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Old 04-17-2018, 08:09 AM
Buzzsaw Buzzsaw is offline
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Default 329 Airlight,

I'm shopping .44 magnums to shoot mostly reduced loads (.44 Special type) Anyone who owns one of these, please share your feelings, like it, love it, hate it???


The N Frame is a little large for me, so, I'm also looking at the newer 69, 4"
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Old 04-17-2018, 08:51 AM
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safearm safearm is offline
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I have a 4 inch Model 69 and a 3 inch 396 Airlite. The Model 69 is .44 Magnum and the 396 is .44 Special, both on the L frame. I only shoot .44 Special in both of them. The Model 69 is a joy to shoot and carry; it's not as heavy as a N-frame and IMO is very well balanced. The 396 only weighs 22 ounces empty and while it is controllable with .44 Special loads, you know when you have fired it. So while the 396 is much easier to carry for long periods, I find myself carrying the Model 69 much more often.
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Old 04-17-2018, 10:36 AM
Shuz Shuz is offline
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I have owned a 329PD for over 10 years and I love it. I also have a 4-1/4" Mdl 69 and it is a nice revolver also. For ease of shooting I find either pleasant to shoot with 7g of Green Dot or 7g of Trail Boss behind a 220 to 250g cast boolit. Magnum loads like 21g of 2400 and a 250g boolit is quite a handful in either gun.
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Old 04-17-2018, 10:56 AM
Paul105 Paul105 is offline
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I have both 329s and M69s. Have shot both extensively.

The 329s were my all day, every day carry gun for the better part of a decade. These are very specialized platforms. The have a very useful power to weight ratio but due to the weight, sights, and recoil are more difficult to shoot than steel guns. They are also more fragile than steel guns. If shot extensively with moderate to full magnum level ammo, they will require more frequent repair/maintenance. With .44 specials, durability probably isn’t an issue. The Hogue 500 X Frame grips help moderate recoil significantly.

The M69s are more recent additions (bought the first 4 ” gun in Q1 of 2014). Recently, I added the 2 ” version. I’m a big fan of the 5 shot L Frame .44 Mag (Model 69). It is is FOR ME, the perfect revolver platform/cartridge – accurate, powerful, compact and fun to shoot (wild to mild). Equipped with the Hogue 500X frame grips and with the lower bore to grip axis, recoil, even with full on .44 Magnums is quite manageable, stout but not terribly harsh.

Some consider five shots to be a negative, FWIW, it isn’t for me.

If I could have only one handgun, it would be the 4 ” Model 69, although I still carry the 329 when bow hunting elk in big predator country.

Good luck with whatever you choose.


Threads more fun with pictures:


M66-8, M69, M617

Last edited by Paul105; 04-17-2018 at 10:59 AM.
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Old 04-17-2018, 05:52 PM
lscocoa lscocoa is offline
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I have a 329PD and I carry it a lot woods walking and trout fishing . I reload various lite loads with unique,titegroup, and a cowboy action load of trail boss that is just fun to shoot . I do occasionally shoot mags but with light loads it's one of my favorite n-frames ? Don't know yet about the 69 but if you're more comfortable with the k/L frame grip then you might be better off going that way .
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