S&W Model 19/66?


October 17, 2012, 01:54 AM
Been hearing alot about the K-frame magnums. Anyone have one (or two, or three or....) and feel like sharing your experience with them? Pics would be nice too ;)

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October 17, 2012, 04:44 AM
S&W 19s and 66s are considered to be some of the most perfect revolvers the company has ever produced. The snubs in particular are exquisite pieces of workmanship and performance. The phase out of the K and transition to the L had more to do with durability re: magnum rounds than any perceived shortcomings with the K-frame. Ks are becoming pricier as collectors realize the value of this fine revolver platform. No S&W collection is complete without at least one 19 and/or 66.

October 17, 2012, 05:37 AM
I've owned a couple of Model 66s, one an early no dash variant and another more recent one with MIM hammer and trigger.
Both needed a bit of a tune up after a couple of years, The cylinder stop spring died after 38 years in the no dash and the MIM hammer block failed in the in the more modern one.
Accuracy was excellent with both. My first five shots through the no dash knocked over 4 out of 5 100 yard rams.
Balance with the standard heavy barrel is good, but not as 'perfect' as the tapered barrel .38 special Model 15.
In my hands the Goncalo Alves target stocks pointed more naturally than the Pachmayer Grippers I also used, but the Pachmayers had the edge for concealment and if using a speed loader.
The triggers are typical S&W, a fairly heavy double action of around 12 pounds and a very crisp 3 to 4 pound single action.
The red ramp insert on the later gun was much easier to see than the stainless front sight of the 1970s gun.
I've recently traded of my Model 66 in favor of a six inch Model 28 and I don't regret the trade. If I was going to carry one the 66 would win. If I was going to play IDPA the Model 66 would win. But as most of my shooting these days is down the line, the Model 28 is better suited to my requirements.

October 17, 2012, 05:45 AM
Got this one several years ago from a co-worker for $260.00. It's a tack driver. Model 19-3. It gets shot occasionally. No plans on ever getting rid of it.

October 17, 2012, 07:36 AM
I really like the size of the K frame S&W's with a 4" barrel. They handle the recoil of .357 loads just fine and are, of course pussycats with .38 Specials.

Mine is a 66 no dash that I picked up several years ago and is very accurate.


October 17, 2012, 09:28 AM
Ahh yes, the model 19, one of my favorites to be sure. The balance with the 4" gun is divine. This one is the collector.


This one is a rescued 66, now bead blasted matte. This one is the shooter.


October 17, 2012, 10:06 AM
Either one is a excellent choice. I have a 19-2 4 inch and a 66-4 4 inch. I believe S&W K frame revolvers are the best all around revolver ever made by S&W.


October 17, 2012, 10:29 AM
i prefer the model 65 4 inch heavy barrel fixed sight.no rear sight to damage if dropped or rusting.the ideal to me is the model 65 3 inch heavy barrel round butt fixed sight.compact for ccw carry,stainless forcorrosion issues,but still the great addition to the model 19 family.

October 17, 2012, 10:34 AM
I have this 2 1/2" model 66-1. I would like to get a blue model 19, either 2 1/2" or 4" one day.

October 17, 2012, 11:57 AM
I've got 4 K frame guns. And two of them are the 19 and 66 you're asking about. I've also got an N frame 28 and have shot L frames belonging to friends on quite a few occasions. Of the lot I actually prefer the K frame guns for most of my shooting.

In a word? Let's say "Delightful". For me the K frame balance in the hand very nicely for the style of shooting I like doing and using them for. Namely a mix of standing freestyle bullseye and run around "action" matches. The 19 does very well for me in my revolver class in our local club level Speed Steel meets. And I just used my 66 in one of our local IDPA meets for the first time. A little rocky with the speed loaders but otherwise for a first time under the timer I did pretty decent with it.

By the way, from this description you can see that ALL of my handgun shooting is range time only. I also shoot primarily .38Spl out of the guns. And when I do shoot .357's I prefer my own reloads that are down in pressure and velocity from maximum by about 10% to tone down the recoil for the lighter guns.

For full power, longer distance and flatter trajectory the 28 gets loaded up with full power .357 rounds. The extra mass tones down the smack to the hands and makes the full power rounds a delight out of the 28. It's not that I'm afraid of using the full power rounds in the 19 or 66, it's just that I find it pounds my hands and wrist into a bit of shockyness after a cylinder or two so I prefer a "little off the top" with the lighter K frame guns. My favourite round to shoot from my K frame guns is .38Spl+P power levels in my reloads.

October 17, 2012, 02:02 PM
I'm absolutely addicted to K-Frame guns.

I have 3 Model 10s, a Model 64, and a Model 19-3.

What sweet shooters!


Thaddeus Jones
October 17, 2012, 03:23 PM
My very favorite revolvers. :) I agree with those who say the 19/66 were the finest revolvers to come out of S&W. There has been nothing as nicely made or beautifully designed and finished since.

I have multiple examples of both the 19 and the 66 in every barrel length made. 2.5", 3", 4", and 6". I have not found a 3" 19 - yet, so the 3 inch 66's will have to hold me over.

I have heard of 5 inch model 19 "lunchbox" guns being made. These were 19's that had 5 inch barrels made by employees and were allegedly smuggled out of the factory.

If I had to choose a favorite I guess it would be the pre lock 66 in 3 inch or 2.5 inch flavor. As a detective I carried both for many years. In my retirement I mostly carry an old 2.5" 19-4 beater.

Great revolvers that we won't see the likes of again. :(

Old Dog
October 17, 2012, 05:28 PM
Only the perfect blend of size and power. In four inch trim, the most wonderfully balanced revolver ever, in 2.5 inch snubby version, an awesome daily packer ... My favorites are the 19-3/19-4 P&R in blue, and the 66-4 snubby.


October 17, 2012, 05:30 PM
2.5" 66-3 here. Quite easily my favorite method of firing a 357 out of a handgun. I stick to heavy bullets 145gr and above. I don't know just how valid the concern of firing a light bullet in a K frame is, but I have no need to find out.

October 17, 2012, 05:44 PM
Here's a shot of my Model 65 3" .357...


I also have a security trade-in Model 10 with the same grips.

I love the way the K-frame balances in my hand. If I absolutely HAD to pick "one handgun if I could only own one," it could very well be the Model 65. A lot would depend on whether concealed carry is a huge factor. If it is, I would probably go with my J-frame Model Pro-60. But I do love the K-frames...


October 17, 2012, 05:47 PM
I have a 4" 19-3 blued, bought new in the mid-70's. The M-19's reportedly have a problem with cracking of the forcing cone, mostly with hot, light-bullet loads. The M-66's don't seem to have this problem.
This is my "walk in the woods" gun, stoked with +P handloads. A real sweet, well-balanced, and accurate gun. I have a 1-1/4", 5-shot group at 25 yards, open sights target posted on my reloading wall.

October 17, 2012, 07:28 PM
Love the K frame S&W! I have a 66-0 and 66-2 both with 2.5 bbls, a 64-4 sporting a 3' barrel and round butt and a 10-5 with the 4' skinny barrel. Love them all. At one time I also had a 65-0 and a 66-4 both with 4' barrels I regret selling them both, which I'm currently in the hunt to replace them both..... ;)

Black Knight
October 17, 2012, 07:45 PM
JFrame, I had to go check my collection to see if mine 65 was still there. It is. Yours looks identical to mine right down to the grips. My wife took my 2 1/2 inch 66-2 for her gun so I had to find another. I found a nice 3 inch 65-3 that I carry quite a bit when off duty.

October 17, 2012, 08:15 PM
JFrame, I had to go check my collection to see if mine 65 was still there. It is. Yours looks identical to mine right down to the grips. My wife took my 2 1/2 inch 66-2 for her gun so I had to find another. I found a nice 3 inch 65-3 that I carry quite a bit when off duty.

Hey, B.K. -- looks like we both scored a winner! http://www.kolobok.us/smiles/standart/good2.gif

My 65 came with wood grips, but I got the Pachmayr Compac grips for it. I really like those grips, so I also got them for my Model 10. I'll probably also get them for my 686 at some point, just to have consistency of feel across the three guns.


Flint Ridge
October 17, 2012, 08:28 PM
Oh Baby - gotta lot of love for the 66's. All P&R for me. I really need to clean them up and get some better shots of them. Great guns to shoot.

66-1 6" on top, then the 66 all SS including rear sights 4" and the MSHP 66-1 from below.


No dash snubbie with aftermarket grips - gotta get that fixed.

A little range time with 3 66's and a 27-2

66-1 MSHP my first and favorite...

October 17, 2012, 09:14 PM
Well the greatest endorsement I can give S&W k frames is I carry a 3" model 13 everyday. I have owned shot and carried all sorts of handguns and find I shoot the k frames the best. Not only is it accurate at slow deliberate fire but also as a fighting handgun running drills such as FBI quality etc.

Cocked & Locked
October 17, 2012, 09:15 PM
A couple of 66's and a 19

66-no dash



October 17, 2012, 10:14 PM
I've got a few in up to 6" flavor. My favorite is this 19-4 with boot grips. It is an excellent gun to carry AND shoot. The previous owner installed meprolight 3 dot sights on it.


October 17, 2012, 10:48 PM
I have a 4" 19-3 blued, bought new in the mid-70's. The M-19's reportedly have a problem with cracking of the forcing cone, mostly with hot, light-bullet loads.

Yep, my early 80s 6" M19 cracked the forcing cone but with 158 grain loads. S&W replaced it at their cost. I treat the pistol easier, when it gets shot, with only an occasional cylinder full of hot loads.

Love the revolver. I would like to get a 4" M19 or M66 someday. The wife's 4" M586 just does not have the same balance.

K frames are great.

October 18, 2012, 12:48 AM
I love you revolver guys, always willing to break out pics of your beauties at any givn opportunity :D
Making it very hard to wait till Im 21 to buy one :D

October 18, 2012, 01:36 AM
I've owned several of both 19's and 66's and they are very nice handlingand shooting guns. I like the 3 inch barrel versions but they are not easy to find. The 3" Model 19 is a grail gun and easily bring on the + side of $1,000 .

I rescued a 4 inch 66 that spent wet time from Katrina . I cut that 4 inch barrel down to 3 and managed to clean up the gun pretty well with some file work and bead blasting.

I would never pass up the K-frame guns when you find them for a decent price.

October 18, 2012, 01:44 PM
I've owned a couple of 19's over the years. Traded or sold them off for something else.

Today I've just got an old Model 66 (no dash).


October 18, 2012, 08:04 PM
My 66-2 with Ahrends..............


October 18, 2012, 09:02 PM
I spotted a very clean 6" model 14 K38 Masterpiece yesterday at a pawnshop, no box, no papers, no cleaning tool etc, just the revolver. I had to call for a cleanup on aisle 3 when I saw the asking price; $999.95.

I don't know when he believes he will move that one out the door.

October 18, 2012, 09:12 PM
Mine is an early 4" 66 just like the middle one in the top photo of post 20. I read somewhere they only put stainless rear sights on the first couple years production in the early '70s.

I love the way this gun balances. It just seems proportioned perfectly, and shoots great. I bought it used at the local gun shop a couple years ago for $350. It and the 629 are my favorite revolvers.

Another gun I really liked was a S&W model 60 in .357 mag with a 3" barrel. A friend bought it used (like new) at a show for $300. I could have bought it but didn't. It handled great for a small frame gun.

October 18, 2012, 09:27 PM
A Model 19 was the very first centerfire firearm I ever shot.... it was an early model (may even had been a "pre") -- blued, 4 inch, p&r, special-order wide target trigger and hammer, red ramp front, white outline rear, with the skinny "service"-type grips with a Pachmayr insert.
Dad later traded it off for a 66. I still have that 66, and still shoot it once in a while. It's a great gun, but I miss that old 19... would love to find another one just like it....

Saddlebag Preacher
October 18, 2012, 10:39 PM
Man I feel Old! My first duty gun was a Model 19, blued and dump pouch shell holders. The went to 66 when KSP carried them with speed loaders. 686 was my last duty revolver before we switched to S&W 659. My last was a Glock 19.

Now they are collector's items///:banghead:

By the way, that 19 was bought new for a little over $150.00. I bought a new model 10 light barrel in 1982 for $125.00 plus tax.

October 19, 2012, 02:10 AM
Many consider the 19/66 the finest .357 revolvers S&W ever made. It's surely "one of." My 4" M66 sleeps by the bed with a load of +P in it.
Most range sessions it gets a diet of +P level handloads in magnum cases but I always run a dozen or so 158gr Big Dogs through it as well. Good fun. :D

For shooting a lot of full house magnums I really prefer the L frame 686 though.

This is my early no dash.


October 19, 2012, 04:53 AM
You know you are a gun nut when:
Reason 101: You look at gun pics on the web and go Awwhh! The way other people do about cat videos or puppy pics.
Reason 102: You explain at the start of a thread why you have just sold a particular model of gun. Then you come back to the thread and start thinking I need one of those....

October 19, 2012, 10:32 PM
I love it ! Shoots great, handles great, awesome trigger! I thought the long barrel would be cumbersome but it wasn't. I have a model 57 N frame mtn gun in 41 Mag w/a 4" tapered barrel, so I thought the 6" would not be to my liking, but as it turns out, it is just fine the way it is. I was shopping for a 4" barrel when I found this one, it was just too good a deal to pass up. This is my only K/frame, but grew up shooting a Combat Masterpiece in 22lr and a K38 in 38 spl, so I knew I would like it.

Deaf Smith
October 22, 2012, 07:24 PM
Can;'t beat a good snub .357!


S&W or Ruger.


October 23, 2012, 04:47 PM
One of my favorites: 19-3


October 23, 2012, 05:42 PM
No pics but in K frame I have a 617 ND 6", a 66 ND 2 1/2", and a 66 ND 4". Notice all of mine are stainless steel including my 629-1 8 3/8" and my security six 4".:neener:

October 24, 2012, 12:46 AM
I REALLY like those Ahrend grips :cool:

October 24, 2012, 06:38 AM
Love the 66s for all of the reasons already given. This 4" has the best factory trigger of all the S&Ws i've owned.


October 24, 2012, 10:16 AM
This 66 is one of my favorites to shoot. I had Milt Sparks make a cross draw holster for it that fits like a glove.


October 24, 2012, 07:09 PM
I'll chime in here also -

Model 19-6 2 1/2"

Model 66-4 4"

Model 19-3 4"

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