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Old May 29, 2012, 12:33 AM   #1
ZVP
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What's wrong with claiming a S/A for "Your Gun"?

I have battled with this subject both internally and with my shooting buddies for years. I have been told to get with the times and be reasonable because you can't keep up with an autoloader!
Fact is that I don't feel comfortable with anything but a Single Action Revolver and have comitted to this by outfitting myself with a 4 5/8" Stainless Vaquero .357. The Cartrige is a very powerfull load and the Vaquero handles it nicely plus it gives the option of using cheaper and lighter .38 Special ammo for fun/ pratice and the full power .357's for work.
I have no regrets for choosing to have 6 aimed shots and a little slower to operate action in order to have the gun which aI am the most comfortable with. Reloads are unquestionablly slower and tricker than just slamming a clip in, but you can reload pretty fast with pratice.
I have read that I am not alone in this choice and even GunSite Az. has a class on carrying the S/A as a concealed carry arm. From what I have read, tricks such as picking up 2 cartriges to reload really speeds the process up!
Am I crazy for choosing a 100+ year old action for use in this century?
I don't go looking for trouble but am confident that should it find me, I could return trouble positivelly.
The use of a familliar, praticed and regularilly shot revolver as a defensive piece exceeds the "any gun will do", train of thought. It's a well thought out personal choice.
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Old May 29, 2012, 05:42 AM   #2
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No you're not crazy. I would instinctively cock the hammer on a DA anyway because I never shoot anything in DA mode and in most scenarios you're not going to need any more than three shots.
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Old May 29, 2012, 05:51 AM   #3
4V50 Gary
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A SA revolver is better than a rock or a knifed- until you have to reload. Be sure you can hit a moving target with your first shots. By ou don't want to have to reload.
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Old May 29, 2012, 06:17 AM   #4
mykeal
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Have you really tried reloading your knife or rock? Reloading a S/A is way easier. And faster.

Seriously, carry the gun you shoot the best. If you can shoot a S/A revolver better than an autoloader (I know plenty of folks who are better shooters with a wheel gun than a semiauto) then by all means that's what you should carry.

My personal choice is a Smith 60; the only gun I shoot better is a 7 1/2" Ruger Old Army, which is difficult to conceal. I've learned to shoot the Smith double action but will choose single if I have the option.

The short Vaquero is a fine gun. I'd certainly consider it if I could conceal it as well as the 60.

And there's nothing wrong with the .357, except for the cost of the Gold Dots.
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Old May 29, 2012, 08:21 AM   #5
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I've posted pics of my main carry before... I'm confident 6 are enough Custom Ruger Montado birds head grip ( the Montado has the easier to thumb hammer position... better for CC IMO )

BTW... I requalified at the range for my CC license this last year with an old S&W #2 top break snubbie spur trigger single action in 38 S&W, & both shot better & faster than several of the 9mm packing 1st timers, several of which had problems ( most of which I think were limp wristing their compact 9's )... so while I could ( with my level of practice ) shoot much faster with my CZ Compact, or my Witness 10mm, but only if more than 6 shots were needed... I can shoot as fast for the 1st 6 rounds with the revolver, as I could with one of my autos... I'm quite confident with my Ruger Montado snubbie... same basic format I shoot CASS with so I feel I could hold my own...

& what's not to love about a stainless transfer bar ( safe to load 6 ) snubbie in the venerable 45 Colt round

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Last edited by Magnum Wheel Man; May 29, 2012 at 08:28 AM.
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Old May 29, 2012, 11:35 AM   #6
bedbugbilly
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ZVP - I don't think you're crazy nor do I think you are alone. I've always shot SA and am the most comfortable with that. I do have several"vintage" 38 spl Colts and S & Ws . . . but very rarely do I shoot them DA.

That said, I do have a semi-auto 9mm that I bought for CC - but a year ago, decided to get a 380 semi-auto because to the size of it and easy carry - I carry on the belt. After a month of it, I traded it for a Ruger LCR 357 to carry. Why . . because I was more comfortable with a revolver. The LCR is DA only but I practice a lot with it and am now used to the DA for SD purposes.

However . . . my favorite is my Ruger 357 Vaquero. I don't carry it CC as it has a 5 1/2" barrel. If I could find one with a 2 to 3 inch barrel, I can guarantee that it would be my CC.

In regards to re-loading . . . there are many opinions on this but for the individual person, the only one that matters is their's My LCR is a five shot. Yes, I carry extra cartridges. For me, if I can't take care of a problem (which I hope will never happen) with 5 shots, then more aren't gonna matter. In the winter, I'm in AZ about 40 miles north of the border. If we are out and about, then the semi-auto (15 rounds) goes in the car . . . mainly because most drug smugglers and bandits are often armed with high capacity weapons. However, for normal SD situations as would occur in the city, I'm very comfortable with my 5 shot revolver.

What it all boils down to is that you have to be comfortable and confident in what you carry and your skill levels. If it works for you . . . the heck with what others think. I've seen and been around fellows who have to have the best, most sophisticated and the latest trend semi-auto and they couldn't hit the broad side of a barn. I've also seen SA shooters over the years who not only could draw and shoot fast, emptying their cylinder but who were also accurate as heck. In the end, it's not about "quantity" . . . it's about "quality". Use what you're comfortable with and practice, practice, practice.
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Old May 29, 2012, 12:08 PM   #7
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Back in the day, I would have said go with whatever you want; but, times have changed. If you were to use your SA on a BG, I can just picture some bleeding heart attorney calling you a "overly zealous cowboy vigilante" because you didn't use a typical carry gun.
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Old May 29, 2012, 12:55 PM   #8
ZVP
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Lots of help!

Thanks guys because I really feel the best with my Single Action Vaquero stoked with some high power .357's . It just feels like second nature to operate it! I have no issues with thumb cocking and in a 2 hand hold can get a second shot off quicklly. My sights are regulated close enough for social work and with a powerfull round like the .357 good hits are GOOD hits.
I know the 4 5/8" is a little large to conceal but I have a nice sholder holster and am going to have a custom high ride built for right side carry.
Pratice is the key to what you should do with "Your" personal revolver and I do a good bit of shooting with the Vaquero. Yes I usually pratice with .38 specials but even good quality .38's are adequate S/D rounds as have been proved by law Enforcement for years and in one case, the Great Miami Shootout, the FBI load proved plenty lethal. However I do prefer the high end .357's for defense and the Stainless Vaquero handles their heavy recoil like a dream! I have a set of faux Stag frips omy Vaquero and they really help with control!
I have shot many autoloaders and have had my share of misfires except from one little Semi-auto that I own, The Berettia 21A in .22 LR. It is my Mouse Gun and I would depend on it up very close and as a last resort, because it WORKS!
You guys have made me feel a lot better about my decision to go with the Ruger, I KNEW you'd understand! Yes the bad guys have bigger capacities and some fancy stuff but do they shoot every week as I do? I think NOT. I try and pratice reloads though at our Pistol range, it's a Slow Fire Course so I don't get the Rapid fire training in. Thank goodness for an occasional round of CAS!
Thanks for the supportive replies.
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Old May 29, 2012, 02:11 PM   #9
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I carry a single action...OK, it's a 1911, but it's a hundred year old design. I usually don't carry an extra magazine. The odds of me ever needing to draw the gun are small enough - the odds that I'll need more than seven rounds are just vanishingly small. And I get the same questions about time to that first shot because I don't have a round in the chamber. I can rack the slide and be on target awfully fast. But I digress...

You'd be surprised at just how easy it is to conceal a fairly large handgun. There's a HUGE difference between what you think is visible and what people actually see. Unless you're a supermodel or a movie star, nobody is paying attention to you, and if they do, any bulge that they might see could be anything from a cell phone to a fanny pack to a medical device. I suspect that the last thing anybody thinks of is a gun. After several months of paranoia over whether or not my .45 was printing, I finally figured out that nobody cares. I think that you'll find the same is true for your Vaquero.
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Old May 29, 2012, 04:39 PM   #10
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When my brother was in the Coast Guard he took a job as an armed Private Security Guard. He shows up with his J P Sauer & Sohn, Western Marshall, 6" .357 which of course is single action. "You cannot have that", his boss tells him on the range where he was supposed to qualify, "you need a double action." Try me brother says. They shot the course and he carried a J P Sauer & Sohn, Western Marshall single action revolver on duty. Carry what you shoot best is all I have to say.

Back in uniform I had no problems carrying a 45, preferred it in fact and got good enough to go to All Navy matches with it and later as an Army Reservist went to All Army with it. BUT, my carry gun is a Dan Wesson .357. I can shoot it double action and in self defense courses I practice double action but most rounds out of that gun over the last 40 years have been single action. I like single action because I hate to have to shoot something twice and I am inherently more accurate when shooting single action.

So my vote ZVS shoot what you are best with and don't sweat what your buddies prefer. First rule is have a gun, all else is details.
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Old May 29, 2012, 09:07 PM   #11
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How many people actually carry extra magazines or even extra ammo for reloads in real life CCW? If that's the case, then a single action's disadvantages become moot.
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Old May 29, 2012, 09:23 PM   #12
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I'll carry my 1860 if it's what's loaded and handy when I'm leaving. But I have thought (as Zippy13 said) about what it would look like if I actually had to use it. I can just see the news headline now.
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Old May 30, 2012, 07:32 PM   #13
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But if you go to your wife's Christmas Party and have to shoot it out with merc........Oh, wait that was a movie. I nearly forgot.
If you get in crap with Bad Guys you'll do fine. If you try to shoot it out with SWAT, Marine Recon, Special Forces or Seal Team 6, they'll kill you no matter what you carry
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Old May 31, 2012, 12:01 PM   #14
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Quote:
I'll carry my 1860 if it's what's loaded and handy when I'm leaving. But I have thought (as Zippy13 said) about what it would look like if I actually had to use it. I can just see the news headline now.

"Mysterious Shooter Escapes In Dense Cloud of Smoke"
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Old June 1, 2012, 12:54 PM   #15
ZVP
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SHotgun made a good point, the size and armiment of your opposing force just might outgun and kill ya anyhow! Best not to shoot it out with Merc's,Cops or the Army.
For 1-3 opponents a S/A has enough ammo if you shoot it well. Personally, running is my most chosen tactic but given no choice and if I have to shoot, I think my .357 Vaquero will work for me.
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Old June 1, 2012, 05:23 PM   #16
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My objective in a SD situation is to be neither sporting nor fair.

And to coin a phrase: "Never bring a single action to a double-action gunfight,
or worse,... to an automatic gunfight."

Just 2 from a guy that loves the`51 Navy above all else, but carried a
Combat Masterpiece for 30 years instead --- and now that hated Glock 36.
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Old June 2, 2012, 12:46 AM   #17
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It's funny how experience changes fashion. By fashion I don't mean how things look. Even twenty years ago the average person who carried a handgun was likely carrying a revolver, did they all die off? Or did they have an epiphany about what is more likely to leave you standing after a gunfight. I marvel at the people I know who would still choose a revolver, but I think a lot of it is based on personal preference to the exclusion of common sense.

If I had to carry a revolver it would be a DA, it just doesn't make sense to me to have to cock the gun while someone is shooting at me. But thankfully I get to carry an automatic, and yes, I do carry one extra mag.
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Old June 2, 2012, 07:09 AM   #18
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Quote:
It's funny how experience changes fashion. By fashion I don't mean how things look. Even twenty years ago the average person who carried a handgun was likely carrying a revolver, did they all die off? Or did they have an epiphany about what is more likely to leave you standing after a gunfight. I marvel at the people I know who would still choose a revolver, but I think a lot of it is based on personal preference to the exclusion of common sense.
The truth is that the gunfight the average person prepares for will likely never happen to them, even if they are law enforcement officers.

If I knew for sure I was going to be in a gunfight, I'd take a rifle or shotgun, not a pistol.
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Old June 2, 2012, 08:47 AM   #19
Hawg
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Quote:
If I had to carry a revolver it would be a DA, it just doesn't make sense to me to have to cock the gun while someone is shooting at me. But thankfully I get to carry an automatic, and yes, I do carry one extra mag.
I like revolvers and I shoot in SA mode only. My instincts are going to make me cock the hammer no matter what the situation and a SA is easier to cock. I pulled sea/rail containers out of NOLA. Our yard was in the 9th ward, for those that don't know, the 9th ward is a really rough neighborhood. On the occasions I had to pick up after dark I always exited the truck with a SA in my hand because you never knew what you were going to run into. I've had to roust bums out of a sound sleep that decided an empty container would be a good place to spend the night. People would steal cars and strip them then dump what was left on the road our yard was on. You just never knew.
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Old June 3, 2012, 02:52 PM   #20
buckhorn
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S/A Revolvers

I traded my last D/A gun a while back. But when I had it I discovered I still thumbed the hammer back before shooting. {It was a Taurus .357} Now I own 5 handguns and they're all S/A. Double action shooting is just something I've never really done, even when I owned a D/A revolver. It just seems nature to me to thumb the hammer when I shoot.
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Old June 4, 2012, 08:25 PM   #21
Smokin'Joe
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Hawg, Most readers don't realize that NOLA stands for New Orleans, Louisiana. I know because I lived there for 46 years. I worked in an area near the Industrial Canal. Pretty rough part of town.
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Old June 5, 2012, 10:28 AM   #22
Hawg
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Thanks Joe. It's just common usage around here. I never thought about it.
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Old June 5, 2012, 11:31 AM   #23
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I sleep fine with a SA revolver in the nightstand and feel very comfortable packing one most of the time, For some urban settings I usally pack a bottom feeder but I wouldn't freak out if I was packin the SAA.
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Old June 6, 2012, 09:56 AM   #24
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I'm an IDPA shooter, and compete with !911's and occasionally my Glock. I carry a J-frame .38 most of the time and love revolvers in general. For the woods and as a Bar-B-Q gun, I know that I'm very well armed with my Vaquero in .45 Colt, the old SA revolvers will do the job! If you like 'em and can use 'em why not tote 'em!
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