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A solid ccw revolver?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by pablo45, Apr 11, 2007.

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  1. pablo45

    pablo45 Member

    Apr 28, 2006
    I am not too familiar with alot of revolver's. Just lately i have been getting into them alot more an enjoying the experiance of a wheel gun. My question is what is a good concealable snub that will not run too much in price but be pretty solid for what I pay? I know I pay for what I get, but what should I get?
  2. IrvJr

    IrvJr Member

    Jan 6, 2003

    I have recently switched over to using revolvers almost exclusively. I have tried and own several different guns and at the moment, I prefer the Smith & Wesson J-frames in .38 special/.357 special. They are small, reliable, well-made and you can get one at a decent price (much less than a semi auto).

    If you're budget conscious, there are a lot of good used S&W J-frames for sale. Also, the new guns are not too bad (when compared to new semi-autos) either.

    the S&W airweights (aluminum frame, steel cylinder, .38 sp +P rating) retail for about $500, but I've seen them for sale (new) at some local shops for a lot less (under $400). The S&W all steel J-frames (like the model 60 that I recently bought) retail for about $675, but I bought one new for about $480 locally).

    I also own a Ruger SP101 revolver. It is slightly (but not much noticeably) larger than the S&W and is built like a tank. It is available with a 2" and 3" barrel. In my experience, my SP101 is not as nicely finished as the S&W but it is also a very good revolver. However, it's slightly bulkier than a S&W J frame and there are less accessories available (holsters and grips) than the J-frame guns. I prefer my J-frames to my SP101 because of their lighter weight and slighly better fit and finish.
  3. denfoote

    denfoote Member

    Dec 25, 2002
    Near the border of occupied Azlan and Mexico.
    My current carry revolver is a Taurus M85SSUL.
    I have had it for 10 years. It was purchased new by my wife in 1997 and she found that she did not like it and gave it to me.
    Over the years, it has been reliable and is +P rated. It also costs less than the comperable Smith.
    I have often though about getting a Smith J-frame, but I always decide to just keep and carry that little Taurus!!
  4. AStone

    AStone Member

    Aug 5, 2005
    Far N, E coast
    Three digits


    But then, the time stamp of this post
    reveals my other choice of caliber for a revolver.

  5. mnrivrat

    mnrivrat Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    Type of carry will help narrow your search.

    If pocket carry , then I think you will find the airlite's to be a better choice than steel frame guns. If either IWB or OWB weight won't make as much difference + the steel frames ,with their extra weight , will help tame the recoil of +P or .357 mag cartridges.

    S&W & Taurus are the top two makers in this field but the Ruger Sp 101 has a strong following for waist band carry. My one brother carries an old Charter arms .38 Spl and that has served him very well. Another brother carries a S&W 60 with a belt clip and I carry a Taurus Ti in .32 mag. for pocket carry.

    All have been good choices (IMO) and work well for the particular method used to carry, and all have been 100% reliable.
  6. bestseller92

    bestseller92 Member

    Nov 7, 2005
    Ruger Sp101. Simply the best.
  7. ATW525

    ATW525 Member

    Aug 8, 2006
    Colebrook, NH
    I've had good luck with my Taurus 650 CIA, which is a 2" barreled steel framed .357 Magnum with an enclosed hammer. I believe it cost me ~$300. I gave a Taurus 85UL to a lady friend, which has also been a good performer (I'm talking about the gun, though the lady friend hasn't been bad either :p ). The 85UL is a 2" barreled aluminum framed .38 special with an exposed hammer, and it cost me a little less than the 650.

    S&W 642/442 are probably the definitive carry revolvers. I don't personally own one yet, but I have a 442 on order and it's costing me ~$380. They are both sub 2" barreled aluminum framed .38 specials with enclosed hammers. The difference is the 642 has stainless components and the 442 has blued carbon steel components.

    There's probably about a half pound difference in weight between a steel framed and aluminum framed five shot snubby from either S&W or Taurus.
  8. ARTiger

    ARTiger Member

    Mar 6, 2006
    642 for pocket carry or SP101 for belt carry. Check out our 642 Club thread - it's probably the most definitive source available on small revolver carry.
  9. Reddbecca

    Reddbecca Member

    Apr 1, 2007
    There use to be a time when I would criticize the Airweight revolvers, where I wouldn't be caught dead with them. If it wasn't built of steel then I didn't want it because it wouldn't stand up to regular use and recoil would be unpleasent, if not downright painful.

    Of course that all changed when I hurt my back, trying to carry my Security Six in a cheap shoulder holster. It was then that I realized just what these lightweight snubnose revolvers were for, what their purpose was.

    I'm still gonna try for a Ruger SP101, but I wouldn't be beyond getting and S&W snubnose if the price is reasonable. Whatever the choice it'll likely never see the kind of regular use that I put my other guns through.
  10. Ala Dan

    Ala Dan Member in memoriam

    Dec 24, 2002
    Home Of The First Capitol Of The Confederate State
    For a better trigger pull, may I suggest a quality (used but not abused)
    Smith & Wesson (old model) 60 in .38 Special only~! 642's are great in
    their own right (pocket carry); but the majority of 'em have horrible
    triggers~!:uhoh: :scrutiny: ;)
  11. glockman19

    glockman19 Member

    Mar 16, 2007

    Easiest to conceal. Enough stopping power. not all that expensive. As Ala Dan conveys, trigger needs working in. Get some snap caps and pull it a coouple hundred times. Mine started feeling better around pull 600 and by 1,000 was much better.
  12. ronto

    ronto Member

    Jul 4, 2006
    Smack Dab in the Middle of Nowhere.
    Ruger .357 Magnum DAO SP101

    About as "solid" as you can get.
  13. 19-3Ben

    19-3Ben Member

    Nov 5, 2006
    Concealable, solid, low price = Ruger SP101.

    I don't have the broad range of experience that some others here do, but in my own experience, there is no other small frame revolver that I trust to be as strong.
  14. ChefJeff1

    ChefJeff1 Member

    Jan 8, 2004
    Mountains of Idaho
    I'm in the same boat as the rest. Model 38 and an sp101. The j-frame is so easily concealed and I reserve the sp101 for when I want magnum capabilities. I saw a great option for you in the guns for sale section on this site, It was a model 36 38 special, blue, with the hammer.
  15. Diamondback

    Diamondback Member

    Aug 23, 2003
    WA State
    These all would be good solid choices depending upon what you can find available and your "patience factor" for looking and waiting for a good deal : a lightly used, well maintained S&W J Frame (models 36/60, 37/637, 442/642, 49/649, 38/638) or K frame (models 10/64, 15, 19/66, 13/65); any of the small frame Taurus revolvers ( examples : M85/85UL/851 and the 605 variants); any current Rossi small frame revolver; and Ruger models SP101 and GP100....or a used Ruger Six series revolver (Security Service, Speed).

    To get an idea of cost.......a used, well cared for S&W J frame Model 36 should cost you in the neighborhood of about $285, if you look around; a used K frame Model 10 about the same, perhaps a bit less; the new Taurus Model 85's typically sell for around $270; the Rossi's cost about $250; and a new Ruger SP101 sells for about $419. Add tax (local) or transfer/shipping fees on to these prices, which are approximate, and will vary some from region to region.

    I would not feel uncomfortable with using any of the above as a concealed carry weapon.

    - regards
  16. fiVe

    fiVe Member

    Jan 7, 2003
    West Florida Panhandle
    Another vote for the 642 (of course, my opinion is somewhat prejudiced) :D
  17. moxie

    moxie Member

    Dec 30, 2002
    Erath Co., TX
    You've pretty much described the SP-101.

  18. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

    Nov 25, 2006
    Northeast PA, USA
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2007
  19. MassMark

    MassMark Member

    Mar 20, 2007
    Western MA
    There Is No Other....

  20. GRIZ22

    GRIZ22 Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    Go to a well stocked gunshop and look at S&W, Ruger, and Taurus. Colts are only available used. I've seen and have some Charter Arms that are okay but not as good as the others in my opinion. Don't just look at J frame guns but K & L size frames as well. the larger guns are not that mucj more difficult to conceal and a lot easier to shoot well. Many like the Airweight, Ultra Lite, made from moonmetal guns that can weigh as little as 9 oz. I would avoid them as an aluminum gun had about twice the recoil as a steel gun. That might make them 4 times as hard to learn to shoot well. Beware of anyone who tells you "only the blank revolver is the answer to your situation". If it's a salesman they are trying to unload that model. What works for me may not work for you. I carry S&W K frames (2 1/2 and 4 inch), 2" J frames (I do like the 3" Detective Special I have the extra inch of barrel makes a difference), and a Ruger Speed Six 2 3/4.

    As I said these work for me you just have to look and see what works for you
  21. md7

    md7 Member

    Aug 18, 2006
    i like the smith wesson 642 and 638 j frame revolvers. they are light, i think they are affordable, easy to pocket carry, and in my limited experience, reliable. the 642 is hammerless and has a pretty stout trigger when new. the 638 has a shrouded hammer so it reduces the chances of snagging, but still allows for cocking so you could shoot it in single action. i personally like the 642. i think for most up close and personal defensive situations you would not have time to think about cocking the hammer anyway. ruger sp 101 is also a very solid gun, but a little big for me to pocket carry.
  22. Jorg Nysgerrig

    Jorg Nysgerrig Member

    Apr 13, 2006
    A .457? I'm sure the people on the east coast are wondering about your .657 as well.

    Time stamps are relative. ;)
  23. jt1

    jt1 Member

    Feb 26, 2007
    WA State
    pablo45 - You just can't go wrong with a X42. Go to a well stocked gun store and spend some time comparing side by side. You will find something that suits you.

    .357--.657, I'll have one of each please.
  24. Doug Add

    Doug Add Member

    Apr 10, 2003
    North Carolina
    Personally, I am not comfortable shooting the lighter frame revolvers, and pocket carry will never work for me for ergonomic reasons.

    When I am not carrying my SIG P228, I have a 2.25" Ruger SP101 in a belt holster. It easily handles .357, and shooting .38 +P through it is quite easy on the hand, even after many, many rounds.

    Holsters may be harder to come by for it, but a 2.75" Ruger Security/Speed/Police Service Six would be a solid, reliable carry gun for not a lot of cash.

    My father-in-law has a 4" Police Service Six and it is an excellent revolver.
  25. C-grunt

    C-grunt Member

    Jun 12, 2005
    Phoenix Az
    Around here the 642/442 goes for a little under 350 and the Taurus 85 goes for around 300. I cant remember the price on the sp101 but I believe they were under 400.
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