Quantcast

Input Requested: The Old Man Gun

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by stanley_white, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. stanley_white

    stanley_white Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    Washington DC
    I have recently been pontificating about a project I am calling The Old Man Gun.

    In short, what handgun requires the least amount of hand strength and dexterity to operate and is something I could literally grow old with?

    As I have witnessed friends and relatives aging, the natural debilitation of the human body does indeed become an issue.

    As such, I would welcome any thoughts you would be interested in providing.

    Thus far my thoughts revolve around a single action revolver chambered in .357 Magnum so I can run the gamut of light .38 Special to 180 Grain Buffalo Bore loads. I think single action due to lighter trigger pull, being able to cock the hammer with the heel of the hand if necessary (a gross motor movement etc) and the loading possibly requiring less dexterity / thumb strength than a cylinder latch on a double action revolver.

    Of course all of the above could be me overthinking things, as I am prone to do, but would still welcome your input.

    Thank you in advance.

    -Stan
     
    horsey300, magyars4 and scaatylobo like this.
  2. Pat Riot
    • Contributing Member

    Pat Riot Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2015
    Messages:
    2,192
    I would think single action could be just as challenging as double action.
    They both require two hands to load when standing.
    At a table both could be loaded one handed but the DA would require more dexterity to open.
    Unloading a DA would be easier than a SA or at least quicker.
    A DA could be loaded with a spring actuated speedloader, like a Speed Beez speedloader.
    Speed Beez loader video:


    I guess it would depend on the type of issue one might have and their dexterity.
    I could see work-arounds a for each type of revolver.
     
  3. Reinz

    Reinz Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2008
    Messages:
    581
    Location:
    Texas
    As far as revolvers go I think that trigger time experience is half of the battle.

    As I read the OP the single action revolver was the first thing that came to mind. Probably because that is what would work best for ME because I have spent much more time with it than a DA revolver. Whereas I can see the reverse being true for one with more DA experience.
     
    magyars4, Dave T, .308 Norma and 2 others like this.
  4. edwardware

    edwardware Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2010
    Messages:
    2,443
    This is THE mission that the M&P EZ models were developed for.

    Last year's student was an older (~70) lady with arthritic hands. The M&P 380 EZ is where we settled for ease of use; it's wonderful for low hand strength shooters. She was shooting weekly on her own until the Commie Flu shut things down.

    I've since handled the M&P 9 EZ. It's almost as easy to rack, and will fit larger hands more easily.
     
    Gordon, huntsman, Boarhunter and 7 others like this.
  5. Pudge

    Pudge Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2012
    Messages:
    423
    Location:
    Tioga County, PA
    Maybe a Single Seven in .327?
     
    horsey300, Ohen Cepel, Olon and 5 others like this.
  6. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2010
    Messages:
    6,964
    Location:
    Galveston Bay is an Hour Away ©
    I've been thinking of it myself as my shooting hand is developing painful arthritis or carpal tunnel or something. I'm only 55, but I am thinking of the future.

    What I know is, the double action revolver seems great except for its long heavy DA trigger pull. That leads one to a single action revolver that has to be cocked for each shot, but one can do that with a DA revolver as well.

    Half a year ago, I bought a used Beretta 81BB in .32 ACP thinking that could be my "old man" house gun. The idea of a low recoiling DA/SA left in "cocked and locked" condition is good, but the slide has very small gripping surfaces and the recoil spring is surprisingly stiff.

    From my experience with autoloaders with heavier slides (which seem to use lighter recoil springs) and lots of grip area on that slide, I'm leaning towards a 1911 in 9mm in the future. Maybe even that downscaled Browning 1911 in .380 ACP.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2020
    Gordon, bannockburn, Pat Riot and 3 others like this.
  7. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2010
    Messages:
    7,809
    Location:
    South Eastern Illinois
    I'm going with s ruger 50/50.
    A heavy , big gun loaded with .45acp moon clips.
    Or mild shooting. 45colt cowboy loads.
     
    Pat Riot, horsey300 and stanley_white like this.
  8. danez71

    danez71 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Messages:
    4,758
    Location:
    CAAZ;TX?
    For revolvers, I feel...
    LCRx in 327. Can be shot SA/DA which ever is easier for the user. This is what my mid 70s little mom uses. She doesn't like semi autos for no particular tangible reason. She shoots the 32 HR mag or 32 longs... I'm pretty sure it's the 32HR mags.


    However... I think edwardwares post is valid and worth considering.



    A G19 or the EZ with 12-15 rounds and a 5.5lb trigger seems like it could be a better choice than 5-6 rounds with an 11lb+ DA trigger.

    I don't own either but may someday.



    If the user has hand strength or dexterity issues, why does everyone jump to recommending guns needing the most hand strength and dexterity?


    .
     
    stanley_white likes this.
  9. LUCKYDAWG13

    LUCKYDAWG13 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    Messages:
    1,656
    Location:
    Illinois
    I bought my old man guns years ago and I was thinking about it when I did both in 357 I reload so I'm just running 38 loads in 357 brass
    first up is my S&W 686-3 2nd is my 3" Ruger sp101 I feel that I will be able to shoot both of them well into my ginger years
     
  10. scaatylobo

    scaatylobo Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,381
    Location:
    Western NYS
    I think I am qualified to address your question as I am a fairly 'young' 73 [ in Sept ].

    I too have pondered this question.

    At present I am still toting a Glock 19 with spare magazine.

    But there might [ will ? ] come a day when that is too heavy or large or whatever ,to hump & shoot.

    At present my preference is going to be a S&W 'J' frame in .357/.38 special.

    I own a few and with the lighter loads,they are very nice to shoot and practice with.

    I do often wear a glove if I am going to shoot till my hand might get sore,But I check to be sure that the loads are not unbearable for at least 18 rounds.

    Love to hear what you finally decide on,good luck.
     
    Pat Riot and stanley_white like this.
  11. Blkhrt13

    Blkhrt13 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2017
    Messages:
    1,516
    Location:
    The armpit of Satan (south Louisiana)
    I’m thing a 3” bird head Ruger 357/38 with a 9mm cyl also. I want one anyway and a 380ez as well. I’m only 40 and am blessed with being healthy and whole. But I will buy the vaquero described and a good holster and train and carry it along with auto loaders. If it gets down to my final form then I will have time in the saddle.
     
    horsey300 and stanley_white like this.
  12. stanley_white

    stanley_white Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    Washington DC
    I have thought often about this exact firearm.

    However, I would worry about loading the moon clips based upon loss of dexterity and I would not want to have to rely on a second thing like a moon clip loader as a go / no-go criteria for firearms usage.

    I do think there is a lot of goodness in .45 and .44 (.429 etc) caliber bullets as they are big and easier to grab. I suspect a .44 Magnum could be loaded with .44 Special rounds and still be enjoyable.

    For Ruger specifically, I think the push-button cylinder release will be superior to aging hands than the Smith and Wesson. I also think the Colt cylinder release will be superior to the Smith and Wesson as one can apply some leverage when operating it.

    -Stan
     
  13. WheelGunMan

    WheelGunMan Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2016
    Messages:
    757
    Location:
    U S A
    Interesting take. I just put a 70 year old female with limited upper body strength thru a cursory firearm instruction to determine what would be the ideal weapon for her to conceal carry. She indicated that she would probably IWB carry on her waist. She tried a Kimber Micro 380, a M&P Bodyguard 380, a Sig P365XL, a Ruger LCR357 (shooting .38 Spcl), a Ruger LCR22WMR and a Ruger 2-1/4" SP101 DAO.

    She could not rack the slide of the M&P Bodyguard no matter how many different techniques we tried. She had similar difficulty with the Kimber. She was able to work the slide on the P365 because of its larger girth but still had difficulty. She felt that the Sig in 9mm had less recoil than either .380. She didn't care for the snap of the LCR357 while shooting Winchester 130 grain FMJ's. She shot the LCR22WMR surprisingly well and really enjoyed the fit and feel of it in her hand. The heavy trigger didn't affect her and she was surprisingly accurate with it compared to the the semi-autos she tried. She really liked the SP101 but felt it was a little to heavy to suit her.

    Her final decision was to procure a LCR22WMR for her conceal carry needs. My wife shoots that same gun extremely well but chose the Kimber Micro for her carry gun because it fits her purse better. She shoots the .380 pretty well and is committed to improving her skill with it. I think half the battle is helping someone find a firearm that fills their specific needs and comfort, because then they'll shoot it more because it's tailored to them.
     
  14. chicharrones

    chicharrones needs more ammo

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2010
    Messages:
    6,964
    Location:
    Galveston Bay is an Hour Away ©
    Armybrat and Armored farmer like this.
  15. WestKentucky

    WestKentucky Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2014
    Messages:
    9,333
    Location:
    Middle Tn
    Seems fine motor control would be an issue for many older folks. That makes me wonder if something like a Bond Arms roughneck would be worthy of consideration. That’s a simple motion to open it, similar cocking and firing considerations as the single action revolver mentioned above, and available in calibers from bear-stomp to mousefart
     
    Armored farmer likes this.
  16. nofendertom

    nofendertom Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2019
    Messages:
    183
    1--- .357 revolver makes sense---a variety of loads and no magazine to load.
    2--- Double action revolver can be cocked the same as a single action when you couldn't just squeeze the trigger.
    3--- Double action easier and faster to reload than single action with the use of speed loaders.
    4--- Cylinder latch can be replaced (on S&W -maybe others) with a competition latch which gives you more leverage and is easier to use.
    5---Grips on DA revolver can be fit to your hand for most comfort.

    After 35 years of .44Mag abuse and nerve and tendon damage my choice for MY old man gun is a S&W Model 28- 4in .357 Mag.
     
    DaStray, Beach Bum, Pat Riot and 3 others like this.
  17. stanley_white

    stanley_white Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2008
    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Thank you nofendertom!

    As I not only value experience, but also brevity, your post is excellent.

    -Stan
     
    Beach Bum, shoebox1.1 and magyars4 like this.
  18. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    27,254
    Agree, whichever DA revolver you like best. A S&W with target hammer so you could resort to single action shooting if necessary would be good. I might just pick up my Python.
    There is little point to the SAA as a general purpose handgun unless you have a lot of experience with one.

    I am only 75 but have resorted to the push-push slide rack of an automatic as commonly recommended to Ladies.
     
    magyars4 and stanley_white like this.
  19. WheelGunMan

    WheelGunMan Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2016
    Messages:
    757
    Location:
    U S A
    My favorite DA/SA revolver would be my 3" LCRx357. I like the heft, the balance and the adjustable rear sight that allows me to dial it in for whatever ammo I'm shooting out of it.
     
    stanley_white likes this.
  20. .38 Special

    .38 Special Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Messages:
    3,134
    I recently had exactly this discussion with an older gentleman at the range. I commented on his gorgeous SAA and it came out that it was one of a matched pair, as well as just about the only handgun he could handle any more. His arthritis had gotten to the point that he no longer could comfortably operate his beloved 1911s, so had stopped carrying them. He also could not manage a double action revolver trigger. His slicked-up single actions from his Cowboy Action days were still perfect for him, though, so that his what he depended on. He let me try one and I was astonished at how light the hammer was. He assured me they still were completely reliable with any primer.

    He admitted, though, that reloading in a hurry was completely out of the question, and showed me the rubber-tipped wooden dowel he used to open the loading gates...
     
    danez71 and stanley_white like this.
  21. NIGHTLORD40K

    NIGHTLORD40K Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2015
    Messages:
    5,425
    Location:
    Nostramo (in absentia), Segmentum Ultima
    They are a little scarce these days, but a SIG P250 .380 might be what your looking for. They were were offered in a full-size, 15+1, DAO, locked breech configuration- with an actual hammer!

    Wide gripframe to spread the shock, lots of gripping surface, modest return spring, and a long but light trigger pull.

    I hate plastic pistols, but I gotta say I was impressed with that package. Too bad SIG killed them off so quickly.
     
    chicharrones and stanley_white like this.
  22. NIGHTLORD40K

    NIGHTLORD40K Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2015
    Messages:
    5,425
    Location:
    Nostramo (in absentia), Segmentum Ultima
    Ginger years? Is your hair slowly turning........red?:D

    They will have to pry my 686 from my cold, dead, gnarled, arthritic hands someday!
     
  23. Dudemeister

    Dudemeister Member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    593
    Location:
    San Francisco
    I personally think that, for older people, a single action revolver would be desirable, over a DA, for one simple reason: The plow handle grip shape. The fact that it rolls in your hand under recoil, and it doesn't batter your joints. I don't know of any DA revolvers with an SAA grip.

    So if it was me, all other issues aside, I would start there, but that would eliminate nearly all firearms discussed after the first 3 or 4 posts :(

    For ease of unloading and reloading a top break??
     
    Iggy and stanley_white like this.
  24. Dudemeister

    Dudemeister Member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2010
    Messages:
    593
    Location:
    San Francisco
    I think that's what they did to Chuck Heston. ;)
     
    stanley_white and NIGHTLORD40K like this.
  25. labnoti

    labnoti Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2018
    Messages:
    1,741
    What is the purpose the old man has for his gun?

    Some people answerered assuming the old man will carry the gun for personal protection, while others appear to have gathered that he wants to shoot it at the range recreationally.

    I agree that the S&W EZ is a notable consideration for carry, it would be about as fun at the range as racing my mobility scooter. I would greatly prefer the single action revolver. The New Vaquero might get too heavy at some point, but Uberti or Standard Mfg. in 45 Colt are better. I would also consider the Single Seven, especially with the numerous compatible loads at a lower pressure than 327 Mag. I'm not a rimfire fan, but the Single Six and even the Bearcat could be the ticket for my very feeblest days, if I can see anything at that point.
     
    Armored farmer and Dudemeister like this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice