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Old 09-06-2012, 04:32 PM
 
4,755 posts, read 8,380,470 times
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Hi Folks,

I am thinking about getting a .327 Fed Magnum revolver. From what I've read, this caliber seems to have a lot going for it. I am trying to introduce my wife to the shooting sports and it will make me feel better when I am away from home. But she is terrified of guns. I was finally able to entice her to go to an indoor range with me and I let her shot my 3 different revolvers, the 686, model 19, and the 638 J frame, all with 158 gr SWC .38 spcl ammo. She has a small hand so the 686 was out. She can shoot the 19 and the 638 in SA mode (rhymes with "male chicken" the hammer). She liked the model 19 out of the two because of lower recoil, but it it's a bit heavy for her. The J frame is a good size for her, but with it was just too much recoil for her.

Forget about the semi's. She did not like the idea of slide move after pulling the trigger. I also doubt that her hands are strong enough to pull & release the slide.

So obviously a revolver is the right answer for her, but at what caliber? I had initially thought of the .22LR then I've read some good thing about the .32 H&R magnum. But then I read about the new .327 Federal Magnum which I really like.

  • It produces 1,300 fps out of a 3 inch barrel with the M.E. of 431 ft-lb with a Speer 115 grain Gold Dot JHP
  • Its recoil is less than half of .357 mangum
  • It can fire .32 H&R magnum and .32 S&W Long cartridges
So this is what I am thinking:
  1. IF I buy a .327 fed. magnum revolver, I can teach my wife to shoot .32 H&R magnum which is a lot less recoil. The .32 H&R is no slouch neither and she can use that caliber for self defense.
  2. WHEN I get to use it, I can use .327 fed. magnum for that extra Oommph
Does that sound like a good plan? Say, vs. buying a .22LR revolver? (have you seen the price of a DA .22LR revolver??? )

What other considerations that I am missing? Any recommendations on which revolver?
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Old 09-06-2012, 06:18 PM
 
Location: occupied east coast
824 posts, read 1,848,541 times
Reputation: 1621
Look, I am all for finding an excuse to buy a new pistol, but....

Have you given any thought to simply loading the 638 with a light load.

Contrary to all logic (believe it or not), the .38 spl. full wadcutter (target type ammunition) has a pretty good track record when it comes to defensive use.

As you may or may not be aware, this load has a modest recoil and is much less loud than more conventional defensive loads.

At the end of the day, it is still a larger bullet making bigger holes, with a bullet style that cuts a significant hole in tissue.

As final thought, I would personally obtain a box of "factory' ammo for this use, (as opposed to the frequently encountered reloads).

Feel free to ignore this advise if for any reason you have your heart set on a new pistol.
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Old 09-06-2012, 07:28 PM
 
Location: Southeast, where else?
3,914 posts, read 4,006,935 times
Reputation: 5781
Quote:
Originally Posted by HB2HSV View Post
Hi Folks,

I am thinking about getting a .327 Fed Magnum revolver. From what I've read, this caliber seems to have a lot going for it. I am trying to introduce my wife to the shooting sports and it will make me feel better when I am away from home. But she is terrified of guns. I was finally able to entice her to go to an indoor range with me and I let her shot my 3 different revolvers, the 686, model 19, and the 638 J frame, all with 158 gr SWC .38 spcl ammo. She has a small hand so the 686 was out. She can shoot the 19 and the 638 in SA mode (rhymes with "male chicken" the hammer). She liked the model 19 out of the two because of lower recoil, but it it's a bit heavy for her. The J frame is a good size for her, but with it was just too much recoil for her.

Forget about the semi's. She did not like the idea of slide move after pulling the trigger. I also doubt that her hands are strong enough to pull & release the slide.

So obviously a revolver is the right answer for her, but at what caliber? I had initially thought of the .22LR then I've read some good thing about the .32 H&R magnum. But then I read about the new .327 Federal Magnum which I really like.

  • It produces 1,300 fps out of a 3 inch barrel with the M.E. of 431 ft-lb with a Speer 115 grain Gold Dot JHP
  • Its recoil is less than half of .357 mangum
  • It can fire .32 H&R magnum and .32 S&W Long cartridges
So this is what I am thinking:
  1. IF I buy a .327 fed. magnum revolver, I can teach my wife to shoot .32 H&R magnum which is a lot less recoil. The .32 H&R is no slouch neither and she can use that caliber for self defense.
  2. WHEN I get to use it, I can use .327 fed. magnum for that extra Oommph
Does that sound like a good plan? Say, vs. buying a .22LR revolver? (have you seen the price of a DA .22LR revolver??? )

What other considerations that I am missing? Any recommendations on which revolver?
Here's a similar piece I wrote on the subject a few days ago....it's a very, very fine caliber with 4 caliber choices for the same gun as you point out....between the .32ACP, 32 Long, 32 H&R Magnum and .327 federal, she and you will find THE optimum cartridge for YOU and YOUR skills....all will kill....some will kill more effectively.....carry the .327 Federal during the day, load the 32 Mag at night or perhaps the 32 long....all that manstopper crap stops right at the point of proper impact...especially when you can repeat within a few inches or so split seconds later?

Great choice and I think, a very smart option...If I were going to buy another snubbie, I would opt for this one for all the same reasons we mentioned collectively.....I wish smith would bring it back in at least the 32 Mag level but, for the same money, Ruger has the .327 federal today....similar to that .357/.38 special argument....same price, why not have all the options?

PDD,

Not sure if it's too late but, based on your brief, real world description I implore you look at the .327 federal snubbie. Before everyone guffaws, hear me out. The .327 federal has 4 actualcalibers you can shoot from the exact same platform. The .327 federal will also shoot the .32 H&R magnum, 32 long and finally the .32 ACP. The point is that as you go down the stack, she will find the round that she can develop the balance between accuracy, recoil management, and firepower that works for HER and NOT us, the readers. Think about this, she can shoot the potent .327 in a daytime carry, and opt for the the very, very capable .32 H&R magnum. As far as the .32 long and .32 ACP? Well,recoil management is probably more of an issue here.

Regardless, don't listen to that .22 will just **** em off speech because it's BS. More people are actua
Ly killed by .22's than most calibers save the 9mm. I have yet to meet the brave individual who is willing to stand in front of the .22 round and let me rip 10 of those at them in 2-3 seconds...NOT counting hyper velocity ammo which rivals .22 magnum performance within 15 yards??? Any caliber will kill. It's just the odds go up dramatically with larger rounds hitting the same spot. But, better to hit someone center mast with a .32 ACP than hit one in the wrist with a .38?

Again, the same platform will allow her to calibrate herself to one of four cartridges that work for her and yet, allow her to grow into the very venerable .32 H&R magnum and/or .327 federal. And she will get 6 rounds out of a package USUALLY designed for five? 6 swings at bat is always better than 5? As far as the argument for cost to practice and the ability to get .327 federal or .32 H&R magnum ammo? Blaaaaaaahhhhhhh, cheaperthandirt.com and done. Besides, by your own admission you are not going to shoot enough to worry. You can afford it.

Look at one....research the .32 H&R mag...an often overlooked caliber. It's performance rivals a .38 and penetrates about as deep....faster round too.......then look at the .327 federal.....rivals a .357 mag up to about 80 percent. More than enough......

4 calibers, one revolver...check out rugers gp and sp 101 line...solid, value gun....I believe they are the last ones making this caliber...smith used to but dropped their very fine 632 10 years ago.....check out the calibers.....note the 6 rounds......note the ballistics....it's a winner and one of the four cartridges will serve you and her well.

Good luck.
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Old 09-07-2012, 08:13 PM
 
4,755 posts, read 8,380,470 times
Reputation: 3414
Hey Caleb,

Waddayaknow? Great minds think alike!

Now onto which revolver to buy? I am partial to S&W as you can see, but I fired the SP-101 before (in .357 mag ). They both are of great quality & reliability, no doubt. But what about less expensive brands like, Charter Arms? Taurus? Any opionions?
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Old 09-07-2012, 08:44 PM
 
Location: Columbia, California
6,662 posts, read 25,329,136 times
Reputation: 5066
Quote:
Originally Posted by HB2HSV View Post
But what about less expensive brands like, Charter Arms? Taurus? Any opionions?
I would rather buy a second hand Smith or Ruger than a new Charter or Tauras.
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:09 AM
 
Location: Florida & Cebu, Philippines
2,808 posts, read 2,234,893 times
Reputation: 2852
It will depend on what she will use the gun for. For home defense a 3 or 4 inch is great. For carry a 2 or even 3 inch and I know of women who carry 4 inch revolvers or full size autos in their purses.

I bought my wife an SP101 Ruger snubby and she shoots it pretty good since it is heavy and does not recoil much with .38 spl in it but is hard on the hands in .357 for her, yet she can handle it, so when home it is loaded with .357 but at the range mostly .38 and a cylinder of .357 to keep her knowing what they feel like.

As for the 327, I think it is a good round but too expensive to practice with. We had a S&W in 32 mag and it was too expensive to practice with when compared to 38's. My wife now carries a Glock 26 in 9mm or her SP101 with .357 in it.

If the model 19 is too heavy, try an older pencil barrel S&W model 10, or if you can find one, the same in a model 64.

I personally would stay away from Taurus or Charter for a long term ownership firearm and I do not own any of those and never would.
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:09 PM
 
Location: Southeast, where else?
3,914 posts, read 4,006,935 times
Reputation: 5781
Quote:
Originally Posted by HB2HSV View Post
Hey Caleb,

Waddayaknow? Great minds think alike!

Now onto which revolver to buy? I am partial to S&W as you can see, but I fired the SP-101 before (in .357 mag ). They both are of great quality & reliability, no doubt. But what about less expensive brands like, Charter Arms? Taurus? Any opionions?
Taurus over charter. Taurus is not your same Taurus as of 20-30 years ago. Their quality and innovation have truly improved but, they still suffer from inconsistency. If it's going to be the tru, self defense, better save my assets gun, splurge. Spend the extra $75 and buy the Ruger. Why take a chance? That said, I do own a used pt111 9mm from Taurus and it's fairly accurate. The trigger is just gritty with a long take up. If the trigger were better it would be very good.the brine straight 8's take some getting used to but, they work.

Bottom line? For self defense! I'd opt only for a Ruger or used S&W in .327 federal....stainless. My next revolver WILL be this model for this very reason.
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Old 09-16-2012, 06:34 AM
 
Location: Somewhere out there
9,616 posts, read 11,061,524 times
Reputation: 3717
Default "But... but... your honor! He was charging me when I shot him!"

I carried an S&W J frame in .38 SPl, an Airweight in alloy. Now I carry the same size and make but in Titanium and in .32 H&R. Now, if they offered it in .327 Federal, I might buy it, but then again, perhaps not. Once you have that heart-to-heart talk with yourself, you realize that, for self-defense purposes, you need a round that works very well, and controllably, out to, max, 40 yards, but more reasonbly, out to a staggering 5 - 10 yds or so!

After all, the legal ramifications of potting someone in the back when they are beating a hasty retreat away from you, and you still manage to git-'em @ ≈ 55 yds with a few stray rounds, but in their back!!!, is NOT going to go well for you in court.

Which, btw, is where 9 out of 10 shooting cases end up! And all sorts of things will be tried by the perp's lawyer to trip you up and turn the case around against you. For you to then enthusiastically mention you were using your latest hot and ultra-destructive handloads... ("Q: were you just looking for a chance to try out these dangerous hollow-point loads on my client, mr. ....?")

PS: Wrong Answer: ("I bought these really explosive internally serrated hollow-point bullets and loaded em up good'n'hot! You betcha!") isn't going to help your case! Better you always note, even at the time the cops come out to your home in the middle of the night, that…

"I was really frightened, and startled out of my deep sleep! This guy was in my room, in the dark, and making all sorts of growling and very frightening sounds, and I'm pretty sure I heard him say he'd kill me if I resisted. So I knew my life was in danger. your honor! And so, and only after I warned him twice (which, btw, you should do at least once, loud and clear, perhaps so that others in the house will absolutely hear you!...) I shot at him. yes, twice. I did it reflexly, to stop his advances, your honor. {Stop to sob slightly for dramatic effect..} To stop him from getting closer to me, you understand…")

Anyhow, that little superlight titanium Airweight J Frame is wonderful as a Concealed Carry Weapon. It fits into a small pocket holster, is totally innocuous, in .32 H&R Mag does NOT kick at all like even a .38 Spl. (and to make things worse, folks seem to want to carry the +P .38 Spl loads. Or to order theirs in .357 Magnum! Why? Those kick like mules!)

Not to mention that the latest .32 Federal offering from Ruger is in the SP101 chassis, which is significantly bigger than the ultra-compact S&W J Frame!

And, on top of all of those advantages, the little "J" does indeed carry 6, versus 5, rounds up it's sleeve! It does not recoil in any way obtrusively. If you are a handloader, it can also be very safely loaded up a bit from it's factory loads because the first revolvers for it, from Harrington & Richardson, were quite crude, metallurgically and engineering wise.

(PS: this is not my personal hotheaded handloading opinion. I load these .32 H&R rounds for my customers as commercial defense loads if they are going to be used in the proper revolver. Several recent handgun magazines have covered these very safe and also very minor & slight handload upgrades.)

A modern S&W premium will easily withstand another 100 fps over factory .32 loads, and this brings it up to a 100 gr bullet @ about 1000+ fps, minimum. In my blued Ruger Single Six with a 5 1/2" bbl, it launches that same load @ ≈1150 fps, and this makes that piece a great field carry gun!

No real need for the .327 Federal, except in a longer-bbl'd field gun. For personal defense, and especially for a woman slightly intimidated by recoil and noise, the existing .32 H&R Mag is very appropriate! Go for it!

1) http://picturearchive.gunauction.com...743d9392f4.jpg

2) Also available with the excellent Crimson Trace laser sight, a true middle of the night intimidator! http://www.pistolaccents.com/assets/...ace_jframe.jpg

3) http://www.genitron.com/HandgunDB/DB...2pd-163669.gif

You will not be disappointed with a small frame revolver in .32 H&R my friend! It's almost the perfect ultra-compact carry revolver cartridge. And it will most definitely stop an assailant's nefarious intentions, esp. a "double-tap" into the upper chest!

(BTW, always use factory-loaded or commercial ammo for your self-defense carry. Use of your own hand-concocted high-performance handloads will inevitably introduce some problems in your subsequent court appearance & defense. Better to re-direct the perp's lawyer to Hornady or Remington or whomever else, for their ammo marketed as specially loaded for "Self Defense", etc.

http://ts1.mm.bing.net/images/thumbn...6c0d939fc28912

http://ts1.mm.bing.net/images/thumbn...4cb3d930e7fc85

http://ts3.mm.bing.net/images/thumbn...804e6f0f50c668

Have a good'n! And stay safe!

Last edited by rifleman; 09-16-2012 at 06:46 AM..
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Old 09-16-2012, 04:01 PM
 
4,101 posts, read 5,894,804 times
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I would opt for a J Frame S&W over anything else if you want your wife to use it and enjoy shooting it. While the 327 Mag may be a good choice, I would also consider at S&W 351 PD, that is an alloy frame J frame S&W in 22 Mag caliber. These little revolvers don't have any recoil but the bullet has quite a bit more velocity than a standard 22 long rifle. Other wise, I would settle for a J frame in 38 special caliber. You want something she is going to enjoy shooting and can handle the recoil of without flinching. Remember no firearm is any good if you don't practice using it until you get proficient, compare the cost of 327 Mag ammo with 22 LR ammo, and 22 Mag ammo and see where you stand.
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