Cutting down revolver barrel


Onward Allusion
May 15, 2014, 01:41 PM
Is it feasible to do the following?

Take a Taurus 608 (blued or SS - doesn't matter), and chop the barrel to 2 inches and have it re-crowned with a new front sight installed. The reason I am thinking about this route is that a new S&W 327's are impossible to buy for under $1,000.

A new Taurus 608 will run right around $500. How much would a decent 'smith charge for something like the work described above?

Please Please Please don't turn this into a Taurus debate. I have had a boat load of Taurus revolvers through the years and never had issues so *I* am willing to bet my life on a Taurus revolver.

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May 15, 2014, 01:57 PM
Don't see why you couldnt do it. No idea on price

May 15, 2014, 02:14 PM
You'll have to find somebody semi-local for it to be economically viable. Last time I shipped a handgun, which was just a couple months ago, it was $120 from TN to way. It's usually around $100-$150 to cut and crown a barrel and IMHO, the Weigand interchangeable front sight is the best replacement. Which will cost another $100-$150.

May 15, 2014, 02:25 PM
Shortening a revolver barrel would run $75~$100, plus the sight installation. Blued would run slighter higher than stainless for rebluing as the work would entail silver soldering the front sight.

Say purchase price of $500 + $200 modifications and you're right at $700 or so, if done locally. Add maybe another $150 shipping and you're approaching the price of a Smith.

Your call.

Bob Wright

Steve C
May 15, 2014, 02:38 PM
You can have a Taurus barrel cut down but the barrel probably needs to be cut at the front end of the closest vent rib support to have a place to mount the front sight which may be a bit over 2". I have seen shortened revolver barrels where the muzzle extended beyond the end of the rib support leaving the sight set back a bit. Worked but didn't look as clean as the normal configuration.

Another thing you may want to consider is while a Taurus will be an 8 shot snub nose it will still be a heavy all steel gun vrs the light weight scandium alloy S&W. For a gun you would pack around all day that extra lb or so in weight may make the S&W worth a couple hundred more depending upon your preferences and intended use.

Onward Allusion
May 15, 2014, 02:57 PM
Yup. Weight is a huge negative of "just" chopping down the barrel length...etc...etc. The S&W 327 is unbelievably light at 21 oz empty. And yes, I do intend on having it has a CC gun about 1/3 of the time.

May 15, 2014, 11:26 PM
So you are OK with eliminating the ported barrel? So far as I know, all the 608's, are all "V" ported, I have one and it came "V" ported NIB. And it was about $550 OTD.


Onward Allusion
May 15, 2014, 11:58 PM
Yeah, I already have a 608 with the 6" ported barrel. It doesn't do anything but make for a brighter flash when shooting indoors. I would pickup another and lop it down to 2". The biggest drawback is the weight. Even with the extra inches cut off, it is still going to be a lot heavier than a Scandium 327.

Old Fuff
May 16, 2014, 01:18 AM
If you go through with this project you might find that extra weight to be advantageous… :uhoh:

And in low light you will also get some pyrotechnics that you’ll find less then helpful. Of course you can avoid some of these negatives if you load your own cartridges.

May 16, 2014, 08:58 AM
Here's another question, and this is just for the sake of playing Devils Advocate.

By the time you are done, you're going to have a large, heavy N frame sized revolver, with a little snubby 2" bbl on it.
Were it me, I'd just go with a 2" K frame. There are plenty around, it will end up costing you less, and the end result will be smaller, lighter, and easier to conceal and carry. Of course, it does mean sacrificing two round capacity, and the lighter weight gun wold recoil more.
But for a carry gun? I'd do 2" K frame.

Again, it may not be your choice, and carrying an 8 round N frame would be kinda cool. Just wanted to throw out that option.

May 16, 2014, 01:15 PM
I can't tell from the pictures but if the ejector rod has a support at the front in the same way that is used with S&W revolvers then you won't want to cut into that. Depending on what is up at the front of the ejector rod clearance groove this could limit how short you can go.

I'd also agree with the others on the vent rib slots. You'll want to work to a length that keeps the last full web to use for securing the front sight. Or you'll be looking at making up and installing a custom front sight that mounts in place of the forward portion of the rib which would need to be cut away to allow a saddle for the sight block. All of that is time. And gunsmith time is money. The cost of the project could easily climb to more than the cost of the gun if you insist on going the hard way.

May 17, 2014, 12:22 PM
What about the Taurus 617? it's a 7 rounder?

May 17, 2014, 01:35 PM
Just why exactly do you want a large revolver with a really short barrel? I ask, because as was pointed out, when you are done the base gun will still be rather large. Having shot a large variety of different revolvers over the years, I have come to the conclusion that N frame size guns seem to handle better with a 4" barrel over shorter lengths. If you are thinking of a carry gun, something in a smaller frame size will be much easier to conceal.

Also, I see you having nearly the cost of the original gun all over again in doing a proper conversion. OTOH, if you just want to do it, that is a plenty good enough reason. :D

May 17, 2014, 05:53 PM
I used a hacksaw on my 6" Astra. Cost me about $50 dollars to do it myself. I was scared when I started, but was really pleased with how it turned out. :)
Scotch-brite pads, a file, and a coarse sanding sponge are also a must with a project like this.

I installed a 6-48 .175" Williams bead site and v-notched the rear sight. It shoots better now than it did with the 6" barrel. Here are a couple pics...

First I leveled and clamped it. I then used the edge of the clamp as my guide (courser blade cut much faster).

I used a 3/4 45 deg drill bit and a 45 drill stone for my crown. (Not recommended, but it worked for me).

I paid $30 to have a gunsmith drill and tap the 6-48 thread. I chose the 6-48 because it is the largest diameter of the shotgun bead sights. Very strong and you can raise the front sight with just a turn and a little blue lock-tight.

Here she is all finished with the wood grips back on. I have my front sight backed out about a 1/2 turn to reach the v-notch I put in the rear sight blade.

Onward Allusion
June 23, 2014, 11:13 AM
Just an update. Went and got myself a 617 a couple of weeks ago. The trigger/action was not smooth initially BUT after a couple of hundred rounds the thing is as smooth as any newer S&W. I like carrying 7 rounds of 357 so much that I am going to be selling some toys and will be getting the S&W 327 snub. Go big or go home! :D

June 23, 2014, 02:50 PM
Photos or it didn't happen! :neener:

Glad you like it.

June 25, 2014, 02:06 AM
Skidder.... man.... I've thought about doing that but letting my LGS finish the ultra-critical crowning. Looks great though. Does it shoot to POA?

Onward Allusion
July 3, 2014, 12:43 PM
skidder -

Some questions on your project.

- Did you use a hand hack saw to cut the barrel off? If yes, what was the tooth count?
- Was the vise bolted to the bench or was the vise heavy enough to prevent any significant movement?
- Did you have to grind or sand down the muzzle afterward?

Your gun looks really good, BTW. Does it shoot POA?

I got a lead on an inexpensive Taurus 608 for this project. It actually looks like it could be fun to do this. I mean, it's not like I would be doing it to a Korth! :D I'm also not too worried about accuracy since this will strictly a carry piece and it probably won't ever shoot at anything beyond 10 yards.

Thanks for the help!

Onward Allusion
July 15, 2014, 07:05 PM
Thought I'd share . . .

Took a Taurus stainless 4 inch 608 and cut down the barrel by 1 inch. This 608 like most others had a ported barrel. Basically lopped off the ported part. The ported part didn't do anything except for a whole lotta flash at night or at an indoor range. It really didn't do anything for recoil because the gun's already pretty heavy. Also, the ported portion is only a shroud/lug. No lands/grooves. It kind of defeats the purpose of having a 4 inch barrel. A big plus was that I didn't have to re-crown the barrel. It made the project a whole lot easier. Finally, at 3 inches, it also left a bit of the front sights on the barrel. BTW, at 3 inches, it also left all the lettering on the gun!

After cutting down the barrel, sanding down the edges, & polishing a bit, I cut down & filed the hammer spur by about 1/2 inch. It was just enough to leave the ability to use it in single action. Finally, added the LaserLyte laser and swapped the OEM grips for a set of shorter and thinner boot grips for the square butt. Overall, the 608's footprint shrunk by about 25%.

I'd included one picture that compares it to my "usually" carry piece - a 617. The cut down 608 is about 25% to maybe 33% larger, but still manageable as a concealed piece with a high-ride Galco and a good belt. I'm pretty sure that this 608 will become my usually carry piece as soon as I get my Galco Silhouette for the S&W N-Frame.

July 15, 2014, 10:33 PM
Nice job. The barrel looks like it's perfectly shaped to accept a standard dovetail and a low profile Trijicon front sight.

July 15, 2014, 10:34 PM
I love cutting barrels down!

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