LCR Alternatives


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2WheelsGood
February 13, 2011, 07:50 PM
It looks like I'm going to buy my first revolver. My wife is having a hard time gaining any confidence with any of my autos (she's left handed, has a tough time racking the slide, clearing jams), so she suggested maybe I should get a revolver for her to try. Not being one to turn down the green light on any gun purchase, I think I'm going to take her up on it.

The .357 Ruger LCR is at the top of my list (with .38s for her to start with). My concern is its reputation for being a bit on the snappy side. I'm doing everything I can to make this confidence-inspiring for her. Is there something similar (price and caliber) that's a bit less snappy? Or is it really not that bad?

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340PD
February 13, 2011, 07:52 PM
If you handload you can mitigate any felt recoil. 148gr wadcutters will shoot soft and still provide a defense load.

Nematocyst
February 13, 2011, 08:01 PM
Smith Wesson 642 with full grips, shooting lighter loads.

I can do 100 rnds with total control and no discomfort,
and I have small hands.

The key is full grips.

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=67639&d=1195548166

mgregg85
February 13, 2011, 08:10 PM
I just bought a .38 special LCR and it was a bit snappy with +p rounds but not unreasonable. It did feel less snappy than some S&W snubs i've shot.

The .357 version is a few ounces heavier, it shouldn't be too bad with light .38 special loads.

oneounceload
February 13, 2011, 08:14 PM
If this is not for CCW purposes, look at K frames with 4" barrels; otherwise look at the steel J-frames or Colt snubbies

Flint Ridge
February 13, 2011, 08:17 PM
K frame is a good idea. SP-101 would work, but the key for me is use of heavy wadcutters 148 or 158 gr - you would be amazed at how much softer these shoot.

2WheelsGood
February 13, 2011, 08:20 PM
If this is not for CCW purposes, look at K frames with 4" barrels; otherwise look at the steel J-frames or Colt snubbiesInitially it's more just to get her comfortable, but definitely CCW is the ultimate goal.

Nematocyst, that looks like a great option. I hadn't seen one with a full grip.

The wadcutters sound like a great idea no matter what I choose.

Nematocyst
February 13, 2011, 08:22 PM
2Wheel, full grips are great,
at least to start with.
You can always downsize later.

K's are an excellent idea.
I'd opt for a 3" barrel.

SW mod 60, 64 or 65 are nice
and eat both .38 spl and .357 mag.

2WheelsGood
February 13, 2011, 08:25 PM
...and eat both .38 spl and .357 mag.
I should have mentioned .357 is a requirement. Might as well get two guns in one!

btg3
February 13, 2011, 08:29 PM
...a tough time racking the slide

Has your wife looked at this link?
http://www.corneredcat.com/RunGun/rack.aspx

2WheelsGood
February 13, 2011, 09:22 PM
Has your wife looked at this link?
http://www.corneredcat.com/RunGun/rack.aspx
Yes, definitely. Wonderful resource! She can rack it. She's taken lessons, and she's been through CCW training all using a Glock 19. It's more that it's taking away from her enjoyment enough that she's not motivated to shoot very often. I also think being a lefty isn't helping. The slide release is simply on the wrong side for a lefty. I know there are a few true ambidextrous autos, but I'm hesitant to spend the money if it's not going to fix the problem. I think if she can get really comfortable with the revolver, and get used to the noise and recoil, she'll find her way back to the autos where she can tackle the rest of her dislikes. Though I'd be more than happy if she stuck with revolvers forever... as long as she sticks with something.

TrakHack
February 13, 2011, 10:32 PM
I think if she can get really comfortable with the revolver, and get used to the noise and recoil, she'll find her way back to the autos where she can tackle the rest of her dislikes.

Eh... I love my Colt Cobra but the way I got used to the noise and recoil was to get the .22 version. I don't like practicing with the .38, but I *really* like shooting the .22. The .38 gets carried, but the .22 gets 95% of the range time.

I haven't shot the LCR (it was on my short-list of guns, though), but I suspect if noise and recoil are dislikes there are better revolver options out there.

halfmoonclip
February 13, 2011, 11:32 PM
Having somewhat the same issue with my 105 lb daughter; even the 148 WCs were too snappy in a Smith 640 Centennial.
I would still suggest the weight of the steel framed Centennial to mitigate recoil and the humpback shape allows a lower bore axis; you can choke higher on the frame. My daughter has shot rifles, but handguns were a little intimidating. I taught her to shoot double action with a M63 in .22rf, but the bang and bounce of the .38 snub were too much.
I dug out the original, smaller grips for the gun to better fit her hands. Then a buddy cast me some 107 gr bullets, and I found some data I could use with Trailboss powder. The lighter bullets really lighten the felt recoil.
Eventually, I'll turn up the power level a bit.
Moon

Magnumite
February 13, 2011, 11:43 PM
If you want to keep her interested in handguns, a small frame like the LCR will discourage her quick, even with wadcutter loads. I've shot my LCR with 148gr loads that go 625 fps out of a 6" barrel and it is still quite snappy and for the novice would not be comfortable. I'm don't have a problem with heavy recoil so that evaluation comes with experience. The LCR and other guns like it not not beginner's guns.

Go with what the some of the others have suggested, a medium frame revolver in 357 Magnum. Use lower powered loads until she gains more experience and confidence.

As an instructor, my students new to handguns typically prefer the medium frame revolvers in 4" to 6" barrels over anything else. That's guys and gals.

Zundfolge
February 13, 2011, 11:45 PM
I'll second the SP101. Its a little bit heavier than a J frame but the weight in a small .357mag is actually a plus.

2WheelsGood
February 14, 2011, 09:09 AM
I've shot my LCR with 148gr loads that go 625 fps out of a 6" barrel and it is still quite snappy and for the novice would not be comfortable.
Out of curiosity, is your LCR a .357 or a .38? I see the .357 is about 4 ounces heavier, so that may help a little bit.

We're going to try to look at some tonight. The SP101 sounds like it might be worth a try. It's a fair amount heavier, and the price is still reasonable. The S&W 642 is on the short list too. She liked it at least from the photo Nematocyst posted. Ultimately I'll let her decide, though unfortunately finding a store around here with a range to test 'em out is tough. But hey, if she still doesn't like whatever we get, I've got another excuse to buy more! :D

Thanks to all.

waldron
February 14, 2011, 10:03 AM
My wife was afraid of pistols having shot a full-house 357 once.

I started her with a Ruger 22LR semi-auto. Nothing more powerful for the first three of four trips to the range. That got her used to the idea that the gun was not going to hurt. It taught her how to line up the sights and trigger control. I did not have to reload anything, either.

If you don't already have a 22 pistol, what better excuse could you have. (money I spend on my eight-year-old grandson doesn't count, too.)

Try it, really, try it. It really works.

2WheelsGood
February 14, 2011, 10:41 AM
Try it, really, try it. It really works.I have a Walther P22, and she likes shooting that. But that gun is also incredibly easy to rack, and it's very small and manageable compared to my larger caliber guns. So I'm hoping she'll gain more confidence with the revolver then move back to messin' around with the other autos.

Kal52
February 14, 2011, 05:57 PM
just to throw in another idea, you may look for a 327, or 32h&R..2 guns in one and then some.

you can shoot a variety of ammo through them, and are very light recoiling.
and as far as ccw they would work well, and good for small game/plinking etc.

I too love my sp101s, very nice revolvers, I have the 357 and 32 H&R.

Good luck

Cemo
February 14, 2011, 07:46 PM
The wife and I both have SP101's loaded with 110 gr .357s.

bergmen
February 14, 2011, 07:58 PM
Smith Wesson 642 with full grips, shooting lighter loads.

I can do 100 rnds with total control and no discomfort,
and I have small hands.

The key is full grips.

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=67639&d=1195548166
I agree completely. I have the 442 with a full grip like you show here (and also the LCR). I MUCH prefer shooting the Airweight, much more comfortable.

http://inlinethumb33.webshots.com/12832/2195079140053667879S600x600Q85.jpg

Personally, I would discourage .357 Magnum in a handgun this size. It will be brutal to shoot and very hard to get excited to practice with. I only go with full size .357's (like my GP100 with a 4" barrel) even though they are chunky to carry.

JMHO

Dan

2WheelsGood
February 14, 2011, 08:07 PM
Just came home with an SP101. Thanks for all the help. She mostly picked it out herself with a bit of guidance from me. If she hates it I'm blaming you guys. :D

Flint Ridge
February 14, 2011, 08:16 PM
What barrel lenght did you take home?

That is a solid item, start with the .38 specials of course and if you have something in .22 to start with that is even better. Let us know what she thinks.

Oh, I would do a lot of dryfire work ahead of time and get a really big target 3' or so and use it a 7 yards. Letting her see it hit paper really helps. Otherwise if you use some 8" target - who knows and she might get frustrated.

Nematocyst
February 14, 2011, 09:26 PM
The 101 is a fine choice.

Bergmen, nice looking 442.
I still plan on trading my 642 for one.

2WheelsGood
February 14, 2011, 09:34 PM
What barrel lenght did you take home?.357 2.25". Also ordered a Hogue grip for it. Got some .38 wadcutters to start her off. I think it's going to work out nicely.

Nematocyst
February 14, 2011, 09:57 PM
.357 2.25". Also ordered a Hogue grip for it. .38 wadcutters to start her off. Good choices, dude.

Magnumite
February 15, 2011, 01:58 AM
2WheelsGood, my LCR is a 38 Spec gun. I am sure it would help. My old model 36 was almost 23 ounces and it wasn't gentle, though not fierce either.

ArchAngelCD
February 15, 2011, 04:13 AM
I'm surprised your wife picked the SP101, it's on the large side for it's weight. The S&W M60, M640 or M649 is slightly smaller with better lines IMO while they still weight enough to take the bite out of the ammo.

I own a M640 and it's fairly comfortable to shoot with .357 Magnum ammo or at least no worse than a M642 or M442 with .38 Special +P ammo is to shoot.

http://i116.photobucket.com/albums/o26/ArchAngelCD/twins-1.jpg

Tacoma
February 15, 2011, 06:59 AM
Anything in a similar weight range is going to be "snappy". If you started her with 38 target loads, she might be all right but if your thinking full bore loads, she may shy from the gun quickly. Worse yet 99.9% of people who try 357 in a sub 15 oz gun are going to HATE it. I doubt your experience will be any different. It's not snappy, it painful. It's unrealistic to think she will be different.
That said, she is smart in wanting a revolver. It will suit her much better to learn on and is simple as a hammer to use under stress.
I would point you towards a S&W K frame in a 2.5-4" barrel to start . That will give you the extra weight to absorb recoil and let her work on her comfort/accuracy skills. It will also give you HUGE options for grips to help control recoil. When the time comes for CCW, she may want something smaller and lighter but then she will have an excuse and the skills to move her down in size. My second choice would be a full steel/stainless J frame S&W . Same size as the J frame/LCR but a full 9 oz heavier. Not a great learnign gun, but acceptable.

You need to understand that like golf clubs you can't get one gun to do everything even remotely well. CCW needs and lthe ideal skills building needs are not closely related in most cases.

hth

2WheelsGood
February 15, 2011, 08:59 AM
Worse yet 99.9% of people who try 357 in a sub 15 oz gun are going to HATE it.

Agreed, and I have no intention of pushing her to try a .357 at all. I got the .357 for me. :D

I own a M640 and it's fairly comfortable to shoot with .357 Magnum ammo or at least no worse than a M642 or M442 with .38 Special +P ammo is to shoot.The M640 is beautiful but a bit more money. This is an experiment, so cost was an issue. If she ends up loving it, I'll let her decide if she wants to spend more money on something else.

2WheelsGood, my LCR is a 38 Spec gun. I am sure it would help.I was shocked how much lighter the .357 version of the LCR was than the SP101. It was a huge difference. I can't imagine yet another 4 ounces less! Admittedly I wanted the LCR more than the SP101, but I still pushed her towards the SP101. It does feel good in the hand. Hopefully the Hogue grip makes it even better.

Thaddeus Jones
February 15, 2011, 11:29 AM
Colt D-frame.

The Cobra and Detective Special. Durable, light weight - especially the Cobra - easily concealed, six shot -extra round and won't hurt your hand when practicing. TJ

alemonkey
February 15, 2011, 11:12 PM
Good choice on the SP101. I picked one up for my mom as her first gun. With .38's it's pretty mild. Much easier to shoot than my 642. With +P's that gun is just downright nasty. The SP101 has a full grip and a lot more weight, so recoil is very manageable.

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