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Ideas On a S&W "Do It All" Gun

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Mr. Mosin, Jun 2, 2020.

  1. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Can't.

    There is no S&W .357 that I would find comfortable to carry all day, that would meet my needs RE: capacity and shootability.
     
  2. Mr. Mosin

    Mr. Mosin Member

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    I would have to ask that... if S&W doesn't make a .357 Magnum to meet your needs of capacity and shoot-ability..... why are you on the revolver forum ?
     
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  3. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    You misquote me.
     
  4. Rodfac

    Rodfac Member

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    A "Do all handgun"...covers a hellofa lot of territory....and not all shooter's needs are the same, heck not many are even similar...that notwithstanding, I'll give it a try: here's my bono fide's...74 yrs old and live on a small KY farm, handgun shooter/competitor since 1964, two-tour combat vet with 5th Special Forces during the Vietnam years. Think of myself as a revolver guy but do own a bunch of bottom feeders.

    My picks would be a mid-vintage S&W model 19 or 66. The latter making more sense for true outdoor work due to its relative rust-free construction. Either will do nicely though and I'd go with the 4" bbl. length as well. In that size, they're fairly easily concealed under a long loose t-shirt in the summer and most any fall, winter or spring attire. Four inch bbl's give you 33% more inter-sight distance over a 3" piece and offer greater accuracy and another 50-75 fps muzzle velocity too.

    Weight: At ~38 oz., unloaded, a K-Frame Smith, so described, is a sag on the belt, but not excessively so. I've carried one for years that way, sometimes for 15-16 hours when necessary, and suffered no back pain, attributable. Too, that 38 oz's. is about as light as I want when faced with the considerable recoil generated by stout, full house 158 gr SWC loads. The weight, beyond the comfort factor, is a big part of the shooter's ability to get back on the sights for an accurate 2nd or 3rd shot when necessary. The heavier the gun the more pleasant it is to shoot, but the trade off is the shear weight of it for all-day carry. The weight factor is why I don't want a 586 or 686 Smith...they shoot heavy loads more comfortably but the belt sag is just too much for me.

    Concealment: I've found that it's the grip length that's most difficult to hide/obscure for CC use. The bbl. length, within reason, is much easier....you just get used to dressing around the gun. In that regard, I universally carry with an OWB of my own make, which rides high on the waist at the 3:30 o'clock position...the old FBI carry spot. For vehicular carry, I slide the gun a bit farther fwd, allowing access when strapped in. Reasoning, I'm far more likely to face a threat when afoot than mounted. For those that feel a shorter bbl. is necessary, I'd offer this tip, for OWB holsters, try carrying at the 4 o'clock position, as you can hide the lower part of the holster/bbl. in your hip pocket!

    Sights: Nothing but adj. will do as I shoot a variety of different loads, both here on the farm and when carrying in town. Heavy LSWC's for farm duty and lighter JHP's for defensive use if travelling. In 56 years of handgun carry, I've yet to wack adj. sights of Smith or Ruger out of alignment, and I've been thrown from horse back more times than I care to admit, been in two auto wrecks, launched myself over the handle bars on one noteworthy bike excursion...you get the idea. Adj. sights just make perfect sense for zeroing a variety of loads and allow a precise POI/POA at extended handgun ranges. YMMv but they work for me. My only wish is that they were available in tritium but also in the Baughman ramp style for night use.

    Grips: The current Smith factory rubber ones (though supremely fugly), will do nicely. They allow a good secure combat grip yet do not catch on clothing when the piece is carried for CC use. Too, I've found they soak up heavy recoil better than any wood I've ever tried, (the old S&W 'coke bottle' variety a possible exception). While I've carried wood grips under a t-shirt and next to my skin, any checkering rubs be raw after a brief interval...the rubber ones do not.

    Lastly, as the 19 and 66 are only available in .357, a pretty good all-around caliber for close in hunting or defensive use...and I'll point out that it's available in most any back country gen'l store, gas station or gun shop, where you can find a variety of loads to suit your purpose....from deer loads at 1400 fps to squirrel powder puffs down near 700...there's a load that will suit all....and I'd opine that it'll be available when most of the 9mm has been bought up when the manure is in the fan.

    Here's a pair of mine, albeit without the rubber Smith stocks, and with my usual carry leather. The stocks on the M-66 are from Jerry Miculek...while great for DA quick work, they're a mite thin up near the top where the recoil is felt after a cpl of cylinder's full. The ones on the M-19 suffer from the same recoil issues but are so darned pretty that I often leave them on. But with target to medium velocity loads, either is comfortable for an afternoon of casual shooting.

    HTH's & it's only one shooter's opinion...YMMv, Rod

    IMG-E7436.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
  5. Pudge

    Pudge Member

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    Fortunately there's Kimber for when your semi's not a functional option.
     
  6. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

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    Exactly--and Colt.
     
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  7. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    No where in the OP was there any mention of a rifle, nor was there any talk about the revolver being a secondary firearm. The title is "Ideas on a S&W "do it all" gun." My idea is that there is no such thing, at least not available at this time.

    I owned a 530EXC-R. Don't try to kid a kidder. Great bike, and I would ride it the 30 miles one way to the ATV trails, and to the store for whatever would fit in a small backpack, but cross country? c'mon bro. Wasn't the best dirt bike I ever owned and was far from being a comfortable street ride. The issue, was the compromises. Tires for one. Good dirt/sand tires make for lousy road tires and enduro type tires ain't for crap in mud and sand. The headlight and tail-light are barely legal and make the bike actually dangerous at night, on the road with traffic. Like most off road bikes, the seat is not really meant to be sat on. Off road you spend most of the time on the pegs. The seat is there for when you are stopped. Maybe having a chase vehicle traveling with you you could go from Cali to Colorado, but with it's 2 gallon gas tank and no way to take anything else but what's on your back with you? You're vainly grasping at straws.

    I have nuttin' wrong with any thing S&W or their revolvers. But, I have a 4" 686 along with a 5" and a 6". Would not even want to think about the 4" being my EDC. Nor is it the one I pick when I want to hunt with a .357. We are all entitled to our opinions. Some here think a 3" this or a 4" that is all they would ever want or need for a revolver, and that is fine. That's their honest opinion. Me, I don't like to compromise and I don't have to. That's why there is a Harley and a Honda in the garage right now. One for road and one for dirt. The best of both worlds without having to sacrifice or compromise what's important.
     
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  8. Pudge

    Pudge Member

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    Yeah man. I love my 3" M65, but if it didn't serve me well, that's what I'd be trading it on!
     
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  9. Pudge

    Pudge Member

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    You're right, and in the same line of thinking, my .357's all make poor pheasant/grouse/turkey/duck guns. My bad.
     
  10. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    Since you don’t know me, nor I you, I’ll let the “grasping at straws” comment pass.

    We have club members that are 50, 60 even 70 years old who do it. All the time. Some with their wives, who ride their own bikes.

    Santa Barbara to Utah, a quick run from Victorville to Primm (all on dirt) to stay the night and play some cards, then ride home the next day, LA to Grand Junction on a three-day each-way enduro jaunt. Where you live you may not have equipped your bike with a 4+ gallon desert tank that gives you well over 200 miles to E, carry a gallon of extra gas in a can and make long rides, and that’s fine. But down here we do.

    As for the sprit of this thread, nothing is taken literally nor is there a right answer. It’s merely a hypothetical “what do you think” gun-opinion thread.
    Stay safe.
     
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  11. .38 Special

    .38 Special Member

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    Hard to find a more attractive gun than that Model 19. My 19-4 is my EDC and essentially my "do-it-all" gun. I sure hope I never have to point it at an angry bear, though!
     
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  12. labnoti

    labnoti Member

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    No joke, that is my idea of a "do-it-all" gun for me personally. My interests in firearms and reloading is wide-ranging, but I keep coming back to that revolver or one really close to it. I carry one for personal protection all day, everyday. I started with airweight jframes because it seemed more rational, but I came to realize that the little additional comfort was a poor tradeoff for the decrease in my performance with it. I found a way to carry the bigger revolver comfortably and concealed and I would never look back.

    I train in classes with good instructors. Some of the good schools offer a very tempting array of different classes for all kinds of weapons. There are long-range rifle, carbine, combat shotgun, and myriad handgun classes for fundamentals and all kinds of special tactics. The huge advantages of other weapons in various roles is not lost on me, but if I honestly assess myself personally, the handgun's relevance to me totally overwhelms everything else. Because I have limited time and resources to hone my competency, I came to the conclusion that investing more in handgun skills just made more sense than countersniper rifle, CQB shotgun, or carbine home defense skills. Whether I'm defending myself at home or away, the handgun is on me and will work without compromise with one-hand. It will also stay with me even when I need it to be in neither hand. There really aren't many conceivable situations where it won't work. The handgun's overall value is just so far greater than those niche weapons, I questioned whether spending my time and money on those other weapons, ammo, and training was even worth it or if I would be better off putting that into the handgun.

    I hunt game. I have a rifle for deer, antelope, bear, sheep, elk, but tags aren't abundant in my state. There are years when I won't have one. I have a preference to hunt with a rifle, but I got to thinking that I might well give the revolver a try. I have a 1X red dot sight on it and I can shoot a tight-enough group double-action at 50 yards off-hand, and I can hit a small-enough target (5" vital area) at 100 yards rested. Note that this isn't with a dedicated hunting revolver, but with my EDC handgun. 357 might not be the best handgun cartridge for big game, but it will do. A revolver itself isn't the best for big game either, but it will do. As a former bow-hunter, I'm willing to work to get close enough to make it happen. I think I could learn a lot from using my revolver on live game. I don't have a tag this year, so I'm going to be helping my sons fill theirs (they will use a rifle).

    There may be better hunting revolvers, in bigger bores with longer barrels, but a full-size frame ~6" 357 isn't awful. In a personal protection deadly force incident that we can't know anything else about in advance, a revolver like that doesn't really leave a lot to be desired compared to smaller guns. Some people are determined to have more cartridges in the gun at the start, but I focus on everything that makes the first 6, 7, or 8 hit their target. I favor the big revolver for that job. The most competent handguns can't match a rifle or shotgun where they're really called for, but we're not likely to have the rifle or shotgun with us when the unpredictable happens, and that's what lends the handgun so much value. So the only real drawback of the big revolver happens if a person can't find a way to keep it with them. If they can't, it's not better than a carbine that's left at home or in the truck.
     
  13. Sneakshot92

    Sneakshot92 Member

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    So true. My factory bear load for 357 is the Federal loading with the 180gr Swift A Frame. NOT something I would want to shoot in a K frame Smith or old model 66 Taurus (basically a copy of a model 19). I recently got a Blackhawk for that.
     
  14. SteadyD

    SteadyD Member

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    The 327 PC fits for me. 8 rounds, ~23 oz, short enough to carry OWB under a button up shirt, and a pretty nice trigger.
     
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  15. DR505

    DR505 Member

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    I won’t over-analyze this. I choose a .45 Colt 625 Mountain Gun. Easy!

    46614829204_6afd1fc9d9_b.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
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  16. Ed Ames

    Ed Ames Member

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    Indeed? I used to ride a Suzuki SV650, which is far more street oriented, but I took several 1500+ mile round trips that involved hundreds of miles of dirt roads and trails. Fire roads through the Rockies, OHV trails in the Mojave. I would load all my camping gear on the bike and would ride into the National forests of New Mexico, Colorado, California, etc....and I was a piker compared to the guys who took bikes like mine, or Kawasaki KTM650s, up to the Arctic Circle or down to South America doing 1000s of miles of dirt, river crossings, etc.. I went on a ride with a group across a mountain plateau in Colorado where there was a 65+ year old guys who had ridden 2000+ miles to be there, on knobby tires, and he proceeded to to ride around on little trails like he was on 250cc dirt bike.

    If this guy is from somewhere like some of the towns around Victorville where riding on dirt is a way of life, everything he said is entirely believable.

    None of which gets around the fact that the closest you get to a “do it all” revolver is a big bore with handloads to let you approximate smaller guns. Wax bullets for a pseudo-rimfire, up to a magnum load for hunting. If this thread wasn’t S&W specific I’d say a Ruger Alaskan in .454 casull. There are states where it’s not legal for hunting, but even as a snub it can compete with longer barreled .44 magnums and it conceals about as well as a 1911.
     
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  17. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

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    I am, we have put on 100 mile hare and hound races on in Johnson Valley, Red Mountain, Hodge Rd South towards Slash X and Barstow. (Ricky Brabec, the 2020 Dakar Rally Motorcycling winner, and AMA hall of famer Kurt Caselli (RIP) are alumni of our H&H events.) We also run two-day Dual Euro Scrambles, Single-day Desert Scrambles and we’re the presenting club for the NGPS series December race in Lake Havasu City, Az. Our local AMA District 37 guys race it all, you name it.

    But, the only legal rifle/handgun shooting out that way is North of I/15 at Hodge and at Calico. The rest of the BLM land is shotgun only :(.

    Stay safe.
     
  18. Ed Ames

    Ed Ames Member

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    Yeah, Hodge Rd used to be a weekly stop for me when I lived in California. I’d take my dad out there first thing in the morning with some black powder guns, an assortment of modern stuff, and we’d shoot until we were hungry, then head back towards Victorville and stop at a little burger/breakfast place that used to be along the way. One of the few things I miss about living in California.
     
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  19. Fiv3r

    Fiv3r Member

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    I think we put too much weight to the term "do it all". No one is claiming a 4" .357 Smith will be a good hunting gun for white tail at 200 yards.

    For me, do it all is a gun that will excel at what I need done in a situation I wasnt hoping not to be in. Find yourself in a dark alley downtown on accident one night? .357 686 feels pretty good to have. Loud bang on the cabin back door in the middle of the boonies? Id be glad to have that 686. Lost in the woods for a couple days? Couple of rounds of .38 wc or snake shot may land you some protein. Hard cast 158 gn .357 will be enough for most critters i would run into.

    Its not perfect but it would do the job in those cases.
     
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  20. PapaG

    PapaG Member

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    Do what all? Hunting. Match? Bullseye? Ccw? Come on, specify.
     
  21. styles

    styles Member

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    First it needs to be a do anything cartridge that can be loaded for plinking, defense, or hunting. I like 45 colt. In a smith look for a 625 in 45 colt. It will come closest to doing anything.
     
  22. OrangePwrx9

    OrangePwrx9 Member

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    The 2.75" S&W M69 Combat Magnum. 44 Mag. If you want it. 44 Spcl if you don't. Enough smack even in bear country.

    Get the 4" version if required.
     
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  23. Dibbs

    Dibbs Member

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    S&W Governor, Larger Bore, shoots 45 Colt, very large, very light, also shoots shotgun shells;
    that's as close to "doing it all", as I can get. Good for snakes, SD, all around shooter, which will also
    fit in a large front pocket.
     
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  24. Ed Ames

    Ed Ames Member

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    Illegal in California. ☹️
     
  25. JFrame

    JFrame Member

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    :eek::eek::eek::(:(:(:mad::mad::mad:

    .
     
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