Charter Arms 44


August 28, 2013, 10:37 AM
I want a lighter 44 and am thinking of the Charter Arms. Does anyone have real world experience with this one. I know the history and know Carter Arms is not a Ruger or S&W but they are made here and I believe the only under 24oz 44 available made in the US.

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August 28, 2013, 10:50 AM
Mine is one of the old ones. Excellent buy in terms of what you get for what you pay. Definately not a Colt or S&W but costs a LOT less and is actually small and light enough to carry. S&W made a superb L frame a few years back but they're out of production and brutally expensive IF you can find one. My Bulldog isn't particularly fancy but goes bang EVERY time and works perfectly. I consider it an excellent buy for people on a budget or for those who need something light and carryable. Be aware though it has a well deserved reputation for recoil, especially if you insist on using the heavier bullets. Mr. Newtons laws still apply.

Beach Nut
August 28, 2013, 11:05 AM
I have a Charter Arms Bulldog in .44 Special and I love it! My Bulldog has given me no
problems at all, is light enough for comfortable concealed carry and the trigger pull is
surprisingly smooth. During the early part of the last decade, Charter Arms had some
issues with some of the revolvers they were manufacturing but the newer ones are
good to go.

August 28, 2013, 11:47 AM
I like the old S&W 44 L frame but they are as heavy as my 3" N frame, so I am looking for something lighter to carry when I have to be in town.

August 28, 2013, 12:36 PM
Had a recent stainless model. Sold it due to kept short stroking the trigger in DA mode. Not the gun's fault: operator error, just couldn't break the habit. An excellent carry gun in a "real" sd caliber. I think you'll be pleased.

August 28, 2013, 12:36 PM
Nice gun. Load with 200 gr. Speer/Blazer GDHPs.

bigger hammer
August 28, 2013, 12:45 PM
I carried one as a back-up in a Renegade Ankle Holster, for many years. Only needed it once. It worked perfectly.

August 28, 2013, 04:15 PM
I have an older ('70s) charter bulldog as my regular carry.

Works fine.
Mild recoil with Silvertips, very controllable.
Relatively harsh with Black Hills' Keith loads - I wouldn't put a lot of those through it.

Only minor issue: Sometimes the screw that sits on the bottom of the well in which the rod from the cylinder rotates (I'm talking about the end nearer the trigger) can work itself out or in a bit which can lead to difficulty in opening the cylinder. If that happens, adjust it to a point where the operation is easy and set it with some loctite.

August 28, 2013, 04:54 PM
I don't know about the 44's first hand, but I've had several of their 38's both "old" and "new". I've always found them to be a servicable. I'd like to find one of the 44's myself.
August 28, 2013, 05:09 PM
Mine is from the early 1970's. Carry it with Buffalo Bore 200 gr. wadcutters
At 950 fps and 200 gr Blazer Gold Dots for reload.

August 28, 2013, 05:58 PM
I have had a Bulldog Pug in .44spl for 25+ years. It's one of my "won't trade or sell" guns. There is something comforting about a small snubbie with a hole that size in the end of it. It has had ~1000 rounds thru it (mostly lighter handloads) and is still as tight as one could ever expect a revolver to be.

August 28, 2013, 06:42 PM
I have an older .44 bulldog pug... was pretty much shot out by a previous owner, unfortunately...Bought it more as a cheap DIY reblue project than a shooter....thanks to the aluminum barrel shroud and hammer guard, rebluing it darn more hurt the cosmetics more than they helped...
Wish it didn't have enough endshake to hear the cylinder go "clack-clack" when tested.. :(
Nice gun, very light and concealable, wish mine was engineered and built better though

August 28, 2013, 07:18 PM
I think EVERY LEO should carry a Charter Bulldog .44 for his/her backup gun.
I like Pachmayr Compac grips. More concealable than the Grippers, and do a great job of handling recoil

August 28, 2013, 07:19 PM
I have both an older one (blued w/3" barrel) and a new one (stainless w/2.5" barrel).

Love them both, and CCW the stainless one. Great little CCW revolver that packs a wallop.

Here's the new one:

Here's my older one:

August 28, 2013, 07:36 PM
I have the old one from early days . its carried more than shot gun but very accurate with Blazer 200 gr gold dots or Winchester silver tips. Don't try to make a 44 mag out of it and will last you a long time. Recoil isn't all that bad. I rather carry than a 38 snhb.

August 28, 2013, 07:37 PM
I love the look and feel of the original walnut Bulldog grips.
They're great for CC.
Not much fun at the range.

August 28, 2013, 10:09 PM
I want to get one.

August 28, 2013, 10:20 PM
I have the older model, stainless, 3" with Charter Arms rubber grips. Have used the thicker walnut grips and like them, too, but prefer the rubber grips, at least on the Bulldog. Try .44 Russian loads (I reload 190 or 214 gr. SWC). Those are fun and friendly to shoot (but my home/carry load is still the special).

August 29, 2013, 05:27 PM
my factory bobbed hammer SS charter arms is one of my CCW in a inside the pants holster. at 45 feet it shoots to POI with 225gr JHP,s at 800-900 fps, its not pleasant to shoot but sure packs a wallop. eastbank

August 29, 2013, 05:27 PM
I have a newer one and has been accurate and reliable.The DA/SA are very smooth and quite usable. 200gr GoldDots work well.I have no complaints and would like to buy a 74410 Bulldog on Duty.

August 29, 2013, 06:24 PM
Rodinal I don't see it called out on Charter's web site but the 74410 seems to be a DA/SA. Do you know if that is the case?

August 29, 2013, 08:37 PM
When I carry recently I started to eschew the Colt Agent and carry the old 70s Bulldog with Silvertips. It works very well,;) , reloads pretty quick with an HKS and I can just hide the Pachmeyer Compacs with the front pocket in a Mika in Carhart HD canvas pants. :p If I can't wear those I drop down to an S&W 37 in a Mika and feel somewhat under strapped especially in bear country.:neener:

August 30, 2013, 08:31 AM
farm23:"Rodinal I don't see it called out on Charter's web site but the 74410 seems to be a DA/SA. Do you know if that is the case?"

Yes,it is a DA/SA platform. Its patterned just like a Model 38,638 649 etc. I handled one a couple of years ago at SHOT and have been waiting for them to actually start making them. Charter is a little slow at updating their web page.

Working Man
August 30, 2013, 08:49 AM
I have a Charter 2000 Bulldog Pug that I bought about 10 years ago from Acad for under $200. Put around 25 or so rnds of 200 Grn JHP CCI Blazer 44 sp through it with no complaints. As a belly gun of that caliber I figured I did not need anything too fancy for the ammo.

August 30, 2013, 08:55 AM
I sure like mine.

August 30, 2013, 10:23 AM
Mine (Older 3" model) has a real nice trigger in SA and DA, is very accurate, and has been very dependable. I do have to keep a check for the ejector rod getting loose and a couple of screws that like to loosen up. I suppose I could blue Loctite them.

August 30, 2013, 10:31 AM
It is a good idea to check all screws for tightness after ever cleaning. (Not a bad idea with any gun.) I have blue Loctited a few.

August 30, 2013, 07:03 PM
I want a lighter 44 and am thinking of the Charter Arms. Does anyone have real world experience with this one.

If you come across a Rossi model 720 give it a look, it also fits what you are looking for. K-frame size 44 special and very reasonable weight. Great carry gun, 3 inch barrel, stainless finish. Regards.

August 30, 2013, 10:04 PM
Dan-O, I see you have a XS front sight. The new 44's have the front sight as part of the barrel. How or who modified your gun?

August 31, 2013, 06:11 PM
I have a first gen Bulldog with a 3 inch barrel and a bobbed hammer, great little gun light weight and packs a punch (on both ends). Also you may want to look at (now don't laugh od scoff) a Taurus 445UL, this is a 2 inch 44 SPL snub about the size of a S&W K frame with an Airweight frame, at about 15 oz empty its a light weight powerhouse, mine has been totally reliable and accurate' that is if you can find one.... I think the ultimate 44 snub though is the S&W 696 SS L frame 3 inch but she is a heavy little sucker!

August 31, 2013, 06:50 PM
My wife won a Bulldog at an Friends of the NRA banquet a couple of years ago and she loves it. She Won't hardly let me play with it.

August 31, 2013, 10:23 PM
Bought a new Charter Bulldog earlier this year. Locked up after first three rounds and had to open/close cylinder to get it working again. Had to do this several times through 15 rounds. Back to factory for new cylinder.

To shorten the story...over first three months, gun went back to factory three times for new cylinders and problem was never fixed. Dealer refunded my money and sent gun back himself and they installed a fourth cylinder.

Dealer sold it from his shop so don't know if problem was ever fixed.

Sorry it wasn't of better quality because it felt good in my hand and was comfortable to shoot....when it worked. However, it was totally unreliable.

September 1, 2013, 01:39 AM
Dan-O who did your Jewel and sight work? I have tested all of the Factory HP and the best one for mushroom and speed is CCI Blazer 200 gr. gold dot.

September 1, 2013, 05:39 AM
Magnaport did the work on my gun. I had them mini-bob and jewel the hammer, jewel the trigger, and mill off the front sight and replace it with an XS Big Dot.

September 2, 2013, 07:50 AM
Magnaport did the work on my gun. I had them mini-bob and jewel the hammer, jewel the trigger, and mill off the front sight and replace it with an XS Big Dot.
Well, speaking of Mag-Na-Port and Charter Arms Bulldogs, I'm lucky enough to own one of the Mag-Na-Port custom BackPackers from the late '70s. They took the standard blued Bulldog (the only one available at the time), cut the barrel behind the front sight then ported it, bobbed the hammer, did an excellent action job, then hard chromed it. It's pretty much the ultimate "belly gun", mine is number 128 of 250.

September 2, 2013, 12:45 PM
WC145 That's a cool lookin gun also.

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