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S&W .500 Mag Shooting thread

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by alfsauve, Jan 6, 2019.

  1. alfsauve

    alfsauve Member

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    <I know there's been this type of thread in the past but it's been a while and, well, this is my experience with it.>

    I've been itching to try the SW500 for some time. Finally went to a local range that had one for rent. The standard 8-3/8" version. I have shot a 14" T/C in 45/70 and thought I should be able to handle the 500. I regularly shoot .44mag for fun and actually completed the NRA Distinguished Marksmanship badge with one.

    I fired 6 rounds at 15yds. I didn't go to 25yds because the range owner wasn't sure where the gun was sited in. It wasn't comfortable but manageable. It twisted more in my hand that I would have liked. I think a slightly small grip would have helped. It would take another range session to work on my hold.

    I've got still pictures of the peak of recoil (yes I realize that at 30fps it may not actually have caught the very top) but of the 6 shots this was the one frame that was the most vertical, #5 shot if you're curious. Also the target. And no I didn't walk it into the center, just the opposite. The center was my first shot and the group, left and down were the other 5.

    Don't have a need to buy one and I'm glad I got that out of my system. I may go back at some point and try again to see if I can hold it better.

    Snapshot%202%20%281-6-2019%2010-41%20AM%29-M.png

    Snapshot%201%20%281-6-2019%2010-40%20AM%29-M.png

    20190104_122436-L.jpg

     
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  2. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    Nice. I would like to shoot a .460 Magnum more than the 500 for some reason. That is a big gun, just have been cool.
     
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  3. sugarmaker

    sugarmaker Member

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    The 500 will test your consistency of technique much more than a 44. I find The 300FTX factory loads are noisy but more forgiving of variations in hold than heavier bullets like 450 cast. My ears are now very noise/blast sensitive so the factory stuff is out for me. I shoot 300ftx at 1500FPS using 4227 very comfortably with the 6.5 inch. 450 at 1100 is about all I want for extended range shooting. Berrys 350 using red dot at 1,000 is much lower noise than my 44s and still satisfyingly punchy with good accuracy (better than my offhand standing ability) out to 75 yards where the local handgun range maxes out.
     
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  4. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    I own a fancy 5" barreled version from the PC. I find that a loose elbow and wrist mitigate much of the recoil. A pair of padded gloves will help extend shooting sessions.

    My second outing was much more fun and accurate than the first, due to the recoil factor in my brain.

    I haven't handloaded any for it yet, so I was using a hornady load. They have double the penetration of a 45 acp in my testing. I can say without a doubt that one will pass through a car door, and out through the other. At 10 yards, it penetrated the case and 5 thick stainless burners of a HVAC unit. The sixth one had a bulge big enough for a shooter marble to fit in.

    Mine, next to a 44mag Interarms Virginia Dragoon.

    20181223_090456.jpg

    My pops firing it. He doesn't like it. Too powerful for his worn out body. 40 years of construction takes a toll. ...As you can tell from the huge recoil, he isn't as strong as he used to be.

    20180303_155724.jpg
     
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  5. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Member

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    I've never shot a 500 but have owned a 5" 460 mag for years. X frames are fun, but yes, a bit punishing with some ammo.

    Glad you tried her out. Everyone should try an X frame at some point.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 7, 2019
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  6. Five shot groupie!

    Five shot groupie! Member

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    I've long since got over shooting heavy recoiling, miserable, if not painful hand cannons. Assorted. 44 mag & hot .357's taught me much but these lessons didn't stop me from experiencing the 500 at first opportunity. A friend bought one and I took him up on the chance to shoot it. All I can say is it is ample. Wow!
     
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  7. MaxP

    MaxP Member

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    I’ve shot that behemoth rather extensively, and the bulk/weight and effective brake do a good job at taming what would be a miserable experience in a “normal” sized revolver.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2019
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  8. captain awesome

    captain awesome Member

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    I am a big fan of them. They are just fun to shoot. I have the same version as BigBlue 94.
    It certainly does require good shooting discipline. But when properly executed I have found them to be extraordinarily accurate.
     
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  9. BigSteve57

    BigSteve57 Member

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    I got this plinker a while back because ...well...just because. :D
    It's a S&W 500 limited edition Bone Collector.
    The muzzle jump for me is very hard to control.
    The first few times I shot it my arms were nearly vertical after firing!
    I think this is due to the longer barrel making more of a "wrench"?

    I was very careful until I got the hang of it, only loading 1 round at a time.
    I don't shoot it often as my wrists give out after about 5 rounds.
    I can get a 6" group at 100 yards with the scope.

    That's a 500 S&W next to a .45 ACP for comparison purposes.
    Note the distance from the front of the cylinder to the end of the muzzle brake is 12 in. !
    BoneCollector+Cartridges-s.jpg

    IMG_2789as.jpg
     
  10. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    The 12" barrel and muzzle brake help with muzzle rise and recoil greatly over the short barrel and no brake on mine and cpt awesome's model. But yours has a louder report I'm sure. The added weight probably helps too.

    I'll agree, these things are super accurate
     
  11. Stumper

    Stumper Member

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    BigBlue, Please stop abusing trees. Can't you find something useless to shoot at...like a cow pie?;)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2019
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  12. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    I could see the 5" 460 S&W Mag would be a bit punishing.

    I have a 460 XVR with the 8-3/8" barrel and it is not really too bad to shoot although recoil is stout.

    I've found a load with Unique powder with 255 SWC cast bullets in a 460 Mag case that is quite pleasant to plink with.

    If I ever stumble across a deal on a 500 mag, I may indulge but I do not have any particular plans or desires to venture beyond the 460 Mag.

    I'm glad the OP got as chance to experience one of the S&W X frames. They are just plain cool.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2019
  13. WestKentucky

    WestKentucky Member

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    An X frame is definately on my list. I have shot a 500 a few years back as payment for my help in making it being creatively absent during a divorce... I bought it for $1.35 (20oz soda plus tax) with understanding that I sell it back once the divorce was over for the princely sum of a $2 bill. I got 20 rounds in before I called it quits. I must have one, but I’m not sure which variation, and I’m absolutely sure that She Who Must Be Obeyed would not approve.
     
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  14. 460Shooter

    460Shooter Member

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    Yeah the 325 and 360 gr loads are the ones I find a bit unpleasant

    I'm going to start loading my own this year. Excited to see what I cook up.
     
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  15. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    I only shoot dead trees, and that one is deader than elvis. It's actually a 6ft tall stump. Behind those cedars is a 20 ft tall brush pile and another 1/4 mile of trees and then half a mile of up sloping cornfield before the next road and subsequent house. Once we get moved in over there, I'll clear some more trees and build a proper berm with railroad ties for about a 300 yard range. They started framing the house this very morning in fact.

    I shot an old dead tree about 24" round with my sks so much as a kid that it fell over one day. Heard some creaks and snaps then boom, over went the tree.
     
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  16. WestKentucky

    WestKentucky Member

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    @BigBlue 94

    What is the story on the barrel on that S&W? I have not seen anything like that. Is it octagonal?
     
  17. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    That is a John Ross Custom from the S&W PC. In lieu of a muzzle brake, it has an external muzzle nut that cinches the barrel down to a cylinder gap of .004" +/- .0005". This boosts the velocity by 100 fps. It's a round barrel, just the nut is hex. It recoils more, but has less concussion due to no brake.

    @John Ross is still selling them I believe. Afaik, there have been only 500 made. 250 in stainless and 250 in black with a stainless cylinder. SN for my stainless one is JRC002X
     
  18. Master Blaster

    Master Blaster Member

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    Cool, .44 mag is the limit of what I choose to shoot from a handgun. If I need something more powerful, there is 30-30, .308, and 30.06 or 12 gauge slugs all are fired from a rifle.
    Just my preference. A friend of mine who played football in High School and College, now has had three shoulder surgeries and cannot fire a shotgun without great pain. Some things that are fun can take a physical toll on you over time. Pain is a warning.

    Doctor Doctor it hurts when I do X, Doctor: Stop doing X.
     
  19. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Member

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    Handling heavy recoil has more to do with technique than physical strength. It's mostly between the ears.
     
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  20. BigBlue 94

    BigBlue 94 Member

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    Sure, but he can barely hold any pistol steady. He may not have perfect form, but he's been shooting longer than I've been alive. My 22-250 savage pistol has more recoil, and he used to be fine with that. Broken shoulders, clavicles, and hands have taken their toll on his form and ability to control like he used to.

    I agree with the between the ears statement though. Mental perception of heavy recoil can cripple the best of shooters.
     
  21. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

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    But I don't wanna!
     
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  22. MikeInOr

    MikeInOr Member

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    A friend has an 8" 500 S&W and he let me shoot it with 500gr Buffalo Bore ammo (The really hot stuff). 1 shot was enough for me! I need the use of my hands too much to pop off the rest of the cylinder.

    I will stick with 50ae... Which is a baby in comparison. Of course my light weight 50ae Desert Eagle is softer shooting than my 8" Dan Wesson 44mag.

    I figure if I can't take it down with 8 rounds of 50ae I shouldn't have been shooting at it.
     
  23. Barry loyd

    Barry loyd Member

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    Nice Rumpole reference.
     
  24. Bert W.

    Bert W. Member

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    Rumpole reference? I thought it was from "She" by H. Rider Haggard, great book.
     
  25. Toprudder

    Toprudder Member

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    I have a 460. I eventually want to own a 500, though.

    When I first started shooting it, I would only load 1 round at a time. Eventually I got used to it, and last time out I shot 25 rounds through it. It is a very accurate gun if you don't let the recoil intimidate you. I load my own ammo for it now, some of the Hornady factory loads are difficult to extract, I download just enough so that is not a problem. I can't really tell the difference in recoil, though.

    I've got two friends that each have a 500. One day I would like all three of us to go to the indoor range and all of us do a cylinder dump at the same time. After we warn everyone first, of course!
     
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