What revolvers are good?


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bigalexe
September 5, 2011, 02:35 PM
Ok this might sound like a dumb question but who still makes a good revolver? Alternately what types/models are still in wide circulation for a decent price.

The only current revolver manufacturer I can name offhand is Taurus.

I have a few threads bouncing around I created today regarding my dream list and on that list is a defensive center-fire pistol. Now I like semi-autos and can handle them decently but sometimes if I'm having a bad day I can't rack the slide on some of them. Even my .22lr semi-auto gives me a little trouble at the end of a long day. Someone saw me having difficulty with a brand new 9mm and they recommended I maybe look into a DA revolver instead of a semi-auto.

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Blue Brick
September 5, 2011, 02:43 PM
Ruger.

http://ruger.com/products/gp100/index.html

http://ruger.com/products/gp100DE/models.html

357 Terms
September 5, 2011, 02:46 PM
The only current revolver manufacturer I can name offhand is Taurus.

Smith & Wesson, Ruger, Charter Arms and some others.

You really must be an auto guy. Over 800 posts on this forum and you don't know that S&W and Ruger make revolvers.

Sam1911
September 5, 2011, 02:56 PM
You'll probably slap yourself for forgetting the biggest current revolver manufacturer -- S&W (http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Category4_750001_750051_757767_-1_757751_757751_image). They still make a LOT of fine revolvers, from J-frame pocket snubbies up to the huge .500 Magnum X-Frame.

Like most other consumer items, there are folks who feel that they ain't as good as they once were. Various manufacturing process changes (MIM parts) and legal concessions (internal locks) make some folks' skin crawl. Others report that manufactuing tolarances are tighter than at some eras before and your chances of getting a great gun are very good these days.

Ruger (http://www.ruger.com/index.html)still makes the SP101, the GP100, the Redhawk and SuperRedhawk, and the cool "Alaskan" big-bore snubby, as well as the new LCR polymer-framed snubby. Rugers are different, but almost everyone agrees they make a heck of a solid gun that is accurate and will still be working perfectly when your great great grandkids are shooting them.

They also make their Blackhawk, Super-Blackhawk, Vaquero, Single-Six, and Bearcat lines of single-actions.

Colt (http://www.coltsmfg.com/Catalog/ColtRevolvers.aspx)does actually still make a few revolvers, though all versions of the old Single Action Army.

Taurus (http://www.taurususa.com/revolvers.cfm), Charter (http://www.charterfirearms.com/products/Charter_Firearms_products.html), and Rossi (http://www.rossiusa.com/product-list.cfm?category=1)are still around making more budget-minded guns.

Uberti (http://www.uberti.com/firearms/army_navy_conversion_and_open_top.php), Pietta (http://www.pietta.us/products/Breachloadinguns/gallery/index.html), and Beretta (http://www.berettausa.com/shop-by-department/firearms/handguns/revolvers/)import single-action replica guns, mostly for the Cowboy Action market.

And there are a few of the "ring of fire" gun manufacturers from the Phillipines and such who, IIRC, are making some very value-priced models you might see from time to time.

ColtPythonElite
September 5, 2011, 03:01 PM
Dig a little deeper in your wallet and shop for a Colt King Cobra. Sure, it will cost a few bucks more upfront, but your money is safer in a Colt revolver than the stock market....The good part is the KC has been said to be the strongest mid-framed revolver made.....or do what at least 50% of the responders to this thread will likely say..."Get a Ruger GP100".:D

Sam1911
September 5, 2011, 03:11 PM
If you want a fantastic gun that is available in the market now for a screaming good price, consider a S&W Model 64.

Right now security-company trade-in guns are coming up for sale every month or two at the big whole-salers like J&G (http://www.jgsales.com/) and CDNN (http://www.cdnninvestments.com/). Usually these are right at $250-$300, for a gun that was carried a lot but shot very little.

(Here are some: http://www.jgsales.com/index.php/smith-wesson/revolver/cPath/16_211_431)

The 64 is the stainless version of the old reliable Model 10 (or the original M&P if you want to go back a ways) and they are a heck of a gun. Fixed sights, .38 Special, 4" barrel, and available as either square-butt or round-butt guns -- sometimes even converted to DAO, which can be a plus.

Really, excellent gun for the money.

Guillermo
September 5, 2011, 03:16 PM
but who still makes a good revolver

Smith and Taurus are a mixed bag. A total crap shoot.

Add an idiotic lock design on the Smith and Taurus is a better buy. Both are sketchy.

Folks love their Rugers. Cast, not forged. I am not a fan but they have a huge fan base. They do have their attributes, strength being the biggest if you like shooting ultra hot rounds.

A newbie needs to be very careful in the used market, where the great guns are. I would read the sticky at the top of the revolver section on how to check out a revolver. Even if you buy new, check it out. QC and pride in workmanship is not what it used to be. In fact, looking at the double action revolver market, I would say it is gone.

Shoot before you buy.

38sp4life
September 5, 2011, 03:39 PM
Charter Arms makes different calibers also Armscor makes some really nice 38specials. Yes we all know and love the S&W,s & Colts. But it all depends on application of the "use". Home, range, target ? If it is hard for one to " rack the slide" I would get a revolver with a hammer. You can fire it in single -or-double action. A 357 will shoot 357,s and 38 specials. ( please remember you can not shoot a 357 in a 38 caliber it will not work ). But it all depends on what that person likes and feels good with. I would go to and check out different shops and feel whats,s out there to get an idea .

wlewisiii
September 5, 2011, 03:49 PM
If you want a fantastic gun that is available in the market now for a screaming good price, consider a S&W Model 64.
(snip)
Really, excellent gun for the money.

+1000 to what he said. My 64 is probably the best $239 I ever spent.

Wolfeye
September 5, 2011, 04:04 PM
My "dream list" revolver is a Smith & Wesson model 627 or 327, which might be worth looking at. They hold 8 rounds of .357 magnum, which is about as much firepower as you can pack into a defensive revolver. They make it with 5" and snub barrels, and also with steel or lightweight scandium frames. The heavier steel ones are all from their custom shop, so quality isn't a question. As far as I know, all of these guns are very expensive.

Personally, I think Ruger is the best buy right now. I have a Ruger SP101, and its fit and finish are better than my Smith model 642. Smiths used to be better than Rugers, but my impression is that they're overpriced without a real increase in quality. The best defensive Ruger revolver I can think of is their 4" GP100.

Charter Arms still makes their Bulldog, which is worth considering if you like little guns in a big caliber. Their Police Undercover models are also interesting, being that they hold 6 rounds of .38+p, which is one more than most other revolvers of similar size.

The only Taurus revolver I'd consider buying is their .44 magnum steel Tracker model with 4" barrel. It's the perfect packing gun for places like Alaska - heavy enough to shoot but not too heavy to carry.

The order I'd consider buying new is Ruger, Smith & Wesson, Charter Arms, then Taurus. Learn how to do a revolver checkout before you buy: http://thefiringline.com/Misc/library/Revolver-check.html

In my experience, Smiths usually have a smooth trigger out of the box, Rugers smooth out after a thousand rounds or so, and Charters or Taurus's could benefit from a visit to a gunsmith.

jmr40
September 5, 2011, 04:37 PM
Ruger or S&W would be my only 2 choices in a DA revolver in current production. Some good used Colts out there.

Leadhead
September 5, 2011, 04:43 PM
The Chiappa Rhino is a bit weird looking but I handled one recently and it felt real nice in the hand and I like the concept of the low bore and squared off cylinders....
http://mkschiappa.com/images/rhino_ergonomics_2.jpg
http://www.gunblast.com/images/SHOT2011/Day0/DSC02597.JPG

wad
September 5, 2011, 07:15 PM
Dan Wesson has announced their intent to get back into revolver manufacturing. They are displaying a new version of the. 357 magnum (model 15/715) on their web site, but so far nothing has materilized. The MSRP is too high IMHO.

Www.cz-usa.com/products/view/dw715/

zoom6zoom
September 5, 2011, 07:55 PM
Korth.
http://world.guns.ru/userfiles/images/handguns/germany/revolver/1287752429.jpg

230therapy
September 5, 2011, 07:57 PM
Ruger still makes the SP101, the GP100, the Redhawk and SuperRedhawk, and the cool "Alaskan" big-bore snubby, as well as the new LCR polymer-framed snubby. Rugers are different, but almost everyone agrees they make a heck of a solid gun that is accurate and will still be working perfectly when your great great grandkids are shooting them.

They also make their Blackhawk, Super-Blackhawk, Vaquero, Single-Six, and Bearcat lines of single-actions.

AND...they make the Blackhawk in 41 Magnum with two barrel lengths!!

PO2Hammer
September 5, 2011, 09:37 PM
Ruger quality seems to be improving, at least with the Blackhawks. Very impressed with my new Bisley .44 spl after being disappointed with two others in the past ten years or so.

bikemutt
September 5, 2011, 09:50 PM
I LOVE shooting my Taurus 608 large frame .357 mags. But also love to shoot my Smiths, Dan Wessons and Colts. Every shooter should own one or two of each I think.

MedWheeler
September 5, 2011, 11:30 PM
Sounds like everyone pretty much covered almost all of the available makers. If you're looking for a carry piece, there is one more, and that's the budget-priced newer entry into the market from Cobra, called the Shadow. I've handled a couple of them, and they seemed a far cry from the cheap autoloaders the company was originally built on. I think they are really hoping the Shadow becomes the "not-Cobra Cobra" in that respect.

Rexster
September 5, 2011, 11:42 PM
I would rate S&W and Ruger as the top makers of double-action revolvers. Both manage to turn out a few lemons, but both have excellent reputations for customer service.

People whose opinions I respect, say that Taurus can be a bit a bit hit-or-miss, usually good, but with enough problematic examples to be of concern. Taurus does not seem to have such a good reputation for handling its lemons so swiftly.

On the single-action side, Freedom Arms and USFA are superb. From what I hear, Colt has its act back together, though the SAA was quite bad for quite a while, which I had the misfortune of experiencing first-hand.

Scipio Africanus
September 6, 2011, 01:54 AM
Smith & Wesson and Ruger both make wonderful revolvers.

trikster
September 6, 2011, 03:00 AM
+1000 to what he said. My 64 is probably the best $239 I ever spent.Where did you see that deal?

bdb benzino
September 6, 2011, 03:12 AM
Smith and Taurus are a mixed bag. A total crap shoot.

Add an idiotic lock design on the Smith and Taurus is a better buy. Both are sketchy.


Where do you get this? I have read this same thing from you a few times. I don't like the locks either, but even with S&W's occasional issues, it is still far fewer than Taurus. I have had a couple good Taurus revolvers, but they are not as nice as any of my 6 S&W. Got any proof to back that statement up? FWIW I do respect almost everything else you post, so no hostility intended.

Fishman777
September 6, 2011, 06:47 AM
I prefer Smith and Wesson M&Ps for autoloaders and Rugers for revolvers.

Lawdawg45
September 6, 2011, 07:29 AM
Your choice of handguns should also involve quality, customer service and aftermarket accessories, and that would leave you with Ruger and S&W.;)

LD45

oldfool
September 6, 2011, 07:57 AM
posts #4 and #6 said it best, if you add in Rexster post #19

Used guns, do what everybody looking for quality does, look for old model S&Ws, Colts, Rugers and Dan Wessons; you will find a lot more S&Ws available than the others because they made so very many.

Korth, if you have to ask price, you cannot afford one, but they probably look good riding with you in car if you own a Ferarri

New Dan Wesson by CZ, nothing but promises so far; let somebody else fork up a grand to be the 1st kid on their block to see if they make 'em like they used to or not.

wlewisiii
September 6, 2011, 08:58 AM
Local gunshop. Only good deal I've ever seen at the place. :(

scramasax
September 6, 2011, 12:23 PM
It really depends on what type of shooting you want to do. I have both sa and da pistols. Smith/Colt/Ruger are the main ones. For a sa I would go with a Ruger, cast frames or not they are the best engineered of the sa pistols. For DA S&W has the easiest action to work on and the most models new and used to buy. For a reasonably priced top quality pistol the Colt Python is still the icon of Target wheelguns.

And now for somthing different...I just bought a con# pair of Chiappa Rhinos. Very fun to shoot especially with mrwc.

The choices of brand,caliber,size,finish,barrel length, and grips make this as hard as picking your favorite star. Good luck.

Cheers,

ts

warnerwh
September 6, 2011, 11:54 PM
I'd buy a nice used Dan Wesson for 350.00 to 400.00. These guns are underrated by the general shooting population. However they are strong like a Ruger and arguably the most accurate production double action revolvers ever made. As a previous poster mentioned there will be new ones made again but the retail is about 1,200 dollars.

Maple_City_Woodsman
September 7, 2011, 01:25 AM
Well, there is no bet in 'craps' that is safer than a 1 in 6 chance of winning, or 17%...

In the last 18 months I have purchased three new S&W revolvers. All three have been excellent in every physically possible way, which is 3 wins in 3.

S&W is in no way a craps shoot - unless your goal is to get a bad one, in which case your chances may be similar (or even lower) than betting on dice.

I don't know much about Taurus, because the only Taurus I've owned in the last 4 years broke on me almost immediate, and I have not purchased any others.

I don't know much about Charter either, because the crane design is just too pathetically thin for me to even have layed down my hard earned money on one, though I have been sorely tempted.

With all that said, Old S&W revolvers are also very good, and can be had much more cheaply. The same goes for older Colt revolvers.

For a NEW revolver, I wouldn't put my money anywhere but S&W, or perhaps Ruger if you want a beater to knock around and test the limits of your brass... On the used market, there are admittedly many more options for a quality revolver.

whalerman
September 7, 2011, 01:40 AM
Question. There has been repeated mention of Rugers being cast, not forged. Are the older Rugers, like the Security Six also cast? Are they any better built than the current editions of Ruger firearms?

DenaliPark
September 7, 2011, 02:29 AM
These are good, though their not as good as they used to be...

PabloJ
September 7, 2011, 02:54 AM
I looked over unused late 70s Charter Arms 'Bulldog' in .44. For $225 it would be hard to imagine how one could go wrong. It would be great defense gun with something approximating cowboy load ballistics or perhaps bit more.:cool: Knockdown power with spiced up cowboy load is proly between .38Spl and .45ACP which is good.

oldbear
September 7, 2011, 03:07 AM
Smith & Wesson and Ruger both make wonderful revolvers.

So true.
For a good all around revolver consider a Smith and Wesson 686 4" barrel, or if you can find one, get a used S&W 586, which is the blued carbon steel version of the 686.

Guillermo
September 7, 2011, 11:43 AM
BDB
No hostility detected. It's all good.

S&W's occasional issues

A quick Google search and you will see that S&W revolvers do not have "occasional" issues. The last 3 Smith brand new revolvers (all 686s) that I handled had glaring manufacturing defects.

Of course Smith used to produce great revolvers. I would say, and I am a Colt guy, 6 of the best 10. I do not relish in pointing out their issues. The inverse is true.
http://www.chuckhawks.com/smith-wesson_dark.htm

I don't even have to mention the idiotic lock design. Any kid that had the hook stay up when the screen door slams knows how dumb the design is.

Of course the 2 pc barrels that are crush fit and MIM parts are more cost cutting that also compromised quality.

Now if Smith sucks as bad as I say, why do we not hear about them like we do Taurus.

I opine that the reason is twofold.

1- Smith does a very good job of turning warranty work around thus irritating the customer less. My wife's 3 inch 686 had a barrel that was not fitted correctly. If memory serves it was gone for about 3 weeks including shipping both ways.

Taurus is VERY slow which gives their customers more time to be mad.

2- Pride- Most of us are loath to admit we made a bad purchase. And fanboys never will. The gun could fall apart like chalk in a rainstorm and some guys would proclaim how great it was.

While I am not in the market for a MIM revolver, if I was I would look at Taurus and Ruger.

Maple_City_Woodsman
September 7, 2011, 09:02 PM
Yes, its a conspiracy - MUCH more likely than you simply being wrong. :)

Fishslayer
September 7, 2011, 09:14 PM
Smith and Taurus are a mixed bag. A total crap shoot.

Add an idiotic lock design on the Smith and Taurus is a better buy. Both are sketchy.



http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/03/Trolling_drawing.jpg/300px-Trolling_drawing.jpg

Sam1911
September 7, 2011, 09:36 PM
Guess by now the OP has all the answers he needs (if he ever even came back).

Remember, everyone has opinions and some are hard-won. Hold a high standard of respect and civility and these threads will stay open longer.

Pull out your best smart-arse snark or post cutesy "trolling" images instead of intelligent commentary and they won't.

When they get closed, be sure to blame the Moderators. They're a bunch of jerks.

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