a Smith or Ruger (new or used). My brother in law's Taurus gets more frequent flier miles for repairs than my Brother in law gets from work.

August 30, 2008, 02:36 PM
A Ruger SP101, or GP100 are excellent revolvers.

A Smith and Wesson 686 is also an excellent choice.

Stay away from Taurus products if you want your choice to work when needed.

One thing to consider...if some shooters are predujiced against taurus, then some gunsmiths are going to be also. so if you want some work done on a taurus, you might have a hard time.
My experiences come from owning 7 different Taurus makes and models. All had problems. If you ship 'em back for repair. Be prepared to wait. They say 4-6 weeks, but it's really between 2-4 months. There's a reason most Smiths won't work on em. They're junk.

August 30, 2008, 02:38 PM
I've got two 4" GP100's. Both have been excellent shooters. Also have a 2.25" SP101 that is my typical daily carry gun.

August 30, 2008, 05:49 PM
"There's a reason most Smiths won't work on em. They're junk."

Yeah well, I remember a time when smiths wouldn't work on anything stainless either.

I suppose you are now going to tell me that stainless S&W revolvers and stainless 1911s are junk too? The reason why smiths won't work on certain guns has alot do with personal predujice and lack of knowledge of that certain gun.

August 30, 2008, 06:00 PM
"The reason why smiths won't work on certain guns has alot do with personal predujice and lack of knowledge of that certain gun."

The gunsmith I use has personal prejudice against Taurus based on a lot of knowledge of that particular make. Prejudice is often based on multiple, repetitive factual experiences.
August 30, 2008, 06:08 PM
You did not say what will be the primary use of this revolver.

Anyways, you can't go wrong with the GP100 in 4" or 6". If I were allowed only one gun, it would be a 6" GP100. If allowed two, the other will be a 6" S&W 686.

August 30, 2008, 06:13 PM
easyrider, the primary use would be home defense and at the range.

August 30, 2008, 09:35 PM
If you get a good Taurus(highly likely if you know how to inspect a revolver), you'll have a good gun. If you just walk in, buy one, and walk out, your chances of having problems increase quite a bit.

Taurus does make a quality product, however, they also have a higher lemon rate than others---and from what I've heard of their might get fixed and it might not. It might even have more problems when it comes back than it did when you sent it off.

CSA 357
August 30, 2008, 10:35 PM
19,66,686, Or A 27 All Smiths Of Course!:d

Seven For Sure
August 30, 2008, 11:01 PM
S&W 686+ or S&W 620

August 30, 2008, 11:06 PM
Sir, I own all four brands, Colts S&W Ruger and Rossi

I shoot the Rossi the most, 851 and 971, this are pre=Taurus. I have not had any problems with them. I will say the shoot full load 357 mag in the 971 is a bit of workout and I would agree that I would not shoot full load on a daily bases. But overall a good service weapon and You can not bet the prices on them. (usually under 250 used in good to great shape)

If price is a fact good used Ruger Security Six might fit your need too.
August 31, 2008, 03:33 AM
the primary use would be home defense and at the range.

Jeff, GP100 it is. It can handle any 357 load you would care to shoot, it is accurate, durable, reliable and backed by a great American company. It is priced middle of the pack, that IMHO makes the GP100 the best value in the 357 magnum revolver market.

Or for about the same price as a new GP100, you may want to check out used S&W 686/586's, pre-lock models of course, if you fancy tradition, looks and fine trigger pulls over durability.

BTW, whether buying new or used, American or Brazilian made, subject your chosen one to the outstanding Jim March revolver checkout procedure, which is in the sticky threads of this sub-forum. This procedure may save you a lot of money and/or grief.

August 31, 2008, 03:45 AM
I had a Taurus 608 8-shot .357. Nice shooting gun. Although I updated to a S&W 627 V-Comp, and 327 R8 M&P. MyTaurus was, and is a great gun.

For a gun that cost about 1/3 of a S&W, they aren't bad.

August 31, 2008, 03:47 AM
I know it's mentioned as above your price range, but the money spent on a 686 is never regretted. In reality you can find a fine used example @$400.

August 31, 2008, 04:04 AM
Here is the scoop on all the Taurus and Rossi revolvers under discussion.

Within these few links are the other links on the various models for your consideration.

I do own a number of Taurus revolvers and one Rossi snub revolver.

Older 20 year+ models 65,and 66 and 85CH. New aquisitions are the newer 66 with 7 shots in it, a model 82, and a Rossi 462 snub. All the new ones are in stainless. The older ones are dureable,accurate, and have had longevity.

The new ones are just as accurate and dureable. No problems at all.

How accurate? That's in the links somewhere.
Granted there's a lot to go through, but this is your money,your life, and your niche that needs filling. So to know for sure is highly important.

I've had some experience with the Rugers and find them decent guns also.

Sold my one Ruger revolver to get another Ruger product.
Amazingly there are a large number of us Taurus owners who own Ruger products as well. I can bring that link forth if necessary if need be, but you've got enough to go through already.

Hope these prove useful.

What ever you pick enjoy it and good shooting.

August 31, 2008, 09:28 AM
Amazingly there are a large number of us Taurus owners who own Ruger products as well.

It's not so amazing :) People who own these guns, especially the Rugers are looking for a tool to do a job, not a name to impress their friends with. They are workman's firearms. I have owned and carried almost every brand out there and I have chosen my GP100, Sp101's and my Taurus 627 because they meet every need that I have for my revolvers.

Also, these guns don't sit on the shelf. One of the reasons I love the .357/.38 is that I get to shoot it. Alot. I reload and I am putting rounds through these things as fast as I can put them together. I don't even bother keeping round counts on them anymore. I can tell you that I have gone through 3 boxes of 500 158 grain lswc bullets in the last 2 months and that is about average for me. The Taurus gets it's fair share of that and it has held up just fine. If it breaks I'll admit that I'm wrong but until then, I consider it as good as the others and I do trust it to work when it is supposed to.

I do have a S&W 638 and in the past owned a model 19 and though they are good guns, they are not "that" far above the others and besides S&W's have been known to have their faults as well. I have seen people have problems with them, just as I have seen problems with about every other brand at some point. The fact that they cost more does not make them better.

This is getting long, but I remember one instance in particular of a certain yuppie type fella that ragged on me long and hard about my "lower standard" Taurus at the range one morning. He was shooting a brand new S&W 340PD. It was an expensive, pretty, top of the line gun. (I know it was because he was really enjoying telling me so. ) On the 3rd shot out of the second cylinder, the cylinder crane broke and the whole cylinder assembly fell right out of the gun and landed on the bench when he opened it up. Being the helpful fella that I am, I offered to let him shoot my Taurus so that he wouldn't have to waste his trip. ;)

Point is, they can all have issues. I spend my money on what works for me to do the job that I ask it to do. As mentioned, the best thing to do is pick a gun from a quality manufacturer, check it out thouroghly before you buy it and you should get a tool that will outlast you. If I was only going to have one, my choice would be a 4" GP100 but thank God I am not limited that way! lol

August 31, 2008, 10:39 AM
Any used pre-lock S&W K or L frame in good working condition should do.

August 31, 2008, 10:43 AM
A used Ruger Security Six.

August 31, 2008, 11:41 AM
I've owned all of the brands discussed, and still have several. The only guns I have had problems with were two of the four Taurii I've owned. One shot two FEET low at 25 yards, the other had a serious misfire problem. Since both of those guns were purchased as duty guns, both were summarily rejected. (Their customer Service people were AWFUL). If you know your way around good triggers, you'll appreciate the Smith & Wesson guns, though the others aren't far behind, especially in single-action mode. I personally think the Rossis are a bargain, worth what you pay for them, and sometimes more. But right now, if I needed another 357, and didn't want to pay top dollar for it, I'd call CDNN Investments and order a Smith 65 or 66, they had them in the last flyer for right around $300, some were less, depending on condition and such. Many were PD trade-ins, and IIRC, all were 4-inch guns. Most have seen little use, and display mostly carry-wear. I bought my 65-5 3-inch from them several years ago, and it's not the prettiest gun I ever owned (PD trade-in) but it shoots better than I do, and the trigger is to die for. I think I need several more, actually.


August 31, 2008, 11:45 AM
First off,

Taurus does NOT make a revolver as good as Ruger & S&W.

In a 4" .357 I'd choose a Ruger GP100, SP101, S&W 686, 60, 620.

ther is only one manufacturer I will not buy. Taurus.

Don't be penny wise and pound foolish. Buy the better gun not the cheaper one.

Lucky Strike
August 31, 2008, 11:57 AM
I chose a GP100 and one of the main reasons was that I felt very confident (given it's reputation for reliability) that I could buy a used one and still have a completely reliable gun.

Was able to get it for $370 so I saved some good cash and have a gun that i'll likely be able to pass on to my grandchildren

Don't have any experience with a Taurus but in my case of just goin' off of people's comments on boards like these i decided that a used ruger was a more reliable option then a new taurus. My father in law does have a Tracker in .17hmr though that i really want to shoot

August 31, 2008, 11:57 AM
S&W 686+ 4"GREAT TRIGGER,Accurate!

Old Grump
August 31, 2008, 12:01 PM
I like my Dan Wesson with the 4" barrel because it is accurate with any ammo at 25 yds and I can keep a 6" group at 100 yds with the 158 gr SP using the 4" barrel. You can get a 'Pistol Pack' with a Dan Wesson frame, along with 2 1/2", 4", 6", and 8" barrels.

August 31, 2008, 01:06 PM
First off,

Taurus does NOT make a revolver as good as Ruger & S&W.

In a 4" .357 I'd choose a Ruger GP100, SP101, S&W 686, 60, 620.

ther is only one manufacturer I will not buy. Taurus.

Don't be penny wise and pound foolish. Buy the better gun not the cheaper one.

Actually when i got my Taurus it was the better gun. Both smiths they had where rough and grind. The cylinders needed to be pushed out of the frame for reloads and the double action was like pulling a chain thru sand. The rugers i held where okay but not as great as people make them sound. For home defence and just range time a Taurus is a great choice.

If you've never fired a Taurus or are only going off of what your friend of a friend has said don't comments about things you don't know. Seems to be a running theme of this board. If its not Smith or Ruger its not worth considering.

August 31, 2008, 01:21 PM
what I currently have: blued Ruger Security Six

what I have owned in the past: blued Ruger GP100; stainless Ruger GP100; blued S&W 19; stainless S&W 65; Taurus 66; stainless S&W 686; stainless Colt King Cobra

fav: stainless Ruger GP100; S&W 686

'shoulda kept' Colt King Cobra

per Jessica Biel's character in Blade Trinity...'Lucky 7 with silver hollowpoints' (referring to a S&W 686 +)

August 31, 2008, 03:40 PM
I have a friend who bought budget-fitting new blued Taurus 4" 66 7-shooter. We swapped springs - regripped it - and he broke it in shooting .38s. Hard for me to say, it really is now a decent revolver - as was his little 5-shooter SS 4" .45 ACP Tracker. No, they will never operate, last, or resell like a S&W, but it fit his budget. He keeps it stoked with +P 158gr LSWCHPs for home/self defense.

I shoot a lot more than he does... I reload. I would rather have fewer but higher quality firearms. I recently divested myself of some interesting, but aggravatingy unkept when new due to poor QC, firearms - most of my Rugers. I did this in time to see new GP100s and the new 4" RHs with excellent quality, making me wonder whether or not Ruger's visually impaired QC inspectors had finally retired. At any rate, my S&Ws have continued to increase in number - including those with the Infernal Lock and MIM parts - they make fine revolvers today.

Okay, if you can swing it... a new S&W 620 gets you a 4" partially lugged barrel, much more traditional and proper-looking, IMHO, than the full lug of the 686, much less the full shroud of the GP100. It runs $569-$599 new locally. The 4" 686+ runs ~$30-$40 more. The best buy is the $719 I spent a couple of months back on my 627 Pro. This is a 4" tapered lug N-frame .357M with an eight round capacity. It will take moonclips - and you can easily change the front sight - without tools! It also has a custom barrel, chamfered charge holes, is moonclip ready, and has a 'tuned' action. A lot of goodies for, at most, $150 more than the 620. The 620 is no slouch, by any means.

My 627 Pro, with the same HiViz sight I use on my 625JM shown above it, is below:

Good luck!


August 31, 2008, 10:31 PM

As for a comparison of S&W versus Taurus here's another take on that.

S&W,Ruger, and Taurus,even Rossi make good sturdy serviceable revolvers ( Links on all that can be brought forth too if need be).

As for a supposed superiority of one over another,nope. No always and not under all or most conditions.

When one buys the revolver, or any gun for that matter, it's wise to inspect it very closely. One needs to have a good working knowledge of that. If not then the help of good mentor is called for. That or someone who has a excellent knowledge of such things.

Then one can purchase,clean before shooting,get aquainted with the gun, and then go break the gun in properly.

Proper shooting techniques and plenty of practice get thrown into the mix to make one proficient.

This helps eliminate any number of stumbling blocks.

September 1, 2008, 01:35 AM
Based on my experiences with the Rossi Model 972, I'd not hesitate to suggest one to somebody looking to buy a quality .357 for not a lot of money. In the short amount of time the 972 has been in my house, it has had 400rds of .38 +P and .357 fired through it. I know that's not a lot, but I figure if there were going to be any defects within the revolver, they would've shown themselves.
I'd rather have a S&W 627 Pro or a 686P if I had the money, but I wouldn't be at all disappointed if all I could afford was a Rossi, and in all likelyhood a 4" .357 will be the next addition to my collection.

September 1, 2008, 06:22 PM
Thanks to all of those who replied. I didn't intend to start a ruger-taurus-smith war, I was just wondering what some other suggestions other than ruger and taurus people had for someone looking into .357's.

September 1, 2008, 06:54 PM
My experience with Taurus is very limited. Three friends had different models and were all at least 10 years old. All three had serious mechanical and material problems. I have no real experience with newer Taurus guns. Maybe they got their act together as of late.

Ruger makes an excellent revolver for the money. I have shot a few examples of the the SP101 and GP100 and all were well-built revolvers. The trigger-pulls were not nearly as refined as S&W's, but none of the examples I shot had any mechanical or material issues and worked perfectly. Again, my experience with Ruger revolvers is relatively limited, but all positive to date.

In the last two years I have purchased several used S&W revolvers. Three were a 4" model 65, 4" model 66, and a 4" 686. All were pre-lock and mim-free (not that it makes a difference to some people). All are excellent revolvers and the average price was $315 each (after a little haggling), purchased from dealers... not private sellers. All were in excellent condition and needed only a good cleaning. The 66 showed the most wear, but was perfectly servicable the day I brought it home. It has slight end-shake which is easily fixed whenever I feel the need to address it. The other two are practically new and lock-up and time as well as any new gun I've handled and shot.

The 66 and 65 are basically the same gun, with the exception of adjustable vs. fixed sights. They are the internediate-sized K-frame and carry and easily. They are not intended to shoot a steady diet of magnum loads, rather, they are intended to be fed .38spl for regular practice and only occasional magnum ammunition. The 686 has the slightly larger and robust L-frame and supposedly will handle a steady diet of magnum ammunition without issue.

I strongly favor S&W's and have carried one daily for over 10 years (model 642). I have used their customer/warranty-service and couldn't be happier with the results. I have no complaints with the comapny other than their insistance on using internal locks on new guns. Since plenty of pre-lock revolvers are out there, it's really a moot point for me. That's an argument for another day, though.

Were it me and I needed a .357, I'd look first for a lightly used K or L frame S&W. In the unlikely event one could ot be found for a decent price ($275-$400) I'd look at a new or lightly used Ruger. Both companies have a pretty solid track record for quality and customer service and used examples abound for very reasonable prices.

Brian Williams
September 1, 2008, 07:19 PM
One of the Best 4" 357s is a S&W 581.

My second vote goes to the following
S&W 19, 13, 65, 66
S&W 586
Ruger Six series

September 1, 2008, 08:17 PM
My personal experiences have turned me to S&W and Ruger. Every Taurus I have had has had issues, albeit minor for the most part. My friends and family who have had Taurus guns have had problems with all of them.

My most recent model 85 decided to break the firing pin return spring the last time I shot it. My friend had his PT145 blow apart in his hands after about 200 rounds and his Gaucho .45 Colt never worked from the beginning (and still didn't after 5, yes FIVE, trips back to the factory). My uncle was blessed with two PT-92's that will not function regardless of who cleans, shoots, or works on them, except for Taurus who can't find anything wrong.

Now I am not a "brand whore" and I know that other guns blow up, but that is just to much for me to trust Taurus.

September 1, 2008, 08:42 PM
I had to send my GP-100 back to the factory for repairs. After the repairs, it's been 100% reliable, the trigger is great, and I point naturally and shoot great with it. I even bought another one, and gave it to my brother.

I had two K-frame Smiths chambered in .38 special. They were perfectly reliable guns for me and very accurate, but not as accurate to me as the GP-100. I sold one to a friend, and gave one to another friend. I prefer the trigger on the GP-100, and I feel the size/weight between the two is a wash, even though they were K and not L frames. Practically speaking, they're all about the same size and weight.

I also prefer the ergonomics and adjustable sights of the GP-100.

Man, you just gotta find what works for you, and probably buy and sell a few guns before you find it.

I also can't stand the locks on new Smiths and Tauri. There's no need for a key lock on any gun. It's just wrong.

September 1, 2008, 09:38 PM
A 4" S&W 686 should be found for $400. Great shooter with a great trigger.


September 1, 2008, 09:40 PM
That's the ONE I'd get.

September 1, 2008, 09:47 PM
GP100 without a doubt, solid and dependable.

September 1, 2008, 10:06 PM
A Model 19 or 66 Smith would be my choice. :D

September 1, 2008, 10:07 PM
Easy choice.

Summer gun is my Model 19-4

and just got this for my winter gun. I have to replace the grips before winter though.

September 1, 2008, 10:12 PM
My taurus 2" 357 has been great. I've never had an issue. However, in a 4" revolver, my opinion is that you can't get a finer revolver for the money than a used s&w model 19.

September 2, 2008, 07:08 AM
IMHO those Rugers are butt ugly.:neener:;)


September 2, 2008, 08:30 AM
586 or 686 s&w.

September 2, 2008, 02:40 PM
I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions for good 4" .357's?

BTW, you don't mention the purpose you need a 4" .357 for. I think you need to be more specific as to your needs and I apologize in advance if you have, didn't read the thread yet.

Interestingly, the negative comments are on the boards, not from people in-person. [/shrug]

Well, I've owned a few, carried them as CCW's and got rid of them. There is nothing wrong with Taurus revolvers but they have a tendency to lock up every so often, the explanation I got was from a friend was that Taurus needs to skimp somewhere to keep their prices reasonable and they can't skimp on the finish so it means somewhere in the building or assembling that they skimp figuring that they will deal with any problems on an individual basis. This friend is an FFL and has much experience. There is no doubt that any revolver can lock up, even a Ruger or Smith, but with my two Tauruses (905 & 44c) it was too often for comfort. Both were new BTW and new guns do that sometimes. FWIW

"There's a reason most Smiths won't work on em. They're junk."

Over-exageration, they are not junk, they are just not reliable enough to depend on when your life is at stake. Most Smiths prefer not to work on them because most Smiths are honest and will tell you that they can get them into perfect condition but the end result will be be an $800 Taurus that will still only be worth $350 on the open market.

the primary use would be home defense and at the range.

GP-100 or Sp-101
You will never break them, they keep their market value and go up in value if you customize (like say the trigger), they are stronger than any comparable S&W or Taurus and as reliable as S&W if not moreso.

Seems to be a running theme of this board. If its not Smith or Ruger its not worth considering.

Unlike other boards, THR members usually do not bash or dismiss something unless there is a reason or there are true life experiences that prove to be the majority of cases. Sometimes people do not express themselves well, and well intentioned answers written in the usual internet shorhand are interpreted as a bash. For the most part, this is not a Chevy VS Ford issue, this is members who are acting like friends and hoping to help you make the most well-informed decision you can make. The theme is NOT mine is bigger than yours, the theme is are you getting the best value for your dollar and is your life worth the difference of saving $100?

September 2, 2008, 03:01 PM
Butt ugly (beauty is in the eyes of the beholder) yet bull strong.:neener:

I agree the DA pull on my Model 19-4 is outstanding, but the work done on my Security Six makes it almost as good.:evil:

September 2, 2008, 09:39 PM
george29, primary uses for the .357 would be a range gun and home defense.

September 2, 2008, 10:10 PM
I used to think Ruger Sixes were ugly too. But then they started to grow on me. And after passing up a Security Six, I happened on a very nice Speed Six that is one of my favorite firearms. Of course, this one is only a .38, but the Sixes are wonderful, and I am looking for a Security Six to add to my collection:

If you must have 4", can't go wrong with any of the S&W L-frames - here's my 681 - balances great, and affordable.

My favorite .357..... :uhoh:

September 2, 2008, 10:28 PM
The people who criticize taurus I think are just being snobby.

I have a Smith, several Rugers, and a Taurus. The Rugers are built like tanks. The Smith is somewhere between a Ruger and a fine Swiss watch. The Taurus has had more than its share of problems, and when I called Customer Service to get it fixed (right out of the box) they put me on hold and never came back on the line. I kind of like the Taurus in spite of that; I had a local gunsmith fix the original problems and make it safe to shoot, and I recently bought an aftermarket hardened base pin that should help with most of the remaining problems. And I should probably fire-lap the barrel to smooth out the tool marks to lessen its leading problems.

I could never recommend a Taurus, based on my experience. But if you buy one anyway and get a good one, I'm really happy for you. Even if you get a bad one, it will look real nice in your safe (that's one thing Taurus doesn't skimp on)

September 3, 2008, 12:15 AM
Find yourself one of these, Model 28-2 Highway Patrolman.

September 3, 2008, 07:51 AM
If buying new, my money would be on the Ruger GP100. Used, a pre-lock S&W 686

September 3, 2008, 09:17 AM
Can someone give me an idea of what an average price for a used stainless S&W 686 4" in good condition would be? Around $550-$600? Thanks.

September 3, 2008, 10:49 AM
I paid $400, out-the-door ($375+tax) for mine last month at a gun shop. It is in excellent condition and shows very little signs of use and no signs of carry whatsoever. It is a pre-lock, no-MIM model.

Of course, it shows signs of use now. Great gun!


September 3, 2008, 11:40 AM
Sold my GP100 when money was real bad (4 kids in college bad). Been crying ever since. That was one fine piece of metal work and accurate.

Get a will love it. The guy I sold it to still sends me Christmas cards!

September 3, 2008, 07:45 PM
I saw a 686 (-4, maybe) in a shop yesterday marked at $500. It was in good shape, and I'm sure they would've taken less.

September 3, 2008, 11:07 PM
I would not buy a S&W, they are junk.......but if you know of any for sell let me know! :evil: :D

September 4, 2008, 12:34 AM
I agree. I try to take them all off the market so that no one else has to suffer them. I try to do the same with Colts. It's just a public service.

September 4, 2008, 11:04 PM
I have owned and shot the Ruger GP100 and S&W 686. I like the S&W better, and have sold off the Ruger. The 686 has been around for a while now and is a solid gun. You can also get it with a 7 round cylinder. Good luck.

September 4, 2008, 11:05 PM
Ruger GP100. Ought to be able to find a very good used one for $350 or thereabouts.

September 5, 2008, 09:59 AM
I lean a little bit to the GP Ruger side. The S&W 686 is a fine revolver, but the Ruger is built bank vault solid. Look at both side by side and you will see the difference.
I am not a big fan of Taurus as I feel their quality can be a hit or miss deal.

September 5, 2008, 10:09 AM
I went to the gunshop the other day and held both the 686 and the GP100. They both felt great in hand, and both had the same grips, but I think I'm leaning more toward the GP100, due to price and I felt it pointed a little more naturally. I have not yet shot either model and didn't test the trigger pull in the store, It's bad etiquette from what I understand, especially from someone with little experience.

September 5, 2008, 10:22 AM

I would have to disagree, testing the trigger pull (dry firing) of a revolver before purchasing is a must to me. The equivalent of test driving a car. The amount of money paid, the importance of a good trigger and hand fit to being effective with a revolver make this critical. Add to this the potential danger of needing the gun and not being effective with it seal the deal for me.

The only exception I would make to this would be rimfires and certain Colts that need a trip back to the factory in the event of a broken firing pin. Even then snap caps are the simple solution.

I have to assume that any shop or person that really expects to sell revolvers accepts that the potential buyer (if at all well informed) must dry fire. I would be highly skeptical of any seller that refused you this based on "eitiquette".

September 5, 2008, 10:30 AM
rswartsell, I didn't write that last post the way I wanted, sorry for the confusion. When I was at the gunshop the other day looking at revolvers, I was just there seeing what they had and to see if I could hold several to get a feel for them. I don't plan on buying one for a while, as I'm new to handguns and I'll be taking a safety course in a couple of weeks. When it comes time for me to buy one, I'll be more thorough in the process of choosing one. The guy at the gunshop was great and very helpful and spent about an hour and a half talking guns with me. I didn't bother to ask to dry fire it as I was just there to get info and look around. Maybe next time I go in I'll ask to test the trigger pull. Thanks for the info, it's good to know that it's not completely out of the question to dry fire it in the store. How are you supposed to point the gun in the store to test the trigger? Especially if there are a lot of people in there? Towards the floor or angled up towards the top of the wall? I'm curious now.

September 5, 2008, 10:40 AM
What to look for when dry firing a potential purchase;

1. does the trigger action operate smoothly (or can you feel a lot of mechanical bumps and grinds as it cycles)?

2. is the length of travel necessary to drop the hammer when operating double action excessively loooong (or possibly disconcertingly short)?

3. does your hand remain in correct firing position through the entire DA cycle or are you "reaching" or resetting your hand position or grip during the pull?

4. does the trigger pull (necessary lbs of pressure to move the trigger) remain constant or does it "load" (require increasing pressure the further along the cycle it goes)?

5. constant or not is the trigger pull excessively heavy or light?

Along with the excellent sticky about evaluating a revolver before purchase, I will without fail observe these factors by dry firing (and if possible live firing also). Unusual characteristics observed during this exercise can be the warning of expensive work required, the gun is not a good choice for you or worse that an amature has attempted to modify the trigger and possibly rendered the piece an unsafe time bomb.

Just my .02 cent dose of humble opinion.

September 5, 2008, 10:44 AM
Thanks again. Good info. Whats the proper direction to point the gun when you are dry firing in the store?

September 5, 2008, 10:45 AM
I assume the same weaver grip and stance I will use when firing, directing the muzzle toward a ceiling corner away from anyone who may be present. Preferably toward an outside wall away from the parking lot. I then focus very carefully on what I am feeling (maybe hearing). Etiquette does indeed demand that at no time will I direct the muzzle toward a person that I'm not wanting to shoot.

p.s. Forgive me if this is obvious, or if it sounds as if I am "speaking down" but always, always the first thing done when handling a gun is to swing out the cylinder or otherwise insure it is not loaded. Even with the gun the shop has just pulled from the display case and even if he just did the same thing before putting it on the counter. This along with obvious care not to point the muzzle in an unsafe direction and you should be fine with the gun shop and it's other patrons.

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