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Old July 18, 2015, 01:38 AM   #1
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S&W 66 and navy seals


I swear I remember seeing pictures in a book by a retired Navy SEAL named Marcinko (sic) that showed a picture of Navy SEALS firing Model 66s.

Does anyone know if the SEALS used S&W 66 revolvers in the past or is it from a dream?

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Old July 18, 2015, 06:06 AM   #2
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I have heard they did. At least on the internet.

No idea if they actually did or not, but if you dreamed it, I must have too.
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Old July 18, 2015, 06:14 AM   #3
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Lots of information and probably some misinformation here:
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Old July 18, 2015, 05:18 PM   #4
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I was onboard ship for an exercise with SEALs in the late '80's and I asked a Lt what they were using. He specifically mentioned the 66, although I didn't actually see them. He mentioned their reliability in the conditions they were facing.
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Old July 18, 2015, 05:57 PM   #5
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There are SEALS, and there are elite SEAL teams. The guys on the elite teams carry anything they want. If it isn't a production item they can request it be built or modified to their specs. The regular guys have some discretion, but probably less so. In the book "No Easy Day" the author goes into some detail about weapon choices. He never mentions using revolvers, but I have no doubt they have been used in the past and if one were the best option for a particular mission would still be used.

At various times they have used just about everything made depending on the specific mission. For use in salt water years ago a SS revolver might have been a very good option. Maybe not the best option today if corrosion is the concern. I suspect the most useful aspects of a magnum revolver is #1, no shell casings left behind. And #2 situations where a longer shot might present its self and a rifle might be too cumbersome.
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Old July 18, 2015, 06:09 PM   #6
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There are SEALS, and there are elite SEAL teams.
How do you know this? I was under the impression that all SEALs are assigned to a SEAL team upon graduating from training. If that is not so, would you please give a reference to the correct information.
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Old July 20, 2015, 09:21 PM   #7
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I think he is suggesting that some SEALs are just nobodies and some SEALs are rock stars who get custom guns, basically. I don't put much stock into "operator legends" as I refer to them and so... who knows.
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Old July 20, 2015, 09:24 PM   #8
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A friend of mine was a SEAL and I remember back around 69 or 70 he was home on leave and picked up a 66 to take back with him. He said he could use anything he wanted to use as long as his next in command had no issue with it. He had permission to get that gun and take it back.
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Old July 22, 2015, 01:49 PM   #9
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There are SEALS, and there are elite SEAL teams.
How do you know this? I was under the impression that all SEALs are assigned to a SEAL team upon graduating from training. If that is not so, would you please give a reference to the correct information.
Upon completion of training all SEALs are assigned to a Team to finalize their full qualification. The only "elite" team, DEVGRU (SEAL Team 6), made up of several squads, is only selected from fully qualified SEALs. Usually after many years of being in one of the "regular" teams. Where once again you have to prove you're capable of performance at that level, and do so continually. I understand that that all SEALs have fairly wide latitude in individual weapon selection, with multiple weapons in each SEAL's arsenal.
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Old July 28, 2015, 06:05 PM   #10
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Back in the 70s and early 80s, the S&W 66 was almost impossible to get and was very expensive when someone did get it in. I couldn't get one, so I got some stainless Ruger Security-Sixes. Turned out they beat the S&W 66 in longevity and in the action -- not out of the box, but you could buy a Security-Six, then have a gunsmith smooth out the action and it still would be cheaper than an out of the box 66. Even so, I'd sure like to have one of the new Model 66s. It was one of the most beautiful guns ever made, and I highly recommended the Smith Model 13 .357 to many people as a “first“ gun. It was a great drawer gun.
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Old July 28, 2015, 07:05 PM   #11
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I've heard the same about the S&W M686 .357 revolver as well.

I highly doubt they would be used today. With things like Tennifer and NP3, we are now to the point where a far more effective semi-auto pistol can exceed the corrosion resistance of an SS revolver.
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Old July 28, 2015, 07:06 PM   #12
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Richard "Dick" Marchinko thinks an awful lot of himself.
Read one of his books, and you will see exactly what I mean.
Maybe, after reading that book, you will think as much of him as he thinks of himself.
Anything is possible.
Myself...I've only known two SEALs, and they were extremely down-to-earth, low-key guys.
Zero attitude...Polar opposite of Marchinko.
Maybe I just knew a couple of duds.
Or maybe Marchinko is an the previous governor of Minnesota.
I kind of lean towards the latter theory.
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Old Yesterday, 06:54 AM   #13
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I don't know about SEALs but grunts in Vietnam came up with some "different" guns:

I've seen 2" Model 10s, Smith 357s, Browning HPs, 44 Mags.......all sorts of weaponry.

The truth being, be cause they had them, doesn't mean the whole unit had them or they were issued. It means they had their folks send these guns to them. They weren't authorized but I never saw a commander in a grunt until that cared. If they wanted to pack the weight, and the unauthorized weapon gave comfort to the carrier they said nothing.

I thought about it my self, but failed to see any of those doing anything I couldn't do with my issued M1911A1.

I think now its harder to smuggle personal weapons into a combat zone. In some units it may be easier then others.

When I was in the NG I refuse to accept the Berretta, so when I carried, I carried my personal M1911a1. Not many knew it wasn't authorized, those who did, didn't care. All that really mattered is when I qualified, I shot expert. The real benefit (in peace time) was I didn't have to deal with power hungry armorers. Same with my rifle, I didn't use (in the Guard) a M16a1 like every one else, I used my Colt SP1. Again those who knew the difference didn't care.

In short, if you saw someone carrying a Brand X revolver in Y Caliber, no way indicates the Unit as a whole carries them.

Even as in civilian LE I tried several different guns, as long as I qualified with them it was ok. But I always ended up coming back to my issued service revolver, the Smith Model 28.

But people still go for the "cool" factor, whether they are SEALS, grunts or cops.
Kraig Stuart
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