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Is The Taurus 4510 "Judge" a good defense weapon

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by gmmcm64, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. gmmcm64

    gmmcm64 New Member


    I see many unfavorable comments about the Taurus 4510 but I get it that it is primarily in the context of experienced gun enthusiasts. I just want to pick up a couple of these weapons for my wife and I to defend ourselves in case the we ever became under attack in our vehicle or home. We just want to stop someone without worrying about becoming good marksmen.

    Will it serve this purpose effectively?

    Thank you all in advance.
  2. WC145

    WC145 Well-Known Member

    I have a 4410 (from before they called it "The Judge") and when I carry it or put it on the nightstand, I load it with a couple of .410 #6's and 3 .45LC 250gr Gold Dots and I'm confident it will do the job if needed.
  3. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Well-Known Member

    Define "good." A .45 Colt (or a .410 shotgun shell with buckshot or slugs) has the power department covered. But the thing looks awfully unwieldy and not very concealable.
  4. Zip7

    Zip7 Well-Known Member

    No. Use a baseball bat. There is no gun that doesn't need to be aimed.
  5. The Lone Haranguer

    The Lone Haranguer Well-Known Member

    Again, you have to define "good." It will not relieve you of the need to place the shot accurately.
  6. gmmcm64

    gmmcm64 New Member

    Cute... but just to be clear, I am not naive enough to think we don't need to know about how to handle the gun. We have 38 snubs and know how difficult it is to become a proficient aim.

    I am looking practical info about the product. It's all good and I appreciate the attempt at humor.
  7. machinisttx

    machinisttx Well-Known Member

    With .45 Colt loads and proper shot placement, sure. With anything in .410...not likely. I'd bet on buckshot over a .410 slug though, since the slug only weighs around 100 grains. A .410 slug would also be over .040" too small for the .45 caliber barrel.

    There are better choices.
  8. gmmcm64

    gmmcm64 New Member

    Interesting... What would you recommend for concealment, handling and a real stopper?
  9. Shade00

    Shade00 Well-Known Member

    If you are looking at this gun because you don't want to spend the timing become proficient with it, then Taurus's marketing is working.

    IMHO there is no substitute for practicing EXTENSIVELY with any home defense weapon. It is my understanding, at any rate, that the Taurus Judge has subpar accuracy when used with .45 LC and less-than-breathtaking stopping power with .410 shotshells. That is NOT to say that it cannot be used effectively - but allure of shotshells in the piece is somehow overcoming the need for substantial practice with the gun. Your money would be better spent on a real shotgun.

    A better choice for me would be just about any steel .38 special with some +P ammo. You could practice fairly inexpensively.
  10. Zip7

    Zip7 Well-Known Member

    I don't mean any offense... and I see where you are coming from. I've seen a lot of people (myself included) dissapointed in the accuracy of snub nose guns, as they are indeed hard for most people to shoot accurately at anything that's not super close. To me that means that I need to be familiar with what my effective range is with whatever gun I have.

    Most short barreled compact handguns are made for close encounters, and they are not really my cup of tea. I like to plink, and I do that much more often than I actually have to defend myself with a handgun. I am able to shoot better with a larger framed - longer barreled gun, and so those are what I prefer. The shortest barrels I shoot on a regular basis are 4.5" or so. I have a .357 Ruger single action in 6.5" barrel that I think is just the right size, and I am very familiar with single action revolvers, so that is what I keep handy in the house. I've got some longer ones - up to 8+ inches and at that point they become a little impractical for HD - at least to me they do.

    I've never shot the Judge, but have seen them at gun shows... I don't like it, because it seems to me like you give up a lot to gain the ability to fire .410 shotshells - which I don't personally have a use for. The ones I've seen are big and bulky looking but still have short snubby barrels.

    For my money, I'd stick with a full size DA revolver in the 4-5" Barrel Range - probably Smith & Wesson K or N size or a Ruger GP100, etc, but the point is - it's not my money - it's yours. You need to get what you can shoot well - what fits you best. If the Judge feels like an extension of your arm, and you have confidence in it and can hit with it, then there's no doubt it will do the job - especially loaded with 45 Colt rounds...

    If you aren't that good with 38 Snub nose guns (many people aren't) the best route is to shop around - a lot - and find one that's a little bigger, and more importantly, one that feels right in your hand and is a quality piece. Will make learning to shoot it accurately much easier.
  11. themic

    themic Well-Known Member

    I'd argue you should aim your baseball bat too. :D

    Really, I think if you're thinking "Judge", and you're thinking "home defense", it's time to buy a nice used remington slide action shotgun and a few boxes of 00 buckshot. Effective, easy, and much more of an intuitive aimer.
  12. themic

    themic Well-Known Member

    I just realized that I just said that on a revolver forum. Whoops. :rolleyes:
  13. jaholder1971

    jaholder1971 Well-Known Member

    Judge would be OK using .45 Colt loads. I'd go with the Federal 255 LHP or the Silvertip if they still make it.

    Forget .410, the shot doesn't have much oomph to penetrate the vitals, however I imagine a shot to the face from 10' would qualify them to work at the Lighthouse Industries for the blind once they're out of prison.
  14. Psywarrior13

    Psywarrior13 Well-Known Member

    Ok, coming from a Judge owner here are my .02. First, The Judge is not my HD weapon, I use my SIG for that. I bought the Judge because it is just plain fun for me to shoot, and I got a good deal on it. Would it be an effective HD weapon? With the .45 Colt loads, yes, it can be an effective defensive tool, with the .410? I wouldn't want to find out the hard way honestly. In my experience they are more user-friendly than I thought they would be, and at least mine is VERY accurate. Ammo is not on the cheap side, and if you practice with the lead rounds (which are the cheapest you can get) you will spend a lot of time with care and cleaning. Training is vital with any weapon you own/operate, there is simply no substitute for it, even with a shotgun with a good load of buck requires at a minimum familiarization. As far as a concealment piece, I would look at something else, there are better choices for that. Overall, I enjoy my Judge, and would feel very comfortable using it in an HD situation with .45 Colt loads if that was my only weapon. If you can find a place to rent one, try it out, and if you feel comfortable with it, great get it, don't let anyone stop you. But, if you don't there are many other fine choices that fit your needs.

    Hope this helps. Good luck in your search

    Edit: I take mine to the range about once a week and put at least 50 rounds through it, and know it pretty well. Also I do not put any .410 rounds through it. This should at least be taken into consideration when dealing with accuracy issues.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2008
  15. machinisttx

    machinisttx Well-Known Member

    If you want something in .45 Colt, a S&W M25 or 625 would be better choices. Taurus makes similar guns, and also made a couple of snubbies in .45 Colt though I think they have discontinued them.

    I'm not sure exactly what your requirements are, but I did notice that you said you and your wife both already have snubbie revolvers. There's nothing at all wrong with a 2" barreled .38 special with the right load and proper shot placement. No matter what you have or buy, proper shot placement is more important than other details.

    Pretty much any of the common defensive calibers are good choices. Beyond that, what fits your hand and shoots well for you are the determining factors.
  16. DavidVS

    DavidVS Well-Known Member

  17. ugaarguy

    ugaarguy Moderator Staff Member

    .38 snubs are difficult to shoot well. Even experienced shooters have to work hard to shoot them well. The short sight radius, small carry grips, and low weight make snubby revolvers very unforgiving to even the smallest break down in basic marksmanship.

    Put the little snubbies in the safe for a bit, and get something like a used S&W Model 10, 15, 13, 19, 64, 65, 66, or 67 (these are all K frame - medium frame - revolvers in .38 or .357, some stainless, some fixed sights, others adjustable; but essentially variants of the same gun) with a 4" bbl. You'll be shocked at how easy it is to learn to shoot one well. Practice basic marksmanship with this bigger and more forgiving gun. Then, when your skills are built up, take the snubbies back out.
    The Judge is most practical as a woods and field gun. .410 bird shot out of it is good snake medicine, and the versatility to shoot .45 Colt in the same gun takes care of bigger threats. The trade off is you deal with a long cylinder and frame making the gun front heavy, and holsters difficult to find.

    The S&W revolvers listed above, and similar offerings from Ruger and Taurus, are better all around revolvers than the Judge. .38 special target ammo is also far cheaper than .45 Colt target ammo.

    In the home where carry portability is not a concern the long gun is the way to go to defend yourself. A good 12 or 20 gauge pump shotgun with buckshot is a great low cost option. If you have deeper pockets various semi-auto carbines are excellent. However, I'll leave that for discussion over in the shotgun and rifle forums.
  18. TimboKhan

    TimboKhan Moderator

    My best friends Dad has a Judge, and he loves it. I am no particular fan of the .410 as a self-defense round, though I can see it being effective in some situations. I actually tend to agree with the idea for a shotgun in this case, though you have to aim a shotgun as well, particularly if your going to use buckshot. Does your marksmanship have to be tip-top with the shotgun? No, but you do need to learn how to use it, and that includes aiming.
  19. mgkdrgn

    mgkdrgn Well-Known Member

    I am a "Judge" owner (4" ultralite, blued), and I intend to use it for home/auto defense. The loads I intend to use are #4 buckshot in the first two holes, 000 buckshot in the last three. I want to get a pattern, not a single projectile, and I want to limit collateral damage.

    At home/auto defense ranges, the Judge is going to do just fine, IMHO. I shot the attached last week. I also have a Glock 26 and an NAA Black Widow that I use as my "carry" weapons.

    Check this thread for images of what the Judge can do with buckshot (msg 31)


    I'm attaching what it does with #4. (1 rnd, 5 paces, 1 rnd 8 paces, 2 rounds 2 paces, big holes are the wad)

    Attached Files:

  20. GEM

    GEM Well-Known Member

    Both this forum and TFL have had quite a few Judge threads if you search. Consensus is that you are better off with a standard gun and some training. The supporters regard it as having some extraordinary abilities with the 410 loads and not having to aim it. I've seen posters argue they will pick up the Judge while still sleepy and unleash a blast of semi-aimed BBs that will blind the attacker until they then pick up some other gun full of CORBONS (how impressive - not that they aren't a good load) and finish the job.

    It basically attracts the latter group for SD. I think that is a mistake.

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