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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It has been said to me that older revolvers (pre1980s) aren't as accurate and don't have quite as good velocity than modern revolvers (post 1990s)

It was even said to me today when I told a dealer and former LEO that I my goal at the range was to be able to shoot the bullseye with one hand, at 50 yards with my Colt Official Police.
He frowned and said "that gun won't be able to do it" (at least not consistantly)"it's a four inch barrel and is too short for 50 yards. Such guns are only accurate for up to 15 yards especially with a gun that of that age."

Well, thinking about that, I considered further, "wait a minute, we are talking about a colt." Their barrels were superior when they were built 50 years ago and just as good when they were built into classics like the Python. Such guns are notoriously accurate especially with their "bank vault" lock of the cylinder.

But, what do you Colt experts out there think of that. Could the Offical Police or the Python meet my goal of 50 yards with one hand if I practiced enough?

Didn't police used to have to qualify at 50 yards with one hand and even have competition shootings (pre-shyster attorney days)?
 

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Sounds like the "experts" are wrong again to me. I've read Ed McGivern's book "Fast and Fancy Revolver Shooting" In case you don't know who he was. Ed was and is still considered to be one the best DA revolver exhibition shooters of all time. He talks about how all the experts told him that the various tricks he wanted to perform were immpossible. The revolver wasn't accurate enough etc. He proved them wrong. This sounds similar to me. Are the Colt or S&W revolvers capable of performing to this level of accuracy. Yes with the right load and more importantly the right shooter I believe that they are. Colt barrels have been know for generations to be some of the most accurate production barrels made. So much so that people used to have Colt's barrels placed on other makes of guns. i.e. The Cougar which had a ruger action with a Colt barrel for example.

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Isn't McGivern the one who demonstrated in 1935 that a revolver can actually fire at a faster rate than a semi auto?
 

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[ QUOTE ]
Isn't McGivern the one who demonstrated in 1935 that a revolver can actually fire at a faster rate than a semi auto?

[/ QUOTE ]

McGivern did lots of stuff that astound me. You should read his book sometime to be dumbfounded by his exploits.

As for Colt vs. S&W: I wish I could buy Colt revolvers at S&W prices, if that tells you anything. In my opinion Colt's are superior and every bit as accurate (if not more so) as anything that has come out of Massachusetts. Nothing Smith has made compares to the Python. (IMHO)
 

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Both Colt and Smith and Wesson have their fine points, but it's hard not to notice that the early double action speed and accuracy shooting by Ed Mcgivern, and later by fellows like Bill Jordan, was all done with S&W revolvers and that trend continues today with all the records being set by Jerry Miculek using S&W revolvers. I don't know of any world class exhibition shooters that used Colt double action revolvers.
 

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The main thing that barrel length affects(in a quality) revolver is velocity. Even then for the most part the difference between a 2in. bbl and a 6in. won't be that great. Yes, there will be a difference but nothing huge.
Four of the most accurate revolvers I've ever owned happen to be a 2" Cobra, a 2" Agent in the Colt department. In that "other brand" /forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif a 2" model 10 and a 2" model 640 (.38spcl.). All very accurate handguns and most definitely beyond 15 yards. Just as accurate as their longer bbl'd counterparts in my experience.
 

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Ohiobuckeye,

Mr. McGivern in a part of his book talks about the revolvers he used. Now I don't have the book in front of me but there were numerous brands involved not just S&W. He also did use Colt. He also discussed in some length that you could do what he did with any quality revolver which did mention both S&W and Colt along with others. He seemed to be disinclined to talk bad about any particular brand of revolver.

As to Jerry Miculek using S&W's, well what the heck do you expect him to use while he's being paid by S&W? S&W still has a professional shooting team. Colt doesn't. I think that Jerry or Bill Jordan are(were) great shooters who could repeat their performance with many different brands of DA revolvers.

Dave
 

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In any case, you can bet these guys are using very particular pistols. What I mean is they're probably not straight off the shelf standard production models. Even if they are, you can bet they are that one "cherry" pistol that was hand picked over many.

I have to quote "Dr. D" in that it doesn't matter what year a pistol was manufactured. There's good ones and then there's sometimes "not so good" ones, of the exact same models.
 

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Must remember these guys are the "exceptions", not the norm or the average shooters.
From what I was told, they used the S&W more, because of the shorter "lock time"?? More needed to be done to 'modify' the Colt and make it consistant, not misfire, but in the hands of one of these guys , again, they could work "magic". Must see it done in 'slow motion AND the targets being hit at the same time, awesome..............
 

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No blasphemy intended because I dearly love every Colt I own and regret every one I’ve sold.

But as a guy who regularly shoots revolvers in competition (IDPA, ICORE and bullseye) I have to say that like everyone else I shoot with, S&W’s are THE choice for modern revolver competition.

I’m sure that as dwr461says this is in part because S&W supports revolver sports and has a team. In addition, is the fact that they 1) still produce revolvers and 2) produce some specialized “Custom Shop” revolvers like the 8 shot 627’s and the 7 shot 520/620’s.

The “other” reasons for S&W’s domination of the action type shooting games are, 1) the cylinder release (for most people pushing is faster than pulling -- this is the same reason I have NEVER seen a left handed shooter shoot a Colt in these competitions) and 2) the trigger (Colt’s lock-up is spectacular for single action but stacks more then the S&W’s when shot double action although there are a very few revolver smiths around who can tune Colt’s to eliminate this).

As for the amount of custom work on guns shot by the leading revolver shooters, unlike auto’s, revolvers from either Smith or Colt require no accuracy work. Mostly they get a trigger job. This is accomplished mostly by polishing the lock work and replacing the springs. Most of this can be done on the kitchen table although the big guys go farther and will be shooting double actions that weigh in at as little as 3 pounds.

As for me, in IDPA I shoot a .40 cal 626. In ICORE a 7 shot .357 520 and in bullseye either a 8 3/8” Model 14 or a 6” Model 27. I did know one guy that shot a Python in ICORE occasionally but his “serious” revolver was an 8 shot 627. In bullseye you will see quite a few 6” Pythons since it’s mostly shot single action so the double action trigger is irrelevant and the Python twist rate is said to be better at 50 yards.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
Ohiobuckeye,
As to Jerry Miculek using S&W's, well what the heck do you expect him to use while he's being paid by S&W? S&W still has a professional shooting team. Colt doesn't. I think that Jerry or Bill Jordan are(were) great shooters who could repeat their performance with many different brands of DA revolvers.

Dave

[/ QUOTE ]

Good points. I would add that Colt no longer even makes a double action revolver, and I think you'll find Miculek was well on his way as a world class shooter of S&W revolvers long before S&W became his sponsor. Like many of us, these men owned and shot fine guns from other makers and had different guns for different tasks. My comments were based on my own observations of well documented facts and are not intended as endorsement, or condemnation, of either Colt or S&W revolvers. I dearly love them both and own nearly equal numbers of both Colt and S&W revolvers. Only financial limitations(and a high maintenance wife... /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gifkeep me from owning at least one of everything both companies ever produced.
As much as we might like to have seen all the great shooters blazing away with a Colt in each hand, the fact remains that the great exhibition revolver shooters from the double action revolver era of the last century used S&W revolvers to accomplish their awesome feats, and Miculek continues the trend into this century. I have my doubts, but perhaps they could have done all those things with Colt revolvers but we have little choice but to accept that they chose the best revolver of the times to match their needs and abilities. Dant and acrobat have named some of the reasons that probably affected their choice, and obviously, they thought S&W gave them the edge they needed.
 

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Re: How do old colt revolvers compare to modern S&

I yield to Acrobat's greater experience in this field. I also agree that Colt was not the weapon of choice for rapid fire revolver work. I apoligize for being arguementative.

But getting back to the original post, I think that any of the aforementioned revolvers with the right shooter and load would be capable of the bullseye at 50 yards. Can we agree on that point?

Dave
 

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Re: How do old colt revolvers compare to modern S&

wellcrobat no blasphemy here either but as stated before,i have a detective special i can hit pepsi cans at 50 yards all day long ,yes its a 2 inch barrel,ican hit 6 inch clay targets at 100 yards and evn at150 with my colt target ,not repeatedly at 100 and 150 though ,and yes i have shot for years,i havent heard of anyone with a smith doing this,not saying it cant be done though,around here when you trade a smith for a colt you have to pay the difference.also where do i go to find out aboutidpa bullseye.
 

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Ed McGivern's feats of expert shooting included 5 rounds in 2/5 of a second...Grouping in the size of a playing card.
S&W pretty much 'owned' revolver bullseye shooting until after WW II, when large numbers of Colts took over.
I recall the 'Smython', a .38 spl. S&W with a Python barrel.
There used to be LOTS of 'em out there.
I tend to agree with the statement that most of ANY competitive shooting depends on the shooter.
Don
 

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Doug,

You're a newbie and you already know more than the guy you were talking to. Glad you came over here to talk to folks who know a little more than he did.

A 4" barrel is a disadvantage at 50 yards because of sight radius. 6" is better, and even longer is better for some folks if the gun holds well in their hands. I happen to own both a 4" OP and a 6" OP, and I seem to recall that they are both capable of 10-ring accuracy with some factory ammo. Not sure about X-ring, and I haven't fired them at fifty yards. At my age and eyesight, it is possible that I am a much greater limitation than the gun or the ammo.

I'm not sure, but I believe that the best Colts tend to be a little more accurate than the best S&W's, and the S&W's have what most consider a MUCH better DA pull than the Colts. They also often have a much better out-of-the-box SA pull, but I believe that both can easily be taken to rule-book limits.

Neither gun ages noticeably, at least not on the shelf. They can rust, but they will seldom actually rot. In addition, most of the older Colts and S&W's both were better fitted fifty to eighty years ago, although S&W has instituted some production changes that should (but don't) result in better revolvers. At least that's what it looks like to me. On the other hand, I haven't bought a lot of new revolvers, so I'm not the best source of info on them.

I'm sure that a 6" Python would do just fine at 50yd, but NOBODY (as far as I know) uses a revolver in CF competition these days - the time advantage of the autoloader (as long as you allow alibis for when they don't work) is just too great. I would be leery of a 4" gun for 50yd, but you might find that you can do fine with it. Most folks' experience runs against that.
 

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Re: How do old colt revolvers compare to modern S&

Hey guys,

I am Colt to the core, and when shooting in a match like PPC, or something where I have a known amount of time to shoot, I much prefer the "stacking" of my Colts to a Smith. I find that I am capable of getting into a rythmn, and can shoot the double just about as well as the single.

However, in IDPA, or something where I am just trying to shoot as fast as possible, I think the Smith does it much better. The action is better suited (my opinion only) to that type of really fast DA.

I have to do my own action work on my Colts, and will not subject them to that type of pounding.

George
 

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Re: How do old colt revolvers compare to modern S&

[ QUOTE ]
S&W pretty much 'owned' revolver bullseye shooting until after WW II, when large numbers of Colts took over.

[/ QUOTE ]
You have that a little backwards don't you?
 

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Re: How do old colt revolvers compare to modern S&

i think ppc and IDPA are not for me ,the way i see it they aint even close to being in my leage,to each his own.
 
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