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Which is a better 357 revolver: Python v SW 686 v Ruger GP100?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by el Godfather, Feb 5, 2013.

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Which is a better 357 magnum revolver?

This poll will close on Jan 14, 2021 at 2:05 AM.
  1. Colt Python

    87 vote(s)
    23.5%
  2. SW 686

    141 vote(s)
    38.1%
  3. Ruger GP100

    90 vote(s)
    24.3%
  4. Tough call. They are at par with each other.

    52 vote(s)
    14.1%
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  1. el Godfather

    el Godfather Member

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    Dear THR:
    Since a similar thread is going on 44 magnum, I would like hear your opinions and experiences with 357s as well. Particularly, with Colt Python, SW 686 and Ruger GP100. Which is better in your opinion and why?

    Kindly share pictures if you can.

    Thank you.
     
  2. BrainOnSigs

    BrainOnSigs Member

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    Define "better".
    I can see comparing and contrasting a S&W 686 and a Ruger GP100.....but a Colt Python is a whole different level of refinement.

    [​IMG]
    This pic belongs to Dr Ken Lunde
     
  3. 357Shooter

    357Shooter Member

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    686 and that on the Python☝
     
  4. WoodchuckAssassin

    WoodchuckAssassin Member

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    In many ways, they serve very different purposes. While I believe that they will all shoot flawlessly for a lifetime, not many poeple will carry - much less, shoot - their Colt Pythons. I don't think I've ever seen someone with a GP100 as a safe queen, so as far as a utilitarian weapon goes, the Python is somewhat excluded from this group.

    I've never owned a GP100 or a Python, but I do own a 686 no-dash. Would I trade it for either of the other two? No. It shoots strait, can handle the hot stuff without worry, and has a light, crisp trigger to die for. The trigger of the 686 is much nicer than the GP100, and while I've never pulled the trigger of a Python, I am going to assume that it is like almost all other Colt DA's - Crisp as hell, but just a little stiffer than the S&W.
     
  5. JRWhit

    JRWhit Member

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    I've got to give it to Ruger if we are talking about utility and use. The GP100 would be the work horse of the group. Maybe not the best,but the most usable.
    I would be far more willing to use a gp100 on a hunt. The S&W wouldn't be a safe queen but would primarily be only used at the range. The python would only be pulled out on the rare occasion to make my friends drool,as it is the least replaceable of the bunch.I'm not sure the Python can be in the same group as it has become more of a rarely acquired relic, than a usable tool for hunting or paper punching. Case in point, Just watched one sell,6" stainless, for $1950.00.
    The Smith is more usable but to some would still be seen as something that they wouldn't take to the field,depending on age and condition. The Ruger while selling at the lowest retail, is my pick for best with all things considered. Price is not so high to limit willingness to use, and quality is high enough that with proper care, it will most likely outlast the owner, and take pretty much anything you can load in it and spit it out other end with accuracy.
     
  6. CajunBass

    CajunBass Member

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    I've never owned either a 686, or a GP 100. They've neither one interested me at all.

    But I have owned both Model 19/66/13/65, and Model 27/28 Smith & Wessons, and Ruger Security/Speed-Six revolvers, so I have some knowledge of what both companies turn out. I also currently own a Colt Python.
    I wouldn't say any of them are "better" than the other. They're all about equal, in performance, just different in execution. If one shoots better than the other, I can't tell it. So I just say I like all three.

    If I had to pick one over the other, I'd most likely pick a Smith & Wesson, but I've got a lot more experience with them.
     
  7. hardluk1

    hardluk1 member

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    If it going to used hard and loaded hot only the ruger deals with that way better than the colt or s&w. If you see a nice looking dan wesson made in monson mass. or palmer buy it.
     
  8. JRWhit

    JRWhit Member

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    As proven by the pic, if we are only talking looks,.........Well there it is.
     
  9. madcratebuilder

    madcratebuilder Member

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    Not on your list but I would choose a S&W M27. Look at the DW M15-2's, it would be the most accurate of all of them.
     
  10. RaceM

    RaceM Member

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    Pythons are pretty, Smiths are smooth, and Rugers are rugged. Pick one.
     
  11. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Member

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    Better for what???

    For looking at?

    For daydreaming about?

    For hunting?

    For accuracy?

    For action shooting?

    For a tackle box?

    For concealed carry?

    For duty use?

    For mounting an optic?

    For durability?

    As a basis for custom work?

    For resale value?

    Best bang for the buck?

    Etc., etc., etc..

    The answers to all those questions determine the answer but only YOU can provide the answer.
     
  12. el Godfather

    el Godfather Member

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    Whats you answer for each of your question? Lets see which shows up more on your list.
     
  13. firesky101

    firesky101 Member

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    Tell you what. You send me one of each, and I will give you an answer:D
     
  14. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Member

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    My answers? I'm going to be strongly swayed towards an older S&W for virtually all DA purposes.

    I think the Python is a handsome sixgun but I've never seen a 586 I didn't like. Or a model 19 for that matter. Add to that model 27's and .38/44's.

    Same for daydreaming.

    For a dedicated hunting sixgun a later model S&W will be more adept because they're drilled and tapped for scope mounts. Any of them will do for iron sight hunting but again, my preference would be S&W.

    For accuracy, the Python wins hands down.

    For action shooting, the S&W would be first pick.

    For throwing in the truck or tackle box to be forgotten about, a stainless Ruger wins easily.

    For concealed carry, any would do with a shorter barrel. S&W's and Rugers are easier to come by in short lengths. Either S&W or Ruger will do fine.

    For duty use, probably S&W.

    S&W is the only one of the three that readily accepts optics.

    Ruger probably has an edge in durability but I think a lot of the rhetoric about Rugers being "built like a tank" and indestructible are overblown.

    The Ruger is really the best platform for custom work. It is the only one that can be converted to a five-shot big bore .41Mag or .44Spl. While the L-frame can be rechambered to .41Spl or 10mm.

    This is one instance where Colt's resale value is definitely ahead. Unlike SAA's, Pythons are no longer made and only going up. Of course, this assumes that you don't pay a collector premium today and expect to make a sizable profit in five years.

    The Ruger is probably the best value. They're still quite affordable. New S&W's are way too high for what is no longer a better gun. Older S&W's are only going up. Good luck finding a good deal on a Python.

    All that said, the 27 is probably my favorite double action .357. Followed closely by the 586, which for me would need new sights. I also love the model 19 but would load it more moderately. I have to say that a blued GP cut back to 5" (hate Ruger's angled underlug), slicked up action, fitted with custom sights, a bright blued finish and fitted with Herrett's Roper stocks would be strongly in the running but that's a lot to invest to get the same thing you get with a box stock 586.

    My favorite .357 of all would be the Ruger Old Model flat-top Blackhawk in the 4 5/8" length.
    [​IMG]
     
  15. USAF_Vet

    USAF_Vet Member

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    I think the Python is the best of the three, followed by the S & W, and the Ruger in a close 3rd.

    For any social work, I would not choose the Python, only because they aren't made anymore, and if I owned one I wouldn't want to lose it.
    A long barrel 686 is on my wish list.
     
  16. PabloJ

    PabloJ Member

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    The choice is between S&W and Ruger. I would pick S&W because I could repair it if something would ever break. The Colt would be my last pick because it is no longer made and spare parts may not be available to fix it if something breaks.
     
  17. browneu

    browneu Member

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    I for one like the cylinder release on the Ruger better than the python or smith.

    Sent from my SGH-T999 using Tapatalk 2
     
  18. lobo9er

    lobo9er Member

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    yep, I dig Rugers release button too.
     
  19. CraigC
    • Contributing Member

    CraigC Member

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    Have to agree about Ruger's cylinder release.
     
  20. Hammerdown77

    Hammerdown77 Member

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    Yep on the Ruger cylinder release. Also something to consider if you're a lefty (which I'm not, but my buddy is, and he prefers it for that reason).
     
  21. rondog

    rondog Member

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    Put all three on a table, tell me I can have one for free, and guess which one I'll go dancing away with cackling with glee?
     
  22. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Member

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    I prefer the Colt in almost every possible use unless I am going to abuse the revolver. In that case, I would get a GP-100.

    Have always wanted a 5" 686 however.
     
  23. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Member

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    Hard to beat that. Love the single actions. Purty grips too.
     
  24. HexHead

    HexHead Member

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    I would expect the 686 to be ahead in the poll, if for no other reason than so many more people have experience with them than with Pythons.
     
  25. jc650

    jc650 Member

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    Ill go with the Ruger cause I just bought a 6" stainless today!!!!!!! On that note I'd also like a 686 and a Python one day!!!!
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
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