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Old November 6, 2012, 08:07 AM   #1
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Join Date: December 11, 2001
Location: Maryland
Posts: 1,829
Ruger Security/Service Six

I have a 3" S&W 65LS. I think the K-frames with a 3" barrel are just about the perfect all around revolver. It is heavy enough to be comfortable to shoot at the range with most .357mag loads, yet light enough to carry. It has enough barrel to get some velocity out its rounds (though a longer barrel is still better, it doesn't have the more pronounced disadvantages of the 2" barrel guns), and enough sight radius to be fairly easy to shoot accurately, but it is short enough to be pretty easily concealable. It handles and points almost perfectly (yes, this one is somewhat subjective, but it isn't only me, it is a commonly asserted virtue cited by 3" K-frame fans).

Unfortunately, they are pretty rare to actually be for sale, and when they are they tend to be quite expensive. Right now on Gunbroker there are only two 3" K-frames: a S&W 65LS listed for a starting bid of $799 and a buy it now of $825, and a 3" S&W 13 for nearly $900. The cheapest I've seen one go for recently is well over $500, and that seems rare.

Meanwhile, I'm seeing quite a few Ruger Security and Service Six examples on Gunbroker, in nice shape, for fairly reasonable prices (mostly $500 or less). I know the Security/Service Six are basically the same size and weight as a K-frame, and I know that they have a good reputation. So, I'm thinking it might be a good substitute and have some questions.

I know that most of the "3 inch" Security and Service Sixes are actually 2 3/4" (which is close enough IMO). I do see a few billed as 3". Did they actually make some in true 3", or are the 3" guns I see actually all 2 3/4" (unless custom jobs cut down by a gunsmith)?

If I get one of these, it will be in my carry rotation and will often be my camping/woods gun, it will be a working gun. I know it hasn't been in production for something like 15-20 years. Any mechanical device, even a well-made revolver, will need maintenance and sometimes have parts fail. How similar are these internally to the GP100 and SP101. In other words, would a smith would can work on a modern Ruger revolver be equipped to work on the Speed or Security Six? How hard are parts to get?

Holsters...I don't see many holsters that are made for these guns. Would a GP100 holster, SP101 holster, or S&W K-frame holster work? My guess is that the K-frame holster would probably be the best fit.

Grips...The standard wood grips look good to me, but how hard is it to find grips if I wanted something somewhat different (especially for carry)? I haven't really looked so I may have just overlooked them, but I haven't really noticed anyone making grips for them.

I guess finally, I'd like to know if my suspicion that it would be a good substitute for a K-frame is correct. Does it handle as well as a K-frame? Does anyone know the weight and measurements for a 2 3/4" or 3" Security/Service Six? Is it worth risking getting bit by the bug and "addicted" to yet another brand/model of revolver?
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