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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 02-23-2012, 02:47 PM
Alan Quackenbush Alan Quackenbush is offline
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Range report 686 no dash & 686-6 Plus Pro Range report 686 no dash & 686-6 Plus Pro Range report 686 no dash & 686-6 Plus Pro Range report 686 no dash & 686-6 Plus Pro Range report 686 no dash & 686-6 Plus Pro  
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Default Range report 686 no dash & 686-6 Plus Pro

Had the opportunity to shoot a 686 no dash with 4" barrel and a 686 Plus Pro with 5' barrel. I was curious if there was any real difference in how the 4 inch barrel felt compared to the 5 inch. The 4" had a full underlug and red ramp front sight and was pre-MIM and, as far as I know, had no trigger work or action tuning. The 5" had tapered underlug, slabside barrel, patridge front sight, and had a lighter rebound spring and the strain screw backed out a bit. I think the weight of the 4" is about an ounce heavier and felt a bit heavier in front--probably due to the 5" having less metal due to the slabside and tapered underlug. The 4" had square wooden grips and the 5" the rubber factory [Hogue?].

We used reloaded 38 special 158 grain lead swc over 3.5 grains of Bullseye with Federal primers. Recoil was pretty light with either. Both had nice smooth actions. The 5" had a bit lighter trigger pull due to the above. If there was any difference in feel due to MIM I could not tell it. While balance was slightly different both felt real good shooting and recoil felt about the same, as did muzzle flip. We didn't have any .357 rounds to get an idea if felt recoil would reveal any difference between guns. In theory the longer sight radius would give the 5" an advantage in accuracy. I found both to be as good as I can shoot. I don't shoot competitively and just shoot for the fun of it.

Bottom line is they both are great guns, quite accurate and personal preference for me would be the 5". The rubber grips are more ergonomically to my liking and the slabside barrel and tapered underlug appeal to me.
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Old 02-23-2012, 09:07 PM
bamabiker bamabiker is offline
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Range report 686 no dash & 686-6 Plus Pro  
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Thanks for the report. I've never shot a M686 that I did not like.
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686, bullseye, hogue, m686, model 686, patridge, rrwo

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