1. Are you a current member with account or password issues?

    Please visit following page for more information

    Dismiss Notice

Home/Outdoor Defense Gun

Discussion in 'Handguns' started by WildEMT, Aug 31, 2008.

  1. WildEMT

    WildEMT Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    826
    Likes Received:
    10
    I'm finally taking the handgun plunge. I really want only one handgun and I want it to cover all my needs: namely, home defense and protection in the woods. I am looking for reliable and simple. I have the field narrowed down to two choices:

    Ruger New Blackhawk - 357mag - 4.75 barrel
    Glock 32 - 357sig

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    21,161
    Likes Received:
    12,084
    Re: Home/Outdoor Defence Gun

    For home and for the woods I would go with a revolver. To be honest I would not go with the Blackhawk in this case. If you are carrying in the woods you could probably easily carry a 6 inch revolver. You will find that they are much easier to aim due to the longer sight radius.

    I personally for a woods and home gun go with a Smith & Wesson, Ruger, or Colt Double action revolver instead of a single action. I would not be able to argue against a 5 inch J-frame, or a Manurhin revolver either but the Manurhin will be very expensive.

    Autoloaders are great in a urban setting but distances tend to be longer in a rural setting and longer barreled revolvers really come into there own under these conditions.

    Why have you limited yourself to those choices? It took me 30 years to find out what I liked.
     
  3. WildEMT

    WildEMT Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    826
    Likes Received:
    10
    A longer barrel is a good consideration with the revolver. Both of the choices leaned toward a more-compact size for ease of storage in a pack/saddle bag or around the bed at home. Didn't want to get into something too large or heavy, that could be cumbersome to pack and carry. However, I take your good insight to heart.

    The Blackhawk was one choice because I can't imagine a safer handgun than a single-action revolver. Especially with Ruger's transfer-bar system... it's hard to be the safety factor. A double-action is a possibility... however, at that point, I would start leaning toward a semi. Double-action revolvers (or larger single-action) start packing on the ounces pretty quick. The single's are light, but I'd sacrifice a bit of the weight for the safety-factor.

    So, the two were primarily chosen on the criteria of packable-size, relatively light weight, knock-down capacity, and safety.

    I am very open to more suggestions and model lines to look at. Those two were at the top of my little brain, but I am happy to hear from the experts!
     
  4. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    21,161
    Likes Received:
    12,084
    Take a look at a Smith Wesson Model 60 with a 5-inch barrel.

    My favorite woods and field gun was the no longer available S&W 19 with 6 inch barrel. I had tried alot of other guns and for the areas that I was in it was for me easy to carry and easy to hit with. Both the 19 with 6 inch barrel and the 60 with 5 inch barrel will be just as safe as the Blackhawk and will be lighter and less bulky.

    I have had a ton of different automatics and for urban carry they have been fine. Sigs, Glocks, CZ's, Astra, Hk, Colt. In the field they lose their advantages a bit.

    I used to carry a Glock 19 and would carry it in the city. When I was in the field I would frequently carry both. On any shots that were difficult to make the 6 inch revolver always got the non, I simply could not hit the same targets with the Glock 19 that I could with the S&W 19. There was no comparison and ease of hitting when the targets are past 25 yards and are small. In fact at any distance I could get on target faster with the long barreled revolver as well.

    Modern Double action revolvers have fireing pin blocks, they are not going to go off by a hammer impact just like the modern single actions. Those have been in place for my lifetime. The double action pull is long enough where accidental discharges are not likely to happen. In the field most of the shots will be fired single action anyway but strange as it seems most double action revolvers have shorter lock times in single action guns than dedicated single action revolvers. Lock time does affect ones ability to hit difficult targets.
     
  5. WildEMT

    WildEMT Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    826
    Likes Received:
    10
    Wow. Thank you for taking the time to impart some of your experience (and to decipher my random previous post). While I have shot and handled plenty of pistols, I do not have an ounce of "lived" experience with any. So, I'm going from my limited experiences and recommendation of (military) friends. Clearly, their usage and needs vary a bit from my own. And, their knowledge of revolvers pales in comparison to yours.

    I will look straight away at the S&W Model 60's.
     
  6. ran23
    • In Omnia Paratus

    ran23 Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    Messages:
    5,795
    Likes Received:
    4,730
    S&W M19----yes, 6" and 2 1/2". I miss those pieces so much. Got a M65-4" I think, for a field piece. Still miss that 6" tube.
     
  7. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    21,161
    Likes Received:
    12,084
    Military needs, Police needs, and Civy usage don't always mesh with each other but there are some overlaps.

    When I was very young I was around Gary Anderson and Bill Blankenship for a short period of time. Those were two well know MTU shooters in their day. My father had a 1911 during his second and third time in the military. At one point surprisingly he was issued a revolver for his office with instructions to shoot anyone that tried to gain unautorized access.

    Standardization is needed in the military to reduce logistical problems but utility sometimes trumps standardization. A military handgun while a sidearm and not considered a mainline weapon might be called on for suppressive fire, for CQC action, going into tightly confined areas, actually there was a revolver that was in limited issue for tunnel rats but most used 1911's.

    In a non-urban setting you will not be using suppresive fire to allow others to manuver or fire for effect at cover as you will not have the ammo for that kind of activity and do not have others to fall back on.

    With a field gun if you do shoot a living object it is more likely to be an animal than a human. Light fast moving bullets tend to do better against soft armor than slower moving heavy bullets. The slower moving heavy bullets however are more effective for larger creatures like something that wants to stomp on you.

    The revolver for a field gun gives you ammo options that you will not have in an autoloader. If you are in black bear country 180 grain .357 can do the job though a little bit light. If you have to dispatch a 4 footed creature that is injured or is trying to stomp on you (actually happens more than bear attack, moose are one of the most frequent killer of humans in the mammal world in their areas) the 180's are one of the best choices. The old Keith style lead semi-wadcutters are favored by many. For against humans and for mammals 100 pounds or less the 125 grain hollow points are highly favored.

    I completely understand the use of automatics pistols in the military and for urban uses. The rural civilian world can be a complete different animal.

    If I were a soldier issued a handgun I would prefer an autoloader. If I were a police officer I would also prefer the autoloader but I would want a J-Frame in my left pocket as well. At home I feel just as safe with a revolver as I do with an autoloader. In the great outdoors alone everything changes for me.
     
  8. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    21,161
    Likes Received:
    12,084
    I should have asked this question. What state are going to be using this in and what is the terrain like? Are these trails or think brambles that are difficult to navigate. Are there frequent areas with 50yard plus visability.
     
  9. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    21,161
    Likes Received:
    12,084
    Yep, those 6 inch tubes were fantastic. Natural pointing, nice long sight radius reducing the effort on your eyes a huge amount. Very nice and easy to hit with. Not so long that you couldn't easily carry it on a belt like some of the 8 inch plus guns can be.
     
  10. Mud

    Mud Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    144
    Likes Received:
    0
    What are your threats?
    Do you deal with Bears/ MTN Lions
    or strung out Meth heads??

    Depends. YOu cannot go wrong with a Good .357 wheel gun. and if you get the right Black hawk you can get a 9mm Cylender and shoot it on the cheep. YOu have the versitality of light .38 or brutal 180 grain .357 mag.

    However ou cannot question the relibality of the glock line of pistols.
    I like the 19/23/32 size because it is easy to hide incase you are around the greenies. Also you can get a lone wolf bbl in 9 mm and shoot it on the cheep. or a Glock 23 bbl and shoot 40 cal out of it
    And with Double Tap ammo the . 357 sig is a viable woods gun..
    Oh and dont forget to throw an advantage arms .22 kit in the bag so you can shoot critters for the pot or pratice cheeper.

    So i say BUy both and decide which you are gonna carry based on your trip..
     
  11. saniterra

    saniterra Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,560
    Likes Received:
    591
    I love my automatics, Sigs, CZ's and so forth in 9mm, 40 S&W, 357 Sig. I can shoot them as accurately and quickly as necessary in a domestic or urban setting. I would not choose an auto - except my Ruger and Browning .22's - in the woods. They work just great for small game. If I was afraid of an animal encounter - wild boars, bears large and small, moose, mountain lion, I would go for a .44 Mag - specifically the Ruger Redhawk in stainless and 5.5" barrel. Garrett makes a cartridge that won't even fit in a S&W .44 that could take down a polar bear or large grizzly if you had to. But it's not a good self-defense gun in urban settings, Dirty Harry aside. I believe that different guns are for different purposes and critters. One size just doesn't fit all.
     
  12. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    21,161
    Likes Received:
    12,084
    One of the reasons I asked what state he was in was to see if he had larger critters. Large North American Cats are actually fragile to modest cartridges. if larger things are around I would also go with .44. My preference would be Smith just for commonality with other revolvers that I own and have owned.

    In states without the larger creatures and I am not out with the intent of hunting. I think .357 does nicely.
     
  13. Mud

    Mud Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    144
    Likes Received:
    0
    I just re- Read your post.

    Your looking for a one gun do all?? Do you have any long arms?
    What area do you hike in mostly.

    Personally i would lean toward the Auto if it was a DO ALL gun. but if i planned on hiking with big mean 4 leged things id get a long gun.
     
  14. WildEMT

    WildEMT Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    826
    Likes Received:
    10
    The area of use for this purchase will be in the northern Rockies (Montana, Idaho, Colorado, Wyoming... in that order). So bears, lions, and moose (the worst of all) are certainly a possibility. I realize that a 357 has limited application on a cheesed-off Grizzly. Another sacrifice of trying to do it all in one pistol (more may come later as budget allows). Typical wooded trails with some clearings. 50 yards would be possible at points and would be the maximum distance I would expect.

    The 357/38 cross-over weighs heavily on my mind and steers me away from an auto. Being able to chamber both without an extra cylinder/barrel/whatnot is just a major plus.

    So, from all of your excellent thoughts (which are reinforcing a lot of my thinking), I'm leaning more towards a revolver for the "do-all" with my intended usage.

    For long arms, I have a couple of shotguns and a 30-06. The 30-06 travels when appropriate. I'm looking for something that can ride on the hip or in the pack when I take the family up for some Cuthroat fishing.

    Any experience with the Ruger GP100 line?
     
  15. Bubba

    Bubba Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2008
    Messages:
    404
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you are ONLY worried about hunting critters (where you sneak up on them) I'd agree a revolver is OK..

    But you mentioned home defense use for this pistol too, and there are two legged bad guys (with their own guns) in the woods , no?

    So.. my 2ยข is stick with the Glock

    As mentioned you can get replacement barrels that change it's caliber (to .40 or 9mm) for city use
    You can carry the glock easily and quickly draw one when needed. It's easy to carry a few extra magazines as well

    Why limit yourself in a fight for your life to 6 shots and a complicated reload?

    Moose? how often do moose attack people? and if they did I think you'd want a rifle or shotgun
    Grizzlys? I'm not sure how often they really attack, I'm in AZ, but I assume a rifle / shotgun is in order for them too


    Rugers are fine revolvers, I'd take one to the range, but I'd rather CCW a Glock and a lot of ammo instead for the same weight
     
  16. saniterra

    saniterra Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,560
    Likes Received:
    591
    I own a GP100 in stainless with the four inch barrel. It's a great gun - accurate, reliable and strong enough to handle the most potent 357 commercially available loads you can find. My one complaint is that the front sight is too thin - your sight picture through the rear sight notch requires real concentration to center up the front site accurately. I would recommend replacing the front sight on either a four or 6" barrel model. You can get the same strengths with a S&W 686 or other L frame model. The Smith is generally more expensive, but is available in 7 and even eight shot models and there are more custom grips available for the Smith.
     
  17. jsco25

    jsco25 Empty Pockets

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2007
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would go with a Smith and Wesson 686 Plus that holds 7 rounds. In a home defense situation you probably won't crank off more than two or three rounds before the bad guy takes off or is put down. Also if you can't hit someone with 7 rounds, you shouldn't be cranking off 15+ with a Glock. That's a lot of rounds going through your neighbors homes too. With a revolver you don't have to worry about it jamming, and if you have a round that doesn't fire just keep pulling the trigger. In a home defense situation it just has to work, and you could get a lot of different malfunctions with an semi auto. A 686 is a great all around firearm for defense and hunting. For a dead nuts reliable gun get a good revolver. I own several Glocks and my 686 is a lot more accurate than they ever will be. Nothing wrong with the Glocks but in my opinion smith and wesson revolvers are better made than the Glocks and have been around a lot longer to pass the test of time. But whatever you get go get some training and get comfortable with it.
     
  18. SheepDog556

    SheepDog556 Empty Pockets

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Messages:
    78
    Likes Received:
    0
    Super Redhawk
     
  19. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    21,161
    Likes Received:
    12,084
    Moose, not that often but it happens more often than other mammals in the wild. Police have frequently dispatched them when they enter populated areas. They have killed people even in downtown areas. There was a case where a moose killed someone on a university campus. Moose that have been fed by humans have become dangerous, Moose that have calves are dangerous. I once saw an article that moose where Canadas most dangerous animal. Moose kill more humans that bear and mt lion combined. Wolves don't count because we can't document a wolf ever killing a human. In Alaska moose have killed sled dogs tied to their sled.

    True it is not likely to be attacked by a moose but when people start taking about defense against animals, it is the moose that is more likely be be needing defense against.
     
  20. WildEMT

    WildEMT Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    826
    Likes Received:
    10
    In my couple of "encounters" with moose, they are ill-tempered, stubborn, and not afraid to tangle with humans. One female was completely ready to charge and trample (I just left the area quickly). I would hate, HATE to get into them during rut or between a momma and her baby. Big and dumb and not to be underestimated. They are plentiful in western MT, where I do a lot of hiking.

    This sounds plenty true to me. :D

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't they document the first unprovoked wolf attack in Canada just a year or two ago? I read an article on it... I'll have to try to dig that up. Some guy was out camping with his buddies, wandered away to relieve himself and never came back. However, still, very rare.