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S&W 500---any owners with opinions?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Biggums, Sep 17, 2008.

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  1. Biggums

    Biggums Member

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    SORRY I FIRST POSTED THIS IN THE SEMI AUTO FORUM

    I just bought two of these beasts and am waiting for them to be delivered. One's the 8 incher and the other is the 4 inch. Both have compensators.

    I bought a few boxes of Hornady's red tip rounds and am wondering from owners what they think about theirs. Recoil, fun to shoot, accuracy or anything else you can fill me in.

    I will scope the big one and carry the 4 incher while hunting Elk as my bear, alien, big footm monster go to gun.

    Thanks
     
  2. clarence222

    clarence222 Member

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    I've had the 8" model fr about 2 years and love it. There was a company that was selling some 700 grain load for it. I bought some of those and they will hurt you. However the 400 and 500 grain loads aren't all that bad. I haven't shot mine a lot but it is fun to shoot. I also own a 454 Casull and any time I shoot it I have to wonder, who shot the 454 and decided that they needed something bigger. I'd certainly like to meet him,
     
  3. 19-3Ben

    19-3Ben Member

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    heh. for as many owners that you find with opinions, you'll find that the ones who don't own one have twice as many opinions!!!
     
  4. benderx4

    benderx4 Member

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    I don't have one of these beasts, nor have I ever shot one. But there is a big dude that brings his 460 into the range just about everytime I'm there. He has offered to let me shoot the thing, and perhaps some day I'll have the courage, but I've declined up to this point. It is incredibly loud, the muzzle flash is blinding, and I'm told that given an improper grip, the escape gases can take part of your thumb off. All that being said, if I were a hunter, and I hunted in bear country, I wouldn't be caught without one. Good luck!
     
  5. BroughtEnoughGun

    BroughtEnoughGun Member

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    I own the 8 3/8" comp model and its very manageable. I usually shoot anywhere between 20-40 rounds a session. I guess I can say this guns not for everybody because it is real loud and does have a good bit of recoil. I have 2 .454's a Ruger Alaskan and a Freedom Arms M83 w/7.5" bbl and the Leupold VX-III mounted on it with the SSK T'SOB mount and 3 rings and between the 3 guns the recoil and muzzle blast all feels the same to me, but thats just me. point is pretty much anything .454 or bigger you cant really tell the difference and theyre not all that bad or otherwise people wouldnt keep them or shoot them. just make sure to keep a good stance and flow with the recoil.
     
  6. Big Boomer

    Big Boomer Member

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    Lest not forget the BFR's :) this one broke my hand. Substantially more recoil than than the S&W's

    I've shot mine exactly 7 times before I cried...It now has new grips but haven't tried them out yet, along with a pair of shooting gloves. Took about 6 months for my hands to finally heal.

    500SmithandWessonBFR.jpg
     
  7. Redhawk1

    Redhawk1 Member

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    I have been shooting the 500 Mag since it hit the market. Well over 5 years now.
    I have owned 2 of the 8 3/8 inch models, a 10.5 inch model and a 4 inch model. I also have one in a 6 inch custom BFR. Currently I own 3 500 Mags, a 4 inch S&W a 6 inch BFR and a 10.5 inch OTT Encore.

    The recoil can be more than a handful to actually very manageable. I have seen a few people gravitate to the large bullets for the 500 Mag, I am guilty as well, but the truth be known, a 370 to 440 gr. bullet is the best weight for the 500 Mags and what I use 98% of time. You can kill anything on the planet with a 440 gr. bullet form the 500 Mag. There is no real need for any of the large bullets. JMHO

    I have taken deer, bear and hogs with my 500 Mag. All have been one shot kills. I estimate I have shot will over 7000 rounds of 500 mag, yes reloading is the way to go with the 500 Mag.
    I use hard cast bullets only, in my opinion they are the best.

    My S&W 4 inch 500 Mag has a custom end cap installed, I did not like the extra flash or noise of the compensator. The recoil in my opinion is the same, but the gun has more muzzle rise because of the end cap. But I still can get a second shot of very quick.

    My suggestion to you is, reload, keep the loads in a manageable range and stick to the 370 to 440 gr. bullet range. Then you will see how fun the 500 mag can be.
     
  8. Bigger is Better

    Bigger is Better Member

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    I've shot .500 S&W only two times, and only in single-shot Tanfoglio and Contender (the only two legal in Italy for the S&W fifty caliber): in both guns the shot has been a great emotion, that I'd like to feel with revolver too, but at the moment we can't. I've shot 440 grs Corbon with the Raptor and the shot was not so terrible and the recoil not too violent (it's an 89 oz. weight gun), while with the Contender the 440 grs Magtech had really hurt us (the owner of the gun and me): monstrous.
    Now I'm searching for make .500 S&W legal in Italy, at least in the BFR, 'cause I already know that a double action gun in this caliber could never be legal in my country. I'm sure of this!
    P.S. However I think that a cartridge like .50 Smith is more suitable and safe in a gun like SA BFR than in DA Smith and Wesson, but this is only a personal opinion.
     
  9. Redhawk1

    Redhawk1 Member

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    How it the 50 Cal more suitable and safe in a gun like SA BFR than in DA Smith and Wesson????
     
  10. Bigger is Better

    Bigger is Better Member

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    Sorry guys if my english don't let me explain what I want to say. I mean that in my opinion the structure of the BFR frame is stronger than S&W X-Frame.
    I hope this time you can understand me
     
  11. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

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    I own the 10.5 inch model.

    Recoil with the 275 gr Barnes is MILD, like a light .44 mag (if that's mild). With the 440 gr full-throttles, even this heavy revolver tries to put its front sight in your forehead, so be careful--noticeably above .475 Linebaugh. I'm still waiting to try out the 500-grainers.

    Accuracy is quite good, but shooting off-hand is a bear because of the barrel weight. Using sticks or a branch to support is MUCH better.

    I have had friends try it out, and all shot accurately; only one didn't want a second shot. Soon to christen it on hog hunt.
     
  12. Redhawk1

    Redhawk1 Member

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    I don't see that at all, the X-frame is a totally different beast within itself.
    I own both and I don't see one having the advantage over the other as far as strength. JMHO
     
  13. Bigger is Better

    Bigger is Better Member

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    Without doubt you have more experience than me on this way, considering that in Italy is never arrived neither one piece of .500 S&W revolvers.
    But I've shot with the .460 Hunter, and his frame is exploded in his owner's hands after about a cylinder of .460 soft loads. And like this story I've heard a lot more others on behalf of friends of mine about .460 and .500 S&W revolvers "explosions". This is my experience.
     
  14. CYANIDEGENOCIDE

    CYANIDEGENOCIDE Member

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    I have one with the 4" barrel. Got it for easy carry in bear country, haven't used it for such as of yet. I excepted recoil to be much worse (I use a tight grip and lock my elbows, then the gun just goes up over my head not in my head). I think the 440 gr rounds are easier on the eyes and ears than the 275's and 350's.
    I never noticed until I saw someone else with one but you can see the pressure wave move down range in all the little piece of paper and unburned powder on the floor, and in the hanging paper targets if they are within 30 feet.
     
  15. BADUNAME37

    BADUNAME37 Member

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    4" model

    I have the 4" model and have put 200-300 rounds through it.

    I had purchased quite a bit of factory ammo and worked up a load for it using Barnes XPB 275g bullets. 5 shots at 50 yards, are in a 1.5" group with one "flyer" out at 3" using open Millett sights (I replaced the rear factory sight with a Millett - Target .360" height, all black blade).
    [​IMG]
    Two Barnes 275g XPB's after going through 30" of water.
    Those six pedals have almost razor-sharp edges and points!

    As for recoil, the worst load I shot was a factory load 440g solid lead. That load felt like it was going to break my wrists. No other ammo has been as snappy as those loads. The 440 grain solid lead bullet went clear through a solid wood stump (approximately 16" wood). One bullet I recovered just protruding from the opposite side was perfectly intact. The hard lead would be excellent where a lot of penetration is necessary, such as in elephant, rhino, or other dangerous large game.

    I am hunting black bear now and will pop a coyote if I should see one. Yesterday I took out a woodchuck with it. I snuck up on it to about 15 yards, slowly knelt down, rested my left arm on my left knee and touched it off (SA). It basically turned it inside-out with about half of it missing which went somewhere that I couldn't find (probably vaporized).

    The Hogue grip from the factory is perfect. I bought a Pachmayr grip and put it on and didn't even bother firing the gun. The Pachmayr was so sloppy and loose feeling, compared to the factory Hogue, and the Pachmayr also covered some of the S&W 500 etched lettering on the side which I didn't like, so Pachmayr (actually MidwayUSA) took the grip back without any questions. I do like Pachmayr on certain guns, but not on this one.

    I've found that the front compensator loosens and S&W had to send me a new black allen-type screw holder (which locks the compensator on tight). I had it tight, then found that it had loosened on its own. After shooting, the vibration of the compensator caused some wear of the black screw arrangement, so the compensator couldn't tighten after that. When I got the new black screw, I used blue locktite on it to hold it secure as I have no reason to use the other one that comes with the gun made for lead bullets. After using locktite on it, it hasn't been a problem.

    I'm used to shooting large magnums. I had a couple of 44's and when the 454 Casull came out had one of them which I loaded for. I don't mind the recoil. I always use electronic earmuffs (Pro-Ear) so I can hear what's going on around me yet still protect my hearing.

    I purchased the Gene Desantis leather holster from the S&W web site which is a work of art and fits the gun perfectly. It's also adjustible with screws for tension holding the gun in place along with the leather tang with positive snap. It's worth every penny (or, should I say, DOLLAR!). If you get this holster, be sure to carefully remove the four black screws and apply Locktite to the threads and re-assemble the screws, as I found the screws a bit loose and didn't want to lose one (or more) while hunting.

    There is a bit of blow-by with certain loads (to bystanders). I called S&W technical department and they told me that is normal.

    Some of the loads I loaded actually feel like you have a campfire in front of you for a second or so after you shoot it. Of course, the ball of fire is about as large as a small car when using loads with ball powder.

    I noticed the gun screws were loosening, so I put maximum strength Locktite on ALL SCREWS!

    Do I like it? I don't like it, I LOVE IT!
    When I had the 454 Casull (10" barrel), I had wished then that I had the shorter-barreled version. Now, I finally have what I've wanted for over 20 years!

    If someone is against the big boomers, then that is their problem. I have no problem with smaller calibers as I, myself happen to own a .22 Ruger Mark II stainless Target Pistol - another gun that I love!
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2008
  16. Bigger is Better

    Bigger is Better Member

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    Me too: I love large magnums, and I love .454 Casull. I've had a SRH in .454, that I've sold :banghead: because, among many other things, his shots (or better the fire coming out from the muzzle) "annoy" the neightbours on the firing line, who don't bear even his "kaboom"... As***les! :cuss:
    Now I've the .480 SRH, that seems, instead, create no problems to the other people :rolleyes:
     
  17. Bitmap

    Bitmap Member

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    I love the M500. For me it is much more comfortable than a .454 SRH to shoot, but it is a lot bigger and heavier to carry for hunting. The recoil seems slower than the .454 - when shooting the .454 I stop shooting because my palms start protesting, when I shoot the .500 I stop when my forearms and wrists get tired.

    Accuracy is great.

    Lots of fun if you like putting big holes in things but it is tough on earth berm backstops.

    I wouldn't plan on long sessions with it, at least not at first. For me 40 rounds at a time is reasonable.
     
  18. MikeWSC

    MikeWSC Member

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    Have had the 8 3/8" barrel for a few years and haven't been sorry. Its accurate and a lot of fun to shoot. Have only been loading the 350 XTP's but picked up some 500 XTP's. The Barnes 275's really look awsome! Deadly on deer and plan on taking it out west for elk next year.
     
  19. BADUNAME37

    BADUNAME37 Member

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    From what I've read in many locations, including the Barnes site and in the Barnes Reloading Manual, figure the bullet weight that you would typically use for the size and type of game being hunted, then back down to the next lightest bullet if you are going for the X bullet. That's why I've selected the 275g for black bear and deer hunting.

    The reasoning behind this is that the X pedals open up and the velocity and weight of the bullet along with those opened-up pedals result in major internal damage and hydraulic shock damage.
     
  20. Redhawk1

    Redhawk1 Member

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    I think your friend's are blowing smoke up your back side.

    I know a number of people with the 460 and 500 Mags, and I still have not seen one blown up except one that was shown on line that was double loaded with tight group powder. That was loader error not a problem with the gun, that can happen to any gun out there that is loaded improperly.

    I also have the S&W 460 Mag with about 3000 rounds down the tube.
     
  21. BADUNAME37

    BADUNAME37 Member

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    I wonder if someone said: "Fill the cases with bullseye and let's see what will happen":fire: :eek: :fire: :eek: :fire: :eek: :fire: :eek:

    This is tongue-in-cheek!
    PLEASE, NO ONE ACTUALLY DO THIS!
     
  22. Redhawk1

    Redhawk1 Member

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    Not a smart thing to do at all....
     
  23. Poprivit

    Poprivit Member

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    In 2006, I took a real old stink bull giraffe with my S&W Performance Center 500 Mag 10.5 inch barrel. I was using Hornady 500-gr. bullets. I now have a 4-inch that I shoot 600-gr. Ballistic Supply ammo in. They also have a 700-gr. but it won't stabilize in a 4-inch. I always wear a shooting glove.

    600-gr. ballistics
    MV - 1250 fps
    ME - 2082 ft-lb

    Oh yeah, first shot in the lungs and 10 minutes later, another in the neck, right through the spine. He weighed over 2200 lb and stood 18'6". The meat fed a lot of villagers, the trophy is in my room.
     
  24. BADUNAME37

    BADUNAME37 Member

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    Poprivit

    IMPRESSIVE! :)
     
  25. Biggums

    Biggums Member

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    Thanks for the good info. Got both of them at home now 4 incher and a 8 3/8. The 4 incher came with the Disantis leather holster. Wow what quality the rig is! I bought a box of Hornady 300 grain red tip rounds for her ($57.00). When the weather allows we'll see what these guns will do.
     
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