Coonan 357, Difference between new and old one?


June 3, 2012, 08:36 AM

I'm planning to buy a Coonan 357 Magnum. I noticed that the gun is in production again. Are there any important differences between the old one and the new one? Which one would you recommend me to get?

A gun store in reach has an old Coonan at a reasonable price for sale. The serial number of the gun starts with the letter "B". Is it therefore a model "B" or does the first digit of the serial number say nothing about the model?



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June 4, 2012, 11:00 AM
Model As were linked barrels, like the 1911; Model Bs are linkless, like the P-35. I don't know about the serial numbers.

Perhaps the biggest difference is that when the old ones were available new, there was no .357 SIG pistol. Now, a lot of folks might say, with the .357 SIG available, getting a .357 Mag auto is just silly.

But I wouldn't say that. I'd be happy to be silly, and own one.

June 4, 2012, 02:50 PM
I love the picture on the website:

"Looking for your first pistol?

...This isn't it."


LoosedHorse I agree that owning is better than drooling.

Chuck Perry
June 4, 2012, 09:30 PM
The new production ones are able to fire both 38 Specials and 357 Magnums with only a recoil spring change. The old production B's were able to fire 38's, but you needed a special magazine in addition to the spring. I think that if you were to buy an older production B, you can have a new manufacture magazine factory modified to fit and function in it. The new manufacture models have some cosmetic enhancements, as well as an adjustable sight option.

I had a Coonan Model B and enjoyed it, till I unfortunately sold it. I was all fired up to purchase one when the company started up again. But I did not. It came down to this: what could the $1400 Coonan do that my $700 S&W 686 SSR could not? If I had the $ to just blow, I'd get one in a heartbeat. But ultimately, the Coonan does not really do anything "more better" than my 686 to justify the purchase.

June 4, 2012, 11:07 PM
Chuck unfortunately I think the majority of potential buyers for the new Coonan are of the same frame of mind as you (and I see nothing wrong with that). I think this will become a novelty handgun along the lines of the Mateba.

To the OP, the guns in current production appear to be Model As with the linked barrel but most of the parts are interchangeable. On their website it says they provide magazines (for $50!:what:) but they have to be modified for use in the Model B. They do not mention if they will modify it.

June 4, 2012, 11:36 PM
I think the price is probably keeping a lot of people from getting one, myself included. I love the .357 mag and would like it in an auto platform, but for $1400, I'd rather fill my practical wants/needs first. OP, not that it's not practical for you, I just have different niches to fill.

Chuck Perry
June 4, 2012, 11:50 PM
There was a fella that posted over on that helped design the new magazines. I think he posted over there about modifying the new mags for use in the old guns, which is where I'm coming from with that info.

June 5, 2012, 09:15 AM
I don't know anything about the old ones, but I recently got a new one, and I love it. It is very accurate, and recoil is mild. It also performs flawlessly. You definitely need to change out the springs to shoot 38s. I tried shooting 38+Ps with the magnum spring, and it was a single-shot.

June 5, 2012, 09:16 AM
I didn't see the .38 Special spring on their website. Did I miss it?

June 5, 2012, 10:19 AM
The new ones come with two springs. And a statement on the carrying case that says, "Nothing left to envy."

Dain Bramage
June 5, 2012, 01:29 PM
I tried shooting 38+Ps with the magnum spring, and it was a single-shot.

Same thing with my mild HP38 magnum reloads. But everything I load with 2400 and every commercial magnum round has fired without a hiccup. Beautiful gun if you keep it in its power range.

I haven't even tried the .38 Spl spring. Don't have any other .38 Spl guns, so I don't keep the ammo around. Might buy some if I'm training a new shooter or young person. Besides, the magnum rounds are too much fun in the Coonan.

June 5, 2012, 05:35 PM
Thank you for the info. I will get the Model B if the gunsmith still has the gun by the time I receive my buying permit. I spoke with a weapon dealer about getting a new Coonan. Unfortunately there is no official importer here so the dealer would have to import it himself ... which would raise the price to over USD 2'000.-- ...

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