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Posted: 3/3/2011 6:17:00 PM EST
I'm wanting to add a wheel gun. I bought a SP101, in a 3 inch, .357 a few months ago. I thought it was a good add and that my wife would enjoy shooting it. Well... she hated it. It had to much recoil for her so it went down the road. If I add a wheel gun it has to be a cross shooter, meaning my wife has to be able to shoot it and not be afraid of it. I was looking at the Ruger GP100 or maybe the S&W 386 in 4 inch thinking that it would be tamer in recoil for her to shoot. Is this the way to go? or recoil going to be worse? Thanks ahead of time.
Link Posted: 3/3/2011 6:20:46 PM EST
[Last Edit: 3/3/2011 6:22:30 PM EST by ColonelHurtz]
Downloaded to .38 Special?

The GP100 is a much bigger heavier gun.
With the same load it will have less recoil vs the SP 101.

Get the 4" or 6" stainless.
Short barrel revolvers are snappy.
Link Posted: 3/3/2011 6:34:27 PM EST
Thanks for the reply. We never tried running .38's in it. One of the reason for the .357 was the option to run .38's if we wanted. If figured that if we shot .357's without issue then the .38's were a moot point. We are going to the range on Sat. Maybe they'll have a 4 inch to shoot. She liked the snub for the weight and I think a 6 inch is going to be to Dirty Harry of her.
Link Posted: 3/3/2011 6:53:11 PM EST
Download to .38 spl standard load and give that a try.
Then try a hotter load and then a +P.
You might find a happy medium before you need get a bigger gun.
The Scandium/Titanium models have even more recoil because the gun is lighter.

Big ass .357 revolvers are a handfull.
Lots of women can't lift them and they're not really the thing to slip into a purse or pocket to carry.

The little snubbies, airweights, hammerless, alloy frame, etc. models are not recreational guns.
They are designed for carry and concealment and the price you pay for the light weight and small size is recoil.
No 2" barrel gun is an ideal target or plinking gun.
Link Posted: 3/3/2011 6:55:09 PM EST
the SP 101 has alot of bark. for a noob it can be intimidating. some women may or may not like it. she could learn to get use to the recoill and report if she practiced enough. my friends wife was deadly with hers.

id try some 38s if you can. or if you know someone that reloads, make some light loads 357s.

you could go the GP100 or S&W x86 route, but i think the weight would be an issue. sometimes it just takes time and alots of practice to make it better.
Link Posted: 3/3/2011 7:46:45 PM EST
Thanks for the help guys!
Link Posted: 3/3/2011 9:33:20 PM EST
THIS GUN looks interesting.

It fires from the BOTTOM barrel, which makes the muzzle more controllable.
Link Posted: 3/4/2011 2:03:50 AM EST
Get some 38 Special 148gr HBWC Target ammo.Very mild recoil in the SP101. If she thinks that is too much then you need to get her a 22.
Link Posted: 3/4/2011 2:33:23 AM EST
Originally Posted By TUBBY:
Get some 38 Special 148gr HBWC Target ammo.Very mild recoil in the SP101. If she thinks that is too much then you need to get her a 22.


This, I can easily shoot this thru my smallest wheelguns.

Accurate bullet, probably still one of the best non hollow point designs in .38 spl. If they get accidently loaded in backwards when reloading, they work even better in a defensive situation.
Link Posted: 3/4/2011 5:59:31 PM EST
One of the best reasons to buy a .357 is that you can shoot .38 Spl wadcutters which are relatively cheap.

As others have said, short barreled revolvers have some snap to them. For recreational shooting, a four or six inch is best. Most women that I've known prefer the four because of the weight issue.
Link Posted: 3/14/2011 7:08:55 PM EST
My wife loves her 4" GP100.

I love to tell the story of the first time we went shooting with it. I had already taken it out once to get the sights regulated. We went up to the local gravel pit. I had already gone over the basics of operation at home and she was already familiar with the safety rules. I walked her through loading 1 .38 round and firing, just to get a feel for the gun. We did single loads for a bit then I set her up with a full cylinder and let her go. She is being very accurate and actually put a round into the end of a 4"x4" at about 20 yrds with her 2nd shot. I went to the other side of the truck to practice with my Glock. A few minutes later she tells me she's out of "bullets" and do we have more. I tell her to poke around in my range bag and there a couple of boxes in there. She comes up with a box of .357 Magnums I had brought to shoot for myself. She double checks with me that these are for the revolver and I tell her "Yes, but those are magnums and they'll have extra kick. Look for the ones marked .38." She says, "I'll try 'em." I'm figuring, this ought to be cool to watch. She loads up a cylinder and lets one rip. *BLAM* Then she lets out this "Woooooo Hoooo!" shout and then *BLAM* *BLAM* *BLAM* BLAM* *BLAM* "Woooo Hoooo!" She had the biggest grin. Then she wound up shooting up both boxes of .357 and the other box of .38 before I knew it.

She was hitting everything she was aiming at too. Now I can't get a divorce, because I'm afraid of her skills.

Link Posted: 3/16/2011 1:31:11 AM EST
OP since you already got rid of the SP101 consider the following for your next purchase.
Lightweight guns with short barrels are the greatest to carry and the has the loudest and most recoil.
Larger guns are heavy which makes shooting heavier loads easier.
Middle ground would a medium frame, medium barrel length (4") such as the Smith K frames, Colt Troopers and Ruger Security/Speed Sixs. These can be had in both .38/357s but should be shot more with the .38s then .357s
Medium frames designs specifically for the .357 are the Smith L frames and Ruger GP100 but add more weight and bulk.
Next time you take her shooting highly suggest that you start with some target .38 wadcutters, then some 158 gr standard pressure loads followed by +P loads. If she is able to control those then try the .357 starting with some mid range loads before full boar heavy bullet loads. High velocity and bullet weight will have more recoil then lighter weight bullets at lower velocities.

CD
Link Posted: 3/16/2011 4:23:23 AM EST
OP, depending on the particulars of "down the road", I'd check about getting the 101 back. Have your wife handle/shoot a full size revolver sure, but, if the weight is too much, or depending on her hand size, the size is too big to comfortably handle, you made need the 101 again. My wife can't easily handle any revolver larger than my SP101. If yours is adverse to recoil, the smaller & lighter J-frame Smiths are a no-go.

The 101 is a good balance between size and heft. Yeah,full-power .357 loads can be stout, but all .38spc loads are, IMO, tame in it. I typically carry Buffalo Bore's .38 +P 158gr SWCHP in mine and it is one of the hottest .38 loads you will find and it's much milder than .357. The first time I shot a regular .38 wadcutter round in the 101, I honestly thought I'd had a squib it was so mild. If .38's in a 101 are too much for you wife to shoot, she's likely to have a hard time finding a handgun she will be ok with. No offense to her.

Good luck
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