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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 04-25-2020, 09:39 AM
skwchock skwchock is offline
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I guess the thrill of semi-autos is waning. I have noticed in ALL the gun magazines that they are writing about the "benefits/advantages" of a revolver, esp. the .38 Special. The latest mags are praising the penetration/stopping power of the .38 Special..its ease of carry, its "point & shoot" with moderate recoil. And its popularity with the "older,mature" citizens who may have difficulty "racking the slide" on a semi-auto. I find it interesting. I have always loved the feel, look and effectiveness of my .38 Special and am glad that others are now rediscovering this, too.
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Old 04-25-2020, 09:43 AM
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I own lots of both Semi-Autos and Revolvers. (And a number of single shots). For fun, I prefer revolvers and it is much easier to keep track of your brass. :-)

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Old 04-25-2020, 10:18 AM
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Despite my enduring love of all-metal S&W semi-autos, I will admit that I get a special thrill and almost giddy sense of happiness out of scoring a really nice condition vintage (pre-IL/pre-MIM) S&W revolver. I've been pretty fortunate lately in that regard, but they keep getting harder and harder to find in the high condition that I desire. I lost one just yesterday on GB, but not due to being over-bid. I lost it because shops in MA are closed down tight by our anti-2A AG lady so no way to take a timely delivery.

For now it's local F-T-F sales only or Fuggedaboutit.
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Old 04-25-2020, 10:20 AM
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I dedicated all of 2019 to a 66–1. I reckoned that shooting only DA might improve my trigger discipline.

Not sure it did any good but it sure was fun.
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Old 04-25-2020, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
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Despite my enduring love of all-metal S&W semi-autos, I will admit that I get a special thrill and almost giddy sense of happiness out of scoring a really nice condition vintage (pre-IL/pre-MIM) S&W revolver. I've been pretty fortunate lately in that regard, but they keep getting harder and harder to find in the high condition that I desire. I lost one just yesterday on GB, but not due to being over-bid. I lost it because shops in MA are closed down tight by our anti-2A AG lady so no way to take a timely delivery.

For now it's local F-T-F sales only or Fuggedaboutit.
I'm with you on that. For pure enjoyment, there is a special place in my heart for the revolver.

I'm glad some of the new generation of shooters is catching on.
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Old 04-25-2020, 10:56 AM
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You just cannot have the class and pleasure of a revolver with a bottom feeder.

Now I have plenty of semi autos even one made of Tupperware so send the ''Hate mail"
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Old 04-25-2020, 11:04 AM
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I'm on a revolver kick myself, reexperiencing them all over again. I did it because I wanted to shoot much larger calibers in a price range that wouldn't break the bank...oh, and I'm getting tired of chasing down my brass.
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Old 04-25-2020, 11:15 AM
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My primary carry guns are a 1963 two inch round butt S&W Model 12-2 with a Tyler T-Grip loaded with standard pressure Winchester "Defend" .38 Special 130 grain hollow points and a 1976 four inch square butt S&W Model 65-1 with a BK Grip adapter.loaded with Speer "Short Barrel" .357 Magnum 135 grain hollow points. These are what I carried when I retired in August 2018. They served me then and serve me now.

I gave my blued 1982 three inch round butt S&W Model 13-3 to my son-in-law.

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Old 04-25-2020, 11:29 AM
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I totally agree. That's why my stimulus purchase was a S&W 327 2" revolver. Plan on using it in my carry rotation along with my Sig P365SAS.

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Old 04-25-2020, 11:37 AM
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I doubt revolver shooting is increasing to a degree that could be termed anywhere close to a "comeback". Most younger shooters have no experience with revolvers and aren't likely to develop a yearning for them.
I base this on the frequent weekday trips I've been making to a private gun club range for the last ten years or so. I don't recall the last time I saw a revolver shooter. From cursory glances, I would guess that most shooters use striker polymer-frame guns and shoot up very close, from three yards to fifteen. Very seldom will one of these persons shoot on the twenty-five yard range. Maybe the revolver shooters come out on weekends when I'm not there.

As for gun articles on the .38 Special, there are (like Jack O'Connor said) only about a dozen topics one can write about when it comes to guns. Everything else is pretty much a spinoff variation of one of the twelve.

Just when someone thinks there cannot possibly be room for another 9mm handgun, a new one appears and people read about it and buy it even if it offers virtually nothing (or even less) over similar guns that have long been in production. Sort of like the 1200 (that figure is probably no longer accurate) commercial hot sauces and salsas that are made in Texas, there has always been room for one more - maybe, until now.

Nothing wrong with the .38 Special; I'd much rather read about it than another 9mm gun or ammo creation.
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Old 04-25-2020, 11:47 AM
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The innards of my gun safe tells me they never left. Except for a few Hi Powers it's very round in there.
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Old 04-25-2020, 11:48 AM
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I have been alive a long time and I have witnessed a revolver comeback off and on for the last 60 years. I believe their current popularity stems from the fact 99% of them are all metal. Polymer guns do not have a soul.
The next generation "comeback" will be when people recognize the fact the revolver and the shotgun will be the last two standing in the attacks from the gun grabbing politicians.
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Old 04-25-2020, 11:55 AM
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I have been alive a long time and I have witnessed a revolver comeback off and on for the last 60 years. I believe their current popularity stems from the fact 99% of them are all metal. Polymer guns do not have a soul.
The next generation "comeback" will be when people recognize the fact the revolver and the shotgun will be the last two standing in the attacks from the gun grabbing politicians.
"Polymer guns do not have a soul" is a pretty good description. I've never had one, maybe because they're a bit too basic. I'll bet they work well as a "basic" tool, however, sort of like a hammer or a screwdriver.
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Old 04-25-2020, 12:11 PM
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Most younger shooters wouldn't touch a magazine, only electronic communication interests them. Magazines and the revolver talk and ads in them are for us. Polymer guns have a "soul" if you spend as much time connecting with them. I only have an S&W M&P9 1.0000 so far, but it is a great pistol. If I stay ambulatory, I may get a Glock 17 and M&P45 2.0 when I grow up. I agree they do not evoke memories of our youth, so if that is that soul is, or for any number of reasons, I may be wrong. I recently shot at a buddy's step son's gun club and of the two dozen or so young folks there, there was not a metal handgun or revolver in sight but mine. I was asked about my antiques. I suspect that we proud few are the last large group of revolver devotees. Revolvers are great, but shooting S&W semiauto's is no less fun. There are few bad days at the range. It's all good. Looking forward to getting back to the range.

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Old 04-25-2020, 12:19 PM
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I like em’ all. The classic build of a good revolver, the same with a ,usually, all metal semi-auto and the utility and capacity of the newer “ plastic” choices.
I’m like that with boats also. I like sail and power boats.
I’ve found that to be rare. It’s usually one or the other.
I think the number of new wheel guns and their increased capacity have spurred the recent interest.
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Old 04-25-2020, 12:23 PM
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I think there's been an upswing in the popularity of the revolver for the past few years, but I'm not sure I'd go so far as to identify it as a "comeback."

S&W and Ruger have been coming out with new models or variations (Ruger probably moreso than S&W), aside from their 642/442/640 and LCR, respectively, models being popular. Colt has been bringing back some of their revolvers. Kimber has been having success with their revolvers. I think RIA has a revolver or two out, as well.

At the same time, I'd imagine that semi-auto sales, especially polymer guns, far outpace revolver sales. I don't have the numbers, so I could be wrong, but I doubt it.

Just my opinion.
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Old 04-25-2020, 12:31 PM
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I share many of the viewpoints already mentioned. I don't hunt, don't compete and gave up IDPA shooting quite a good while ago. I do carry, so that's the only 'practical' aspect of handguns for me--everything else is pure enjoyment of pulling a trigger. Mastering a revolver to shoot it as a carry gun isn't going to ever happen for me, but as a range gun, few things are more enjoyable for me now.

There's something about revolvers in general I find so goofy-primitive and obsolete in very concept, I wonder why I'd own one. But I own three and when they go bang, I know why I own them and love them. The mass, low capacity, gas leakage and precision mechanics all seem to disappear as anachronism, and reappear as art form--demanding a certain genuine appreciation and respect.

I enjoy sitting by the fireplace admiring my 629 and buffing it a bit, feeling it click shut and rotate into place--with the same satisfaction that some might get from opening and closing a Browning Citori. I really can't do that much with my M&Ps. Not a piece of cast plastic or a stamping to be found. A heft and density that, in the world of firearms and by itself, at one time conveyed a sense of quality machined workmanship.

I keep saying "I now have the last revolver I need to buy", but I know that can't be true, as there's no 454 Casull to be found anywhere in the house. So, just one more, then I'm done with the whole wheelgun phase.

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Old 04-25-2020, 12:32 PM
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What was old is new again. My interest in revolvers is returning. Currently on the hunt for a Smith model 25.
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Old 04-25-2020, 12:37 PM
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^^^
Get a 460!
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:01 PM
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Ya know, I took that Glock apart, and I’ll be d***ed... there’s metal in it! A lot!!!
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:10 PM
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They never left.......IMHO
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:15 PM
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Resurgence of revolvers is, IMHO, mainly due to two reasons. An increase in interest in handgun hunting and an increased interest in target shooting, strikly for fun. I think the thrill of going to the range and dumping double stack mag after double stack mag at 7 yards is dying. I think with the increase in interest of reloading, the benefits of not chasing revolver brass, and being able to reload the typically more expensive revolver factory ammo is also a plus. What I see more and more is those younger folks with a new revolver shooting for accuracy at 20-25 yards nowadays. Where 50 rounds lasts a lot longer outta a wheel gun than a bottom feeder. Used to be, if you saw someone in the deer woods with a handgun, it was a rarity and it was as a back-up or secondary weapon. Nowadays is quite common to see someone with blaze orange on, with only a handgun with them. Most generally it's a revolver. There has been so many newer models aimed specifically for hunting medium to large game as compared to the past. There are some things revolvers just do better and folks are coming around to that. While I doubt that revolver sales will ever outnumber pistol sales again, I truly doubt the platform is going anywhere soon.
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:19 PM
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Many are discovering or rediscovering the joys of a fine revolver which is a great thing. We have been seeing that trend personally for a while.
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:37 PM
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The new gun buyers of the past 20 years are young guys. Their influence is video games and action movies. That's where they learned about guns and what their appreciation of guns is based on. Initially, as they dug into the gun culture, they stayed close to those early influences . . . thus the emphasis on tactical stylings and the popularity of 3-gun shooting. As others have said, after awhile that gets old and they start to expand their interests.

Nothing would do more for revolver popularity than a few really popular 1960s/'70s-era cop movies or video games.
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:59 PM
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I always carry and shoot Revolvers. For some reason I liked them best. I’ve had a few semi autos but, they just never did it for me. If I was in Combat or Law Enforcement the ammo capacity would be needed but, a Civilian carrying a revolver or Two and reloads works for me.
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skwchock View Post
I guess the thrill of semi-autos is waning. I have noticed in ALL the gun magazines that they are writing about the "benefits/advantages" of a revolver, esp. the .38 Special. The latest mags are praising the penetration/stopping power of the .38 Special..its ease of carry, its "point & shoot" with moderate recoil. And its popularity with the "older,mature" citizens who may have difficulty "racking the slide" on a semi-auto. I find it interesting. I have always loved the feel, look and effectiveness of my .38 Special and am glad that others are now rediscovering this, too.
Personally I don't think the thrill or demand of semi-autos is waning. It's probably more accurate to say that manufacturers use gun magazines (electronic or otherwise) to create or enhance demand. Don't get me wrong, I think a .38 Special is a great self-defense round, but I think a semi-auto chambered in .380 ACP or 9mm is just as good if not better. Revolvers are great, but I don't foresee a serious revival in .38 revolvers other than we always want knew "toys".

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Old 04-25-2020, 02:18 PM
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I think that a Model 57, a 36 or 60 and a .22 Kit gun our on my Next Up List.

Right now I have a 17, 617, 19, 66, 27, 53 and 29 in S&W and a Python Colt. Maybe I will sell the Python (still unfired except for proof rounds) and get the other Smiths.

Bob
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:26 PM
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There is no rediscovery of revolvers, they were never lost. Some Yaho is always beating his gums about rediscovering something, shotguns the other day. More than anything else it’s today’s gun writers. A good many of them don’t know anything but plastic pistols and black rifles and the ones that are left don’t know poo from apple butter.
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:28 PM
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It frustrated a poster on one forum that I said I am better with wheelguns so much that he subjected me to a fair amount of abuse. Without having met me, he insisted that I would be better with what he termed more 'efficient' handguns.

I am a better shot with revolvers, and they are what I carry. Usually it is a K-, or L-frame, but I have also carried N- and J-frames and sometimes an old Colt D-frame.
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Old 04-25-2020, 03:56 PM
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Well when I qualify on the HR 218 course I always take my 4” 686. The instructor always asks if I brought that piece of 19th century technology.
I always answer yes and smile.


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Old 04-25-2020, 03:58 PM
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Revolvers outnumber semi-autos 3:1 in my safe...
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Old 04-25-2020, 05:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gerhard1 View Post
It frustrated a poster on one forum that I said I am better with wheelguns so much that he subjected me to a fair amount of abuse. Without having met me, he insisted that I would be better with what he termed more 'efficient' handguns.

I am a better shot with revolvers, and they are what I carry. Usually it is a K-, or L-frame, but I have also carried N- and J-frames and sometimes an old Colt D-frame.
Don’t feel bad, I had similar go round the other day with a self appointed expert. Best thing to do is drop it and ignore them, they won’t.
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Old 04-25-2020, 05:41 PM
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I sure hope the young'uns start appreciating revolvers. One day (no time soon) I'll need to sell mine. I'll need some hungry buyers.
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Old 04-25-2020, 05:51 PM
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Most of us grew up watching the Lone Ranger, Bonanza, Palladin, etc. Two men walked into the street, draw and fire, one man fell and the other walked away. All we wanted for Xmas was that 'pearl' handled bright sixgun and holster, and never lost our love for a fine revolver, hence the safes full of them.
Majority of today's younger generations have grown up on absurdly violent video games and action movies, in which everyone sprays endless rounds from hi-cap handguns and auto rifles, with endless deaths per shootout. The featured guns themselves just tools for the violence.
If you asked the folks on this forum if they could only own one gun, it would likely be a favored Smith.357 4" that might be decades old, or took decades to find.
For the younger crowds, it would likely be a Glock 19 with an extended mag, available everywhere.
No, the revolver isn't making a comeback, it just has staying power for those still here, still loving them.
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Old 04-25-2020, 06:50 PM
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This is GREAT news, if true! In fact, the uh... several, revolvers in my safe are celebrating the fact that they have not yet been confined to the dust bin of history like their owners (#COVID-19 vs. old farts). They are probably breeding in there. My daughter, who is set to inherit a bunch of 19th century technology has declared that these guns are NOT TO BE SOLD! I'm good with that. For example, no Glock will ever be allowed to speak to this Model of 1950 in 38-44. For the sake of full disclosure, I actually own one of the polymer striker fired things and it (9mm Shield) is pretty much OK, if lacking a soul is OK.
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Old 04-25-2020, 07:03 PM
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Default Revolvers

Last 3 guns i bought were revolvers. I have glocks, Berettas and a couple 1911's but I still love shooting revolvers. When you get it down, you find they are real accurate. 9 times out of 10 when I carry its a revolver.
I do think younger shooters are a semi culture (I am 56) but I also think there is a renewed interest in a good revolver
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Old 04-25-2020, 07:16 PM
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Default It Depends on Who You Are

Law enforcement needs the firepower that semi-autos bring to the scene. When cops carried revolvers, there were too many cases of officers shooting a gun dry, then getting executed before they could reload.

While my sources are limited to what I hear on the news, I'm not aware of a private citizen shooting a gun empty, reloading and needing to continue firing. So yes, the revolver has its place and the majority of incidents will be solved with just a few rounds.

Nevertheless, although I have a 3" round butt Model 65 that I love, my carry guns are semi-autos. they can be reloaded in a flash if necessary and they are more comfortable in an IWB holster.

As for stoppages, assuming factory ammunition, most stoppages I witness at the range are user caused due to lack of training in proper gun handling. But, when a revolver suffers a stoppage, you're usually left with an expensive projectile to throw at your adversary.
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Old 04-25-2020, 07:36 PM
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So the gun rags are running out of ideas to talk about?

Reinventing the wheel(gun) I suppose.
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Old 04-25-2020, 07:40 PM
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JMO......gun companies touted automatics for high capacity and new innovations. I really think it was more ease of manufacturing, cheaper to make and higher profits. Revolvers take more machine time to make and have to sell for a higher price to make their margins work. Just to guess I would say you could produce more automatics in a work shift then you could make a revolver.


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Old 04-25-2020, 07:40 PM
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I asked my LGS why they didn't have revolvers. They said they can't keep them in stock. As soon as one comes in it gets sold.
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Old 04-25-2020, 08:01 PM
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Just happens I have an equal number of each. Last bought was a revolver, I don't prefer one mechanism to the other.
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Old 04-25-2020, 08:31 PM
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Really never lost interest in revolvers. I pretty much have the metal Smith semi-auto collection taken care of and filling in the holes in the revolver collection now.
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Old 04-25-2020, 09:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drm50 View Post
Don’t feel bad, I had similar go round the other day with a self appointed expert. Best thing to do is drop it and ignore them, they won’t.
How true. I stopped responding to him on that forum, and when I started back on this forum he said that he heard that I was on here and that if I didn't stop spreading false information here he'd have to register on this forum and straighten me out because I was 'dangerous'.

I googled his handle and found that he has problems on many different gun fora.
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Old 04-26-2020, 12:11 AM
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Originally Posted by elm_creek_smith View Post
My primary carry guns are a 1963 two inch round butt S&W Model 12-2 with a Tyler T-Grip loaded with standard pressure Winchester "Defend" .38 Special 130 grain hollow points and a 1976 four inch square butt S&W Model 65-1 with a BK Grip adapter.loaded with Speer "Short Barrel" .357 Magnum 135 grain hollow points. These are what I carried when I retired in August 2018. They served me then and serve me now.

I gave my blued 1982 three inch round butt S&W Model 13-3 to my son-in-law.

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Old 04-26-2020, 08:16 AM
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the gun world goes through many phases. I think were finally leaving the tactical era,and possibly heading back to revolvers. Everything old is new again
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Old 04-26-2020, 10:40 AM
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The vast majority of people who bought/buy firearms are doing so for recreational purposes. Or, at least they used to. The firearms then tend to get warm, fuzzy memories attached and seem to have "extra" properties, possibly that "soul" mentioned several times.

A couple of years ago I ran across a version of a revolver I'd first seen and coveted in about 1970, a round butt K frame with a 4" heavy barrel. The price was right, I needed a project and it came home. At my age I appreciate not having to pick up brass. Shooting it doesn't remind me of work.

OTOH, those who have firearms for different reasons tend to regard them as tools. Like the hammer noted above. You might come to have considerable affection for that special tool, but the associations may not be quite as rosy as memories of a fine fall day in the woods.

In the end, they all are, in fact tools.

And for the gent in post #37, a lot more defensive firearms than you might think get shot empty. They might not get reloaded because the user never thought they'd need to and didn't have a reload.

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Old 04-26-2020, 05:29 PM
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I've been shooting wheel guns for the past 30 years and during that time, have tried auto's just twice. of the two auto's, only my Colt 1911 remains but just this week at the range, I was the only one shooting revolvers. Every other mother's son was blasting away at less than ten (10) feet with an auto. And 100% of the range staff has an auto strapped to his/her hip so it seems the younger crowd still leans toward auto's.
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Old 04-26-2020, 05:34 PM
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Due to my fire in 2018 a lot of my gorgeous S&W revolvers (all K frame .38s) got water stained - not fire marked but water got into the safe. I couldn't look at them. So I sold them at my LGS as shooters. They did NOT last long.

And I still have more revolvers than automatic pistols and I keep revolvers around for home defense as much as pistols and I carry a J frame more than a small auto pistol.

I didn't realize that revolvers needed to "come back". People need to come back to revolvers!
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:27 PM
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Exclamation Vogue

I have always liked S&W Revolvers and have been known to
dabble in Rugers, Uberti, and U.S. Fire Arms.

I am really comfortable with Revolvers. I shoot a Revolver far
better than a Big Bore Auto Pistol. In fact I have one Ruger
SR1911 Full Size 45ACP. It's been proven more accurate than I
can shoot it.

I do know when at the Indoor Range, I'm usually the only one
shooting Revolvers.

The Range Safety Officers say I'm about the only one that
shoots past 7 yards.

I usually tell them "That's because I only have Real Guns",
7 yards with a Revolver is way to easy and with my 1911 is a
stupid distance. They know that I like and shoot Revolvers.

To say "Revolvers are making a come back" I can't say that for
sure.
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Old 04-26-2020, 07:33 PM
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I grew up shooting both, and will continue to shoot (and carry) both until I leave. However...

My revolvers outnumber my autos by about 4 to 1.

I walked into my LGS one day, and the gunsmith who was working there at the time (a young guy) said, "Hey, it's the revolver guy!"
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