Does anyone make a J-frame .44 special?


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tdstout
September 16, 2011, 05:28 PM
I've always been interested in this rounds capabilities when being handloaded, and I think it would make it just that much better to be able to pocket carry the thing. Any help would be appreciated, and i'm sorry if this has been asked before. I used the search but couldn't really find anything.:banghead:

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W.E.G.
September 16, 2011, 05:37 PM
As in SMITH AND WESSON?

No.

PO2Hammer
September 16, 2011, 05:37 PM
Well, I would say probably because the cylinder diameter is just too small to drill big holes into.

rcmodel
September 16, 2011, 05:43 PM
+1

.380" size holes for .38/.357 is pushing it as far as you can push it in a J-Frame size cylinder.

.457" holes for .44 cartridges would leave daylight showing through the sides of the chambers.

rc

Old Fuff
September 16, 2011, 05:49 PM
However all is not lost. Taurus and Charter Arms offer 5-shot/.44 Special snubbies that are based on a frame that's slightly larger then Smith's K-frame in some respects, and smaller in others. Take a look at them.

Tony_the_tiger
September 16, 2011, 05:49 PM
The closest thing is the S&W 296 centennial airlite revolver in .44 special. It's a 5 shot snub on the L-frame, so quite a big bigger than the J frame, but unconventionally smaller than most other L-frame offerings and very light with a scandium frame and titanium cylinder. Mine fits in cargo style pockets (cargo shorts, pants, some jeans) and disappears on a belt. Due to it's lightweight, bullets are limited to 200 grains (to prevent the round backing out of the cartridge under intense recoil and disabling the cylinder). I have not seen any evidence of this in factory 200 grain rounds (the Corbon DPX factory loads seem very promising for defense, but have vicious recoil. They are seated firmly in brass casing).

Next to a J-frame 442

http://i978.photobucket.com/albums/ae269/kiwirat33/IMG-20110909-00062.jpg

In a Mika's pocket holster

http://i978.photobucket.com/albums/ae269/kiwirat33/DSC02666-1.jpg

The frame is comparable to the Gp100 but the barrel, grip, and topstrap are smaller. Even at this size I tend to pocket carry it. Notice there is no adjustable rear sight or hammer to snag on. The large hammer is internal much like other S&W centennial models.

http://i978.photobucket.com/albums/ae269/kiwirat33/IMG-20110916-00086.jpg

I have also been known to holster it with jeans and a polo with great success (lobo gunleather makes my favorite IWB holster).

http://i978.photobucket.com/albums/ae269/kiwirat33/DSC02676-1.jpg

Another 5-shot .44 special snub is the charter arms bulldog. I have no experience with the model and it has mixed reviews and a somewhat macabre history. Perhaps other forum members can help you on that one (Old Fuff mentioned it earlier in the thread).

Best,

-T

CraigC
September 16, 2011, 09:36 PM
Not possible, at all, in any custom format. Just not enough real estate. The five-shot L-frame is pushing it and is good enough for the Skeeter load. The Charter Arms is as small as you can get but must be run at standard pressures.

There were some custom K-frames years ago but they must also be kept to standard pressures.

Tony_the_tiger
September 16, 2011, 10:27 PM
The S&W 696 on the L-frame could shoot the skeeter load @ 250 grains. However, the 296 I posted about is limited to 200 grains so a poor candidate for the classic load.

Such a trade-off is a compromise for weight and concealability. In the broadest sense, all pistol sized handgunning firearms are a tradeoff for size as well.

Deltaboy
September 16, 2011, 10:36 PM
Charter Arm Bull Dog Pug is the only one that is almost J frame size.

Nasty Ned
September 16, 2011, 11:00 PM
I have owned several Charter Arms 44's from the first ones to the most recent ones and loved them all. The most recent ones are slightly more user friendly than the older ones.

I'd still have one if I wasn't so easily snookered by my friends who are to lazy to go look for one of thier own, since they all know I'm easy.

Ned

Gordon
September 16, 2011, 11:18 PM
S&W COULD make a 4 shot .44 on the J frame by using the old Colt cloverleaf system. My 296 has all the recoil I can handle and maybe a might too much. +1 on that Corbon load for bear country in lower 48. I have put waist clips on my 296 and it's 7 shot understudy 242 as the kydex holsters for it are a little bulky for true CCW and they are convient with no belt as in sweat pants where they dissappear. I'd Buy a 4 shot j frame .44 tho....:evil:
http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i203/gordonhulme/P1010500.jpg

ArchAngelCD
September 16, 2011, 11:41 PM
As said above, Charter Arms makes a J frame size .44 Special, it's called the Bulldog (http://www.charterfirearms.com/products/Charter_Bulldog_74420.html).

mnrivrat
September 16, 2011, 11:47 PM
Rossi Model 720 is about K-frame size and one of the smallest of the 44's.

Owen Sparks
September 17, 2011, 12:41 AM
The J Frame is a Smith & Wesson nominclature. Other manufacturers may have something of similar size but to my knowledge only S&W uses the letters J, K, L, M & X to denote frame sizes.

Tony_the_tiger
September 17, 2011, 12:59 AM
Nice pair of L-frame Centennials, Gordon. The 296 and the elusive 242 go together like pancakes and maple syrup :)

Tony_the_tiger
September 17, 2011, 02:21 AM
Kind of neat, someone is selling a 296 on gunbroker with a steel cylinder. I'd guess they found a 696 cylinder and installed it on the 296. Correct me if I'm wrong but such a hybrid may be able to handle heavier loads, although I have not weighed one and only have experience with the titanium cylinder.Big emphasis on -may-. I wonder where the titanium cylinder and factory supplied trigger lock went... and I'd be careful buying someones "project" especially since the seller does not seem to know much about it, but it does look shiny. It's definitely been more than 'test fired' as evidenced by case wear marks near te firing pin.

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=251017795

Strykervet
September 17, 2011, 02:34 AM
You can look at the Night Guards too. There is a snub .44Spcl. and mag. The mag is obviously large frame, the other medium. Light weight too.

I have a 340PD, and it is light, but man, it has the most recoil of anything I've ever fired with stiff loads.

SaxonPig
September 17, 2011, 07:58 AM
When I was young I saw a Chevy Corvair with an old 392 Chrysler Hemi stuffed in the back seat area connected to the transaxle. That was at least possible if not feasible. The 44 caliber cartridge is too big for the J Frame size gun.

madcratebuilder
September 17, 2011, 08:09 AM
About as close to a .44 J frame would be the Charter Arms Bulldog.

S&W M640 in .357 and a .44spl Bulldog. I find the Bulldog much more pleasant to shoot.
http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d37/madcratebuilder/bd01.jpg

CraigC
September 17, 2011, 12:36 PM
S&W COULD make a 4 shot .44 on the J frame by using the old Colt cloverleaf system.
Explain this magic.


Correct me if I'm wrong but such a hybrid may be able to handle heavier loads...
No. The cylinder is not really the limiting factor, it's the paper thin forcing cone. IMHO, the 200gr warning from S&W is not written in stone. As long as you give a good crimp, heavier bullets are fine.

Wolfeye
September 17, 2011, 09:07 PM
As others have mentioned, there's Charter Arms' Bulldog. ("J-frame" is the name Smith & Wesson uses for their current small-framed revolvers.) If S&W is what you're familiar with, the Bulldog frame is between the sizes of a J and K frame. It's sort of like a J-frame with a fatter cylinder.

There's also the Taurus Tracker in .44 magnum. It's no pocket gun, but it's only about 2 lbs and holds 5 shots instead of 6, making it pretty small. You'd be able to shoot a wider variety of .44 spl handloads out of it than the Bulldog, which is limited to standard pressure loads.

Hope this helps!

Gordon
September 17, 2011, 10:32 PM
.41 Colt Cloverleaf
http://antiquearmsinc.com/images/colt-cloverleaf-revolver/colt-cloverleaf-revolver.jpg
http://www.yankeegunnuts.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/CloverleafCylinder.jpg

the older original Charter arms Bulldogs were pretty small, like a Colt D frame with a 3" barrel. Newer ones are a touch larger. The S&W Scandium guns are pretty cool if you get lucky and get a good one. Mine are pre lock.

DM~
September 17, 2011, 10:34 PM
There were some custom K-frames years ago but they must also be kept to standard pressures.

Now true at all... What the maker of the guns said was, "do not exceed 1,000 fps loads with 250 grain cast bullets".

DM

CraigC
September 18, 2011, 12:20 AM
Now true at all... What the maker of the guns said was, "do not exceed 1,000 fps loads with 250 grain cast bullets".
True according to those I trust. Do you have any idea how thin those chamber walls are???

DM~
September 18, 2011, 08:40 AM
I'm not sure who you trust, but my info came from the "maker of the guns", (directly to me on the phone) who would you know that knows more about "K" frame 44 spl's, than the designer and builder himself????

DM

Old Fuff
September 18, 2011, 11:32 AM
I was once a party in a group which included a well known gun magazine writer (who is also a member of THR) and a Smith & Wesson engineer. The discussion turned to why S&W didn't make a 5-shot/.44 Special on the K-frame. The engineer opined that it couldn't be done. The writer pointed out that some custom gunsmiths were already doing it. The engineer, obviously suprised, pulled out a pocket calculator and started crunching numbers. After a bit of time passed while he pushed keys, he shook his head "no," meaning "yes they could, but no they wouldn't."

Smith & Wesson never marketed a K-frame .44 Special, but they did make some on they're slightly larger L-frame.

Taurus made a 5-shot/.44 Special on their mid-frame (the model 445) one of which I have, but it won't fit into a S&W K-frame holster, which is way too tight. Clearly the Taurus is midway between S&W's K and L frames.

Somewhere in all of this is a message. I would say the likelyhood of Smith & Wesson making a J-frame in .44 Special is somewhere between zip and zero.

CraigC
September 18, 2011, 11:37 AM
In this case, I really don't care what the maker said (the one from Spokane?). These guns are long defunct and knowing how thin the chamber walls and forcing cone is on the larger L-frame 696, I certainly would NOT push those custom K-frames beyond SAAMI pressures.

tdstout
September 18, 2011, 12:55 PM
Alright, I know that "J Frame" is S&W, what I should have said was small frame instead. Sorry for the confusion. But what it sounds like though is that there aren't any small enough to fit in a pocket and yet strong enough to handle anything bigger than the light loads. What about .45 acp? I know that they make a few revolvers chambered for this round, and I already have a 1911 chambered for that round. Are there any of those that are small, and how do they compare to .44 special?

rcmodel
September 18, 2011, 01:01 PM
.45 ACP is bigger around then .44 Spl, so no, there are no truly small revolvers in .45 ACP either.
For the same reason.

The most powerful small pocket revolver you will find is chambered in .357 Magnum.

rc

CraigC
September 18, 2011, 01:41 PM
The .45ACP is not only larger but also operates at higher pressures. A step in the wrong direction. The wildcat .41Spl would be a step in the right direction but it still won't fit in a J-frame.

DM~
September 18, 2011, 02:23 PM
In this case, I really don't care what the maker said (the one from Spokane?). These guns are long defunct and knowing how thin the chamber walls and forcing cone is on the larger L-frame 696, I certainly would NOT push those custom K-frames beyond SAAMI pressures.

In this case, i'll go with what the "designer" of the conversion told me, as NO ONE KNOWS more about them than he does. I also know that he fired a pile of rounds to come to that conclusion.

I also know that he sent one to S&W and they fired it MANY thousands of rounds before returning it, and none of them blew up, broke or failed in any way...

Lastly, i have fired mine for years with my own cast 250 grain lead bullet at 900fps without any problem at all, i see no reason to stop now despite what someone who has never even seen one in person thinks he knows.

DM

CraigC
September 18, 2011, 04:26 PM
Lastly, i have fired mine for years with my own cast 250 grain lead bullet at 900fps without any problem at all...
THAT'S STANDARD PRESSURE!!!!!!!!

What have I been saying all along??? I've been saying they should probably be kept to standard pressures. You can drive a 250gr Keith bullet at 900fps at standard pressures all day long and twice on Sunday.


I also know that he sent one to S&W and they fired it MANY thousands of rounds before returning it, and none of them blew up, broke or failed in any way...

Lastly, i have fired mine for years with my own cast 250 grain lead bullet at 900fps without any problem at all...
Where did I say they were unsafe??? Where did I say they were unsafe at 900fps???


...someone who has never even seen one in person thinks he knows.
What I think I know is that the 696 should be kept to 1000fps or so. Paco Kelly is the only authority on the subject who pushes his luck with these guns but far as I know, he does so sparingly. The weak point, as we know from guns that have been damaged, is the thin forcing cone. So what I 'think' I know is that the barrel shank and thus the forcing cone, is larger on an L-frame than it is on a K-frame. What I also 'think' I know is that the cylinder is also larger in diameter on an L-frame than a K-frame. These are two good things to 'think' you know because they happen to be true.

You have no friggin' clue what I know or what I've seen. I'd appreciate you kept your personal comments to yourself and not presume to know anything about the individual on the other end. Clearly, you do not. The truth is you thought you were gonna show everybody how smart you are and created an argument to that end. Sorry if I wasn't impressed, those guns aren't "that" obscure. :rolleyes:

jimniowa
September 18, 2011, 07:00 PM
I carry taurus .44sp 2" hammerless s/s 5 shot revolver. I would not recommend Taurus to my friends because of other issues, this gun will work. I load it with 210g sthp ammo. My wife carries a .32 H&R mag 2" in Taurus and is very happy with it. Her favorite is a S&W 686.
Jim

PabloJ
September 18, 2011, 07:20 PM
I looked over Charter Arms 'Bulldog' .44 Special with 4" barrel and adjustable rear sight. It was very light. Is it safe to shoot?

DM~
September 18, 2011, 09:32 PM
THAT'S STANDARD PRESSURE!!!!!!!!

What have I been saying all along??? I've been saying they should probably be kept to standard pressures. You can drive a 250gr Keith bullet at 900fps at standard pressures all day long and twice on Sunday.



Where did I say they were unsafe??? Where did I say they were unsafe at 900fps???



What I think I know is that the 696 should be kept to 1000fps or so. Paco Kelly is the only authority on the subject who pushes his luck with these guns but far as I know, he does so sparingly. The weak point, as we know from guns that have been damaged, is the thin forcing cone. So what I 'think' I know is that the barrel shank and thus the forcing cone, is larger on an L-frame than it is on a K-frame. What I also 'think' I know is that the cylinder is also larger in diameter on an L-frame than a K-frame. These are two good things to 'think' you know because they happen to be true.

You have no friggin' clue what I know or what I've seen. I'd appreciate you kept your personal comments to yourself and not presume to know anything about the individual on the other end. Clearly, you do not. The truth is you thought you were gonna show everybody how smart you are and created an argument to that end. Sorry if I wasn't impressed, those guns aren't "that" obscure. :rolleyes:

I never claimed to be smarter than the maker of the revolver in question, but you sure claim to be... I trust his opinion much more than someone who has never even seen one. Also my personal experience trumps internet arm chair experts every time...

I could push my 44spl. a bit more, but why should i? That's why they invented the 44mag., and i have several of those too...

You should buy some of the guns you talk about and shoot the heck out of them, they are great fun to own and shoot, and you never know, along the way, you just might learn a few things about them. That's what i did, and it works for me...

DM

DM~
September 18, 2011, 09:36 PM
I looked over Charter Arms 'Bulldog' .44 Special with 4" barrel and adjustable rear sight. It was very light. Is it safe to shoot?

PabloJ, Over the years i've owned 3 or 4 of them... All of them were safe to shoot and they shot "ok", but i thought the actions were a bit rough and the fit and finish could have been better, so down the road they went...

DM

CraigC
September 19, 2011, 09:05 AM
I guess I'm a little confused. I say that they must be kept to standard pressures. You say I'm wrong, you've shot yours at 900fps for years without issue. 900fps is standard pressure. Where's the argument???

Your attack on my character and credibility is an interesting deflection.
Also my personal experience trumps internet arm chair experts every time...
Your personal experience doing exactly what I said???

You should buy some of the guns you talk about and shoot the heck out of them...
Ya think??? :confused:

Guillermo
September 19, 2011, 09:16 AM
You should buy some of the guns you talk about and shoot the heck out of them

Hey Craig...what is your average round count per month?

Tallinar
September 19, 2011, 09:30 AM
Not sure why this is becoming so hostile.

I don't have my manuals in front of me at the moment, but I am pretty darn sure that published data will agree with Craig that a 250gr cast bullet at 900fps can be achieved under SAAMI spec (15,500 PSI) in .44 special using a variety of different powders, thus meaning that it's not considered a +P load. I'll check my manuals when I get home.

Let's be sure we're not confusing a "stout" load with a "high-pressure" load. :)

CraigC
September 19, 2011, 11:12 AM
Hey Craig...what is your average round count per month?
Usually at least a couple thousand, including rimfire. Three years ago I had to get a Dillon 650 to feed my .44Mag habit. This year I've been doing more .38Spl and .45ACP, trying to wear out two new guns. Ended up with a conversion kit to load .38's on the 650 as well.

The .38Spl is a USFA Rodeo II:
http://photos.imageevent.com/newfrontier45/sixgunsiii/large/IMG_8062b.jpg

The .45 is a Springfield Range Officer, with new grips and some Ed Brown goodies:
http://photos.imageevent.com/newfrontier45/sixgunsiii/large/IMG_8036b.jpg


Hunting season is almost here so I'll be unlimbering the Uberti 1873 Deluxe Sporting Rifle .38-40 again. Need to install a new front sight and rezero it. Have three different bullets to try, to see what this cartridge does on small whitetail. Here it is before I installed the Marbles tang sight. Along with a Cimarron 1860 Richards Type II cartridge conversion .44Colt.
http://photos.imageevent.com/newfrontier45/sixgunsiii/large/IMG_7033b.jpg


I've also got another Old Model Ruger .357 that I want to have converted to a 7" .38-40 to go with my 1873. Hopefully I'll be able to send it off in the next few months.

But no, I don't have any guns or do any shooting. ;)


Not sure why this is becoming so hostile.
Nor I. :confused:

DM~
September 19, 2011, 12:05 PM
Not sure why this is becoming so hostile.

I don't have my manuals in front of me at the moment, but I am pretty darn sure that published data will agree with Craig that a 250gr cast bullet at 900fps can be achieved under SAAMI spec (15,500 PSI) in .44 special using a variety of different powders, thus meaning that it's not considered a +P load. I'll check my manuals when I get home.

Let's be sure we're not confusing a "stout" load with a "high-pressure" load. :)

My Answer isn't about 900fps being +P or not, it's about whether the master pistol smith who designed the "K" frame 44spl's was right that his conversions were safe with 250/1000fps loads. Our mutual friend seems to think HE is more knowledgable than the designer/builder, i think not! The builder tested these conversions, i have shot some 1000 to 1050 fps loads, but settled on 900 because i like that load...

The least one could do to decide, is AT LEAST have some personal experience with the firearm....in this case, the "arm chair" comment fits perfectly!

DM

CraigC
September 19, 2011, 01:00 PM
I don't have to lick a turd to know that I do not want to eat it. Nor do I have to blowup a K-frame .44Spl to know what NOT to do. God gave me a brain and the ability to use it. Fortunately in this case, I've spent much time applying it to this very subject.

I stand behind what I said. Regardless of what the `smith said, I would NOT exceed standard pressures in such a gun, nor would I recommend anyone else did so. Period. If you feel differently, that is certainly your prerogative. The K-frame cylinder is 0.120" smaller than the L-frame 696. That's almost 1/8"! In this context, that is a huge difference. The outer chamber wall on the 696 is a mere 0.050" thick. Do the math. Not to mention that the barrel shank is smaller in diameter, by 0.022". The 696's forcing cone is already paper thin at 0.058", whereas the unmodified model 19's is 0.060" at the 6:00 position cutout. Those two changes are the L-frame's whole reason for being, just to contain the .357 cartridge.

Further, NO authority on this subject will recommend exceeding standard pressures in the 696, let alone the dainty K-frame. So this "armchair" shooter has plenty to support his position. You, on the other hand, have the third-hand word of a long retired gunsmith. Who produced a very obscure custom gun that was at the absolute end of its design limits, that is completely irreplaceable today because no contemporary gunsmith would touch such a job. Why? Because there is very little safety margin.

Your personal comments questioning my character and credibility have not been warranted or appreciated. Nor have they contributed at all to the discussion at hand. Stuff your "armchair" comments. I'm not an easily impressed or bullied child or a mall ninja and will respond in kind.


...his conversions were safe with 250/1000fps loads.
More than a little vague. :rolleyes:

EMC45
September 19, 2011, 01:02 PM
That frame must be bigger than the 431 that Taurus put out, because my 431 (4 inch SS Fixed sight 5 shot .44 Special) fits both my K frame holsters wonderfully.

CraigC
September 19, 2011, 01:15 PM
What's the cylinder diameter on the Taurus?

Guillermo
September 19, 2011, 01:17 PM
NO authority on this subject will recommend exceeding standard pressures in the 696, let alone the dainty K-frame

That is absolutely the truth.

If the gunsmith in question actually did so, I would not trust him.

Also, I have chatted w Craig on THR for quite some time. We may disagree but his positions are always well thought out. The only ones he is wrong about are the ones that he disagrees with me. :D

DM~
September 19, 2011, 02:20 PM
You, on the other hand, have the third-hand word of a long retired gunsmith. Who produced a very obscure custom gun that was at the absolute end of its design limits, that is completely irreplaceable today because no contemporary gunsmith would touch such a job. Why? Because there is very little safety margin.


Dang! I sure wish i had your crystal ball, you even know all about the pistol smith, even though i never stated who did this particular conversion, even calling "first hand" info, third hand. lol

I sure can't compete with your crystal ball, so i'll just leave you to it and "google" to keep typeing away...

You have a great day,

DM

Tallinar
September 19, 2011, 02:27 PM
...his conversions were safe with 250/1000fps loads.
More than a little vague..

Very vague.

There are multiple ways to arrive at a given velocity with a given bullet weight. The actual pressure specs can vary radically with different powders due to varying burn rates, etc.

I'm a bit hesitant to take anyone's word on safety if they referenced only a bullet weight and velocity as being safe - especially when referring to loads that are on the hotter side of the spectrum for a given cartridge, and even moreso when referring to a gun with such questionable (or abnormally skinny, at very least) dimensions.

If you were able to fire such rounds safely in that gun, then that's sweet. I'm glad nothing has gone wrong for you.

Maybe I missed it earlier in the conversation, but can we get any pics of this .44 special K-frame? I'm very curious.

CraigC
September 19, 2011, 03:15 PM
The only ones he is wrong about are the ones that he disagrees with me.
I try not to do that too often! ;)


Very vague.
Much like the rest of it.

Guillermo
September 19, 2011, 03:51 PM
I try not to do that too often!

You are a smart guy...

:evil:

And CERTAINLY smart enough not to push beyond the design capability of a lightweight weapon.

Apparently some folks aren't.

(or more likely, they were misunderstood)

azgunner
September 20, 2011, 09:29 AM
I own a Rossi 720C. It is a K frame gun, with a J frame grip. It is great for carry. Fits in a K frame holster. Very concealable. My Taurus 431 is a great carry weapon also. But it is not as easy to hide as the Rossi. You cant go wrong with either weapon. Both are wonderful shooters. The Rossi 720 is the best weapon Rossi has ever put out. I also believe the Taurus 431 is the best revolver Taurus ever put out. A close second would be the 669 in 357 magnum. Load your own for practice, and factory for defense.

tipoc
September 20, 2011, 12:53 PM
DM,

Do you have any pics of the K frame conversion to 44 Spl.? They would be interesting to look at. Also can you measure the thickness of the cylinder walls?

Thank you.

tipoc

whalerman
September 21, 2011, 09:09 AM
CraigC NICE PHOTOS!

CraigC
September 21, 2011, 10:43 AM
Thank you!

Dave T
September 22, 2011, 01:13 AM
When S&W first came out with the 696 I was disappointed that it wasn't a K-frame. I actually called the factory and got someone on the phone. My question was, if CH could build a 44 Special Bulldog on the equivalent of a D-frame Colt (Dick Special) why can S&W build one on the K-frame. He said it could not be done and maintain the safety margin S&W insisted on. He specifically mentioned the thin spot on the bottom of the barrel shank as a problem area when cut to 44 (.43") caliber.

Dave

Gordon
October 14, 2011, 08:51 PM
Well maybe because of this thread when I came across an estate sale the HS Sentinel snub and the Charter Arms .44 Bulldog early version ( 1981 I think as it is serial 207... and has a very nice polish and a pocket hammer) for $500 the brace as NIB I took it! I have to wait 10 days until I can show and tell BUT I can tell you this: The sleek old school Bulldog is about the same physical size as the High Standard Sentinel Snub .22. Both dropped into the front pocket of my 501s with no grip visable from any angle. I think the barrels are 3" on both guns. The weight was very little more than the Sentinel . Both guns are egual in print to a pre shrouded barrel 3" Detective Special and weigh right at 19oz empty which is about a 1/4 pound lighter than a Dick Special :eek: so when one of those .44 boolits back off from the gun...owchee mama :what:
I am ordering a set of Crimson Trace grips for the Charter Bulldog, found them for $200, should help with the recoil and the intimidation factor!:neener:

Tony_the_tiger
October 15, 2011, 01:06 AM
Sweet :)

Gordon, when you get it, could you please post a photo of it next to your 296?

WC145
October 15, 2011, 11:28 AM
I had a Bulldog a few years ago that I had some work done on and then foolishly traded away. I know who has it now but he won't sell it back to me, I'm going to stop bugging him though, because now he doesn't have to. I just picked up about the coolest Charter Arms Bulldog ever - a Mag-Na-Port custom "Backpacker". From what I can find they made 200 of them in the mid to late '70s. They took a blued Bulldog, cut the barrel down to 1 7/8" barrel and ported it, shaved the front sight (it's a belly gun, don't know why they called in a Backpacker), bobbed the hammer, did an action job, and finished the frame, cyl, and barrel in hard chrome and the grip frame and ejector rod in gloss black. They used Pachmayr grips and included an embossed gun rug.

Mine is in exellent shape, near new, and has a terrific trigger pull, short, light, and smooth. I just picked it up yesterday and have only had time to shoot some Hornady 165gr Critical Defense through it but it functions perfectly and it is plenty accurate at point shooting distances (remember, no front sight). Impressive muzzle blast thanks to the ports but they make it easy to control, recoil is very manageable. If you're looking for a compact .44spl done right, keep an eye out for one of these and don't hesitate to buy it if you find one.

I haven't had a chance to take any pics of my own, these are from the gunbroker ad and the angles are kind of odd, grip is not so big in real life -

http://pics.gunbroker.com/GB/253560000/253560043/pix018823314.jpg
http://pics.gunbroker.com/GB/253560000/253560043/pix018823314.jpg
http://pics.gunbroker.com/GB/253560000/253560043/pix147572925.jpg

Gordon
October 15, 2011, 11:39 AM
Oh that is a sweet Magna Port custom! I really would like one , maybe Larry Kelly would do mine but put a modern Hi Viz front site on it. I figure with his honing of the guts and Metal Life hardening of the surfaces the thing is gonna hold up well. Thanks for sharing it is really nice. BTW Crimson Trace makes laser grips for these, might be cool with no sights to have them. I found a set for $203 on Amazon.
So THERE you have it folks a (almost) J frame .44 !

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