S & W Governor opinions


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351 WINCHESTER
April 4, 2013, 05:12 PM
I handled one at my lgs last week. I like the idea of being able to shoot shotgun and pistol ammo, but would like feedback as to accuracy with different loads and any other feedback positive or negative.

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SullyVols
April 4, 2013, 07:28 PM
It's my understanding that the .410 shotgun is very weak and isn't very suitable for self defense. The ranges I've been to won't let you shoot shot. I've also heard complaints about the way the barrel is assembled on the governor and other lightweight S&W guns. The Taurus Raging Judge (.454 Casull) might be a better choice for the money if you really want one. Granted it's much heavier and a Taurus.

huntershooter
April 4, 2013, 07:55 PM
I see you have 3K+ posts; guess I wonder if this is a serious question.

If you want to shoot a .45 Colt cartridge the "Governor" would be my last choice in a S&W revolver.
Perhaps the perceived "advantage" of having three buckshot pellets in a SD scenario helps psychologically.
The lousy penetration of .410 buckshot (and sub-par accuracy) in no way compares to a 250 gr.+-, .45 Colt bullet.
I guess I have trouble understanding the appeal of, or mindset of whomever would consider purchasing this revolver.

My thinking is: If one feels an "edge" with this revolver, get more practice or invest in some shooting lessons. If you want to shoot .410 cartridges-get a .410 shotgun.

7.62 Solution
April 4, 2013, 08:02 PM
I have owned a governor for about a year and really enjoy shooting it. I use it primarily for plinking with friends at about 15 yds loaded with low power .45 acp in moon clips. I bought it for 2 reasons 1 because of its versatility in ammo choices and I just plain wanted one. Accuracy is acceptable for me (its not a target pistol) but I can hit metal targets often enough to stay interested. Fit and finish is good although I am starting to notice some signs of use in the black finish on the aluminum frame. I have put a few .410 #8s through it into a sheet of cardboard the spread as one would guess is pretty wide. But for getting after rodents in the barn when you don't want new holes in the barn walls it would be a good choice. I didn't buy it for self defense so I really don't have an opinion on that.

I am happy with the pistol.

bikemutt
April 4, 2013, 08:40 PM
I like mine just fine, it's my nightstand gun.

I have fired all three projectiles from it and found it to be more accurate than I expected, particularly with PDX .410. It also balanced better than I thought it would be and manages recoil well.

I prefer it to the Taurus Judge which one of my woods buddies has, so does he.

It's pretty obvious if you want to only shoot one of the payloads you should buy a gun that's optimized for that payload. It's strong suite is versatility; with versatility comes compromise.

It packs nice in the woods too where it may be loaded up with some potent bullets for defense and quickly re-loaded in order to harvest a grouse for dinner without turning the poor creature into a pile of feathers.

It's one of the few guns I have that can honestly say I would replace it with the same gun if my wife sold it, or it otherwise came to be no longer in my possession.

JFrame
April 5, 2013, 11:58 AM
351 WINCHESTER:

Here are some numbers compiled for the Governor by Wiley Clapp (American Rifleman, March 2012):

.410 (Accuracy -- 5 yards)

Federal 2 1/2" 000 (4) buckshot: 4" ring (19 balls), 8" (1 ball), 12" (0 balls)

Remington 2 1/2" 000 (4) buckshot: 4" ring (6 balls), 8" (9 balls), 12" (5 balls)

Winchester 2 1/2" Defense Discs (3) BB shot (12): 4" ring (3/15), 8" (12/0), 12" (18/0)

.410 (Velocity/Energy -- 5 yards)

Federal 2 1/2" 000 (4) Buckshot: 1,198 fps, 930 ft/lbs.

Remington 2 1/2" 000 (4) Buckshot: 1,212 fps, 952 ft/lbs.

Winchester 2 1/2" Defense Discs (3) BB shot (12): 788 fps, 408 ft/lbs.

.45 ACP (Accuracy -- 25 yards, average group size)

Federal No. GMA45A 230-gr. Match FMJ -- 3.20"
Black Hills 230-gr. JHP -- 3.06"

.45 ACP (Velocity/Energy -- 12')

Federal No. GMA45A 230-gr. Match FMJ -- 739 fps, 279 ft/lbs.
Black Hills 230-gr. JHP -- 832 fps, 354 ft/lbs.

.45 Colt (Accuracy -- 25 yards, average group size)

Speer No. 23984 250-gr. Gold Dot JHP -- 4.08"
Black Hills Cowboy 250-gr. RNFP -- 4.33"

.45 Colt (Velocity/Energy -- 12')

Speer No. 23984 250-gr. Gold Dot JHP -- 877 fps, 427 ft/lbs.
Black Hills Cowboy 250-gr. RNFP -- 707 fps, 277 ft/lbs.


I love the way the Governor handles. As with Bikemutt, it has become one of my nightstand pieces.


.

buckhorn_cortez
April 5, 2013, 01:04 PM
I like the idea of being able to shoot shotgun and pistol ammo...

I'm curious as to why you're interested in shooting a small shotgun shell out a pistol. Would you elaborate on why you think this is useful, and if so, what is the use?

bikemutt
April 5, 2013, 01:34 PM
I'm curious as to why you're interested in shooting a small shotgun shell out a pistol. Would you elaborate on why you think this is useful, and if so, what is the use?
As a close quarters defensive gun for someone who lives in a very densely populated neighborhood, a shotshell has some merit. That it can be deployed from a handgun form factor also has merit. Of course none of that matters if the result is a failure to defend, however I wouldn't offer to be a test target for 4 rounds of PDX .410 at close range, and for sure not the 2 additional rounds of .45ACP.

dacavasi
April 5, 2013, 03:35 PM
IMHO this type of gun's strongest suite is in snake/small critter defense, using appropriately-sized shotshells. I think that 'flexibility' between 45LC and .410 is a questionable advantage for this kind of revolver. IIRC, these are smoothbores.

JFrame
April 5, 2013, 03:56 PM
IMHO this type of gun's strongest suite is in snake/small critter defense, using appropriately-sized shotshells. I think that 'flexibility' between 45LC and .410 is a questionable advantage for this kind of revolver. IIRC, these are smoothbores.

I'm not sure if I understood you right, but the Governor is definitely not a smoothbore. That would put it under NFA restrictions.

The rifling in the Governor imparts some spiraling spin to the shot pattern as it comes out, although within 5 yards (or possibly a little farther) it's not a huge factor.


.

cfullgraf
April 5, 2013, 04:25 PM
I handled one at my lgs last week. I like the idea of being able to shoot shotgun and pistol ammo, but would like feedback as to accuracy with different loads and any other feedback positive or negative.

I do not have one but have been considering it. I saw a TV show on the Taurus Judge where they were shooting skeet with the Judge. That would be an interesting exercise. At times, I like to humble myself at skeet with a 410 shotgun, the revolver would be an even greater humbling experience.:)

There are some 410 shelf defense shells on the market that look to be effective at short ranges.

For me, the main drawback has been the revolver's size whether S&W or Taurus.

Maybe someday I will invest.

Paladin7
April 5, 2013, 05:02 PM
So, my friend has the S&W Governor and I've handled it, shot it, evaluated it, etc.

Here's what I think...

Pro's
- It holds 6 rounds and you can shoot 45 ACP with moonclips (which are provided with the gun) - I don't believe the Taurus has these options...
- Recoil when shooting 45 ACP is surprisingly light (makes an odd sound as well)

Con's
- Size and balance given the long cylinder - "awkward to handle" is the best way I can describe it
- Moonclips are clunky to work with in this gun. The supplied moonclips bend easily making it very hard to charge into and extract from the cylinders when they do
- .410 is all over the place in this gun, accuracy is only acceptable at very close range and the .410, even in the defensive loadings, are just not that impressive, vs 45 Colt or esp. 45 ACP defensive loads
- Extraction of the .410 in a defensive scenario is lousy. The .410 shells tend to swell in the cylinder after firing and are slow to smack out, vs more traditional brass

Bottom Line: I just don't understand the purpose of this gun outside of a fun option and it is definitely a fun gun.

NO WAY would I rely on one for serious social purposes, when there are better options out there. For fun, hey, why not...

JFrame
April 5, 2013, 05:49 PM
So, my friend has the S&W Governor and I've handled it, shot it, evaluated it, etc.

Here's what I think...

Pro's
- It holds 6 rounds and you can shoot 45 ACP with moonclips (which are provided with the gun) - I don't believe the Taurus has these options...
- Recoil when shooting 45 ACP is surprisingly light (makes an odd sound as well)

Con's
- Size and balance given the long cylinder - "awkward to handle" is the best way I can describe it
- Moonclips are clunky to work with in this gun. The supplied moonclips bend easily making it very hard to charge into and extract from the cylinders when they do
- .410 is all over the place in this gun, accuracy is only acceptable at very close range and the .410, even in the defensive loadings, are just not that impressive, vs 45 Colt or esp. 45 ACP defensive loads
- Extraction of the .410 in a defensive scenario is lousy. The .410 shells tend to swell in the cylinder after firing and are slow to smack out, vs more traditional brass

Bottom Line: I just don't understand the purpose of this gun outside of a fun option and it is definitely a fun gun.

NO WAY would I rely on one for serious social purposes, when there are better options out there. For fun, hey, why not...

Understanding that subjective impressions are exactly that, allow me to respond in kind...

Size and balance: I like it -- what can I say. It balances nicely for me.

Moon clips: I'm not sure where the clunkiness comes in. All the ones I've fired have inserted and extracted fine. There were two moon clips supplied with the Governor. I bought 55 more for perhaps 2 bucks each, including Wilson Combats -- and both the generics and Wilsons have worked fine. I'm really not seeing what the issue is here.

.410 all over the place: At five yards, my 000 buck was printing in 3 1/2" groups or thereabouts -- just about what Wiley Clapp's shooting tests showed him. I can't characterize "all over the place," but for within a decent-sized room, that seems okay.

.410 extraction issue: I can't really address that, because I haven't fired enough .410's in my Governor to cause an extraction problem.

Not to be presumptuous, but is it possible that your friend has abused his moon clips, and otherwise not kept his Governor in very clean working condition? Also as far as the moon clips -- for the price, they seem pretty disposable if they go "out of true" for whatever reason.

Anyway, I just wanted to respond because I wanted the OP to have the full spectrum of perceptions and observations. :)


.

Stainz
April 5, 2013, 06:35 PM
I first saw the Governor in early June 2011. I had shot a Taurus Judge revolver and just wasn't impressed - nasty trigger and awful grip. What pushed the Governor 'over the top' was the six shot .45 ACP use. I keep 240+ moonclips loaded with 230gr FMJ ball homebrews - but only have a 4" 625JM - I need another .45 ACP revolver - for a night stand gun. The 325 Night Guard was an immediate thought - until the Governor. They share the six rounds moonclipped, Tritium Night Sight front/fixed rear sights, SS barrel & cylinder, and Al/Sc frame. The Governor is longer - by 7/8"; heavier, too - by 1.8 oz. Price was the killer - the best price locally was $889 for the 325NG, while the Governor was $579. Sadly, the 325NG was soon no longer a choice - S&W dropped the NG series. I bought the Governor on impulse the first day I saw it!

Of course, .45 Colt usage is a plus - great self defense round whether in the guise of a 250gr Gold Dot or 255 gr LSWC. I have a pair of 625 Mountain Guns in .45 Colt - practically target guns in comparison. Great woods protection - a bit heavy for urban carry - and, if used in a SD situation, a bit too nice to have a case number engraved on it as evidence. S&W still makes Governors -.45 Colt MG's are costly! It will also chamber and fire .45 GAP, if you have any, as well as .45 'short' Colts - or Schofields - and 2.5" .410 shotshells.

Mine shoots close enough from 7-12 yd to be considered coincident POA/POI with 230gr FMJ ball ammo, 250gr Speer Gold Dots(Speer loads or homebrews over 5.7gr Titegroup), and 255gr LSWC over 5.7gr Titegroup. Six shot groups were <3" at 12yd - acceptable for self defense. The fine shot shell swirled. The Win PDX1 left four large holes (Three balls and the plastic sabot.) and 10 or 11 BB holes, the missing BB's maybe going through the big holes - or off the plate. The target was a large paper disposable dinner plate at 3-7yd. The swirled bird shot was on a reversed large bg target - barely - at 7yd.

The nice thing about our 'free' society is that my rationales for buying anything, the Governor included, are not dependent on the feelings or opinions of others. To me, the Governor checks boxes which include home defense, woods carry, and fun - and that was good enough for me. As I approach my sixty-fifth birthday all too fast, the Governor is my first and only 'shotgun' - a milestone of sorts.

Stainz

PS Moonclips in blued steel, as supplied by S&W, were $35/100 delivered from Ranch Products.

bikemutt
April 5, 2013, 07:48 PM
Maybe a few .410 buckshot survivors could chime in :)

Vern Humphrey
April 5, 2013, 08:13 PM
The Smith and Wesson Governor would be a great revolver if they shortened the cylinder about an inch and a half and throated it properly for .45 Colt.

WardenWolf
April 6, 2013, 02:09 AM
To give you an idea, .410 slugs operating out of full-length barrels have less energy than a normal .45 Colt bullet. Shotguns operate at much lower pressures than both pistols and rifles. As such, they are extremely inefficient out of a pistol-length barrel, and a pistol-caliber shotshell can actually be superior because they can operate at pistol-level pressures.

This is why I always tell people that the Judge, Governor, etc. are all poor choices. If you're going for snake defense you're better off with a pistol shotshell, and if you're going for self-defense, .410 pellets out of that short barrel won't even give .22LR a run for its money in effectiveness. And, on top of this, you're sacrificing .45 Colt accuracy to do it. You wind up with a gun that is very heavy and bulky, expensive, and inferior in performance.

farm23
April 6, 2013, 09:42 AM
Jframe thanks for the data. I was surprised and pleased at the velocity of the 410 buckshot. I do not need another weapon but I would like to get a Governor and a Bond Arms derringer just because I want one. A friend has the Governor and it is a blast to shoot [you can actually break hand thrown clay pigeons with fair regularly].

Vern Humphrey
April 6, 2013, 10:33 AM
+1 Warden Wolf. I couldn't have put it better myself.

Driftwood Johnson
April 6, 2013, 10:45 AM
Howdy

My club raffled one of these off last year. I spent $25 on some tickets. I would not pay any more than that, I think it is one of the dumbest guns I have ever seen. You asked for opinions.

AABEN
April 6, 2013, 11:34 AM
I would take the governor over the judge be caws it a six 6 shot the Judge is a 5 shot! It is a very good home gun in the dark you do not have to be dead on when shooting the intruder. You can shoot deer slugs if you want.

Vern Humphrey
April 6, 2013, 11:43 AM
Well, you do have to be dead on -- you won't get a six foot spread from 3 or four buckshot, you know. And as for a "deer slug" -- the slug from a .410 is about as powerful as a .32 ACP. Why would you use something like that when you could use .45 Colt?

JFrame
April 6, 2013, 11:57 AM
Jframe thanks for the data. I was surprised and pleased at the velocity of the 410 buckshot. I do not need another weapon but I would like to get a Governor and a Bond Arms derringer just because I want one. A friend has the Governor and it is a blast to shoot [you can actually break hand thrown clay pigeons with fair regularly].

You're welcome, Farm23 -- as you say, they really are a blast to shoot!

Enjoy...! :)


.

bikemutt
April 6, 2013, 07:38 PM
the slug from a .410 is about as powerful as a .32 ACP. Why would you use something like that when you could use .45 Colt?

Maybe because that's all he has laying around when the bell tolls, at least he can use it.

Vern Humphrey
April 6, 2013, 07:54 PM
Maybe because that's all he has laying around when the bell tolls, at least he can use it.
As I have said before, most disasters happen because people plan to have disasters.

If all you have laying around when the bell tolls is a .410 slug load, it's because you planned to have a .410 slug load. You'd be better off to plan to have something more effective.

bikemutt
April 6, 2013, 07:59 PM
As I have said before, most disasters happen because people plan to have disasters.

If all you have laying around when the bell tolls is a .410 slug load, it's because you planned to have a .410 slug load. You'd be better off to plan to have something more effective.
Sure, planning makes sense. As long as planners realize why Plan B came into our lexicon.

Vern Humphrey
April 6, 2013, 08:11 PM
Why would any plan, from A to Z, include you being stuck with only a .410 slug when the chips are down?

bikemutt
April 6, 2013, 08:39 PM
Maybe it's the outcome the person never planned on. I think it's great to plan, I do that myself, but I've noticed that sometimes it doesn't go down according to plan(s). I suppose that could be the result of poor planning but sometimes stuff happens and you have to play the hand that's been dealt. Is a .410 slug better than nothing, who knows?

As an aside though, I agree that counting on a round with sub-optimal terminal ballistics is not a good idea. But if it's all ya got at the time, may as well go out fighting like heck with it.

Vern Humphrey
April 6, 2013, 08:44 PM
The "outcome" we're talking about is what you have with you when you need it. If you plan to have only a darning needle when the chips are down, that's what you'll have.

bikemutt
April 6, 2013, 09:02 PM
Well, we are only talking about the Governor, it's just one arrow in the quiver for me personally. Certainly if it's a person's sole defensive weapon they should avail themselves of the best ordnance available and not plan on using what's left over from last years hunting season.

Using good quality, purpose-built handgun .410s, .45ACP or .45 Colt, or all three, in a Governor, within practical distances does fall on the chart of choices IMO. As with all defensive choices, practice is imperative. Keeping it simple is crucial.

Stainz
April 7, 2013, 11:49 AM
WardenWolf,

You said the Governor was 'heavy' and 'bulky'. Have you physically seen or touched one? The only 'lighter' and 'shorter' OAL S&W .45 Colt chambered revolver S&W ever made was the 2005 PC Shop 625-11 with it's 1.88" barrel, so short they had to put (.45 CLT) on it - in two lines. Still, with Eagle boot grips it weighed some 4+ oz less than the Governor's 29.6 oz. Both cylinders are the same OD. The 625-11 started at over a kilobuck - and went up since, as only 103 were reportedly made. I feel that, despite the extra freebore of the Governor's long cylinder, the 2.75" barrel should eek out a bit better accuracy and velocity from a .45 Colt load when compared with the 1.88" barrel on the 625-11 - the same goes when comparing the .45 ACP version of the PC snubbie - the 625-10, despite it's 2.1" barrel (Shorter cylinder!) - to the Governor.

To show how huge a Governor really is/isn't, here is mine - sporting admittedly huge .500 Magnum Hogue grips - with my 642 - an Airweight J-frame that weighs over half as much as the Governor:

http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u307/Stainz_2007/006.jpg

I maintain that, as a viable nightstand protector in .45 ACP & .45 Colt, it is nearly ideal. Additionally, for midnite attacks by angry birds, it also holds .410 birdshot.

Stainz

PS I'll bet I am pretty much 'average' in my .410 usage, having bought several boxes of such the first two weeks - none in the last 21+ months - and I still have ~half of what I had bought! I maintain that most also see .410 usage as a fad - and the .45 ACP/Colt capability as primary.

WardenWolf
April 7, 2013, 03:30 PM
Stainz, you're still dealing with a gun that's heavier than it would need to be to shoot .45 Colt, and sacrifices barrel length to stay in that same overall length.

Stainz
April 7, 2013, 06:05 PM
WardenWolf,

I believe you are saying that to chamber .45 Colts and 'clipped .45 ACP's, an N-frame OAL .45 Colt-ish cylinder in a shorter frame opening would be all that was needed. This has been done, albeit to a shorter cylinder, in the 325NG in .45 ACP, as I mentioned in my first post. If you'll recall the 325NG and Governor shared many construction attributes, Al/Sc frame, SS barrel & cylinder, Tritium Night Sight front/fixed rear sight, etc. Again - the OAL difference is 7/8" and the weight difference is 1.8 oz (It would be less with a 325NG cylindered for .45 Colt!). "Heavier" than it needs to be? By what, <6%?The short barrel is by design.

Of course demand for a .45 ACP 325NG wouldn't support a .45 Colt variant, that's for sure. The whole NG line fizzled, anyway. Add the 2.5" .410 capability and you can ride the Taurus Judge's coat tails - and get some dyed-in-the-wool S&W-types, me included, 'out of the closet' - and buy a Governor. Try to handle one before you totally write it off - or not. You are entitled to your opinion, whether based on facts, your physical inspection, etc, or not.

Stainz

Vern Humphrey
April 7, 2013, 06:29 PM
Maybe it's the outcome the person never planned on.
When a person buys a .25 ACP pistol for self-defense, that person plans to use that gun for self-defense. When a person buys a .410 revolver for self defense, that person plans to use that gun for self-defense. In each case, purchasing the weapon is an act in furtherance of the plan.

Now, if a person plans to have a 12 gauge pump at home for home defense, and to carry a .357 or .45 ACP, that person has planned to use those guns.

JFrame
April 7, 2013, 06:52 PM
No doubt pretty much everyone on this thread has his mind made up on the validity of the Governor (or the lack thereof). But for those who are just seeking more information, I wanted to post some additional comparative data.

Here is a comparative shot of the Governor, a Detonics Mk VI "chopped" .45, and a S&W Model 65 .357 (3" bbl), to give some perspective of dimensions:

http://i737.photobucket.com/albums/xx12/Dennva/3guncomp_edited_zpsc5552640.jpg

According to my postal scale, following are the respective weights:

Governor -- 1 lb., 13.7 oz.
Detonics Mk VI -- 1 lb., 13.9 oz.
Model 65 -- 2 lb., 2.4 oz.

Of course, this is not intended to be a "fair" weight comparison, because the two latter guns are stainless steel, and the Gov is comprised of exotic metals. I just wanted to give prospective info-gatherers some additional baseline in drawing conclusions.

.

bikemutt
April 7, 2013, 11:05 PM
When a person buys a .25 ACP pistol for self-defense, that person plans to use that gun for self-defense. When a person buys a .410 revolver for self defense, that person plans to use that gun for self-defense. In each case, purchasing the weapon is an act in furtherance of the plan.

Now, if a person plans to have a 12 gauge pump at home for home defense, and to carry a .357 or .45 ACP, that person has planned to use those guns.
Huh?

It's clear to me you don't believe the Gov is a good choice for SD, and I respect your opinion. I believe otherwise, within the constraints I've already outlined.

We can agree to disagree on this one.

Dave T
April 8, 2013, 02:02 PM
S & W Governor opinions

OK, since you asked.

They set a new standard for S&W in terms of "ugly"!

They (and the Judge) prove PT Barnum was right.

Remember, you asked...
Dave

JFrame
April 8, 2013, 02:23 PM
OK, since you asked.

They set a new standard for S&W in terms of "ugly"!


I get what you're saying -- but I have come to view the Governor as "ungainly" -- kind of like Rick Deckard's gun in "Blade Runner," with a weird charm all its own... http://www.kolobok.us/smiles/big_standart/biggrin.gif

http://i737.photobucket.com/albums/xx12/Dennva/bladerunner_zps1729c82d.jpg


.

460Kodiak
April 8, 2013, 07:59 PM
Lame velocity with the .410's. Lame accuracy with the .45's. If you really do want a .410 revolver though, definately go with the Smith over a Taurus.

That being said, I'm not going to stand in line to get shot with one. I'm sure it would still deter an attacker.

Paladin7
April 9, 2013, 11:39 AM
The problem we found was that the moon clips supplied with the Governor are a bit flimsy and did go out of round after a few firings and manipulations. Might have been a bad batch...not sure.

The .410's we shot were all at longer range and accuracy was not good. Closer range will be better obviously, but I just don't see the need when 45 ACP or 45 Colt would be the better defensive options.

Also, the Governor we shot was new right out of the box....safety checked and oiled...

Hope that helps to clarify...

tinygnat219
April 9, 2013, 11:55 AM
This is in response to J-Frame's post:

Understanding that subjective impressions are exactly that, allow me to respond in kind...
Exactly, which is what I enjoy about the tone of your post. I think overall, it hits the nail on the head.

Size and balance: I like it -- what can I say. It balances nicely for me.
I have to agree here. It balances quite nicely and makes the .410 shotshells really feel like nothing much at all in terms of felt recoil.

Moon clips: I'm not sure where the clunkiness comes in. All the ones I've fired have inserted and extracted fine. There were two moon clips supplied with the Governor. I bought 55 more for perhaps 2 bucks each, including Wilson Combats -- and both the generics and Wilsons have worked fine. I'm really not seeing what the issue is here.
Expect the Anti-Moon clip crowd to come out and say that they don't work, bend easily, blah blah. I figured if they worked in combat conditions for WWI and WWII, they're good enough for me. Still, I'd look into a speedloader for .45 Colt. The Rimmed cartridges really do wonders and they do work.

.410 all over the place: At five yards, my 000 buck was printing in 3 1/2" groups or thereabouts -- just about what Wiley Clapp's shooting tests showed him. I can't characterize "all over the place," but for within a decent-sized room, that seems okay.
I'm still not convinced I'd use anything other than #6 shot in this for outdoor snake use, but I haven't really patterned the .410 Shot loads either.

.410 extraction issue: I can't really address that, because I haven't fired enough .410's in my Governor to cause an extraction problem.
I've had problems with extracting loads meant for shotguns and not the loads designed for the Governor / Judge.


Anyway, I just wanted to respond because I wanted the OP to have the full spectrum of perceptions and observations.

Like I said in the beginning, I think your post was well reasoned and not presumptuous. Thanks!

Stainz
April 9, 2013, 01:56 PM
Paladin7,

The six slot moonclips S&W sources, like the ones Brownells, etc, source, came from Ranch Products. They are the same ones used by 25's and 625's. I don't know if they still include the two-slot 'one third' moonclips as mine, bought new 6/11, included. The thickness of the 'clips affects the headspace, ie, they are all a given thickness. The cartridges are meant to be turned or twisted as they are pushed into the slots. Removal is easiest with a 'demooning tool', and I prefer the nutdriver-style available from Brownell's, etc, for <$18. It will hold six empties in it's tube, permitting faster reloads - just have a bag/box to dump the empties in. I've found that Remington & Starline brass seems to load more easily than other brands. I reload, so I ordered 1,000 Starline .45 ACPs years ago (~$130 delivered then - not much more now - just a long wait for stock!). Revolver brass doesn't get scratched up by extractor/ejectors, so it stays nicer longer. As I said, I keep ~240 moonclips loaded, mostly ball ammo but some with 255gr LSWC as a revolver doesn't care what shape your bullets take. The last Ranch Products moonclips - blued steel - I bought were $35/100 - they are probably a bit more now. Nice folks.

I'll grant you, the Governor won't win a beauty contest. The trigger is pretty stout - apparently, #209 shotgun primers take more strike energy than LP CF primers. One range denizen summed it this way, after trying my example's stock trigger; "I didn't know S&W made a Sigma Revolver!". While it's not a target gun, it's accuracy is acceptable, as my sub 3" groups at 12yd were from a standing two hand hold - ie, not rested on/against anything. It's Tritium Night Site does not win points with me - my mature eyes find it, like my 60 Pro and 632 Pro similar sights, requires complete darkness to be seen, making it difficult to see your target. I prefer the f.o. 'HiViz' sights.

Stainz

tinygnat219
April 9, 2013, 02:09 PM
One other thing to consider for those that are proponents of the 325 NG series of .45 ACP revolvers. They are nice, they are functional, but the Governor is made from the same material is 250-300 less AND can take .45 Colt. Just something to remember.

JFrame
April 9, 2013, 03:25 PM
Still, I'd look into a speedloader for .45 Colt. The Rimmed cartridges really do wonders and they do work.

Tinygnat219 -- thanks back to you for your comments and suggestions!

That's a good idea about speedloaders for the .45 Colt. It provides yet another option -- and the Gov seems to be all about options. :)

I'm still not convinced I'd use anything other than #6 shot in this for outdoor snake use, but I haven't really patterned the .410 Shot loads either.

I agree that as a snake gun, I'd use smaller shot.

I've had problems with extracting loads meant for shotguns and not the loads designed for the Governor / Judge.

Good to know...!

.

Paladin7
April 10, 2013, 05:09 PM
Stainz,

Agree with you and like your approach to the moonclips...

If I was relying on the Governor for serious social work, I would go 45ACP with good brass that works well with the moonclips of choice and moonclips that are true/flat, or 45 Colt with a speed loader (assuming they make them in 45 Colt)....

Personally, I believe there are way better options for serious work than these revolvers...

Dain Bramage
April 11, 2013, 02:33 PM
To give you an idea, .410 slugs operating out of full-length barrels have less energy than a normal .45 Colt bullet. Shotguns operate at much lower pressures than both pistols and rifles. As such, they are extremely inefficient out of a pistol-length barrel, and a pistol-caliber shotshell can actually be superior because they can operate at pistol-level pressures

I don't know about slugs, but the buckshot data cited by JFrame seems to have it all over .45 Colt. The values are from an American Rifleman story on the Governor, and should be an apples to apples comparison. Don't forget, the immense popularity of these guns has the manufacturers loading .410 for pistol-length barrels.

.410 (Velocity/Energy -- 5 yards)

Federal 2 1/2" 000 (4) Buckshot: 1,198 fps, 930 ft/lbs.

Remington 2 1/2" 000 (4) Buckshot: 1,212 fps, 952 ft/lbs.

Winchester 2 1/2" Defense Discs (3) BB shot (12): 788 fps, 408 ft/lbs.

45 Colt (Velocity/Energy -- 12')

Speer No. 23984 250-gr. Gold Dot JHP -- 877 fps, 427 ft/lbs.
Black Hills Cowboy 250-gr. RNFP -- 707 fps, 277 ft/lbs

Stainz
April 11, 2013, 06:06 PM
The HKS #25-5 works great with the .45 Colts and a 625MG in .45 Colt as well as the Governor. Stay away from the HKS #25 - it's rim securing tines fit the thick rimmed .45 Auto Rims. I keep two 25-5's loaded with Speer 250gr GDJHPs in my desk for a MG or Governor - whichever one I grab first.

Stainz

HiVel1
April 11, 2013, 07:52 PM
I have a Gov. and like it -use it at times as a traveling snake and varmit gun loaded with shot shells and a couple of 45 ACP for when we go deer hunting, fishing or whatever out in the wilds of LA. (Lower Alabama).I have a nice belt holster that works well from S&W. Fun gun.

I also have a 10mm NG which is an "even better "gun than the Gov IMHO. It is light , easy to shoot, very accurate and versatile shooting all manner of 10mm loads and also all sorts of 40 S&W loads,PLUS it shoots the 40 cal pistol shot shells which are the most effective of all the shot shells made by CCI and rival the 410 in effectiveness-at leastas far as I can tell. Have not shot any humans with it yet. There is always the 2 terrible 10's lurking in the moons.
I just bought a small truckload of those clips from Brownells on sale-now I need to fill them up for my two tens- the 6 1/4" and the 310NG. These are awesome revolvers. At least I like them and shoot them very well.

I had a Snake charmer in 45/410 and bought a 10mm barrel for it-I used the 40 cal shot loads in that gun -killed a black widow spider with it( don't laugh)- also, the lighter 10mm or 40 cal loads were fun and good in accuracy and power as well. I wanted more ammo in my gun so traded it off after I got the Gov.

There are as many solutions to these questions as there are people. Enjoy your guns. Have fun and be safe!
PS: StarFirearms.com makes really slick speedloaders for the 410 shells for the Gov as well as 45 Colt speedloaders and range blocks. Nice stuff.

Stainz
April 11, 2013, 08:01 PM
HiVel1,

Is that '5starfirearms.com', the folks who make the great milled Aluminum loading block and speedloaders for the x8 627's? They are great - used one out at the FOP range today while awaiting the bad weather today.

Stainz

HiVel1
April 12, 2013, 09:16 AM
I think I left part of the address off my post on speedloaders -you are correct Stainz-andthey do make really neat stuff......starts with a 5!!!

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