Revolvers, a venerated option

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by PRM, Sep 29, 2020.

  1. PRM

    PRM Member

    Apr 14, 2008
    I've been an avid hand gunner for over 45 years. I started out shooting Second Generation Colt black powder revolvers, and quickly developed a love for both S&W and Colt .38 revolvers. Over time I added some SAA 45s and like most acquired some nice semi-autos.

    For the last couple of years I have almost exclusively carried a Springfield XDs in 45 with the 4 inch slide.

    Enter July 30th, 2020, I was cutting some trees and trimming limbs when one popped back and took the ladder out I was on. After the rodeo, I found myself on the ground with a torn bicep. I immediately knew it was bad. Surgery was two weeks post accident to reattach it (distal bicep repair). Started physical therapy today and things are really looking up.

    I know there are one hand techniques for working the slide. But, for the last 9 weeks I have really gotten reacquainted with my revolvers. Without a doubt, there are times and conditions that make a revolver a practical choice for individuals.
  2. 25-5
    • Contributing Member

    25-5 Contributing Member

    Jul 29, 2015
    A shame you got hurt. Been there. Do your rehab with a vengeance and you'll get well.
    I've been shooting and reloading for as long as you. I carry a Colt Series 70, but just as happy with my Baby Chief.
    I have mostly revolvers and love them. A lot less brass chasing too!
    Best of luck.
    Armored farmer and Pat Riot like this.
  3. ontarget

    ontarget Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    Michigan (Gods country)
    I can't remember the last time a Semi auto came out of my safe. Well except for the 1911. I don't even enjoy shooting bottom feeders anymore.
  4. Pat Riot
    • Contributing Member

    Pat Riot Contributing Member

    May 21, 2015
    Southern California
    Sorry to hear about your demise. I do understand. Past motorcycle accidents have limited my shooting capabilities until I was healed up a couple of times.
    Currently my right hand is in a cast type brace from having carpal tunnel surgery.
    Shooting left handed is humbling when I look at my targets but at least I can hit the target. ;) I have practiced left or weak handed shooting for some time now. Loading the revolvers is difficult without the use of my right hand so I have opted not to shoot at all until I get this brace off in a couple of weeks. I do not want to fumble at the Range with a loaded gun. And I don’t wish to drop a gun either.
    Once I get the brace off I won’t be able to shoot right handed for another 3 weeks but I will at least be able to load my guns safely.

    Good luck with your healing and shooting. :)
    ArkieVol and Riomouse911 like this.
  5. StrawHat

    StrawHat Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    NE Ohio
    Here is one way to wok the slide with only one hand.

  6. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

    Dec 5, 2018
    The Great American Prairie
    Ladders suck eh?

    Glad you are recovering. And that you rediscovered the wheel.

    I think practice with the off-hand helps for many situations. Obviously, for shooting from an awkward covered position defensively. But also other situations. The second deer I ever shot was left handed with my left eye up to the scope. I was sitting, using a bipod and couldn't get a shot shooting my normal right handed. I slowly swapped arms, and the 75gr 243 dropped him straight in the dirt as the last rays of sunshine were fading away.
  7. stanley_white

    stanley_white Member

    Mar 28, 2008
    Washington DC
    Good vibes sent your way for a speedy recovery.

    And FYI, this Battlehook rear sight is purposely engineered for one hand racking.

    I use it and it is super cool.

    Rexster and NIGHTLORD40K like this.
  8. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

    Apr 24, 2007

    Sorry to hear about your tree trimming mishap. Hope your rehab goes well and that your one-handed shooting technique serves you well til you get your other arm back!
    Alte Schule likes this.
  9. Riomouse911

    Riomouse911 Member

    Jun 5, 2013
    Man, I came close to that scenario about 20 years ago trimming a huge silver maple at my first house. Dang 12" limb kicked back and in an instant smashed my hand between the butt of the branch, the upper chainsaw handle and the scaffolding I was using (Thinking I was safer on it than a ladder :confused:). I came close to some real damage, got lucky that the chainsaw handle broke in half before my hand did. I'm sorry to hear about your fall, torn muscles like yours are miserably painful when they happen.

    I hope you recover quickly and are 100% soon!

    Stay safe.
  10. Mark 40

    Mark 40 Member

    Jun 26, 2016
    Poconos, PA
    Yes, agreed.

    PRM- sorry to hear of your misfortune, and hope your rehab and return to normalcy goes well. In the meantime enjoy your wheel guns.
  11. Dave T

    Dave T Member

    Jan 19, 2003
    Mesa, AZ
    Best of luck in a speedy recovery.

    After carrying various 1911 pattern Colts through my LEO career and for over 10 years after retirement I had to switch to Glock 45s because of arthritis in my hands. As that got worse I started having trouble performing the manual of arms with the Glocks. I can still perform the manual of arms with any double action revolver (not to mention single actions) so that is what I'm carrying now.

    And I'm practicing one hand shooting more and more because of my past experience with three carpal tunnel surgeries. Don't let anyone tell you these are the golden years. It's rust, not gold. (smile)

    Rock185, BigBlue 94 and Boarhunter like this.
  12. GEM

    GEM Moderator Staff Member

    Apr 11, 2004
    Been there - so my sympathies. I have trained in one handed manipulations of semis, so my solution when my dominant hand and arm were casted up from a fall, was a G19 with 15+1 rounds. I shoot decently with my non dominant hand, even one handed - practiced that way with real ammo and dry fire, SIRT.

    I do understand the revolver choice and would have no problem with that, accepting the number of opponents limitation.
  13. BobWright

    BobWright Member

    Feb 11, 2014
    Memphis, Tennessee
    Well, many years ago my handgun choice became the Single Action revolver, thankfully in a less painful way.

    Glad you are healing and continued wishes for your recovery and may God bless you.

    Bob Wright

    P.S. I did learn some years back that you can't jump off a falling ladder.
    PRM and Corpral_Agarn like this.
  14. Ernie Bass

    Ernie Bass member

    Aug 10, 2019
    No Town N.C.
    One thing for sure the Revolver is not going anywhere. And though I own both, I still love the Snubbies, carry then and have no problems with the abilities that these guns offer. And for sure there are many that can work a revolver as good as a Semi. I would go with the flow and just hone my skills even better than present. Trying to rack a slide one handed is something I have trained to do, but for me, just a last ditch effort. Not some thing I want to do on a regular basis. It would get old quick.
    Sorry about your should. That sucks. Glad you still have the skills with the Wheel gun.
    defjon and Boarhunter like this.
  15. defjon

    defjon Member

    Oct 22, 2005
    I went through something similar in 2008 or so, you will heal and get stronger but it will take time and there is no way to rush it, patience is the name of the game.

    PT will suck and hurt like hell, but keep it up, it pays dividends.

    I too went from a double stack 9mm to a revolver during this period. I could do a one handed Rack, even get mags loaded etc.

    However, it was much simpler dropping six rounds into a cylinder and closing it again. I had a lot of fun shooting left handed only for the better part of a year.

    After all the surgeries and the cast finally came off, my right arm/dominant hand came out looking like a tiny emaciated t-rex arm!

    Lots of fun building it back at the gym, still clearly remember the DAY I was able to lift the same size barbell I was slinging prior to being hurt.

    Good to have a revolver around just in case, in my experience.

    My old model 586 no dash and Taurus model 85 saw me through. Foolishly sold both of those at some point. Ah well.
    Mosin Bubba and Ernie Bass like this.
  16. Rexster

    Rexster Member

    Mar 25, 2007
    SE Texas
    Well, first, heal well! I have known several folks who recovered completely after biceps and biceps tendon injuries, so I am optimistic, for you.

    Yes, revolvers can be good one-hand guns, compared to many autoloaders, which seem to be handSguns, rather than handguns. My thumbs are relatively short, compared to the overall length of my hands, which vexed me during a time when I had to use specified double-column-mag, wide-body duty pistols. Gen3 Glocks, and then a SIG P226, were handSguns. Being able to switch to Gen4 Glocks was a relief, as the grip volume was smaller. Being able to resume carrying 1911 pistols, on duty, in 2016, was really nice, as a single-column-mag 1911 is a true handgun. My true favorite one-hand handgun, however, is the Ruger GP100, with the original-pattern factory grip, with the perfect volume for my hand, for one-hand shooting and handling.

    If one has to reload one-handed, however, revolvers can be a challenge. I hope that your right hand is able to handle ammo, and enough mobility to be of some assistance.

    After decades of wear and tear, my right hand does not always do what my brain is telling it to do, so, a pistol that is prone to malfunction if “limp-wristed” is not the best candidate for a carry gun. I can shoot left-handed well enough*, but sometimes that right hand does not do a good job of running the slide. So, revolvers are my friends, and becoming my closer friends, as they are nicely ambidextrous, and not affected by an imperfectly-rigid wrist or imperfect grip.

    *I am naturally left-handed, but right-armed. I write lefty, and throw righty. Handgunning, for me, is largely ambidextrous, though I established my right hip as the default “primary” position during police academy training in 1983-1984. Drawing an L-Frame from the then-mandated low-slung duty rig was not unlike throwing underhanded.
    Dave T likes this.
  17. Milt1

    Milt1 Member

    Jan 4, 2014
    PRM, good write up and I'm glad you're hanging tough!
  18. Rodfac

    Rodfac Member

    Dec 13, 2012
    PRM what a bummer...glad though that you're on the mend. I'm 74 now, and a recent overhead branch vs. me on the tractor bush hogging was a wake up call. Do the PT as others have encouraged, and be safe...Best Regards for your speedy recovery. Rod
  19. Stophel

    Stophel Member

    Dec 13, 2009
    I just happened across this old 1988 video from the Indiana State Police showing reloading with Safariland speedloaders, including doing it one handed (as if one arm is injured)

    LAH and Milt1 like this.
  20. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

    Dec 5, 2018
    The Great American Prairie
    Ah good ol VHS! Love the wood panelling too haha.
  21. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Sixgun Nut

    Jan 27, 2006
    West Tennessee
    Hopefully it's a speedy recovery!

    If you're up for a challenge, you can work on one handed loading/unloading a single action. ;)



    Dec 30, 2007
    A full and speedy recovery. Skeeter Skelton noted the revolver is much more reloader friendly when it comes to retrieving brass.
  23. film495

    film495 Member

    Aug 26, 2019
    moral of the story, tree work is totally fine until it is not - and then it is a huge problem. oh, and revolvers are cool.
    PRM likes this.
  24. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

    Aug 11, 2004
    Back on Puget Sound
    And there you go, a perfect example of why revolvers are not obsolete.

    Having had surgery on both shoulders, I also re-discovered carry of revolvers (after the first time).

    I'd offer up a bunch of left-handed holsters, but experience (and my body) tell me that I may again find use for them some day ...
    Corpral_Agarn, Rexster and defjon like this.
  25. Hoppes Love Potion

    Hoppes Love Potion Member

    May 11, 2010
    Now let's do lever rifles one-handed:
    Stophel likes this.
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