First Time Shooting Revolvers

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YankeeTarheel
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First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

Today I shot 3 rental revolvers at one of the local ranges. All were .357 / .38 caliber and were a Taurus 65 (I think) 8 rounds, a Ruger Police Service 6 rounds, and a S&W 686 7 rounds. All were range rats, needing cleaning. Bought a box of .357 and a box of .38. The .357 Magnum has a hell of a kick, but the .38 puts out a ton of smoke, but far less recoil.

I liked the way the Taurus felt, and I guess I did OK, but it jammed on me and I couldn't seem to aim it well. The Ruger felt worse, too small, but more accurate, and the S&W was better all around than the other two. I only got pictures of my targets for the Ruger and S&W (Taurus was worse). Please be kind--I've only been shooting since January a year ago.
Ruger at 7 yards with .357
RugerPoliceService357at7yards.jpg
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

Ruger with .38 at 7 yards
RugerPoliceService38at7yards.jpg
""If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." -- LBJ

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

S&W with .357 at 7 yards
S&W686-357-7yds.jpg
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

S&W with .38 at 7 yards
S&W686-38-7yds.jpg
""If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." -- LBJ

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

Ruger at 10 yards with .357, then .38 (see if I can get 2 attachments)
RugerPoliceService357at10yards.jpg
RugerPoliceService38at10yards.jpg
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

S&W686-357-10yds-DA.jpg
S&W at 10 yards with .357, then .38
Attachments
S&W686-38-10yds-DA.jpg
""If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." -- LBJ

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

Now shooting 10 yards as Single Action: Ruger .357 and .38 (4 rounds each)
RugerPoliceService357at10yardsSA.jpg
RugerPoliceService38at10yardsSA4Rds.jpg
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

Finally, my Sig p320 Compact, 9mm, at 10 yards, about 20 rounds.
Sig9mm20rds10Yds.jpg
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

The red center dot is a little less than an inch across.

Obviously, I'm far more comfortable with the Sig than any of the revolvers.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by Hiker »

Go easy on yourself, you are doing alright. Any new gun takes a little getting used to. And some guns are harder to shoot. Just keep at it.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by sikacz »

You did fine. Just practice. Once you get a revolver of your own you'll get better used to the gun. I like my wife's K-38 with a 6" barrel. Easy to shoot and practice with.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by SailDesign »

Yup - revolvers are "different" if you're not used to them. And loudenboomers are more so.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

I like to use ear plugs and -30db ear muffs. Save my already less-than-stellar hearing. Funny, I can hear a sour note out of a 100 piece orchestra, or identify the sound of my kid's trumpet in a band concert, or tell a mediocre speaker from a good one, but any ambient noise and all speech is gibberish! Turning into a codger!
""If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." -- LBJ

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by MaxwellG »

You're doing great YT, I love revolvers the S&W 686 is "on the list" for a must get pistoli.
I have a Ruger GP-100 and it's the darling of the collection, revolvers are a lot of fun...especially if you locate a nice, old serviceable one like a Colt, Ruger or S&W Police type model.
It's different than a semi-auto, your target look fine it was your first time...did you shoot Dual Action and Single Action one any of them?
I like the 38S P/.357 Magnum it's so versatile in the rounds that you can get for it, literally loads of choices and I think the only ammo more plentiful might be .45 ACP (don't talk to me about 9mm).

I brought out the GP-100 to the indoor range last week, a younger man in his 30's asked me about it, so I let him shoot 6 of the 38 SP, he liked it. Let him try the .357 and told him "Hang on". he was enamored with the revolver.
Several people came up to me and asked about the revolver and asked how I liked it. The answer is YES.
.22 revolvers are nice too there are some that offer swappable cylinders for .22 & .22 Magnum.

A 38 SP/.357 Magnum is a great choice if you don't yet have a revolver and want one. Rugers are built like tanks and sorta utilitarian, S&W are tweaked out.

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

MaxwellG wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:27 pm
You're doing great YT, I love revolvers the S&W 686 is "on the list" for a must get pistoli.
I have a Ruger GP-100 and it's the darling of the collection, revolvers are a lot of fun...especially if you locate a nice, old serviceable one like a Colt, Ruger or S&W Police type model.
It's different than a semi-auto, your target look fine it was your first time...did you shoot Dual Action and Single Action one any of them?
I like the 38S P/.357 Magnum it's so versatile in the rounds that you can get for it, literally loads of choices and I think the only ammo more plentiful might be .45 ACP (don't talk to me about 9mm).

I brought out the GP-100 to the indoor range last week, a younger man in his 30's asked me about it, so I let him shoot 6 of the 38 SP, he liked it. Let him try the .357 and told him "Hang on". he was enamored with the revolver.
Several people came up to me and asked about the revolver and asked how I liked it. The answer is YES.
.22 revolvers are nice too there are some that offer swappable cylinders for .22 & .22 Magnum.

A 38 SP/.357 Magnum is a great choice if you don't yet have a revolver and want one. Rugers are built like tanks and sorta utilitarian, S&W are tweaked out.

It's all good!
Thanks for all the good input. I must admit, it was like riding a bicycle...but one I didn't really know or care for. I did shoot a bit SA only and DA only. I was a bit more accurate with SA because, of course, the softer trigger pull.

I think the most disappointing thing was I thought revolvers were supposed to be impervious to everything and semis were more sensitive. But I had failures to fire, shells jammed in the cylinders, even firing when I didn't intend it to during SA firing. I had to call the RSO over to show me how to safely clear the Ruger because the shells were so stuck. Curiously, the stuck shells and FTF were all with .357, rather than the .38 shells which had the unintentional firing (????). But I was NOT happy with all the smoke from the .38s and breathing that shit.

Still, I was almost ready to plunk down bucks for a Ruger 4" 1771 .357 but it was all dinged up on the top of the barrel behind the front sight and the only one in the store. The 1771 (didn't shoot it) felt COMPLETELY and totally different than the Police Service rental and far more comfortable.

But I put a hundred rounds through the Sig without a twitch, even using the new (!!!) 10 round mags I bought in anticipation of the NJ bill ending the 15 round limit. Even if it doesn't pass, they are perfectly good magazines and will fit the Carry Grip Module (when I can get one) as they are longer than my 15 rounders.

But one thing I like about .357 is that there are lever-action rifles that use it, if NJ decides to totally outlaw my Cx4 and Sub2000, which I don't get--especially the Cx4.
""If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." -- LBJ

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by TrueTexan »

Possibly the reason for the jams on the Ruger with 357 is a carbon ring build up. When you shot a lot of 38 spl in a 357 build up a ring of carbon in the cylinder due to the shorter brass. It is only .1 of an inch but makes all the difference. So when you load the 357 the brass sticks out just a little bit but can cause the cylinder to jam. A good scrubbing will fix that. I reload, so if I want to shot 38 loads out of my 357 I just load 357 brass with 38 load data and increase powder to account for the extra 1/10 of an inch longer case.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

TrueTexan wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 8:29 pm
Possibly the reason for the jams on the Ruger with 357 is a carbon ring build up. When you shot a lot of 38 spl in a 357 build up a ring of carbon in the cylinder due to the shorter brass. It is only .1 of an inch but makes all the difference. So when you load the 357 the brass sticks out just a little bit but can cause the cylinder to jam. A good scrubbing will fix that. I reload, so if I want to shot 38 loads out of my 357 I just load 357 brass with 38 load data and increase powder to account for the extra 1/10 of an inch longer case.
That makes sense. These were range rats and were pretty dirty. Not my job to clean their guns. Everyone sneers, but I'd still like to shoot the Detective Miller gun, the Chiappa revolver. Conceptually, it seems like a great and clever solution. Not interested in reloading, to be honest.
""If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." -- LBJ

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by Marlene »

I really liked the Chiappa I shot.

I don’t think you can blame revolvers for your accidental discharge. Either there was a serious problem with the gun or booger hook off the bang switch.

To have an idea of how long these guns have likely been under constant abuse, take a look and see when that Ruger model was last offered for sale.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by AZAndy »

The targets show opportunities for improvement in a couple of areas-- trigger control and grip. You obviously know how sights work, going by the Sig target, but revolvers are really good at moving those sights around while you're trying to shoot. In double action, the trigger is requiring nine or ten pounds of effort on a gun that weighs a quarter of that, and travels a goodly ways before it releases the hammer, so there's a lot of room for error. A firm grip with proper hand placement will help some in holding the sights more steady while your trigger finger is trying to pull the sights of the target. Another problem is that pulling the trigger straight back is difficult, since it travels in a curve, and the placement of the finger on the trigger can make a big difference. If you're right-handed, those shots going to the left are a sign of finger placement that is too shallow.

A good starting point for trigger finger placement is to have the furthest crease of the finger against the right edge of the trigger (again, assuming you're right-handed). Fingers aren't hinged in such a way as to allow the finger to move in exactly the same way the trigger does, so it's okay to allow the finger to slide across the face of the trigger as it moves back. The crease will wind up on the other side of the trigger, or beyond, depending on the gun, as it fires.

Here are some tips on grip and finger placement from Jerry Miculek: http://www.shootingusa.com/PRO_TIPS/MIC ... ulek2.html

There are a couple of dry-firing exercises that can help with trigger and grip control. One is to place a coin, like a quarter, flat on top of the barrel just behind the front sight, and to operate the trigger so that the coin doesn't fall off. Another is to dry-fire while using a laser sight and to try to minimize the dot's wobble.

For the single-action targets, I'm guessing you're getting the sights where you want them to be, fighting the natural movement of the sights as they waver around, and then trying to "grab the shot" when everything lines up. The sudden trigger motion then pulls the sights off what you were aiming at. Grant Cunningham teaches a technique to overcome that problem that I have found useful-- don't struggle against the sights wavering, just try to keep the wobble within a small area while applying gradually increasing pressure on the trigger.

The great thing about improving performance with a revolver is that your abilities with semi-autos and rifles will also improve. You'll wind up with the ability to mentally separate your trigger finger from the rest of your hand, which is a great stride forward.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

Marlene wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 12:59 am
I really liked the Chiappa I shot.

I don’t think you can blame revolvers for your accidental discharge. Either there was a serious problem with the gun or booger hook off the bang switch.

To have an idea of how long these guns have likely been under constant abuse, take a look and see when that Ruger model was last offered for sale.
A big thumbs-up to both your points. :thumbup: As my eldest liked to say "Your computer problem is between the keyboard and the chair!" :oops: :lol:

Unfortunately, rental guns only give you a partial perspective of what your own gun will function like for you for the reasons you mention. But, unless you know someone who owns something they'll share at the range with you, that's your only source of information--beat up, abused, not-cleaned worn-out approximations you hope are close to what you want to own.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

AZAndy wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 7:35 am
The targets show opportunities for improvement in a couple of areas-- trigger control and grip. You obviously know how sights work, going by the Sig target, but revolvers are really good at moving those sights around while you're trying to shoot. In double action, the trigger is requiring nine or ten pounds of effort on a gun that weighs a quarter of that, and travels a goodly ways before it releases the hammer, so there's a lot of room for error. A firm grip with proper hand placement will help some in holding the sights more steady while your trigger finger is trying to pull the sights of the target. Another problem is that pulling the trigger straight back is difficult, since it travels in a curve, and the placement of the finger on the trigger can make a big difference. If you're right-handed, those shots going to the left are a sign of finger placement that is too shallow.

A good starting point for trigger finger placement is to have the furthest crease of the finger against the right edge of the trigger (again, assuming you're right-handed). Fingers aren't hinged in such a way as to allow the finger to move in exactly the same way the trigger does, so it's okay to allow the finger to slide across the face of the trigger as it moves back. The crease will wind up on the other side of the trigger, or beyond, depending on the gun, as it fires.

Here are some tips on grip and finger placement from Jerry Miculek: http://www.shootingusa.com/PRO_TIPS/MIC ... ulek2.html

There are a couple of dry-firing exercises that can help with trigger and grip control. One is to place a coin, like a quarter, flat on top of the barrel just behind the front sight, and to operate the trigger so that the coin doesn't fall off. Another is to dry-fire while using a laser sight and to try to minimize the dot's wobble.

For the single-action targets, I'm guessing you're getting the sights where you want them to be, fighting the natural movement of the sights as they waver around, and then trying to "grab the shot" when everything lines up. The sudden trigger motion then pulls the sights off what you were aiming at. Grant Cunningham teaches a technique to overcome that problem that I have found useful-- don't struggle against the sights wavering, just try to keep the wobble within a small area while applying gradually increasing pressure on the trigger.

The great thing about improving performance with a revolver is that your abilities with semi-autos and rifles will also improve. You'll wind up with the ability to mentally separate your trigger finger from the rest of your hand, which is a great stride forward.
All good points. Since yesterday was the first time I ever fired a revolver, and I had a box of .357 ($40) and a box of .38 ($32) and an hour of range time, I really only got through a hundred rounds, while trying to evaluate my results and record them for input from you all (for which I am grateful to everyone). Plus, without snap caps, I'm not eager to dry-fire someone else's gun, even a range rental. When I finally get my own, and snap caps, I'll do the dry-fire exercises.

Interestingly, I have rented hammer-fired semis and been happy with the results (of some). The Beretta 92fs was 3rd on my initial purchase list (after the VP9 and PPQ) and I later tried the H-K P30 as I was thinking about the SK version of it (but there was no rental). Had I included it in my original first shootings of test guns, it would EASILY have been tied with the VP9 and PPQ. I mention it because they are both DA/SA. I even never cared too much for the range's rental P320 Sig, but really liked the modularity of it--and I like mine, the Compact RX, nearly as much as the VP9, especially since the recall, OOPS! "Voluntary Upgrade". I may just get the Sub-Compact conversion kit for the Sig as that's about 1/2 the cost all-in of the P30sk and VP9sk and, of course, doesn't require permits or anything.
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by CDFingers »

Hiker wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 5:54 pm
Go easy on yourself, you are doing alright. Any new gun takes a little getting used to. And some guns are harder to shoot. Just keep at it.
I agree.

Revolvers are very simple with very little to go wrong. I prefer them, though I have some semi's. They're great to unlearn a flinch by loading one, skipping one, then loading two. Since you don't know whether you're on a full chamber, you can spot your flinch. I say "bang" for each of the trigger pulls. I got rid of my flinch.

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

Testing and renting guns is an expensive pastime, even at the range I was at where they allow you to swap out guns of the same caliber at no extra cost. 1 hour of range time, 1 rental, 2 boxes of ammo was $105 or $106 bucks! At that was with my own targets. They'll lend you eye and ear protection. The other range I go to charges for ear and eye protection if you don't bring it (I prefer my own) and demands you buy their targets for use on the long (50 yard) range. And both seriously overcharge for ammo, and require that you use theirs.

One used to have a Chiappa, but said it was out for repair more than it was on the rack, so they pulled it.

I don't have any real emotional attachment to any revolver but I like the Ruger's plain, meat&potatoes practical approach, even though I didn't like the rental I shot.
""If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." -- LBJ

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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by SailDesign »

YankeeTarheel wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 9:36 am
<snip expensive range tactics....>

I don't have any real emotional attachment to any revolver but I like the Ruger's plain, meat&potatoes practical approach, even though I didn't like the rental I shot.
I have a "few" revolvers, and love them all for different reasons.

Single-Six convertible (22LR anad 22WMR) Classic looks, even in the short barrel fairly accurate. Fun and cheap-to-run.

Smith and Wesson 48-7 - one of their modern rebuilds, 22WMR, just a joy to shoot. 4" barrel but more accurate than the Single-Six.

NAA mini-revolver in 22Short. A hoot - not used often but I have lusted after one for years "just coz". Have to shoot carefully or my finger, being fat, is in line with the cylinder gap. That can hurt.

Colt Police Positive, 1919, in 32 Colt Police (32 S&W Long) a little jewel, in mint condition, uses ammo with very little recoil and can shoot wadcutters with even less.

Husqvarna Mod.1887 in 7.5 x 22mm Swedish (built in 1892). Bought it cos it was amusing to own a revolver made by the folks that built my lawn tractor. Shoot beautifully, but ammo only available from one reloader in Oklahoma. But great fun. Rumour has it that it will also take 32 S&W Long - untested.

1943 Albion-made Enfield No. 1* in 38 S&W. Double-action only, and a heavy pull, but fun. I feel like Michael Caine in "Zulu" every time I head to the range with it.

Brand-new Ruger Single-Seven in 327 Federal Magnum. This one has some "authority" compared to the rest. But superbly fun to shoot. While it will take 32 S&W short and long, plus 32 H&R Magnum in addition to it's "named" calibre, using them causes the case-sticking you noticed if you switch back to 327 FedMag. A quick removal of the cylinder and they knock out very easily with a cleaning rod, though.

Hmmmm... That is more than I remember owning, so they must have built up a bit. If I had to pick two, it would be the Colt and the Single-Six convertible. But I hope I never have to pick...


Shooting stuff is fun!
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Re: First Time Shooting Revolvers

Post by YankeeTarheel »

In NJ, you can buy as many long guns as you want (if you have an FPID), they just run the NICS on them.

But every handgun requires, in addition to the FPID, a permit signed off on by your local PD. You can request any number of permits at a time, but even if they are granted, you must wait 30 days between each purchase. Plus you have 90 days to make a purchase, though it can be extended to 180.

The point of going through all this rigmarole is explain why each choice needs to be made carefully, because a mistake can take weeks or months to unwind.

Again, that's one of the reasons I got the Sig, so I can make it into a sub-compact, a carry, or a .357, all without another permit.
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