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Benefits of the revolver

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by FerFAL, Oct 3, 2007.

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  1. FerFAL

    FerFAL Member

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    Owed this one to BullfrogKen;):
    First of all, revolvers are perfect for teaching a new shooter firearms basics. You load the cylinder, close it, pull the trigger and it goes bang. After that it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that you can cock the hammer ( the one you saw going up when firing DA) with the thumb to fire much more accurate SA shots. In the eyes of the newbie, the revolver is simple, understandable, unlike the auto pistol where they don’t fully understand what’s going on in there.
    Of course this simplicity is mostly apparent, nothing simple about a revolver’s clockwork. A person with some basic skills will find it much easier to work on most pistols than with a broken revolver. Fixing autos such as 1911, High Powers and Glocks is just a matter of replacing a spring or part here, cutting off one or two curls of another spring there, filing or bending some other part.
    Once the initial steps are taken, most beginners will soon find out that they shoot better with autos ( though there are some exceptions).
    This is when the “auto era” beings for the shooter, and it takes some time for him to appreciate some of the revolvers advantages.

    1) Yes, ammo doesn’t affect the feeding process one bit, since it uses the mechanical force you apply, not the power generated by the fired round. One dud round is quickly left behind with another trigger pull.

    2) You don’t have to worry about feeding reliability as in autos. Some autos ( 1911 and hardball) have a hard time feeding anything that steps aside from the round it was originally intended to feed. Most modern autos feed most popular brands of ammo, but its still something to be concerned about none the less.

    3) The basic simplicity of not having levers and safeties to mess around with. New shooters looking for a self defense gun will benefit from this if they have to use the weapon in self defense under stress, where they might forget to turn the safety off, even fire on an empty chamber. That wont happen with a revolver. As long as it’s loaded, it will fire. Experienced shooters also appreciate this feature, which modern autos such as the Glock emulate, but even though they got rid of the safety, the empty chamber possibility is still there if you are not consistent with your gun handling habits and training.

    4) Same trigger pull all the time. You don’t have one long first DA pull, and lighter SA follow up shots, which could alter your point shooting accuracy. They are all the same. This is also something modern autos such as the Glock have copied. This point is a bit academic though, when under stress you wont even notice the “long” DA pull, and unlike target practice you are looking to hit your target in the center of it’s chest or head, not mumbling about ½” groups. Still, the advantage is there regarding having the same trigger pull all the time.

    5) You don’t have any springs working under high tensions when the gun is not being used. Fully loaded auto pistol magazines that are left sitting there for years may work ok or not ( tough there have been 1911 mags that have been left fully loaded since WWII and still worked perfectly). Check them regularly, buy quality mags and you should have not problem even if you leave it there for a year or two, checking every now and then to make sure it works.
    Yet again, it is not something you have to worry about if you have revolver. Just leave it loaded and you know it wont malfunction due to a mag spring loosing strength.
    I find this particularly useful for secondary handguns locked at other places around the house. My guns are in my bedroom in the second floor, so I keep a 4” 357 magnum locked in a trunk in the first floor in case I’m in the lower floor and I don’t have time, or hear strange noises up stairs.

    6) From a logistic point of view, loosing/braking your auto’s magazine turns your pistol into a pitiful single shot. This will never happen with a revolver.

    7) The utter simplicity of a revolver’s handling is also useful in case you have to arm someone else during an emergency. As long as the person knows the basic safety rules ( Treat the gun as if loaded, finger off the trigger guard until you are ready to shoot, NEVER aim it at anything you are not willing to destroy) you can leave a person with a revolver, knowing that there no safety, empty chamber or FTF that could show up.
    8) In the snubby category revolvers offer reliability, excellent size/power ratio as well as the no frills operation typical of all revolvers.
    There are small pocket out pistols out there, 380 ACP and 9mm loaded with premium ammo will work just a well, but for pocket carry it’s hard to beat the snubby.
    I like them particularly as back up guns, but if your live in a rather safe place where there’s no serious criminal activity, no history of multiple attackers as in organized professional criminals or gang activity, then the snubby revolver might be a good compromise for your defensive needs as long as you understand it’s limitations.

    9) Guns are not only intended for self defense, as a hunting /trail gun, it’s very hard to beat as long as you don’t have to worry much about 2 legged vermin.
    357 and 44 magnum revolvers, just to name the most popular calibers, can be loaded with a plethora of bullet weights and shapes for the most different needs, even load it with CCI shotshells for snakes ( there’s CCI shot for autos to, but don’t expect it to cycle the slide)

    10) Yes, even if you don’t like admitting it there’s that nostalgia revolvers have. Old revolvers are simply cool in my book. Those older Smiths and Colts, not only work as a clock but also have a history behind them. True works of art.

    FerFAL
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2007
  2. tinygnat219

    tinygnat219 Member

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    Still at most only 5-6 shots. Give me my 17 every time
     
  3. AntiqueCollector

    AntiqueCollector Member

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    I can reload my topbreaks almost as quick as most can reload their semi-autos. But nonetheless, I've never felt undergunned with 5 or 6 shots, even from cap and ball revolvers which I carry rather frequently. Most self-defense situations don't need that many shots anyways. I'll take power, simplicity and reliability anyday over a semi-auto's higher capacity...
     
  4. Mot45acp

    Mot45acp Member

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    Paragraphs are your friend.
    After a $100 3 month "warranty" job from S&W just to make it function, I have reconsidered the reliability factor of a revolver
     
  5. Fishman777

    Fishman777 Member

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    Revolvers for home defense...

    I agree with that the revovler is the best home defense handgun.

    Don't get me wrong, I do like semis, but I prefer revolvers because of there durability, reliability, accuracy, and flexibility. With one .357 revolver you can shoot ammo that has ballistic overlap with everything from .38 acp all the way up to .41 magnum. It is also a gun that anyone in my house could use if they had to. If you're single, or if your spouse is into guns, semis are a great choice for home defense, but if your spouse isn't a gun person, you are pretty darn selfish if you buy a bunch semi autos and expect them to defend themselves with a semi. If someone is trying to kill or assualt them, are they really going to remember to rack the slide to chamber a round? If the primer doesn't ignite, are they going to remember to rack the slide again? I could go on and on. There is too much to keep track of if you aren't a gun enthusiast. If someone is try to defend themselves, a revolver is the simplest defense.

    For all of the reasons listed in this thread, revolvers will always be the cornerstone of my handgun collection.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2007
  6. Fishman777

    Fishman777 Member

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    reconsidering revolver reliability...

    You shouldn't write off revolver reliability, but maybe you should reconsider your make and model. Not all designs have to be frequently shipped back to the manufacturer for warranty repairs.

    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0BTT/is_149_24/ai_65910639

    http://www.grantcunningham.com/blog_files/448400adaed4f0a82d4961b5b2d91d8b-116.html

    http://www.gunweek.com/2004/feature1010.html

    Yes, I'm a Ruger guy, but I didn't start off as one. After reading some posts and talking to a few people, I assumed Colts and Smiths were the only revolvers worth buying. Colts and Smiths are better than Rugers in some areas, but certainly not in reliability and durability. If you are looking for a race gun, by all means take a long hard look at the Colts and Smiths, but if you are looking for something that will last and last and last, go with a SA or DA Ruger. You could get a great trigger job on GP100 and still pay less than you would with a Colt or a Smith.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2007
  7. AntiqueCollector

    AntiqueCollector Member

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    I've always done my own repairs and gunsmithing on my revolvers.
     
  8. wheelgunslinger

    wheelgunslinger Member

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    If you believe in the "big and fast bullet" theory, then revolvers are king in the great comparison of pistol v wheelgun

    If you believe that placement is key: then you shouldn't need to be carrying a bucket of ammo with you to feel safe, unless you live in an area where you'll be taking on street gangs.

    If you have non gunnies in your household who have no idea what all the dooflotchies on a pistol do, it's easy for them to put a revolver into service should they need it.

    And, revolvers are classy.
     
  9. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I'm faster and more accurate with the right wheelgun, and I value speed and accuracy over capacity any day of the week. Also, wheelguns aim more naturally. When I draw and aim my Speed Six is always on target, whereas a semi with its odd architecture can be pointed off to one side or the other.
     
  10. Muzzy_B

    Muzzy_B Member

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    I halfway agree with you. While I'd prefer one of my revolvers over a semi-auto for HD, I'd rather have the 870 12ga in my hands if the SHTF at home.
     
  11. sm

    sm member

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    Great Input folks!

    Accept the fact no firearm is ever big enough, and one will never have too many rounds.
    Then do other training and not focus on guns and round count being the answer to every situation.

    Revolvers : Self contained. I have never showed up with a Revolver and because I brought the wrong magazines, could not shoot the revolver.
    No revolver ammo, yes, wrong mags, no. :)

    New Shooters, especially those with kids, often feel safer with a revolver, they can visually inspect, unload, reload, maintain and everything a revolver allows one to do, where a semi-auto does not.

    I am NOT going to dismiss, or undermine anyones concerns about Safety.
    I will listen, I will educate, and I will share.
    Still if a new shooter, feels safer with a revolver, I respect that!

    Gun fit is easier to tweak with different stocks/ grips.
    Correct basic and fundamentals I also agree are best learned with a revolver.

    My take is well known around here.


    Great thread topic.


    Aside- many dismiss "old stuff" and need being "fast" or "having the quantity".

    Nobody ever fussed about a Kitchen Match and Candle when the power goes out...unless they don't have these.

    ;)
     
  12. Fishman777

    Fishman777 Member

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    Please excuse the typos and grammar

    I just read through this thread and was stunned by my grammatical errors!!

    Please excuse my carelessness.
     
  13. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    First of all, I know I'll take flak for saying the revolver is not as reliable as many say it is. Having said that:

    1. Revolvers are available in cartridges you don't normally find in automatics -- such as .357 Magnum, .45 Colt and .44 Magnum (yes there are exceptions and some similar cartridges designed for automatics, but in general if you want one of those, go with a revolver.)

    2. Revolvers can accept a wider range of loads -- in .357, I can hunt squirrels and rabbits with a powder-puff .38 Special load, and then carry a 125 grain full power load for self defense, or go to a 158 grain or 180 grain bullet for deer.

    3. Revolvers don't spit your brass all over the landscape.

    4. Revolvers tend to have better out-of-the-box triggers than automatics.
     
  14. pinkymingeo

    pinkymingeo Member

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    Concerns about round count are silly in my book. In a face-off between a guy with a 17-round 9mm semi and a guy with two rounds of 12ga buckshot in his double, my money's on the shotgun.
     
  15. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Except that the bucko with the 12 ga double actually has a minimum of 18 pellets at his command -- one more than the guy with the 17-round 9mm Semi.
     
  16. ronto

    ronto Member

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    More than one round can be fired from a coat pocket with a spurless revolver...Walking in a dark parking lot with your hand in your coat pocket and on your CCW, BG approaches with bad intentions... Surprise, surprise.
    BTW, your coat won't start on fire...It's been proven.
     
  17. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    On the other hand, if you're wearing Thunderwear (tm), you could wind up with an interesting tatoo.
     
  18. lanternlad1

    lanternlad1 Member

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    Or a higher singing voice...
     
  19. FLORIDA KEVIN

    FLORIDA KEVIN Member

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    I feel that revolvers are better for defense because the manual of arms is simpler ! If you are going to rely on a gun you must be able to have it function reliably! So it works when you are under stress !!
     
  20. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Well, the revolver manual of arms is simpler until you have to reload. A quick reload under pressure is a rather complicated evolution.
     
  21. Hawk

    Hawk Member

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    I'm rather new with revolvers. The perspective of a relative noob is that they have some endearing qualities and some not so endearing qualities.

    It has been stated by people smarter than I that defensive revolvers should be rendered DAO. The range babes will kick sand in your face if you fire your DA revolver single action. Hence, revolver triggers suck. Some DA triggers suck less than others but next to a well executed 1911 they all suck. I've been working on my double action fu but the results are not encouraging.

    When a revolver jams it really jams. Most of mine were purchased used so that skews the results but when an ejector rod backs out you'll learn a whole new vocabulary. They may not jam as often as some semi-autos but they make up for it by doing so in 20 minute stretches.

    Some revolvers have screws. Most semis have pins. The difference, so far as I can tell, is that one needn't apply blue thread-locker to pins. Revolver screws are like car tires – they should be checked routinely before going out lest the ejector assembly in a SAA clone launch itself downrange at odd moments. Crane retaining cups in Colt double actions can be installed upside down and backwards by previous owners. The good folks at THR (Hi, Fuff, Defariswheel!) will sort it out but it's perplexing at first. I don’t have a Ruger DA yet – I understand they're not much for screws. I would probably like that.

    Revolvers shoot cool stuff. Semis are available that shoot .357, .41 and .44 magnum but they're not what I would call elegant. GP100s, 686s, 57s, Pythons and Anacondas are elegant.

    Revolvers remain inexpensive for what you get, at least compared to some 1911 types.

    Revolvers are great for saving brass for reloading. Good thing, too. Things like .41 pretty much need to be reloaded to stay out of the poor house. Most semi rounds, even the premium persuasion, are cheaper.

    The manual of arms is simple but I don’t find them all that much easier for newcomers. Possibly a combination of a grotty double action pull with the alternative being a newcomer waving the muzzle around while thumb cocking. One's difficult; the other's scary.

    Some of the advantages I see invoked I accept strictly as an article of faith. Chief among these is the ability to shoot from one’s pocket. I am quite incapable of conjuring a situation where I would wish to do so, apart from zombies of course, and it's not totally clear that a semi wouldn't manage to work in similar far-fetched conditions. Regardless of any desirability or necessity of firing from within one's pocket I assume it's not a procedure one could practice routinely without major adjustments to one's clothing budget and if you can't practice it...

    But I'm having good fun with my new-found hobby. I would offer the observation that threads such as these will suffer from confirmation bias unless posted in "general handguns". This is the choir, for the most part.
     
  22. zinj

    zinj Member

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    I think this should be changed to "It is much easier for the average shooter to swap parts on an automatic versus a revolver." If a replacement cannot be obtained for a broken or damaged part you are SOL with either form of pistol.

    It is true that revolvers are not the tanks that some people try to portray them as. Many revolver malfunctions will also tie the gun up. However, malfunctions are much more uncommon overall in revolvers than autos.

    I question the value of this tactic. First of all, the gun cannot be aimed with the sights, and pointing would be hindered by the garment constricting movement. The attacker would have to be at point blank range, and by that point you are probably already engaged in a physical confrontation (making trying to reach for the gun a dicey proposition). Lastly by shooting out of the pocket the deterant aspect of a firearm is removed (and would look horrible presented to a jury).
     
  23. obxned

    obxned Member

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    You list a bunch of 'advantages' for the rovolver, but I can think of only two:

    1. It is bonehead simple to train a non-gun-person to use a revolver.

    2. The rovolver can be bought for cartridges that a pistol can not.
     
  24. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Shooting inside youer pocket is a questionable tactic to me, and the assumption that somehow a hammerless revolver can be shot repeatedly ignores the fact that the cylinder may not rotate if wrapped in cloth.
     
  25. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I'm not sure where you're getting this. You don't have to display the firearm to the bad guy if he's trying to kill you. Indeed you don't have to tell him you're armed or give him a chance to put his arms up.

    Either revolvers or semis can jam, of course. But semis tend to have more little problems, and tend to be more variable if not held properly. They're also far more sensitive to ammo choices.
     
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