general purpose wheelgun...


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proven
October 13, 2011, 08:43 PM
howdy all. i've got an itch for a nice revolver for general use. mostly to be carried while hiking, camping, and for fun at the range. hunting is a possibility, although slim.

i really like the ruger single actions. super blackhawk, vaquero. i also like the redhawk. i think i have it narrowed down to .44 mag, and .45 colt. i don't reload, as of now, and figure the .44 might be the better choice, but something about the .45 seems to be calling me.

i'm also still undecided as to single action or double. i like the looks of single, but is the double a better choice for protection against game and two legged vermin while hiking/camping?

i'd like either the 4 5/8 or 5.5" bbl. mostly for ease of carry, and a bit for aesthetics.

i've read really good things about the bisley style grip frame being nicer for hot rounds, but have no experience with them. heck i just got my first revo (a single six) last year, and have only ever shot a 629 with the 8 3/8 bbl when younger.

any advice/opinions are welcome. sa/da? bbl length? grip style? .44mag/.45colt? what do you enjoy and why? what would you recommend for my stated parameters of use?

cheers

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c1ogden
October 13, 2011, 08:51 PM
The Vaquero is a nice gun but the Blackhawk has adjustable sights - a big plus for us old guys. The only other suggestion I can make is that you consider a .357/38 instead of the others - 3x the shooting for the same ammo budget.

My favorite gun for your purposes is my S&W Model 19 (.357) with a 4 inch barrel.

336A
October 13, 2011, 09:14 PM
Here is my pick.

http://www.realguns.com/articles/302.htm

http://www.realguns.com/articles/310.htm

http://www.realguns.com/articles/305.htm

BCRider
October 13, 2011, 09:56 PM
If you're not a reloader then the cost of ammo for either .44Mag or .45Colt is going to get "old" real fast. A far better general trail and range gun would be chambered in .357Mag/.38Spl. With Mag rounds you've got enough energy for almost anything you'll find in the woods that is intent on eating you and with .38's the ammo cost will drop WAY down compared to .357's or either of the other bigger calibers you mentioned.

If you're after a SA revolver then by far the nicest all around gun would be the Ruger Blackhawk. The adjustable sights will allow you to adjust to various load powers and bullet weights.

Or if you could "stand for" a DA revolver then a S&W Model 19, 66 or 686 would suit the job well. The 19 and 66 are K frame guns so they'd be slightly lighter for trail carry than the 686. But the 686 is newer if that matters. A 6 inch barrel is nice for range duty or open carry in a suitable holster. A 4 inch barrel would give you more options for concealed carry if that is your eventual goal. But since you're looking at SA revolvers which just don't conceal all that well I gather this isn't a high priority.

armoredman
October 13, 2011, 10:06 PM
Smith 19 or 66, perfect 357 magnums. Heck I'd feel just fine with my Smith Model 10 and some good homebrewed handloads. :D But seriously, if I had my pick of wheelguns for carry in this area of the woods, it would probably be a Model 65. ;)

MCgunner
October 13, 2011, 10:09 PM
Something in .45 Colt like this. :D

http://i50.tinypic.com/2j4sqxx.jpg

Doubles for bar-b-ques

Super Sneaky Steve
October 13, 2011, 10:17 PM
I think every man needs both a single and a double action revolver.

Get a GP100 in .357 and a Blackhawk convertable in .45 Colt and .45 Auto. That way you can practice with both for cheap and carry hot stuff for protection in the woods.

Missionary
October 13, 2011, 10:21 PM
Greetings
Get a 4" Dan Wesson (Monson) to start with. By far the most accurate production revolver that was made. Then as time goes along get a 2", & 6" barrel and the barrel wrench. Now you can have 3 revolver barrel lengths to choose from. If you really want a super hunting revolver get the 8" barrel. For shooting 180 grainers EWK makes a nice 1-12 twist barrel. All theses barrel / shroud units interchange in about 2 minutes.
DWs are as strong as they come and will still be shooting anything you feed them long after other revolvers are back at the manufacturer getting fixed. Bought my first in 1978, shot silly wets with it and still have it.
Mike in Peru

MCgunner
October 13, 2011, 10:26 PM
Get a GP100 in .357 and a Blackhawk convertable in .45 Colt and .45 Auto. That way you can practice with both for cheap and carry hot stuff for protection in the woods.

Save your money on the convertible and get a reloading press, mold, and a lead pot. :D

mdauben
October 13, 2011, 10:27 PM
Smith 19 or 66, perfect 357 magnums.
Much as I love the 66, I don't think I could call it the "perfect 357". There is a reason, after all that S&W stopped making K-Frame 357s.

The inherent weakness of the design means that is you fire much "hot" 357 ammo through it (particularly hot 125gr loads) you risk cracking the forcing cone. Since it's been so long since these guns were produced replacement parts are no longer available. So, if you crack your forcing cone your 66 become an expesive piece is scrap metal.

Of course if you keep this limitation in mind they are otherwise great carry guns with excellent actions. :)

Legionnaire
October 14, 2011, 09:16 AM
For a "general purpose" revolver, I don't think you can beat the 4-inch GP100 .357. As others have pointed out, cost of ammo for the .44s will eat you up unless you are a reloader. Were I in your position, I'd buy a GP100 and an inexpensive reloading setup -- you can outfit a Lee turret press for well under the cost of another revolver.

If you must have a .44 or .45, I like the 5.5-inch Redhawk (DA) or Super Blackhawk (SA). Both are great guns, so the question is whether you want a double or single action. For hunting, plinking, and general field carry, the BH would be fine. If you're thinking seriously about self defense against critters of any sort, I'd opt for the RH. And the reloading setup.

Taurus 617 CCW
October 14, 2011, 10:03 AM
I picked myself up a S&W 66 with a 4" barrel for my general woods revolver. It's hard to beat the cost of .357 vs. .44 or .45 lc. I am a former owner of a model 29 and it was a great gun but I found myself not carrying it as much due to the size and weight.

MachIVshooter
October 14, 2011, 10:14 AM
I'll parrot the advice of others to consider a .357 instead. .44 mag and .45 colt are twice as expensive to shoot if you don't reload, and the guns are heavy enough to be annoying for carry (unless you get an airweight, which makes .44 mag rather unpleasant to shoot).

For your purposes, I think a 4" medium frame .357 is just the ticket. For me, it'd be a S&W 686, but there's nothing wrong with a Colt or Ruger.

Tallinar
October 14, 2011, 10:24 AM
i don't reload, as of now, and figure the .44 might be the better choice...

If you don't reload, as others have said, you may want to consider .357 right off the bat. Alternative, you should really start handloading now. The earlier you get started in it, the better!

but something about the .45 seems to be calling me.

I've found its best to get what calls to you, as opposed to settling for something. You'll only end up getting what you want eventually. But again, if you go the .45 Colt route, get into reloading.

i'm also still undecided as to single action or double. i like the looks of single, but is the double a better choice for protection against game...

Against animals, a single action would be just fine.

...and two legged vermin...

In a self defense situation, a double action revolver has the advantage in that you can simply pull the trigger and the gun will go bang. You don't need to thumb the hammer. Additionally, if you find yourself in a situation where you're forced to reload, a double action swing-out cylinder or break action design can be reloaded more quickly than a traditional single action loading gate design. While it's completely common to hear of folks carrying SA revolvers for self defense (like myself, for example), one needs to be keenly aware of the fact that SA revolvers require more manipulation to work the gun, thus making practice all the more important.

i'd like either the 4 5/8 or 5.5" bbl. mostly for ease of carry, and a bit for aesthetics

For ease of carry, the shorter the better. No argument there. I carry a Ruger New Vaquero in .44 special with a 3.75" barrel. As for aesthetics, that's completely subjective. While I love my 3.75" barrel for every day carry, I also have a soft spot in my heart for my .45 Colt New Vaq with 7.5" barrel.

grip style? .44mag/.45colt? what do you enjoy and why? what would you recommend for my stated parameters of use?

As far as grip style, that will be completely up to you. Before you decide, see if you can get your hands on several different grip-framed guns and see what feels comfortable.

As for which cartridge for your stated application - either will work. But how much power do you really need? If you plan to seriously hunt with it or you're worried about bears, then either .44 magnum or a Blackhawk in .45 Colt would be the way to go (If you want to load the .45 Colt to .44 magnum power levels, you will be limited to the Blackhawk or old model Vaquero - or if you want to go the double action route - a Redhawk in .45 Colt. The New Vaquero is designed to more closely emulate the frame/cylinder dimensions of the original SAA, so you'd be wise to stay within SAAMI spec pressures, or only slightly above).

Personally, I don't handgun hunt, nor have any intentions to. For me, .44 special and .45 Colt properly loaded (even within SAAMI spec pressures) will do everything I want a handgun to do.

youngda9
October 14, 2011, 11:59 AM
You need to go fondle and shoot all of the guns that you are interested in. Relying on looks alone and others opinions on what is best for "you" isn't going to satisfy you. Go to all the local gun stores and go to your local gun forum to see who has what you'd like to shoot...I'm sure if you ask they'll let you give it a try.

MrBorland
October 14, 2011, 02:18 PM
general purpose wheelgun...

...would be a 3" k-frame .357mag, IMO. A used Model 65 or a Model 13. If you can find one, a 3" M66 or M19 (the adjustable sighted version of the M65 or M13, respectively) would be great, but they're very rare, and priced accordingly.

Next up, but easier to find, would be a 4" k-frame .357mag. A friend of mine cut his 4" M66 to 3", and installed a Weigand interchangeable sight base (http://www.jackweigand.com/interfs.html). In the end, a lot cheaper than a bona fide 3" M66, and the interchangeable front sight made it even more versatile. A very nice gun, indeed!

Dogguy
October 14, 2011, 02:21 PM
Smith 686, Ruger GP-100. Four inch barrels.

roaddog28
October 14, 2011, 02:45 PM
It sounds like you like single action revolvers. For the intended purpose your indicating a single action would work well. Since you don't reload I would not suggest a 44 mag or 45 LC. So, this means a option would be the 357 magnum. Like others have said, the 357 magnum gives you the option of 38 special for practice which is cheaper. Then for camping and outdoors then you can load your revolver with 357 magnum round. Believe me the 357 magnum will get the job done. I have a option you might consider. I own a Ruger Blackhawk 4 5/8 357/9mm revolver. This gives you all the options plus for fun and practice you can shoot a 9mm round which is cheaper than a 38 special. Of course a 357 magnum S/A D/A revolver is a option but I don't think you can get a better all around revolver than the one I just describe.

Best of luck
Howard
http://i656.photobucket.com/albums/uu283/HPitt74985/DSC00116.jpg

Lawdawg45
October 14, 2011, 02:55 PM
Probably the best multi-tasker would be the Ruger Blackhawk in .38/.357 with the extra 9mm cylinder. I myself prefer the .45 Colt, and you have the option of subsonic cowboy loads, standard load SWC, or the plethora of self defense rounds. If you ever doubt what can be accomplished with a SA handgun, check out some of the SASS shooters on You Tube.;)

LD

Cougar
October 14, 2011, 04:13 PM
The OP said hiking/camping, so I gotta thing weight would be a factor. Also weather! For those reasons, Stainless, and .357. Better ME than a .44Spl and about the same as a 45Colt in a smaller/lighter package. I would think that a d/a revolver would be easier/quicker to use under stress than a s/a. Fixed sight for snag-resistance, cheap and fun to shoot with .38s.

With those thoughts, I'd be thinking S&W 65 or Ruger GP100 in .357.

P5 Guy
October 14, 2011, 04:32 PM
Super Red Hawk by Ruger

David E
October 14, 2011, 05:34 PM
If you ever doubt what can be accomplished with a SA handgun, check out some of the SASS shooters on You Tube.;)

LD

Yeah, pretty impressive.....when stoked with mouse-fart loads.

Put some true magnums in there, it's a different story.

Still, a practiced hand with a single action can do quite a bit with six shots. Getting the second six loaded into the same gun takes some practice, also. Hopefully, the situation was satisfactorily resolved with the first six.

bsms
October 14, 2011, 05:36 PM
Given your preferences, consider a Blackhawk 45 convertible. Put in the 45 acp cylinder, and you can shoot 45 acp at under $20/50 round box (vs $32 for a 44 mag). When you want something really big, put in the 45 Long Colt cylinder and you can shoot up to 44 mag power rounds.

SA is OK against bad guy type threats IF you practice it a lot. If it is just 'natural' to cock as you raise the gun, then you keep the gun lowered until you decide to shoot, and cock as you raise it, then shoot. Unless someone practices it a lot, shooting from the hip is the way to empty your gun without hitting anything. Take the extra .25-.5 sec and plan on HITTING with one shot.

Then move. Don't stand in one spot shooting, even if you have a Glock with a 50 round drum. Shoot. Move. Decide. Shoot. Move. Decide. Repeat as needed.

If you stand still emptying YOUR gun, you give the BG time to empty HIS gun into you - and you are an easy target. But if you shoot & move, then a SA won't hurt you much in terms of firepower. And better to get on 45 shot that hits than any number scattered in the general direction of the BG...

oldfool
October 14, 2011, 05:53 PM
Well.. when you hear the siren sing her song, she is probably singing your song, you know. So if it sounds like a 44 or 45 symphony , no reason to fight it; all choices named above are good choices.

but... while not meaning to pile on... do 'consider' the 38/357 anyway
As others have said, more rounds downrange equal more fun, and it's tough to beat bang for your ammo buck with a 38/357

PS
woobie warning, in defense of the S&W model 66
Iit may not (?) be the perfect 357, but it is the pert-near perfect 38+P
Moreover, the forcing cone issue is way overplayed
You can make it happen if you work at it, shooting 'SuperVel' or extra Hot/FAST 125 gr or lighter loads, but thousands of 'em have handled thousands of 158 gr SAMMI 357, no problemo
the too oft cited "fragility" of k-frame S&Ws strikes me as having about as much merit as the silliness about them old Colts being made of glass ;)

proven
October 14, 2011, 09:44 PM
thanks for all of the responses. i didn't expect so much support for the .357. i'm certainlly not opposed to the caliber, i just figured .44mag/.45 would be a better option for the larger game (bears, moose, mt lion). and, as stated, .45 just has that "ring" to it when you speak it. i may get in to reloading in the future, i just have too many other things going to consider it now.

still unsure as to double or single action, but i keep looking at 4 5/8" blackhawks (yes, in .357 too). stainless probably makes more sense for woods carry, but blued guns have always been my fav.

seems like this may be a case of getting past some of my long held preferences in in favor of the most practicality. i kind-of want to hang my head with my hands in my pockets and kick the dirt.:D

David E
October 14, 2011, 10:27 PM
The easy answer is, for an "all around" outdoor handgun is:

If you don't reload, .357

If you do, .44 magnum.

The .44 also has a ring to it, especially if you say it; ".44 MAAAAG-num"

:D

Deputy25
October 14, 2011, 11:13 PM
A four inch Smith and Wesson 19.

armoredman
October 15, 2011, 12:12 AM
proven, don't go with what we like, go with what you like that is practical for what you want to do with it. Whatever you buy won't be making me happy or unhappy, but it will make you happy or unhappy. Guns are both practical and fun, see if you can't squeeze them both in there. ;)

proven
October 15, 2011, 12:28 AM
good advice, armoredman. believe me, i'm not out to satiate anyones desires except my own. it just nice to get an objective view of the situation sometimes to put thing in to perspective. in all likelyhood, i'll end up with more than one in the longrun anyway, i just like to try and make the most sense out of each purchase ( if that make any sense).

Arcticfox
October 15, 2011, 01:10 AM
Since you mentioned .44, I recommend you look at a Taurus Tracker because:

1) Medium frame vs large frame (lighter to carry)
2) it will fire mag rounds
3) I know .357 is cheaper, but if bears are around, I'll take the .44
4) double action is better for a quick shot

sidheshooter
October 15, 2011, 01:56 AM
I may as well jump on the dog pile too. My "do it all" revolver is a 3" S&W 65, much as others have suggested, for all the same reasons. Plus, heavy .357s are nothing to turn one's nose up at.

However...

This is America; nobody says you can only have one woods gun. Since I also love a good SA (I still have the '56 flatgate single six that I learned on as a kid), I sometimes take my Ruger Vaquero .44 special when out and about on the trail. With heavy loads, the .44 spec is nothing to sneeze at either.

DA/SA, it's all good; same with .357 vs .44 or .45. Get what moves you now, and start saving for the next one. If you don't have both a K frame .357, and a blackhawk/vaquero, you are suffering needlessly.

:)

Sport45
October 15, 2011, 02:06 AM
Why do folks say the .357 is the better general purpose gun if you don't reload?

If the concern is cost then whether you reload or not doesn't matter. The .357 is also less expensive to reload for than the .44mag or .45 Colt.

For carry while hunting, hiking, and just having fun at the range it would be hard to beat a GP-100 or Smith L-frame .357mag.

(Unless you're worried about bear attacks, then you must look into something belt fed.) :)

Stainz
October 15, 2011, 07:42 AM
I am going to step into it up to my neck and say - get a revolver chambered for .45 ACP's. They are the most frugal big-bore you can shoot. WallyWorld and other stores carry the UMC 250 packs of brass cased 230gr FMJ ball ammo for <$90 - that's $18/50! It would be nice if it would chamber .45 Colts, too - the convertible Ruger Blackhawk is available in such a configuration. But - it is SA-only - I like the option of DA/SA. Enter my choice... a new S&W Governor:

http://s171.photobucket.com/albums/u307/Stainz_2007/001-1.jpg

Yeah, it's kind of big to have only a 2.75" barrel. It's 30 oz weight is good, thanks to it's Al/Sc frame. It comes with the RH grips above - I subbed a spare .500 Magnum monogrip for better recoil control. The fixed sight means it will have an ammo/distance combo problem you may have to mentally adapt to as well. It really isn't 'perfect' for anything, save range fun... perhaps home or car defending, too. It aint proud, ammo-wise - it'll shoot .45 ACPs and .45 GAPs in moonclips; .45 Colt and .45 Schofield; and 2.5" .410 shells, too. Oddly, my local WallyWorld carries Win PDX1 shotshells and .45 Colt protection rounds - even combo packs... as if they are 'Governor-ammo-central'!

Now, if you enjoy plinking - and want something less expensive to shoot - consider a .22LR revolver. You can shoot a lot - for a little - in ammo cost. Start saving your sheckles now - rimfire revolvers aren't inexpensive. Still, a current 617 - or a good used 17/18 - is hard to beat. Good luck!

Stainz

PS Save your cf brass whatever you get. I never thought I'd reload, either.... wrong!

Lawdawg45
October 15, 2011, 08:10 AM
"Yeah, pretty impressive.....when stoked with mouse-fart loads. Put some true magnums in there, it's a different story."

Yes and no. Some folks at the clubs I shoot at use the .38 mouse phart loads, but most do not. I use the .45 200 grain LRN that travels at around 850 fps which is almost the identical data of the Keith SD load, and the Black Powder shooters are a different story all together. Numerous times I've been hit by lead fragments from a BP shooter 2 lanes down, and I doubt their loads were "subsonic":D

My actual point was the sheer volume of shooting by the CAS folks. As a Deputy I was required to qualify 2 times per year firing 120 rounds each course, while many of my SASS friends shoot 1000+ rounds each month, and the timing adds an element of stress to fire under, plus the transition from weapon to weapon and the multiple targets provide so much more than a single 4 ft FBI target.;)

LD

skidder
October 15, 2011, 01:09 PM
Sounds like you live in bear country. The "bear" minimum would be a 44.:D I spent alot of time hiking the Cabinet mountains here in Montana and black bears are common with occasional Grizzlies. I think a double action 44 would be your best bet for bears. Here is my 5.5 Redhawk.

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=150471&d=1318039606

Arcticfox
October 15, 2011, 02:11 PM
If you're going to go 357, GP 100 is great. Also consider Smith and Wesson 686. They are both medium frame revolvers. If you are hiking, I recommend a medium for a revolver because it is lighter than a large frame. Taurus tracker is a another good choice. It is light and is tough.

proven
October 16, 2011, 09:54 PM
so, the responses in this thread and a ton of reading has me leaning towards the .357. i like the gp100 and the sp101. the gp in either the 3 or 4 in ch barrel and the sp in the 3 inch. pros and cons of each? either will end up with badger grips and a simply rugged pancake holster. i figure the sp would be lighter and easier to carry especially in summer. the gp in 4 inch would make better use of the magnums and be a bit more to hold onto in the winter. the 4 inch has adjustable sights but i'm not sure they're necessary. also read a review on filing a couple front sights to match different loads and simply switching them out accordingly. what would be your choice?

MachIVshooter
October 16, 2011, 10:07 PM
Why do folks say the .357 is the better general purpose gun if you don't reload?

Ammunition cost (half) and availability (far more common).

iyn
October 17, 2011, 05:41 AM
All good advise given in this thread. Try the guns before you buy it. I learned the hard way. What may think will be good may not be when you shoot it.

CajunBass
October 17, 2011, 07:01 AM
The inherent weakness of the design means that is you fire much "hot" 357 ammo through it (particularly hot 125gr loads) you risk cracking the forcing cone. Since it's been so long since these guns were produced replacement parts are no longer available. So, if you crack your forcing cone your 66 become an expesive piece is scrap metal.

I would LOVE to have the opportunity to shoot a Model 19 or a Model 66 enough to worry about cracking the forcing cone. If I ever did I'd just buy another one.

Yes, you can do it. You can also blow up a Glock, shoot a Python loose, and various and sundry other failures. If you go through life worried about what might happen, you'll miss out on a lot of pleasures. A K-frame in .357 would be one of them. If you are worried about it, the solution is obvious. Don't shoot a lot of "hot" 357 ammo. Stick to more normal loads and don't worry about it.

For me, knocking around in the woods, I worry more about being attacked by mad pine cones than I do bears or zombies. My bum around gun is always a 22, but then I'm lazy and cheap. :)

336A
October 17, 2011, 10:18 AM
I think the Ruger BH in .44 SPL which is regual catalog item now should get an honorable mention too. http://www.gunblast.com/Ruger-44Flattop.htm

With the righrt ammo it is a godd thumper and would be a perfect reason to get into handloading, be sure click on reviews to see customer comments. http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=88

David E
October 17, 2011, 11:58 AM
Why do folks say the .357 is the better general purpose gun if you don't reload?:)

Because of the wide and varied selection of factory loads in .357 AND .38 Special.

Many of us presume that everyone knows a .357 can also shoot .38 Special, but I'll mention just in case: A .357 can shoot .38 Special, thereby extending your load selection. You can have a shotshell for snakes, a 148 wadcutter for small game, 125 grain JHP's for people defense, 158's for "all around" and 180's for the big stuff.

In the matter of a GP-100 vs the SP-101, get the GP. Easier to shoot and it has adjustable sights.

OldCavSoldier
October 17, 2011, 12:07 PM
My two cents is: S&W M686P (7-shot) with a 3-inch barrel, or an M686 (6-shot) with a 4-inch barrel.

Iggy
October 17, 2011, 12:22 PM
4 inch medium frame .38/357 of the flavor of your choosing.

easyg
October 17, 2011, 09:50 PM
Get a Ruger GP100.

You will not regret it!


http://i112.photobucket.com/albums/n165/allenXdog/HPIM7181.jpg

StrawHat
October 18, 2011, 08:17 AM
I look at it a different way. I prefer to carry the lightest revolver that will get the job done, not the heaviest. Especially if carrying other gear. For me, that rules out the Ruger revolvers. Just something else to consider.

osteodoc08
October 18, 2011, 02:56 PM
But just think, when you run out of ammo, with the ruger you have an awesome club as opposed to a whiffle ball bat! LOL

osteodoc08
October 18, 2011, 02:59 PM
As far as the OP question is concerned, I've always loved hot 45 Colt loads out of the ruger, but a DA in 44mag would probably be the easiest to find with the configuration your wanting. Perhaps a 4" gun in stainless would be your excellent "packin" gun given your four legged critters you mentioned.

David E
October 18, 2011, 03:49 PM
I look at it a different way. I prefer to carry the lightest revolver that will get the job done, not the heaviest. Especially if carrying other gear. For me, that rules out the Ruger revolvers. Just something else to consider.

I prefer to carry the gun that'll do the job I'm bringing it for, weight mot being a critical factor.

If it IS, then I'll lighten the load somewhere else, or hit the gym so I can carry it all.

I won't skimp on any life/defense tool.

azrn
October 18, 2011, 06:43 PM
i will take the sw 686. that way i can use bird shot to feed me and the baddist 357 cal slug to protect me. with a good 4 in barrel.
azrn

osteodoc08
October 18, 2011, 06:45 PM
He did say the lightest "to get the job done" I guess for me it would be a "heavy ruger"

What's the weight difference of a redhawk in SS vs smith 629? I'm too lazy to look it up....

proven
October 18, 2011, 07:24 PM
so, i've been leaning more and more towards the 3 inch gp100. i checked out a 4 inch at a shop today and compared it to a 3 inch 686 to see what the 3 inch version would be like. i must say, the action and trigger on the smith was really nice, but i have a thing against those silly locks and won't buy one.

i'd still like to get my mitts on a sp101 to check it out. so we'll see.

Legionnaire
October 18, 2011, 07:57 PM
The three inch GP is sweet. And one of the nice things about Rugers is that they slick up nicely just from use, and they are not too difficult to work on if you want to do some polishing. Head over to RugerForum.com and nose around for Iowegan's GP "IBOK" (Iowegan's Book of Knowledge). Good stuff.

Yarddog
October 18, 2011, 08:15 PM
I would'nt over look the 4" Security Six Weight Lighter than the 3" GP 100 & Just as Tuff & the right grips is as accurate as any JMO ; )
Y/D

David E
October 18, 2011, 08:41 PM
What's the weight difference of a redhawk in SS vs smith 629? I'm too lazy to look it up....

Hey, that's interesting, because I'm too lazy to look it up FOR you!

:D

osteodoc08
October 18, 2011, 10:48 PM
Edited for previous lack of judgement with response

osteodoc08
October 18, 2011, 10:58 PM
629 with 4" barrel is 41.5 ounces
Redhawk with 4" barrel is 47 ounces.

I personally don't think I'd notice the extra 5.5 ounces as a packin gun.

See, I guess I wasn't too lazy afterall

proven
October 18, 2011, 10:59 PM
redhawk .44mag 5.5" bbl......49 oz
629 .44mag 5" bbl....44.3 oz

osteodoc beat me.

osteodoc08
October 18, 2011, 11:01 PM
And on the light side, the Taurus 444 titanium with 4" barrel is 28.3 Ounces

sedona
October 18, 2011, 11:03 PM
The 3 inch gp 100 is good choice for what you need it for.I carry one when hiking and feel comfortable with it.

olafhardtB
October 19, 2011, 04:46 AM
I don't know why nobody has mentioned the s&w 3 " model 60 357.It is a good little revolver that is easy to carry. I put a Pachmayr Decellorater grip on mine and it's not too bad with full power 357's.

lloveless
October 19, 2011, 11:03 AM
I have had an gp-100 with a 4 inch barrel. What a shooter, alas i sold it. Kind of heavy for all day carrying except in a shoulder holster. I now have a Redhawk .44mag with 4 inch barrel. Carrying in a Simply Rugged ok for 2-4 hours a day, but the weight gets to me. All day carry in a shoulder holster. I also have an sp-101 witha 3 inch barrel. At around 30 oz loaded I find it packs nicely all day in a OWB holster. If need to carry for bear(black) corbon makes a 200 gr .357 bullet. Good luck with your selection.
ll

StrawHat
October 21, 2011, 06:01 AM
David E,

Not trying to ruffle feathers but I never said to scrimp on what you want to carry. I recommend carrying the lightest to that will accmplish the job. If that is a Ruger for you, have fun.

I tend to pack light so lightening the load elsewhere can mean leaving critical things behind.

As for hitting the gym, I work for a living so I get all the exercise I need.

David E
October 21, 2011, 09:49 AM
David E,

Not trying to ruffle feathers but I never said to scrimp on what you want to carry. I recommend carrying the lightest to that will accmplish the job. If that is a Ruger for you, have fun.

For many people, this translates to the "a gun is a gun" mentality. They think ANY gun will do the job. this makes sense until one thinks about it for 2 seconds.

I tend to pack light so lightening the load elsewhere can mean leaving critical things behind.

Again, most people that say this are of the "a gun is a gun" mentality and might choose a North American Arms for defense. If bears are a concern, then they get one in .22 magnum......

Glad that's not you.

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