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Old 10-26-2012, 08:41   #26
lawman800
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cowboywannabe View Post
unless you have ankle/leg problems id recommend an all steel snubby.

i used to carry a 640-1 loaded with real magnums, just as easy as a "baby" glock but actually concealed better on the ankle.
I thought that was the way to go until I tried an airweight, huge difference, especially after a long day.
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Old 10-26-2012, 09:53   #27
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Originally Posted by m2hmghb View Post
I don't know if they still make them but they used to make a bolt on shroud for the hammer. If hammerless is needed then a 442 or 642. I would NOT reccomend the superlight magnums that are out there, with magnum rounds some have been known to have the bullet jump crimp and lock up the revolver. In addition the recoil is a lot heavier which sucks for range time and qualification time.
For range time/qual time I shoot .38 out of mine. When at work its loaded with .357


Sent from my iPhone... which probably auto-corrected something wrong
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Old 10-26-2012, 14:40   #28
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The 442/642 gets my vote, as well. I've carried one as a backup for several years. Currently it rides in my left front pants pocket in a Nemesis holster. I've also carried it on my ankle (at that time I was carrying a Glock 27 in the left pocket...current department only allows one backup).

The 340PD and M&P340 are nice enough guns, and the weight difference is nothing to scoff at, but they're over twice the price of a $350-$400 -42 and are even less pleasant to shoot.
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Old 10-26-2012, 15:03   #29
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For a revolver, I'd go with a 642 in a pocket holster. Ideal location to me in the left side cargo pocket. I've been carrying a BUG there for many years with no issue. They are a lot easier to get to than vest, ankle, or front or hip pockets.
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Old 10-26-2012, 15:36   #30
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Thanks for all of the info.

I located a 442 in stock with no internal lock for $419.00 (total $449.48 with tax) officer price. Does this seem on par with the rest of you?
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Old 10-26-2012, 16:30   #31
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If you are set on a five shot revolver, I saw get a .357. There are a couple reasons, and none of them are so you can torture yourself. Most 38 special, and 357 magnum loads were designed with 4" barrels in mind. There are some exceptions, but IMHO, only hits count, and pounding recoil and muzzle flash is not conducive to accuracy.

1.The .357 snubbies have a slightly longer barrel, which gives a better sight radius.

2.They have a longer ejector rod... lets you clear empty (38 special) cases easier. I used to have to shoot a 60 round course of fire with mine.

3. There's flexibility to shoot two different calibers.

4. I carry a S&W model 38 for my BUG. I have carried Colt Detectives which I liked better. Currently, I think the Ruger LCR's are the way to go. They have a much better trigger out of the box. They seem to sell a lot of them, S&W came out with their own polymer frame version, so they must be doing something right. I have said it many times when this topic comes up, that if they made a 6-shot version, I would buy it tomorrow.
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Old 10-26-2012, 18:35   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPaladin View Post
Thanks for all of the info.

I located a 442 in stock with no internal lock for $419.00 (total $449.48 with tax) officer price. Does this seem on par with the rest of you?
That's too high for officer pricing.

http://www.budspolicesupply.com/cata....php/cPath/4_9

No 442/642's in stock though, but it gets updated often.
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Old 10-26-2012, 19:22   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by razdog76 View Post
If you are set on a five shot revolver, I saw get a .357. There are a couple reasons, and none of them are so you can torture yourself. Most 38 special, and 357 magnum loads were designed with 4" barrels in mind. There are some exceptions, but IMHO, only hits count, and pounding recoil and muzzle flash is not conducive to accuracy.

1.The .357 snubbies have a slightly longer barrel, which gives a better sight radius.

ACCORDING TO SMITH & WESSON, THE 640-1 HAS A 2-1/8" BARREL WHILE THE AIRWEIGHT 642/442 HAS A 1-7/8" BARREL, FOR A GRAND DIFFERENCE OF 1/4" OF BARREL.

2.They have a longer ejector rod... lets you clear empty (38 special) cases easier. I used to have to shoot a 60 round course of fire with mine.

I'LL MEASURE BOTH OF MINE, I GOT BOTH J FRAMES, TO SEE HOW LONG OF A DIFFERENCE IS THERE IN THE EJECTOR RODS, BUT IF YOU USE THE RIGHT TECHNIQUE OF SWITCHING HANDS, TILTING THE BARREL UPWARD, AND USING YOUR HAND TO FULLY AND FORCEFULLY PLUNGE THE EJECTOR, YOU SHOULD CLEAR ALMOST EVERYTHING, EXCEPT FOR THE BULGED CASES WHICH WOULDN'T BUDGE WHETHER YOU HAVE A LONG OR SHORT EJECTOR ROD.

3. There's flexibility to shoot two different calibers.

DEPENDS ON IF YOU ARE INTENT ON ACTUALLY USING ANY MAGNUM ROUNDS. OUR DUTY AUTHORIZED MAGNUM ROUND IS WAY TOO HARSH IN THE J FRAMES SO THE FLEXIBILITY MAKES NO DIFFERENCE FOR WORK.
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Originally Posted by BlackPaladin View Post
Thanks for all of the info.

I located a 442 in stock with no internal lock for $419.00 (total $449.48 with tax) officer price. Does this seem on par with the rest of you?
Sometimes you find the 442 under $400 but with our taxes and fees, it's all the same or within a small amount that it's not worth the hunt nor the drive. Also, the FFL's here that do out of state transfers charge a lot of money for accepting the transfer, which can be $50 to $100 per gun and most of them lean toward the high end so any savings buying online is negated by the transfer fees... unless you are buying a M1A worth about 2G's.
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Last edited by lawman800; 10-26-2012 at 19:23..
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Old 10-26-2012, 19:37   #34
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Originally Posted by BlackPaladin View Post
Thanks for all of the info.

I located a 442 in stock with no internal lock for $419.00 (total $449.48 with tax) officer price. Does this seem on par with the rest of you?

I have bought several times from these folks and never had a problem or issue. They have them for $399.95 in stock.

http://www.topgunsupply.com/smith-we...rnal-lock.html
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Old 10-27-2012, 15:03   #35
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Lawman800, I know they sound like semantical differences, but I think they give a slight edge.

I do reloads the proper way and have had cases get hung up always towards the frame. When this happens, it always seems as though a longer ejector would ensure the case clears the charging hole.
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Old 10-27-2012, 18:26   #36
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Originally Posted by razdog76 View Post
Lawman800, I know they sound like semantical differences, but I think they give a slight edge.

I do reloads the proper way and have had cases get hung up always towards the frame. When this happens, it always seems as though a longer ejector would ensure the case clears the charging hole.
I don't doubt your experiences, but at the range, using factory Winchester ammo for the last ten years, I never had a problem ejecting cases out of either J frame.
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Old 10-27-2012, 19:08   #37
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A three inch J frame [to ensure full ejector rod stroke] kind of defeats the purpose of a J frame.
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Old 10-27-2012, 20:28   #38
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Originally Posted by blueiron View Post
A three inch J frame [to ensure full ejector rod stroke] kind of defeats the purpose of a J frame.
Huh?

Ejector rod would be the same (depending on caliber) regardless of barrel length. On the .357 models, it is just a little longer to allow the longer .357 cases to clear.
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Old 10-27-2012, 20:32   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by razdog76 View Post
Huh?

Ejector rod would be the same (depending on caliber) regardless of barrel length. On the .357 models, it is just a little longer to allow the longer .357 cases to clear.
Actually, from looking at the various j-frames on S&W's site, it looks like the longer barrels do in fact have longer ejector rods (no j-frames have ejector rods long enough to fully eject .38 or .357 cases like a K- or L-frame does).
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Old 10-27-2012, 20:36   #40
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I used to carry an older stainless 649 Bodyguard at work as a secondary weapon (older .38 version).

After I bought my first 642-1 I decided the little Centennial Airweight was the better way to go. Of course, I'm a long time revolver shooter (who likes Magnum revolvers), so the lightweight DAO snub was a handy gun for me.

The 442 is nice for having a dark, non-reflective finish, if that interests you, but the carbon steel barrel, cylinder & yoke aren't going to resist oxidation like the stainless steel used in the 642. Your choice. How much daily care & attention are you willing to invest?

I find the Airlite snubs (Scandium frames & titanium cylinders) to be really light to carry, but harder recoiling.

My favorite of them all is the M&P 340 Centennial. It's chambered in Magnum, but I mostly use & carry +P. (They make a version only chambered in .38 +P, originally produced for LAPD use.) It falls between the Airlites & Airweights in weight.

The thing I like best about the M&P 340 is the XS front night sight. Fast & easy to pick up for aimed fire. The Scandium frame makes it expensive, though.

All things considered, the 642 is probably the best deal going, as S&W offers them for great prices through their LE distributors (and some S&W dealers seem willing to offer them for decent prices). The 642 is still their best selling revolver, last I heard. The 442 is a close second.

Where & how to carry it? Depends on your needs. Talk to your firearms training unit or instructor about some methods. Almost all methods have their proponents and detractors, with advantages & disadvantages to carefully consider.

I've been attending some updated training this year. The effective & successful use of the little 5-shot snubs have continued to grow. In one class I attended, the instructor (retired LASD) was able to relate a number of instances where cops were able to fall back on their 5-shot backup snubs to successfully deal with 1, 2 & even 3 attackers.

Nothing "wrong" with some of the better .380's, either.
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Old 10-27-2012, 20:45   #41
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Actually, from looking at the various j-frames on S&W's site, it looks like the longer barrels do in fact have longer ejector rods (no j-frames have ejector rods long enough to fully eject .38 or .357 cases like a K- or L-frame does).
I stand corrected, had to go look at mine... My M38 Bodyguard (made in 1973), Looks like there is at least 1/4" maybe 3/8" of case left in the cylinder when the ejector is fully depressed.

So it does allow for a longer, perhaps 1/8" more ejector which IMHO was a distinct benefit.
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Old 10-28-2012, 00:40   #42
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I will add to the chorus recommeding a 642. Mine is actually an M460, which was a 642 given a certain package of work by the Performance Center back when every little variant seemed to get its own model designation. (That was not a typo! Yes, today's 460 is a monster X-frame. S&W sometimes does re-use model numbers.)

I do NOT think the Air-lites, with titanium cylinders, are a good idea, at least for my hands. Airweight is light enough for me. I sold my AirLight Model 342, as it was past the point of diminishing returns.

My actual present secondary/tertiary gun, for concealment when in uniform, is a Ruger SP101 in a Kramer horsehide/kydex pocket holster, in a cargo pocket. (VertX pants) This may change, as we are switching uniform cargo pants, and it takes a seriously sturdy and large pocket to accomodate such a large and heavy snubby. I may have to revert to ankle carry if I want to keep toting the SP101, or may go back to using the J-frame.
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Old 10-28-2012, 11:35   #43
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Get a 442 or 642 pro. The pro models are cut for moonclips, which makes for super easy extraction, even with the short rod. Plus you can always shoot w/o the moonclips.
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Old 10-28-2012, 12:12   #44
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Huh?

Ejector rod would be the same (depending on caliber) regardless of barrel length. On the .357 models, it is just a little longer to allow the longer .357 cases to clear.
The ejector rod on a 2 inch J frame does not allow for full stroke ejection, nor does a 2.5 inch K frame [in .38 Special or .357 Magnum].

Only barrels of 3 inches or longer have full length ejector rods. My 640 [2 inch barrel] has a cylinder face to end length of 1.25 inches and my 66 [4 inch barrel] has a cylinder face to end length of 2.25 inches [both include the yoke].

The effective stroke length is longer on full sized revolvers versus short barreled revolvers.
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Old 10-28-2012, 12:13   #45
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Not a cop, but I carry a 442 8n the weakside pocket. If I don't need it, a brother might.
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Old 10-28-2012, 15:20   #46
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The ejector rod on a 2 inch J frame does not allow for full stroke ejection, nor does a 2.5 inch K frame [in .38 Special or .357 Magnum].

Only barrels of 3 inches or longer have full length ejector rods. My 640 [2 inch barrel] has a cylinder face to end length of 1.25 inches and my 66 [4 inch barrel] has a cylinder face to end length of 2.25 inches [both include the yoke].

The effective stroke length is longer on full sized revolvers versus short barreled revolvers.
I acknowledged my error a few posts, but the ejector will still be longer on the magnum because the barrel is longer, and the cylinder is longer, and thus will still be IMHO easier and more reliable to eject empties.
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Old 10-28-2012, 17:08   #47
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I acknowledged my error a few posts, but the ejector will still be longer on the magnum because the barrel is longer, and the cylinder is longer, and thus will still be IMHO easier and more reliable to eject empties.
Okay, to put this to an end... I took out both my M640-1 and my M642-5 or whatever it is... and measured the ejectors with my unscientific measuring tape.

The visible portion of the magnum ejector measure 24mm and th+e non-magnum measures 16mm, for a difference of 50% or 8mm... which roughly translates to about less than 1/3" which sort of correlates to the barrel length difference of 1/4" due to the longer cut out of the full underlug barrel.

Then there is the difference in length of the cylinder to accommodate the magnum cartridges, which in itself would necessitate a longer ejector to clear the cases out.

When engaged, the magnum pushes the cases out 25mm past the end of the cylinder while the non magnum pushes the cases out 17mm beyond the cylinder, according to my non-scientific measuring tape.

So now the question is when cases bulge, would that extra 8mm make any difference in clearing the malfunction?

In my years of shooting all my J-frames, I have never experienced any malfunctions and my cases have all ejected just fine when I plunge the ejector with my left or right hand.
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Old 10-28-2012, 18:30   #48
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Okay, to put this to an end... I took out both my M640-1 and my M642-5 or whatever it is... and measured the ejectors with my unscientific measuring tape.

The visible portion of the magnum ejector measure 24mm and th+e non-magnum measures 16mm, for a difference of 50% or 8mm... which roughly translates to about less than 1/3" which sort of correlates to the barrel length difference of 1/4" due to the longer cut out of the full underlug barrel.

Then there is the difference in length of the cylinder to accommodate the magnum cartridges, which in itself would necessitate a longer ejector to clear the cases out.

When engaged, the magnum pushes the cases out 25mm past the end of the cylinder while the non magnum pushes the cases out 17mm beyond the cylinder, according to my non-scientific measuring tape.

So now the question is when cases bulge, would that extra 8mm make any difference in clearing the malfunction?

In my years of shooting all my J-frames, I have never experienced any malfunctions and my cases have all ejected just fine when I plunge the ejector with my left or right hand.
Sure, so in a roundabout way you confirmed that the sight radius is .25" longer plus the length of the slightly longer frame (to house the longer cylinder), and the ejector rod is indeed longer allowing the 38 special case to be pushed farther out of the cylinder.

Besides, I don't think you will ever have a revolver case bulge without having had a KB, maybe sticky extraction, but still the longer ejector rod would be of benefit if there was sticky extraction.

The OP asked for opinions, and I provided mine which were on par with yours aside from going with a .357 for the reasons you confirmed.
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Old 10-28-2012, 23:05   #49
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I've known the magnum had a 1/4" longer barrel from day one because I did a lot of research on the J-frames before I bought mine. After a few years, I decided I didn't need the magnum capability and the extra weight... the Airweight does what I need and is so much easier in the pocket that I don't think I will ever go back to the full stainless.
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Old 11-01-2012, 02:17   #50
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Update:

I ordered a 442 from Buds Police Supply per CT suggestion (thanks!) for $338 shipped.

Will post pics when I can figure out the best way to carry this as a backup. I can't pocket carry it because my pockets are mostly blocked by duty belt equipment. I have BDU pants with lower leg pockets, not sure if I can use these for carry. I figure my only other two options are ankle or vest and I am leaning more towards ankle of those two.
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