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Ruger or Smith and Wesson?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by miatchguy, Jun 26, 2003.


Ruger or Smith and Wesson

  1. S&W 686 8"

    140 vote(s)
  2. Ruger GP100 6"

    207 vote(s)
  1. miatchguy

    miatchguy Well-Known Member

    I've asked around in other forums trying to see what a good .357 to buy is, I shopped around and I've found two that I can't decide between, a Ruger GP100 6" and an S&W 686 8". :confused: Could you all tell me which one you like and why? Maybe even let me know of another .357 one that you like.
  2. Erich

    Erich Well-Known Member

    If I wanted a long-tube .357, I'd be happy with either of those. The Smith would have a better trigger (or, at least, every stock 686 I've ever handled has had a better trigger than every GP I've ever handled). The Ruger might be slightly more robust.

    Sorry, dude, you're going to have to make a command-level decision on this one.
  3. miatchguy

    miatchguy Well-Known Member

    Thanks man, I've been asking around for 2 or 3 days now, no one can convince me which one is better. I know this is the last thing you should go by when buying a gun but I'm gonna have to go with the one that looks better, I'm gonna have to go with the 686. Thanks alot, but in any case, as soon as I get some extra money I can also buy the Ruger.:D
  4. miatchguy

    miatchguy Well-Known Member

    BTW, your name is Eric H.; name's Eric H. too, Eric Houser; that's what I go by anyway, just thought it was funny.
  5. Poohgyrr

    Poohgyrr Well-Known Member

    I prefer Smith's, but Ruger's aren't bad. For general purpose, I also prefer a 4" to maybe 6" barrel. For hunting or target, that 8" might be better.
  6. E357

    E357 Well-Known Member

    The general feeling is that the Ruger is somewhat stronger and the Smith usually has a better trigger. What will be your primary use? That 8 inch tube is long and heavy.

  7. 10-Ring

    10-Ring Well-Known Member

    I like the S&W's because there is just so much fine tuning you can do w/ that trigger ;)
  8. NEtracker

    NEtracker Well-Known Member


    I have the 686 4 inch.
    The longer barrel version will most likely have just as nice a trigger out of the box.:cool:
  9. Jim March

    Jim March Well-Known Member

    The balance of the GP100 6" with the short shroud is amazing. Stable, but fast-handling. If part of what you want for a "woods gun" is something that can clear leather and point quick for cougar, boar or black bear at bad breath range, the 6" Ruger short-shroud will handle a lot better than that 8" S&W.

    Other issues: if it's a wilderness survival gun, the Ruger is tougher and can be field-stripped without tools if it gets dropped in gunk or something.

    If I was taking one gun deep into the woods to "do everything", it wouldn't even be a question as to which was more likely to get me home in one piece.
  10. YodaVader

    YodaVader Well-Known Member

    I have owned both at the same time back in the late 80's. The 686 was a 6" and the GP100 was a 4" stainless version. The Smith definitely had the better single action trigger - crisp and creep free. I shot the same loads through both guns , did not have special super duty Ruger loads. If I needed more than what the 357 offered in power I could go up to 44 mag or 444 Marlin. Both were extremely accurate. Probably would take a Ransom Rest or mounting a scope and using a benchrest to see which was more accurate - and then only with certain loads. To fire a few groups with a load or two and then to declare one being more accurate would not be a real test of the revolvers true accuracy potential.

    The Ruger takedown to me was a pain in the rear. For cleaning purposes on the Smith you remove one screw and the cylinder/yoke assembly slides out and then separates. The Ruger yoke/cylinder slides out and does not separate once you have it out.

    I liked the Smith's rear sight better - had much more precise feeling adjustments. Plus you can use the same tool to adjust both windage and elevation , where with Ruger you have to use two different size screwdirvers. I liked the Ruger front sight better , black serrated ramp. The Smith bubble gum insert front sight was like some kind of hold over from the Dirty Harry days. The GP 100 grips fit me very well - probably one of the reasons I was able to shoot it nearly as well as the Smith despite the less than ideal single action trigger pull. I like the double actions of both guns although I fired the Smith far more than the Ruger in double action.

    With that said today my only 357 revolver is a 686. Still would not mind having a GP100 to compliment the 686 like I did 15 years ago! Both good guns!
  11. Hkmp5sd

    Hkmp5sd Well-Known Member

    You can use my method when I faced that choice. Get both! :)

    However, I like the Ruger better.
  12. miatchguy

    miatchguy Well-Known Member

    That is a great quote man.
  13. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

    I'd save my pennies for a pre-agreement Smith & Wesson. I don't do business with companies that seek to subvert the Bill of Rights.
  14. miatchguy

    miatchguy Well-Known Member

    Ok, I haven't been into this stuff very long; I keep hearing about this agreement S&W made with the anti-gun people, could someone tell me what it is?:confused:
  15. Nick96

    Nick96 Well-Known Member

    Since the poll results are so close (slight edge to Ruger), both are about the same size & weight, Ruger's cost less and are considered to be somewhat more durable than the S&W - the logical choice would seem to be Ruger.
  16. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

    Ruger. Tougher design.
  17. Leaky Waders

    Leaky Waders Well-Known Member

    I chose a 686...mines 4" though and very accurate.

    If I were choosing between those two models I would most likely choose the ruger due to the barrel length - all things being equal.

    I own quite a few rugers (just none of their double action revolvers). I think they are both good guns.

    Before you buy you may want to check Jim March's revolver check out link - it's awesome.


    PS I posted a link to the agreement issue in your other post.
  18. Ala Dan

    Ala Dan Member in memoriam

    Tough Choice-

    but I voted for the Smith & Wesson 686 (six shot) model!

    Best Wishes,
    Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
  19. denfoote

    denfoote Well-Known Member

    I still dislike S&W for political reasons!!
  20. miatchguy

    miatchguy Well-Known Member

    Ok, but from now on when you vote, only vote on the quality of the gun, don't let anything the companies have done affect that.

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