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Posted: 8/23/2004 11:53:50 AM EST
I have heard that it is a MONSTER to shoot. But this comes from the same guys who can't stand to put 300 rounds through their Model 29 w/ 6" barrel...or a 45 Colt for that matter. So that tells me that the guys I shoot with are a buncha wussies.

So...what do you guys that own them think? Is it a weapon that you carry a lot and shoot only a little?
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 10:13:13 AM EST
Treelander,
I did quite a bit of researching on this...could not find any reliable sources, had to have one anyway so I went and bought one yesterday...have not been able to shoot it yet today...rained out aournd here. Range report coming this week. I shoot quite a bit of heavy 44 and 45 colt loads out of Ruger Blackhawks...300gr LBT's in the 1250-1350 range and do not consider these unbearable...hoping the new Smith 329PD is tolerable enough to become proficient with...and some continual maintence, carry alot and shoot...some.
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 10:19:24 AM EST
At 26 ounces it won't be too bad. I have a 3" M29, and shoot it extensively, sometimes in BUG competition. It is a hoot! After 100+ rounds, it does get tiresome. But the smile is worth the insult!

The M29 is 40oz, compared to the 26oz of the M329. That will nearly double the free recoil. So shooting LOTS of hunting ammo is NOT prescribed!
Link Posted: 9/6/2004 4:33:26 PM EST
Good info guys. Looking forward to the report duecemag.

I can shoot a model 29 6" all day long. My hand/wrist/arm never hurts. No big deal. I figure that I could try out different 44 Special loads...for day to day shooting, and then save the hunting type loads for when I am being chased up a tree by a feral hog.don't ask!

Link Posted: 9/12/2004 12:45:23 PM EST
Range report:

Let me start by qualifying that I am primarily a single action pistol shooter...multiple Ruger Blackhawks and Super Blackhawks in 44mag and 45 colt. I handload for these pistols, using Cast Performance LBT's and Beartooth hard cast, mostly in 300gr, some in 280 and 320gr. All over heavy doses of H110...19.0-22.0gr depending on the bullet. Basic 44 load is 300gr cast over 21.0 grains of H110...produces 1280fps chronographed out of 7-1/2 bbl...pleasure to shoot.
I have also on occasion shot some 454 Casull out of a 7-1/2" Freedom Arms.


NONE of these are even close to the recoil of this 329PD. It is truly a hand canon in a light package. I realize I am somewhat spoiled to the easy recoil produced by a single action grip design, that allows the pistol muzzle to flip up...thus reducing energy felt on the web of the palm.

I shot 5 different loads today:
Factory:
Sterting with PMC 240gr TMJ....stout but not bad
Federal Gold Medal Match 250gr TMJ (Sierra Matchkings)...almost like the PMC
Speer 270gr Gold Dot soft point - getting really stout

Handloads
280gr Beartooth hard cast over 20.0gr H110 Fed 155 primer....hard to handle
300gr Cast Performance LBT hard cast over 19.0gr H110 Fed 155 primer....harder to handle than the 280 grain. (both loads with heavy crimp to eliminate any cylinder jump)

Recoil is primarily felt in the web of the top of the palm between the thumb and index finger...might be similar to other double actions...don't have enough experience with many to compare to...especially in the 26oz category. Wrist feeling it too now that I have to type.

All shooting done with the wood grips...wanted to get that out of the way so I could get on with taking these beatuies off and replacing with the rubber Hogue.

Group size varied from 2-4" at 25yds with a sandbag under the right hand wrist. For comparison, with a tailored handload out of my Blackhawks I am usuall in the 1-2" range with 5-1/2" and 7-1/2" bbl...but would definitely be within MOH (minute of hog) all open sights.

All in all shot about 40 rounds before I had to call uncle at the range...had to be able to drive home. If you plan to shoot lighter 44 mag loads or 44 special loads it is certainly workable...if you wanted to shoot alot of heavy hard hitting loads...make your own call for it.

Good news is the sights had enough adjustment to cover the spectrum of ammo/loads. I have had trouble in the past with enough adjustment to bring the point of impact down enough to zero with 300gr heavy loads. Trigger pull on the single action mode was sooth and crisp, double action was long and heavy. All shooting done single action.

For a back country carry gun where big animals with teeth and claws can eat you when weight is a premium yet still with potent power this gun will do it. For shooting at the range all day, and never seeing the field, pick one that has more weight behind it, will make shooting more enjoyable.

Hope that helps. If you have any other questions, let me know. I will also report back once the rubber grips are in play.
Link Posted: 9/12/2004 5:14:35 PM EST
damn good info duecemag. I appreciate it. Look forward to the review with the Hogue rubber grips.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:30:41 AM EST
No recoil at all, from what I understand, they have all been recalled by S&W. Not sure what the issue is
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