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Should I even be worried? revolver

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by xtralogic, Apr 22, 2009.

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  1. xtralogic

    xtralogic Member

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    I keep reading more about revolvers failing and it being unfix able on the spot....i know that things happen and guns are tools and any tool can break...what do you think about ruger revolver reliability vs xd.....both seem to have great things said about them....are some autos(sig..xd..glock) just as reliable as revolvers...or the odds as far as going bang gonna always be the the revolver....sometimes i think i am gonna only be a revolver guy(talking when only using for self defense) then i think i am just being to worried....but why gamble...is a safe bet getting a revolver and getting to the point i can put all 5..6..rounds in a area the size of playing card...:fire:
     

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  2. Dr. Fresh

    Dr. Fresh Member

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    Carry both. I would.
     
  3. nalioth

    nalioth Member

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    Any mechanical device can fail.

    You should be prepared with a backup plan.

    This may include another gun (as the first respondent mentions).

    It may include pepper spray.

    It may include a weekly visit to your local dojo.


    If you are prepared for your weapons to fail, you should survive most anything.
     
  4. General Geoff

    General Geoff Member

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    The major difference in reliability between revolvers and semiautomatics is that semiautomatics rely on very consistent ammunition/powder charges in order to cycle the action. Revolvers instead rely on complex lockwork and the increased effort of manual cocking or a heavy trigger pull to cycle the action.

    So basically it comes down to how much you trust your ammo.
     
  5. Mr. Bojangles

    Mr. Bojangles Member

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    Regardless of whether it is a revolver or a semiautomatic pistol, buy a quality firearm. Don't waste time or money on even mid-grade firearms. If your life ever depends on it you will be glad you spent the extra money.
     
  6. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Member

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    Over a period well exceeding a half-century I have seen far more disabled pistols then revolvers. More often then not the causes were:

    1. Poor quality ammunition.
    2. Bad magazines.
    3. Stupid tampering with the lockwork.
    4. Over-tight fitting for a serious weapon.

    In current revolvers most problems can be traced to a lack of quality control and inspection during the manufacturing process. Since I am elderly, a lot of my personal handguns are too. I have revolvers that have gone through thousands of rounds with no malfunctions whatsoever. I can't say that about all of the pistols, but to be fair - jams were infrequent, and usually associated with less then perfect reloads.
     
  7. Hawk

    Hawk Member

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    I've had more issues with revolvers than autoloaders but honesty would compel me to note that this says more about the used market than it does about the platform.

    In your case with a presumably NIB Ruger you won't have filed strain screws, bent flat springs or wire-cutter molested coil springs. You'll also be largely exempt from unscrewing extractor rods and the general loosening of screws.

    Light strikes are the bane of (typically used) revolvers - in my worst case I couldn't get six rounds to light in 18 tries - double action, single action, didn't matter. This would not be fun in a social context.

    I carry a semi and practice malf drills. Were I to carry a revolver I would thread lock the strain screw (if applicable), keep it scrupulously clean (crud under the ejector star is a no-no) and avoid "sweetening" the trigger - I would also avoid buying from anyone that had done so.

    IMHO, obsessing over the platform is counter productive and leads to acid reflux and hives. Handguns are compromises that launch pellets and your choice will tell us much about how you personally weigh the various compromised elements but little about the platform.

    They all have their own little issues - it's better to learn to address those issues than to engage in internet debate with the intent of convincing yourself or others that the issues don't exist.

    Mindset, skillset, toolset - in that order.*


    *unattributed 'cause I don't know who said it first.
     
  8. Thaddeus Jones

    Thaddeus Jones Member

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    No, I don't think you should be worried. Consider where you read the problems ;).

    If you are concerned about your carry revolver, using the Jim March revolver check out sticky here, or have a competent gunsmith examine it.

    I've carried a revolver for going on 40 years, and never had a problem that prevented one from going bang. I am meticulous in the care and cleaning of my revolvers, and only use pre lock S&W revolvers, or Rugers, for carry. The only current production revolvers I would purchase for carry would be Rugers. The GP100 and SP101 are excellent. I prefer 1980 - 1999 pre lock S&W's. My current favorite being a 3" model 66.

    Most of my revolvers were purchased used, LNIB. I check them out at the shop, and if I find a problem, I don't purchase. I then fire 200 or more rounds through them. In my experience that is sufficient to uncover any problems that may exist. I only use factory ammunition as well. Maybe I'm just lucky ;)

    Many things you read on the internet, or hear in gunshops, are entertaining or troubling, but not necessarily true. Read and research, and if possible try out handguns you are considering before you purchase. Many pitfalls may be avoided in this manner. Good luck!
     
  9. Duke of Doubt

    Duke of Doubt member

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    If my Smith Model 29-3 .44 magnum ever failed, I'd be so shocked the badguy wouldn't have to shoot me; my heart would have stopped beating and I would have fainted dead away.

    The only revolver I have which I wouldn't entirely trust for HD is an ancient Colt Officer's Model Target, built in 1911 and rather worn. Cylinder doesn't QUITE latch up tight one or two times out of six without a little nudge, and she's a little loosy-goosy. Hammer can sort of lock up once in a blue moon if she isn't locked up right. I need to fix her. Other than that, all my revolvers, no matter how old and how worn-looking, function flawlessly no matter what wierd load I run through them. Shotshells, wadcutters, magnums, LRN, ball, they love it all. Can't say the same about some autoloaders I have owned.
     
  10. Steve C

    Steve C Member

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    Revolvers are very reliable but when they have a failure there's generally no quick fix that you can do in a few seconds to make it fire. Semi auto's have relatively many more failures due to the interdependence of ammo, magazines and shooter handling BUT when you get a jam you can usually clear it and make the gun fire in a few seconds.

    Like with any mechanical device the better its maintained the better reliability it has. Keeping the pistol or revolver clean and well lubricated is the first step. Understand the workings of the device and what causes most failures and they can be avoided.
     
  11. publiuss

    publiuss Member

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    Ain't nothing on earth more reliable than a Ruger revolver.
     
  12. Gunfighter123

    Gunfighter123 Member

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    Simply put , the odds are a revolver is more reliable.

    As others have said --- more to go wrong with a semi-auto due to mags,springs, and ammo.

    After shooting tens of thousands of rounds thru revolvers --- about the ONLY things that have gone wrong were high primers {my reloads} binding up the cyld. and had 2 or 3 times where the extractor rod worked loose due to recoil and "freezeing" up the revolver.

    That being said --- my number 1 pick for a SD handgun is a semi-auto.
     
  13. psyopspec

    psyopspec Member

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    When I first started carrying, I thought I would be a semi-auto only guy in my gun collecting and CCW carrying. I've since learned the benefits of wheelguns, and fallen in love with what a finely tuned SA .45 Colt or .357 feels like in the hand.

    For carry, I still stick with semi-autos primarily because of familiarity and capacity, but I do have a 5 shot J Frame which is sometimes carried as a back up or becomes the primary when a larger gun is not practical. I would be comfortable with either, but whatever you choose, research the purchase for quality, train with your defensive firearm, and do some QC of your own by putting some rounds down range.
     
  14. Dr. Fresh

    Dr. Fresh Member

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    Define mid-grade. There are plenty of expensive jamo-matics out there, and tons of less expensive 100% reliable pistols.
     
  15. Duke of Doubt

    Duke of Doubt member

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    Dr. Fresh: "Define mid-grade."

    I'd define "mid-grade" as something like a Ruger, a nice Charter Arms, or for autoloaders a Springfield XD or one of the imported Colt clones. Not a fine piece of craftsmanship, not anything beautiful or impeccably machined; a few shorcuts taken in fitting parts and finishing, but a decent design competently executed at a low price. As compared to Smiths and Colts on the high end, or Taurus and RG on the low end.
     
  16. hemiram

    hemiram Member

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    Some people will spend huge amounts of $$$ on expensive guns, and be disapointed (To put it mildly) when they aren't as reliable as the "junk" gun someone else has. I had a friend who bought expensive 1911's like popcorn, and the vast majority of them aren't as relaible as the "junk" guns I have, like my EAA Witness .45, or even worse, my Astra A-100. Both of which are about as reliable as a semiauto could be. Are they as accurate? Nope, but they are accurate enough, and they WORK.
     
  17. Duke of Doubt

    Duke of Doubt member

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    hemiram: "Some people will spend huge amounts of $$$ on expensive guns, and be disapointed (To put it mildly) when they aren't as reliable as the "junk" gun someone else has."

    And once in awhile a Ford Festiva would last 200,000 miles and a Mercedes 190E would conk out at 150,000. But that is the exception, and saying that it sometimes happens doesn't put the Festiva on the same level as the 190E. Now, if you were to say, "I've personally owned a Colt and it fell apart in my hands one day at the range, but I've put 10,000 rounds through my RG and it still looks and functions great," I'd be more impressed.
     
  18. Carl Levitian

    Carl Levitian member

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    [Should I even be worried? revolver

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I keep reading more about revolvers failing and it being unfix able on the spot....i know that things happen and guns are tools and any tool can break...what do you think about ruger revolver reliability vs xd.....both seem to have great things said about them....are some autos(sig..xd..glock) just as reliable as revolvers...or the odds as far as going bang gonna always be the the revolver....sometimes i think i am gonna only be a revolver guy(talking when only using for self defense) then i think i am just being to worried....but why gamble...is a safe bet getting a revolver and getting to the point i can put all 5..6..rounds in a area the size of playing card...
    Attached Thumbnails]



    You're worrying for nothing.

    I bought a new Smith and Wesson model 60 in 1970.

    I bought a new Smith and Wesson model 64 in 1972.

    I bought a new Smith and Wesson model 18 in 1973.

    I have put tens of thousands of rounds through those guns, and still shoot them. In all the years I've had them, I have not had a single malfunction of any kind. They have been cleaned, well maintained, and periodicly inspected for wear on the ratchet and cylinder hand, and other parts.

    Find me an auto pistol that has been shot for over 30 years and never had a malfunction.
     
  19. Dr. Fresh

    Dr. Fresh Member

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    If your definition is the same as Bojangles's then mid-grade firearms sound perfect for the OP.
     
  20. colorado_handgunner

    colorado_handgunner Member

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    Based on my experience with the XD (own one) and the torture tests I've seen, I say you can't go wrong with it. Name me a revolver that can go 20,000 rounds, through ice, mud, sand, and water and come out still shooting just as well as when you started. The XD can.
     
  21. sgt127

    sgt127 Member

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    Most autos fail during the feeding or ejection cycle. Since on a revovler, those are done by hand, prior to shooting and after you are done, those malfunctions cannot occur with a revolver while you are shooting it. Can other things go wrong, yes. Can parts break? Yes. Can you stick an auto in a bad guys gut and push it out of battery? Possibly. Can you limp wrist a revolver? No. For the average person to person deadly force problem, the revolver may have an advantage. If you decide to shoot your way out of a bank takeover robbery against 3-4 armed gunman, you may be undergunned with a revolver. At that time, you may be undergunned with an AR at that point....
     
  22. Arcticfox

    Arcticfox Member

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    LMAO!
     
  23. loop

    loop Member

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    This my 50th year of shooting. In that time I've seen many malfunctions with many firearms.

    I trust a well-tuned, quality auto as much as I trust a revolver.

    I've seen autos fail more often than revolvers, but revolvers tend to be what I would categorize as catastrophic failures. In other words, they cannot be fixed on the spot. Autos tend to simply jam and are able to be cleared quickly and easily. That is not to say autos are immune to catastrophic failures.

    I prefer autos for carry guns, but all mine are carefully tuned and maintained. I think revolvers are more prone to failure in some cases because the owners are overly confident and do not maintain them well.

    I shoot IDPA twice a month. So far this year I've seen four or five autos become unserviceable during a match and two revolvers. If you shoot enough with enough people you will see a lot of failures.

    I'll throw this out. Of the guns that were not unserviceable during a match this year both revolvers were Smith & Wessons. All of the autos except one were Springfields. The other auto to fail was a Glock. Guns are machines - machines break.
     
  24. BhmBill

    BhmBill Member

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    No parts had to be replaced?

    What did the "torture tests" entail?
     
  25. Deanimator

    Deanimator Member

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    I carry revolvers and semi-autos interchangeably. Properly configured and cared for, either will more than adequately allow you to defend your life.
     
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