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Old February 21, 2013, 11:57 AM   #1
ZVP
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S/A versitility

I have owned and carried S/A revolvers all my life and am convinced that this style makes for the ideal trail gun.
I carry either a Ruger Single Six or a Ruger Vaquero .357. Both revolvers give a broad range of ammo suitability , the Single Six handles anything from CB Caps to snake loads in the LR cylinder (and any of dozens of regular .22 lr, short and long ammo) plus the additional Magnum cylinder doubles as a fine hunting/ self defense caliber!
The Vaquero is likewise versitile and you needen't change cylinders to go from .38Specisl to .357 Magnums.
Both revolvers pack and point naturally and don't weigh too much to ride on the hip or in a sholder holster all day. I just bought a copy of a 1880's sholder rig for the Vaquero and love it! The weight is suspended so's you don't even notice anything but a little bulk under your arm, and it's totally out of the way of a rifle or shotgun!
Flawless function, reliability and proven dependability are what a S/A has going for it. In this day ofmaybe actually NEEDING a weapon along the trail to fend off feral dog packs or even 2 legged vermin you can bet your life (and your family's) on a single action!
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Old February 21, 2013, 12:35 PM   #2
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If you are looking for an arguement, good luck with that. I think you are absolutely correct on the SA in both of these calibers. In big bear country a 44mag SBH might be better, but it is still SA. Also you could shoot 44Sp out of the SBH. I don't have any of the mentioned guns, But I have a Ruger convertible 45Colt/45acp that I really like and would feel well armed with.
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Old February 21, 2013, 12:35 PM   #3
rclark
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Couldn't agree more ZVP. I sold off my last full size DA revolver a few years ago as it was gathering dust in the safe. Only DA I now have is my .44Spec Bulldog only because they don't make a big-bore SA in that nice light form factor. I have a .44Spec New Vaquero Sheriff, but you can 'feel' and see the difference in weight and size. I think a birds-head grip frame would help here. Anyway, sticking with the Bulldog for CC with 4 in the cylinder... for now. Anyway, for what I do and enjoy the SA is all I will ever need or want in the handgun category. Dandy plinking, target, camp, fishing, hiking, and hunting handguns. Simple internals to break down and put back together for cleaning. Do some BP shooting with them... Plus they look right and feel right in your hand. What more could you ask? I don't need to empty 18 rounds in 2 seconds, or 12 shots in 2.99 seconds.

Each to their own though. And some shooters have completely different needs like LE or Military where the SA is a bit dated for that use.
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Old February 21, 2013, 12:41 PM   #4
Magnum Wheel Man
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I've got a "couple" single actions, & even use one as a CCW gun about 1/2 the time...

... only disagreement here, is for use as a defensive weapon in dangerous game country... there I prefer a double action big bore snubbie... but for 99.9% of the trail pounding I do, a single action is just fine... now that I picked up a pair of stainless Vaqueros in 357, I can't decide which to carry, as I really also love my pair of Single Six magnums in 32 H&R magnum as well

one of my CC guns

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Last edited by Magnum Wheel Man; February 21, 2013 at 03:03 PM.
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Old February 21, 2013, 12:46 PM   #5
BigJimP
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I think it comes down to which ever gun you shoot the best....and can handle the most comfortably...

....I don't think there is anything inherently wrong with a Single Action revolver.../ ....but I know my reloads on a good DA/SA revolver like a S&W is way faster than I can accomplish in my single action Freedom Arms...( now reloading may not be a factor worth considering...) ....because it all may be over before you would consider a reload with either a SA or a DA/SA revolver...

But for a "woods gun" ..or a defensive revolver.../ a K, L or N frame S&W to me are good alternatives as well...especially in a 4" for close quarters...in .357 mag or .44 mag....

but I think you can make a good argument either way ....
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Old February 21, 2013, 12:54 PM   #6
L_Killkenny
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I'd really worry about any gun nut that didn't have a soft spot for SA's. They're the essence of cool. But I'm not foolish enough to think that they're any better at anything than a good DA and worse for somethings. Good enough though? Heck yes.

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Old February 21, 2013, 05:54 PM   #7
g.willikers
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Since a DA can be fired way faster, as much as I like SA revolvers, too, the DA wins my vote.
You mentioned being able to defend against a feral dog pack.
As fast as dogs are when attacking, and how much faster a DA revolver is, the difference between DA and SA might very well make the difference between life and death.
The same for two legged predators.
While a SA can be fired almost as fast two handed, there's no comparison one handed.
I fire a DA about three times faster, one handed.
And a confrontation with a dog pack can easily result with a dog grabbing an arm, leaving you fighting one handed.
Or grappling with another guy for your gun.
Anyhow, that's how I see it.
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Old February 22, 2013, 04:01 AM   #8
JD0x0
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Who says you can't fire a SA fast?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgav7...KLX-pA&index=5
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Old February 22, 2013, 04:18 AM   #9
ballardw
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The main issue with SA is if you need to reload quickly you can't. Some of the loads in my Blackhawks will fall out of the cylinder but not any of the ones designed for serious social purpose. So there are two actions per chamber in addition to the gate and cylinder rotations for reloading. Which adds up to a lot more time than a DA with speed loaders.
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Old February 22, 2013, 07:59 AM   #10
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In some Clint Eastwood western in the final bad guy massacre scene he uses some kind of single action wherein he reloads by quickly swapping out preloaded cylinders. Just Hollywood theatrics?
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Old February 22, 2013, 08:16 AM   #11
JimPage
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It was not unusual to carry an extra cylinder for cap and ball revolvers, but most cowhands back then didn't have cash for an extra cylinder.
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Old February 22, 2013, 10:37 AM   #12
g.willikers
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"Who says you can't fire a SA fast?"

While a SA can be fired plenty fast two handed, there's no comparison one handed.
And it's easier to learn to shoot fast with a DA.
The fellow in the video has been doing it awhile.
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Old February 22, 2013, 01:49 PM   #13
jad0110
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Quote:
In some Clint Eastwood western in the final bad guy massacre scene he uses some kind of single action wherein he reloads by quickly swapping out preloaded cylinders. Just Hollywood theatrics?
The move was Pale Rider, and the gun was a Remington 1858 New Army. It was not Hollywood theatrics, though as another poster pointed out, most back then couldn't afford extra cylinders.

For most of us, the double action is the preferred revovler for self defense. But I know a couple of guys who know how to run a single action, and they are plenty capable of protecting themselves. Incidentally though, both carry a Kel Tec as a BUG (I think both used the P3AT, but one of them may have been a P32).
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Old February 22, 2013, 01:56 PM   #14
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So, we have our preferences. I think a big bore single action is a superb sporting revolver, and the Rugers are usually accurate enough for great plinking and informal target work. Try one two-handed on steel plates sometime. I fire both at the range and much confess I get a little impatient at reload time with the singles. Then I tell myself how much I like the vintage looks and operation of these arms, so "just calm down and load the thing." Historically speaking, it seems to me the S&W Model 3, especially the Schofied, was far superior to the Colt SAA as a battle arm, but the Colt was the winner in terms of acceptance. There were other reasons for this, but if I were in the cavalry back then, I think I might have wanted the S&W.
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Old February 22, 2013, 02:51 PM   #15
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The advantage of a D/A revolver depends on the shooter. It takes a lot of practice to shoot DA accurate enough. If a person can shoot rapidly double action at 10 yards that is considered good. A lot people can't. With some practice a person can shoot a S/A two handed very accurate because of a shorter trigger pull.
Just depends on the person.
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Old February 22, 2013, 03:26 PM   #16
BigJimP
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It just means you need to go to your local range 2 or 3 times a week.....and practice.....in and out of a holster, some double taps, some reloading drills....

No downside to that .... ( especially if you reload ) !
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Old February 22, 2013, 03:53 PM   #17
eldermike
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Years ago when I first began shooting light loaded hard cast bullets in my 44 mag SBH it became my favorite plinking gun. My single six 22 is the perfect fishing/hiking gun. But after much thought if forced to one hand gun I would keep my security six and just miss the heck out of the single actions.
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Old February 22, 2013, 04:08 PM   #18
wooly booger
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I hunt and fish all over the country.

My main go to gun in bear country of Montana is a Ruger Super Blackhawk in .44. I also own a Blackhawk in .357, a Single Six, and a Bearcat. The Bearcat has a permanent home in my flyfishing chest pack. I have used it a few times on snakes and even on a beaver.
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Old February 22, 2013, 07:51 PM   #19
327 FM
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My absolute favorite handgun are Colt SAAs. There is just something about how single actions fit in the hand.
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