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Current Charter Arms compared to S&W and Ruger

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by peacebutready, Nov 26, 2018.

  1. peacebutready

    peacebutready Member

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    On another thread a poster wrote "Charter is currently producing the best guns ever to wear that name" Where do current Charter Arms revolvers stand in terms of quality compared to S&W and Ruger?
     
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  2. jar

    jar Member

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    My modern Charter Arms Undercover feels very similar to my modern Smith 642 Airweight except the cylinder turns Coltwise not Smithwise. Accuracy is about the same, trigger feel is about the same but finish is not quite as high as modern Smith.
     
  3. CajunBass

    CajunBass Member

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    jar hit it pretty much on the head.
     
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  4. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    You sir, are about to be plagiarized. I'm stealing that line!
     
  5. robhof

    robhof Member

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    I have friends with Charter revolvers and are pleased with their shooting, but they all complain about fit and finish, I guess you get what you pay for, but they seem to shoot well. I love my Rugers, but I've done some polishing and spring changes to get the guns I want to depend on. DSCN0452.JPG
     
  6. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    Some years back I was looking for a .38 Special revolver for the wife of a friend of mine. She wanted to get her concealed carry license and didn't like what he had for her to choose from. So I went to the local gun shows and found that S&W still made some of the best small frame revolvers in terms of overall fit and finish, no cylinder play, and a decent trigger. The Ruger offerings were both well made but the LCR was too light and the SP101 was too heavy. At the time I rated Charter Arms just a bit below S&W in overall quality but certainly worth the asking price. Taurus was not in the running being two (or maybe three), notches below Charter Arms; most had considerable cylinder play and heavy, unrefined triggers.
     
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  7. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    I like my Charter Arms Bulldog but is not the same quality as Smith or Ruger.
     
  8. mcb

    mcb Member

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    My problem is Charter Arms is they only make snubbies. I have and carry a snub nose revolver but they are not something I really desire. I would get far more use out of a full size revolver. I would love to have a Pit-Bull in 40S&W with a 3 to 4 inch barrel. Most of their stuff is 2.5 inches or shorter. They only offer two or three models with a longer that 2.5-inch barrels but not in cartridges that interest me.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2018
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  9. Buckeye63

    Buckeye63 Member

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    I own three Charters .. They are functional... Strong for there weight and size ... They are light .. They go bang ... and Charter offers great customer service...
    My two Charter 38spl are both Alumium framed and weigh a scant 13oz ... Both utterly realiable... good triggers ( not great) but consistent ...

    image.jpeg image.jpeg
    My Charter Bulldog and SP101 357 are very similar in size .. Cept the cylinder of Bulldog is bigger...
    Weight of the Bulldog 22oz
    the SP101 weighs in at 25oz
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2018
  10. rpenmanparker

    rpenmanparker Member

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    They have the factory and the know how and are supporting their investment profitably with a line of inexpensive guns made to a slightly lower standard than Colt, Ruger and S&W. So why not clean up the product some and put it on the market to compete head on with the big boys? Not instead of their current business model but in addition to it. IOW a higher end line under a different name based on the same competent models they already make. I would think that the improvement in fit and finish would be cheap to do compared to the higher value the guns would show in the marketplace. Supposing you could “clean up” a Bulldog for $50 or less of hand labor and quality control expense. Wouldn’t that net $200 more in the market? Seems to me they are letting their manufacturing expertise go to waste.
     
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  11. Buckeye63

    Buckeye63 Member

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    I'd really like to have a Bulldog Police 6 shot 38spl with a 3 inch barrel
     
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  12. farm23

    farm23 Member

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    I have a Bulldog Classic and it has over 500 rounds without a hitch. It cost less than any of my Rugers or S&W and is a good value. The customer service is good so it fills a needed niche. Also it is made here in the USA.
     
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  13. Ohen Cepel

    Ohen Cepel Member

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    Great thread; Smithwise vs Coltwise, a red dot on a Ruger Old Army, and great honest input!

    I have also been thinking about a Charter Arms. Wanted one in .327 but they stopped making those so was looking at a .32 mag Undercoverette (not a great name). However, I'm with mcb in wanting something with a longer barrel as those only come in 2in.

    I do appreciate them making some rather unique items. I think it was their Boomer that was in .44 mag with no front sight, DAO, and ported. Not a common design but I appreciate them doing it!

    Need to find some in my area to check out soon. Thanks again to the OP for starting this thread and everyone's input as they have been on my mind.
     
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  14. Fiv3r

    Fiv3r Member

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    A bulldog is on my short list. I want overly impressed with my 642 compared to other revolvers. The Rugers are tanks, but heavy. I'm thinking a CA is in my future.
     
  15. Tilos

    Tilos Member

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    OK, saw this gun but regretfully didn't handle it, and saw it at a shop 1000 miles from home :(.
    9mmChartArms.jpg
    It's 9mm!, something that would be cheap to shoot as 9mm is the cheapest centerfire ammo going, and no moon clips :what:.
    A perfect range gun for me...
    I emailed Charter Arms because it doesn't show on their site, they stock and sell them.
    I want one but want to handle one before I order/buy it :thumbup:
    Anyone else seen/handled this gun?
    :D
    It's listed on Buds and Guns America
    Edit: Link: https://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/product_info.php/products_id/415003672
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2018
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  16. Buckeye63

    Buckeye63 Member

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    image.jpeg I have had this Charter 44spl for several years ... Great revolver...
    Charter have alot of offerings
    22LR ,22mag ,32 H&R ,38spl,357mag,44spl,45 colt , 41 mag
    9mm,40 S&W & 45acp
    You just don't see that ... Charter uses 3 frame sizes ..small (j frame-ish) ,Bulldog (Colt D-ish) and XL (K frame-ish )
     
  17. farm23

    farm23 Member

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    The Boomer is a 44 spl and for up close and personal. With a Crimson laser it can reach out more.
     
  18. Tallball

    Tallball Member

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    Charter does offer revolvers with 3", 4.2", and 6" barrels. I am looking at the catalog as I type. That doesn't mean that they are easy to find, but they are listed in the catalog.
     
  19. mcb

    mcb Member

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    Do they do any if their rimless revolvers in 3, 4.2 or 6? Specifically the 40S&W?
     
  20. H3NT3

    H3NT3 Member

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    Stand as a good value while still being USA made.

    Weight matters for carry.

    Charter does with a stainless steel frame what takes S&W to do with an aluminum frame. Full SS doesn’t have a finish to flake off.

    Charter does with aluminum what it takes S&W to do with a scandium alloy... Plus you can have a color option. But no .357 in that weight with CA so a good part of the price difference is the .357 Mag ability there I suppose.

    Charter does with a 4.2” barrel what a full steel .38 snubby would be from others.

    My CA UC is my favorite carry. It has become my only carry. Lol. I have already traded some previous carry’s in.

    The money you don’t spend for a higher priced gun you can direct toward a nice holster or two and try a different grip.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2018
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  21. cheygriz

    cheygriz Member

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    I had one several years ago. I'll never have another one.
     
  22. peacebutready

    peacebutready Member

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    I know they make a .44 special with a 4" barrel.


    This is interesting and good to know. Thanks.
     
  23. jar

    jar Member

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    Actually I had asked Charter about 3" and 4" barrel revolvers just recently. They responded "We only carry one 3 inch barrel, its a 44 Bull Dog model number 34431. Now the 4.2 inch barrel - .44 Bull Dog model number 74442, .357 Mag Pug 73542, Undercover .38 6-shot model number 73860, Pathfinder .22 mag model number 72342, Pathfinder .22 LR model number 72242, Pit Bull .9mm model number 79942. Hope this helps"
     
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  24. peacebutready

    peacebutready Member

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    Probably has something to do with Canada. There's some rule or law about a barrel needing to be 4.2".
     
  25. JONWILL

    JONWILL Member

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    I have had several. They are ok but nothing special. Resale value is pretty low. The 38 normally sells around $150-200.
     
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