This is a tough one, but I must say Ruger, if for no other reason than they are the toughest guns in existance. If someone blows up a Ruger, they have done something REALLY stupid! Smith has better triggers, but you can slick up a Ruger to where it is pretty good.
This is a tough one for me . I own several from S & W , and Ruger . I voted for Ruger because S & W quality and workmanship isn't what it used to be .
But S & W has alot more models and barrel lengths to choose from . If we were talking pre 90's only my vote would have been different.
I hate to say this but my vote goes to smith for best all around revolver.And also Iam going to say something i never thought I would say. I getting to the point of carrying revolvers over auto's!I use to laugh at dad and other people who favored revolers or autos but after first hand experience,a good .38 or .357 smith has been known to stop man or beast in his tracks.Also I have never had a misfire with my revolvers.Even with the cheapest sorriest ammo.My next gun hopefully will be a 4"or 6" smith 44mag for some real stoipping power.
I hate these polls because they are a hard choice to make in just picking one. Smith & Wesson has a great reputation and makes great guns. A lot of people overlook other gun makers just because of their reputation. I can remember when no one would buy a Savage rifle to save their life because it wasn't a Remington or Winchester. Ruger makes great revolvers. You can use the butt as a hammer, the barrel as a pry bar and still shoot the ace out of cards at 25 yards.
The GP100, SP101, and Redhawk lines will always have a place in my heart and my gun safe.
However, don't think for one second that I won't buy a 686 and 442 because they will both create a sucking sound from my wallet before too long.
Taurus and the other gun makers do make good guns for the money. But for a revolver that absolutely, positively, has to work every time....Ruger and S & W for me.
Colt has always made great guns, but they way they won't do business with common folk civilians has made them lose my respect.
__________________ -NRA Life Member -Eagle Scout -"We must all fear evil men. But, there is another kind of evil, which we must fear most; and that is the indifference of good men!" -Boondock Saints "In life, we can never escape the rain...the rain must fall." -Myron Carter
I vote Ruger the toughest, strongest on the planet. But i think the Smith's has a little better triger. And I would say the Taurus,are thrid place. I have a Taurus model 65, about the same age as the Ruger.But it is showing a good bit of wear.And the Ruger is still like new.No wear at all on the Ruger.I should say that the Taurus has been a good gun.As far as trouble free. But they cant seem to take full power 357 loads, for an extended period of time like the Ruger.
Normally I'd vote S&W, but I have had the best revolver shooting experience with an old Charter Arms Undercover. I can shoot that thing like nobodys buisness, and it's never given me any trouble. I never liked the feel of Rugers, and for some reason, that unmodified undercover has a nicer trigger than some gunsmith adjusted Smiths I've known. Mabye it's a fluke, but I like my little cheap snubbie.
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Location: Oakland California- The middle of the SF Bay Area gun-grabbing hell!
Isn't this like saying who makes the best tires? Best revolver for what purpose? Plinking, target, hunting, silhouette, ICORE, different answers for each application. Or is it best for quality, fit, finish, reliability, strength? Again, different answers, so I vote OTHER!
2. FREEDOM ARMS
Rugers are my choice!!! But I also own a few S&W's that I really like. Just like the Rugers more. Rugers are easier to find, and buy in my neck of the woods. My Rugers have been completely problem free!!! Had to have a little work done to a couple of S&W's to resolve problems....
I've been trying to break one ruger or another for several years now. Still haven't been able to break one. Well, Ok, I got the front sight to break on a 10-22 once and a rear sight on a mini-14. Shouldn't count though. I've seen some smiths take a beating too, but I'm a Ruger man at heart.
I cast my vote for Ruger. However, I'd say the best revolver depends on the application. If you shoot a lot, especially magnum ammo, I'd say Ruger is the way to go. For the casual shooter consuming only a few hundred rounds per year, SW might be the best pick - they have great fit and finish, and the triggers are typically better than a Ruger. However, with lots of high pressure ammo, the Rugers seem to hold up better than SW. I used to shoot silhouettes with a Ruger GP-100 loaded with compressed loads of Blue Dot. A couple of guys shooting 586's shot similar high pressure rounds and both of their guns were showing signs of wear when mine was fine. Matter of fact, I still have it and it's had approximately 25,000 rounds through it. The only sign of wear is the ring around the cylinder where the idexing pawl drags on it. It will still shoot 1.5 inch or better at 25 yards with max loads of H-110 and 158 grain projectiles.
I have to agree w/Punchie;; what do you want to use the revolver for.
My Uberti 1873 45LC's are a bit old fashioned but I'll put the up against any moderm revovler in a target enviroment. For carry , well yes there are better, my Ruger Security Six 357/ 4 in stainless barrel. For concealability, get a 380 auto.
I have to say Ruger.......single actions may be the best revolvers of all time. Not as fond of their double actions, but then again I'm not really a double action guy anyway.
As far as S&W........I'd not buy a S&W on a bet since they decided a few years ago to join forces with the anti-gun movement and sign that stupid "safety" agreement. Might pick up a used one, but the S&W people will never get another dollar from this cowboy.
I second the trigger feel on the Charter Arms undercover .38 special. I have a nickel plated undercover. In stock form with nothing done to it by me, it has a trigger feel as smooth as butter. I also have a SP-101 and it is as rugged as a truck, but the trigger of the 101 can't compare to the Undercover. You don't ever want to cock the undercover in a tense situation, you don't need to, because it is a very easy and smooth light pull trigger then. Anyone know what the new stainless models are like?
For sheer ruggedness and absolute reliability, I had to vote Ruger.
That said, I also have and regularly use S&W revolvers. Where Ruger excells in rugged reliability, S&W does in finesse and "urban" utility. It's my seriously considered opinion that a J Frame revolver is a must have in every handgun battery.