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Yes, it is true

Revolvers are obsolete. Oh, they’re fun to shoot. I like shooting them. And they’re fantastic as a hobby gun. I’ve only ever owned two (one was given to me) because auto loaders are just superior.

36 Responses to “Yes, it is true”

  1. J T Bolt Says:

    Pot stirrer

  2. JTC Says:

    That you Ahab? So, what gun for Moby? I’ll go for that 625 a post or ten back.

  3. Joshua Says:

    Revolvers still have one very good use: Magnums. A fine variety of revolvers exist in big calibers, with only the Desert Eagle to compete among the autoloaders. Show me an autoloading .500 S&W that isn’t even more ridiculous than a .500 S&W revolver, and I will concede that revolvers are truly and utterly obsolete (and begin saving money so that I might purchase said autoloader, particularly if it’s available in double-stack mags).

    That said, I’d go for a 10mm auto Glock before I got a .357 magnum revolver, as I fully appreciate the benefits of the newfangled ~125 year old technology of autoloading pistols.

  4. sdo1 Says:

    No, it is false.

  5. Michael D. Gale Says:

    Revolvers still have their benefits –
    No safety. You don’t have to work the action or flick a lever or push a button to be able to pull the trigger and make lead come out.
    Jams – you really have to have a cylinder misaligned to get a revolver to jam. Now I’m that about 20-eleven people are going to jump in with the antedotes of 2 million rounds thru their glock/1911/taurus/HK. But be honest – ever seen a revolver stovepipe? Ever have to yank the slide of a revolver? Of course not. πŸ™‚
    I will say this – I don’t ever intend to CC my Dan Wesson 357. That’s why God invented Glocks – for those of use that never learned to flick off a safety before firing from his prophet JMB.

  6. Huck Says:

    Stove piping, feed ramp hangups, magazines dropping out, magazine feed fail. I’ve never had any of those happen with revolvers but I know several folks who have autos who have had those happen.

    The more complicated something is, the greater likelihood of something going wrong. Revolvers, lever action rifles, and double barreled shotguns are my favs. Guns like those are never obsolete for people like me who like simple reliable shootin’ irons. πŸ™‚

  7. nk Says:

    Oh, ok then. I’ll take any you don’t want off your hands, you pay shipping. Why have the things around the house where you can trip over them or drop them on your foot?

  8. A Critic Says:

    adjective: obsolete

    1. no longer produced or used; out of date.

    Uncle, I think this word means not what you think it does.

  9. mikee Says:

    Revolvers are easier to unload safely, and easier to determine if loaded or not, than a pistol. For a novice shooter, that is a consideration worth considering.

    The old “one in the pipe” with the magazine out has caused more than a few negligent discharges in the last century, for everyone from policemen at shift change to some dude who was just cleaning his pistol when it went off.

    So revolvers have that going for ’em.

  10. tkdkerry Says:

    @JTBolt: I was going to say “grenade tosser”. πŸ˜‰

  11. HL Says:

    Here we go.

    Being more reliable in theory doesn’t make it better in practice. Swords never jam, either, nor do they need to be reloaded…but they are still obsolete, even though they have been killin’ longer than guns.

  12. HL Says:

  13. John A Says:

    Obsolescent, not obsolete?

    Huck, while a revolver may be/seem less prone to problems I think they are actually a more complex piece of machinery than mag-fed semi-autos.

    Heh, saw this a while back, a reference to automatic pistols:
    http://www.forgottenweapons.com/union-auto-revolver-addition/
    So, auto vs semi-auto?

  14. Ellen Says:

    I’m not as strong as I used to be. It takes *work* for me to rack the slide on my Taurus 9mm. When I’m loading it, that’s not so bad — but the potential for trouble when UNloading it is there. It’s still easy to rack the slide on my Walther P22, but 22 long rifle is not a good defense round.

    Revolvers don’t present the same difficulties.

  15. Roadkill Says:

    Yeah glock 19s are so fucking great when you have to deal with bears or are just hunting deer. Just like all the other ‘obsolete’ manual action guns still take a fuckload more wildlife than semis. Revolvers still have some advantages over semis. I respect they they’re not as good, but are they BAD?

  16. Frank Says:

    Thank goodness. Now maybe they’ll be cheaper to purchase, since they’re obsolete.

  17. weambulance Says:

    Caleb makes good points, but he’s writing from a limited point of view. Revolvers do suck compared with semiautos in the vast majority of cases that involve self defense against other people and animals up to big dogs. For most people in this country, that’s all they’ll ever have to worry about, and semiautos are just fine.

    That is, until you need to shoot a moose or grizzly. Or you want something you can shoot out of a jacket pocket more than once because you spend 4 months each year wearing very heavy clothing in a subarctic environment.

    Revolvers are not obsolete, they’ve just become specialty tools. Sure, 95% of the time my Glock 19 does everything I want it to. But 5% of the time, the Glock 19 (or any other reliable semiauto) is not going to get the job done, and I choose a revolver instead.

  18. comatus Says:

    We now have artificial insemination, and in-vitro fertilization, and gene splicing. You know who and what that makes obsolete, right? You are more than welcome to your Owstrian efficiencies medd uff plesstick.

  19. Sigivald Says:

    Revolvers are obsolete.

    For self defense (the focus of the linked article), yes.

    For other tasks, depends on the task; it seems like automatics can’t begin to compete for big-bore hunting.

    For plinking and target shooting I don’t see a lot of practical difference.

    (To comment on things up-stream, slide spring and unloading issues in automatics are fixed by a tip-barrel system (ala Beretta and the Taurus copies), which are a mature technology up to .380ACP.

    I can’t think of any reason it shouldn’t be possible to adapt a tip-barrel system to a heavier round, though it would require some work; maybe roller-delay or toggle-delay on the frame-slide interface?)

  20. Matthew Carberry Says:

    Any number of semi-autos in 10mm, or .45 +P/Super, loaded with hardcast bullets, can realistically take care of the “animal defense niche” for almost anything in the Lower 48.

    For the biggest bears, or up here in Alaska, drop-in .460 Rowland conversions for the 1911 (I know, barrel fitting), M&P, XD, and Glock .45s give a standard frame sized autoloading option that doesn’t require a Desert Eagle or Win-Mag and let you use the same gun for urban carry and field use.

  21. random dude Says:

    i think snub revolvers are not obsolete. especially for the pocket carry/backup gun role. Snubs do seem to fit (print less/draw better) some peoples pockets better than small semis.

    If all you can carry is a very small gun, a snub is probably a better choice than a similar sized 380. A similar sized 9mm could be a comparable option, just have to verify the small 9 works ALL THE TIME, lint, limpwrist, etc.

    Another thought. Lets say you NEED a carry gun by the end of the day. You can buy a revo, a box of range and a box of defense ammo; shoot it at the range and call it good to go. A semi, 10 boxes of range ammo in one day… Then two to four boxes of defense ammo… Plus maybe a cleaning around 400 rounds or so… It can be done, but thats alot of extra time and money spent in one day.

    another cool revo tidbit
    lets say you only have one gun, your cleaning said gun, and someone breaks in and you need it NOW.
    A revo, put rounds in and go.
    A semi, if it is field stripped, you put the gun back together, load a mag, then go. Depending on the gun this could go from a few seconds to almost a minute.

  22. Huck Says:

    “Huck, while a revolver may be/seem less prone to problems I think they are actually a more complex piece of machinery than mag-fed semi-auto.”

    John, autos have more working parts plus the need for accessories(magazines)and that equals MORE complicated, not less. And as we all know the more complicated a item/object/tool is the greater the likelihood of a malfunction.

    It all boils down to what each of us finds works best. I personally prefer to trust my well being to a handgun that’s simple and reliable. And to me that’s a revolver.

  23. Roadkill Says:

    Semi autos are dependent on their ammunition being consistent. Mechanically they’re both just as likely to malfunction. Revolvers are just harder to get back into operation from a malfunction. The sorts of customized and specialized loads for hunting various game are a strong reason why manual actions are still top of the game. A semi’s need for its ammunition to perform so consistently limits their utility.

    Also, in regards to the hunting semi-autos. I can walk into a gunshop and plink down less than $600 and walk out with a Super BlackHawk with a 7 to 10 inch barrel. For 44mag I could even walk into any Walmart that sells ammo and walk out with at least Winchester Silvertips. I’d like to see you find 460, 10mm, or even 45 ACP +P using bullet suitable for hunting so easily.

  24. Ned Says:

    Uncle – are you nuts to start this conversation? Or just looking for the most comments, ever, responsive to a gunny article?

  25. SayUncle Says:

    No not nuts. There simply are better guns for defense than any revolver.

  26. JTC Says:

    “(I believe) There simply are better guns for defense than any revolver.”

    There. Fixed your purely subjective and totally unproven statement for ya Unc. “Better”? Try defining that one in this context.

  27. SayUncle Says:

    Any situation in which you need to reload

    any situation where you must manipulate the gun, actually

    Speed of reload

    For people with weaker hands, trigger pull is better

    Capacity

    And that’s thinking about it for less than 10 seconds.

  28. JTC Says:

    Any stress situation where you need to instinctively and unthinkingly point and squeeze to save your life.

    And that’s thinking about it not at all…and that’s the point. And why (for me) a revolver is a “better” gun for self defense. YOMV.

  29. SayUncle Says:

    I can do that with a Glock.

  30. JTC Says:

    Yes, so how (other than your thrice-stated capacity superiority, largely irrelevant when self defense shootings are overwhelmingly low count) does that make your Glock “better” in that situation?

  31. SayUncle Says:

    So, except all those reasons why it’s better, tell me why it’s better?

    My wife can’t pull the trigger on a DA revolver very well. Nor can my daughter or son.

    Shootings don’t have low count of rounds fired but low counts of rounds that hit.

    Ease of reload does not equal capacity. It’s about ease of manipulation.

    Revolvers are fine guns. But I wouldn’t use one for self or home defense.

  32. JTC Says:

    Sorry, took wife and the dachsie for a walk.

    I believe that you believe that a pistol is the better choice for you, and that makes it so.

    I also believe that for me and many others, the comfort zone dictates revolver.

    Does that make one or the other “better”? And more to the point of the original post and its source material, does your personal preference make mine “obsolete”? How absurd when both are equally lethal and comfort and familiarity largely determine accurate and dependable usage in ugly real world use.

    As to “all those reasons”; need to reload, speed of reload, ease of reload (or “manipulation”), capacity…all relate to high shot count; very important when running a comp shoot, not so much in a defense shoot. In spite of your assertion that self-defense shootings have a high shot count, stats do not support that, unless you have cites that I am not aware of that say most involve more than five or six rounds fired.

    Leaving your last defense of “better” that women and children can’t handle a revolver’s trigger weight and travel. Leading me to say maybe a little trigger work is in order, but hey, if a pistol gives them a level of ease and confidence that they are more comfortable with, then that should be their choice…and choice and comfort level are the crux of it all, right?

    Doesn’t make your pistol “better”, or my revolver “obsolete”, which were your assertions, and the basis of my objections. In the context of real-world self defense, it really comes down to subjective choice; I’m not criticizing yours, and I prefer that you not criticize mine.

  33. tkdkerry Says:

    Wow. I went away for a couple of days. Should have stayed here with a tub of popcorn!

  34. SayUncle Says:

    Well, I can’t account for how you feel. But if a revolver works, go for it.

  35. JTC Says:

    “I can’t account for how you (think, believe, choose).”

    There ya go, fixed that one for ya too.

  36. Dan F Says:

    Revolvers might be good for backup carry. Many are wider than current ‘mouse guns’, so they may be losing ground there.
    It’s been argued that revolvers make better heirlooms. That really depends on taste, provenance, and condition. How about a Savage, a Colt 1903, grandpa’s bringback Walther? It’s not the operating system that makes it desirable.

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