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Revolver-Time

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 10, 2009
Messages
216
Location
Savannah, Georgia
I have been thinking more and more about what purpose heavy caliber double action revolvers serve. From heavy loaded 357s up to 480s why have a double action revolver? At the range you are going to thumb back the hammer to be as accurate as possible. When you see that deer coming in you are going to pull the hammer back and settle in for a good shot. On the big kickers you can't get the sights back down out of recoil fast enough that you can't cock the hammer. I can see DA in 38s, 32s and 22s but on the big stuff I don't get it. I like my Redhawk but I find myself shooting it as a SA.
 

the fatman

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 23, 2009
Messages
325
Location
Deltona Florida
:D I am currently shooting two ruger Alaskans in 44 and 454 and every time I've tried double action it is down right embarrassing. I have actually done better with a semi action in both hands. And I'm not very good left handed. So I in long winded fashion I concur. :lol:
 

JWhitmore44

Blackhawk
Joined
Oct 23, 2008
Messages
987
Location
NW Kansas
I think grip angles are different between single and double actions. If the grip doesn't suit you, you will have a hard time shooting accurately. The Redhawk grip does not suit me.

When large things are coming at you they may or may not have sharp teeth and long claws, the speed of a double action may be more desirable. Being able to hold the muzzle against fur and keep pulling the trigger may be a plus. I'm not saying a single action can;t be fast, but it usually takes more practice.

Now with all that being said, my only double action is a 38 :) My big boomers are single actions and one includes a 3.5 inch barrel. The single action grip suits me better. I wouldn't mind having an Alaskan though.
 

pisgah

Buckeye
Joined
Apr 17, 2006
Messages
1,633
Location
Upstate SC
I think that the main rationale for DA is for fast use against up-close grizzlys. But since probably 99% of the owners of monster DA revolvers will never get within 2000 miles of a grizzly unless they visit a zoo, the DA feature is pretty much moot.
 

VAdoublegunner

Single-Sixer
Joined
Oct 24, 2006
Messages
459
Location
Virginia, USA
I agree, grip angle has a lot to do with it. Some just can't shoot a SA grip well. Most people well trained in using SAs, CAS folks for example, can shoot them accurately, and fast, with heavy loads. In some circumstances, DA may have an advantage, i.e. you gotta fire fast up close, or the bear is chewing on your offside arm and you may have trouble thumbing back the hammer.

Also, in the case of S&Ws big bores, their experience was in DA frames not building SAs, so obviously that's what they went. No reason to compete with FA, Ruger, or custom builders there.

DAs can have exceedingly strong frames. The Redhawk certainly does. But I would opine that up until the S&W X-frames, most big bore revolvers were built on SA frames for the very reasons you mention.

That's one of the reasons I recently traded a 7.5" .44 Mag Redhawk for a second Lipsey's 44 Special. The 44 Special carries easily and I can shoot it very well. But I kept my 45 Colt Redhawk, just because it can take monster handloads. Not that my Blackhawk 45s are any problem in that regard, but sometimes a heavy DA is a good option. And I already had a good S&W 629-4 anyway.
 

Ruger1441

Blackhawk
Joined
Apr 11, 2004
Messages
618
Location
Lehi, UT
I find that I am a little bit more accurate shooting double action. This includes my big boomers. I think my grip is more consistant shooting double action.
 

the fatman

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 23, 2009
Messages
325
Location
Deltona Florida
Ruger 1441 I agree it can be done. Along time ago I used to shoot 357s with a neighbor. We agreed that when shooting single action I did somewhat better than he did. But he was definitely better shooting double action. He could even hit things tossed out rolling on the ground. Maybe some one should do a poll better double or single?
 

Jimbo357mag

Hawkeye
Joined
Feb 22, 2007
Messages
10,228
Location
So. Florida
By staging the trigger on a double-action you can be very accurate. Also there is nothing like ripping-off several 44mags at any target downrange. If the recoil is a little much you can just download or shoot specials. There are lots of reasons for big double-actions revolvers not the least of which is the fun of shooting them. :D :D

...Jimbo
 

maxpress

Buckeye
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Messages
1,280
Location
Central Washington
i think double actions have there place. yes hunting and out of town i carry a big single. that being said i dont trust the small calibers for SD so in town i ussually carry a double action though with lighter loads. course thats when im not carrying a glock.
 

reakin

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 4, 2002
Messages
258
Location
Western PA
As mentioned, the recoil of a DA revolver tends to shove straight back whereas the SA revolver rotates upwards. Much different feel, which may or may not appeal to different folks.

Plus, I prefer the loading/unloading of the DA swing out cylinder.

reakin
 

EarlFH

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 17, 2007
Messages
361
Location
Montana
pisgah":1xwp8tyc said:
I think that the main rationale for DA is for fast use against up-close grizzlys. But since probably 99% of the owners of monster DA revolvers will never get within 2000 miles of a grizzly unless they visit a zoo, the DA feature is pretty much moot.

Hey! I resent that. I've been within 500 miles of a grizzly several times, and it wasn't a zoo. :lol:

EarlFH
 

captainkirk

Blackhawk
Joined
Jul 30, 2002
Messages
538
Location
Abilene, TX
EarlFH":2irk9423 said:
pisgah":2irk9423 said:
I think that the main rationale for DA is for fast use against up-close grizzlys. But since probably 99% of the owners of monster DA revolvers will never get within 2000 miles of a grizzly unless they visit a zoo, the DA feature is pretty much moot.

Hey! I resent that. I've been within 500 miles of a grizzly several times, and it wasn't a zoo. :lol:

EarlFH

My thoughts exactly, 2000 miles is a long way.
 

batmann

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 6, 2004
Messages
307
Location
Indianapolis, IN USA
I think the grip angle is the most important thing in shooting either a SA or DA. I shoot my Rugers DA better than my Smiths because the Ruger SRH Alaskan moves my hand up for the high hold better than my Smiths.
I love my SA Rugers better because they just seem to point naturally for me, but that is more of a personal thing. Given the choice of only one, I would probably keep my Blackhawk .44 Spl over my Alaskan.
 

CraigC

Hawkeye
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
5,197
Location
West Tennessee
All good observations. Some folks just prefer double actions. I like both and own quite a few double actions but prefer a good single action to all others.
 

Sonnytoo

Blackhawk
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
631
Location
florida
CraigC":ukq3kdry said:
All good observations. Some folks just prefer double actions. I like both and own quite a few double actions but prefer a good single action to all others.

I have favorites in both camps. Hard to pick...really hard.
I definitely do NOT shoot better in double-action. I believe it takes a great deal more practice than I've put into it. I generally shoot all guns single-action.
Sonnytoo
 

Papa

Bearcat
Joined
Sep 2, 2005
Messages
74
Location
Nashville, TN
There's only one real answer,

TO GIVE US ANOTHER CHOICE!! :D :D

I shoot both, and on the big bores I shoot them single action too... :wink:

Papa
 

Predator2525

Bearcat
Joined
Nov 3, 2009
Messages
26
Location
Rancho Cordova
All my handguns are double action with the exception of my s22 s&w. Though I agree that cocking the hammer with practice can be very quick, I know that there are times that it is not feasible or possible, (riding off road mc, atv's, horses etc.) controlling the vehicle while shooting from an angle makes it impossible to use both hands. And bouncing around, I prefer to have a full grip on the gun rather than pulling the thumb off to pull the hammer back. I also noticed when I pull the hammer back with my gun hand, it changes the grip and I have to reposition. I've had a couple of occasions that double action would be the only recourse. I use both when practicing but yes I do tend to lean toward the single action. The bears where I grew up weren't as big as grizzlies, but just as dangerous and move very quickly. The last cougar I encountered also had the advantage on me and the only reaction was draw and pull the trigger if it charged. With the exception when I was actually hunting, all my encounters with animals seemed to be suddenly and at angles where I was the disadvantaged. Granted, I'm sure not everybody is going to be in those situations, but... I'm sure glad I have the option! :)
 

Kanook

Buckeye
Joined
Aug 7, 2009
Messages
1,123
Location
FL
When being charged by a large wild boar, a double action is god-send, unless the single action is a auto.
 
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