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S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present All NON-PINNED Barrels, the L-Frames, and the New Era Revolvers


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Old 01-29-2015, 03:19 PM
JohnPhitz JohnPhitz is offline
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John Phitz here ~ newbie member.
Addicted to the Forum!!
Wanting to add either 649 or 642 Performance model (& don't vilify me but have also been interested in SP101 357 dao but hear that trigger & trigger pull is rough).
Plan on carrying (+ for 642) but really would prefer all stainless.
For what it is worth for handguns I currently have Springfield XD-4, S&W 9MM shield, S&W 22LR & Charter Arms Shamrock (which I am getting rid of ~ was 1st good taste of wheel gun but not impressed with quality etc.).
Look forward to hearing back from all you.

God Bless & warm regards to All ~ JPhitz
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:45 PM
wolverine wolverine is offline
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Afternoon JohnPhitz;

I can't speak to the 649 or 642 Performance model questions as I have neither.

I can (sort of) address the SP 101 part though.

What you heard on the trigger pull is partially correct-- The SP 101 has smaller trigger/hammer spacing & the geometry is different so it is a bit more difficult to get a lower-pound smooth double action trigger pull.

But it can be done with good success if you are knowledgeable & understand what it takes to get a good SP 101 double action trigger pull (more difficult /more work than on a S&W but not impossible).

I have a couple of SP 101's that I have some trigger re-work time into & I doubt you could find fault with either.

You also need to qualify what you read as the SP 101 .22 cal. is a real bugger to get a low poundage double action pull on. Smooth & precise yes, but low poundage is very difficult as some of the modern .22's are real devils to get to fire if the SP 101 (.22) double action is lowered much below 9 pounds.

You can get (or make) a little longer firing pin & that will allow lowering the SP 101 22 a bit lower but seeing as the firing pin on the 22 is not a center hit ,then, any dry fires at all will ding up the rear of cylinder.
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:51 PM
jonwanner jonwanner is offline
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Not certain of your question. The 649 is stainless, single/double action and I believe chambered for .357 though from what I Hear most find magnum loads in a j frame unpleasant. The 642 is an aluminum frame air weight chambered for 38+p. Dao. I believe the performance center model is cut for moon clips. For carry I like the air weight and carry a 637 myself. I and others have had problems with the finish on the air weights but it's a tool not a show piece.

If you wanted to shoot 357 mag regularly I would recommend the sp101 as the more substantial gun tames recoil a bit. I think an sp101 will be my next revolver as my wife fancies it for her ccw weapon.


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Old 01-29-2015, 04:12 PM
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If you're someone who buys and sells regularly, a 357 model will be worth more down the line, and it gives you the choice of what to shoot. If you're looking for something lightweight, the 642 is a great carry gun.
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Old 01-29-2015, 04:27 PM
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I've had all, or similar.

649 (640-1 .357 and 49 38spl for me) You didn't specify if 357 or 38 so here's my similar 2: excellent trigger on 640, good for iwb, owb, and pocket although it might be a little heavy for pocket carry for some. Great all around gun and .357 is not unpleasant...for me at least. This includes factory and hand loads. 49 is one of my all time favorite models. If it came in 357 I'd be all over one. Mine shot great and was more fun than the 640 at the range because I could plink around in single action. LOVE the hump backs.

642 (had a 642-2 and now a 442-1 for me): super light weight. Good for all the carry options as above but pocket is a little nicer with this gun. 38's and 38+p all shoot well. Smooth but heavy trigger on both of my specimens.

Sp101 (sp101 2.25" for me): robust little gun. I believe it's similar in weight to the 640 I have but it's a little bulkier. Good iwb and owb, but it's bulkyness and spur (mine wasn't bobbed), impede pocket carry some. Shoots .357 with ease with its soft cushy grip. Trigger was not bad but noticeably longer than a s&w. HOWEVER, if you don't have a lot of s&w revolver trigger experience a ruger might feel pretty good. Not that it's bad, it's just different. And it's easy to get used to if you shoot it anyway.

These are just my humble opinions and I'm sticking with them. Your personal experience might be different. By the way, I'm looking for another sp101.

Edit: ya know, what a good time for some pics!









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Old 01-29-2015, 04:30 PM
Irn-Bru Irn-Bru is offline
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I have had all three and hands down would recommend the 649. The 642 is a nice carry gun, but IMO wasn't fun to shoot. The 649 is a pleasure to shoot using .38 special and actually not bad firing regular. 357 loads. I carry is a Barsony holster and it's an easy gun to carry. I have the SP101 but it never gets carried, too heavy for me. If your looking for a good carry piece then go with the 649. If your looking for a shooter then I'd side with the SP101.
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Old 01-29-2015, 04:41 PM
Hapworth Hapworth is offline
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Do you mean the 642 "Enhanced Action" which is from the Performance Center, or 642 Pro, which is a production gun? I'm not aware of a 642 Performance model...

Presuming you mean the 642 Pro, I'd choose that over a 649. I use, enjoy and believe in moon clips, don't need or recommend single action in the kinds of shoots deep carry J-frame snubs are made for, don't need .357 capability in a carry snub, and prefer my S&Ws without the internal lock.

The 649 is a fine firearm; the 642 Pro is more suited for me.

If you decide on the 642 Pro, consider its twin, the 442 Moon Clip, identical but in black and many say a tougher finish.

If stainless is a requirement but you otherwise like the 642 Pro's features, look into the 640 Pro; all stainless, enclosed hammer, moon clips, no lock and night sights.

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Old 01-29-2015, 05:51 PM
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The 642/442 is a great pocket or ankle carry due to light weight and is pleasant to shoot with most loads.

The 649 makes a better waistband carry and is controllable with magnums. The single action pulls on most is extremely good.

Both is the best answer, of course.

20150109_135938 by Slick_Rick77, on Flickr
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Old 01-29-2015, 05:55 PM
JohnPhitz JohnPhitz is offline
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Big hearty THANKS to my forum Brothers who took the time to reply!
My aplogizes for not being a tad clearer on my wants/needs(?) so here are some additonal notes and comments:
The 649 and SP101 357s, I have never fired one so at least initially I would use 38/38+s; having the ability to go to train and become possibly comfortable a 357 load interests me a lot. Of course if it works out to be an 80/20 split on the different loadsis it not sensabile/practicalto go the 357 route?
As that I have only been shooting for about 5 years, just like the idea of the greater forgiveness of an all steel but am not opposed to a light weight...pretty confident that my Charter Arms does not set a great example of what a light weight can be.
Re: the 642 DAO, Davidson's has an exclusive of a "Performance Center" model their item #178025 that looks pretty sweet.

Wolverine: Thanks. Sounds like with practice (and maybe some tuning) Ruger SP101 357 might deserve some greater consideration? You mention .22 in your reply though, and my interest was in the 357 ~ any other thoughts given that?
Jonwanner: Thanks. Was looking for professional input; this certainly will not be the last gun I get my query was more for a great every day DAO...and the extra wieght of s.s....was just that,tohave some extra weight behind the gun.
F75gunslinger: Thanks. I am not one who buys and sells regularly ~ so far I am just a buyer!...but value is always an important consideration to me and your point is something I had not considered ~ figured any S&W holds its value pretty well (SP101 too from what I have heard)
Boogsawaste: Thanks for your humble opinions (& pics). Have ZERO experience with S&W revolver trigger experience.
Irn-Bru: Thanks. Great input...for some reason I am concerned that if I go SP101 that it might become a range gun which I do not want it to be. Could make it a HD gun but my XD + tactical 12 gauge aren't bad for that. Totally commited to investing the time of carrying so as gun becomes one with me but wonder if that still might workout for me.
Hapworth: Thanks my Man. Yes I meant the 642 Performance Center odel ~ sorry for mis-speak. All your recommendations I have looked into. Stupid question: what do Moon Clips do...never quite comprehended that?

Again heartfelt thanks & appreciation to all from JPhitz (a.k.a. your newest "rookie")
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Old 01-29-2015, 05:56 PM
JohnPhitz JohnPhitz is offline
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Big hearty THANKS to my forum Brothers who took the time to reply!
My aplogizes for not being a tad clearer on my wants/needs(?) so here are some additonal notes and comments:
The 649 and SP101 357s, I have never fired one so at least initially I would use 38/38+s; having the ability to go to train and become possibly comfortable a 357 load interests me a lot. Of course if it works out to be an 80/20 split on the different loadsis it not sensabile/practicalto go the 357 route?
As that I have only been shooting for about 5 years, just like the idea of the greater forgiveness of an all steel but am not opposed to a light weight...pretty confident that my Charter Arms does not set a great example of what a light weight can be.
Re: the 642 DAO, Davidson's has an exclusive of a "Performance Center" model their item #178025 that looks pretty sweet.

Wolverine: Thanks. Sounds like with practice (and maybe some tuning) Ruger SP101 357 might deserve some greater consideration? You mention .22 in your reply though, and my interest was in the 357 ~ any other thoughts given that?
Jonwanner: Thanks. Was looking for professional input; this certainly will not be the last gun I get my query was more for a great every day DAO...and the extra wieght of s.s....was just that,tohave some extra weight behind the gun.
F75gunslinger: Thanks. I am not one who buys and sells regularly ~ so far I am just a buyer!...but value is always an important consideration to me and your point is something I had not considered ~ figured any S&W holds its value pretty well (SP101 too from what I have heard)
Boogsawaste: Thanks for your humble opinions (& pics). Have ZERO experience with S&W revolver trigger experience.
Irn-Bru: Thanks. Great input...for some reason I am concerned that if I go SP101 that it might become a range gun which I do not want it to be. Could make it a HD gun but my XD + tactical 12 gauge aren't bad for that. Totally commited to investing the time of carrying so as gun becomes one with me but wonder if that still might workout for me.
Hapworth: Thanks my Man. Yes I meant the 642 Performance Center odel ~ sorry for mis-speak. All your recommendations I have looked into. Stupid question: what do Moon Clips do...never quite comprehended that?

Again heartfelt thanks & appreciation to all from JPhitz (a.k.a. your newest "rookie")
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Old 01-29-2015, 06:17 PM
wolverine wolverine is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnPhitz;
Clip--

Wolverine: Thanks. Sounds like with practice (and maybe some tuning) Ruger SP101 357 might deserve some greater consideration?
You mention .22 in your reply though, and my interest was in the 357 ~ any other thoughts given that?
--clip

Evening John

My reference to the SP101 .22 was not in the form of a gun recommendation, it was meant to caution you about what you read about SP 101 triggers
being heavy.
Just be sure that what you read or hear about SP 101 is referencing the center fire SP 101 & not the .22 SP 101.
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Old 01-29-2015, 06:26 PM
Hapworth Hapworth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnPhitz View Post
...Hapworth: Thanks my Man. Yes I meant the 642 Performance Center odel ~ sorry for mis-speak. All your recommendations I have looked into. Stupid question: what do Moon Clips do...never quite comprehended that?..
Moon clips allow you to load and unload your rounds simultaneously -- they're all on the clip (it's like a magazine for revolvers). Fastest load/unload there is; revolver shoots fine without 'em, too.
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Old 01-29-2015, 07:07 PM
Georgia1911 Georgia1911 is offline
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You mentioned preferring all stainless, so you should consider the various 640s as well. I recently acquired a 640 Pro and think it is a really great option.

A few things to keep in mind:
1. Not all 649s are chambered for 357 (same for 640s) if that matters.
2. Some shooters, and I am one, say the DA trigger feel is different for Centennials than SA/DA models. I prefer the trigger on my 640 to my 637, but no one should buy a J frame for its great trigger.
3. Better sights on the 640 Pro, but no one should buy a J frame for its great sights.

Last edited by Georgia1911; 01-29-2015 at 07:16 PM.
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Old 01-29-2015, 08:45 PM
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I have a 649-2 (.38 special) that I bought around 1993. It was the last S&W revolver that I bought new. It is also the only "J" frame I own. Because it is my only one, I can't comment on any other model in that frame size, but IMO it's a great carry gun. I like the snag free hammer shroud with the ability to thumb cock it. I personally have never embraced the need to have such a gun in .357 magnum, and consider my 2 1/2" model 66-1 the perfect package for that caliber. Shoot what you like and like what you shoot. Good luck.
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Old 01-29-2015, 09:09 PM
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Both a Model 642 and .38 Special chambered Model 649 live here.


The Model 642 is so convenient and light which is so important to many who carry. Recoil with good self-defense loads is fairly "enthusiastic." It's double-action only and "hammerless." It's the last new Smith & Wesson revolver I've purchased and I've had it since 1998. I've become disenchanted with it since that time and feel the whole Model 642/442 revolver family is overrated and oversold.


The Model 649 is heavier, not being an alloy-framed revolver but it is just as compact for hiding purposes. It soaks up recoil better. It offers choices. One may shoot it in single-action mode or double-action. I like choices. It still slips in a pocket easily and is snag-free like the Model 642. The Model 649 is the gun that the Model 642 ought to be.

The Ruger SP101 I've shot has the best action of any Ruger double-action revolver I've ever handled. It's still not as nice as a Smith & Wesson gun in my view. It's also a bit clunky for a 5-shot revolver. I'd about as soon hide a 2 1/2-inch Smith & Wesson Model 19 or Model 66 as to bother with the SP 101 and the K-Frame Magnums hold six rounds to the Ruger's five. The K-Frames are not that much larger. I've never seen a real need for an SP 101 with good used 2 1/2-inch K-Frame Magnums available. They're well worth it to seek and acquire.


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Old 01-29-2015, 09:15 PM
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It sounds like this will be a carry gun. So my suggestion is the 642. It's my EDC. There are many that have snubby 357s and load them with 38s or 38+Ps for defense. There are a lot of good reasons for this and there are many who can convincingly argue loading with 357s.Lot's of info on these two choices on this site and scads of others (just search it you'll see a lot). I fall into the load with 38+Ps camp. Since I am using the lighter load I carry the lighter gun because of how it carries. I have carried an SP101. I really like the gun and I feel it is a better range gun. But again I used a 38+P as a defense load so I ended back carrying the 642. I find I can carry it quite comfortably with almost any attire. Of course follow up shots even with 38s in a heavier gun is quicker. For me the lighter weight is worth the trade off.

I love shooting 357s! It sounds like you want to consider getting into that caliber. I would highly suggest renting a medium frame S&W 686 or Ruger GP100 and see what you think. If you really want to enjoy shooting this caliber. It is well worth it to try this out. Yes it will mean more guns and more cost in the long run. But boy is it worth it. One word of caution, wheelguns are very addictive.

Let us know what you decide.
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Old 01-29-2015, 09:27 PM
629shooter 629shooter is offline
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Welcome to the Forum.

You can't really go wrong with either one of them. But, like others have already suggested, check out a 640. Especially, if you would prefer a stainless model.

Another one to take a look at would be the M&P 340. The wider deeper U-notch in the rear paired with the XS front sight make it easier to shoot it fast, and accurately. The finish on the M&P also is superior to the 642 as well. But, it doesn't have that stainless "look."

Good luck.
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Old 01-30-2015, 02:06 AM
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Some great advise here. I'll throw out an idea you may have not considered... a M638.

It would give you the DA/SA cockable hammer of the M649, and the light Airweight frame of the M642. The -2 and latter versions can handle all the +P .38 Spl you'd care to shoot.

The older pre-lock guns (the -2's) were very well made (if you can find one). I'd say equivalent to current PC/Pro guns on smoothness, finish, and fitting.
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Old 01-30-2015, 09:15 PM
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I have many (many) variations of the Humpback 38/49 and Centennial 40/42. That is about all I need to say...they are all great guns with a specific purpose for when I leave the house or keep in a drawer. Buy them both in as many variants as you can afford or come upon!
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Old 01-30-2015, 10:35 PM
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I had the 442-2 and while light weight, found it was pretty brutal to practice with regularly to maintain adequate performance.

Replaced it with a 649-2 that now fills the role of EDC and makes practice enjoyable.

Wife has a Ruger SP 101 that was inherited and primarily fills the role of a nightstand gun for her. The Ruger is built like a tank and has been completely reliable but as mentioned earlier, has a heavier trigger pull (at least in hers)

Just bought the kid a SW 66-2 snub that has the smooth SW trigger I'm used to and is only slightly larger / heavier than the Ruger and adds 1 round.

I still prefer the 649 for carry and practice but I don't think you could go wrong with any you mentioned.
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Old 01-30-2015, 11:44 PM
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[IMG][/IMG]

This is a Performance Center 642 made for Talo. I have owned a stock 642, 442, 640, and now own the 642PC and a 638. Of these guns the 642PC is head and shoulders above the rest, including the Ruger. I had a Security Six years ago and while it is, and the Ruger revolvers now, are built like Tanks I pocket carry and the Airweight 642PC is my best of this group. If you can find a 642PC try it heads up to a stock Ruger or S&W. Day and Night and so will your accuracy.
Just my .02, Frank.
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Old 01-31-2015, 12:22 AM
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John, I live not too far from you (Bisbee) and EDC a 442. It's the most lightweight easy-to-carry snubby I've yet to own and because of this I'll inevitably pick it over my 1911 CMD or my Glock 26.

With a caveat or two: It's not a range gun and it's therefore not fun to shoot for more than fifteen minutes. But it wasn't intended for anything other than close quarters self defense anyway. It's the same as a 642 only black.
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Old 01-31-2015, 01:07 AM
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Add me to the 649 side of the ledger. I have a -1, bought used 4 or 5 years ago. It has become my go to carry piece for my morning "Old Fart" walk. Easy to wear, pleasant to shoot with any reasonable factory or handloaded 38 spc. I like it better than my Model 60 because if I choose to drop it in my sweatshirt or vest pocket there is no snag trying to get it out. Either of your Smith choices would work but I like steel and the extra weight will make it more pleasant as a range gun. GB
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Old 01-31-2015, 11:33 AM
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If you intend to carry (and I mean ALWAYS carry), the clear winner is the 642. Carry it in your front pants (or shorts) pocket in a well-designed pocket holster. End of story.
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Old 01-31-2015, 12:02 PM
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You would be well served to handle the firearms you are considering, as well as some others before buying.

I would encourage you to also handle the M38, 49, 40 and 42 or 042 before you decide.

These older revolvers are decidedly more elegant in my opinion as well as being built on a smaller non magnum frame. Accordingly, they are 38 spcl, not 357.

They feel better in my hand than the larger magnum frame revolvers considering the intended purpose.

I believe any of those older revolvers will hold value better than the ones you mentioned initially.

Of course, they aren't stainless (which matters not at all to me ).

I see no need for a 357 in a j frame so have no interest in the larger magnum frame j.

Just my opinion, of course.
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Old 01-31-2015, 12:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Helderberg View Post
This is a Performance Center 642 made for Talo. I have owned a stock 642, 442, 640, and now own the 642PC and a 638. Of these guns the 642PC is head and shoulders above the rest, including the Ruger. I had a Security Six years ago and while it is, and the Ruger revolvers now, are built like Tanks I pocket carry and the Airweight 642PC is my best of this group. If you can find a 642PC try it heads up to a stock Ruger or S&W. Day and Night and so will your accuracy.
Just my .02, Frank.
Hi Helderberg, can I get .03 from you? I've been tempted by the 642PC at shows, but have held back since I already own standard 642s. What do you find to be the difference? Could the PC have the more refined DA I enjoy on the Wyatt/Deep Cover 637 model?

Kaaskop49
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P.S. I guess, as a certified J-hound, you can already tell I'm looking to buy another J-frame...
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Old 01-31-2015, 01:54 PM
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I have shooting experience with the performance center 642 and it is a great gun, but don't shoot plus p ammo through it the recoil is incredibly painful.
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Old 01-31-2015, 02:31 PM
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I have shooting experience with the performance center 642 and it is a great gun, but don't shoot plus p ammo through it the recoil is incredibly painful.
Know what you're talking about! If you use those factory grips, they could cause a rock to feel pain. Have you changed them out? Similar grips came on other Smith guns I own, and they're all in the boxes!

How about a shooting glove for range work? It's a must for me, given the nerve damage in my shooting hand. Good shooting!

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Old 01-31-2015, 03:36 PM
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kaaskop49: actually the performance center 642 i shot was my uncle's gun i just borrowed it i tried shooting gloves they did not help me.
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Old 01-31-2015, 10:03 PM
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The whole recoil thing is very, and I mean very subjective. I find it ok to shoot a box of 50 .357's with wooden and exposed backstrap grips out of a steel j frame not bad. +p out of an airweight is easy on the hands, for me. However as you can see others will say the 38's out of their airweights hurt like h***. I guess each of us has to go out and see what their threshold is. Oh, and just because I say it isn't bad on my hands to shoot that stuff doesn't mean I regularly do it. I don't like to needlessly beat up on the guns, wether they can take it or not.
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Old 01-31-2015, 10:27 PM
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I tried gloves also and they didn't work either. Even tried golf gloves (open finger tips ergo better trigger feel).

In my opinion NO J-frame snubbies are comfortable to shoot regardless of whether airweight or steel; just lesser degrees of pain. K-frame snubbies are OK but they're heavy and good luck with pocket carry.

But, as many others have written, these are not range guns. They are for personal, close quarters defense. In such a scenario sights, good or bad, are probably irrelevant because either it's dark or you're shooting from the hip (which is something I practice because there may not be time or even space enough to get arms fully extended and take any meaningful aim).

As for the factory grips, whether wood or rubber, If you want to improve both comfort and perhaps aim, try Hogues; they are longer and have finger indents. Other manufacturers make similar styles. Sure, longer grips don't conceal as well as the shorter grips. But they do make shooting a snubby tolerable.
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Old 02-01-2015, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaaskop49 View Post
Hi Helderberg, can I get .03 from you? I've been tempted by the 642PC at shows, but have held back since I already own standard 642s. What do you find to be the difference? Could the PC have the more refined DA I enjoy on the Wyatt/Deep Cover 637 model?

Kaaskop49
Shield #5103

P.S. I guess, as a certified J-hound, you can already tell I'm looking to buy another J-frame...
As I understand it the Wyatt is basically a PC gun without the engraving on the side. I have not had the opportunity to handle them side by side, but I believe they have undergone the same tune-up. If you have the Wyatt then the only difference is probably the closed hammer. Not an authority but I think this is accurate. Also, the Pacy compact grips are good but not as pocket carry friendly. They have a covered backstrap that helps with recoil absorption.
Be safe, Frank.

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Old 02-01-2015, 05:30 PM
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Default My two j's with the compact grips.

[IMG][/IMG]

Hope this helps, Frank.
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Old 10-28-2017, 09:45 PM
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have a 642 enhanced action...love it. any suggestions on lessening recoil pain when practicing-50 to 100 rounds
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Old 10-28-2017, 10:22 PM
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also...suggestions on best holster for IWB for 642
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Old 10-28-2017, 10:59 PM
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The 642 is a great carry weapon. If wanting all steel construction and .357 magnum capability, I'd go with a 640 although I think the 642 is the better bang for the buck and a much better choice if wanting to pocket carry.

The 649 has never made much sense to me. It's neither here nor there and ultimately a bad compromise since single action is of little practical benefit on a gun whose purpose is close-quarter personal defense.

I owned a Ruger SP101 years ago and never warmed up to it. Too heavy and bulky for only 5 rounds and I found the trigger difficult to manage in rapid fire. I promptly sold it and bought a 640 which I eventually traded in for a second 642.
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Old 10-29-2017, 12:07 AM
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For Posts#34&35:
I use a hand-filling aftermarket rubber grip which also covers the back of the frame either from Pachmayr or Hogue. The Pachmayr I reference is a bit easier to remove should you want to go back to the original & smaller stock grip:
Compac Grips | Pachmayr Revolver Grips

Centennial Model - J Frame Revolvers - Grips for Smith & Wesson - Handgun Grips - Hogue Products

There are several other models which I've not had the need to buy & try.

For a good IWB holster for a 642 (doesn't fit my 640-1, however) is the "Klipt" from Blade-Tech.
Klipt J Frame Revolver Holster | Blade-Tech Industries

The "Klipt" works well for me as an "AIWB" worn in front, but can also be used in a 4 o'clock position if desired; right handers only. Every holster maker believes they'll have the just right holster for you and there are several good holsters out there. I've also not had the ability to buy & try every other holster. These work well and I've not had the need to shop for more (right now).

For my similar, but larger 640-1, I bought this Galco AIWB holster (again, can work as an IWB, too), but does rely on one's belt for retention, which is fine, but beware the gun can fall out when removing one's pants for whatever reason.

STOW-N-GO INSIDE THE PANT HOLSTER: Appendix Carry Holsters | Galco Gunleather
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Old 10-29-2017, 02:20 AM
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I carry a 642-2 in my off-side cargo pocket at work with a 4 inch 686-4 in a cruiser holster on my duty belt. My 642-2 has the Apex Duty Spring kit installed and is enthusiastic with +P ammo. It is loaded with Hornady Critical Defense 110 grain +P which is not too hard on the hand. I practice with standard pressure ammo with is not bad at all. Off duty my 642-2 backs up either my 2 inch Model 12-2 Airweight 22 ounce K- frame or my 3 inch 13-3 .357 Magnum. Depending on what Iím doing and where, Iíve been known to carry both the 12-2 and the 13-3. Regardless, I always have the 642-2.

I donít have a .357 Magnum Airweight or Airlite J-frame, and if I do I wonít shoot.357 Magnums in it.




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Old 10-29-2017, 04:29 AM
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I prefer the 649 no dash .38. 90% of the time, this is my carry gun. Great for pocket carry and no peeling finish issues. I know that single action capability is frowned on now days but I like it. The steel frame makes practice tolerable. I have a wide variety of holsters for it. This makes wardrobe choices much easier. I carry two speed strips and have extra ammo stashed in my Jeep and truck.

My wife prefers the 642.

The SP101 is a neat gun. I have two. You can do a pretty decent action job yourself if you watch some Youtube and are careful. The SP101 seems to be very rugged. My problem with the SP101 is that I can carry a pretty serious autoloader for the same weight. If you are a true revolver guy then this doesn't matter. I have pocket carried one but its really too heavy for that.

If you get a .357 snubbie you might want to check out the Remington 125 grain .357 Golden Saber.
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Old 10-29-2017, 04:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmcgilvray View Post
Both a Model 642 and .38 Special chambered Model 649 live here.


The Model 642 is so convenient and light which is so important to many who carry. Recoil with good self-defense loads is fairly "enthusiastic." It's double-action only and "hammerless." It's the last new Smith & Wesson revolver I've purchased and I've had it since 1998. I've become disenchanted with it since that time and feel the whole Model 642/442 revolver family is overrated and oversold.


The Model 649 is heavier, not being an alloy-framed revolver but it is just as compact for hiding purposes. It soaks up recoil better. It offers choices. One may shoot it in single-action mode or double-action. I like choices. It still slips in a pocket easily and is snag-free like the Model 642. The Model 649 is the gun that the Model 642 ought to be.



[URL=http://s74.photobucket.com/user/bryanmcgilvray/media/Album%20II/f0346944_zps7531a72d.jpg.html]
I think you are comparing apples & oranges. The 649 (in 38 special) should be more rightly compared to the 640 (no dash) also in 38 special. I think think the 642/442 are great guns and not over rated at all. They can be tough to shoot for some, but you can't beat them for pocket carry. The 649 and 640 are easier to shoot but can weigh down a pocket.
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