Five Reasons to Own Sixguns

Revolvers have been declining in market share for three decades, a decline which really only got going 30 years after the last major military revolver user (the UK), crawled into the 20th Century. (Actually the last major military revolver user was probably the US, which issued revolvers to aviators, and to military police men and women who had difficulty with the 1911A1, up until the adoption of the Beretta M9 — but it was always a secondary weapon). They’re now rare as police firearms, and much less common than they once were as defensive firearms.

As revolvers’ presence in the police and civilian market has declined, their presence in crime has also declined. This is logical, as most criminals arm themselves with weapons diverted from lawful uses, generally by theft or straw purchase with many cut-outs and intermediaries. This increased use of automatic pistols in crime has actually been a boon for homicide and assault investigators, as toolmark evidence matching firearms to cases (cartridge type) or cases (cartridge) from one crime scene to another, has helped close more than a few cases (investigative type). Sumdood doesn’t police his brass when he rips his dope dealer, oddly enough; and he can’t police his brass when he does a drive-by, holding his Hi-Point sideways out the window.

Logisticians might dream of caseless ammo, but homicide cops don’t.

Revolvers’ mindshare has declined. They are seldom seen in TV or movies, except in period pieces or to mark a character as kind of old-fashioned (Rick in The Walking Dead with his long-discontinued Python).

Is the declining mindshare of revolvers a cause or an effect of declining market share? Both may be the right answer; market and mind share may be wrapped in a vicious circle, or spiral.

But there are a number of reasons for the classic, 1890s-style double-action revolver’s remaining children to still be used. Consider these five reasons to shoot sixguns:

  1. They are simple and, if quality products in good condition, reliable.
  2. They are indifferent to variations in ammunition.
  3. Misfire drill? Just fire again.
  4. Time spent loading can enforce a certain pace on a shooting session, improving performance.
  5. They can be enjoyable and educational to shoot; there’s a great variety of them.

Simple and Reliable

While a revolver’s mechanism seems fiendishly complex to those not mechanically inclined, it’s a simple mechanical mechanism. Compared to a typewriter or sewing machine there’s a lot less to go on — and compared to an automatic pistol, the same is true. Some of them are better than others, especially on durability. (An old, worn Smith is less likely to have lost time or need a gunsmith than a Colt of similar vintage. Or an NIB Taurus). It’s also intuitive and easy to learn. There’s a t-shirt with a Colt SAA on it: “the original point-and-click interface.” Steve Jobs (who lifted it all from Xerox PARC anyway), eat your heart out.

Indifferent to Ammo Variations

What ammo works with your carry gun? Sure, with modern autos the days of hollow-points not feeding are mostly over, but everyone has experience with ammo their gun does not like. Doesn’t happen with a sixgun. If the gun’s right, anything that chambers goes bang. Bang-on-demand is good.

What Misfire Drill?

As we mentioned, with a revolver you just point and click. If you do get a point and click and not point and bang, your follow-up shot is a trigger pull away (a hammer cock and trigger pull, if you’re really OG and toting an SAA or something like that). No auto pistol is that quickly back in the fight (or, for hunters, on the game).

Enforces Pace

OK, here we’re making a virtue of necessity. But anyone who spends any time on ranges has seen the shooter with more ammo than sense, blowing through 200 rounds without making a great deal of effort to hit anything. Hey, it’s a free country, and if that’s how they want to make fun let ’em knock themselves out, but… there’s a lot to be said for taking that same amount of time and firing 50 rounds with care. The mechanical, muscle-memory drill of dumping cases and loading rounds can be a great time for considering what went wrong with your last six shots, and what you can do better with the next six.

After all, only the hits count, and even 3 out of 6 into the target at 7 meters is better than the NYPD does out of a 17-round Glock mag.

Enjoyable Variety

The different revolver mechanisms are a blast. Everybody who has never shot a Single-Action Army before gets a thrill out of it, the first time. Ejecting the cases and loading them is fun, and they you can tell the guy or gal, “And… they were expected to do this on a horse.” Instant connection to distant times and places. Likewise, tip-up revolves.

A favorite uncle had a Harrington and Richardson 9-shot .22; it looked like a baby Webley, and was great fun to pop it open and fountain .22 brass around.

Colt 1917

And then, there are the revolvers of 1,000 detective shows, and plenty of revolvers with interesting military history. (Colt and Smith M1917s are nice, beefy guns with a great back story and some weird engineering to let them shoot rimless .45 ACP). Early police double-action .32 pistols are fun and easy to shoot, built like jewels, and dirt cheap right now. There’s always some bragging rights in a Smith & Wesson Model 29. (Or a .500 if you’re diffident about carrying Dirty Harry’s gun, or concerned about the low power of the .44 Mag).

Everybody ought to have a revolver.

But then, the question becomes, which revolver?

60 thoughts on “Five Reasons to Own Sixguns

  1. joshua

    Reason 6? Ammunition power variation! A 357 can be loaded hot to hunt, mild for defense of loaded with 38 Specials for plinking. Same- same for all the 44s, 41s – even for the 327/32HR/32 Long minimalists.

    Reason 7? Accuracy. Barrel and sights remain in fixed alignment, sight radius often longer for the same barrel length and since you aren’t worried about slide velocity when handloading, you can focus on precision.

    Long live the Dan Wesson #15.

  2. Nynemillameetuh

    Reason #8

    No magazines are required as the ammunition reserve is integral to the firearm. Speedloaders, speedstrips, and other devices are optional.

    Reason #9

    Vent ribs! Sure you can get them on a Smith 622, Wildey, and some other autos. They just look the best on a revolver. Well, on Korth or Colt. Vent ribs on the pot metal import revolvers give me a headache.

  3. Matt

    Everyone needs a four inch Smith Model 10. Used to be I got them for under $200, now they’re rarer at $300, but there’s plenty available. No lock, whatever grips you want, heavy enough to shoot easily all day.

    1. Buckaroo

      Yes. These are wonderful revolvers. Any decent-sized gun store that does a robust trade in used weapons will probably have at least one Model 10 in the case. $300 or even $350 is a very fair price to pay for one of these in excellent condition. A triumph of american craftsmanship.

    2. MD

      The S&W Model 10 is indeed nice. I prefer the very similar Model 15 with adjustable sights. Mine is an early version with a pinned barrel and deep, deep bluing. It is ridiculously accurate too. Now, if only I could get my hands on my old Model 66 – my first privately owned handgun – foolishly sold in my mid 20’s.

    1. DaveP.

      Prefer my Ruger GP100. Tough enough to handle a steady diet of full-pressure .357, and if you get tired of shooting it you can use it to hammer nails with. Though I wish I had had the brains to buy that Speed Six when I had the chance.

  4. Keith

    Reason #10. A quality revolver can be less expensive to own and fire than a similar quality pistol. I have two Rugers and a Italian made replica Remington 1858 New Model Army.

    Keep your powder dry, your revolver handy and your faith in God.

  5. Jordan

    Yes, the question of which revolver is quite important. For myself, about every 6 months or so i start googling pictures of old Smith & Wesson model 66’s and blued 586’s to lust after. There is just something about the lines and appearance of those two revolvers that appeal to me. The strange part, however, is that I know from past experience that if I were to give in and buy a 66 or 586 that it would get shot a time or two and then go in the closet, rarely to be used again. Then, at some point down the road, I’d see it in the closet and regret spending that much money on something that didn’t get used and I’d probably end up selling it, only to start the lusting process again in a year or two. The human mind is strange like that sometimes.

    To add to your list, revolvers can be very easy to teach a new shooter on. Fewer things to think about than with a semi.

  6. Larry Kaiser

    Speaking of revolvers, survivalblog has a link to an article in an English newspaper about a firearms amnesty in London. A “terrifying arsenal” consisting of 6 or 8 beaters was turned in. Including two percussion revolvers (one with no hammer or trigger) and a couple of others that looked pretty pinfirery. No ammo made since before WWII. The only interesting and useable firearm was what appeared to be an Artillery model Colt SA. Perhaps someone can look at the picture and decide if it is a real SA or just a replica.

    1. C Otto

      I saw that as well and I would have to say replica. It had that cheap toy like metal. Nothing about that said real firearm to me. And I almost bought that little single shot percussion this weekend at a gun show for 95 bucks. Made in Belgium in the 1850s or so. But yes, terrifying arsenal…There was a reason they were turned in the first time. None of them really worked anymore, if at all.

    2. JonMac

      The SAA was a Denix diecast replica. Illegal to purchase in the UK without a special exemption.

      1. Hognose Post author

        Wait, it was a toy? And that is tightly restricted?

        I’m glad Dr Watson and his revolver didn’t live to see this turn of events.

  7. CJ

    Ruger Redhawk in .45 Colt with the option of .45 ACP on moon clips for me, with a Winchester 94 to match. Having shot autos since the beginning, it is a bit of a learning curve to adjust to the revolver’s nuances. They are simply classy, however.

    1. anonymous

      I’ll see your Ruger Redhawk and switch for the convertible .45 ACP / .45LC Blackhawk instead. The shorter 4 5/8″ barrel is made for packing easy in the brush.

      1. CJ

        FWIW, mine is the newer 4.2″ Redhawk. I agree, it’s a fantastic size and still easy to shoot, unlike the aforementioned Super Redhawk Alaskan in .454. That thing should come with a T&E.

  8. QuietMan

    I was accused of lighting my house with lanterns instead of lamps when I suggested the ideal police sidearm was a round butt Model 65 loaded with +P LHP.

    Happy Highway Patrolman owner here.

  9. Bill T

    My wife and I carry revolvers for one main reason. They are near 100% reliable, no safety or manual of arms to learn or fumble with. Just make sure it is maintained in working order and load it with your choice of commercial ammo. When you pull the trigger it will fire 99.999% of the time.
    Of course you need to fire it, familiarize yourself with it, learn to fire it accurately, practice loading and unloading, and get one you are comfortable enough to carry it ALL THE TIME. It’s not worth anything at all if you are away from home and it is in your dresser drawer at home. I have a .22 Mag American arms 5 shot revolver i carry ALL the time. A .357 Mag Rossi 4″ I carry when away from home loaded with .357 Federal 225 JHP. My wife carries a .38SPL+P 2″ Stainless Rossi 5-shot whenever she is away from home.
    We practice at 3 to 7 meters with the revolvers. Anything outside this distance we have a 12 GA Shotgun and several rifles .30cal or more. works for us.

    1. Jordan

      Only the mouse guns are easier to carry in a pocket than a good, light weight j frame. I love my 442 and it goes almost everywhere with me.

  10. DSM

    “Everybody ought to have a revolver.”

    This should be justification enough to file with the household financial officer. I’ve been meaning to pick up a 357 wheel gun and a lever action in same.

  11. ToastieTheCoastie

    Sorta covered above, but you can teach someone how to safely load, unload, and handle a revolver very quickly. So for infrequent shooters, they make a lot of sense.

    I carry a Ruger .454 for bear up here, and I love it because I never feel undergunned.

  12. Docduracoat

    Others have mentioned the simpler manual of arms of a revolver
    When I get a woman asking me what home defense gun to keep at home, I often recommend a revolver
    Many women seem to have problems racking the slide of a semi-auto
    There are easier to rack semi’s available
    If they are not going to practice and become proficient with a semi then a revolver is a good choice to put in the nightstand for that bump in the night
    The main problem is that the ones I see are more expensive than semi autos

    1. John M.

      I have noted that many women are less interested in mechanical things than men are. (This can be easily demonstrated by asking a man what his first car was. His response will likely be something like a want ad for this long-junked auto: “1985 Toyota Corolla DX four door with a 1.5L fuel-injected engine and a five-speed.” If you ask a woman what her first car was, the answer will likely be something like: “blue.”)

      As a consequence, I find that men are willing and able to learn the various levers and controls of a semi-auto, as well as being more able to conceptually deal with the “hidden chamber” of the semi-auto.

      So I submit reason #11: Simpler manual of arms. Want to load it? Open it and load it. Want to check if it’s loaded? Open it and look. Want to unload it? Open it and turn it upside down, unfired cartridges will likely just fall right out. Want to fire it? Load it and pull the trigger. Wonderful!

      This should appeal to those who will learn to use it once or twice and then toss it in a drawer. Unfortunately, most gun mags and gun bloggers–present company excluded, of course–don’t think much about people who just want a firearm for a household tool and aren’t going to pay any more attention to it than they do to their fire extinguisher or the spare tire in their car.

      -John M.

    2. Hognose Post author

      Many women are reluctant to buy used guns, which is a shame, because a used Chief’s Special is a perfect gun for the purpose you describe, and less expensive than many current alternatives.

    3. Dyspeptic Gunsmith

      For older women living alone, I invariably recommend a revolver. Many older women (I’m talking women from 70 on up to 90+ years of age) cannot manage the slide on any semi-auto from 9mm on up.

      But a revolver? They’re perfectly capable of driving a revolver.

      1. RSR

        Bersa or Walthers IMO are much more suited…

        Loading the gun is just 1/2 the equation. Controlled fire is the other. Revolvers for folks w/ poor grip strength are a terrible call IMO.

  13. Ti

    Always wanted a model 29 growing up in the Dirty Harry era. I think they were model 10’s we were issued for our aircrew personal weapon while I was a heli crew chief in HI. Buy ammo at local shop and shoot “informally” while out on FTX. Was never sent to range to qual w the wheelgun.

  14. Brad

    Another revolver advantage is easily customized grips to fit the individual user’s hand. And the single action trigger pull on even a mediocre revolver is a delight compared to the vast majority of pistols.

    Aside from indulging nostalgia, I think revolvers today still fills some important niches in the defense-handgun ecosystem, niches at the small and the large ends of scale. Would you rather use a Ruger LCP or a Ruger LCR for self-defense? Would you rather use a S&W Model 69 or a .44 Desert Eagle for self-defense?

    1. John M.

      “Would you rather use a Ruger LCP or a Ruger LCR for self-defense?”

      Why choose? You could probably carry both for less than the weight of a Government Model.

      -John M.

    1. anonymous

      Yes – that one ! A CCI .44 Spcl. shotshell, followed by 4 solids makes for a good snake gun companion. Easy to index cylinder for appropriate load. Light and handy too ! I prefer the Gen. 1s myself.

      I notice not much love for the rimfire revolver, a shame – they are great back-ups.

    2. QuietMan

      I know a retired CIA guy who still carries three of them. He’s been known to use them, too. Given his training experiences there, he convinced Ruger to make titanium revolvers for issue. Then Glock showed up….

      I had one for about a year until my daughter saw it. Last time I saw it, it was on her hip, college rules be hanged.

  15. Gray

    Reason number one NOT to use revolvers:

    Age related decreptitude. A combination of recurring flexor tendonitis and mild arthritis has eliminated the ability to reliably and accurately manipulate double-action triggers. Both I and HH6 are both impacted by the same issues. The collection of wheels is now just that, a collection.

    (The NY style trigger spring on a Glock is the current solution.)

    1. Scott

      Yeah, or damage decreptitude. For me, a volley ball injury (yes, seriously) mangled my ring finger on my strong hand pretty badly. I can type with it, but not much else. Certainly not consistently resist recoil from the higher bore axis of a revolver in a consistent fashion suitable for anything approaching accuracy. Revolvers pivot around my middle finger’s grip, and my pinky finger isn’t up to consistently resisting much more than .22LR recoil.

  16. aczarnowski

    Ruger family here. Always envied my brothers 2″ stainless service six and the gorgeous ivories he found for it. I found a 4″ speed six a while back whose timing and trigger are fantastic. Grips? Yeah. Not so much. I’ve unfortunately determined that “custom” grip makers these days aren’t. Someday I’ll make a bunch of my own until a pair doesn’t suck.

    As mostly a pistol shooter holding onto a wheel gun takes reacquainting each time. Haven’t quite nailed down what to do with the offhand thumb yet.

    But, yeah. Everybody should have a wheel gun. And a 1911.

    And that new Ruger 8 shot 357 mag snubbie is also damn tempting…

  17. Looserounds.com

    Strange timing for this post. I am this week waiting to get an email back from Colt so I can call them up and buy a SSA Model P Artillery model in .45Colt with extra cylinder in 45ACP.

    I’m going to babble on a bit with some random thoughts if no one minds.

    I am not a BIG revolver guy though not to say I don’t like them. I think some of the so called advantageous are over sold. I love nostalgia as much as the next guy, but I think CCW of revolvers for those who take it serous, is for those who really put major effort into mastering their employment, as opposed to most of the revolver carriers that just like to stick a 5 shot down their front pocket.
    I have always said it I CCWed a revolver it would be a full size service revolver, Just like how I carry a full sized gov model M1911 all day every day of my life.

    I recently saw a S&W M29 with the 4 inch barrel being sold used at a gun shop for about 475. I am so tempted, Came out of an estate sale apparently. Though I am not much on S&W anything, that and the 686 are classics to me. A dear friend as the..M25 i tihnk? the thunder ranch 45ACP revolver. I would opt for 45 ACP or rimmed, 44 spl or 41 mag for my carry choices. Or a 45 long colt new service if I could find one I could live with. Huge fan of the .45 Colt round.
    I have owned a few pythons and Anaconda’s in my life, one Anaconda was a 4 inch custom shop with ported barrel and numbered chambers and some fine colt custom shop trigger work, but I have always LUSTED after the 6 inch barreled stainless Anaconda in 45LC. Another friend has the rare 44mags in the real tree like camo with redfield optic.

    Before I could legally buy a handgun, back in the 80s I wanted one of those Freedom Arms .454. Casull revolvers so bad I could barely stand it, though as I got older I seem to have lost the desire. Sometimes I run across them and have the money but never really jump on it.

    This new Colt SAA is likely to be the last revolver I buy in less I do run across a 45LC anaconda in SS with the right length barrel.

  18. DM

    I would say, QuietMan that a round butt 3″ 65 is a great defensive pistol. I have one and if I wasn’t a cop, it would probably be my daily carry gun. The realities of 21st century urban policing make the larger capacity of a semiauto wiser, in my opinion. Yes, spray and pray can happen, but my agency actually does a good job with firearms training. Your results may vary.

    Hognose, I can’t speak for the army; but I grew up on Marine bases and my understanding is that their MP’s carried .357 revolvers because the old, beat-to hell-at-that-point 1911’s weren’t up to the required accuracy. (Mid 80’s, pre M9).

    1. QuietMan

      That was some years ago, speaking to an agency whose varying mileage should have put them on foot. A number of them jumped ship to TSA. Heh.

      Concur on modern realities: My current carry is a G19, with KelTec BUG, OC, and SOCP dagger.

      1. RSR

        Somewhere recently either in comments or post, HN or commenters discussed how no police shooting has allowed officers to reload unless under cover, etc…

        Major food for thought in regards to weapon capacity IMO.

  19. SemperFido

    I mentioned in another article how I have been hunting with a .357 since the 70’s so I won’t go into more than that. But I did want to mention that I have a break top H&R nine shot .22 which is one of my favorite range guns.
    I have taught basic firearms handling to all of the grandkids with that handgun. It is fiendishly accurate. Every time a group of us go to the range I drag it along and set it on a stand with a 500 rnd box of cheap ammo and everyone will eventually gravitate to it.
    And it is like a nuclear bomb on small game.

  20. Cap'n Mike

    While shooting for the first time a buddies S&W revolver , I immediately realized a modified Isosceles was not a good way to get two hands on the thin revolver grip. It made me appreciate Jack Weaver.

    Anyone else have trouble using a thumbs forward grip on a wheelgun, or is that just part of the charm?

  21. obdo

    committed sixgunner here, s&w fanboi.

    got bored bullseying with that diy hkp7 trigger job and started to shoot my s&w wheelguns double action. state, national and european competitions.

    wolff springs and tetra gun teflon grease; remington .357 factory loads are close to max, giving good results and will blast the s/a shooting competitors into submission by shock and awe.

    yeah, hognose, you are right, sometimes the wheelguns are superior.
    and i’m not only talking about silhoueta.

  22. TRX

    #6: you can get a bigger boom with a revolver.

    Automatics have .50AE, .460 Rowland, .45 Win Mag… those aren’t even on the bottom rung of high-power revolver cartridges.

  23. Sixgunner

    “Misfire drill? Just fire again.”

    That’s not always a good idea. It’s how I blew the side of the barrel out on my Old Army, years ago. Didn’t hear the pop when the cap lit off and pushed the conical slug into the barrel. Sure DID feel the recoil when the next one out the cylinder smacked the rear of the first one and then “exited stage left”, stage = barrel in this case. Always wondered what the guys at Ruger said when the opened the box when it was sent back for a new barrel.

    So, misfire drill? DOUBLE CHECK that nothing actually got pushed out of the cylinder into the forcing cone/barrel. THEN fire again.

  24. Trone Abeetin

    Recently bought two Model 64 S&W, 4 inch heavy barrel and a snubbie. It brought me back, I used to have this unbelievable rhythm with revolvers. It was refreshing to shoot. I was shocked by the cost of fifty rounds of .38 special FMJ practice ammo, It was $28, holy bleep!

  25. Steve M.

    My first handgun was a blued Ruger Security Six in .357 with a four inch barrel and adjustable sights. It was an early Security Six with the squared off grip frame. 1971 production, I think. It was used in that way which makes shopping amongst used guns great. It had a rather tarnished look from years of dried oil and not much use. The cylinder didn’t even have drag marks on it. A fantastic firearm. Unfortunately, I sold it because I “needed” a semi-auto.

  26. Tennessee Budd

    After my Dad died, my mother decided she needed a portable device for self-defense. She knew I’d had a HCP for years & consulted me. I’d heard a lot about the SIG P290–very easy to rack it, etc., & as Ma was then 69, 5’2″ & 100#, that meant something. She shot well with Dad’s old Mk II, but it’s not easily concealable; she had difficulty with cycling the slides on my Tokarev, P-64, and P94 (I didn’t even suggest the 1911A1).
    We finally got her a Ruger LCR in 9mm. Having rarely fired any weapon since her rural KY childhood, she was more comfortable with the simplicity & reliability, and she managed the recoil quite well. She liked/likes it enough that she goes to the range on her own now, enjoys it immensely, & is a pretty good shot under 15 yards or so, & that’s all she needs to be able to do.
    For me, I truly love my GP100 (a KGP-141). It’s not the first I reach for when I need a weapon, but I’ll die owning that one.

    1. DaveP.

      “For me, I truly love my GP100 (a KGP-141). It’s not the first I reach for when I need a weapon, but I’ll die owning that one.”

      +1 or maybe +100.
      I carried a GP100 for a few years. Traded one of those “bad idea” off-brand autos for it and never looked back. Had the action slicked by a truly insane ‘smith I knew (now long dead, and disturbing the angels) and carried it in a pancake holster as an EDC. Now it’s been supplanted by a Glock, but I still own it and still love it. I’ve taught a bunch of people to shoot with it, too. If I was intending on a Viking funeral I’d have it buried with me.

  27. Michael Bane

    I believe the .44 Special is God’s Own Cartridge…the GP-100 .44 Special is one hell of a revolver (and I have a BUNCH of .44 Specials!). I’ve been running it a lot, and you’d be surprised at how quickly you can run the .44 Special with good self-defense rounds versus an identical .357 GP-100 with good self defense ammo.

    To be honest, when I hike the property here at the Secret Hidden Bunker or in the back-country here in Colorado, my constant buddy is a 2.75-inch .44 Magnum Redhawk rebuilt by Hamilton Bowen and stoked with Garrett 310-gr Defenders…in case I’m set upon by, say, a garbage truck or a backhoe…

    Michael B

  28. Dyspeptic Gunsmith

    The evolution of the internals of double-action revolvers are a study in “eliminating unseen complexity by adding complexity.”

    Consider first the internals of the classic Colt DA revolver. Open up most any Colt DA revolver (other than the snubbies – eg, open a New Service, Python, etc) and look at it.

    You see a very few parts in there. It appears quite simple – one V-spring mainspring, one tiny coil spring under the bolt, one more under the strut, and that’s about it. As you sit there, looking at how the lockwork works, the non-gunsmith is often mystified – how does all that happen in the sequence and timing with so few parts?

    The magic of hand-fitting parts in the lockwork by experienced hands, that’s how.

    The secret is in the rebound lever, where the timing for Colt’s DA mechanism all comes together. There’s a little boss with angular faces at odd angles on the right side of the rebound lever that you can’t usually see while it is in the gun. The faces of that “boss” control the timing of the lockwork. How the bolt tail, the hand, the trigger and hammer all fit up against the rebound lever is rather critical. Change the angles or dimensions of how the parts fit up against the rebound lever and you’ve possible thrown the revolver out of time – perhaps badly so. Getting it back in time could be quite time-consuming, because you can’t fix “just this one thing.” You need to look at the timing of a Colt DA revolver as a whole, not just as individual functions (eg, the bolt is rising late or early vs. the hand rotating the cylinder too far or not far enough… – these problems might be related, or part of the same root problem).

    But the Colt design looks so simple – so few parts. The Colt DA design is elegant, but not as robust in the face of abuse and ignorance as other designs.

    Now open up a S&W DA revolver. More parts… but for the gunsmith, suddenly these additional parts have made repairing or timing the lockwork much, much easier. By splitting off the trigger reset into it’s own spring and parts chain, now the trigger/mainspring needs to run only the “go forward” part of the lockwork. Diagnosing and fixing problems in timing is now much easier, because the trigger reset has been cleaved off from the rest of the timing sequence with the addition of a few parts.

    For revolvers that will be abused, I recommend the S&W or Ruger DA design. They’re easier (and therefore cheaper) to put right.

  29. Dienekes

    Carried a .357 wheelgun most of my career when Glocks and SIGs were coming on strong. My agency had a long tradition of actual pistoleros who could shoot. I never felt undergunned with the old Security Six–talk about Old Reliable…About the only real drawback to the revolver is the limited capacity; in these nutty times the semiauto is the default option. Even then I prefer the BHP; classic, reliable, and NOT UGLY!

    I guess the real answer to capacity is an AR carbine but the culture isn’t quite ready for universal issue yet. Yet.

    1. Hognose Post author

      We get closer every time some dindu with an attitude ambushes a couple of cops, like just happened in CA.

      The guy was a career violent criminal and they let him out. Because California, bleeding hearts and stuff.

  30. Pingback: SayUncle » Speaking of revolvers

  31. RSR

    Personally for me, a revolver is much more appealing as match to a .357 levergun than the revolver itself driving…

    That said, I truly do find revolvers scratch the classic craftsmanship and steel handgun niche much more than a 1911 or hipower

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