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Old November 23, 2015, 10:46 PM   #1
Panoply
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Chiappa Rhino: A General Consensus?

Hello Y'all,

I was wondering what the general consensus among serious gun buffs is as regards the Chiappa Rhino. I am by no means a beginner shooter and am decidedly a 'revolver man,' but have no experience with the Rhino and so know little about it. I've got some 'gun money' (I'm sure everyone here knows what I mean) and have been looking at either the 4" or 5" Rhino, hard. The other possible firearms I'd buy would be an Arsenal AK-47, a plain jane model but one of the higher quality ones. The Arsenal would cost about half again as much as the Rhino, unless I get lucky at the next few gun shows, but it's a possibility. The AK platform is not a high priority as I have a pretty low 'scratch that itch' ratio when it comes to that type of firearm and I've already got an AR (S&W M&P15 OR kitted out with Troy folding battle sights w/ tritium). A third and final option is the much less expensive NAA Pug or, perhaps, another NAA mini-revolver in .22 mag. The ones that come with interchangeable cylinders for either magnum or LR is a distinct possibility for standing in for the Pug.

I'm mainly interested in y'all's opinions and info on the Rhino, however. I was a bit surprised when a search of this forum drew a blank when I searched for it.

Thanks, As Always,
Pan

PS: My carry is almost always the sent-from-Heaven S&W 642 loaded with low recoil Federal Hydrashoks. If not it, then - much more rarely - my CZ P-07 in 9mm. The Rhino would NOT be a carry for me, though an NAA mini would be a superb secondary and may fill in as a primary when needs must. What excuse could there be to NOT carry such a fine little revolver?!
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Old November 23, 2015, 10:50 PM   #2
James K
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I don't know the status as of now on the Chiappa guns, but if I found one and had some spare bucks, I would probably buy it. If it succeeds, I have the equivalent of a Colt Paterson. If it fails, which I think it will, I have the equivalent of a Dardick gun. Either way, it should be worth more in the future as a collector piece.

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Old November 23, 2015, 11:14 PM   #3
mkiker2089
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I think it will succeed because Chiappa has enough money to see it out. I haven't fired one but if my finances go well next year I may own one.

Right now Chiappa has two problems.

1- get it out there. It needs to be Cabela's and Gander Mountain so people will see it. They need to advertise it also.

2- Price, they really need to get that price down a bit. It's in a limbo zone between higher end revolvers and the exotic priced customs. A few hundred dollars would make a world of difference.

I do think there is room in the market for them especially since most gun owners in the US have several firearms each.
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Old November 24, 2015, 12:30 AM   #4
Andy Blozinski
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I pack the 4" barrel nickel plated Chiappa Rhino as my daily concealed carry. I swapped out the stock rear sight for the rear sight off the 6" barrel model because it has the fibre optic rods and it's easier to see. I wanted to get the stage 2 trigger, but they preferred I just send it in to them to be lightened. They paid all the freight and didn't charge me. It came back seeming about the same, but it started lightening up and it's pretty decent now. This is actually my first revolver, so it still seems much compared to my Walther PPS light trigger...but it really is better. I can cock the rear "hammer" (that isn't the true hammer) with just my thumb now.
They had serious trigger issues when they first came out. That and a few other issues were apparently taken care of in the second generation. I did some research before I bought it and problem comments decreased radically when the second generation pistols were the subject.
Noticeable differences for the second generation:
The stage 1 lighter trigger was made factory stock.
Front sight has a fibre optic rod and a seriously changed design.
Cylinder is designed to take supplied full moon clips.

One annoying thing I noticed when shopping for one is that many people selling the second generation were still using old stock photos of first generation pistols. The change in the front sight made it pretty obvious. I had to get written confirmation of what they were selling by asking about the front sight and the moon clips.

I really enjoy it. There's pretty much no muzzle flip. I can fire .357 magnums from it single handedly from either hand or with both hands and it is accurate. I took it to an inside range with no speed firing limitations and pretty much fired it with .357 magnums as fast as I could pull the trigger and kept all my shots inside the 6" sticker at 7 yards. I can make the rounds touch if I slow down to maybe one second per shot or so.
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Old November 24, 2015, 12:40 AM   #5
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I think they are darn nifty, but priced too high for me. If I had the money, though, there would be a 2" Rhino on my hip right now.
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Old November 24, 2015, 08:48 AM   #6
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I think it's an interesting design. Certainly would be attention grabbing at the range. As others have said and it's true for me, a bit too pricey. If it grabs you and you have the bucks, go for it. Be sure to do a review and take lots of pictures.
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Old November 24, 2015, 10:06 AM   #7
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I guess I'm an old fart... but they are just ugly!
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Old November 24, 2015, 01:26 PM   #8
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A General Consensus?

....Meh.
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Old November 24, 2015, 05:03 PM   #9
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As you can probably see, you are not likely to get a "general consensus." Just like with any other gun, car, truck, breakfast cereal, etc., it all comes down to personal preference. Get what makes you go all smiley inside, and don't worry about the opinions of others. It's your money, spend it how you want.
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Old November 24, 2015, 06:05 PM   #10
Panoply
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Thanks, Y'all - Keep 'em Coming!

Hey BigMikey76

I'm a 76'er, too. Bicentennial babies. Makes us more patriotic.

I was asking as I wanted to see what kind of reputation they had. I think the looks are killer. A little bit science-fiction which is right up my alley. The recoil will no doubt be a big change for me. One I expect will be an improvement. The 'not-hammer' will also take some getting used to, but not too much. The cylinder release won't make a damned bit of difference to me, though I wonder why they chose to go that route. The better to un-cock the gun would be my best guess.

No negative reports, outside of aesthetic ones. Looking good for Chiappa. Still, there are the other two contenders for this holiday time gift to myself. The Middle/High end AK-47 and the NAA mini revolver.

If I do go with a Rhino I'll be sure to let y'all know what I think of it. I expect I'll love it! I'll be going with either the 4" or 5" both choices in black. Don't like shiny guns. Know one guy who buffs his guns so much they look chrome plated! Not for me, not since I dropped out of pimping anyway - lol.

Thanks and if you've got info, lay it on me!
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Old November 24, 2015, 06:41 PM   #11
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Quote:
I was asking as I wanted to see what kind of reputation they had. I think the looks are killer. A little bit science-fiction which is right up my alley.
I am am in full agreement with you on the looks of the gun. Some say ugly, I say unique and interesting. As far as reputation, I have heard mostly good reports, especially regarding the effect on muzzle rise. Like I said earlier, if I had the money, they would have my money
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Old November 24, 2015, 07:34 PM   #12
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I'd buy one. Honestly, I would rather pay $700 or less for it....
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Old November 24, 2015, 09:38 PM   #13
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Interesting design that they seem to put in a lot of overtime on making it as ugly as possible. Not for me.
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Old November 24, 2015, 10:00 PM   #14
James K
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I have not fired one, but have handled them. Ugly, yes, but that doesn't count. Awkward and bulky do, and odd feeling. The whole idea is to reduce barrel flip on firing by bringing the barrel line closer to the center of gravity. But the result is too many things different, including a complex mechanism that seems to be a matter of design on the fly, fixing problems as they cropped up, and of somehow making things work around what is basically a solution to a non-problem. An example of the SMIC principle - stupid makes it complicated.

(I am reminded of the Schwarzlose blow-forward pistol. There was no real reason or need for such a gun, but Schwarzlose got the idea of a fixed breech on an auto pistol and produced a weird design to try, not very successfully, to make the concept work.)

Jim
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Old November 24, 2015, 10:21 PM   #15
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I think I would go with the AK, you can get another revolver but the way things are going you may not be able to get an AK in the future.
As to the Rino, I could take it or leave it. I admit I have never shot one (handled one once) but I know it wont work in any of my other holsters and the grips are also limited to swap them out and getting parts to repair a shooter may be hard in the future if they dont really pick up sales....Good luck with your decision.
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Old November 24, 2015, 10:29 PM   #16
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Quote:
too many things different, including a complex mechanism that seems to be a matter of design on the fly,
I regularly see comments about how needlessly complex the Rhino is, but I really don't see it. Sure, the parts are arranged differently, but, with the exception of the bar that connects the external not-hammer to the internal actual-hammer, the parts are pretty much the same as in a traditional revolver. I can't say for certain that the altered arrangement doesn't have the potential to be problematic, as I am certainly not a gunsmith, or even close to an expert, but they really don't seem to be any more complicated to me, just different.
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Old November 24, 2015, 11:26 PM   #17
Andy Blozinski
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I had a 2" hammerless Rhino that comes with the rubber grips. I bought the 4" nickel plated one barely used (only 36 shots fired) for $750. The stock wooden grips on it were surprisingly better. I think the fuller grip (it's also a much different general shape) resulted in reduced perceived recoil. The Rhino has recoil as the laws of physics still apply. It's just that the recoil is pretty much straight back, thus no muzzle flip. My Rhino actually makes me kind of lazy. If I'm not paying attention when I switch to a conventional pistol, the first shot or two catches me off guard with the muzzle flip.
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Old November 25, 2015, 07:26 AM   #18
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Ugly, yes, but that doesn't count.
It does with me.

While I will buy a worn, even abused "ugly" gun, I don't see much sense in buying one that starts off ugly and rust could only improve.

But mostly, I know nothing about the company, except that they seem to make a lot of airguns, blank pistols, and inexpensive 22's

So, if I have a choice of spending seven, eight hundred bucks on a gun with a known reputation, or one from a company I know little and nothing about, I'm going to pass on the unknown. If it had a price advantage, it might be different.
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Old November 25, 2015, 08:26 AM   #19
ScaryWoody
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Looks good with Colin.

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Old November 25, 2015, 08:38 AM   #20
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Have one and shoot it

I bought one of the first generation 200D 2-inch .357 magnums. These original ones were DAO. I shot it a few times and liked it, but my go-to revolvers are my S&W K-frames. So, it sat for a couple of years on the safe-queen throne.

Then my wife started coming with me to the range. Her problem is that she has smallish hands and is double jointed to boot. As a result, the K-frames don't fit her well. I have a couple of J-frames, but they are snubbies and a bit snappy for a beginner even with light-loaded wad cutters. She was getting more and more frustrated when I remembered the Rhino sitting in the safe. So I brought it along the next time and... voila! It fit like custom made for her. She could fire it one-handed as well as two handed and was getting 3 out of 5 round consistently in the black at 10 yards (fixed distance at the range). Now it's hers, and she is getting consistently better. I may get a 4-inch .357 for myself.

Oh, for those who are inevitably going to ask why I didn't start her with a .22, I tried but she felt that she didn't want to start with a "girly gun." So yay for the Rhino. Since then she has gotten interested enough in shooting to also want (and get) a Model 317 in .22. She keeps doing better with that too - starting to get inside the 8 ring more and more with both.
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Old November 25, 2015, 08:41 AM   #21
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Movie credit

Oh yeah. You'll see Rhinos in Divergent and Insurgent.
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Old November 25, 2015, 08:47 AM   #22
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I bought a Rhino snubbie when they first came out for my collection. Unique. Never have fired it.

Last edited by peggysue; November 25, 2015 at 02:39 PM.
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Old November 25, 2015, 10:57 AM   #23
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I've never seen one for sale.

I've never seen one at the range.

I'll never see one in my house.

The best hope for this pistol is a Rhinoplasty
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Old November 25, 2015, 11:15 AM   #24
cslinger
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i have never fired one. I really dig the looks but only from a toy point of view so to speak. Its not something I would buy over say a GP100 or good Smith for any kind of real purpose but I have toyed with the idea of getting one for some time because I really love how retro-futuristic they look. Beautiful, hell no but they are very cool looking to me.

That being said the early ones had some issues and Chiappa isn't really known for their lightning fast service.

There was also a guy recently on the forums (either here or THR or both) who had a Rhino where the recoil shield broke or some such fairly catastrophic issue occurred. IIRC it was eventually fixed and it could have been a fluke as I haven't heard of lots and lots and lots of issues with these guns but there are not exactly lots and lots of them out their either.

So my take is if you want a cool gun for the sake of a cool gun and one that in 10 or 20 years will probably be fairly obscure and a great conversation piece, go for it. If you want a "weapon, gaming pistol, hunting pistol etc. etc." then I would probably look elsewhere.

My two cents.
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Old November 25, 2015, 01:16 PM   #25
Grant D
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For a 357 mag. I have Colts and S&W's from 2'' to 6" barrels.
I'm sorry but that Rhino is to butt ugly for me to spend money on when I already have quality 357's

But I do have two NAA Mini revolvers, one in 22 mag, and the other has 22lr and 22 mag cylinders.

Last edited by Grant D; November 27, 2015 at 10:37 AM.
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