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9mm Taurus 905 review and range Chronograph report

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by R.W.Dale, Apr 12, 2012.

  1. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Well-Known Member

    I new if a LGS ever had one of these I'd buy it despite the Taurus stigma. Well while out scouring for a deeper concealing revolver to compliment my 60-18 and use the same leather today I happened apoun a NIB blued 905 for $380 otd with a box of estate 115g 9mm. This particular example has an outstanding deep blue finish, a lockup that I describe as firmly average and a DA trigger that's quite smooth if a bit short feeling compared to my s&w.


    Half an hour later I was on the range. No cleaning, no lubricating, no nothing but taken out of the box and checked for a bore obstruction.

    The first thing that became quite evident (and discussed in another thread of mine) is that for use as a speedy reload the stellar clips are useless. They simply hold on to the cartridges far too loosely to survive a pocket. They do however provide for an instantaneous ejection of the empties with a quickness clipless revolvers can only envy.


    The cylinder is however cut for case mouth headspace and the stellar clips can be omitted completely and the gun still shoot. I figure for ccw my first five will be clipped once ejected reloaded from a speed strip. After those are expended if I need another reload I'm probably toast anyways.

    Recoil with the practice grade factory ammunition and my 95g sp handloads I had on hand seemed quite on par with 38spl. At first I had a tendency to shoot left but whatever bad habit I had started with went away the more I shot.

    Accuracy IMO was quite good for an average handgunner such as me single action slowfiring at 12yds. In a defense situation I definitely wouldn't be missing because of the gun.


    DA rapid fire from the holster yielded more than satisfactory results (two cylinder dumps pictured) with the somewhat less than outstanding estate ammunition. 12yds


    As mentioned previously recoil was very 38 like. This is likely largely due to the somewhat weak ammunition I was firing. The 115g estate FMJ went over the chrony at 1050fps and my 95g pulled SP over a Max charge of hs6 registered 1260 fps in a kinda dirty way.

    Out of 100 rounds there were no malfunctions. However there were 3 rounds from my bulk who knows where the brass came from handloads that wouldn't chamber fully thus preventing the cylinder from swinging closed . On two it appeared to be due to the cases being out of spec from the rim to extractor groove, these two fired without the stellar clips. The third I think was just a bulged case. It wouldn't work with or without clips. There were no issues with the new ammunition, and the three reloaded rounds problems were evident apoun loading.

    All in all a very fun cheap to feed piece. I burned up all 100rounds I had on hand in no time FIVE AT A TIME:D and best of all a quick range scrounge had me leaving with 100% more brass than I arrived with.
  2. MCgunner

    MCgunner Well-Known Member

    Nice. I have been wanting a 405 (.40 S&W), but if I stumbled on a 905, I could be swayed for the fact that I don't have dies or am I set up for .40. I have a Dillon Square Deal dedicated to 9x19. :D

    I've heard the moon clips are fragile on those things, bend easily. Never handled one, though.
  3. fatcat4620

    fatcat4620 Well-Known Member

    Very nice. I have a 605 and love the gun.
  4. Remllez

    Remllez Well-Known Member

    Try TK Custom for moon clips.....top notch and built to last. I carry them in my pocket all the time and never had a round fall out. Good shooting....i like 9 mm revolvers and have shot them many years.
  5. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Well-Known Member

    A quick look over on BBTI's 38 spl page shows that this 115 grain practice grade 9mm load already eclipses 110grain 38 defense loads fried from similar revolvers in terms of velocity and energy. Most interesting! more testing is warranted.

  6. MCgunner

    MCgunner Well-Known Member

    9x19 SAAMI limit is 35,000 PSI. +P is 38,500. .38 special is 17,000 and 20,000 for standard and +P. .357 Magnum SAAMI pressure is 35,000 PSI. SO, it's not surprising that out of a short barrel, the 9mm actually will EXCEED a 125 grain HOT .357 magnum ballistics. My own +P 9mm load out of my Kel Tec P11 pushes 1263 fps/410 ft lbs. That's hand over fist more than I get from a +P .38 (about 275 ft lbs) and more than I get from a .357 magnum 125 grain bullet over 18 grains of 2400 in a 2.25" SP101 (385 ft lbs). The 9 is making .357 snubby power without all the flash bang and recoil BECAUSE it is using a very fast burn (Unique) powder. The .357 is using a very slow burn bulky powder in a large volume case. the .357 works better with a 140 JHP Speer (17 grains 2400 in that SP101), gives 550 ft lbs from the short barrel. Longer barrels really help the .357, too. But, apples vs apples, 2" guns, the 9 is right there with the .357 magnum and FAR outdistances the .38 special due to WORKING PRESSURE. Of course, you won't find the 9x19 chambered in an aluminum alloy light weight snubby due to pressure. It requires the strength of steel. My little 17 ounce M85SSUL is easier to tote in a pocket than a 24 ounce steel gun.
  7. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Well-Known Member

    Agreed MC! This little snubby is quite the lesson in handgun ballistics and really drives home the point that in handguns of the same caliber PRESSURE is far far the most important factor in performance compared to case capacity.

    Ill be bumping this thread as I chrony more factory ammunition and handloads. I invite anyone with 2" 38's and 357's and a Chronograph to post their velocity data here so as to once and for all FINALLY build an apples to apples comparison of performance.
  8. MCgunner

    MCgunner Well-Known Member

    It's not just the pressure of the 9, but also the small case volume which allows that pressure to work with a FAST, less bulky powder. One can push a 125 .357 with Unique to 35,000 PSI, but still won't go any better than a 9 with less case capacity and will use more powder to do it due to the higher volume case such that it will give more recoil for nothing in ballistics. IOW, the 9 is a more EFFICIENT case in a snubby revolver. The .357 really requires a longer barrel to get all that pressure to work efficiently. The .38 is just out of the running from the get go with no more than a 20,000 PSI limit.

    I'd really like to play with the M405 in .40S&W. That one intrigues me. :D But, the 9 is pretty danged impressive as snubbies go. :D
  9. Carne Frio

    Carne Frio Well-Known Member

  10. bdb benzino

    bdb benzino Well-Known Member

    The moon clips from Ranch Products are way better than the stellar clips Taurus provides.
    I also have a blued 905 also and love it, I use it as a BUG and sometimes and as a main carry too. I have seen the ballistic numbers on how good a 9mm works out of a small revolver, and also like how cost effective it is for practice. I use the Speer GDHP 124gr +P and have great confidence in it as a preformer.
    I really like having a same caliber back up for my BHP's or my Kahr CW9, and have found that 905 to be a quality revolver all around.
    If you like this revolver for CC I will recomend the loaded moonclip carriers, sold by either Matt DelFatti Leather Co. or I beleive that TK Customs has some as well. They hold the rounds secure in the clip with kydex wrapped around the bottom and a rubber coated shaft in the middle that can be adjusted to hold tighter or looser. They make it possible to throw a couple reloads in your pocket and not worry at all about the rounds coming loose or bending the moonclips!
    Here is a pic of my 905 and CC set up.

  11. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Well-Known Member

    Do the ranch products moon clips cause any interference issues? Because from what I gather depending on how the tolerances stack up they only work in about half of the 905's out there.

    I think I may have an ingenious way around needing the clips to extract a reload. Ill post more about it when I know if it'll work.

    Last edited: Apr 13, 2012
  12. bdb benzino

    bdb benzino Well-Known Member

    Yes, I had to take a dremel to a few of the clips to make sure that the clearance was good and function was proper. How you knew that, I am curious.
    Let me know how your experiment works out!
  13. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Well-Known Member

    I've researched the 905 quite extensively and its even reported on midway's customer reviews for the clips in question.

    OK my tests were successful. One way to get around the extraction issue from an un clipped reload is to make rimmed 9x19 cases from 38s&w (not special) simply size and expand in a 9mm die using a 38/357 shellholder and trim to 9x19 length. (Pictured above) This gives you ammunition that extracts without a clip, fires just fine still headspacing on the case mouth and fits in 38spl speed strips and speedloaders.

    I would keep the loads in these cases to 38s&w or. 380 pressure levels though as these are cases for a blackpowder era cartridge of unknown construction.

    I took another trip to the range earlier and chronographed some more loads with some rather astonishing results if you ask me

    First off were the short 38s&w cases loaded with 3.0g of ww231 under a 124g plated HB RN. These were good for 630fps. This load will be increased.

    Next were the real eye openers!

    Speer factory 124g +P GDHP ammunition averaged 1155fps for five shots! This is smoking from a snubby and flat out puts 38spl back on the trailer.

    Most interesting of all though is I had ONE round of the infamous L7A1 124g +p++ NATO submachine gun ammo. This solo round registered 1233 fps over the screens :eek: with sticky extraction and a pierced primer.

    Even at these impressive performance levels recoil and blast remains on par with a 38 snubby and nowhere near the obnoxious levels you get from a 357mag in a short barrel. IMO 9x19 is much better suited to this platform than ANY of its rimmed counterparts.
  14. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

    9mm Auto Rim lives again

  15. RevolvingGarbage

    RevolvingGarbage Well-Known Member

    I had always suspected that .38 s&w would work as a 9mm AR substitute. I need to get myself a 905 now!
  16. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Well-Known Member

    It works surprising well. I'm sure different manufacturers brass specs differently but the vintage ww cases I used seem as though they're going to hold up well bulging only slightly (I've seen factory 38/357's bulge brass more) I am reluctant though to toss a full on 9x19 load in them for obvious reasons.
  17. firesky101

    firesky101 Well-Known Member

    That was an interesting reason to bring back this thread...

    R.W. Dale, if you happen by this resurrection please let us know if you have pushed the pressures in your modified .38 S&W cases yet. Seems like if you could get decent brass you could have a winner there. Maybe starline would work.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2012
  18. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Well-Known Member

    Just on looks alone of the fired cases I've come to the conclusion that the 38s@w cases are best kept to mild pressures. Granted I'm using vintage Winchester brass here and not new starline

    Bearing I'm mind these are for a reload where their primary purpose is to work in the gun and have a bullet come out after expending the first five gold dots. They'll do this just fine at 750 fps
  19. Jim K

    Jim K Well-Known Member

    I saw a report that the reason the 9mm Federal (9mm Luger with a rim) was withdrawn was that it blew some old .38 S&W revolvers. I cannot confirm that, but it seems quite possible.

  20. HiCap1

    HiCap1 Well-Known Member

    I have two boxes of Federal 9mm waiting for a home. So.....I just bought a 905. I'll bet the Federals will fit into an HKS speed loader for .38's.


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