S&W 438/638 Bodyguard


March 13, 2012, 10:39 AM
I am an old fan of Smith&Wesson. My first handguns were a Model 66 and a Model 25 in .45 ACP, which I bought for myself over 30 years ago. I like the old style guns, especially the classic line. Now I am thinking of a snub nose and I really like the Bodyguards, not the new one with the laser sight but the Model 438 or 638. How do you like it, if you have one. And I may also dream about a Model 27.

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March 13, 2012, 10:52 AM
I've owned a model 49 for many many years. It's nickel plated and still looks good even though it still gets shot a few times a year. It held up well to daily carry for a few years and shoots laser straight.

It may well be the single most well fit and tightest Smith I've ever owned. And I have owned quite a few over the years. It was made in 1967 and is twice the revolver Smith sells these days.

If you look around and take your time you may be rewarded with an excellent well fit gun that you will be proud to carry and shoot.

March 13, 2012, 12:23 PM
I own a M638 and I think it's the best J frame S&W makes, I really like the Bodyguard frame. If the M438 was out when i bought the M638 I would have bought the M438 instead. I also own a M442, I like that gun a lot too.

March 13, 2012, 12:24 PM
I have a 638. It's my EDC. I like it very much. It's very accurate and easy to conceal and draw. My only complaint is that the finish isn't very durable. It's not a dealbreaker though, as this is my carry gun, and I expect the finish to wear. It's still just as reliable. The only change that I've made is I painted the front blade with orange nail polish and it's held up fine. Buy one, I don't think you can go wrong. I like the fact that it is a snag free hammer design, while still having the single action capability. The single action is fun at the range.

March 13, 2012, 12:53 PM
A very fine gun indeed. I love my 638 Humpback and shoot it often. When I pocket carry it's whats in my pocket.

March 13, 2012, 03:53 PM
I have a 638 that's on my carry rotation. Nice piece, easy to shoot, reliable. Good buy.

XD 45acp
March 13, 2012, 04:15 PM
I LOVE mine... The only change I made was the grips,... went back to old school with them. I didn't care for the modern factory grips.

Ken 45LC
March 13, 2012, 05:05 PM
If you look hard and willing to pay a little more you can still find a nice pre-lock model. I'm not sure what mine is, it looks like a 438, but made prior to that designation. It is my daily take anywhere piece. And with practice you will be surprised at how far you can shoot accurately with it. I put bigger grips on mine to help me shoot it better.

bdb benzino
March 14, 2012, 12:04 AM
Love mine also, best of both worlds with the shrouded hammer and still being able to use single action if necessary. Like the above poster, I would have picked the 438 if I had the choice.

March 14, 2012, 12:46 AM
Since there is a picture already I'll add a few myself. I'm a big fan of the Bodyguard frame!

With original S&W Service grips:

With S&W Target grips:

With Eagle Boot grips:

With original Uncle Mike's boot grips:

With Pachmayr Compac grips:

XD 45acp
March 14, 2012, 07:48 AM
Oh Thanks alot Arch, now I got slobber all over my laptop...

March 14, 2012, 12:43 PM
Oh Thanks alot Arch, now I got slobber all over my laptop...
Sorry.... Just trying to help! LOL

Hondo 60
March 14, 2012, 08:41 PM
How about the original - a Model 38 (with Altamont stocks)?
serial number dates it to about 1969-1970



March 14, 2012, 08:51 PM
I agree that the older guns are as nice or nicer than the new ones. I have a flat latch 38 that I love. I also got it for a lot less than the new 442 that was sitting next to it in the case.

March 14, 2012, 09:01 PM
Ahh, the M442, that's my daily carry!


March 15, 2012, 08:59 AM
I had a flat latch Model 38 I carried as my EDC for many years. Replaced it with a 638-2. I wanted the stainless finish and +P capability. It still gets pocket duty when I pack my Model 19 Combat Magnum as primary but most days it has been supplanted by a Kahr PM9.

March 15, 2012, 09:24 AM
Ah, found a picture of mine.http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=158443&d=1328478038

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