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  #51  
Old 02-11-2010, 01:52 AM
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Nice pictures. Mine is a pre-lock 6", close to NIB. For any kind of extended woods carry I'd go with a 4".
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Old 02-13-2010, 06:59 PM
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I keep reading about the MIM hammer and trigger. But, I've seen a couple of Talo 686s on Gunbrokers that said forged hammer and trigger? Did they go back to the forged pieces or are the Talo ones special?

Thanks, John
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  #53  
Old 02-13-2010, 08:38 PM
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I can't say what's "best" but I can say that mine, a 686-6 6" is fantastic. I'm no bullseye shooter and with a lot of handguns my accuracy beyond 15 yards is pretty iffy. However, last week, I took my 686 to the range. At 25 yards, shooting offhand, double action, I put five in the 10 ring plus one in the nine, for a 2 1/2 inch group. I followed that up by putting 18 consecutive rounds within the 10 ring at 10 yards with the group at about 1 1/2". I do not believe that it is possible for me to improve on that degree of accuracy. So I say, again, my 686-6, with its MIM parts, and yes, its lock, is a simply fantastic handgun.
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  #54  
Old 02-14-2010, 12:19 AM
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IMHO, the BEST is a 3" CS-1, but my second choice would be the one I own. I have a 2.5" 686-4 with Eagle grips that I just love.

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Old 02-14-2010, 01:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Raspy View Post
I keep reading about the MIM hammer and trigger. But, I've seen a couple of Talo 686s on Gunbrokers that said forged hammer and trigger? Did they go back to the forged pieces or are the Talo ones special?

Thanks, John
I've seen forged hammers and triggers on the new guns, usually Performance Center guns or special editions (i.e. the Talo). I believe these are special parts; they're still cut for the internal lock, which I'll bet is a bit more tedious than simply injection-molding the shapes for the IL, which is probably why they don't use it for standard production revolvers.
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  #56  
Old 02-14-2010, 09:31 AM
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I'm not sure if mine is the "best" or not, but I like it... 686-5 3'' unfluted no lock.

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  #57  
Old 02-14-2010, 11:31 AM
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It seems that the -4's were all over the place regarding use on MIM parts or not. I have a -4 with no MIM and the old style cylinder release. I have a -4 7 shot 2.5 also with no MIM and old style cylinder release. I had a -4 2.4 " with old style cylinder release BUT it has MIM trigger/hammer. I would suspect the a lot had to do with using up old inventory. The -4 is the stopping point for me simply because I did not like the cosmetic changes to the -5 (leaving aside the MIM issue). I never warmed up to the new style cylinder release, cylinder stop lug or the frame mounted firing pin. To me, centerfire S&W's just look better with the hammer mounted pin. And at my age I have earned the right to be opinionated over stuff that really doesn't matter
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  #58  
Old 02-14-2010, 11:08 PM
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It seems that the -4's were all over the place regarding use on MIM parts or not. I have a -4 with no MIM and the old style cylinder release. I have a -4 7 shot 2.5 also with no MIM and old style cylinder release. I had a -4 2.4 " with old style cylinder release BUT it has MIM trigger/hammer. I would suspect the a lot had to do with using up old inventory. The -4 is the stopping point for me simply because I did not like the cosmetic changes to the -5 (leaving aside the MIM issue). I never warmed up to the new style cylinder release, cylinder stop lug or the frame mounted firing pin. To me, centerfire S&W's just look better with the hammer mounted pin. And at my age I have earned the right to be opinionated over stuff that really doesn't matter
I think they were a) transitioning to the MIM trigger and b) using up the old forged triggers. They also started putting the new-style MIM cylinder releases on their guns around that time. MIM hammers came out with the -5, which had the lockwork redesigned to use the MIM hammer and frame-mounted firing pin (and also the integrated frame-lug).
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  #59  
Old 01-02-2014, 07:24 PM
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A noob here, from Ohio--really appreciating the wisdom and generosity of folks sharing their passion. Have been searching for a 686, 7 shot in the 3 inch barrel. Something about that configuration is just special. Would love to find a -4 but will have to see what I come across.

Great forum!
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  #60  
Old 01-02-2014, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by fungunnin View Post
OK guys. Which version of the 686 is seen as the best configuration? Barrel length? Number of shots? Dash number? I am looking forward to your opinions.
My vote goes to the 7-shot 686+ Mountain Gun, with its 4 inch tapered barrel and round butt. It is the same weight as a Model 66, is stronger, holds one more round and is long enough to be quite accurate and with the round butt, it is very concealable. In addition, there are no concerns about the use of Magnum ammo on a regular basis as there was with the K frames.
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Old 01-02-2014, 08:35 PM
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Have a 586-4 with 4" bbl, and just today, bought the wife a 686-4 with 4" bbl. My 586 has the wider target hammer & trigger, and now trying to find the same for her 686. Anybody got a set for sale ? LOL !!
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  #62  
Old 01-02-2014, 11:50 PM
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Originally Posted by shawn mccarver View Post
My vote goes to the 7-shot 686+ Mountain Gun, with its 4 inch tapered barrel and round butt. It is the same weight as a Model 66, is stronger, holds one more round and is long enough to be quite accurate and with the round butt, it is very concealable. In addition, there are no concerns about the use of Magnum ammo on a regular basis as there was with the K frames.
*
DING DING DING, we have a winner! It also has a proper barrel shape instead of that hopelessly ugly, answer in search of a question, full lug abomination. I swear they only did that as a tip of the hat to the Python, and whoever is responsible for that should beaten to severe discomfort, repeated with vigor as soon as they heal.
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  #63  
Old 01-03-2014, 12:05 AM
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I traded my 686-1 6" for a 686-4+ 4" and could not be happier.
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  #64  
Old 01-03-2014, 12:08 AM
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Smile -4 is my favorite

My favorite is the 686-4 series. I would accept anything that is -4 or less, but that is my preference. I have owned two of the -4 revolvers, and the one that I still have is a like new 2.5 in bbl model. I prefer the case hardened forged hammer and trigger that this series has. My current revolver has the old style cylinder release, but my previous one had the newer style cylinder release, and I can live with either.
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  #65  
Old 01-03-2014, 12:08 AM
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I have a 686 no dash with a six inch barrel, not only is it a nice shooter my wife likes to shoot it and does so better than I.

I have read this entire thread and many others having to do with S&W model 686. I do not recall any negative comments about this revolver. Some like a shorter barrel and others a longer barrel. Some like the older models others like the newer versions. I do not recall anyone not liking the M686 platform. If I did not own a 357 and wanted one I would buy a 686 regardless of the dash. Is one dash better than the next? Not according to those who own 686s cause they seem to like whatever dash they own.
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  #66  
Old 01-03-2014, 01:08 AM
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My only complaint is, compared to an N-frame, the 686 is pretty muzzle heavy. Less weight in the frame and more in the barrel. For some, this is a plus, others it is a minus. I do like the balance of the N frame better but I love my 686-4+ 6". Kind of wish it was 5" but I don't think they made that barrel length...
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  #67  
Old 01-03-2014, 02:15 AM
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I'll have to go with the original "no dash" in 4 inch. Well mostly because it's the one I inherited but this is an amazing revolver, feels like a .22 when shot with .38spl, very controllable with magnums. If I was just now searching I'd be mighty tempted by a 2.5" -4 or earlier, on my short list of desired guns.

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  #68  
Old 01-03-2014, 08:08 AM
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Have a 586-4 with 4" bbl, and just today, bought the wife a 686-4 with 4" bbl. My 586 has the wider target hammer & trigger, and now trying to find the same for her 686. Anybody got a set for sale ? LOL !!

Taaa-Daaaa !! Numrich Gun Parts has 'em !!
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  #69  
Old 01-03-2014, 09:32 AM
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I still regard my 5" half lug 686-6 7-shooter which, as shown in reply #34 here, came stock with Ahrends grips and a HiViz sight. Not a fan of full lugs - or Pythons - my '2004 Stocking Dealer Exclusive' was an obvious choice. Next came the 6-shot 686SSR - I went to the dealer to buy one - he was out - but had the new 627 Pro, shown with the 5" h-l 686+ in reply #34, at the same price - it came home with me... my 5" h-l 686+ languished in the safe. The 4" 627 Pro would all but join the 686+ when I bought my first 2 5/8" PC627 UDR - nirvana - for me. Each step was an improvement in the 'extension of your hand' feel - making shooting more intuitive. The 5" h-l 686+ has the best balance/feel of any 4"+ 686/+ models I've tried... IMHO!

Stainz

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Old 01-03-2014, 09:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shawn mccarver View Post
My vote goes to the 7-shot 686+ Mountain Gun, with its 4 inch tapered barrel and round butt. It is the same weight as a Model 66, is stronger, holds one more round and is long enough to be quite accurate and with the round butt, it is very concealable. In addition, there are no concerns about the use of Magnum ammo on a regular basis as there was with the K frames.
Shawn is very much correct here...........I was unaware of how well the 686+ Mountain Gun shot or carried until I found one. I have been a fan of Mountain Guns for some time now, but the 686+ was my first in 38/357.

If I had to have another option (non-Mountian Gun) I would choose any of the CS-1 686's.
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Old 01-03-2014, 11:18 AM
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I have a set of sister's,686-5+,one of which is a Mt gun.I think any prelock 686 is a piece of perfection.I am off to the gun show in Orlando this weekend,and who knows I may be lucky,and come across one like in post # 56.
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Old 01-03-2014, 01:08 PM
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Below is my 6" 686-3 I bought new in 1989. I would also like a 4"er for the lighter weight and quicker handling.

If you are getting a new production 686, look along the top of the frame/barrel junction. Some of the new ones are leaving S&W with their barrels misaligned with the frame.

I'm not sure if the barrel installer is twisting the barrels too much or not enough, but I have seen more than a few NIB guns at gun stores with this issue.

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  #73  
Old 01-03-2014, 01:16 PM
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Imho the best version of the S&W Model 686 is the.

686-6 with a 4 inch barrel and a 6 shot cylinder.
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Old 01-03-2014, 03:14 PM
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Default I have a 6"

I have a 6" for the range but I think overall (and I'm sure that many would agree) 3"-5" is more ideal for balance as mine seems a little nose-heavy. I prefer older ones like a lot of people, too.

People talk about getting trigger jobs done on their 686s and my question is 'What on earth for???'

BTW, the 686 no dash models recommend a factory recall to do work on the firing pin and bushing.

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Old 01-03-2014, 03:49 PM
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I love my 686 3" especially with s&w custom power trigger kit. Pulls at a perfect 3.5 and smooth as silk. Probably my most accurate pistol/revolver I own hands down. BTW I like the "L" also. Can shoot all day and not worry about shaking something loose!
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Old 01-03-2014, 05:13 PM
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686 Plus Pro... 7 shot, 5" stylish squared barrel, moon clips, interchangable front sight, how can you go wrong?
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Old 01-04-2014, 03:01 AM
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I like the -3 and -4 guns.

Both have improvements over earlier versions.

The -3's still have the flash chromed hammers and triggers which makes sense on a stainless gun-they won't rust.

The -4's have the new extractor (stronger than the old 2 pin alignment) still have forged hammers and triggers as well as drilled and tapped for scope mounting. The case hardened hammers and triggers can rust though.
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Old 01-04-2014, 02:36 PM
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Four year old thread?
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Old 01-04-2014, 03:01 PM
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I think the 686 is the finest revolver ever made by Smith&Wesson. I started at the PD with a 686, 4 inch barrel, no dash (stamped M for modified). I carried this for about 10 or 12 years before we switched to the Glock. The trigger on my 686 was like a dream and when I was doing my part it always did its part. I would really love to find a snubby 686 for a good price,OK, I am just dreaming but sometimes dreams do come true. Just my thoughts from the Big Sky Country. It is a balmy 14 degrees, snowing, and the wind blowing here in God's country.
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Old 01-04-2014, 03:15 PM
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The one I have in my hand, but there are 10 to chose from.
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Old 01-05-2014, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by stevieboy View Post
I can't say what's "best" but I can say that mine, a 686-6 6" is fantastic. I'm no bullseye shooter and with a lot of handguns my accuracy beyond 15 yards is pretty iffy. However, last week, I took my 686 to the range. At 25 yards, shooting offhand, double action, I put five in the 10 ring plus one in the nine, for a 2 1/2 inch group. I followed that up by putting 18 consecutive rounds within the 10 ring at 10 yards with the group at about 1 1/2". I do not believe that it is possible for me to improve on that degree of accuracy. So I say, again, my 686-6, with its MIM parts, and yes, its lock, is a simply fantastic handgun.
I totally agree. I am fairly new to S&W guns so maybe I lack the historical perspective of some. Also, I am not a collector, I am a shooter/hobbiest/prepper. But let me make the following points.

1. The lock. I could barely care less about the lock. I don't think that it does anything one way or the other. IMHO way too much ado is made about the lock. I never met anyone who had a failure due to the lock and I don't know anyone who has. There are a million other things more likely to go wrong with a revolver than a lock-based malfunction. Sure I would prefer not having the lock, but it is a trivial matter; no big deal.

2. MIM parts. This is a silly argument. MIM is the future of small parts. I never have experienced a failure of an MIM part and I don't know anyone who has.

3. The new Smiths are wonderful guns. Buy new and enjoy. Our family has a 686+ 6" and a 686+ 4" and these are wonderful, accurate, reliable, and fun revolvers. The triggers are great. Just as good as old ones that I have handled. As always, if you don't like the trigger, get a competent trigger job.

Since it does not exist without pictures, here is my fairly new (2013) S&W 686+ 4"

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Old 01-05-2014, 11:40 PM
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Never owned one, but here'd be my pick:
http://www.smith-wesson.com/webapp/w...5_757751_image
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Old 01-06-2014, 01:05 AM
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Love both of mine. -3 on the bottom and a -4 on top.
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Old 01-06-2014, 02:54 AM
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The one I like best is my 3-inch converted to a 6 shot .41Special by Hamilton Bowen.

No can't post pictures as I'm technologically challenged.
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Old 01-06-2014, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by LouisianaJoe View Post
I have a 686-5 7" I had it lettered. Only 30 made.

I have a 7" that's also fairly rare....

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  #86  
Old 01-06-2014, 01:28 PM
Sparrowbird Sparrowbird is offline
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I have my thoughts and as I have read this I keep rereading all of my thoughts, so, with that thought in mind, I think I'll pass on adding my thoughts to this discussion.
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Old 01-06-2014, 06:50 PM
Nick B Nick B is offline
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Originally Posted by jtcarm View Post
Never owned one, but here'd be my pick:
Pro Series - Smith & Wesson
My friend just bought one of those and I gotta say if I didn't own five 686's already I'd buy one . It's one sweet shooter with a great action .
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  #88  
Old 01-07-2014, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by SAFireman View Post
Shawn is very much correct here...........I was unaware of how well the 686+ Mountain Gun shot or carried until I found one. I have been a fan of Mountain Guns for some time now, but the 686+ was my first in 38/357.

If I had to have another option (non-Mountian Gun) I would choose any of the CS-1 686's.
I vote this one also - the 686+ Mountain Gun. Not just because I have one, but also because it just seems to feel, shoot, handle, carry and point to perfection.
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  #89  
Old 04-15-2018, 10:54 AM
rubiranch rubiranch is online now
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Is there a down side or a negative to the -6 model or is it mostly personal preference?
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Old 04-15-2018, 11:04 AM
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This is my 686-4 round butt that I've owned for many years.


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  #91  
Old 04-15-2018, 11:26 AM
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I swear by my 686P 2 1/2 inch pre lock. Had it magna ported and rest stock. Smoothest action out of the box I ever saw. Got a 586, 6 inch with scope I hunt with. Can't beat them especially since I thought a 4" model 19 was the ONLY revolver.
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  #92  
Old 04-15-2018, 11:49 AM
HOUSTON RICK HOUSTON RICK is offline
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I generally go with the six inch barrels for non-carry revolvers, but went with the 4 inch barrel for my 686+ just because I thought I might carry it. The lock is not an issue for me on my few guns that have it. I would take the extra round any day. I would have liked the Talo version 686, for the non-fluted cylinder (yeah more weight but looks cool) but the one time I saw it, I bought an R8 instead. I lost patience looking for a Talo and bought a stock 686+. I am happy.
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  #93  
Old 04-15-2018, 12:55 PM
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i like my S&W model 686-4PP, product code 104272.....
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Old 04-15-2018, 03:56 PM
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"I am a 686aholic..." and I am so grateful to be the caretaker of these fine shooters. My son and his children will have a blast with these.















okay I'll stop here.

Last edited by Mehutch; 04-15-2018 at 03:59 PM.
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  #95  
Old 04-16-2018, 09:04 PM
fishcreekrim fishcreekrim is offline
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Six shot 4 barrel -4 , that is what I want in a
686, JMHO/ymmv
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  #96  
Old 04-17-2018, 08:25 AM
0311INF 0311INF is offline
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I like any -4 or earlier the best, as long as it hasn't been abused or been a handloader's experiment gun. I've had a few vintage L frames and they're pretty much equal as far as trigger, fit and so on.
Currently have a -3 with a 6" barrel.

The -6 is a fine revolver, but given the choice between old and new (thankfully there are many out there for reasonable prices), I'll stick with old.
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Old 04-17-2018, 08:33 AM
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The blued steel version is the best, aka 586.
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  #98  
Old 04-17-2018, 10:54 AM
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I love ❤️ my 686-6 with 2 1/2" barrel. LOVE IT!
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:07 AM
RGVshooter RGVshooter is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fungunnin View Post
OK guys. Which version of the 686 is seen as the best configuration? Barrel length? Number of shots? Dash number? I am looking forward to your opinions.
Another question that's impossible to answer because everyone loves their 686 regardless of configuration. But if there was a correct answer then it would be my 4" 686-6.

I feel the 4" is the best all around camping, field, duty, hunting companion out there.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:19 AM
Elliot45 Elliot45 is offline
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I have the 686+ Pro. It is a great size with a 5" barrel which isn't too heavy as it is tapered. I put rosewood grips on it as my personal preference along with a red fiber optic sight. It's extremely accurate and has a nice sight radius with the 5". I also have a friend with a 686+ with the 3" barrel. I think that is as short as I would like to go and shoot magnums as it handles the recoil very well. I also thought that it was very accurate. It boils down to whatever your personal preference is, I don't think you can go wrong with any of the Smiths. Having the + model is nice with the extra shot.

Regards, Elliot45
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