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Old October 21, 2013, 07:57 PM   #1
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Ruger Redhawk VS. S&W629

Ive finally decided to add a 44 mag to my collection...I like Ruger and Smith...So, i went and handled both in a 4inch model (4inch is what i am after) both felt great...the ruger was heavier than the smith, it wont be carried so thats not really a problem...the smith and wesson had a little better trigger IMO, the ruger wasnt bad by any means, the smith just a little better....Both fit in my big bear hand great, maybe the ruger a little better than the smith....

SO, which did you choose and why? is there anything that should be known about either? thanks for any input
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Old October 21, 2013, 08:07 PM   #2
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Had both, kept the Smith. The Ruger is a good gun with some advantages over the Smith. This is truly one of those blonde vs redhead decisions. I just felt the Smith suited my needs better and was worth a little more money to me.

The trimmer, lighter gun and smoother action were more important to me than the Rugers strength and ruggedness.
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Old October 21, 2013, 08:33 PM   #3
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You're going with a four inch barrel, so likely you won't be going for many fire-breathin' loads. As such, maybe some double action shooting is on your agenda, using .44 Special velocity ammunition?

If so, the Smith has a much better DA action than the Ruger, and to me, is more sitable to DA work.

Not sure of the 629, but my Model 29s all had the wide target trigger. If this is true for the 629, maybe consider a narrower smooth combat trigger.

Maybe you might better be advised to go with a .44 Special.

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Old October 21, 2013, 08:48 PM   #4
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In all honesty, between the S&W Model 29 and the Ruger Redhawk I would choose a.......Colt Anaconda. Ultra-Bright Stainless, of course. The big snake will set you back a pretty penny but unlike the others, they continue to appreciate. When you finally sell it, you'll make money instead of lose it. That means ownership is FREE. And that beats even a lower starting price.

Unlike the common-as-dirt everyday, garden variety S&W and Ruger guns, the Colt is already a classic in its own right, as desirable for it growing rarity as it is for its surpassing quality. Hell for strong, smooth as wet ice, lovely to behold, and unmatched in action, Anacondas fairly drip with class.

Guns aren't shovels or rakes or screwdrivers. They're not just "tools." There is no pride of ownership with a Allen wrench. A tire iron says nothing about its owner's sense of perception, of beauty, of value, or worth. A gun can do so much more for its owner than just shoot. A firearms that can evoke pride of ownership in you, and admiration and desire in others is a gun really worth having.

Choose wisely.
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Old October 21, 2013, 09:15 PM   #5
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Posts: 461 will be another "just for fun gun" mainly...i have a bit of property here in Oregon...i can and do shoot off my back portch often, and have a range up the hill...I have no real reason for choosing the 4inch other than all my other revolvers are 6+ or snub nose....i like far as Da/SA i shoot SA mostly probably 70% of the time...i do have a gunsmith that i have used for years and do have the option and funds of having a trigger job done on either if i felt it needed.

horselips...i would love to own any of colts snake guns (a python in royal blue especially) but i shoot my guns, a lot...while they are fantastic to look at and shoot on occation...its not somthing i would feel good about taking out every week/ everyother week and shooting a bunch..

Are the Rugers known to be more stout? as i said i will be shooting it a lot like i do most of my firearms...
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Old October 21, 2013, 09:25 PM   #6
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Are the Rugers known to be more stout?
Short answer seems to be, yes.

But the Smith & Wessons are, for the most part, stout enough.

And generally considered to be more... refined.

Try to shoot one each...

Heck, it's your money... buy one each .

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Old October 21, 2013, 10:29 PM   #7
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I was in the same boat a few years ago. I love S&W triggers. But I had to go with the brute strength and reliability of the Redhawk.

I bought it mostly as a fun gun at first. But it's a four inch Redhawk. I carry it hunting all the time now in a Simply Rugged holster.

I have seen N-frames rattle loose, even the model 27's. I've never heard of a a Redhawk shooting loose. The Redhawk cylinder is quite long so those 320+ grain loads fit fine.

The Redhawk trigger can be vastly improved with Wolfe springs. A little polishing and new springs does wonders to both DA and SA trigger pulls.
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Old October 21, 2013, 10:33 PM   #8
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If you rarely shoot full .44 magnum loads then the S&W is tops. Excellent accuracy, excellent feel, great SA trigger.

But if you intend on shooting alot of .44 Magnums I'd get the Ruger. Exceptionally strong, quite good accuracy, and very easy to disassemble. In fact if you are going to shoot alot of he-man loads, I'd get the Super Red Hawk in .454!

For my needs the 629-1 I use often is it. 4 inch bbl is plenty for me.

But if I lived in Alaska I'd get a 5 inch Ruger Toklat! Coolest gun made (yes it's a .454 that can shoot .45 LC and not a .44 Magnum but that is the way I'd go.)

Ot if you really have the money, get both! Get a 629 AND Toklat!

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Old October 21, 2013, 11:07 PM   #9
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I got my 629 (8 3/8" barrel) in 1984. Why? Because that's what "Dirty Harry" Callahan used lol. Seriously.

What can I say? I was young.

I still have it. It's pretty much a safe queen now. But I do bring it out for a shoot now and again. It has a sweet trigger on it. Accurate as hell (I used to shoot silhouettes with it at 100 yards - open sights.) I consider it something of a novelty gun these days. I would like to get a 629 Classic with a 5" barrel. That would be much more practical.
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Old October 22, 2013, 01:53 AM   #10
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Ruger Redhawk VS. S&W629

Can't go wrong with either. I traded away a RH 4" that was very accurate. What was I thinking?! Last year I bought another .44, this time a Smith Mtn Gun. These days I don't plan to shoot as much full power magnum loads so the lighter weight and trim barrel lug and nice trigger are welcome.

I would handle both and get the one with the trigger you like the most.
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Old October 22, 2013, 05:53 AM   #11
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i shoot SA mostly probably 70% of the time...
The "hump" on the double-action was put there to maintain aim when shooting double-action and it is a disadvantage over the curved grip of a single action when shooting the D.A. single action. Therefore, you may want to consider getting a .44 Mag. in single action. It the idea of a single-action does not appeal to you and you still want a double-action with which to shoot mostly in single-action, then it is likely you want a double-action, "just because" (emotional reason, not logical) and then it does not matter which you choose. Just choose the one that has the most visual appeal for you. Heck, most of our guns are just toys anyway.
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Old October 22, 2013, 06:44 AM   #12
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Like others before said, this is a chocolate vs. vanilla dilemma.

I like the looks of the Ruger better and this would be my choice. S&W equally good if that is your pick.
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Old October 22, 2013, 09:13 AM   #13
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Its already been said, but I'll agree with those who say the Smith is smoother and "more refined" and makes a better toy and target gun. I got my Ruger to hunt big game, so it was the better choice for a long and steady diet of beefy handloads that I would not consider shooting in a Smith, and abuse by the elements.
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Old October 22, 2013, 09:41 AM   #14
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The "hump" on the double-action was put there to maintain aim when shooting double-action and it is a disadvantage over the curved grip of a single action when shooting the D.A. single action.
Am curious what you consider the disadvantage to be (when shooting SA)?
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
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Old October 22, 2013, 11:49 AM   #15
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Both actions can be tuned nicely. I have a 25-2 and a Redhawk. Both have spent quality time with Arkansas stones and Wolf springs. The resulting double action pulls are very similar.
The Redhawk has more weight for the recoil to push around. That will calm things down a bit.

There is a difference in single action pulls. The Smith can be a bit lighter due to its separate trigger spring. The Redhawk uses a single spring action. That isn't a major concern in this case. It's not a good idea to have an ultra light trigger in a heavy knock around gun with stiff recoil.
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Old October 22, 2013, 02:23 PM   #16
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I took a somewhat odd route. In revolvers, I'm a Smith & Wesson guy, through and through, and MORE, if possible. Also, I prefer double action revolvers so much that it's not even a contest, and I also shoot my revolvers double action around 90-95% of the time. Quite simply, these are just my preferences.

Even still, I have a GP-100, a Dan Wesson, a Colt, and a Taurus. All have a place. But beyond those, I have a bunch of K, L and N-frame Smith & Wesson revolvers and they are always my first choice.

When I decided a .44 Magnum was to be added, I had two options, IMO-- same ones you're looking at. I wanted either a 29 or a Redhawk. (or a 629 or Stainless Redhawk, of course)

I ended up going with a 7.5" barreled blued Redhawk. Why? These reasons all played a part in my decision:
  • .44 Mag has always been overly "punchy" to me. I wouldn't consider myself "over sensitive" to felt recoil, and I enjoy every shot of 10mm, .460 Rowland, .460 S&W Mag and .500 S&W Mag I've ever launched, but it has ALWAYS seemed like .44 Mag hits me in a nasty spot. So I wanted big and heavy. And the Redhawk wins in that regard
  • The older S&W .44's have a slight reputation for being "not as stout" as other, newer .44's no the market. Such is backed by Buffalo Bore, who specifically excludes older ones from some of their ammo. So I was swayed a bit by this, most likely FAR MORE than it actually matters. I would imagine you need to put a whole lot of nasty through an older 29 to loosen it. But it played a part in the decision
  • Redhawks are typically lower in price/cost, everything else being equal. And I found what I considered to be a pretty decent deal on a very lightly used one, and SN look-up says it was made in 1985. I paid $500 for it about a year & a half ago. Snagging a Model 29 (of any vintage) in as good a shape as this one for $500 can be done, but I think you'd need to find a really nice deal to pull it off.
  • Variety is fun for me. No doubt, I enjoy the DA system on a Smith & Wesson far more than anyone else in the game, but I enjoy variety in my safe. This revolver has proven to be a lot of fun.
First time I shot it was with the original grips and though it was big and heavy, it was MURDER on my hands. Just awful. I quickly replaced those cute tiny wood panels with a classic Pachmayr decelerator and that helped. I also sent it off to Mag-Na-Port and had the four-port job done to it, and that has helped also. I still find that it punches more than I like. (it simply -HAS- to be me at this point!) So mostly, I run it with a great LSWC load that I crafted to run 870 FPS. Which, YES, is a really wimpy load for a .44 Magnum. But please understand, I didn't craft this load because I can't or won't shoot it otherwise... I did this because my club's steel plate range will not allow or handle horrendous magnum loads and this load is a heap of fun for mowing down steel plates.

I still run heavy stuff in it, just not a lot of it. It's absolutely capable. It's accurate. The guts are 100% original and the double-action is -NOT- "Smith & Wesson"-like, but it works and I can adapt to it. Curiously, the single action trigger break feels far heavier than I believe it ought to, but no matter because I typically shoot in DA anyhow.

For me, the Redhawk was the answer.
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Old October 22, 2013, 04:32 PM   #17
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From what I've read.....

The general consensus seems to be if you want to shoot maximum loads and use 340 grain bullets to get the Ruger Redhawk ! These are exactly the reasons I prefer my S&W 629 because I have no need for such loads when even my hot 44 special loads using the 255 gr Keith style bullet will handle whitetail deer and most black bear as a sidearm ! A Freedom Arms model 83 field grade SA in .454 casull would be my choice for a more powerful handgun (if it was needed ) ! Go with either one that you fancy !
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Old October 22, 2013, 04:45 PM   #18
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Dear Ruger,
Please make the Super Redhawk with a full underlug.

Sincerely, The Whole World!

But seriously, I love the GP100, even the battered and abused range variant (the only one I have ever shot), super accurate, super sturdy....full underlugs are a requirement for double actions for me, and I like the "Combat" grip of the GP100 and the Colts as opposed to those of a Taurus (can't explain what I mean by that, not my term I had a salesman at the gunshop where I rented the GP100, I mentioned I loved the grip on the GP100 because it reminded me of the Colt Anaconda and he said they were both "combat style grips unlike the Taurus's")

So with that said I would say go with the Smith and Wesson for the full underlug.....or the anaconda as well. ...or heck, get all three
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Old October 22, 2013, 07:04 PM   #19
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well....i think im going to start looking for a redhawk
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Old October 22, 2013, 07:37 PM   #20
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Well they aren't 44's, but I have a Ruger Blackhawk (4-5/8" Bbl) and a Smith & Wesson Mountain Gun (4" Bbl) both in 41 Rem Mag.
As many before me have stated, the Smith is more refined with a better trigger,
but recoil is more manageable with the Blackhawk (plow-handle grip).
I love them both equally, and have been searching for a 41 Mag 5.5" Redhawk in blue/wood for years,
but they are always priced out of reach for me ($1000. + ).
I was considering a 44 Redhawk to satisfy my craving, until I find a Redhawk in 41.
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Old October 22, 2013, 07:46 PM   #21
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i think im going to start looking for a redhawk
Good luck, new ones are almost impossible to find.

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Old October 22, 2013, 08:39 PM   #22
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Found one...550 bucks....can't post a pic from my phone for some reason
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Old October 22, 2013, 10:03 PM   #23
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My vote goes to Ruger but I have to admit I don't own a SW. I have a Super Redhawk that is a dream to shoot especially after putting in the 10 dollar Wolf spring kit. This thing shoots really nice groups with every different reload I've tried so far, at 50 yards I'm getting a 3 inch group using a red dot and a rest.

I also just bought a GP100 357 mag, looked at the Smiths but I just couldn't do it. Haven't shot the GP yet but I have little doubt I won't like it.

Go for a Ruger, pick your flavor.
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Old October 23, 2013, 09:57 AM   #24
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If you can find one, try a Redhawk with 8-10k dry fires or live fires (or combo), or a decent trigger job.

I found myself facing the same choice as the OP a year or two ago, ultimately went with the Ruger since I was looking for an all weather field gun.

My first initial is S, my last name starts with a W. AFAIK my closest blood relation to Mr. Smith or Mr. Wesson would require going back to Adam and taking a different fork, but for many many years all my handguns had my initials stamped on them at the factory.

Once I had about 3k rounds through my Redhawk I felt a LOT better about it, closing in on 10k rounds + dry fires now and I have a really nice action.
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Old October 23, 2013, 06:09 PM   #25
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