Charter or taurus


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simonstough
January 9, 2016, 05:42 PM
I'm buying a .357 next month and I'm down to either the charter mag pug or a Taurus in .357 either a 605 or 617. The Taurus is 100-150 more, my question is
...is the extra money justifiable? Or should I save the hundred and buy from an American company, I've heard horror stories about both brands and their customer service. It isn't going to be a go to self defense weapon, I've already got higher quality revolvers and a 1911 for that role, the home defense niche is covered it's going to be a heavy hitting range gun and maybe carried if I'm comfortable that it's reliable.

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Drail
January 9, 2016, 07:50 PM
Charter. Taurus has gone just about all the way down the drain with their current production. Their older guns are fine. You might get a new Charter with a defect - but they will fix it very quickly.

TruthTellers
January 9, 2016, 08:05 PM
I'll take Charter on this one. Been in business 50+ years and have been known as good quality, value oriented carry guns for decades.

May not be as popular today with the pocket auto craze, but they're still good.

EDIT: Also, .357 from such a short barrel isn't a good choice for home defense. You shoot that in the house, you're gonna have a blinding flash at night and probably be deaf for a week. Why not look at the .38?

Drail
January 9, 2016, 09:27 PM
Definitely go with .38 Spl. loads in a snub. A .357 Mag in a snub is a complete waste of powder and is considerably harder to fire multiple shots from. Want to learn to flinch? Shoot some 125 gr. flame thrower loads out of a snub. Be sure to also try it at night if you can.

Analogkid
January 10, 2016, 02:45 AM
My vote would be Charter as well.

The ports really help if you can get that model. Kinda spit back at you a bit though. Not a big deal.


The charters have came a long way lately.


Good luck with purchase!

Stony
January 10, 2016, 03:03 AM
Might as well ask what's better....halitosis or bad breath? You are asking for a crap shoot either way.

Old Dog
January 10, 2016, 03:06 AM
I'll take Charter on this one. Been in business 50+ years and have been known as good quality, value oriented carry guns for decades.
Um, my understanding is that the current "Charter Arms" is NOT the same company as the older Charter Arms ...

Cooldill
January 10, 2016, 03:18 AM
You're right, they're better.

But they still kick out plenty of lemons.

Shootshellz
January 10, 2016, 04:52 AM
Neither. How much is your life worth?

45Frank
January 10, 2016, 07:31 AM
Just wondering how much cheaper are they then a Ruger, even used Rugers are good for ever?;)
Picked up a 1950's Mark I years ago and was is just like new until a pipe leaked in my gun room and left a rust spot on it. Sent it back to Ruger for a rebluing and it came back with all new innards, new grip box and papers. All for just around $100.00. Will either of these companies do that in 50 years for what you may be saving?

p95
January 10, 2016, 08:59 AM
dont you like smith and wessons???

joed
January 10, 2016, 09:19 AM
I've owned Charter and would never own another one. Also owned one Taurus and I regret selling it.

Why not buy a used S&W or Ruger?

Grumulkin
January 10, 2016, 10:25 AM
I had a Taurus and sold it with no regrets and would never buy another.

I have a Charter Arms revolver and was suprised at how nice it is. I would happily buy another if I needed one.

The Bushmaster
January 10, 2016, 10:54 AM
Smith & Wesson, Colt or Ruger. There will never be a taurus or charter arms in my safe or around the house.

WiTom
January 10, 2016, 11:22 AM
Stay away from anything Charter 2000, but they have gotten better since. I am in the same court that how much is your life worth? Cheap is not always better when protecting you or a loved one. Just saying.

stoky
January 10, 2016, 12:07 PM
dont you like smith and wessons???
I like Smiths, but in customer service they pale in comparison to Ruger, in my experience. From what I've read and heard, here and elsewhere, even the new Charter is superior to S&W in terms of customer support.
To the original question, I'd say Charter.
I have some Smiths and Rugers, have no Taurus nor Charter. I think the "how much is your life worth?" stich is hackneyed and fallacious. If it's reliable, reasonably accurate and the ergonomics suit you, it's expensive enough. :scrutiny:

Tallball
January 10, 2016, 01:03 PM
I have owned this one for a couple of years. It goes bang every time. The trigger is a little odd, but not heavy. It is as accurate as the fixed sights and my so-so shooting abilities allow. This one is 44 special, a preferred caliber of mine. If I ran across another Charter that tickled my fancy and passed my inspection, I wouldn't hesitate to buy it.

http://i1373.photobucket.com/albums/ag383/TallBall/CharterArmsBulldog_zps00d12af0.jpg

Tallball
January 10, 2016, 01:10 PM
I own Beretta, Colt, Ruger, Smith and Wesson, etc. This Taurus is the one that sleeps near my bed. I owned a Model 66 since the late 80's and had to use it for SD twice. When it was stolen about 15 years ago I bought this somewhat fancier version of the Model 66 to replace it. They cost me about $200 apiece used. The triggers, sights, and accuracy are/were excellent on both. When I have shot more thousands of rounds through something I shoot better, I will lock it away. Until then, it is my little security blanket.

http://i1373.photobucket.com/albums/ag383/TallBall/Taurus357_zps9f7f3a5a.jpg

CornCod
January 10, 2016, 01:19 PM
I carried a Taurus revolver as a security guard for awhile. I own a current production Charter Arms snubby in .22 magnum which has thus far presented no problems. My best advice would be to go over any prospective purchase with a fine-toothed comb. Check for excessive play in the cylinder or crane. Make sure the ejector rod works smoothly. Ask the store clerk for permission to dry fire it a few times.

bannockburn
January 10, 2016, 01:31 PM
Between the two I would probably go with Charter Arms. Just my own observation but on occasion I have checked out both brands at various gun shows and Taurus revolvers just seem to have more build quality issues to them than a comparable Charter Arms revolver.

khari
January 10, 2016, 01:37 PM
Good suggestions about considering others. You can get a good Ruger Security Six for anywhere from $325 to $450, and those are as solid as they come.

Haywood
January 10, 2016, 02:42 PM
The 617 with Ribber Grip or Hogue Grip would handle shooting 357 recoil the best. If you are going to shoot 38s all would work. I had a 605 and still have the 617.

old fart
January 10, 2016, 05:20 PM
of the two you mentioned i would pick charter, customer service much better. i had a charter a few years ago and hadt o send it in, came back in two weeks as a new gun. sold it to my brother inlaw to fund a vehicle purchase, he still has it and its working fine. however what about ruger, when i was looking to buy a carry revolver recently after selling my nano, i found a new ruger was only $50 more than a charter and about $75 more than a new taurus. ruger is worth the extra money. now i know how it is to be on a budget and a fixed income, if ruger was $150 or more then i would have went with charter myself, but just $50 i knew right away to go ruger,

joem1945
January 10, 2016, 07:30 PM
I wouldn't recommend taurus as I've had bad luck with 2 of them. Only 2 left and when they quit I'm done with them forever.

Omaha-BeenGlockin
January 10, 2016, 07:57 PM
I own an all stainless Taurus 605----with no complaints at all



It has been a good gun---so far---don't know what else to say---it shoots where I aim it and goes bang every time----and I got it cheap

harleyjeepster
January 11, 2016, 04:00 AM
As long as you get a current generation Charter you will be fine. A bad one slip's out every now and then but that happen's with all manufacture's. Their customer service is very good if you get one with an issue. As far as Taurus, I have a model 444 and my wife has a model 445, in 44 mag and 44 spec respectively. Neither of us have had a single issue, so far, but neither are first generation guns. Taurus's customer service is not as good, from what I have heard, but I have never had to use it so far. From what I have seen so far they have no more lemon's, per say, than anyone else except for their first run gun's. So I never buy a Taurus until they have been out for awhile. Beside the two revolver's I also have a PT145 auto 3rd gen that has functioned flawless to this point. While neither of these brand's are a Ruger or S&W they are not as bad as people try to make them sound.

jdavis123
January 11, 2016, 06:17 AM
There will never any agreement on this issue. Both companies have had spotty reputations in the past. I have owned guns from each brand in years past and they both worked fine. However, neither would measure up to their higher priced brethren. I sold the Charter years ago but still own the Taurus 990 which is a keeper. It does seem that either brand can be hit or miss but my experience has been positive with both brands.

Zendude
January 11, 2016, 12:58 PM
If buying new, get the Charter. I have two and no problems with either. I like Charter's DA trigger better than a stock j-frame trigger too.

TfflHndn
January 11, 2016, 01:10 PM
I have carried a Taurus 605 for years with no problems. Can't speak to the quality of the newer Taurus products, though.

weblance
January 11, 2016, 10:40 PM
There sure are a lot of experts in this thread that haven't posted anything useful. Charter and Taurus both make good guns, and the new revolvers from either manufacturer are very serviceable. I own 5 Charters and 4 Taurus revolvers. The Taurus guns LOOK better, but they shoot the same as the Charters. The OP asked about the Taurus 617. Mine is excellent. There is nothing else like it. I think its the ultimate carry revolver. I have a Taurus 9mm revolver, and a Taurus 327 Federal revolver. Both are small frame 2", and great little guns.

The centerfire Charters I own are a 44 Bulldog, a 38 Police Undercover(6 shot) and a 9mm Pitbull(6 shot). Great guns, no issues with these revolvers.

I also own a Rossi 462. These are excellent budget revolvers as well. Its a 6 shot 357, has a very good trigger, and shoots perfectly.

I own Rugers and Smith $ Wessons also, so I have higher priced revolvers to compare the budget guns to. Go ahead and spend more money if you wish. They certainly are a source of pride. Do they shoot better? I dont think so...

USAF_Vet
January 11, 2016, 11:13 PM
Stay away from anything Charter 2000, but they have gotten better since. I am in the same court that how much is your life worth? Cheap is not always better when protecting you or a loved one. Just saying.
His life is worth buying a gun. Any gun in your hand is better for defense than money in the bank waiting to buy a better gun. When a bad guy kicks in your door at 2AM, yelling at him to wait a couple more months because my S&W is on layaway isn't going to be nearly as effective as a Charter or Taurus pointed at his head.

To the OP:

I can't speak for Taurus revolvers, the only one I had was an inaccurate POS .22 that I traded off pretty quickly. I do however, speak well for certain models of the semi automatic pistols.

I've heard decent things about Charter, as well as Taurus. Personally, if I were to want to buy another revolver, it'd be the Charter Southpaw.

But, for the same, or similar money, a used Ruger or S&W can be found. Might have to bide your time and shop around, so if time is of the essence, buy the one you feel the most comfortable with.

Taurus copies of S&W guns seem to be pretty functional and reliable. I'd start there.

Deaf Smith
January 11, 2016, 11:45 PM
L A Y - A W A Y. Do that and get a quality .357. Ruger or S&W.

Deaf

gun_with_a_view
January 12, 2016, 01:15 PM
A Charter or Taurus either one is OK as a primary gun. So long as your backup is a J frame.

harleyjeepster
January 12, 2016, 11:36 PM
Why do all the S&W people always gotta chime into threads about other brands and just comment on what a piece of junk they are.:cuss:I have never owned, nor may ever own a Smith, so I will stay away from direct comments about them w/o personal experience. My wife and I both own Taurus revolvers and they have both been 100% so far. I have been looking at the Charter since Taurus dropped their model 445. While both have had issues in the past, so has every manufacture including S&W. Charters current owner is, as far as I can tell, doing all he can to get the company back to where it should be after a couple dubious owners. Taurus has had issues in the past,as well, but all of mine have been 100%. While I will readily concede that Smiths are the best looking of all firearms are tools to me. I don't care if they are pretty or not as long as they function. And ,as far as that, my Ruger's and Taurus's have searved me just fine. In the near future I may find a Charter does the same.:cool:

45Frank
January 13, 2016, 07:42 AM
Why do all the S&W people always gotta chime into threads about other brands and just comment on what a piece of junk they are.:cuss:I have never owned, nor may ever own a Smith, so I will stay away from direct comments about them w/o personal experience. My wife and I both own Taurus revolvers and they have both been 100% so far. I have been looking at the Charter since Taurus dropped their model 445. While both have had issues in the past, so has every manufacture including S&W. Charters current owner is, as far as I can tell, doing all he can to get the company back to where it should be after a couple dubious owners. Taurus has had issues in the past,as well, but all of mine have been 100%. While I will readily concede that Smiths are the best looking of all firearms are tools to me. I don't care if they are pretty or not as long as they function. And ,as far as that, my Ruger's and Taurus's have searved me just fine. In the near future I may find a Charter does the same.:cool:
I have never owned a Taurus but a good friend does, it's a. 454 Casul (Raging Bull) he bought in the early 90's and he has never had a problem with it and like it.
I did own one S&W in my life, a SS629 in 44 mag and it was junk. Had timing issues, cylinder would slide back and not rotate. After the second time back and seemed like a year I didn't want it and didn't feel comfortable selling it so I gave it to a friend who played with it for a while and it's now a door stop and conversation piece.
As I said earlier I own Rugers and never had a problem and they have gone way out of their way when I needed something done on a 50 year old gun.
So y'all can make your own decision!

dawei
January 13, 2016, 03:35 PM
FWIW, I have 10 Taurus® revolvers and am uber pleased with each and every one. My 617SS2 2¼" 357 Magnum is my EDCG and can attest to its quality, accuracy, and reliability. My wife's EDCG is a Taurus® 605SS2 and it is of the same high quality as my 617. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND both guns!

cc-hangfire
January 13, 2016, 05:29 PM
Between the choices you propose in the OP, I add another vote to Charter for the reasons mentioned. Good customer service, American company, current production guns have an improved reputation.

I have three .38spl snubbies: Charter Undercover, S&W 642, & Ruger LCR. I got them all used. Fit on the Charter I have is as tight as the others, finish is a step below them. Trigger on the Charter is heavier than the other two as well, but - after a hammer spring upgrade (had some light strikes with the original spring) - it is as reliable as the S&W and Ruger. For me it is a kit gun since I don't worry about some wear on it.

gun_with_a_view
January 13, 2016, 08:32 PM
You gotta hand it to Charter for it's six-shot .38 Special Police Undercover model. For about $800 you can buy a steel S&W Model 36 five-shot snub. For the same money you can get two steel Charter Police Undercover six-shot snubs on a slightly larger frame. From comments on this forum, Charter's quality has risen lately, while Smith's has slipped. Weather one is a good as the other remains debatable. But for someone who doesn't need a gun often, the Charter Police Undercover is an appealing alternative to the Smith.

Elm Creek Smith
January 15, 2016, 09:30 AM
I am a S&W guy. That said, my brother has a Charter Undercover that he has owned since he was flying missions in SE Asia. For his birthday a few years back, I had it Parkerized since the blue had suffered over the forty-some years. He doesn't carry it anymore, but he still has and it still shoots. I have had three Taurus revolvers over the years, an old, 4 inch 66 (the right recoil shield was part of the sideplate), and two new 85SS2ULs. The only one left is an 85SS2UL "on loan" (meaning I won't get it back and she inherits it when I die) to my older daughter.

Either one would do IF you inspect it closely and it passes all the regular revolver function tests. I have been tempted in the recent past by the Taurus 817SS2UL and the 617SS2, but I ended up buying a brand new S&W 642-2 for $229.95 ($249.54 OTD). I just wish S&W would make a 7 shot, fixed sight, 2½ or 3 inch .357 Magnum L-Frame revolver.

dawei
January 16, 2016, 12:02 PM
I am a S&W guy. That said, my brother has a Charter Undercover that he has owned since he was flying missions in SE Asia. For his birthday a few years back, I had it Parkerized since the blue had suffered over the forty-some years. He doesn't carry it anymore, but he still has and it still shoots. I have had three Taurus revolvers over the years, an old, 4 inch 66 (the right recoil shield was part of the sideplate), and two new 85SS2ULs. The only one left is an 85SS2UL "on loan" (meaning I won't get it back and she inherits it when I die) to my older daughter.

Either one would do IF you inspect it closely and it passes all the regular revolver function tests. I have been tempted in the recent past by the Taurus 817SS2UL and the 617SS2, but I ended up buying a brand new S&W 642-2 for $229.95 ($249.54 OTD). I just wish S&W would make a 7 shot, fixed sight, 2½ or 3 inch .357 Magnum L-Frame revolver.
__________________

L Frame 7 shot 2½" barrel 357 Magnum (http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product4_750001_750051_764963_-1_757769_757767_757751_ProductDisplayErrorView_Y)

CPLofMARINES
January 16, 2016, 06:54 PM
Neither

il.bill
January 16, 2016, 07:13 PM
L Frame 7 shot 2½" barrel 357 Magnum[/COLOR] (http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product4_750001_750051_764963_-1_757769_757767_757751_ProductDisplayErrorView_Y)

I have one and like it a whole lot but that 686+ is NOT a fixed sight model.

I just bought a 2" Stainless Steel Taurus Model 85FS this week. I have no idea about its durability, but with over 50 rounds through it I am pleased to report that it shoots very, very well at 10 yards and the trigger is great, both DA and SA, and it feels great in hand. Fo significantly less than $300 OTD I am quite happy with it. A buddy just got a Charter Arms Pit Bull 9mm Luger revolver and I like that one a lot, too. They are both nice sized 5-shot revolvers.

Come to think of it, I am pretty easy - I have met very few firearms that I did not like!

HKGuns
January 16, 2016, 08:41 PM
Neither, save for a Ruger or S&W.

dawei
January 17, 2016, 10:36 AM
quote:
Originally posted by dawei view post
l frame 7 shot 2½" barrel 357 magnum
i have one and like it a whole lot but that 686+ is not a fixed sight model.oops; lol!!!!!

chaim
January 17, 2016, 10:44 AM
Buy what you like. Both make good guns (and the vast majority of their production is good guns), and both make more lemons than either S&W or Ruger. Both have great warranties, though Charter has much better customer service.

I have had a couple Taurus revolvers that I shouldn't have sold (I've had an 82 and a 605) and I currently have a Taurus 85CH (factory bobbed hammer DAO version of the 85). All have been great guns (though the trigger on the old 82 I had was a little rough in DA, newer production is better). I also have a Rossi 461 (made by Taurus) which had some issues during break-in but has been fine after break-in, and I have a 3" Rossi 461 on order.

I have never owned a Charter Arms, but I have often considered a .44spl Bulldog and if I don't first find a nice used Taurus 431 (K-frame sized .44spl available in a 3" barrel), Rossi 720 (K-frame sized .44spl available in 3") or a Taurus 450 (2.5" .45LC) when I also have the money available, I will probably buy a CA Bulldog.

All that said, I do like S&W better (and I've had several that I sold, though they were great guns, and I currently have three). I don't agree with those who say you have to get a S&W or Ruger to get a good revolver, but they are definitely more refined and less likely to give trouble (and have great customer service when they do). You don't have to save longer to get the Ruger or S&W, but you will likely have a nicer gun if you do.


Edit:

Oh, as for the specific guns you're considering, while I don't love a 2" barrel .38 or .357mag, I would probably go with the 7-shot Taurus 617 with the 5-shot 605 in 2nd (and only if the price difference is prohibitive for you).

lowercase
January 17, 2016, 03:40 PM
Charter Mag Pug or a Taurus in .357 either a 605 or 617.

I have both. Here are my observations.

Of my two examples, the Taurus has better fit and finish, plus a much nicer trigger.

The Charter shot way low out of the box. WAYYY low. I filed off about 50% of the front sight to correct it. This isn't an unknown issue for the Mag Pug. I also DO NOT like the ported barrel of the Mag Pug. It spits debris back at the shooter when firing .357. I'm not trying to knock Charters...I collect them and currently own 7 of their revolvers. While my Mag Pug has
a so-so trigger, my .44 Bulldog (made in 2012) has a great trigger, was very accurate out of the box, and doesn't have a ported barrel.

Between my two, the Mag Pug has a much more utilitarian-looking bead blasted stainless finish, while the 605 has a bright nickel finish. I really don't have any preference either way on the finishes.

Both of these guns go bang every time the trigger is pulled. Sure, they are both lower-tier guns, compared to Smith and Ruger, but they do work. Both carry very easily, and I would be fine carrying either one for self defense.

Regarding the Charter Arms gun, I would recommend looking at a "Police Undercover" vs the Mag Pug. It is a .38spl built on the same frame, but you get one extra round (6 vs 5) and don't have the ported barrel.

Pics (no flash and flash):

http://i1167.photobucket.com/albums/q634/lowercase2/P1172984.jpg

http://i1167.photobucket.com/albums/q634/lowercase2/P1172982.jpg

Nathanael_Greene
January 17, 2016, 06:47 PM
I've always had good luck with Taurus firearms, but I have to say that a few years ago I bought an old Charter Arms Off-Duty (the Undercover with a cheaper finish), and while it'll never win any beauty contests, it shoots darned straight for a 2" barrel, has a nice trigger and solid lockup. I'm very impressed with it.

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