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Smith and Wesson model 36

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Comrade Mike, May 28, 2013.

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  1. Comrade Mike

    Comrade Mike Member

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    I may come to acquire a model 36 chief special in the near future. I've read a couple remarks saying that the model 36 is not for regular shooting at the range for various reasons related to long term durability.

    This doesn't make any sense to me, the frame looks just as strong and well built as any smith and Wesson. I don't understand where these claims come from. It's not one of the super light air wights, it's all blued steel. I just can't see the low pressure .38 special doing much damage to a gun of any size.

    I don't buy dainty guns I can't shoot as often as I want to. So what's the truth here? Can I shoot a model 36 as much as I shoot my model 10?
     
  2. rchery59

    rchery59 Member

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    I'm no SW expert but that gun is all steel, you should be able to shoot it forever. A steady diet of +P is not recommended though. I have thousands of rounds thru my model 60 ,still tight
     
  3. Iggy

    Iggy Member

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    I suspect if you limit the 36 to standard velocity rounds, it will last longer than your wrist will.
     
  4. PRM

    PRM Member

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    Nor do I think the OP would want to.:rolleyes: I've been shooting J frames since the mid-70s. Just about always have one on trips to the range - 99.9% of all rounds have been standard velocity .38s. They are just as tight today as when I brought them home. You are not going to hurt a steel S&W by shooting it with ammo that falls within factory specs for the gun.
     
  5. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Truth be known, the steel Chiefs Special/Bodyguard is almost as strong a gun as the K-Frame .357 Magnum.

    1. The 5-shot cylinder puts the thin locking bolt notches between the chambers instead of on top of them.

    2. There is no exposed forcing cone with a weakened gas ring clearance cut like on the K-Frame.

    3. All Model 36's ever made had fully heat treated frames & cylinders, just like the K-Frame Magnums.

    I have a Model 49 Bodyguard I bought new in 1971 that is still as good as new.
    And it has digested a whole lot of what would be considered +P & +P+ reloads by todays pressure standards.

    rc
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2013
  6. PabloJ

    PabloJ Member

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    I would look at equivalent size second-hand Colt (I think it was called Detective Special or something similar). The cylinder of the Colt holds one extra cartridge.
     
  7. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    But, it is not as durable as the S&W J-Frame, and certainly not when firing +P ammo in it.

    You don't even want to do that with a Colt Detective Special.

    rc
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2013
  8. PabloJ

    PabloJ Member

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    The average factory load you allude to moves about 100fps faster then standard loading. Not worth bothering imo.
     
  9. Comrade Mike

    Comrade Mike Member

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    Aside from self defense ammo the only thing shot out of it will be my low pressure range ammo.

    Thanks for setting my mind at ease, I knew something was fishy with what I had read.
     
  10. Jim NE

    Jim NE Member

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    I didn't think my old J frames would be all that strong or durable. I was wrong, I'm happy to say. I don't know how S&W did it, but they made 'em strrong. Even the old alloy frame 37's are strong.
     
  11. MICHAEL T

    MICHAEL T Member

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    Buy a 36 their great pistols I will not own any of the new S&W pistols Its not the lock . They just don't seem the quality oF a S&W from 1950's 60's 70's early 80's. I own no S&W that not a pin barrel or firing pin not on hammer.
     
  12. Catpop

    Catpop Member

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    I bought a M60 about 1975. Carried it in the woods every day for wild dogs when I cruised timber solo in eastern NC. Its had thousands of rounds through it, mostly JHP and shot (snakes). Tight and as-new today! One of the best buys I ever made at $133 (I think).
     
  13. HexHead

    HexHead Member

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    You can shoot +P in the 3rd edition steel Detective Specials, just not in the alloy framed Cobra or Agent.
     
  14. MartinS

    MartinS Member

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    "I've read a couple remarks saying..."
    You want to read, read. You want to shoot, shoot. I dare you to wear it out. I Triple Dog Dare You.
     
  15. Comrade Mike

    Comrade Mike Member

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    Guess now I really have to lick the flag pole :D
     
  16. oldbear

    oldbear Member

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    What RCMODEL SAID.........
     
  17. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    I don't know who told you the M36 was a weak revolver but as you can see from the posts, no one here thinks so. I bought a almost new M36 made in 1975 a few years back and I do shoot it often. It's as tight now as the day I bought it, it's a very strong revolver.
     
  18. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    Haven't found a Model 36 (or 37, 38, 49, or 649 for that matter), that I have been able to wear out from shooting it too much. Love those J frames!
     
  19. 351 WINCHESTER

    351 WINCHESTER Member

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    Back in the 70's and 80's I put many a +P and +P+ thru my model 60 and later a 640 with no ill effects other than a little endshake. These are tough little guns.
     
  20. ghitch75

    ghitch75 Member

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    picked this 36 up for the g/f to carry......she didn't care for it......likes her Mustang better...i have a 37 that i pocket carry from time to time

    4jq2r7.jpg
     
  21. Comrade Mike

    Comrade Mike Member

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    Well guys would you just look what followed me home?

    egutuzyz.jpg
     
  22. Comrade Mike

    Comrade Mike Member

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    Aaaaand Family photo!

    ImageUploadedByTapatalk1370386550.656820.jpg
     
  23. ZVP

    ZVP Member

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    i don't know why for the life of me...

    There are some really nice Model-36's floating around and a week never passes without some fool wanting to harm the little guns with +P's!
    WHy not just buy a 2" .357 and have all the power that you want?
    I have a Nixkled, Bobbed and regripped .36 no dash that I'd NEVER dream of harming like that!
    Heck a basic Full power .38 Special was and is enough to defend your life with so why mess with success? In the Great Miami Shootout, the little .38Special proved it's worth as a combat cartrige, downing more foes than any other meduim caliber!
    I am sold on the combination of a 36 and the .38 Special for daily carry! It's small, light, powerfull and wondererfully concealable
    If you need more gun, buy and use it!
    BPDave
     
  24. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Mmmm?

    Because a limited diet of todays anemic +P .38 Spl won't hurt one in a lifetime.

    And because todays .357 version is heavier, longer, and not much stronger.

    rc
     
  25. Comrade Mike

    Comrade Mike Member

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    I don't shoot +P loads out of either gun. I don't even carry +P .38's just standard pressure hollow points. For the range they're shooting my plated bullet reloads and they shoot them phenomenally.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2013
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