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What's your idea of the ultimate .357?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by labnoti, Aug 18, 2018.

  1. labnoti

    labnoti Member

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    The .357 is pretty versatile, but I'm not going to ask what's the ultimate hunting .357 or the ultimate pocket .357. I want to hear what gun you think makes the most of what the .357 is best at.

    I carry a .357 ankle gun, but I don't think it's the ultimate culmination of the .357. It has a lot of trade-offs or compromises. So what about a big .357 like the seminal Registered Magnums or the Model 27? No. That N frame's for .44's. It was a kludge, made to work for hot .38-44's and .357's but it doesn't quite fit, does it? Well, maybe it fits eight, but there's still a big gap.

    Maybe the Model 19? Some people see the glass half-full, other's half-empty. It seems most people think the Model 19 overflowed just a bit with the .357. For those who saw the N frame glass as too big, and the K frame too small, maybe the L frame was just the right size? Is the ultimate .357 an L-frame? If so, which one?

    Maybe it wasn't even Smith & Wesson that made the ultimate .357. The early Blackhawks were Ruger's first centerfire revolver and they chambered it in .357. Some people think they nailed it. Is an early Flattop the ultimate .357?

    Well, when the .44 Magnum came out, it seems it eclipsed the .357 for those big-frame revolvers in every way. The Blackhawk was super-sized and mostly forgot the .357. The Model 29 was the N frame people wanted, not the Model 27 which was by then like a concession prize. Silhouette shooters and handgun hunters focused on the .44 and the string of big-bore cartridges that followed. Guns like the Freedom Arms Model 83 were built for those, but they did make a fine .357 in later years. Is the ultimate .357 a FA Model 97?

    Maybe the .357's ultimate expression isn't in handgun hunting where even Elmer Keith abandoned it. Maybe it is in the little pocket revolvers like the first stainless steel revolver, the Model 60, or an SP101. Some people think the Kimber is better than all those, but it would be hard to believe that it took Kimber to make the ultimate .357.

    More than one gun-writer has written before their own opinion that the Colt Python is the answer, even the greatest production revolver ever made in any caliber. Others say they wear fast, they're fragile, they lose timing, and the trigger reset's too slow. It's hard to pick nits with a jewel like the Python, but I don't think anyone would say they're a good value these days.

    Maybe it's not a revolver. Maybe the ultimate expression of .357 is a Desert Eagle or a Coonan. Probably not.

    What do you think?
     
  2. robhof

    robhof Member

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    DSCN0765.JPG The Dan Wesson 357 MAX., with barrel choices from 4" to 12" and will shoot 357 Mag., my idea of the most versatile 357 out there, sadly no longer made, but many still in use and still taking awards in matches.
     
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  3. NIGHTLORD40K

    NIGHTLORD40K Member

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    IMG_20180308_230003.jpg
    The L-frame is the best all round .357 for me. Strong, but no extra bulk like a .357 N-Frame or Redhawk. Fixed the K-frame forcing cone issue in a slightly bigger package. Better factory trigger than the Rugers.

    A 681 was my first handgun ever, and I miss it everyday, but it was the Great Recession and the kids had to eat.

    That said, I now have .357s in all different shapes, sizes, and flavors- but they will pry my 686-0 from my cold dead........well you know the rest.:)
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2018
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  4. edwardware

    edwardware Member

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    Definitely the Model 19, preferably pinned and recessed.
     
  5. AZAndy
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    AZAndy Contributing Member

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    This one is my favorite revolver to shoot. 19-3, 6".

    19-3sm.jpg
     
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  6. jar

    jar Member

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    Maybe the Dan Wesson kits.

    standard.jpg
     
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  7. Hondo 60
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    Hondo 60 Member

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    My fav 357 is my GP100.
    3" blue, fixed sights.
    I changed the grips to Altamont "snakeskin" rubber & inserts
    I liked grips that are checked or have a design.
    they're easier to hang on to, whether you're shooting mouse farts or OH MY GOSH type rounds

    https://www.altamontco.com/pistol-grips/ruger/gp100/

    gp100.jpg
     
  8. paulsj

    paulsj Member

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    A Ruger Security Six or Service Six with 4" barrel. I would take the one with adjustable rear sight.
     
  9. milemaker13

    milemaker13 Member

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    Only handguns? How about the lever action carbines?
     
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  10. ray15

    ray15 Member

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    Ultimate? I change my mind about that sort of thing. I'll settle for this for now. GP2.jpg
     
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  11. The Evangelist Cowboy

    The Evangelist Cowboy Member

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    The ultimate .357 mag is a .45 colt...

    But seriously I think that a 3 inch barreled gun would be about ideal, to me the best bet has been the 586 L Comp. No other .357 comes close from the factory to what this gun does for me. IMG_20180423_114759.jpg
     
  12. John_R

    John_R Member

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    I’m a huge S&W fanboy, but I took my 3” GP100 out the other day and it was such a delight to shoot, and so easy to be accurate with, that I felt like if I only owned one handgun, that could be the one.

    Fixed sights, Wolff lightened trigger spring, stainless, Pachmayr Diamond Pro grips.
     
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  13. RPZ

    RPZ Member

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    For me, it's the 65 3" Ladysmith. The ultimate .357. Bedside or carry. Wouldn't shoot it alot - don't need to. It's the "always there" .357. Relatively compact, capable and handles perfectly.
     
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  14. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    20180429_090308.jpg my colt tuned python is the finest, most accurate revolver i have ever fired.
    2013-08-15_19-24-36_380.jpg
    The Sp101 is built like an anvil and will handle the hottest .357 ammo that i want to shoot. 20160824_183349.jpg this quick little marlin .357 carbine is easy to like. Accurate, and potent.
    The ultimate .357mag?
    GP 100 fixed sights, heavy barrel 3".(i want one)
     
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  15. jar

    jar Member

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    Smith & Wesson Highway Patrolman:

    medium800.jpg
     
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  16. JONWILL

    JONWILL Member

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    IMHO. For the best performance you really need to get at least a 4" barrel, preferably a 6" to get the most velocity out of a given round.

    At a minimum I like the Smith K frame or the Ruger Security Six size guns.
     
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  17. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

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    I am ready to trade another. 357 for one just like yours. Tell us all about it!. I am three handguns away from being all ruger!
     
  18. rpenmanparker

    rpenmanparker Member

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    That is what I was going to say.
     
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  19. .308 Norma

    .308 Norma Member

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    I guess it kind of depends on a person's definition of "ultimate." If "ultimate" refers to most expensive, my FA Model 97 is my "ultimate" .357, because it was certainly the most expensive .357 I've ever bought.:eek:
    Kidding aside, I love my FA Model 97. It's so smooth and tight, and I shoot it as well or better than any handgun I've ever owned.
    However, for an all-around, all-purpose (at least every purpose I'd use a .357 for) I'd have to go with my old 4" Security Six. And if it had a 6" barrel, I'd probably like it even more. So I guess my definition of an "ultimate .357" would have to be a Ruger Security Six with a 6" barrel.:)
     
  20. 357 Terms

    357 Terms Member

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    20180818_202706-1.jpg

    I have 9, my 3in GP100 with compact grips and a bobbed hammer is near the top.
    But, these 8 shot 627's are the ultimate.
     
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  21. mcb

    mcb Member

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    I can't remember the last time I reached into the gun cabinet for a revolver and grabbed a 357 Magnum. I realize this is probably not a popular opinion but for me the ultimate 357 Mag is not a 357 Mag.
     
  22. Sistema1927

    Sistema1927 Member

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    I have owned many .357's over the years. Each of them has been fantastic. However, the one that I find meets my needs best, right now, is the 3" Kimber K6S. I used to think that the 3" S&W Model 13 or 65 RB was the ultimate .357, and used to own a 13. I foolishly sold it, but have found that the Kimber is "all that and a bag of chips".
     
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  23. ArchAngelCD

    ArchAngelCD Member

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    IMO there are many outstanding .357 Magnum platforms out there, one better than the other.

    They run from the S&W M60 to the Ruger GP100 and the S&W M686 all the way to leverguns.

    While I feel the pinnacle platform was the Registered Magnum a more practice revolver would be the M28 as a shooter. After those I would go with the Ruger Blackhawk.

    As a side note, don't forget the Desert Eagle. ..
     
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  24. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    Smith 27 or 28.
     
  25. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    For me, the ultimate 357 Magnum is an S&W L-frame. It has the K-frame grip frame without the reliability issues of the Model 19.

    But, I'd be happy with and S&W N-frame or a Ruger GP100.

    Single action revolvers and I just do not get along. It is wonderful that some folks shoot them well.
     
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