Top-Break DA-SA


PDA






beag_nut
February 23, 2013, 03:06 PM
Here's my question: Does anyone make a current-production top-break DA-SA revolver, in caliber .38 spl. or larger?
Please notice the DA and the caliber. I don't want an old Russian, either, or an antique Smith.

If you enjoyed reading about "Top-Break DA-SA" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Billy Shears
February 23, 2013, 03:17 PM
I'm not aware of any. It doesn't really make economic sense. With a solid frame, swing-out cylinder, your revolver can handle anything from the hottest magnums to the lightest target loads, so you only have to produce the one frame for your entire line in that caliber. With a top break, there is a definite upper limit to the power of any loads you can put in the gun, and then if you wanted to make any other guns to handle the hotter loads, you'd need to offer a separate frame design.

Having said that, there Russians did make a top break .357 with a polymer frame http://world.guns.ru/handguns/double-action-revolvers/rus/izhmeh-mp-412-e.html called the MP-412, though why they went with a top break I'll never know, since it stands to reason it would have to be made beefier than a solid frame to handle the magnum loads. But you can't get them here. IIRC, Clinton made a deal when he was in the White House that no Russian handguns would be imported into the US.

beag_nut
February 23, 2013, 04:38 PM
There is ONE very real advantage to top-break: automatic ejection. That's why the SA S&W Schofields were popular (somewhat) with the US Cavalry.

Driftwood Johnson
February 23, 2013, 10:07 PM
There is ONE very real advantage to top-break: automatic ejection. That's why the SA S&W Schofields were popular (somewhat) with the US Cavalry.

Howdy

I have a bazillion modern side swing S&W revolvers. I also have a number of old Top Break S&Ws, 32, 38, and 44 caliber. Although you are technically correct that a Top Break is quicker to unload than a Hand Ejector, practically speaking it makes little difference. With practice opening the revolver and ejecting the shells can be accomplished with one smooth motion with a side opening revolver.

The reason the Schofields, and other large Top Breaks were popular in the 1800s was they were much quicker to load and unload than typical Colt pattern Single Action revolvers, which require each chamber to be manually ejected and each chamber to be loaded separately. But that is much different than emptying and loading a side swing revolver.

gscrasher
February 24, 2013, 04:57 PM
Uberti makes a replica:

http://www.ubertireplicas.com/revolver-top.php

Nar
February 24, 2013, 05:33 PM
webly revolvers.

Billy Shears
February 24, 2013, 08:23 PM
Uberti makes a replica:

http://www.ubertireplicas.com/revolver-top.php
The OP said DA/SA. The Schofield was a SA only.

beag_nut
February 25, 2013, 10:02 AM
Thanks for the suggestion, but I'm looking for current-production. Do you know of any replicas of those being made now (the Webley)?

Billy Shears
February 25, 2013, 01:45 PM
I am not aware of any reproductions of the Webley being made. And if one were, I warn you, along with the top break action you crave, you would get the horrendous Webley trigger. I have a Webley Mk. VI in the original .455 caliber. Take it from me, the trigger is awful. Heavy. And this was after I had David Chicoine work on it to make it a little smoother. It's a Webley; it's just the nature of the beast. You can't get a trigger on it that will rival and S&W any more than you can make a Hi Power trigger rival that of a 1911. The trigger geometry and the design of the lockwork just won't permit it. Having shot the Webley, and the Colt and S&W M1917s I've owned, I find it no surprise at all that some British officers during WWI preferred to buy one of the American revolvers. I'm surprised more didn't. National pride I guess.

I'm not sure what you want one for. If it's a range toy, pick up an old Webley or Enfield top break. (Just bear in mind that if you get a Webley that's been converted to .45ACP, you should stick to light, target loads or handloads -- the .45ACP runs at higher pressure than the Webley was ever proofed for. You won't blow the gun up, but prolonged shooting with loads hotter than what it was built for may damage it. Stick to loads at or under what it was proofed for and it will last forever.) If you want one for carry... Driftwood Johnson is right: the speed advantage over a modern hand-ejecting DA revolver with the cylinder on a swing-out crane is negligible. We're talking fractions of a second negligible. And with practice you could erase even that and probably become faster than an average Joe with a top-break. And with the modern revolver, you get better metallurgy, parts availability if something breaks, and far better triggers than you're going to find on something like a Webley. That alone is worth it. I would much, much rather have a revolver that's far easier to shoot, and a tiny fraction of a second slower to reload, than a revolver with beast of a trigger, that's much harder to shoot accurately, just to get maybe a quarter of a second shaved off my reload time.

beag_nut
February 26, 2013, 03:27 PM
Regarding any firearm making sense:
Repro's of New Model Remington percussion revolvers don't.
"Repro's" or fresh new Quigley model Sharps don't.
Repro's of the Liberator also don't.
It may or may not be a matter of being sensible, but some of us hanker for something a little different. My Santa Ana version of the before-mentioned Remington is arguably much smoother and stronger than the original. A newly-made Webley COULD be better than the original. That said, I am not looking for a Webley, but rather a top-break DA/SA mid-caliber revolver. Almost every day I hear or read about something which is little-known and yet in current or near-current production, which surprises me.
I'm just hoping to get lucky, and to maybe hear from someone about a little-known piece which might appeal to me, and meet my wants. This is without doubt the largest gun forum there is, and many view it.

jhvaughan2
February 26, 2013, 04:42 PM
Having said that, there Russians did make a top break .357 with a polymer frame http://world.guns.ru/handguns/double-action-revolvers/rus/izhmeh-mp-412-e.html called the MP-412

Oh great. Something else I now really want that I will not be able to obtain.

Billy Shears
February 26, 2013, 08:21 PM
Regarding any firearm making sense:
Repro's of New Model Remington percussion revolvers don't.
"Repro's" or fresh new Quigley model Sharps don't.
Repro's of the Liberator also don't.
It may or may not be a matter of being sensible, but some of us hanker for something a little different. My Santa Ana version of the before-mentioned Remington is arguably much smoother and stronger than the original. A newly-made Webley COULD be better than the original. That said, I am not looking for a Webley, but rather a top-break DA/SA mid-caliber revolver. Almost every day I hear or read about something which is little-known and yet in current or near-current production, which surprises me.
I'm just hoping to get lucky, and to maybe hear from someone about a little-known piece which might appeal to me, and meet my wants. This is without doubt the largest gun forum there is, and many view it.
Oh you misunderstand me. If what you want is another gun to shoot for fun, there's no need for anything to be sensible about it. By that reckoning, the Webley I still have isn't a "sensible" gun (not the best shooter, in an obsolete caliber, certainly not the best looking gun out there, etc.), but I still like it, and have no intention of selling it. We don't need a "sensible" reason for owning a range toy. And though I wouldn't choose it for self defense, if I had to grab it in a hurry because I didn't have anything else, I wouldn't feel sorry for myself.

But your posts seemed to indicate a strong desire to have one for a practical, as opposed to a fun reason. And my response was simply to point it that, as far as I am aware, no such revolvers are now in production (I think even that Russian one is out of production -- there's no domestic market in Russia for handguns like that, civilians there not being allowed to own them, and I think the company was counting on US sales, before the Clinton/Yeltsin agreement not to allow Russian handguns into the US), and this isn't really any great loss, as a modern hand-ejecting, solid-frame revolver can really do everything you'd want such a top break for just as well.

If you still just want one as a fun gun, go ahead and pick up a Webley Mk. VI that's been converted to .45ACP. They're still available fairly cheap, and that's as close as you're going to get to what you want I think. I think you can shoot it to your hearts content with factory ammo as long as you stick to lighter target loads like these: http://www.midwayusa.com/product/241451/federal-premium-personal-defense-reduced-recoil-ammunition-45-acp-165-grain-hydra-shok-jacketed-hollow-point-box-of-20 (Those are out of stock, but that's because of the current buying frenzy; no one has any ammo right now.) Basically the kind of target loads the Colt Gold Cup was designed around are your best bet in factory ammo.

And you can always get a reloading kit and reload your own. You'd want to do that for best results with a .45ACP converted Webley in any case, as the bore is slightly larger than a .45ACP, so standard .45ACP factory ammo might not give you the best accuracy, though you'd likely not notice at short ranges. Cast bullets of at least .454, instead of .451 or .452 bullets commonly used for .45ACP will give you better accuracy.

Jim K
February 28, 2013, 10:32 PM
There are two basic problems with top break revolvers. The first is the latch. No matter how well made or how closely fitted, it will eventually peen and work loose. (I know some folks say that if all the parts are made very large and extremely hard that won't happen. But the cost will be high.)

The second problem is the ejector which everyone claims is the big advantage in a top break. But a few minutes study shows that the normal ejection mechanism won't handle a cartridge as long as the .38 Special, let alone the .357. That is one of the reasons gun makers went to the solid frame hand ejector in the first place. (Yes, I know there have been a few top break revolvers that had a manually operated ejector rod, but they were no faster than a side swing revolver.)

Jim

If you enjoyed reading about "Top-Break DA-SA" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!