Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by ohihunter2014, Oct 22, 2017.
I don't plan on competing with 357 just would like that option.
I'm going to second those who've recommended used S&Ws. While I have opinions on the 586s/686s, I'm going to say only that a used K-frame (Model 19 or 66) might just be what you're looking for ... you say target shooting (presumably you want adjustable sights), not competition, so you may to make the rounds of all the LGSs, pawnshops and regional gun forums/websites to get an idea of what's out there. I found, for the princely sum of $395, this baby (a 19-3 with only a tad bit of wear/pitting on front site, but superb lock-up and accuracy):
Frankly, as far as the used market goes, I'd favor S&Ws over Ruger. As stated previously by one member, the Speed SIx/Security Six market is drying up quickly with ridiculous asking prices lately, and as robust as the GP-100s are, the Smith K-frame is lighter, points and feels better, and typically is more accurate.
Side note, my brother has a early '90s Taurus 66 (back when the company did nice bluing with more discreet role-marks) which, although the internals are not as nicely finished as a comparable S&W, has provided excellent performance and darn good accuracy. Can't speak to recent Taurus revolvers, but I've gone through a couple 85s and an 82, all were worthy pieces and hardly "junk" (kinda think the way you phrased your opinion of Taurus in the OP invited the usual brand-basher suspects to come in).
For the purpose of target shooting I would actually be looking for a 6" gun for the longer sight radius. I would be looking for a Model 19 or 66 myself. I dearly love my 4.2" SP101, but the GP100 doesn't do anything for me.
I'm not saying it's the only choice but it was a good choice for me, I bought a used 4" S&W M686-2 for $500 a few years back. I feel its the best mid-size .357 Magnum revolver available today.
If you would rather a new revolver Charter Arms is making very high quality revolvers again now that the Ecker family is back at the helm. Their 4.2" Stainless Full Mag Pug has a full retail of $470 and can be found for under ~$420 in the stores.
I would choose a S&W 686 or 66 mainly due to the easy availability of repair parts for diy repairs.
there is a s&w model 28 w/4" bbl on gunbroker for $650 right now.
I have a Security six with adjustable sights and a spring kit. It is very accurate and reliable. I hade a older Taurus and a six inch Tracker. The Ruger is more accurate in my hands but the Tracker is nice.
My understanding is that the OP wanted a target revolver. If that is the case, the most affordable option for a new, out-of-the-box ready to go compete revolver is the Ruger Match Champion. It is designed to be a match ready shooter without the need to buy anything else to make it so. No need for extra springs and all. It is chambered in .357 but is a pussycat with .38 wadcutters, but will cut the bullseye out with 158 grain Magnums, non the less. The problem with many used guns is that they may need additional work to get competition ready, with parts and springs and such.
The GP100 Match Champion’s action has been factory tuned, the trigger and hammer are shimmed to be centered in the frame, the double action pull has been slicked up by the factory to be very smooth with no stacking. The single action is superb. the cylinder face has been “melted” in a true radius and not a simple bevel to facilitate re-holstering, the barrel profile was altered by Ruger and has been lightened to make pointing easier. The revolver is around 34 ounces and fits the hand like a glove. The original has a fixed Novak rear sight factory regulated to put .357 Magnums dead on (POI = POA). The second model has adjustable rear sight that you can dial in for .38 Special 148 grain wadcutter target loads.
As I said in my earlier post, the Match Champion was engineered from the ground up to go head-to-head with S&W’s Performance Center 686 SSR but at a lower price point. Mine will consistently outshoot both my 1960’s underlugged Colt Trooper 3-5-7 that was Magnaported and set up for competition and an early 70’s S&W model 27 with 5” barrel.
I selected the original model with rough duty fixed rear sight as a woods carry gun since I only shoot 158 grain and 180 grain Magnums in it. My requirement was not for target shooting, but I wanted the best sidearm for ridge walking with an affordable price tag. I’ve not been disappointed.
New, probably the Ruger Match Champion is the best value.
Used, a S&W 14/15/19/66/67. It can take some careful browsing around, but there are still some deals to be had. The 68s/27/28s that I've seen have been a bit pricey.
I've seen a couple of Colt Troopers recently that looked like not-bad deals, but they didn't time up properly.
Of course, if you can start with just a .38, there ar good deals on classic Smiths. If you are not tied to adjustable sights and 357 there are better deals on 38s than 357s right now. Example:
4" of classic K-Frame 38 goodness for <$300.
Just to add to this post, I bought a well used but mechanical sound S&W M10 seven years ago for just under $200 and I'm extremely happy I bought it. I can not tell you how many hours of fun it's given me way lots if fun every range trip. I have several .357 Magnums but my M10 is great!
I have a couple of GP100s, one being the 4.2" match champion model, and I highly recommend the Ruger revolvers. They feel right and I love the looks, more rugged looking than a Smith and no Hillary hole or side plate to distract the eye. It is my belief that Ruger makes a better barrel, and Smith makes a better out of the box trigger, but the Ruger smooths up over time to match the Smith trigger.
The Smith guns are certainly quality as well but there is just something comforting about the big honkin' hunks of Ruger steel.
My Tracker works for me.
Yes, the S&W 38 Special K frames (Models 10, 14 and 15) are great revolvers. Personally, I prefer adjustable sights (Model 14 and Model 15) on my revolvers, but the Model 10 is the ubiquitous police revolver from the middle 1900s or so (plus/minus). You cannot go wrong with a Model 10, 14 or 15 S&W revolver.
An 8-3/8" barrel Model 14 is on my bucket list that has not been filled yet. Someday .
If you have your heart set on a Smith and Wesson revolver than I recommend you save the money until you can afford it. Substitutions will only make you realize that you made a bad decision.
I like adjustable sights too but when this revolver came along I could not resist. I bought it from a retired Constable, it was his service sidearm for over 35 years. It's not really a M10, it's a real M&P from 1948 which is when he started service. He even gave me his holster and all for only $150. I didn't even think of the sights lol.
Here it is with my M36 Chief's Special
being in ohio AND wanting a "target gun" I would look at a 5-6 inch- preferably the 6 inch - the six inch will be easier to shoot accurately for most AND be deer legal in case ya ever decide to try it. You already have a ccw revolver so I would go 6 inch I would go ruger, smith,colt or dab wesson...
A S&W 66 is pretty nice, ours mostly sees 125-158gr .38 spl though. For regular .357 I prefer the slightly heavier and larger 586/686. Back in the day when deciding between a GP100 and 586, the S&W felt nicer in my hand. Try them both to see what may tick that buy box.
Used S&W M-28 if shooting .357s is your plan.
I paid about $600 after shipping and transfer for my 4" 686-0 within the past year and would do it again in a heart beat.
What's your budget? Security Six's seem to go the cheapest, then GP100's, and around here Smith's are still pretty high.
My buddy scored a 90% good condition M10 for $250 about 8yrs ago. shoots pretty well also but they point odd for me.
If i started hunting with a pistol it would be 44mag I have my dads old CPD holster that is for a s&w i was hoping to find something that would fit it.
$450-under. like to find a used one for that price.
IMHO, the greater fit & finish S&W used to enjoy over Ruger is a thing of the past. In a newer gun, the S&W 686 and Ruger GP are equals but I'll take the Ruger. If I'm buying a S&W, it's going to be an older gun.
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