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Old 09-03-2014, 11:08 PM
H2H H2H is offline
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Default Shooting j frame snubs (640)

Hello, anyone recall a name of an individual/instructor that was a good marksman or specialized it training with the .38 special snub revolver revolver (640)?

I am looking for a good resource to learn how to shoot the 640. Not new to shooting or revolvers, however having difficulties shooting this gun. Jokingly, I have shotguns that pattern better.

I would even appreciate a book / article recommendation.
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Old 09-03-2014, 11:24 PM
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I have five "J" frames. One thing they are not, are bulls eye guns. Stick to 10-15 yard shooting for a while with your chosen practice ammo. With a two handed hold, gently squeeze the trigger until the weapon fires. Try not to anticipate recoil. My Dad, who was a Highway Patrol firearms instructor, use to hand me a revolver and leave an empty chamber to teach me about this. And early on, when I would come upon the empty chamber as I pulled the trigger, I would occasionally flinch. That is anticipating recoil, and it hurts accurate placed shots. With practice, you'll get better. Then don't forget to practice some with your chosen defensive ammo.
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Old 09-03-2014, 11:45 PM
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I have found that good grips help a lot with "J" frame snubbies. My daily carry is the 642 and I am currently using Crimson Trace LG 305 grips.

If I weren't using Crimson Trace grips my other choice would be Pachmayr Compac Grips. Here they are on my SS Bodyguard:



These grips are positively comfortable and will go a LOT towards giving your "J" frame "hitability".

They may not be "pretty" but just remember what Grandmother used to say, "Pretty is as pretty does"!

Dale53
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Old 09-03-2014, 11:51 PM
duke77togo duke77togo is offline
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I suggestion checking out:

Michael de Bethencourt, snubtraining.com | Home

Claude Werner, Teaching the Snub Nose Revolver | tacticalprofessor

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-04-2014, 12:02 AM
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A second vote for the Pachmayr Compacs, especially on one of the Centennial series snubs. The Compacs give a high hold with a place for the little finger. They just felt right the first time I handled a set on a Colt DS2, so I put them on my 640 as soon as I bought it.
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Old 09-04-2014, 12:05 AM
mauiblue mauiblue is offline
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I have a Model 638 Airweight and normally shoot between 7-10 yards with it. Getting my shots to group in a 12 inch paper plate size target is fine with me. If I want more accurate shooting I'll use my Model 686 Plus with 4 inch barrel and go out farther.

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Old 09-04-2014, 12:26 AM
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I made some snap caps by inserting small pieces of leather in the primer pockets of some empty brass. I dry fire my 642 a lot. Even though S&W says it's ok to "snap" this weapon, I don't like to do it. Just me!
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Old 09-04-2014, 10:56 AM
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A J Frame Revolver (even a 2" bbl.) should be quite accurate and at 7 yards and should be capable of printing at least a 2" group with +P ammo. J Frame revolvers are no less inherently accurate (unless there is a problem with it) but they are much more difficult to master because of their smaller size and lighter weight = more felt recoil. What is required to master a J Frame is LOTS of practice! Start off with standard 158 grain loads or mild hand loads and work you way up to SD ammo.

An instructor can show you basic shooting skills, but to master a Snubby it does take time, dedication and lots of ammo.

Look at the good side............. Once you master a 2" Snubby, you will be a much more accomplished shooter with other revolvers too!

Last edited by chief38; 09-04-2014 at 10:57 AM.
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Old 09-04-2014, 12:07 PM
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For a good tutorial try: The Snubby Revolver by Ed Lovette. A must read for anyone carrying a snubnose.
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Old 09-04-2014, 12:14 PM
macktheknife macktheknife is offline
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Another suggestion to think about goes along with sgt. Peck take a buddy with you shooting and have him or her load your gun for you with leaving a select few fired cases in and work on your anticipation of the shot. It helped me a lot. I also have a 640 but it is a dash so I carry .357 in it but practicing I usually use .38 semi wadcutters. I tried several types of grips on mine and I found the hogue grips designed for the centennial/bodyguard work the best for me. I cant remember what model they are right now but I found them on amozon. They have the full pinky grip and have a plastic clip like thing that holds them on at the bottom. They supposedly have a recoil buffer in the palm area that even makes my speer gold dots quite manageable and even fun to shoot. They arent as great for conceal carry but I carry iwb instead of pocket so it is great for me. Good luck and with enough practice youll be blown away how accurate a snubby can be. Also if you have some extra deep pockets I can't recommend enough some crimson trace grips. My wife has them on her 442 and I practice dry firing all the time with it. It also helped me a lot with my trigger control and keeping shots on target.
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Old 09-04-2014, 12:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shouldazagged View Post
A second vote for the Pachmayr Compacs, especially on one of the Centennial series snubs. The Compacs give a high hold with a place for the little finger. They just felt right the first time I handled a set on a Colt DS2, so I put them on my 640 as soon as I bought it.
I agree with using Pachmayr compact grips. With the factory boot grips, the broadsides of barns were safe. The Pach's really helped with my accuracy.
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Old 09-04-2014, 12:21 PM
macktheknife macktheknife is offline
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If you want to try a set of compacs ill send em to you for the cost of shipping in a usps flat rate box. Just pm me if interested.
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Old 09-04-2014, 10:14 PM
Dark Knight Dark Knight is offline
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If you like the Pachmayr Compacs give their new Pachmayr Diamond Pro grips a try. I got a pair for my 649 Bodyguard and really like the shape and feel.
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Old 09-04-2014, 10:26 PM
9mmsubgun-m11 9mmsubgun-m11 is offline
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A package of A-Zoom snap caps will go a long way towards perfecting your trigger control.
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Old 09-04-2014, 10:32 PM
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I have the crimson trace 305's, how do they compare to the Pachmayr's?
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Old 09-04-2014, 10:52 PM
H2H H2H is offline
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Thank you! I appreciate all of your responses and wisdom. I am encouraged enough to stick with it.

Where can you find such good people these days that are willing to help you resolve your problems by sending you grips for no cost except shipping??? Answer: here

Thank you again & if anything else comes to mind... Keep it coming.
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Old 09-04-2014, 11:47 PM
mrpeepers mrpeepers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by macktheknife View Post
If you want to try a set of compacs ill send em to you for the cost of shipping in a usps flat rate box. Just pm me if interested.
Please send a set of Compacs as offered
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Old 09-04-2014, 11:51 PM
macktheknife macktheknife is offline
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Ive only got one set from trying them out. My lgs has this huge wooden chest they call the treasure box and its full of random firearms stuff and I found those in there for like 3 bucks so I offered them to the OP. but if he doesnt pm me about them id be glad to send them elsewhere.
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Old 09-05-2014, 12:04 AM
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I don't claim to be Jeff Cooper or Ed Lovette but if you're in Dallas I'll be glad to let you shoot any of my Js or K snubs and since I'm an instructor and supposedly know what I'm doing we can get you pretty well along.

The real key with snubbies is one handed shooting - two handed you'll master far faster than one handed. Sadly, one handed is very likely what you'll use in a self defense situation. It just is....it ain't TV, and none of us are Raylan Givens (lead character on TV's Justified, starring Timothy Olyphant - quickest draw since the Lone Ranger!).

***GRJ***
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:53 AM
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What Chief38 said !

In addition to reading Lovette , also read Grant Cunningham.

I will pass along what I learned from observation : On a typical qualification COF , going from a K frame to a J frame , will lead to a group ( pattern ?) Size of at least 50% larger , often aproaching double. If a shooter typically chews the X ring with normal revolver, then will still do respectably with a J frame. If a shooter is kinda average ( mid 80% score ) , they will drop to around a 30% score. ie lots of shots not just missing generous human sized outline , but also missing the paper entirely.

If you take as fixed the use of a J frame , and vary the grips for maximum comfort/ control, then Compacs are a good choice. BUT if you set the parameters the other way around a K frame) with Boot Grips will be about the same , or smaller than oversize J grips. And I can shoot a 2in K Frame way better than a J frame.

A J frame with Magna or Boot grips is superior for pocket or ankle carry. For IWB or OWB , I'd rather have a 2in) K frame .
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Old 09-05-2014, 04:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duke77togo View Post
I suggestion checking out:

Michael de Bethencourt, snubtraining.com | Home

Claude Werner, Teaching the Snub Nose Revolver | tacticalprofessor

Hope this helps.
These two gentlemen would be VERY good choices. So would Craig Douglas. His ECQC course would provide a very good lesson for those carrying a short barreled revolver.
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Old 09-05-2014, 07:44 AM
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These new Hogue Tamer grips are only designed for Centennial-style J-Frames. They do not fit Bodyguards. I have these on my 640's, 642 and 442. They are cushioned where it counts to absorb recoil. The plastic plug at the bottom serves two purposes, to take the grip on and off and to provide a non-snag surface for pocket draw.
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Old 09-05-2014, 09:12 AM
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For shooting and concealability the CTC 405 grips can't be beat.


20140721_092358 by Slick_Rick77, on Flickr

Excuse the lint, but it's usually covered in it.

I can shoot roughly fist sized groups at 20 yards, a couple inches at 15, tight clusters at seven, and can keep 'em in a pie plate sized group as fast as I can pull the trigger.

As for trigger control, that takes practice and technique. It helps to have much of your control in the off hand, as that reduces the side to side movement as the trigger is pulled.

I can just about shoot my little J as well as anything I've got...it just sees a fraction of the round count.
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Old 09-05-2014, 09:36 AM
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H2H, You have some good suggestions here. If they do not work for you, you can always get a Ruger LCR which is much easier to shoot. I made the switch and never looked back. I still love other S&W revolvers just not J frame triggers.
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:19 AM
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This Hogue grip made a huge difference on my J frame, it`s feel`s almost like a fullsize revolver
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:29 AM
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Practicing with a revolver, especially a snub, can improve your targets with striker fired semi's. I wasn't too happy with my 9mm Shield, and then took my 940 out for a workout and my grouping with my Shield improved considerably. Too much shooting with only a single action (1911) can affect your revolver shooting.
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