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Good evening all,

I’m considering buying my first S&W revolver in either 38 or 357. I’m looking at these calibers as I have a decent amount of brass and primers for reloading 38 special and would like to have a good D/A wheel gun for target shooting. I don’t need it for home defense as I have an M&P 45 for that.

I’m not a fan of the snub nose revolver and am looking at at least a 4” barrel.

I’ve read up on the model 10 and 65. Any others I should consider or stay away from?
Thank you in advance!

CG
 

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Model 10, hands down. S&W made literally MILLIONS of them and they can be found in everything from beater to mechanically good but finish challenged to pristine condition - and all price points in between.
 

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Welcome to the forums from the Wiregrass! I, too, agree with the suggestion of a Model 19 or Model 66. These twins have target sights that will make target shooting more enjoyable. If not one of these, the 586/686 are excellent choices as well.

Model 66


Model 686
 

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"For target shooting" pretty much eliminates the fixed sight frame models. With practice, you can reach out to 100 yards with a 6" even farther with more trigger time with a .357. A 19, 66, 586, 686 would do the job well, a 27 or 28 would do it better.
 

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I have found that if you set your sights on a particular model or variation of a model your search can be long and often unrewarding. And then there’s the second guessing concerning price and condition. 99% of my guns were just happened upon and in the early days before my forum education it was mostly a matter of the gun being for sale and me having money in my pocket. That being said I’m in the N Frame camp. You can shoot most any N Frame all day long without fatigue. One of my all time favorite shooters is my 8 shot Model 627 Pro Series 4”. It’s a modern gun without the allure of deep bluing or post war craftsmanship but it is just deadly accurate. Also there’s no guilt of adding to the wear of a collectible. Basically just buy something and get to shooting it. If you don’t like it sell it and try something else. With a little caution your education won’t cost much and you will have a ton of fun in the process.
 

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For your first S&W DA revolver, I'd suggest you look for a S&W M-15 or 19 or the stainless steel equivalents. These revolvers are sufficiently heavy to be enjoyable shooting with common .38 Special ammo. With heavily loaded .357 S&W Magnum ammo, recoil will be noticeable. With some practice, you will do fine. A four inch barrel would be about ideal. As you get more experience, you can then decide if you want to carry a revolver, use one for hunting, etc. You may at that point decide to buy another revolver more suited to those more specialized requirements. Sincerely. bruce.
 

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I prefer the 27s or 28s as I like the N size frames for target or hunting. Another one that is still somewhat in the family is the Dan Wesson 15-2. Can get a kit that has spare barrels and a barrel wrench to change them out. Accurate as any of them can be. Good luck on your decision. Would recommend as last thing to physically try to hold one and even shoot it if possible to make sure it fits and is comfortable.
 

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If I were looking, with your desires, I’d seriously look at a Model 69 or 686, L-Frame series. You can shoot 38’s &.357’s, the additional barrel/muzzle weight would minimize muzzle climb, and reduce felt recoil. The addition weight/size of the handgun is a non-issue, as you didn’t mention CC. They are very simply......a nice revolver! And no.......I don’t own one, so this is just my opinion! memtb
 
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Look for a good condition used model 10 (.38 special) model 65 (.357 / .38 Special K Frame) or model 686 (.357 / .38 Special L frame). 4 inch revolvers are fairly common. Many have been showing up in shops in the past year as trade-in and consignment offerings.

Be aware that current production revolvers are being made with a two piece sleeved (lined) barrel that is of new design. It basically keeps the rifled portion of the barrel as a single piece tensioned inside the barrel shroud. While the approach may prove serviceable over time, I'm not particularly impressed with it. My guess is that they came up with it as a cost cutting / waste cutting measure in the factory.

A number of used Model 10 revolvers came out of lease from police agencies in Victoria Australia a couple of years ago, and the stainless model 65 revolvers have been coming out of police service recently too.

This is my Australian return Model 10-11 Made in 1990:
494606
 

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I like model 10's and the prior M&P's. I have a four inch 10-5 and my wife has a six inch M&P. If you get one that shoots to point of aim it's all good but if you want to target shoot with different loads you'll appreciate the adjustable sights on later models.
 

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I bought a 19-4 that needed some TLC ,I bought a Colt New service in 455 eley and had the guy throw in the 19 for $200. It cleanup pretty good for a beater :)


thewelshm
 

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Plan B would be a 27-2

thewelshm
 

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I'll second a Model 10. "it does all things well" and unless you're bullseye shooting, you don't really NEED adjustable sights.

 
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