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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi all, I've almost always bought Colts, never S&W. But the Mod 34-1 "Kit Gun" has always intrigued me, so I have one coming to me. I'm guessing the "small J frame" is about the same size as the Police Positive frame? I'm also thinking the adjustable sights will be better than the micro bead on a lot of Police Positive Targets. Otherwise, what do you think is different, or what do you like about a Kit gun, if you have one? Thanks!
 

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Just opinion from owning a number of 22 revolvers but I believe the Colt Diamondback 22 is the best ever made in double action. I owned a couple of 34s over the years and they just didn't ring my bell like a DB does. However for the price a 34 is affordable and will fit that notch of a good trail gun.
 

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One of the down sides to the Police Positive Targets is they were only made in 6" barrels. The S & W model 34 was available in 4" and 2" barrel lengths. Because of the shorter barrel lengths the Smith wins out for portability.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Good point, I do sometimes feel the pencil barrel on my two PPs in .22 is a tad long. Looking forward to seeing what the Mod. 34 is all about.

I've never considered a Diamondback. I like pre-war styling, and don't care for ventilated ribs and bling on basically a Police Positive action. I wouldn't pay the extra $600 or so for the polish and rib, over a classic $400 Police Positive or Smith Kit Gun. The best .22 DA Colt made was the Officers Model, in my opinion. But that's not a small frame, it's a mid frame.
 

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I own several of the S&W J-frame 22's with 2", 4" and 6" barrels. My favorite is the stainless M63's with the 2" round butt frame. They are way more durable than a fragile DB when you carry one camping or when in a rainy/wet environment. Of course, since not many of the M63's were not made with the 2" barrel, they can be quite expensive, but I suspect still less expensive than a 2-1/2" barrel DB.
 

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Those Smiths are great revolvers. I have the 2" M34, 3.5" in the M43 and M51, and the 6" M35. All nice guns. I had a 6"Police Positive Target and never got used to it, I just had the barrel cut to 3" and it's perfect.
 

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A "kit gun" is generally considered a small-frame revolver, usually in .22 LR, that is lightweight and can be tossed into a fishing or camping kit.
 

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I own two - a 4" and a 2" - both made in the early 1950's and both boxed.

Put a small grip adapter on them, and they're perfect trail guns - light (but heavy enough) compact and accurate as hell.

Incidentally, the .22 Diamondback was built to compete with the S&W K-22 - both are larger than the Kit Gun and have their own place - and the Diamondback can't hold a candle to the K-22 for smoothness, accuracy and durability.
 

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Colt did kinda give a nod to the "Kit Gun" concept with the Bankers Special in .22, the Courier in .22, and the Cobra with 3" barrel in .22. However, none of the aforementioned have adjustable sights. Perhaps Colt felt that this market was being adequately served with the Woodsman Sport model. I would also note that a short barreled Colt New Frontier .22 make a great little handgun to accompany one in the field. When all is said and done, when I hear the words Kit Gun I think Smith & Wesson.
 

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I don't get the point of adjustable sights on what's supposed to be a "kit gun" if actually used as such. The rear sight could easily be damaged if used that way. Maybe it was expected that someone would carefully protect the piece if used in a fishing or camping kit, but I don't know if such a disclaimer was included in any ads. Personally, I think the Cobra 3" .22 is about as perfect a kit gun as there could be...at least prior to the introduction of stainless steel in handguns.
 
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Colt did kinda give a nod to the "Kit Gun" concept with the Bankers Special in .22, the Courier in .22, and the Cobra with 3" barrel in .22. However, none of the aforementioned have adjustable sights. Perhaps Colt felt that this market was being adequately served with the Woodsman Sport model. I would also note that a short barreled Colt New Frontier .22 make a great little handgun to accompany one in the field. When all is said and done, when I hear the words Kit Gun I think Smith & Wesson.
Don't disregard the Ruger Bearcat, a neat little SA 22.....
 

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I own a S&W model 34 2". Have owned the model 35, a 6" J frame, and owned a model 51 3 1/2" also a J frame. The model 51 was/is a .22 WMRF. I bought it about 1971. I reasoned Ruger made the convertible single six which was my first good revolver back about 1961, why doesn't Smith do the same? I bought a new model 51 and then ordered a model 34 or 35 .22lr cylinder for it. Also ordered a wide J frame target trigger and hammer. It worked well. I would like to fantasize that I gave the company the idea for it as not long after I ordered the parts they made it a option for awhile in their next catalog. I also got a beautiful set of aged stag grips for it. I made a BIG mistake later trading it off. I have found the J frame smiths I owned to be sticky with tight chambers but have heard some people ream them out slightly to fix the problem. I never did, I just lived with it and keep the chambers clean. I never had that problem with other rugers and colts I own or have owned. I dont have a picture of the model 51 I had except on Photobucket and we know that story. I have had many guns pass through my hands but that one is one of my biggest regrets selling. I also own a model 53 22 jet with .22 lr inserts but they are a pain to load and unload so it`s more of a safe queen. I also own a nice nickle scout, a almost new/old single six and a old colt trooper 4" in .22 LR. The Trooper is a LOT heavier than a .22 needs to be. The scout with the bright nickle sights are hard to pick up in bright sunlight. The old single sixs are great.
 

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I have & have owned a variety of .22 pistols & DIY conversons from repro '51 Colt Navy & Rem Navy, a Colt .41 SAA to .22, an Ace plus two other 1911 variants, S&Ws from #1s, Kit gun, K-22 & Colts PPT & OMT, all plus a collection of 20 IJ & H&Rs. My favorite of all is my S&W Kit Gun with the square butt, I gave to my Daughter ----->
 
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