Taurus, Ruger, or S&W?


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d-dogg
January 24, 2013, 06:51 PM
Looking at three .357s on Gunbroker right now.

Taurus 66, blued, 4", will probably hit $350-$360.
S&W 19-3, blued, will probably go for $600.
Ruger Police Service 6, SS, will probably take $550 to $570.

I own guns made by all 3 manufacturers.
No issues with Taurus, other than they are heavy, and their blued finishes are poor quality, IMO.

Ruger is a step up, but again, are heavy.

S&W is nice but dang they are expensive. Maybe that's why the original finish on my 30 year old S&W looks brand new.

Sure, you get what you pay for, but I'm trying to stay under $500.

The revolver would be intended for a bedside gun, so I really don't give a darn about Taurus' crappy finish.

In terms of reliability, do any of you have personal experience with any failures on the Taurus? Or should I just pony up the money for the S&W?

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JRWhit
January 24, 2013, 07:01 PM
Taurus carries an outstanding warranty,you might check with the manufacturer but I believe it stays with the firearm regardless of transfer.
My bias is with Ruger. I've always felt I get a great quality for a lower price.
With S&W I've always felt I was buying there name and getting a revolver as incentive. But at brass tax,you said bedside gun. Get the taurus. It exceeds the job you want it to do and doesn't break bank.



BTW, everyone else keep an eye on this,I bet he gets the S&W

USAF_Vet
January 24, 2013, 07:08 PM
Go with what you can afford. If you've set yourself a budget of $500, get the Taurus and some ammo. You might be able to squeak byt with the Ruger, if you are extremely lucky. Sadly, the Smith is probably out of the running at your set price point.

skidder
January 24, 2013, 07:16 PM
Ruger is a step up, but again, are heavy

The Security Six models were not heavier than the Smith 19/66.
The newer GP models are bulkier and heavier.

I have two 4" Six models and they are both under 34 oz.

As far as what to get?? I would stick with Ruger or S&W. The 19/66 and Ruger Six Series are well worth the extra money.

d-dogg
January 24, 2013, 07:19 PM
I'm so mad at myself already - let a Service Six get away from me this morning. It sold at $430, and I only bid $400.

After doing some research, I see those babies bring $500 on up pretty regularly.

roaddog28
January 24, 2013, 08:13 PM
This is my home defense and bedside revolver. I would trust my life with this revolver. I have owned both S&W and Taurus. But this is the revolver I trust the most.
Opinion only,
Howard
Ruger Police Service Six 4 inch
http://i656.photobucket.com/albums/uu283/HPitt74985/RugerServiceSix.jpg

d-dogg
January 24, 2013, 09:28 PM
Ya know Howard, the more I read on the Service Six, the more I like them. Wish I would have bagged that one earlier.

Maybe another will show up and go low.

The Taurus is coming up on auction first, but I can order a brand new 66 through Davidsons for $415, so I think I am going to bide my time a bit.

sleepyone
January 24, 2013, 10:15 PM
Smith and Wesson first
Ruger a close second
Taurus a distant third

MedWheeler
January 24, 2013, 11:00 PM
I own the Taurus, built in 1987, and the Ruger, built in 1976. I do not own the Smith, but did carry a department-issued S&W .38 revolver (M67) for a few years back in the day. That was a great gun once outfitted with Pachmayr grips; I even placed at or near the top in some LE-revolver shoots with it.

I've owned the Taurus since it was new. It is a great performer, with one issue: the sleeve on the ejector rod sometimes worked loose, locking the cylinder shut. A little Loc-Tite on the threads fixes that. The gun balances well in the hand, and shoots pretty much to point of aim at 25 yards with 158-grain .38 Special stuff, much more of which I've shot from it than Magnum fodder. The Taurus handles the Magnum stuff well, but I've really shot probably a couple hundred rounds of that over the two-plus decades I've had it. My blued finish has held up, though it did suffer some while on the streets for two and a half years trading hands after being stolen in 1989 during a vehicle burglary.

The Ruger Police Service Six was my father's service revolver when he worked a stint in LE in a rural Colorado county back in the eighties. We didn't know each other back then, and I don't know when he got the gun, but I doubt he got it new. It remained his bedside gun until he died in 2010; he had showed it to me in 2004, so I knew he had it well before his death.
It's rock-solid, blued-steel with some noticeable holster wear, rubber (Pachmayr?) grips, and locks up tight, more so than the Taurus. The cylinder does not spin as freely as that on the Taurus, making this gun feel more solid and well-assembled. The rear sight is nothing more than a groove along the top strap, like that on a snub-38 or a Remington 1858. But, the gun does shoot straight out to 15 yards; I have not shot it past that yet. Like the Taurus, it has not seen nearly as much Magnum ammo as .38 fodder.

Of the two, for a defensive-use firearm, I favor the Ruger. Both have sentimental value to me, as one was my first handgun, and the other my dad's service weapon. For range fun, the Taurus would get the nod because of its adjustable rear sight.

Incidentally, the Ruger is on my hip right now.

bigtubby
January 24, 2013, 11:14 PM
Never owned a Taurus but would buy a Smith first and would not hesitate to take a Ruger in the six series.

788Ham
January 25, 2013, 01:28 AM
From my experiences with Smith's and Ruger, I don't even consider Taurus, kind of like looking at a Henry J when you want a Mustang.

Lucky Derby
January 25, 2013, 02:49 AM
At your price point, the Ruger would get my $$$. The S&W is nicer, if you can afford it, but from a purely functional standpoint, it really doesn't offer anything more. The -SIX series Rugers are nicer and better handling than the newer GP100 series IMHO.
Back in the 90's I worked on a gun range. I saw significantly more issues with Taurus than any other brand.
As always, YMMV.

4v50 Gary
January 25, 2013, 02:51 AM
Ruger is the toughest of all three.
S&W would be my second choice.

golden
January 25, 2013, 03:12 AM
dogg,

To me, the question is what kind of ammo are you going to shoot. The S&W 19 and especially the 66 were fine when used sparingly with .357 magnum ammo, but did not hold up well to a steady diet.
If you intend to mostly shoot standard velocity .38 Special, then I would say go ahead with the S&W.

I was issued a S&W model 13 (fixed sight, K-frame) in .357 magnum when I graduated the academy. We carried and qualified with the "MILD" 110 grain jhp and out of the 47 guns issued to my class, 11 had problems.
A year later, we were given warnings not to use the 125 grain jhp load for any reason. Some of the model 13's had been fired with it and the forcing cone split.
If you want a S&W, look for a 681 (fixed sight) or the 586/686. I have found the L-frame revolvers to be very well built and you can get a terrific trigger if worked properly. These will shoot .357 magnums all day.

None of these problems seemed to have occured with the RUGER Security Six or Speed Six which were issued to earlier classes.

I have not had any experience with TAURUS .357 magnums, but I liked their 5 shot .38 Specials well enough.

Jim

Deer_Freak
January 25, 2013, 07:04 AM
I have owned revolvers all my life. I have seen several S&W 38 spl revolvers that had cracked or damaged frames. I have seen enough damaged frames that unless I am hanging out with auto racers that can get stuff magnafluxed real cheap I won't buy a used S&W. Between the bad start that taurus had and the poor finish on most taurus pistols I have never bought one. Rugers are very dependable but the cylinder carriage is the weak point on a ruger. So many people flip the cylinder open/closed I have to be able to shoot a ruger double action before I will buy it.

WoodchuckAssassin
January 25, 2013, 08:00 AM
If you're not planning on CC your revolver, then I think the Ruger is an easy choice. I own and LOVE S&W, but there's something about a nice rugged Ruger that has always apealed to me. I've never owned a Taurus, but I hear good things from those who own/shoot them. 15 years ago you couldn't have said that about Taurus, but they've stepped up their game since then.

So in short - I like the Ruger.

bannockburn
January 25, 2013, 08:01 AM
1) Ruger Security Six or Service Six
2) S&W Model 19 or Model 13
3) Taurus Model 66

d-dogg
January 25, 2013, 11:05 AM
To answer a couple of questions:
Since this is a bedside gun, I will practice with the ammunition I will depend upon in case of emergency. Probably either Winchester 125 grain JHP, or Hornady 140 grain FTX.

Pricey for range ammo, but I want to practice with what I will shoot in a SHTF middle of the night scenario.

This will not be concealed carry - kind of large to conceal, and I have a .380 for that mission. We can open carry in VA, but, well, we don't need to have that discussion.

I have expanded the search to include the Ruger Security Six, as it seems there is a lot of sentimental attachment to the Police Service Six thus keeping their prices high.

Now be vewwwwy qwuiet... There's a Service Six and a model 19 hovering at $400 right now.

Water-Man
January 25, 2013, 11:40 AM
Ruger Six or a used GP-100.

d-dogg
January 25, 2013, 11:56 AM
Water-Man, the GP-100 just didn't make the short list due to price. People seem to be wanting gun shop new prices for them.

Water-Man
January 25, 2013, 12:04 PM
I'm currently seeing them for $400.-$450..

premier1
January 25, 2013, 01:09 PM
It would be nice if we all had unlimited funds but certainly that's not too many people I know. First of course S&W is nice but of course their price is getting crazy. Ruger well I think we've all owned one at some point in time.They are certainly good quality bu the've never turned me on,and if their price is close to a S&W I'll take the Smith. I like Taurus especially their revolvers.I work in armed security and carry a model 85S everyday. Does it have the trigger of a Colt certainly not, but double action at 10-15 yards every shots on target and single action it's even better.Of course their price is just tough to beat. In the end however it's your choice.Best of luck.

CajunBass
January 25, 2013, 07:32 PM
I've owned revolvers by all three (plus Colt). I agree with most people in that I'd rate them the same as most, (1) Smith & Wesson (or Colt), (2) Ruger, (3) Taurus. But I wouldn't put Taurus as far behind as most seemingly would. I've owned three, including one Model 66 in .357. It was a pretty decent gun, for not a lot of money. It wasn't a bad looking gun either.

slickracer
January 26, 2013, 09:43 AM
Buy the best and you will seldom be dismayed....S&W all the way.

roaddog28
January 26, 2013, 12:52 PM
To answer a couple of questions:
Since this is a bedside gun, I will practice with the ammunition I will depend upon in case of emergency. Probably either Winchester 125 grain JHP, or Hornady 140 grain FTX.

Pricey for range ammo, but I want to practice with what I will shoot in a SHTF middle of the night scenario.

This will not be concealed carry - kind of large to conceal, and I have a .380 for that mission. We can open carry in VA, but, well, we don't need to have that discussion.

I have expanded the search to include the Ruger Security Six, as it seems there is a lot of sentimental attachment to the Police Service Six thus keeping their prices high.

Now be vewwwwy qwuiet... There's a Service Six and a model 19 hovering at $400 right now.
A suggestion d-dogg. I have found on my Police Service Six that a good practice round is the CCI Blazer 158 gr hollow point. I practice at 10 yards most the time and get good results. As for self defense I use the Buffalo Bore 158 gr LSWCHP 38 +P. Both of these rounds shoot about the same on the range and the Buffalo Bore has a excellent track record. If you get a Police Service Six or a Security Six I believe you will get the same results I do.
Good luck with your decision.
Howard

jeepnik
January 26, 2013, 01:00 PM
Hmm, I want a gun to bet my life on, but I dont' want to spend much on it. Here's a little secret, in this life, you get what you pay for.

Buy the darned Smith and forget about it. Should you or your decendents ever sell it, you'll get the money back. Heck, I consider myself just the temporary custodian of my Smiths, even though a fair number that are older than I am, they will outlast my grandkids with ease.

Will the others work, sure, but will you have the same affinity for them as a nicely turned out Smith?

d-dogg
January 26, 2013, 02:52 PM
Now I have read on a couple of sites, something to the effect of "the model 19 does not like a steady diet of .357".

Can someone please expound on this if they have heard or experienced similar? Seemed to be related to lighter hollow point bullets.

Jaymo
January 26, 2013, 02:55 PM
I've owned Taurus revolvers and semis since 1991, and have never had a single issue/problem with any of them.
I wish I'd never sold two of the three that I actually sold.
One was a 3" 65-.357, the other was a 3" 431-.44 Special.
I miss those greatly.
I don't really miss the blued 85CH that I sold, because I sold it to help pay for a stainless steel 86CH when they came out.
I did miss the wood banana gri[p it had, and was looking for one to put on mine to replace the Uncle Mike's rubber grip. Same length as the banana grip, finger grooved. Good, comfortable grip. Nothing wrong with it. I just missed the banana.
Then, I found an 85CH with the banana grip, that was made a year or two before my other one.
For $175, I couldn't go wrong.

460Kodiak
January 26, 2013, 07:21 PM
S&W, then the Ruger. Taurus wouldn't even be in the running with me. Out of 4 revolvers from them that I've seen, 4 of them have had major problems. That's 100% for me. Crap.

Others have had the exact opposite experience. For my money, I will never buy a Taurus, Rossi, or any other gun made by a company associated with Taurus. JMO

Good Luck

Personally, if it were me, I'd save a bit longer and spring for a brand new GP100 or 686+. Again, JMO.

d-dogg
January 27, 2013, 03:38 PM
S&W 65-3??????

Opinions, Problems? Strengths, Weaknesses?

In the next 15 minutes please.

Jaymo
January 27, 2013, 03:43 PM
The 65s were good guns. I wouldn't walk away from one that was priced right.
The K frames didn't like a steady diet of full power .357 mag ammo, but then again, neither will your wrists/elbows, or wallet.
Odds are, you'll never put enough full house mag loads through it to hurt it.
Plus, you'll have to reload or buy Buffalo Bore to get full power mag ammo. Current production .357 ammo looks to be a good bit milder than it used to be.

CajunBass
January 27, 2013, 03:47 PM
S&W 65-3??????

Opinions, Problems? Strengths, Weaknesses?

In the next 15 minutes please.

Don't know about a -3, but my wife has a 65-5 "Ladysmith" that is a great shooter. I suppose in theory, it has all the same "weaknesses" that any "K" frame Smith & Wesson has with the forcing cone, but you couldn't prove it by me. Aftermarket grips, or a Tylers T-grip help a lot.

http://i21.photobucket.com/albums/b292/CajunBass/handguns/100_0309.jpg

I think the -5 has a shrouded ejector rod, where the -3 has an exposed one, but that's the only difference I can think of.

Snake Plisskin
January 27, 2013, 03:54 PM
Go with the 19-3 best choice, IMO

d-dogg
January 27, 2013, 04:33 PM
Well, his reserve was obviously higher than I would go.

19-3 coming up in a while.

GWARGHOUL
January 27, 2013, 07:34 PM
Taurus carries an outstanding warranty,you might check with the manufacturer but I believe it stays with the firearm regardless of transfer.

It is the lifetime of the gun, regardless of ownership.

I would go for the Taurus, personally. I have a Taurus 608 in my list. I own a 85 stainless. Great gun.

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