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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 11-21-2020, 02:36 PM
kenjen kenjen is offline
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Went up to the gun club today to play with my 44 mag ruger red hawk, a guy comes in with a S&W 500 and asked if I wanted to shoot it, I said sure why not. He loaded 5 rounds of Fed. 350gr. JHP's and handed it to me, first thing I noticed was the trigger, really crisp and smooth, second thing was the recoil, an hour later I am finally getting the filling back in my fingers. What a "Beast" of a hand gun...
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Old 11-21-2020, 02:41 PM
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Welcome to the club.
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Old 11-21-2020, 02:42 PM
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Hopefully this was an outdoor range...

Stories abound of .44 Magnums for sale, nearly new and with 44 rounds of ammo left in the box. For model 500s that probably drops to 19 leftovers, because the boxes hold 20 rounds.
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Old 11-21-2020, 02:59 PM
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Which barrel length were you shooting, kenjen?

I've never had trouble with my hands with my 10.5", but even with ear plugs and muffs my ears take a bit of time to recover after an outing. I call it the "deaf maker." Because of that I don't take it out often. I still have great hearing, and I don't want to give that up.

I had a 4" for a short while, but I just didn't see the point.
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Old 11-21-2020, 03:08 PM
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I'm old enough to have learned long ago. When I had the chance to shoot a Scandium 44 Mag I loaded ONE (1) round and let it off. Got the t-shirt, never again. Did the same years later with a full 357 Magnum load in a J frame. I can say I did it but never again.

At my age and condition I wouldn't even do one shot with anything bigger than 44 Mag (unless it was solidly mounted on a heavy tripod, and maybe not even then.) I just don't have a need for that kind of energy in a handgun, and decided not to subject my joints to the wear and tear. Now if I was younger and tougher . . .
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Old 11-21-2020, 03:29 PM
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Default Most don't consider it a handgun

Most don't consider it a handgun, but I have a 14.5' barrel one that every time I take it to the range the people in the store come out to see what the racket is all about. Remington XP100R in 350 Rem Magnum. oh yes there is some recoil when it goes off. 200gr bullet and 59 gr of 4064 about 2600 fps. picture of my rugrat at the bench with it
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Old 11-21-2020, 03:51 PM
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You should try it the 440 grain hardcast, heat treated, gas checked bullet load. I sold my 500 after experiencing nerve damage in my left hand and forearm (unrelated to shooting the 500).

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Old 11-21-2020, 03:59 PM
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Common story, 460s and 500s always
seem to be up for sale with the owners
breathlessly declaring they are LNIB,
ammo, scope included in sale price.
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Old 11-21-2020, 04:16 PM
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Not a fan of heavy recoil. Once shot 6 rounds of factory 240gr .44 Magnum out of a Ruger Super Redhawk. Made my hand red. Never had any interest in shooting full-power .357 Magnum loads. Definitely don't have an interest in shooting any bigger magnum loads.

I once shot Buffalo Bore .38 Special 158gr LSWCHP +P out of my 642-1. 5 rounds. My first thought was, "Well, I'm never doing that again!"

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Old 11-21-2020, 04:26 PM
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My first .44 Mag was a 4" Model 29 back in the 1960s. I fired 6 shots. Got rid of it fast. Next .44 Mag was a 7.5" Super Blackhawk. I've owned several 29s and 629s since. These have at least 6" barrels, but I way prefer the 8 3/8" variety for shooting. I do have a 4", but it's a no-dash 629 in the box, unfired. It's a safe queen.

John

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Old 11-21-2020, 04:40 PM
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It had a 6" bbl and I diffidently will NOT try the 400gr ammo. Although I must say I did rather well, 5 shots at 50yds. (rested) first one 3'' low left second 3'' high right and the last three were in a 1'' group dead center.(amazing how well you can shoot with your eyes closed). I can now check it off of my bucket list. also I did feel kinda bad, he said he payed $50 for a box of 20.

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Old 11-21-2020, 04:46 PM
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If a guy isn't enough of a man to handle a .500, he needs to stick to the girly-gun calibers, like .44 Magnum! ;-) :-)
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Old 11-21-2020, 05:05 PM
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If a guy isn't enough of a man to handle a .500, he needs to stick to the girly-gun calibers, like .44 Magnum! ;-) :-)
"A man got's to know his limitations", and I found mine
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Old 11-21-2020, 05:13 PM
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My 629 gets only 215gr at 1200fps;that's enough for it.But my Super Blackhawk and Dan Wesson 44 get the full treatment with 265 and 275gr bullets at over 1300fps.The guns are heavy enough that I can still shoot them accuratly.But I must admit that this is my limit.Any more than that and I get a bad case of flinchittis!

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Old 11-21-2020, 05:41 PM
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My buddy who knows nothing about handguns nor owns any wanted a s&w 500? I took him shooting and let him shoot my Redhawk 44/5.5” barrel with stout loads. He doesn’t say much after that trip. I could of let him shoot a 7.5” barrel but I figure more recoil out of the 5.5” barrel. The 44 mag at my age is enough for me. I have arthritis in my wrists. If I was younger I be all over a 480 ruger/500 s&w. I like the bfr in 444 marlin too.
I’m no wimpy guy. Just old and wornout.
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Old 11-21-2020, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by PALADIN85020 View Post
My first .44 Mag was a 4" Model 29 back in the 1960s. I fired 6 shots. Got rid of it fast. Next .44 Mag was a 7.5" Super Blackhawk. I've owned several 29s and 629s since. These have at least 6" barrels, but I way prefer the 8 3/8" variety for shooting. I do have a 4", but it's a no-dash 629 in the box, unfired. It's a safe queen.

John

I hear ya brother I like 5.5Ē, 6Ē, 6 1/2Ē barrels and longer. But the m58 41/4Ē handles well. I donít like the 357 stubbiest.
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Old 11-21-2020, 05:59 PM
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I know of 3 LGSís that have used 500ís and 460ís. None of the LGSís want another.

Theyíve all been sitting in their respective LGSí since at least March.
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Old 11-21-2020, 06:02 PM
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I was shooting at a outdoor range and this guy and his girl friend came to a spot close to me. The girl had not shot a handgun before and he had a .500 for her to shoot. One shot did it and I doubt if she will ever shoot again.
He asked me if I wanted to shoot it and it was hard to make my No Thanks sound decent. He was a jerk, first class. A smaller caliber and she might have liked the sport.
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Old 11-21-2020, 07:19 PM
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My first .44 Mag was a 4" Model 29 back in the 1960s. I fired 6 shots. Got rid of it fast. Next .44 Mag was a 7.5" Super Blackhawk. I've owned several 29s and 629s since. These have at least 6" barrels, but I way prefer the 8 3/8" variety for shooting. I do have a 4", but it's a no-dash 629 in the box, unfired. It's a safe queen.



John



I have an older 4" 629 and I love to shoot it. I sent it to Magna Port long before cell phones and email. They called my land line and asked what load I was shooting. I told them my stoutest load was a 300 grain hardcast, heat treated, gas checked bullet (sound familiar? See my post above). They immediately suggested that I double port it and they did. It's been a great gun to shoot ever since. Nope. Not for sale at any price!

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Old 11-21-2020, 07:40 PM
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I have a friend who loves his S&W 500 and brings it to the range every trip. When he asks me to shoot it, that is my S&W 500 fix; and it is enough,
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Old 11-21-2020, 07:52 PM
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In Indja, a long time ago we chaps
rode in the howdah ready for the
boldest of beasts. Today, I dub the
Smith 500 THE Howdah of the howdahs.
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Old 11-21-2020, 08:11 PM
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Maybe 10 or 15 years ago, I bought a used Freedom Arms 83 in 454Casul only because the price was really 'right' and it had almost no wear/use to it.I fired one round of factory ammo and sold it for a tidy profit..... Nice gun !!!

J.
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Old 11-21-2020, 08:24 PM
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My 629-4 Mountain Gun taught me to shoot a lot of Specials and light Magnums but only carry full load Magnums. I wouldn't shoot any .44 lighter than that.
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Old 11-22-2020, 01:00 AM
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In the early 1970s I was buying Ruger Blackhawks and Super Blackhawks and sawing the barrels to 4&5/8' or 4&3/4" then I picked up a Blackhawk in 30 carbine, Dad said as soon as he saw it ( you had better shoot that one before cutting it ) took it to the range with a handfull of 30 Carbine ball ammo. He was right it was an ear splitting experience and I never shortened that one, still hurts my ears to think of it.
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Old 11-22-2020, 02:01 AM
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Only way I'd have one of these is if it were the 8.5 inch barrel, and somebody gave it to me for free.

I'd load 350 grain SWC up to about 1000 fps and have fun. No full power loads for me.
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Old 11-22-2020, 11:13 AM
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In the early 1970s I was buying Ruger Blackhawks and Super Blackhawks and sawing the barrels to 4&5/8' or 4&3/4" then I picked up a Blackhawk in 30 carbine, Dad said as soon as he saw it ( you had better shoot that one before cutting it ) took it to the range with a handfull of 30 Carbine ball ammo. He was right it was an ear splitting experience and I never shortened that one, still hurts my ears to think of it.
i agree with the ear-splitting noise on the .30 carbine Blackhawk. There is no way I'd cut the barrel - there was a reason they only made them with a 7.5" barrel. Here's mine. The rounds pictured were brought back from WWII; they belonged to my boyhood next door neighbor, a veteran of the Battle of the Bulge in a tank destroyer outfit.

John

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Old 11-23-2020, 02:48 PM
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I think that .30 Cal. Carbine means .30 Cal. carbine, not a pistol load. Oh well, it may be fun for some, but not many.
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Old 11-24-2020, 05:35 PM
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I'm fine with .22lr, .22wmr and .38 Special.
I have some .357 but that is for my wife's rifle.
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Old 11-24-2020, 08:58 PM
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In the early 80's I had two Redhawks, a 7.5" with a 4x12 pistol scope, and a 5.5" with just the iron sights. Both shot ~1-1.5" groups at 25-75 yards off a rest, no problems. My loads were a 240 cast "Keith" SWC that my gunsmith made, over 18.5 gr of 2400. Plenty of punch.

One day at the outdoor club I shot at, two "yayhoos" showed up with a new 7.5" Redhawk and their own loads. Each round had a orange ball of flame about 3 feet in diameter, and turned people's heads at the skeet range a quarter mile away. (No fun sitting 30' away at the other end of the bench. Felt like an earthquake). They sat it down, opened the cylinder, and tried to eject the cases - big fail. I got a ball peen out of my trunk, and they destroyed a cleaning rod pounding the cases out. I asked "What did you load?" Answer was 24 gr of 2400... and a 240 gr JHP...

Ummm - ok.
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Old 11-24-2020, 10:10 PM
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I've never touched off a .500 round, but I shot a round out of a guy's 460 magnum once. Felt like my hand got it with a bat and the concussion hit me right in the chest. Definitely made an impression.
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Old 11-24-2020, 10:43 PM
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I love my 500. My wife’s Uncle shot it one time, handed it back, walked away rubbing his wrist muttering about seeing a doctor and a lawyer. LOL He brings it up every Christmas. My 80 yr old father in law loves shooting a couple of rounds whenever I bring it over. I’d like to try the 4” sometime.
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Old 11-24-2020, 11:06 PM
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I had a friend of mine, many years ago, that decided that a 14" heavy barrel .44 magnum Thompson Center Contender would be a fun gun to experiment with. So he re-chambered it to .444 Marlin. After the first round, it was back to the shop to port the barrel. Even then it was an unruly beast! And yes, I did touch off one round, and believe me that was enough to last me a lifetime!
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Old 11-24-2020, 11:23 PM
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I have never had the opportunity to shoot the 500 S&W magnum . I do shoot the 4 , model 29 with my handloads , from " mild to wild " . I have shot the Keith load of 22 grs of 2400 using " HIS " swc , H&G 503 . I have just PC Magna's on the frame for grips . I don't find it too much . It just takes practice to learn how to shoot the 4" 44 with full magnum loads . I totally agree with Mr Keith , the 4 " 44 is just right , no matter the load if you learn how to shoot it . Regards Paul
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Old 11-25-2020, 12:02 AM
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It's one of my favorite subjects. People seem to not understand how punishing these monster calibers can be, or how punishing a .38 Special can be in a Scandium gun. Been there, done that, no thank you.

I shot a .30 Carbine handgun once, many years ago. Touched off a .35 Remington in what we used to call a "hanfle". Same day. Same conclusion. That was fun. Done and done.

I love to tell the story of the hotshot police officer from San Angelo who took his CHL Instructor's test with me and at the range, for the revolver test, he brought out a nice blued revolver, not a S&W as I recall, 4" barrel, and 50 rounds of full house, factory 44 Magnum ammunition. I was shocked and looked askance at him and asked him if he really planned to shoot 50 round of 44 Magnum in that gun.

"No problem" he countered. Prior to our shooting we had discussed our backgrounds so I knew he was a hotshot, 30 something, cowboy-type LEO from Central West Texas, so I shut up.

50 rounds later he did pass the test. His hands were blistered and bleeding and I laughed. "Tolyaso" was what I allowed and he nodded and admitted he'd never do that again.
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Old 11-25-2020, 12:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ancient-one View Post
I was shooting at a outdoor range and this guy and his girl friend came to a spot close to me. The girl had not shot a handgun before and he had a .500 for her to shoot. One shot did it and I doubt if she will ever shoot again.
He asked me if I wanted to shoot it and it was hard to make my No Thanks sound decent. He was a jerk, first class. A smaller caliber and she might have liked the sport.
I do NOT like Twit's like the one you described!! Before I let ANYONE shoot my 500 I'll question them so's to find out if they've shot a high powered pistol before and go from there! So far I've not come across anyone who's actually fired one of these Beastie's so I pretty much treat all of them the same when I run them through just what to expect, check their stance, etc... Then I'll load just 1 round for them to try which is one of my reloads, a 350gr Berry's or 350gr Hornady XTP HP loaded to about 1200fps. Almost all have been surprised at the lack of recoil that they were expecting to get!! Then and ONLY then will I ask if they wanna try a 500gr Hornady full house magnum. And Again.. They only get 1 bullet!!!!

I'm Big into doing the Barney Fife thing when I let someone fire my gun!!! To me it's a lot safer way for a person with no experience to fire the gun because there is NO chance of a doublefire!!

Oh yeah, mine's got the 8-3/"8 barrel which I believe helps a lot with the recoil!!
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Old 11-25-2020, 09:59 AM
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For me, my opinion is that if I need a handgun with more power than a 44 Magnum, then what I really need is a rifle.

Shoot a qualification course with full power 44 Magnum? Just remember, even Dirty Harry Callahan shot "light special" ammo.
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Old 11-25-2020, 10:14 AM
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Iíve fired exactly two rounds of .500 S&W. The first round jolted me all the way back to my shoulder and neck. I thought, ďIt canít be that bad! I must have tensed up when I fired it.Ē So I took one more shot. It was that bad!

That was the end of any interest I might ever have in the .500. I donít really even much enjoy shooting full-charge .44s any more.
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Old 11-25-2020, 10:31 AM
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As I have posted before , if your arms are like 2 stiff boards out in front of you , then the recoil can be painful . If you relax your arms , bend your elbows slightly and let the recoil come back through your arms , into your shoulders and down through your whole body , then it isn't painful and can even become not even a consideration . After shooting 5 rounds of Elmer Keiths magnum load of 22 grs of 2400 behind his bullet I found I was completely enjoying it . The recoil was brisk but in no way discomforting . So I finished shooting the box of 50 . These were fired in my 29-10 , 4" barrel . It's the gun I describe as being my " ole work horse " .
I'm not saying that shooting the S&W 500 mag is not a challenge as I'm sure it is . I'm also sure , that with practice and patience it can be overcome . My son , a former Marine said he was always told in recruit training that " pain is just weakness leaving the body " . Regards Paul
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Old 11-25-2020, 12:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnnu2 View Post
Maybe 10 or 15 years ago, I bought a used Freedom Arms 83 in 454Casul only because the price was really 'right' and it had almost no wear/use to it.I fired one round of factory ammo and sold it for a tidy profit..... Nice gun !!!

J.
I've seen grown men fire one round of .454, put the gun down, walk away and say no more. A full house heavy load in a .454 can be brutal, but quite effective.
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Old 11-25-2020, 01:20 PM
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My favorite Redhawk is a 7.5" I bought used. It came with a half box of factory 44 mag and 1 box of Buffalo Bore 340gr that was missing 1 round. The guy had spent a bundle having the action smoothed up, fired 1/2 a box and 1 round and decided 44 was not for him. One of my better buys. I do shoot some Buffalo Bores now and then just so that I know what to expect if/when I ever need it in a life or death situation with a large jaw popping predator that wants me more than a salmon dinner.
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Old 11-25-2020, 11:05 PM
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Beautiful 44 Mag kenjen!

I cut my teeth on a 44 Mag Ruger Blackhawk, pre Super Blackhawk. My dad's friend owned it; he was a serious target shooter and experimenter; kind'a like a local Elmer Keith. He loaded his Ruger above with 27 grs. of 2400 w/240 grain hard cast gas checked bullet when he wanted long range accuracy. i shot often with all of his loads. The 27 Gr load was awesome. But recoil was nothing like what I describe below. Mostly because it was a single action, but also holding as he taught us and like cowboy4evr describes above. Single actions just roll up in the hands with heavy loads and are still my favorite hot load guns to shoot.

Soon after I was 20 in 1966 I owned only two handguns, Ruger Super Single Six convertible .22 and a Ruger Blackhawk .44 Mag, I had cut to 4 5/8". I reloaded 44 Special for it. I still have more fun with calibers between .22 and .44 Spl, excluding .357 Mag. I don't shoot much hot stuff, except 21 grs of H110 44 Mag in a Super BH at silhouette matches.

A friend of an acquaintance carried a DA 454 in Alaska where he lived. Always carried it on his walks. One day he heard a snort across the dirt road he was walking. An old brown bear, big brown bear, came boiling out of the woods at him. Pulled his 454 and began emptying it at the bear, most of the shots hit the bear, the last, right in the nose at point blank range. The bear died but actually slid past him after hitting the ground, he was that close.

Everything is relative. The guy never felt any recoil nor heard any of the shots. After he threw up, and could talk again, he concluded two things: the 454 did the job, but just did, with no margin for error.

I do have a 500 Mag 4". I had no need for one but it was new, sitting in the store for awhile and the reduced price was too tempting...I bought it to try and as a conversation piece. Although the ammo is expensive it's the cheapest gun I own to shoot, almost nobody wants to shoot it more than once! I'm probably responsible for the most friends with a little scar from the 500 front sight on the top middle of their scalps. Not all my shooting friends but a few. And this was after they observed me shooting it first and the warning that if they dropped it, they bought it.

The secret to shooting it is just as cowboy4evr posted above, how you roll with the gun and don't stiff arm it. The other is the Hogue "TAMER" grips; the jell packing on the rear of the grips that pads the hand are a must.

But it's not the hardest kicking handgun S&W makes, nor is the 460 Mag. My son's S&W 329 Airweight 44 Mag with 4" barrel takes the cake for that, especially with 300 grain 44 Mags. I was actually out of commission after one shot. My hand was numb and I didn't dare shoot another round for fear of dropping the gun due to lack of strength in my hand. However, once I replaced the factory Hogue rubbers that have an open backstrap and the wood grips (it came with both), with my 500 Hogue "TAMER" grips (same size), no problem. Still a fierce recoiling gun but no more incapacitating or numbing of my hand.
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Old Yesterday, 03:19 AM
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What a beast!!! I have given serious thought to getting the 500 and almost did so about 6 - 9 months. Decided to add a 45LC to my collection (Thank you SW Classified ads) as one night the Colt just posted with my name on it, so I held off on the 500. Been thinking about a Christmas gift for myself but inventories on anything firearms related is hit and miss at this time.. Well there is always next year.. After all getting ammo is another concern.
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Old Yesterday, 09:42 AM
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I am not new to shooting hard recoiling hand guns, it's just that at my age my body is not as forgiving as it once was, things that didn't bother me before do now. massive amount of recoil are just not fun any more, I'm sure if I was standing up and not shooting from the bench it would have been different. All I am saying is that darn gun hurt. Like I told my friend after I shot his S&W 460, dinosaurs died along time ago...

Last edited by kenjen; Yesterday at 09:50 AM.
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Old Yesterday, 11:00 AM
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The big kickers are great for the young fellows who havenít reached their lifetime allotment of handgun recoil and havenít been kicked over that threshold yet. Some of us (like me!) reached it long ago. Thereís no point in revisiting it now.
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Old Yesterday, 12:21 PM
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My solution to aging hands? Back when America had guns for sale (2019), I bought a Marlin SBL 44 mag lever action as a way to get through my .44 magnum ammo in comfort. The way things are developing, I am glad I did.
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Old Yesterday, 12:37 PM
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I also have a 44 mag rifle (winchester 94). Now a lever rifle in the S&W 460 and 500 would be interesting. It would make a nice short range firearm.
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Old Yesterday, 12:55 PM
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I too have a lever gun in 44 mag. Mine is the scarce Ruger 96/44. I am surprised how many pink pantie wearing fellas actually think these rifles have too harsh of a recoil.
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Old Yesterday, 02:51 PM
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I’ve had 44mg since early 60s, Ruger SBH. S&W 29 a few years later, 4” which I capitalized on Dirty Harry in 70s and sold. I still have my original SBH and have had many 29s since. I also had some wild stuff, Automags ect. I just got to point that nothing bigger than 44mag interested me. I carry a rifle bear hunting and don’t subscribe to back ups. If 44 don’t handle it a rifle should be used on it. If I was worried about being attacked I would be carrying a 12g full of slugs.
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Old Yesterday, 05:05 PM
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I am recoil sensitive, and the 44mag is as big as I go in a revolver, and I am not too fond of the recoil in a round butt 29 with those thin morado combats. In a rifle 30-06 is the limit. I have tried larger, and I cannot take the punishment
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Old Today, 12:48 AM
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Quote:
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You should try it the 440 grain hardcast, heat treated, gas checked bullet load. I sold my 500 after experiencing nerve damage in my left hand and forearm (unrelated to shooting the 500).

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Thatís interesting. The nerve damage (unrelated to firearms) I have which effects my hand sensory is what allows me to fire the 500, with degree of tolerance. The recoil actually has been therapeutic at times
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