Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Taurus vs Charter Arms

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Patriotme, Apr 12, 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Patriotme

    Patriotme Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2009
    Messages:
    584
    I realize that neither brand is exactly considered top of the line but some people can barely scrape together enough money to buy a gun.
    If you only had $300 to spend on a 2" .38spl which brand would you prefer and why?
    I know that there are other choices out there and used guns can run $300 or less but this is about these two specific choices of snub nosed .38's.
     
  2. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    7,885
    I can't say anything about either, but can recommend a Rossi 88 for a budget snub. I had one years ago and found it to be a pretty good carry gun.
     
  3. Deus Machina

    Deus Machina Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2007
    Messages:
    2,223
    Location:
    Brandon, Florida
    I'd look for a used S&W Model 10 first.

    That said, I've been quite happy with my 2.5" Taurus M85 UL, and would gladly buy another. I'm a little leery about running the harshest of .38 +P through it, but believe the old thought that 158gr SWJHP will do the job if I can.

    I''ve also heard high praise of Charter Arms' recent revolvers for the price range, but have no firsthand firing experience. A quick look at a couple left me with a good opinion of their fit and finish, but they're definitely not Ruger.
     
  4. Onward Allusion

    Onward Allusion Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2009
    Messages:
    3,388
    Location:
    IN between
    The Taurus revolvers are ok guns. Triggers & action nothing to write home about but completely reliable if you use non +P rounds. Yes, I do know that they are +P rated, but I'm not willing to risk my life on a Taurus .38 special that has been fed a steady diet of +P rounds. Heck, I wouldn't risk my life on any revolver that has been fed a steady diet of +P 38 spl rounds unless it was a 357 Magnum.

    If you go with Charter Arms, go with old stuff or brand new manufacturing. Stay away from the late 80's all the way to the last few years.
     
  5. mr_goodbomb

    mr_goodbomb member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    Messages:
    177
    Taurus has a lifetime warranty, correct?
     
  6. 03Shadowbob

    03Shadowbob Member

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Messages:
    1,240
    Location:
    West Palm Beach
    My Taurus Model 85 SS (made back in 1989 or so) is one my my most solid guns and the trigger is great in double action and will surprise you in single action. Accurate also. I'd go with a similar Taurus 85. You couldn't pay me to have a newer model Taurus anything. I've sent back 3 different models before I got smart.
     
  7. Deus Machina

    Deus Machina Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2007
    Messages:
    2,223
    Location:
    Brandon, Florida
    In writing, but internet reports are that they don't make it easy.
     
  8. Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2006
    Messages:
    1,965
    Location:
    People's Republic of Maryland
    I bought a 7-shot Taurus .357 with a short barrel, simply because I thought it was odd, and fun, not for any serious application other than targets. It shoots very well, and I would get another without a problem. I have seen a Charter arms in 5-shot with a 3" barrel (iirc), and adjustable sights that I fing curious as well. It looked to me to be better than many of the past CA's that I had handled. As I haven't shot a CA in a very long time..., I'd have to say Taurus for now.

    LD
     
  9. Leathermarshmallow

    Leathermarshmallow Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2010
    Messages:
    107
    Location:
    West Virginia
    I don't have the .38, but I have a charter .44 special that I really like. It is of recent manufacture and is a trustworthy gun.
     
  10. MMCSRET

    MMCSRET Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2008
    Messages:
    2,971
    Location:
    North Central Montana, across the Wide Missouri
    I have Taurus and CA revolvers, they have been reliable and trouble free for me over almost 30 years.
     
  11. dallascj

    dallascj Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2010
    Messages:
    119
    Location:
    Dallas (Richardson) Texas
    I have both and have had no issues with them. I have a CA .44 Special and about 15 Taurus revolvers. The Taurus Model 85 is their biggest seller.
     
  12. oldfool

    oldfool Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Messages:
    2,026
    Location:
    Thomasville, Georgia
    problem with Charter is what post #4 said, the company has so many reincarnations over time, hard to tell what to think about 'em

    Taurus QC is all over the map also, but their model 85, as others have noted, gets consistently good marks. I liked a couple of 'em that I shot, although I do not own one. If I was in the market for another snubbie 38, the 85 would be high on my short list, and I would not worry about shooting 38+P in them. Like my k-frame 357s, they would see a whole lot of 'cheap' 38 fodder on range day, and far fewer 38+P JHPs. Factory 38+P is just not all that hot a load. I have on occasion shot up a whole box of 38+p at the range without realizing it was +P (vs 38 sp) until after the box was empty.

    (and that opinion of the Taurus 85 snubbie comes from a S&W model 60 and Ruger SP101 fan)
     
  13. jkulysses

    jkulysses Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Messages:
    211
    Location:
    Oregon
    If I had to choose between those two brands I would pick Charter Arms any day of the week. I swore Taurus off for life because of poor QC, customer service and turn around time for warranty repairs. My dad picked up a little Charter Arms .22mag Pathfinder a couple months back and it's been a great little revolver so far but thats my only experience with Charter Arms. I personally would find some stuff I got laying around to sell or find a little side project to make an extra hundred or $150 bucks and get a Ruger speaking of which i got a .357 LCR coming from Davidson's should be here on Thursday!!
     
  14. oldfool

    oldfool Member

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Messages:
    2,026
    Location:
    Thomasville, Georgia
    crappy Taurus QC in general has nothing to do with specific model hands on experience
    OP is not a brand war, it requests feedback on specific model and/or model/vintage

    get your dad to post up on THIS thread
    http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=586892
    some us seeking specific feedback on Charter Pathfinder rimfire
    (me in particular re: the 22 mag, how good was fit and finish, how good is the DA trigger, and can you compare that to some other small frame DA trigger ???)
     
  15. weregunner

    weregunner Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,561
    If you want the story on the Taurus snub revolvers please pick a model/s and I can find the info for you.

    I own a number of Taurus snub revolvers and find they are durable,reliable, and a bargain.

    First off I own a 85CH in .38 Special that is +25 years old and not +P qualified.

    Buffalo Bore and Federal Nyclads help out there with excellent standard pressure rounds.

    Buffale Bore makes a 158gr. LSWCHP that has the velocity of the +P version without the recoil of the +P.

    Federal makes the 125 gr. LSWCHP Nyclad that makes a good practice and decent protection round.

    My Taurus 856 magnesium framed Lyte model gets those as well. The 856 in the magnesium model or the stainless regular frame holds 6 shot instead of 5 and on a model 85 frame. I own both stainless models, but one is the magnesium model.

    Next up is the 327 in .327 Federal magnum. Not only is this a 6 shot model, but .32 H&R magnum rounds and .32 S&W Long rounds can be shot through it.

    This makes for versatility and a gun that new shooters can be introduced to.

    Tailor the ammo to the mission.

    Then comes the Rossi 462 in .357 magnum. This is a six shot gun, but the Rossi 351/352 family are 5 rounders and in .38 Special.

    Rossi is owned by Taurus now.

    There are also the Taurus 650/651/850/851 family to consider as well. Add to that all the Taurus 85 models to look at.

    Want a 7 shot snub revolver? The 617 and the 817UL have it.

    The few Charter Arms revolvers that I have been able to handle or shoot briefly seemed to be good solid pieces.

    What ever fits you and your needs is the way to go.

    If you use this you cannot go wrong.
    http://www.taurusarmed.net/forums/index.php?topic=15969.0

    Whether it is a Taurus or a Charter, should you choose to go those ways, or some other revolver, we should celebrate your pick.

    Handle as many different models as you can. That way you can see first hand what's what.
     
  16. MikeNice

    MikeNice Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    1,001
    Location:
    North Carolina
    I have been running a Taurus 85b3. No issues with over three hundred rounds of +p ammo since I aquired it. I have no idea how many rounds it fired in its previous life. All I know is that it performs well and I am confident with it.
     
  17. joed

    joed Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2009
    Messages:
    2,181
    Location:
    Ohio
    I've owned a Charter Bulldog bought new in 2004. I wouldn't own another Charter Arms product and feel that anyone associated with Charter should be put to death.

    I replaced the Charter with a Taurus, easily 3 times the gun of a Charter.
     
  18. bikerdoc

    bikerdoc Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2008
    Messages:
    17,190
    Location:
    Southern Virginia
    Yawn, another Taurus thread.

    I own both. A 70's CA , and A Taurus 605 (357 3inch) both are good guns. Both get carried. Not as much as my Rugers, but the are dedendable. If you are asking me to pick one - Taurus.
     
  19. hardluk1

    hardluk1 member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2009
    Messages:
    4,405
    Location:
    nc mountains
    I have a 1980's taurus 85SS that has one of lightest and smoothest handgun triggers I have had in my hand. I carried that for 20+ years. Great shooter . I also own a new charter arms ultra lite and can say it to shoots well. Not as good a trigger but with wolf springs it is now real nice and it does slick up with rounds fored. At 13oz it can be a hand full under recoil with +p loads. Just besure a charter arms say's just that on the frame. Not charter or charter 2000. I also use a old taurus 22 for practice .
     
  20. Jim NE

    Jim NE Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    Messages:
    1,555
    I owned two Charter Arms revolvers about 25 years ago, both purchased brand new. Hopefully, Charter Arms has improved since then. The first was a .38 snubnose which looked fine and was surprisingly accurate, but the cylinder wouldn't open after the gun had been fired, and the ejector could barely push the spent brass out of the chambers, they were in there so tight.

    Still, the gun was accurate, so I bought another one, a larger .357 model. I was hoping that, being larger and sturdier, it wouldn't have the same problem, but lo and behold it did. I also had one of those Explorer survival .22 pistols (bought used), and it didn't work that great, either.

    Too bad. I really wanted them to be good guns, and I gave C.A. several opportunities to prove this. They didn't. I guess it's possible they've improved since then.

    Never had a Taurus, but I've had good luck with the one Rossi I've owned.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2011
  21. 32 Magnum

    32 Magnum Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Messages:
    445
    Location:
    Lehigh Valley - Eastern PA
    Following is the research info. that I've been able to acquire on the Charter Arms firearms.

    The very first Charter Arms Corporation production began in 1964 in BRIDGEPORT CONN - earliest pieces - mostly Undercover model will have either NO address on the right side of the barrel or will have BRIDGEPORT.
    Around 1974, address was changed to STRATFORD CONN - all pieces made after mid 1974 will be marked with that address on the right side of the barrel and all will have CHARTER ARMS CORP. as the first line. Around 1991, Charter Arms Corp. ceased operations. This was the end of the FIRST GENERATION.
    Around early 1992, the company was re-organized under new leadership and became known as Charter Arms Company - CHARCO, and was located in ANSONIA CONN. All second generation pieces will be marked on the right side of the barrel with that name and address in two lines. This is the SECOND generation and apparently the period which caused the most damage to the Charter name and reputation.
    In 2000, the company was again reorganized as CHARTER 2000 and relocated to SHELTON CONN. All pieces made during this THIRD generation will be marked with the SHELTON address. Early production of this generation seems to have been spotty and reputation still lagged. About a year and a half ago, the company re-reorganized under the direction of MKS Marketing and seems now to be if not flourishing at least it is progressing in quality and market share.
    From the limited data set that I have been able to assemble so far the following serialization seems to be valid: (NOTE: model name and caliber will be stamped on left side of barrel on all pieces)
    FIRST GENERATION
    0001 - <13000 Bridgeport 1964 - ? CHARTER ARMS CORP. right side of barrel marking only
    ~13000 - <315,000 ? - ~1965 CHARTER ARMS CORP. over BRIDGEPORT CONN .marking
    ~316,000 - <1,088,000 - ~1974 to 1991 - CHARTER ARMS CORP. over STRATFORD CONN. marking

    SECOND GENERATION
    >1,090,000 - ??? 1992 - 2000? CHARCO over ANSONIA CONN- marking

    THIRD GENERATION
    000001 - to date 2000 - 2011 CHARTER ARMS 2000 over SHELTON CONN marking.

    This is the updated serial number info that I have - based upon around 800 data points
    The earliest 1st Gen - ~0 to ~19,000 have NO barrel ADDRESS and s/n is on lower right corner on right side of frame. CA company founded in 1964, first production pieces of the Undercover model produced in 1965
    Bridgeport CONN address - ~19000 to ~315,000 1967 - 1969
    Stratford CONN address - ~316000 to ~1,090,000 1970 - ~1991
    All marked as Charter Arms Corporation

    2nd Generation - CHARCO, Ansonia Conn adress - 1,090,000 to ??? ~1991 - 1999

    3rd Generation - CHARTER 2000 - Shelton Conn - 0 to where ever they are today.

    From the 26 pieces in my collection (all 1st Gen) and from dozens more that I've had the opportunity to observed and fondle, I'd say that around s/n 600,000 the finish was made a lot finer - although the integrals (lock work, action) was at least as good as the earlier ones. I have or have read magazine articles that cover pretty much of the production life of the 1st Generation, and during that period (around late 1980, early 1981) it seems that CA attempted to capture more of the market by doing so, also in April of 1981, they introduced Stainless Steel revolvers into the mix, for the first time. Some of the articles lamented that the earlier pieces, although rough finish, were rather inexpensive (~60-65% of S&W) and when CA began their "modernization" process, the finishes got better but the prices increased to about 85 to 90% of the S&W line for comparable models.
    During the 2nd Generation, the CHARCO (Charter Arms COMPANY), under new management and reorganized, the quality was definitely more spotty and haphazard. I've seen CHARCO produced guns with Stratford marked barrels, obviously using up old stock.
    The earliest CHARTER 2000 pieces I had the opportunity to handle (some fairly early 4 digits s/ns - were uniformly, poorly fitted and finished and had some horrendous and gritty actions. That seems to have been rectified under MKS's (circa 2008) new leadership and the most recent pieces I've handled - s/n's in the high 100,000 range have been "decent" but not as fine in finish and action as the mid years of the 1st Generation. This is simply my studied opinion based upon experience.
     
  22. BrocLuno

    BrocLuno Member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2010
    Messages:
    2,088
    Location:
    Kalif Kollective
    I have a Charter Arms Undercoverette on my short list. I like .32 Mag and the ability to shoot .32 Long and .32 S&W, all in the same arm. Snubbies can be tough to control. With these options there are a lot pf practice and field capabilities in a compact frame :)
     
  23. Onward Allusion

    Onward Allusion Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2009
    Messages:
    3,388
    Location:
    IN between
    OMG! :eek:
     
  24. joed

    joed Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2009
    Messages:
    2,181
    Location:
    Ohio
     
  25. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2005
    Messages:
    25,276
    Location:
    The end of the road between Sodom and Gomorrah Tex
    I have owned both. Have divested myself of Charter Arms, but have a pair of Taurus 66s (3" and 4") and a M85SSUL that will stay in my possession. In fact, the 4" 66 replaces a Ruger Security Six and a Smith M19. It's a smidge more accurate than the Smith and shoots rings around the Ruger. The triggers are quite good on the 4" 66 and the 85 is awesome, but the older 3" 66 with hammer block is a little rough compared to my Smith and the other 66. Ain't bad, just not as slick in a side by side comparison. I don't even wanna think about Charter, though, not anywhere in the same league IMHO. Someone mentioned Rossi. All mine were Interarms guns, but all were servicable weapons and quite accurate enough. Academy has 'em dirt cheap if you're looking for a bargan snubby. I really do prefer my Taurus 85 to anything I've owned, though. Damned nice revolver.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page