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Old 11-28-2011, 07:07 PM
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Default Recommend .357 for conceal carry....

Looking for a 6 shot or more .357 magnum with a 3" or less barrel. I currently have a 642, but looking for a little more punch.
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:16 PM
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Kinda likin' my Model 66. Still trying to carry it IWB; a little bulkier then the 642 but like the accuracy and the extra round.
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:16 PM
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I carried a 686+ with a 3" bbl for awhile, then went down to a 686 with 2.5" bbl before settling on a Model 66-2 with 2.5" bbl for my primary carry.

My experience was kinda like the story of Goldilocks & the Three Bears, when I got the Model 66 I felt that it was "just right."

Your mileage may vary

Edited to add; For the record, I carry cross-draw.......


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Old 11-28-2011, 07:18 PM
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Im liking the 66-2 2.5" ALOT! It just is not easy to come by. I dont even think there is a new production model like that is there?
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:47 PM
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9399 Noles,

I have a model 66 S&W 2 1/2" I bought on Gunbroker.com. Keep checking that site and one or more will show up. I carried one as a detective in the 80s. A little bulky for concealed carry for my liking now so I carry a Glock 27 every day.

If you would post as 9399 GA DAWGS, I might let you have it for next to nothing.......only kidding of course. Good luck, the 66 is a fine weapon if the bulk doesn't bother you.
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:48 PM
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Seems like we have a winner here, the 66.....or 19.....with 2.5" barrel. A little tough to find, but they're still out there although getting more expansive all the time.
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:56 PM
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I'd buy a snub nose 686 as it's built stronger then the then the K frame
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:57 PM
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A 3" 13 or 65 would be a fine choice too!

Last edited by WFR; 11-28-2011 at 07:59 PM. Reason: added picture
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Old 11-28-2011, 07:58 PM
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lol I can pull for the Dogs one saturday every year... As I am sure you where pulling for us this past saturday
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:00 PM
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Isn't a 686 L frame a little larger than the K frames?
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:02 PM
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If you don't mind the little bit of extra weight and want to shoot a steady diet of magnums then take fyimo's advice and go with a L-frame snub.
Here's a 3" 686-4 (my father's only handgun).
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:07 PM
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A 3" model 65 is the only way to go. Snag free and simple with a set of grips to suite you is your best bet! Ahrends offers quite a selection.....The boot and retro combats do it for me!
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KEN L View Post
A 3" model 65 is the only way to go. Snag free and simple with a set of grips to suite you is your best bet! Ahrends offers quite a selection.....The boot and retro combats do it for me!
Pictures Ken, we need pictures of those Ahrends on that SS piece!
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:23 PM
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My 2.5 66 no dash is a fine carry gun. Someday, I'll have a 3" 65. I think that would be perfect. In the meantime I carry a 3" Ruger SP101.
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:30 PM
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60 pro would be my pick
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:40 PM
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my carry...357 mag model 327 8 shots performance center 2" barrel.....my favorite and i have a few side pieces...good luck
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Old 11-28-2011, 08:41 PM
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If its for concealed carry a 2.5" 66 would be my choice hands down. Chances of ever having to use it are slim. Lighter than a 686 and also thinner, making for a lighter load and less bulk from the thicker cylinder. Can pack mine all day in a Lobo IWB holster and don't know its there and neither does anyone else. I like adjustable sights on all of my revolvers to use different brands of ammo.

Load that baby up with six 158 gr. Speer Gols Dots. Have a speedloader on in case you need more ammo and you're very well armed.

They're not called the Combat Masterpiece for nothing!
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:04 PM
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I need to go get my hands on some different models to make up my mind. I love the look of the 66-2. I think coming across one locally will be hard though. Also I have a 686 SSR and although it is a 4" barrel I still could not imagine comfortably carrying that around.
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sportsterguy View Post
They're not called the Combat Masterpiece for nothing!
By that logic, the Distinguished Combat Magnum family should be the winner...

The Combat Masterpiece was the .38 Special...

Last edited by Maximumbob54; 11-28-2011 at 09:17 PM.
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:29 PM
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No one suggested a 242?



ETA: oops, sorry... not rated for 357

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Old 11-28-2011, 09:35 PM
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If a 6 shot .357 magnum is what your wanting i suggest a s&w model 686.
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:38 PM
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How about a 386 Night Guard. A 7 shot 357 L Frame Airweight with a 2.75" barrel. XS 24/7 Tritium front sight, Cylinder & Slide Extreme Duty back sight. Weighing in at around 25 or so Ounces.

A best of all worlds sort of gun. Big enough to hang on to, just enough sight radius to shoot accurately, short enough barrel to carry well, and light as a steel J Frame.

I do not have one, but a do have a 310 Night Guard. It is no problem to carry at all.

Bob
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:55 PM
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Wow that 386 Sounds SWEET. Sounds like just what I am looking for. Anyone have one?
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:21 AM
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Default .357 carry gun

I would probably carry the 640-1, while a little heavy, it can very comfortably handle the potent .357 caliber in this small package. This gun can be fired from complete concealment, from within a coat pocket... An advantage which is HUGE in an uncertain defensive encounter! This tremendous advantage is only possible with an internal hammer revolver model!

Many defensive situations occur at face to face distance and are completely unexpected by the victim... The attacker appears unthreatening at first, then suddenly reveals their intent... In such a situation, there is no time to pull a handgun from a holstered carry. But you can hold this revolver in your hand, inside your coat pocket, able to fire INSTANTLY, without having to even pull the gun out if you are unexpectedly attacked. You can actually get the drop on the bad guy when he thinks he has the drop on you! For defensive carry, I rely primarily on larger, holstered handguns (Glocks mostly), but I will always have a 640-1 available for pocket carry in addition to the larger handgun.



but it is only a five-shot and you want six. So if you can deal with the bulk and weight, this will shoot like a dream



A happy medium between the two would be a 3" 13 or 65, arguably the finest carry .357's ever made:





What makes these great for carry duty are the fixed sights and the 3" barrel is good for building velocity & energy, and makes the ejector long enough for complete ejection (shortcomings of the 2.5" models).

I also like the weight of these all steel models... They shoot with quick return to target and absorb recoil quite comfortably.

Of course there are other models which would do nicely, but I feel the 3" 13 and 65 offer the perfect combination of attributes, with the 13 winning the beauty contest and the 65 winning the finish durability contest.

Last edited by DHart; 11-29-2011 at 12:39 AM.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:26 AM
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Are these models, specifically the 386 on the same frame as the 686? My ssr just feels a tad on the large side. The 642 I dont even realize I have, sometimes I have to check to make sure before I walk out.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:35 AM
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Quote:
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A 3" model 65 is the only way to go. Snag free and simple with a set of grips to suite you is your best bet!
What Ken said, everything you need and nothing you don't.
My only carry .357:

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Old 11-29-2011, 12:43 AM
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You don't need to shoot anybody more than 5 times with a .357.

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Old 11-29-2011, 01:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sportsterguy View Post
If its for concealed carry a 2.5" 66 would be my choice hands down. Chances of ever having to use it are slim. Lighter than a 686 and also thinner, making for a lighter load and less bulk from the thicker cylinder. Can pack mine all day in a Lobo IWB holster and don't know its there and neither does anyone else. I like adjustable sights on all of my revolvers to use different brands of ammo.

Load that baby up with six 158 gr. Speer Gols Dots. Have a speedloader on in case you need more ammo and you're very well armed.

They're not called the Combat Masterpiece for nothing!
Couldn't agree more with the 19 or 66 as they are my favorites. The 686 is great, too, but as you can see in the side by side you are toting more weight with not much to gain. Yes, I know...K frames not quite as robust as L frames but IMHO you can't take advantage of the hotter loads in a snubbie anyway...not enough barrel...just bigger flame! The K frame can pack more than enough .357 ballistic to calm anyone down. The 65 also deserves a big thumbs up for carry with it's smooth sights. I carry my K's with a Lobo pancake snap-loop.

1st pic is 19-3 and 66-1 (both 2 1/2") along with a 66-3 3" which also carries well. 2nd pic is a 686 to the right of a 66. 3rd pic is 686/66 cylinder view to show the extra bulk of the 686. It may not look like much but it matters!
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Old 11-29-2011, 02:05 AM
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Question Why go big for more "punch"?

Call me crazy but you mentioned "I don't realize I have it on", and this leads me to staying small but getting the extra punch you want. Well, if 1200 FPS (chrono'd---OUCH!!!) from a 125 gr. Gold dot is enough for you, then here is a suggestion............M&P 360
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:14 AM
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Hate to be getting picky. But does anyone have a side by side comparison of a 642 and the 386 night guard? Part of what I am looking for is not only the .357 mag but also a little more size to grip.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:35 AM
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I like all steel revolvers, so the new 3" M60's look just fine to me!
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Old 11-29-2011, 10:11 AM
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Get a pre lock 65 or 66. Everything you need in a revolver and nothing you don't. Great value, still, for the money. Regards 18DAI
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Old 11-29-2011, 10:28 AM
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I go between this 7-shot 3" M681 .357 Mag. and my 14+1 shot SIG P229R .357 SIG for CC.
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
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I need to go get my hands on some different models to make up my mind. I love the look of the 66-2. I think coming across one locally will be hard though. Also I have a 686 SSR and although it is a 4" barrel I still could not imagine comfortably carrying that around.
If you can't imagine packing the 686SSR then you'd not be happy with a 2.5" or 3" 686 either, the difference in weight achieved by shaving off an inch or so of barrel is going to be pretty negligible.

You might keep your eyes open for a 19 in 2.5", they still turn up occasionally, often in nickel. They are probably less desireable as a carry gun than the 66 simply because they require more care and maintenance due to not being made of stainless steel, but some guys don't care for SS and thus prefer that. I picked up a nice 1980 vintage 19 a month or so back for a good price. I posted the pic in a different thread, but here it is again:



Note the blue box. That was not original, nickel guns of that time came in a grey box. This was the topic of an entire thread. The gun itself is really pristine, but it wasn't NIB since the box was a phony. I brought this to the attention of the dealer and they cut the price to a very reasonable level.
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:50 AM
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Ruger's SP 101 can be ordered with a spurless hammer
making it double action only. 2 & 1/4 or 3 & 1/4 inch barrel.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:03 PM
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Consider the 2.5" Model 66 or the 386 Night Guard if weight is an issue.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:16 PM
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I'm really enjoying my 386NG. I've only had it a few weeks, so I'm still in the "honeymoon" phase. It shoots greats, and despite the light weight I have no issue with the short-barrel Gold Dot .357 ammo.

Carried it all day yesterday (12 hours+) and it was dang comfortable.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:24 PM
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I'm really enjoying my 386NG. I've only had it a few weeks, so I'm still in the "honeymoon" phase. It shoots greats, and despite the light weight I have no issue with the short-barrel Gold Dot .357 ammo.

Carried it all day yesterday (12 hours+) and it was dang comfortable.
You have any Photos of the setup? I'm worried about the size. I'm short and stalky. 5' 10" 225. If i was 6' 4" I don't think it would be an issue with a 2.5" 686
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by 9399NOLES View Post
You have any Photos of the setup? I'm worried about the size. I'm short and stalky. 5' 10" 225. If i was 6' 4" I don't think it would be an issue with a 2.5" 686
I'm sorry I don't at the moment. I can try to take some. I'm 6'0" and 240 lbs, if that helps.

I carried it in an outside-the-waistband Lobo Gunleather enhanced pancake holster with a stiff 1.5" belt. Wore an oversized sweatshirt over it.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by fyimo View Post
I'd buy a snub nose 686 as it's built stronger then the then the K frame
Are you taking this position from the perspective of a steady diet of .357s? How much bigger and heavier is it than the 66? Do you know how it would compare with the Colt DS or Magnum Carry? I have been thinking of a 66 or 19, and hadn't considered the 686. Please give me some reasons for doing so.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Photoman44 View Post
Consider the 2.5" Model 66 or the 386 Night Guard if weight is an issue.
I agree with Photoman.
I have carried a Ruger SP snub..but am now carrying the 66 snub, and notice no difference between the two.

I like the 66 IWB for a more secure feel (closer to body), but OWB for comfort...
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  #42  
Old 11-29-2011, 10:33 PM
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Despite this being the S&W forum, and even though I love my 2.5" 19-4, one of the finest CCW weapons is a 2.75" Ruger Speed-Six.
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Old 11-29-2011, 10:57 PM
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OK. I'll weigh in. I've carried my Combat Magnum 4 inch IWB very comfortably for years. I like the adjustable sights, longer sight radius and I've slimmed down some Herretts stocks. The only part of the gun that is even slightly bulky is the cylinder. Compared to the Glock pistols, which are "cylinder-thick-bulky" all over, the Combat is more comfortable. And that "long" 4 inch barrel even sticks through the minimalist IWB holster, but tucks into a spot so's ya don't even know its there. I've never felt the need for a shorter barrel for a gun carried in holster.
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:53 PM
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Back in the day, my hiking/backpacking gun was the 2.5" M66. Then the Ruger SP101 came along, and then the M&P340. Can't imagine ever again carrying anything heavier or larger than the M&P!
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:23 AM
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For me it comes down to weight. I don't want to lug a steel gun around all day. I prefer the alloy/scandium frame guns.

In .357, that comes down to the L frame 7 shot 386 (same size frame as the 686) or the J frame 5 shot 340 (internal hammer) or 360 (external hammer). I actually have the 340 M&P.

Handle both and see what you prefer. You can always change the grip to suit your needs.

Here's my 396NG which is the same size as the 386NG, just in .44 spl. It's a pretty good size gun.



Here's my 340 M&P next to my 642 Pro (.38 spl cut for moon clips). I've got big hands and run a pretty good size grip on these little J's. And unlike others, I love the grip that comes on the NG's.

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  #46  
Old 11-30-2011, 12:58 AM
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I like the 3" 13 or 66. Easy to carry, easier to shoot than the 2.5" models.
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Old 11-30-2011, 01:02 AM
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The original request was for a recommendation on a CC gun with six shots "or more." As long as people have suggested 7-shot L-frames, why not accept the extra couple of ounces and the additional quarter inch of thickness and go all the way to a snubnose 8-shot N-frame? You can go with the 2-5/8 inch "Blood Work" 627 revolver (which I really like) or the two-inch 327.

Here's my preference situated with options for quick loading and different grasping. Manageable recoil and extreme accuracy. What's not to like?

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Old 11-30-2011, 01:02 AM
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Another vote for the 386NG. I've had mine for about 3 years now, and like it a lot. One of my favorite off-duty guns.
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Old 11-30-2011, 11:40 AM
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And to add.

If you want to use moonclips in the 386NG, Pinnacle can cut your cylinder for $80. And it will work with or without MC.
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Old 11-30-2011, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Dump1567 View Post
And to add.

If you want to use moonclips in the 386NG, Pinnacle can cut your cylinder for $80. And it will work with or without MC.
Good to know - does this void the warranty?
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340, 629, 640, 642, 681, 686, ahrends, ccw, combat masterpiece, combats, concealed, ejector, j frame, l frame, leather, lock, m13, masterpiece, model 65, model 66, ruger, scandium, snubnose, speedloader

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