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How strong is the S&W model 25 in 45 LC?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by osteodoc08, Jul 3, 2013.

  1. osteodoc08

    osteodoc08 Well-Known Member

    Basically as the title asks, since the 25 is built on the N frame, how strong is the action in terms of reload ability in comparison to say, "Ruger Only" loadings.

    I have a redhawk but prefer the lines of the Smith.
  2. Drail

    Drail Well-Known Member

    It is plenty strong enough that it's not going to blow up in your hand but using any kind of high velocity / high pressure loads will shorten the service life of the gun regardless of brand. It will go out of time. The Ruger will take more abuse than the S&W but the S&W is capable of being tuned for a better DA trigger pull. If you buy a S&W run standard loads with some occasional hot stuff. Just don't feed it a steady diet and expect it to last. It won't.
  3. CraigC

    CraigC Well-Known Member

    Strong enough for loads in the .45ACP's pressure range. So higher than standard pressures but about 10,000psi less than "Ruger only".
  4. USSR

    USSR Well-Known Member

    While the S&W Model 25 cannot handle the "Ruger Only" loads, it can be loaded far higher than standard .45 Colt loadings. I have a S&W 25-5, and noting that the Model 25-2 (same revolver in .45 ACP) is rated for .45 ACP +P loads (23k psi) and having spoken to John Linebaugh about the .45 Colt N frames, I restrict my loads to sub-25k psi. My favorite load consists of the .45-270 SAA bullet with 18.0gr of 2400. Another good load that is recommended by Linebaugh consists of 13.0gr of HS-6. Either of these loads would work equally well with readily available 255gr SWC's. Hope that helps.

  5. osteodoc08

    osteodoc08 Well-Known Member

    That's the kinda info I'm looking for. So in between normal pressure and ruger only is ok for restricted use?

    The reason I'm asking is I like to hunt with my revolvers and the Smiths just feel better overall to me.
  6. huntershooter

    huntershooter Well-Known Member


    I shoot 255 gr. KTSWCGC and either 2400 or AA9 @ 1080+- fps (4" "Mountain Gun").
    With decent shot placement and at reasonable (iron sight) handgun range of <50 yds. terminal performance (hogs) is similar to a .30/06.
  7. CraigC

    CraigC Well-Known Member

    Nobody will blame you for that, I prefer them for DA's as well. Run a good 250-270gr cast bullet around 1050-1100fps and you can't ask for much better.
  8. osteodoc08

    osteodoc08 Well-Known Member

    Now don't get me wrong, I like my Rugers as well, but overall fit an finish, my vote is for the Smith. I own about even numbers for both though, with the edge probably going to Ruger, simply because of the blackhawk platform.

    That brings up a good question, why hasn't/doesn't smith play in the SA arena? I'd pay a little more for a slicked up SA like the blackhawk, just not Colt money for it.
  9. 9mmfan

    9mmfan Well-Known Member

    Smith made the break top single actions, which I like the looks of. However, even the Italian repros are creeping up near Colt money. I think S&W did a limited run a handful of years ago, and I don't even want to know what those are going for now. The problem with those is that the design is apparently not as strong as a solid frame.

    Other than that,since Smith & Wesson are pretty much the king of DA revolvers (current production. And I did say pretty much, before everybody gets all up in my face.:p), they are leaving the other game to the folks that have been doing it right for a while. IM very HO.
  10. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Well-Known Member

    They aren't even slightly interested because the demand doesn't (or wouldn't) be enough to justify the cost of development, tooling and production.

    Also if they did make what you have in mind the cost wouldn't be less then what Colt is asking, and might be more.

    Smith & Wesson does make versions of the 1911 and AR-15 platforms because the sales are large enough to support the associated cost of production.
  11. osteodoc08

    osteodoc08 Well-Known Member

    I've got a smith 1911 and for my money, it's the best in that genre.

    I appreciate all the responses guys, I may have to look into that 6" 25-x they have at my LGS.
  12. natman

    natman Well-Known Member

    Open the cylinder and take a look from the rear. Note how amazingly thin the cylinder wall is at the thinnest point.

    Then look at the cylinder from the side. Note that the bolt notch is cut exactly at the thinnest point.

    It's amazing you can't see through it with a strong light. ;)

    An S&W in 45 Colt is a fine gun, but it's not the right platform for using the strongest loads possible.
  13. murf

    murf Well-Known Member

    "ruger only" loads should never be used in that gun. some people use the lightest "ruger only" load as the max load for the n-frame smiths (would stay away from h-110/w296).

    for hunting take craigc's advice. keith-type lead bullets at 1000fps will travel through most any critter in this country.

  14. Tom K

    Tom K Member

    Sell the Model 25, buy a Model 29. Problem solved.
  15. I get the feeling whenever someone has to ask this question, they are better served by the .44 Magnum. S&W makes such a gun, called the Model 29.
  16. osteodoc08

    osteodoc08 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the opinions guys.

    I prefer the lines and feel of the N frame and like 45 LC. I have a ruger BH and RH in 45 LC. I have a marlin cowboy limited as well. But I still prefer the N frame. I know it can't handle the ruger only loads. I would hope it can handle more than the old 45LC pressures. I'm looking for advice as to what I could/should load my loads up to and how strong the N frame is in 45LC.

    As far as hunting, I have plenty to choose from including, 357, 41, 44, 45LC and 454 Casull. But I really like my 45 and I'd like to be able to hunt with it (Model 25) if I so chose to do so. That's what prompted the question. It's not like there is "Smith Only" load info out there.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2013
  17. BlindJustice

    BlindJustice Well-Known Member

    I've got a S&W N-frame and prefer it's lines and handling.
    It's the 625-19 in .45 ACP / .45 Auto Rim .45 ACP +P or
    some 'warmed up to those velocities in .45 AUto Rim.

    Someone once posted that S&W said it was ok, to firee
    .45 SUper in a .45 ACPS&W N-frame which runs around 28K CUP,
    .45 ACP is 21K CUP and +P at 23K CUP.

    I don't have the need for .45 Super.

    I also have a Marlin 1894 20" octagonal Bbl. in .45 Colt
    so a Ruger BH in the same chambering is in my future

    Remember, Elmer Keith chose to work on heavier loads
    in the '20's&'30s .44 Special over .45 Colt because the
    .44 Special has thicker cylinder walls.

  18. smkummer

    smkummer Well-Known Member

    Very Sweet gun

    I have shot my buddies 25-5 with a 8 3/8 barrel and using 9 grains Unique and a 255 SWC Lyman bullet( about max. Colt SAA load), its very accurate to 100 yards. Chronographing at about 950. Just judging the way it "tings" the 16" steel plate, I have no doubt about what it would do to a hog or a deer size critter, which is most likely go clean through. Most of the cylinder is thicker than the Colt SAA and others have shot hotter loads than standard Colt loads but for myself, I don't believe I would need anymore than the above load mentioned. And the grip fits my small hand great. I am a Colt shooter (SAA or 45 Anaconda) but I really like the 25-5 and the 25-5 loves the Lyman 255 SWC kieth bullet 452424 unsized.
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2013
  19. orionengnr

    orionengnr Well-Known Member

  20. tipoc

    tipoc Well-Known Member

    The N frame Smiths in 45 Colt are good guns. They can handle any load that a Colt SAA and it's clones can.

    Ruger and Contender only loads though are meant for the guns mentioned. The S&W 25 is not durable enough for those loads.

    For self defense purposes and for 95% of all the game in North America the M25 in 45 Colt will do just fine.

    So sez me, John Taffin, Mike Venturino, Brian Pierce and a whole lot of other folks.


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