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686 rt

While we were only able to put seven rounds through it today – and they were .38s at that – Smith’s skilled custom smithies have turned out one seksi shootin’ iron. In their original press release, Smith referred to their Performance Center-made beauty as “a high-end personal protection revolver.” That’s kinda like saying a Bugati Veyron is a nice way to bop on down to the market for a gallon of milk. If there’s a more elegant way to tote seven rounds of .357 wheel gun-delivered dissuasion with a slicker-than-snake-snot action, we can’t think of it. And all for a comparatively reasonable MSRP of $1089. Yes, please.

686 L

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  1. I know this makes me a heathen to some, but the snub-nose look does nothing for me. 5″ minimum for me. Preferably 6″ or 8. Just looks wrong being so short.

    … That may be what she (or he) said, but I’m just going to leave it like that for the lulz.

    • Aside from the looks (actually pretty sexy to me), would you get full effect from a .357 in a snubbie? Seems like you would just get huge fireballs with a marginal increase over a .38. Not that I have anything against huge fireballs.

      • Looks like it’s probably a 2.5 or 2.75 inch barrel. I prefer a 3″ minimum on a .357 because it gives just a wee little more ejector rod to kick the empties clear free.

        A 3″ .357 is loud and does have a fireball, it’s still a .357. Add some good grips and it’s entirely controllable, even with 180 grain hard cast Buffalo Bore loads. And it’s downright tame with your average .38 Special loads.

  2. $1000 bucks for a revolver? Ugh. $1k for a carry gun? Just no. And I hate the “Performance Center” billboard taking up the entire barrel. It just looks like it’s begging for attention.

    3/10 would not operate with

  3. Not to go all off-topic, but I kinda like all the metaphors, similes, analogs and whatever enlightening literary tools you can come up with. For example, I had no idea that snakes produce mucus, let alone with a low coefficient of friction.

  4. If my carry pistol was that expensive I wouldn’t want to use it for defense for fear of it getting seized by police and never returned…

  5. Hopefully, anyone buying one won’t have trouble with 158 grain, or larger, ammunition. I’d recommend they test fire seven rounds. It’ll probably the last time you’ll ever want to use the 158 grain, given the short barrel.

    I have a 4″ 686-6 I bought last October. .38 caliber and 125 grain bullets fire perfectly but Hornady Custom 158 grain actually JAMMED the gun!

    This video (if it displays correctly) kind of illustrates my problem…

  6. I would normally say something snarky, like “Why should it be only the guns from the Custom Shop that are slicker-than-snake-snot, when ALL S&W revolvers used to come from the factory properly fitted and tuned (the factory used to employ skilled old guys, somewhat like shoemaker’s elves but armed with files and stones, who fitted all of the little machined parts together, one gun at a time), but I’ll just point out that this gun needs to go back to the Shop to have the cylinder finished (they forgot the flutes) and have the barrel replaced (that’s where the cylinder flutes ended up, it seems).

    Nice grips, though.

  7. I just found one locally and bought it on the spot. Unfortunately, I just bought a Sig P226 and P229 last week so my wife is in for a surprise when she gets the charge card bill. Easier to ask for forgiveness and all that.


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