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Which 44 Magnum to Buy?

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Which 44 Magnum to Buy?

Postby nelson@rainierconnect.com » Fri Sep 17, 2010 9:17 pm

Excuse me for asking a question that has been brought up before but I still need your help.

I'm looking to buy a new quality 44 Magnum. I am a novice when it comes to handguns. Quality is a must. Accuracy is important to me and also being able to quickly get back on target.

I am considering Ruger, S&W or DW. I don't want a barrel over 7.5 inches, 5" would be better. Also which trigger pull would be the smoothest DA or SA, or is this something a gunsmith needs to fix?

This will be my second and last handgun. The first I plan to buy is a H&K 45, LEM [DAO] variant 1, Tritium sights and Veridian C5L laser/light for home defense.

The 44 will be for carry in big black bear country. I've seen plenty when fishing and was never bothered but just in case...

I have read articles of having gunsmiths shortening barrels, changing sights, smoothing trigger pull, and porting?? the barrel to reduce recoil. However, I don't know if that is overkill.

In view of what I have said what is your suggestion?

Nelson USAF Retired

You Are Significant Because God Doesn't Make Mistakes or Junk
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Postby Will_Carry » Sat Sep 18, 2010 10:00 am

A Smith and Wesson model 29 with a 6.5 inch barrel. The "Dirty Harry" gun. If money was no object, I would have nothing else. It will cost you a grand new in the box.

If money was a concern I'd go with a Ruger Bisley Blachhawk. You will probably never need to shoot double action but the Super Redhawk will do that. Double action with a 44 magnum is less accurate and not that much faster than shooting single action. A 44 mag will also shoot 44 specials. Lower recoil. For target shooting or self defense. Dirty Harry did not shoot 44 magnum loads. He shot 44 special loads.

They make 44 magnums with ported barrels to reduce felt recoil. Taurus makes some 44 mags that are very popular with hunters. I personally would stay away from ported barrels. They can blow back hot gas and lead in your face. They do dampen the recoil and reduce muzzle flip. so my choice would be. in order of preferance

1) Smith and Wesson model 29

2) Smith and Wesson model 629 (A modernized 29 very nice)

3) Ruger Super Redhawk

4) Ruger BlackhawK

5) Taurus model 44 or 444. (A lot of people like'm just not me)
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Postby ulgydog56 » Sat Sep 18, 2010 4:10 pm

ditto on that,but porting sure is nice......
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Postby michae1 » Sat Sep 18, 2010 10:36 pm

I would recommed a ruger redhawk 44 mag., not only because I have one, but I have also fired the smith and wesson, for the money the ruger is a much better deal! The Performance and durrability is equal, and in my opinion the ruger is better looking.
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Postby drygulch » Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:44 am

My first & best choice would be the Ruger Alaskan 454 Casull/45 Colt. In the review, I posted a pic of mine. (#2 photo) - A great caliber for bear: 454 Casull. For shooting targets or for smaller game use the 45 Colt. The Alaskan will shoot both. With a 2 1/2" barrel, this is the most accurate handgun I've ever shot. It'll out shoot most 4, 6, 7+" barrels. It's unreal.

My second choice would be the Ruger Super Redhawk in 44 mag. I have a Ruger Blackhawk 50 yr anniversary 44 mag. (single action) The Super Redhawk is double action.
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Postby neverenough » Wed Sep 22, 2010 11:23 am

Hey nelson,.....Some good advise given here. My input and recommendation would be a Smith model 329PD. This choice is based upon your descriptive purpose of the handgun.

The fact that you have a concern over bear, indicates that you would be more comfortable in the back country having some adequet firepower....just in case. I feel the same.

Sounds as though you are fortunate to enjoy an absolutely beautiful part of the country ("rainierconnect...") and I say fish, camp and/or explore without worry!

Anyhow....the 329PD with a 4 inch barrel weighs @ 27.8 which is a huge consideration when carrying all day. The firepower can be easily regulated to your preference (.44 spl. to many different loads and bullet designs of .44 magnum). You do not have to spend a bundle having the gun tuned to perform. Smith has already done an excellent job of this.

Mine is setup with Crimson Trace Laser Grips, but in daylight hours the factory "HiViz" open sights are very quick to dial in on a target. Once you run some rounds through you will get the feel of the recoil and should become aware, comfortable and very accurate with it. No....it's not a .22, but having this "field artillery" in standby when out and about sure does put you at ease!

Just my 2 (or 4...?) cents.

....If you happen to find dog poop on your boot, DO NOT kick the dog....think it through for a moment.....
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Postby MikeMcD » Wed Oct 06, 2010 4:18 pm

D-Gulch, you and Michael1 have good points. After an epic episode with Taurus I have joined the American Only club regarding revolvers. S&W is fine if you don't push 'em too much. Ruger is awesome, but large. D-Gulch, I have gotten groups like you have on anything 2-3" barrel... Do you think you have an exceptional Alaskan or are you an very good shot? My great shot days are long behind me, so I am getting a 5" Redhawk, which has done relatively well for me in the past. Generally, the big revolver is for fishing. In camp in big bruin country I would opt to have a decent rifle handy... The 5" Redhawk seems to pack on the left for fishing pretty well. I am glad the Ruger Alaskan is working well out there for lots of guys, it is one impressive tool...
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Postby nelson@rainierconnect.com » Wed Oct 06, 2010 7:47 pm

Each of you have taught me a lot. I ordered the 4.2" Ruger Redhawk along with the HK45 full size with the LEM light trigger. I am crawling out of my skin for them to arrive and take them out to the base for some practice and maybe get some good advice on the proper use of handguns.

I'll let you know how they fire and what ammo seems to work best. My first choice will be Hornady.

Am also going back to my Browning recurve as I regain my strength. It has a beautiful smooth pull at about 53#.

Again thanks my friends
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Postby drygulch » Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:07 pm

Nelson, glad to hear you've got your order in. You'll love the Redhawk. Good luck in the future.

MikeMcd, I of course think I have an exceptional Alaskan; however for someone with a 91% vision loss I guess I'm not too bad of a shot. I always qualified as "Expert" when I was working as an LEO. Put that behind me in '96; but I keep up my shooting skills.

I really do like my Alaskan 454; but I do like my Blackhawk 44 mag. also. That's my deer gun along with my Puma 454 lever action.
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