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Taurus 85 SS2 better than S&W Equivalent (637)??

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by GWARGHOUL, Dec 11, 2012.

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  1. GWARGHOUL

    GWARGHOUL Member

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    I was just wondering if I was the only one to notice or feel this way..

    The guns externally look almost identical. I have no idea how much the internals vary.

    I have a Taurus 85 Stainless (85SS2) not a untralite..

    Even though I had a broken cylinder stop on my 85 (unknown what caused it, may have been on its way to being defective from the beginning, but was repaired in 7 or 8 days round trip by Taurus on 100% their dime),
    I have handled (but admitted not shot) a few newer Smith and Wesson 637's, and I feel that the Taurus is a better gun. A little bit cheaper too.

    The Taurus feels stronger, more rigid, and has more metal, and seems to have more bulk where it counts, like for example having a protected ejector rod and a "fuller" barrel.

    The Taurus has a smaller front sight, as in it does not gradually go up the entire barrel.. less to snag on..

    Seems like the Taurus has a more ergonomic and comfortable grip, and while other aspects of the gun appear virtually identical, the frame seems a little smoother on the eyes.

    The lockup has been about the same with both brands, and the better trigger has actually been on the Taurus.

    While there are a few things about my 85 that are not 100% perfect as in robot made and milled.. it seems to all go together and handle/feel better.

    Oh, and shooting.. it hits better than the last smith I did shoot (can't recall the model.. but was proclaimed as one of the "heyday" snubbies").
    goes where I want it, and is easy on the hand..

    Am I the only one who is very fond of these Taurii?
     
  2. Quoheleth

    Quoheleth Member

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    Glad you like yours - that's what counts in the end.

    That said, I suspect you're in the wide minority in a Taurus vs Smith comparison.

    Q
     
  3. S&Wfan

    S&Wfan Member

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    I love your comment about how the M85 broke; how you don't know how the insides are, yet how you "feel" the Taurus is a better revolver.

    I've seen folks bring Taurus guns to the range, and also to the matches and try to compete. One even had their front sight fly off during a pin match . . . and he still loved that thing!!!

    The main thing is this . . . you like it!
     
  4. rule303

    rule303 Member

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    The 85 is a good gun. I wouldn't say it is better than a Smith, but if you like it, it will serve you well. A gun from any manufacturer can have issues, but Taurus seems to have more than others. The 85, along with the 66, and PT92 are generally very well liked by people who actually own them.
     
  5. 788Ham

    788Ham Member

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    Mmmm, thats kind of like comparing an old Boy Scout knife and a Randall, they both have blades, thats where the comparing stops!
     
  6. TennJed

    TennJed Member

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    I would not make a comparison like that unless I had at least shot both
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2012
  7. clang

    clang Member

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    You have to compare the Taurus 85 SS to a S&W Model 60 for an apples to apples comparison. They are both stainless steel 5 shot snubies.

    The 637 is more like the Taurus 85 Ultralite. Alloy guns are much lighter and feel less substantial in your hand. I have an 85 Ultralite, it' a decent gun, but feels nothing like my stainless steel S&W Model 60. This is mainly a function of the construction material, not the design.

    Also keep in mind the grips can make a big difference. Pachmayr Compacs are my personal favorites.

    As for reliabilitiy and resale value, most people prefer the S&W (myself included).
     
  8. BYJO4

    BYJO4 Member

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    You can't compare the feel of a stainless gun to that of an alloy frame gun. I feel the quality of materials and cosmetics are better in S&Ws and they will they will outlast a Tarus.
     
  9. bainter1212

    bainter1212 Member

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    Last time I was at my LGS I compared the S&W 637 Airweight side by side with the Taurus 85 Ultralite. When picking up one and cocking/dry firing, then immediately doing the same to the other, I noticed that the Smith had a much smoother and easier cycling action, a much better asthetic finish, however the 85 grip was noticeably better. At only $20 more though, my judgement was that the Smith was a better value. Can't beat a Smith (I might be a little biased when it comes to revolvers - don't like Smith autos though.)
     
  10. BSA1

    BSA1 Member

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    It just so happen I was looking at handguns with my daughter yesterday as she wants to get her ccw permit. The fit and finish of the Taurus was equal to the S&W.

    IMHO the internal lock of the Taurus is superior to the S&W.

    How well they compare when shooting can only be determine on the range.
     
  11. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    Glad that you're satisfied with your Taurus, but I don't feel they're better built than any currently made S&W revolver.

    A couple of years ago I was looking for a lightweight snubby with a concealed hammer. Tried out a number of Taurus models but couldn't find one that had a decent trigger, solid lock-up, and a better fit and finish than a comparable S&W Model 638.
     
  12. snooperman

    snooperman Member

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    To get a good perspective on the debate between Taurus vs S&W, I would turn to gunsmiths like Grant Cunningham and others, who have worked on them and know their strengths and weaknesses. Taurus guns are difficult to bring up to par with a S&W according to Grant in his latest book. Their parts do not fit properly to improve them the way a S&W can be.
     
  13. Guillermo

    Guillermo member

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    in the name of disclosure, I loath the fact that S&W quality has plummeted and they employ all kinds of cost-cutting methods in what they market as a premium gun.

    The methods by which they produce Taurus and S&W revolvers are virtually identical but a discussion on a THR thread made me investigate the end product.

    Since I have no desire to own a revolver filled with injection molded parts my only recent experience is with friends guns. So in order to answer my THR friends I went to McBride's, a local gun store that enjoys the highest sales volume in the country. If it is available, they have it.

    I looked at a couple of Taurus' and S&W snubbies.

    Forgive me but I do not remember all of the specifics but the overall impression was that neither one was a quality piece. I do remember that the Taurus' had abysmal triggers and one of the S&W's had a horrendous crane/frame fit. The S&Ws, overall, seemed to have less issues.

    All of this is to say that both are such a mixed bag. No matter which way you go, read the revolver sticky at the top of the page and go over the gun with a fine toothed comb.

    Both of these manufacturers kick out a lot of lemons.

    Tread carefully my friend.
     
  14. snooperman

    snooperman Member

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    Yes Guillermo, that is why I buy the older S&W guns. Last week I found an old pre-model 10 made in 1946 with the long action and 6" pencil barrel. A little blue off but very nice for $320 and the trigger was very smooth. I can't resist the older guns and have been shooting here at the range for a week.
     
  15. bikemutt
    • Contributing Member

    bikemutt Member

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    Admittedly an academic exercise but, imagine for a minute what the result would be if the comparable S&W, Rossi and Taurus guns all sold for the same price.
     
  16. 25cschaefer

    25cschaefer Member

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    The Taurus internals are more simple but not as adjustable or "slickable" as the Smith. The Taurus uses a transfer bar safety and the Smith uses a hammer block. If the Taurus safety breaks, you cannot shoot; if the Smith breaks you can. There are less things that can go wrong with the Taurus but, the quality of the Smith should prevent things from going wrong. In my opinion, the one you like is best.
     
  17. GWARGHOUL

    GWARGHOUL Member

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    I'm not talking ultralites of either brand. Quite frankly, the machining, fit and finish on both brand UL's were sub-par.

    I don't see S&W with their cost cutting building ANY different than any new Taurus.

    They even look pretty much the same, only difference being the front sight ramp, and Taurus has a protected ejector rod.
     
  18. OARNGESI

    OARNGESI Member

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    how does the triggers compare?
     
  19. BigWoolyBanjo

    BigWoolyBanjo Member

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    I had the exact same gun break the same way twice. Yes, Taurus did fix it and return it quickly, but come on, twice? That lead me to trade it in for something I felt safe carrying (Ruger SP101).

    I will never spend my hard earned money on another Taurus product. Learned my lesson.

    Go with the Smith
     
  20. BBQLS1

    BBQLS1 Member

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    In general, S&W and Ruger make better revolvers, but not for the price. There are a few S&Ws snubs out there that do feel cheap compared to a Taurus. These are the cheaper S&W CC guns.

    S&W and Ruger hold their value better than Taurus.

    That being said, Taurus generally works pretty well. I carry a used and worn Taurus 605 99% of the time because it works fine for me and it's not worth very much (about $225). I can't get another EDC for what I could get out of it, so I just keep it, and use it.

    I've had 4 Taurus Revolvers and all have worked well for me. Got 2 of them now.
     
  21. GWARGHOUL

    GWARGHOUL Member

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    The trigger feels better on my 85. It lets ya know its there, I can't explain that.

    Cool, more for me and the millions of others.

    Exactly. I spent $289 and had it transferred in for $20, free shipping. The S&W 637 is about $340, and didn't feel as solid.

    I don't have to worry about holster wear on my Taurus.

    Exactly.. like the 637 I'm comparing the85 too. The 85 hands down is a more solid gun, in my opinion.


    I broke my 85, or the shipper, distributor, or hell maybe even the FFL I had it transferred too. They had it back to me in 8 days, fixed solid, and with a detailed repair description.

    I find that satisfying, not funny. Needless to say, I treated it the same just throwin it in the pocket, letting sawdust get all in it, and banged around until I finally got a in-pocket holster for it a few weeks ago. Shoots like a charm, locks up well.. lifetime warranty (not sure if S&W has that?)..customer service was good to me, repair was quick and good to me..

    I don't know how to completely strip down the lower and upper end of a 426 HEMI, but its a good engine, and a performer.


    I don't plan on selling the gun. Ever, so resale value is of no issue. I suspect I can get my $289 back, or pretty darn close.

    No doubt, which is why I have no reason saving some money. Inspect and test ANY new revolver from either of the two. I got a good one, and I think it knocks the socks off the Smith 637.

    Maybe you're right. My dad had a 60 Cheif's special made in the late 70's early 80's. Nice gun. Wasn't +p rated, and all of a sudden S&W claims leaps and bounds of technology in metallurgy makes it possible to consistently shoot +p loads out of a gun that was originally nothing more than a rushed sized up mock up from a .32 revolver...

    Not bashing on the Smith. You gotta look over each these days. They aren't the same smiths of yesteryear. yet the Taurus.. well, I think they are getting better, and the 85 always had at minimum a good reputation.
     
  22. GWARGHOUL

    GWARGHOUL Member

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    I want to add that the frame feels more ergonomic, and looks a little easier on the eyes than the model 60, or the 637 both. If I ran out of ammo, I suspect it wold make a better weapon too.
     
  23. Jaymo

    Jaymo Member

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    I've never shot a Taurus revolver that didn't have a better factory trigger than a J or K frame Smith.
    Smiths are vastly overrated by fanboys, just like Glocks.
    I like Smiths and Glocks, but I don't worship them.
    Smith has been resting on their prewar laurels for many, many years.
     
  24. bdb benzino

    bdb benzino Member

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    I don't think you are understanding, you are comparing an all steel Taurus 85 to an aluminum framed light weight S&W 637. If you want a better comparison, use a S&W 60 or 36 to see what an all steel S&W feels like. The steel framed revolver is always gonna feel more solid than an aluminum one!
     
  25. dawei

    dawei Member

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    I have owned ten Taurus® revolvers.
    • Mdl 85B2CH 38 Special - 1994
    • Mdl 669SS4CP 357 Magnum - 1996
    • Mdl 85B2 38 Special - 1997
    • Mdl 617SS2 357 Magnum - 2003
    • Mdl 605SS3 357 Magnum - 2006
    • Mdl 85SS2UL 38 Special - 2007
    • Mdl 605SS2 357 Magnum - 2010 (Replaced with a 2012 605SS2)
    • Mdl 425SS2 41 Remington® Magnum - 2012
    • Mdl 605SS2 357 Magnum - 2012 (Replaced 2010 605SS2)
    • Mdl 85SS2UL 38 Special - 2012

    All have performed superbly and I continue to shoot them all almost every week.

    I have only encountered these problems.........
    • Mdl 85B2CH broke a firing pin (part# 19) after 11,000+ rounds. I replaced the firing pin & it's still going strong.
    • Mdl 85SS2UL had the cylinder stop (part# 44) wear down after 10,000 rounds. Called Taurus® and they shipped the part right away. Installed new cylinder stop and now the gun works fine.

    I have zero complaints with Taurus® customer service. The times I had to send a gun in they fixed and returned it when they said they would. Specifically.....................
    • Mdl 617 developed excessive cylinder to forcing cone gap (.011") after almost 6,000 rounds. I sent it to Taurus® and they replaced the cylinder (part# eight and adjusted the yoke [part# 9]) I've since put 3,000+ rounds through it and it's still going strong.
    • Mdl 605SS2 cylinder would not advance to next chamber after shot and trigger would not reset (after 5,400 rounds). Taurus® replaced the firearm with a new (2012 605SS2)


    Taurus® is the only gun manufacturer that warrants the firearm; and not the original purchaser. You could be the 50th owner of a used Taurus® (1977 or later), or Rossi® (1999 or later); and you have a lifetime warranty. No other firearm manufacturer offers this, NONE!

    I will not hesitate to buy additional Taurus® revolvers. They are an outstanding value.
    Here is a wealth of Taurus® information..........

    Taurus Firearms Forum - TaurusArmed.net
     
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