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Are S&W Performance Center guns worth the extra cash?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by DocHarman, Aug 20, 2006.

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  1. DocHarman

    DocHarman Member

    Jan 29, 2006
    Lewisburg, West Virginia
    I have a chance to get a S&W PC gun at a great price, but still more expensive than a regular S&W.

    So the question is, are S&W Performance Center guns worth the extra cash?

    All input is welcome!!
  2. XavierBreath

    XavierBreath Member

    Jan 6, 2003
    Rather than pay the bucks for a Performance Center gun with a zit lock, MIM parts, and no personal attention or customization, I think I would take roughly the same money, a used Model 66, and contact Gemini Customs to have this gun built. I still salivate over cardboardkiller's Model 66. The Performance Center guns are nice, but they are not the same as a custom gun.


    There are other options out there as well for custom revolver work besides Gemini. I am thinking of having Clark's build a very similar revolver for me, just to save on shipping.


    Your question, however, is whether the PC guns are worth the extra cash over a comparable vintage revolver of the same caliber. PC guns hold their value well if cared for. They are more accurate and better fitted than the standard fare S&W produces today. They cannot hold a candle to the revolvers Smith & Wesson produced two decades ago, and are not even close to being in the same league as a pre-war S&W. If you want a real "performance" S&W consider buying an older gun. It will be less expensive and better made than a new S&W, Performance Center or not.
  3. .357 magnum

    .357 magnum Member

    Jul 20, 2006
    Omaha, NE
    Hi Doc!

    In all honesty to me they are not worth it. I purchased a new model 627 .357 mag 8 shot w/ 5inch barrel. Looks nice. Has a shorter, quicker trigger pull. Other than that nothing special at all. In my opinion I over paid for this gun, a little over 900. I will get some use out of it. Then I am trading it and I will bet I can get two quality guns for what I paid, even if I have to throw in some extra money. Doc I have shot revolvers for 30 plus years and this is not worth the money. Check out smiths 7 shot revolver models there are a number of very good products. [the model 620, 520 and the model 686 all 7, all very nice] To be totally honest with you I have a Tuarus Tracker 4 inch barrel 7 shot easily shoots just as nice as my smith performance. If you are getting a great deal such as brand new pm for say- a lot under retail or a used one in excellent condition [hell I will sell you mine] Then your situation may be different. Have a good one Doc!

    Can any of you gentlemen tell me how to start a thread? I must be the village idiot, I have not figured it out. I need to ask about the springfield XD .45 acp auto that holds 13 shots of .45 looks like a good deal. I have a new one I am lusting after for only 479.00?
  4. KurtC

    KurtC Member

    Jan 20, 2005

  5. SmithEC

    SmithEC Member

    Jul 9, 2006
    I'm new here, but I'm gonna' guess that to start a new thread, you have to hit that icon labeled New Thread.

    It's crazy the things we don't see. Maybe you're trying too hard!


    HSMITH Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    I don't think they are worth it at all. Of the several I have played with all needed an action job still, not ONE of them was anywhere near as smooth and clean as a 1950's era S&W.

    I would buy the standard gun and pay to have it done right for the same amount of money that a PC gun will cost you. I do all my own action work on S&W revolvers and my work is hands down better than the PC action jobs I have tried, if I can do it there is no excuse for the guns they ship.
  7. Bullet Bob

    Bullet Bob Member

    Feb 4, 2003
    Piedmont, NC
    Specifically, what gun are you looking at? Sometimes PC Smith's have features you can't get on the stock guns, and some are more valuable than others.
  8. ARTiger

    ARTiger Member

    Mar 6, 2006
    I've owned maybe 50 S&W revolvers of various calibers and vintages over the years including performance center stuff and vintage late 50's models. (Now have 11 of them) I wouldn't consider myself an expert by any means - there are posters on this board with encyclopedic knowledge of S&W guns - but, in my opinion I kind of consider the following as to how I rank quality of S&W revolvers:

    Gemini custom job > The best
    Great condition 50's-60's S&W> Excellent
    Current PC production> Very good to excellent
    70's, early 80's in exc. cond> very good
    Late 80's - present non-PC> fair to very good (inconsistent)

    Are the PC guns worth the money? Guess that depends on how much you have to spend. A Gemini custom is going to set you back a lot more and a standard new production version is basically a hit or miss proposition quality wise.
  9. S&Wfan

    S&Wfan Member

    Dec 17, 2005

    Are the PC guns worth it?

    IMHO, if someone likes a gun and the price is fair . . . go for it!

    Here's one I like a lot . . . and it's rarity will only cause it to climb in value . . . even though I also enjoy shooting it!!!

    The looks, and extra attention given to most of 'em also makes 'em fine guns too!!!

    Good luck on your decision!

  10. LeadPumper

    LeadPumper Member

    Dec 30, 2002
    Baltimore, MD.
    PC guns worth it?

    Definite maybe...

    Some are more worth it than others (just in case you haven't figured that out from the responses thus far), and it may very well depend on exactly which piece you're looking at and for what purpose.

    Generally the fit and finish of (current) PC guns is better than (current) stock guns, they have chamfered cylinders, special grips, cylinders or barrels, and usually have better triggers. (older PC guns are better still)

    note: Yes, even the PC shops puts out lemons once in awhile. I had a 629-5 that boke the SA sear because it was 'polished' too much at the factory. The PC shop however has a great repair policy and they replaced it free of charge (including shipping both ways).

    Here's a pic (I hemmed and hawed for a week before buying it, now it's one of my favorites):

    as always, YMMV.

  11. JoeHatley

    JoeHatley Member

    Dec 27, 2002
    I think so. Resale value alone will more than offset the higher initial cost.



  12. Smurfslayer

    Smurfslayer Member

    Dec 25, 2002
    Northern Virginia, USA
    You're asking a question that ONLY the buyer can legitimately answer...

    I have 2 PC S&W's, one S&W with PC work on it and 2 stock S&W's.
    They're good, but $900 good? I still have my doubts, but I'd bet that my $900 went a lot further with my 627 than it would with a 1911...

    Plus, my hands aren't sore from "tap, rack, bang" after each session :neener:
  13. gringolet

    gringolet Member

    May 9, 2005
    another vote for custom

    I got to go with buying a standard and sending it to a pistolsmith...
    check out
    this is exceptional work done one-on-one
    for you as the customer...
    craftsmanship is not yet gone.
  14. sc1911cwp

    sc1911cwp Member

    Jan 11, 2004
    The Lowcountry
    Whatever you decide to do whether it is to buy a PC gun or have custom work performed on another gun, both are only worth what someone is willing to pay for one. An advantage of a PC gun is that it retains a lifetime warrenty. S&W will not repair, from what they stated it me, any gun where the work was not done by them. I own a PC 460 and sent my 610 in to have an action job. They are both great guns and I really enjoy them. Plus to boot, I was the second owner of the 610 and they performed warrenty work on it twice at no cost.
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