What I’m Carrying Now: A Smith & Wesson Revolver and a Speed Loader

What I'm Carrying Now revolvers

Courtesy SLD

[This post is part of our series, What I’m Carrying Now. If you’d like to submit a photo and description of the gun, holster and gear you’re carrying in the new world in which we live, send it to us at [email protected] with WICN in the subject field.]

SLD writes . . .

What WE are carrying during this forced downtime are two Smith & Wesson J-frames. My wife is a dedicated revolver shooter and has some bad arthritis in her right wrist. Luckily she is a lefty and shoots left handed but it makes it hard for her to use a flashlight with a handgun.

So I made up this Smith 627 with a Crimson Trace Lasergrip and a LaserMax trigger mounted flashlight. She carries it in her CCW purse when she ventures out for work, she is a nurse, with a spare reload of CCI Blazer 158 grain HP, the load which shoots best out of it.

For myself since I am no longer going to the city for work I have put away my pistols for the time being and started carrying my Mag-Na-Port Int. modified S&W Model 60 revolver. They did an action job, ported it and put new high visibility C-More sights on it for my aging eyes.

I am carrying it in a Foxx Holsters Little Foxx loaded with Freedom Munitions .357 125 grain XTP and I carry two reloads of Freedom Munitions 125 grain .38 specials, for compatibility with my wife’s revolver also.

We live in a fairly rural area with a relatively low crime rate, and so far there is a not a real sense of danger or overt anxiety about supplies. Therefore we feel relatively comfortable carrying the smaller 5-shot Smiths. If things change drastically I can always pull out the higher capacity pistols.

 

comments

  1. avatar Geoff "Guns. LOTS of guns..." PR says:

    I suppose a “New York Reload” could be considered a type of ‘Speedload’… 😉

    1. avatar Sld says:

      If you read it, it says one is carried by myself one by my wife.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        Yes. Having some one you trust at your back is worth a New York reload and then some. Like I tell my wife. 4 eyes and 2 armed people are better than just one.

      2. avatar Geoff "Guns. LOTS of guns..." PR says:

        “If you read it, …”

        I did, and how does that change the fact that a ‘New York Reload’ can still be considered a type of speedload? It accomplishes the very same thing, putting the shooter back into the fight *fast*… 🙂

        1. avatar Sld says:

          I see, I apologize for correcting you. You are not incorrect as it turns out. Yesterday I went to go pickup my wife from work and I took her in. She is not allowed to carry at work so I put my taurus m380 for her to use in an emetgency in my left hip pocket because we were stopping at the Sam’s club.

  2. avatar MouseGun says:

    If I could hypothetically only have one gun, it would be the Model 60 3”.

  3. avatar EricB says:

    I carry a 60 almost everywhere. Replaced the humongous factory grip with an Altamont boot grip to keep the gun more concealable. It’s my favorite carry piece.

    1. avatar Rad Man says:

      I have the 2 1/8″ barrel but went with a full three finger Jim Badger laminate grip. My favorite handgun by far.

  4. avatar WI Patriot says:

    Can never go wrong with the tried and true wheelgun…

  5. avatar tdiinva says:

    There is a good video from the Fire Arms Guy today about a home invasion in a good neighborhood in Florida There is no safe haven, just lower risk. The bad guys lost.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      With respect to the scumbag home-invader, “He chose … poorly.”

      https://youtu.be/xCUwQIn3GrU

  6. avatar Specialist38 says:

    I sure like that light. Wish they made one for the LCR.

    The ones for J Frames wont fit my old models with shorter cylinder.

    Cool guns …. but that’s a big honkin grip on the 637.

    1. avatar No_Ones_Home says:

      I know that LaserMax makes a laser for the Ruger LCR. Never seen a mounted light for them. As thin as the frame is on a LCR, I would think that a light would be quite bulbus on it. But then again with LED technology these days, it’s probably quite possible to produce something small enough and functional for it.

      1. avatar Specialist38 says:

        The light for my 380 LCP is as thin as the LCP (0.8″ ?).

        They could do it if they wanted…..I’ve asked them nicely several times.

        Viridian too…..they hate me and all LCR owners.

    2. avatar Sld says:

      Specialist the light is what drove the choice of the 627 for her. We could only find it for a small group of revolvers, it won’t even fit all jframes, just the smaller ones.

      1. avatar Specialist38 says:

        And lasermax doesnt list the light on their site anymore. Too bad.

    3. avatar Sld says:

      Specialist the large grip on the 627 is actually a blessing for her. She has a bit of arthritis in the left hand also and the large grip distributes the recoil impulse better than the small boot grip

      1. avatar Specialist38 says:

        Understood. I have one such crimson trace grip on a 38 centennial for house use.

        Kinda large for pocket carry. But pretty useful for a grab gun.

  7. avatar strych9 says:

    Until I read the text the post piano playing scene from Tombstone was playing in my head.

    “That’s why I have two guns. One for each of ya.”

  8. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

    SLD, not a damn thing wrong with those revolvers. Or the reloads. Rubber grips are a little too grippy for me. I like smooth hardwood. Just me. Especially like the 3″. To Hell with those guys that think it’s all semi auto. They’ve probably never bumped into a bad guy in a doorway.

    1. avatar jwm says:

      Smooth hardwood is better looking. Unfortunately my hands get too sweaty for a good hold on them. Most wheel guns come with neoprene grips from the factory now. Back when they mostly had wood I switched them out with neoprene. Pachmayr got a lot of my business in the old days. Especially with magnums.

      The only exception was a Ruger super blackhawk .44 magnum. That plow handle shape allowed the gun to roll comfortably in my hand and make a second shot easier. The hammer was cocked before the barrel returned to level.

      1. avatar Gadsden Flag says:

        jwm, I feel you. I should qualify my remark. I like Spiegel Boot Grips on my J-frames. All my magnum revolvers have Pachmayer grips. The round butt 65s and the Mountain Gun have Pachmayer Professionals. Sorry for the confusion.

  9. avatar Chris T in KY says:

    This is timely. I’m looking into getting a .32 H&R revolver and or a .327 magnum revolver. Six and more rounders compared to a typical 5 round 38.

    1. avatar Hannibal says:

      Different strokes but the ammo selection for .357 wheelguns is a lot better… particularly when you take .38s into account.

    2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      Chris T in KY,

      With respect to revolvers my personal opinion is that .327 Federal Magnum is the ideal caliber for self-defense performance against human attackers.

      Why do I consider it ideal compared to .38 Special, .38 Special +P, .357 Magnum, .44 Special, and .44 Magnum? Quite simply, .327 Federal Magnum:
      1) provides adequate “stopping power”
      2) increases capacity versus the same size in other calibers
      3) enables faster and more accurate follow-up shots **

      (** .327 Federal Magnum enables faster and more accurate follow-up shots because it produces less recoil than other revolver platforms with loadings that have comparable “stopping power”.)

      The only down side to .327 Federal Magnum is local ammunition choice/availability as Hannibal stated. I imagine you would have to purchase just about all ammunition via mail-order. Other than that, it is my favorite wheel gun caliber.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        We’re not allowed to mail order in CA. And I’ve never seen a box of .327 on the shelves. I don’t even know anybody that has one. Next time I go to Utah I’ll try to remember to ask around. I’d like to try it once.

        1. avatar Chris T in KY says:

          The first time I’d heard of 327 Federal Magnum was when I saw a box on the Shelf at a sporting goods store In 2011. But sadly 2019 was the second time I saw it on gun store shelves. The Lucky Gunner website has a page about small caliber handgun block jell ballistic tests. And .327 is very impressive in their tests.

          I like the versatility of the 327. Because you can fire five different bullets sizes in the same gun. But ammunition capacity in today’s world I think it’s the most important. That’s why most everybody has switch to semi-auto guns.

          The USCCA is promoting a 7 shot 32 H&R mag revolver now. By Charter Arms. It might be a good compromise between ammo capacity, low recoil, and bullet caliber stopping ability.

          I know before the 1968 gun control Act was passed, 32 Caliber weapons were all over the United States. Very very popular.

          It was the preferred caliber of Charles Bronson and the first Death Wish film.

        2. avatar Joe-eyeball says:

          I’m on Ohio and I love my 327 fed mag lcrx as a BUG. The cool thing about Ammo shortages in my area is that both 32 H&R mag and 327 fed mag can be found at every gun store I frequent and over the last two weeks I’ve picked up over 200 rounds of hollow points in both calibers. Great gun is that LCR.

      2. avatar hawkeye says:

        Here’s another vote for the .327. I have a Ruger LCR in 9mm that is pretty sweet, but if I happen to stumble into an orphaned Roscoe in .327, I’ll just naturally have to take a second look.

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  11. avatar OldProf49 says:

    Two thumbs up! 👍👍 I’m glad someone cleared up the typo (627 vs 637). My favorite EDC is a 642 with skinny Altamont grips and a grip adaptor, but I’m experimenting with a LCR 38 and 357. I enjoy my compact 9’s but my first choice will always be a snub revolver.

    1. avatar Don Nelson says:

      I was trying to imagine an 8-shot steel N-Frame in an arthritic nurse’s carry bag. Then I saw “Airweight” and it made less sense. As corrected, the pair are totally suitable. Thanks for sharing.

    2. avatar RidgeRunner says:

      Great snub is my Ruger Alaskan in .44. Handy little tool for close quarters.

      1. avatar OldProf49 says:

        I applaud your generous definition of “little”! Does a S&W x-frame qualify as “medium”?

  12. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    SLD,

    Nice choice. Even though I carry a semi-auto handgun everyday, I love — LOVE — wheel guns. There is something about wheel guns where they have character and panache, versus semi-auto handguns, especially the all-black composite (plastic) varieties, that just seem absolutely soulless.

    Regarding your normal loading of .357 Magnum 125 grain hollowpoints, have you considered instead carrying .38 Special 158 grain semi-wadcutter hollowpoints? I imagine those would have similar (if not better) “stopping power” without as much blast or recoil (although I am not sure whether the heavier .38 Special 158 grain loads would produce less recoil than the lighter .357 Magnum 125 grain loads at significantly higher velocity).

    1. avatar jwm says:

      Its subjective. But to me at least the heaviest loads in .38 still seem to be milder than any of the magnum loads. Out of a j frame they both hurt. +P or magnum. But the +p hurts a little less. Move to a larger gun and there’s no contest. Magnum barks louder and harder.

      1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        jwm,

        Good to know. Thanks!

      2. avatar SteveO says:

        I like to use .38 Special 158gr. JHP loads in my S&W Air Lite .357 PD340. The plus P loads are unnecessary and only add more recoil. It’s a very light weight gun so recoil matters.

        My wife likes her Ruger LCP .380 and used it for her CCW Range Test. Originally she wanted an FN – Five-Seven but I talked her out of it. Too big for Concealed Carry and too expensive.

        1. avatar jwm says:

          Same as my airweight j frame. I just use standard pressure loads.

  13. avatar Ranger Rick says:

    I can understand the light but why the laser?

    1. avatar Sld says:

      Ranger, the handgun is also her best and gun and she quite frankly wanted them. We are getting older and she occasionally has a bit of problem seeing the front sight in low light, the laser gives her more confidence.

      1. avatar Sld says:

        Bed side table

    2. avatar RidgeRunner says:

      My wife has a Ruger LCR in .38 revolver and has an integrated Crimson Trace, she loves it and is dead-on.

  14. avatar enuf says:

    My only Smith & Wesson’s have been semi-auto pistols.

    My .38 snubby is a Charter Arms Off-Duty, from back before the Charter 2000 and CHARCO eras. These days I carry semi-auto pistols but when I carried the Off-Duty it was with a couple of the HKS type speedloaders.

    It all works with a bit of practice and I’m not against carrying the old snubby today. It’s just that I prefer my semi-autos..

  15. avatar Tec's Dad says:

    I learned to shoot using revolvers, in the academy that was the weapon, be it Colt, S&W or Dan Wesson…I used a S&W M13 4″ basically a beefed up M10HB in .357Mag. I have never felt under-gunned carrying a revolver. I own several modern semiautomatic pistols of various makes and models; I still like to carry a snubby when the conditions are right. I have carried a Ruger LCR in .38Spl., it is an awesome revolver and very easy to carry and shoot. I have carried my Taurus N327 in .327FedMag, I like it, it is a 6-shot but I need to do an action job on it. Recently, I purchased a Taurus M856, it is a small frame but with a 6-shot cylinder…I replaced the stock springs with a set from Galloway Precision, I de-burred the internals and it is a fantastic shooting snubby. It uses the same speed loader as a K-frame 6 shot…only thing I did not like was the grip shelf on the left side, it did not offer the best positioning using the speed loader so it was sanded off, now reloads are much easier.

  16. avatar Bemused Berserker says:

    My wife’ CCW almost to the Ť. Sans the light is about the only thing lacking. We did go for the Lyman Speedloaders over the H&K. Being machined aluminum, they’re easier to use. After putting the CT grips on, it was necessary to wiggle the loader to get it to fit, the Lyman corrected that issue. She’s carrying the Liberty Civil Defense 50gr HPs that are rated at 1500 fps (on my chrono,
    out of that <2" barrel, they clock a consistent 1375 fps). Recoil is more tolerable than the heavier, slower loads as she's RA issues too.

  17. avatar BradB says:

    My Dad was a revolver guy ’til the day he died. “You can’t trust ’em. They jam just when you need ’em.” was his attitude. In Korea he carried two H&R 922s in a double holster. In his 80s, the last time I took him to the range, he was shooting my 929 single handed, shaking like a leaf and still shooting in the 10 ring. I asked him how can you do that? “You can never hold steady. You have to time it when you’re crossing the target.” (I still can’t do that!)

    I was in my late 40s before I broke out of Dad’s mold and bought my first semi-auto. I wish he was still around, and fit and able, so I could take him to the range again.

    I give this post four thumbs up, two for Dad and two for me.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      BradB,

      “You can never hold steady. You have to time it when you’re crossing the target.”

      This is an absolute must when shooting archery. It is impossible for normal people to hold back 30 pounds of tension without shaking at least a tiny bit. I learned not to fight the shaking but to work with it. Rather than shaking randomly, kind of allow/direct your shaking to something like a figure-8 pattern, where the criss-cross of the “8” is at the center of your target. Then you simply time your release when your point-of-aim is at the middle of the “8” motion. And because it is a predictable pattern, you can easily predict when your point-of-aim will be at the center of the “8” and hence the center of your target.

      I firmly believe that I am a much better handgun shooter (and probably even rifle shooter) because of my archery practice.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        I have a 35 pound recurve and a 50 pound long bow. I pretty much agree with your assessment. I try to shoot instinctive. Focus on the target, not the arrow. Some days it works, some not. But I have gun either way. Never used a compound. I don’t know how hard they are to hold steady. But they have peep sights on some, so they must be easier to hold. Maybe.

        1. avatar jwm says:

          Fun either way. Not gun.

        2. avatar RidgeRunner says:

          Compound bow, Matthews Vertix in my case @ 60#, is as described, the peep moves around bit for me, and I time your release as best as you can when you’re on target, but it should “surprise” you when you touch off. Tends to work for me.

  18. avatar BusyBeef says:

    When I carry my revolvers I don’t bother carrying a reload. I just carry a second revolver.

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