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Old November 11, 2012, 10:25 PM   #1
Pfletch83
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The Smith&Wesson Governor

Is in my opinion the best handgun for close range defensive use,it offers more projectiles going down range than other more established handguns.

The range is limited but so are most defensive encounters.
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Old November 12, 2012, 08:05 AM   #2
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Persistant, I'll give ya that.
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Old November 12, 2012, 08:27 AM   #3
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I've tried to stay out of these conversations, but.. here goes.

While you may be correct about "more projectiles downrange", I always come back to the overall view of the weapon. In my opinion it is too large to be considered a viable SD kind of handgun. And this is strictly from my looking at them in stores and in print.... I've never shot one.
I agree that if you used a load with multiple single round balls, you could probably get pretty good accuracy with it at "gunfight distances". I think with smaller shot, you will probably get the rifling inspired donut shaped patterns, which may or may not be effective.
This gun reminds me a little bit of the Walker colt pistol... it was the most powerful pistol of its time, but it was just too big to carry around with you.. I believe it was designed to be carried on your horse, within easy reach, but certainly wasn't something most people would have tucked in their belts when "going to town"...
Again, these are just musings on my part, not intended to restart the whole offense/defense of these guns.
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Old November 12, 2012, 08:37 AM   #4
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Quote:
Is in my opinion the best handgun for close range defensive use,it offers more projectiles going down range than other more established handguns.

The range is limited but so are most defensive encounters.
And what happens when one of those down range projectiles strikes a target other than who you intended. More projectiles means more exposure to collateral damage. to me the idea of using shot shells for defense in anything other than the home is asking for trouble as you have very limited accuracy even if properly aiming and not panicked. Granted something is better than nothing but the 410 craze i feel is just that its a firearm that tries to fill multiple roles and does a so so job at them.

I would carry one for hiking and camping especially in the southwest where rattle snakes and mt lions are prevalent
.
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Old November 12, 2012, 08:49 AM   #5
Pfletch83
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What about missed shots from standard handguns?

Those can go much further than intended.

One need only look at the shooting that took place in NYC's Empire state building ,the cops were using a well made and well designed handgun,shots were missed and people got hurt.

Last edited by Pfletch83; November 12, 2012 at 09:01 AM.
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Old November 12, 2012, 10:25 AM   #6
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Go to youtube, bring up hickock45's review. then get back to us. You might have a different understanding.
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Old November 12, 2012, 10:58 AM   #7
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Pfletch, you do not have much firsthand experience with them do you?..... They are a poor choice for anything other than snake extermination. (which I will be the first to admit that they do very well)

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Last edited by allaroundhunter; November 12, 2012 at 12:29 PM.
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Old November 12, 2012, 12:15 PM   #8
hornetguy
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And what happens when one of those down range projectiles strikes a target other than who you intended.
Agreed... there is that possibility. I don't know how this gun performs, but I've seen some targets shot with other multi-ball rounds, and at shorter (SD) distances, the spread between the two or three projectiles is usually not much.. an inch or two, if memory serves. This is the only reason I could see using a gun like this. Smaller shot sizes are likely to be more of an irritant than a deterrant, I think.
Personally, I would rather have and use a lightweight semi-auto .22 lr that holds at least 10 rounds. I know that I can keep all 10 rounds in the head area of a silhouette target at 7 yards, pulling the trigger about twice a second. I know that in a lethal encounter, most rules go out the window, but I think a flurry of .22 bullets might be pretty effective.

Of course, my first choice would be a 12 ga pump, seconded by a good 1911 style pistol... but that wasn't what this discussion was about.
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Old November 12, 2012, 12:17 PM   #9
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Didn't you just start two threads about this that got closed?

I't may be your opinion but experts will disagree with you. I personally think they are a joke and there only practical use is loading it up with snake shot for woods carry.

Quote:
One need only look at the shooting that took place in NYC's Empire state building ,the cops were using a well made and well designed handgun,shots were missed and people got hurt.
If they were using shot shells far more people would have been inured from missed shots.

Last edited by Dragline45; November 12, 2012 at 02:00 PM.
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Old November 12, 2012, 12:20 PM   #10
Hal
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Quote:
Is in my opinion the best handgun for close range defensive use,
That's your opinion and you're entitled to it....

If you have one,,,,hang onto it...

In a hundred years or so it might be a valuable oddity - akin to the LeMat
(another multi projectile flop)..

Anyhow exactly what are you basing your opinion on?
While were at it,,,let's look at the LeMat as an example.

If a shotgun pistol was such a great idea....why didn't more companies copy the LeMat?
Why didn't the military embrace the idea?
Why didn't the Ithaca Auto & Burgler spawn copies from other companies?
Granted, the Ithaca stopped production due to the NFA,,,,but,,,it'd been around for more than a decade prior to that...
Why didn't the Remington and Winchester multi projectile loads take off and set a standard for self defense ammunition?

Seriously - I'm not trying to be a PITA...
I'm just trying to point out that there's a huge amount of historical information available that doesn't support your opinion.

If you want to get a Gov,,hey,,knock yourself out,,,it's your money, buy whatever you want.
But - saying it's "the best" , just because it puts more lead out w/one pull of the trigger, just don't cut it....
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Old November 12, 2012, 01:11 PM   #11
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Agreed... there is that possibility. I don't know how this gun performs, but I've seen some targets shot with other multi-ball rounds, and at shorter (SD) distances, the spread between the two or three projectiles is usually not much.. an inch or two, if memory serves
true and in all my 45acp tests out of a 1911 they are all in a 1.5 inch group. like you said though in a sd situation all rules are out the window but if that's the case the most valuable things have already been lost. the ability to see a dangerous situation and removing yourself from it before it escalates.

Quote:
Smaller shot sizes are likely to be more of an irritant than a deterrant, I think.
the idea being the small / more numerous shot is more likely to strike something vital. so if your only getting a 2 inch spread that is out the window and you have lost the precision of a well aimed shot.
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Old November 12, 2012, 01:18 PM   #12
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Did my phone take me back in time. Wasn't this already closed.

Forget the governor I'm waiting on them to come out with a "president" or "5 star general" hear those with let you either shoot a 40 bofors round or a 40mm grenade.

Sigh......
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Old November 12, 2012, 01:19 PM   #13
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Quote:
the idea being the small / more numerous shot is more likely to strike something vital. so if your only getting a 2 inch spread that is out the window and you have lost the precision of a well aimed shot.
But they are also far less likely to penetrate and reach the vitals. Birdshot out of that gun would have a hard time penetrating skin past 15 yards, which means that even inside of 7 yards if it does penetrate skin, getting to the vitals will be a struggle.
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Old November 12, 2012, 01:20 PM   #14
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Pfletch
In your experience, what kind of ammo do you typically shoot thru your Gov and, if I may ask, what types of groups and patterns does each ammo produce at what range?

Is it safe for me to assume 5 - 7 yds out to 25 yds? (latter may be a stretch for self defense, but you never know and you should know your .410 patterns max distance)

A very serious question. Could be a life or death matter if one is banking one's life on that revolver (and I'm just nosy). If you're to sell others on your concept, help us out a bit please.

.45acp? 230 gr down to 165 gr. FMJ or JHP or both
.45LC? 165 gr., 200 gr., 225 or 230 gr.
2-1/2" .410? buck shot and slug(?).

Please respond w/ answers at your leisure... photos are always a plus as well. I looked thru your other threads and perhaps I failed to spot this type of shared knowledge to back your claim. If so, please direct me.
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Old November 12, 2012, 01:35 PM   #15
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Some cool guns you could give me only to sell it to buy others, but that to me is a keeper only if you gave it to me, I'd keep it forever. Like I said said you could give me one. I'll say this, it's on my way long list.

I like it alot. If your like me, shoot the hell out of it and get back to us.
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:19 PM   #16
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This is one that is not on my list BUT it'll shoot a 45 Colt for 2 legged snakes and a load of #9 shot for crawly snakes. You can't really say it's no good for self defense.
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:26 PM   #17
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There is a major difference between "no good" and "not the best."

We can certainly say it is not the best. I wonder how many threads the OP intends to start, claiming it is the best...
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:38 PM   #18
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I got yelled out for my assertion of "ignorance claimed another victim" last time, so I won't say that again.

However, it does seem like there is a parallel with fans of this gun, and lack of experience or understanding of firearms. I don't think its a coincidence.
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:48 PM   #19
Baba Louie
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gotta get in on this one before it gets outta hand!
Then please don't let it get outta hand. I think I'd really like to know the darned things capability or limitations from a member here who has one and knows it and is willing to share objective facts, not generalizations or a subjective "mine is best" (always a pet peeve).

IIRC, Pfletch has put down a hog with it, so he's got that going for him. But self defense against someone using lethal force against you isn't quite the same... maybe (like I'd know... maybe said porker was coming at him w/ tusks snapping... dunno).

I just want to know what it can do with the myriad of rounds available to it, not that I'm going to rush out and buy one. Altho the freak factor is high with this one and it is made by a company I do respect... so the possibilty exists. Probability factor is low without supporting anecdotal data, so sell me Pfletch.

Or not.

X-Frame stretched out... right? But no .460 or .454 through it...
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:49 PM   #20
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Here is something I typed up last time. IMO, its easy to dispell the myth of the governor/judge being a superior SD firearm. However, for the record, I like it better than a single shot gun or a 25 auto for SD. Its also better than a bolt action sporting rifle for SD :P but beyond that?

The statements regarding lack of facts surrounding the issue is complete irrational non-sense. There are plenty of facts; the real issue is how important you may think they are or are not, and whether or not you understand what they mean:

1) The S&W governor has a 6 shot capacity, and the judge a 5 shot capacity.
In contrast, a double stack semi in say 9mm often has 2x to 3x the capacity. Even like sized 45 acp semi pistols (such as the glock 21 and S&W M&P 45) offer 12 rds (or more) as standard.

2) In studies about shootings involving police officers, 30% is the average hit rate. This refers to shootings where the police are being shot at. Policeman are often, (not always) trained better than a citizen with a pistol. In a governor, this would mean if fired 6 times, only 2 or less are likely to hit. Here is an interesting post by one of our moderators on the subject of hits in a SD scenario:

http://thefiringline.com/forums/show...ghlight=33+hit

3) Carrying buckshot seems to rectify the situation in #2, but buckshot increases the likelihood of collateral damage exponentially. Using quick math, 4 38 cal buckshot BBs are 300% more likely to hit something on accident once fired compared to one projectile from say a 9mm handgun. This makes for a most precarious CCW/SD scenario.

4) If you draw your governor/judge in a SD encounter, you are likely to fire in DA mode. Of course you can cock it for SA, but generally this will not be achieved and for other reasons, it is often not a good idea. Even if you fire the gun once in SA (not likely) the next shot will begin as a DA. A 1911, and other semis which are DA/SA only have a DA pull initially, with each subsequent shot being SA thereafter. While some of the DA accuracy would rest on the skill of the shooter, SA pulls will generally make a gun easier to shoot accurately compared to DA pulls. Accuracy can be had in DA mode, but this is more challenging and requires more practice.

5) The governor is a scandium frame with a weight of 29.6 oz. As we go up the power spectrum, the felt recoil increases. That is true for any gun. Some 410 shot shells are much more powerful than others, and the 45 colt in a cowboy action load compared to a 45 colt from a SD round manufacturer is big difference. So, as said, going from lower power rounds to higher power rounds increases recoil. The more you increase recoil, the slower your follow up shots become. Remember that police studies show a 30% hit rate in high stress situations. A quick follow up shot can never hurt and sometimes a miss will make the follow up shot necessary.

6) Regarding the governor as a CCW: 29.6 oz unloaded, 8.5 in long, with a height of 5.5 in. A glock 21 45 acp (for comparison) weighs 26.28 oz unloaded, 8.11 in long with a height of 5.47 in. All data taken from manufacturers websites. The glock 21 holds 13 rds.

7) When comparing bullets comparable in size to the buckshot BBs, 9mm and 38 special, (or any of the plus P variants of those cals) there is much greater penetration than the penetration seen from 38 cal buckshot rounds fired from a revolver.

8) Using data from double tap.com, a 9mm + P 124gr bullet fired from a G17 (a fair comparison for overall size to the governor/judge) yields an energy of 473 ft. lbs. From the same site, the 230 gr bonded defense load yield a muzzle energy of 521 ft. lbs. The idea of 45 being a much better man stopper isn't as true now a days as it was during WWI or WWII.

9) Revolvers have been around since 1836, and shotguns, at least in concept were around longer than that. It has then taken approx 186 years at the least for this concept to be born.

10) Semi auto pistols are standard for a high percentage of armies in the world. They are also standard for many police departments in the US. This is for many reasons.

11) The MSRP for the Governor from the S&W website is $769. Currently there is a S&W 64 38 special (smaller than the governor, but with 6 shots of 38 special) for $269 on gunbroker. There is also a brand new glock 21 for $560. Of course on gunbroker, there will be shipping and transfer fees. Shipping is usually $30 or less and transfers are usually $40 or less. The governor is more expensive than many other SD options.

12) Unless you practice, a reload using a magazine from a semi pistol is quicker than a reload in a revolver.

So what does this all mean? Its all fact. Apparently these facts will mean different things to different people. So as I said, its not that there are no facts surrounding these questions, its more of a question of interpretation of the facts.
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Old November 12, 2012, 05:50 PM   #21
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X-Frame stretched out... right? But no .460 or .454 through it...
No, its an elongated N frame, which is a Z frame. The Z frame and X frame use the K/L frame grip type however.
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Old November 12, 2012, 06:49 PM   #22
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9) Revolvers have been around since 1836, and shotguns, at least in concept were around longer than that. It has then taken approx 186 years at the least for this concept to be born.
As an FYI the Thunder Five came out in 1992.
That flop beat the other two flops to the market by two decades...
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Old November 12, 2012, 07:29 PM   #23
Pfletch83
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I don't take offense to what others have said.

I remember when Glocks were thought of as junk plastic guns,but after a few decades look what most are buying these days plastic wonder 9's ( yes I include .40s&w and .45 acp versions)

The Governor and judge revolvers will prove themselves to be no different.

Folks even had problems with cartridge guns at first.

This is just another step in the evolution of the defensive handgun.
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Old November 12, 2012, 07:33 PM   #24
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I'm not sure why its necessary to keep making such claims when we all know you feel that way. You have made a decision on the issue, and its fine, cause its your life, your weapon, and you deserve choices. No need to keep restating the same opinion while trying to sound revolutionary.
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Old November 12, 2012, 07:45 PM   #25
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If one wants to find something positive about a short barrel revolver that fires .410 shot: I seem to find a huge load of these at used gun stores at a discounted price. I don't see any positive application of these except as a "recreation" gun, something to fool around with at deer camp.
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