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  • .38 revolver

    I am going to purchase a .38 revolver to carry off-duty. I am looking at the ultra light .38 s&w with no hammer, but I am interested to hear what you all have to say about what you like or dont like when it comes to revolvers. I am not stuck on the s&w but I can get one for $350.

  • #2
    I carry one. I chose it because it's light enough to slip into my pocket no matter what I'm wearing. I say go for it.

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    • #3
      My personal preference, I won't carry an ultra light revolver, I prefer the heft of steel. Having said that, I absolutely love my S&W 640 which is a stainless steel hammerless J-frame, and carry it almost every day. So if you like the ultra light go for it.
      Forti Fors Bona

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      • #4
        I've been carrying a Model 60 off duty for probably the past 15 years. No complaints, I think you'll be well served with your choice.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by fyrdog View Post
          I won't carry an ultra light revolver, I prefer the heft of steel.
          I agree. I have a little Taurus 85 and love it.
          I make my living on Irish welfare.

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          • #6
            I'm with K9 Max, 15 years here too, and with a model 60! Love it!!! Whatever model you choose though, go for someting in .357 mag.! It's good to have the option of .357, .38+P, or .38+P+. I had an ultralight for awhile and had to buy these special 110gr. aluminum rounds It wasn't worth the savings in weight!
            "Don't mistake my kindness, for weakness"

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            • #7
              Is there a big difference in the kick and accuracy between the ulta light and the steel?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by 161 View Post
                Is there a big difference in the kick and accuracy between the ulta light and the steel?
                I frequently carry my airweight smith. The only problem I have is my wife always uses it. There is a noticable difference in any scandium,alluminum aircraft alloy or other titanium type frame vs the heavier steel framed small wheel guns, but it isn't enough to not use one.
                "Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. The MARINES don't have that problem." ....Ronald Reagan

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                • #9
                  In my opinion, both the 640-series and 340-series revolvers from S&W are great for off-duty carry.

                  I've used both, and the 340 is lighter but has a heavier recoil. The 340 is also considerably more expensive than the 640. Both can be easily and comfortably concealed.

                  I currently carry a 342PD with the HiVis sight, and I love it.

                  Make sure you go with the hammerless model, whatever you choose.
                  "Well I'd lock him up for what we know he did, and then throw in a few extra years for what he probably did." ~Hank Hill

                  "Why do you need to carry a gun? There aren't any bad people in this town..."

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                  • #10
                    I carry my S&W 642 every day. On duty in my ankle holster and off duty in a pocket holster. Can't say enough good things about this gun.

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                    • #11
                      I like the 642 as well, and carried one for years. Pocket portable. It's an up close and personal gun for sure. Hard to hit beyond 15 yards, but do-able if you practice.

                      I got rid of it and went to a Kahr in 9mm for a pocket gun. It's the same weight as a 642, carries two more rounds, and is very accurate.
                      "Say hal-lo to my leetle frahnd!"

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Ten-32 View Post
                        Make sure you go with the hammerless model, whatever you choose.
                        Don't automatically dismiss an exposed hammer. While hammerless has its benefits (less chance of snag) I have never had a problem w/ my traditional hammered S&W model 36. All comes down to practice of your draw stroke. With a rounded hammer spur and proper hand placement, it is a moot issue. Also the "body guard" models have a shrouded hammer that still allows for SA use.

                        I however prefer the heavier steel models. I had an airweight, but sold it because I could not shoot it as accurately as my all steel model at more of a "rapid fire" pace. (double-tap drills). At the gun counter, the difference in weight seems immense, But over the last 10 years of carrying my model 36 daily, I don't even know its there. I'll trade the few ounces for the ability to have faster, more accurate follow on shots.
                        Never give in--never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.
                        --Winston Churchill--

                        "Si vis pacem, para bellum"

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                        • #13
                          I carry a S&W Model 342 as a backup when working uniformed patrol. I added a "Big Dot" tritium night sight (from Ashley Express) and "Crimson Trace" laser grips. Although very light and compact, for off-duty I prefer to carry a small 9mm/.40 S&W or .45 ACP semi-auto. The ones offered today by companies such as Glock, Sig-Sauer, Walther and Kahr are nearly the same size and weight as the indicated revolver, but offer more powerful cartridges and more rounds available if needed.

                          Here's a pic of my S&W Model 640. It's equipped with the same sighting devices as my Model 342, but is constructed of stainless steel and is obviously more heavy.

                          "I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by SoCalSheriff View Post
                            Don't automatically dismiss an exposed hammer. While hammerless has its benefits (less chance of snag) I have never had a problem w/ my traditional hammered S&W model 36. All comes down to practice of your draw stroke. With a rounded hammer spur and proper hand placement, it is a moot issue. Also the "body guard" models have a shrouded hammer that still allows for SA use.

                            I however prefer the heavier steel models. I had an airweight, but sold it because I could not shoot it as accurately as my all steel model at more of a "rapid fire" pace. (double-tap drills). At the gun counter, the difference in weight seems immense, But over the last 10 years of carrying my model 36 daily, I don't even know its there. I'll trade the few ounces for the ability to have faster, more accurate follow on shots.

                            Yep - no argument.

                            My main reason for my opinion was the ability to reliably shoot from within clothing, i.e. a coat pocket, and the lighter weight.

                            For rapid fire, a heavier gun is probably better, as you say.
                            "Well I'd lock him up for what we know he did, and then throw in a few extra years for what he probably did." ~Hank Hill

                            "Why do you need to carry a gun? There aren't any bad people in this town..."

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                            • #15
                              Smith makes an excellent .38. I carried the 642 for years before switching to the M&P 340 a few months ago.

                              Never had any problems with it.

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