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Posted: 10/21/2010 11:15:47 AM EDT
Been thinking about a small revolver for keeping in the nightstand.  I've heard almost nothing but good things about the 642, but I have yet to put my hands around one, so I'm wondering what else I might be looking at?  Maybe a smaller Ruger SP101 or GP100?  Or...?

.38 Special +P is fine with me - I don't need .357.  Would like to keep it at around $400-$500 or so.

Thanks!
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 11:48:37 AM EDT
[#1]
IMHO a .38 j-frame is not the best idea for a nightstand gun. I'd prefer something with at least 6 shots, longer sight radius, and possibly a white light.  If you are a revolver man, I'd look for a used S&W 4" K or L frame.

I carry a J-frame almost daily as a CCW with some barami's IWB but, my bedside gun is a G34 9mm with a Streamlight TLR attached giving me 18rnds of 9mm JHP.

YMMV,

Blitz
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 11:55:25 AM EDT
[#2]
Yeah, I suppose you are right - no sense in trying to get a smaller J frame if its not really going to be concealed.  I had wondered if that was the case...
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 11:59:48 AM EDT
[#3]
I love my S&W 642 as my pocket pistol or backup gun. But for a nightstand gun I go with my new large FNP-45 Tactical with 15rds of .45acp it really is a beast.
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 12:06:55 PM EDT
[#4]
I was thinking some simple, so the wife could be semi-comfortable with it too.  Have to do some more reading.....

thanks guys.
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 12:36:35 PM EDT
[#5]
Quoted:
IMHO a .38 j-frame is not the best idea for a nightstand gun. I'd prefer something with at least 6 shots, longer sight radius, and possibly a white light.  If you are a revolver man, I'd look for a used S&W 4" K or L frame.

I carry a J-frame almost daily as a CCW with some barami's IWB but, my bedside gun is a G34 9mm with a Streamlight TLR attached giving me 18rnds of 9mm JHP.

YMMV,

Blitz


This is good info. If your not gonna tote around on your hip, why limit yourself to a light weight, low round count weapon. I'd say 4 inch K frame in .357.
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 12:38:34 PM EDT
[#6]
Quoted:
I was thinking some simple, so the wife could be semi-comfortable with it too.  Have to do some more reading.....

thanks guys.


If your wife isnt a shooter, she would hate you if you made her shoot a light weight J-frame.
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 1:10:17 PM EDT
[#7]
I concur.
No reason for a subcompact type gun in the nightstand.  Full size revolver is just as simple in operation but easier to handle.
Link Posted: 10/21/2010 1:19:19 PM EDT
[#8]
Quoted:
I was thinking some simple, so the wife could be semi-comfortable with it too.  Have to do some more reading.....

thanks guys.


S&W Model 10, 64, or 686
Glock 17
S&W M&P 9

All are point and click.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 4:05:36 AM EDT
[#9]
My wife prefers the short barreled Remington 870 pump shotgun that is on her side of the bed. With that being said she also has the option of a 4" K frame .38 special (model15). She carrys a J frame Centennial model .38 in her purse and has an additional .38 stashed elsewhere in the house. All three guns that are available work essentially the same way. She is not a shooter so this makes sense.

I usually have whatever gun I was wearing that day as my nightime gun. If I was working, then it is my duty gun, otherwise it is most often one of these: Glock 21,Glock 19 ,1911 or a 4"or 5" N frame .44 magnum.

My J frame snubby is simply a BUG for duty use or secondary off duty gun. It is not something I would intentionally choose as a primary gun for a fight.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 4:50:56 AM EDT
[#10]
Quoted:
.38 Special +P is fine with me - I don't need .357.  Would like to keep it at around $400-$500 or so.


There are some used old police wheelguns out there that would serve this purpose well for under $300.  As a "for instance", look at these (not affiliated in anyway, etc...):
J&G S&W Revolvers

That said, don't get too hung up on the ".357 Magnum" thing.  Just because it has ".357 Magnum" stamped on it doesn't mean you have to shoot .357s out of it.  The great thing about a quality .357 revolver is that you can shoot any .38 Special you can lay your hands on all day without worrying an ounce.  Not all wheelguns are rated for .38 Special +P, but with a .357 Magnum you KNOW it'll handle it with ease.

Go handle some guns.  If your wife using it is a consideration, take her along.  Make sure the grip FEELS good in your hand.  If possible, rent/shoot it at the local range.

In your price range you'll find some used S&W wheelguns like the model 66.  I'd encourage you to avoid the current crop of "onboard lock" models - which should be simple to do since you're in the "used" market.

Another option, certain to be poo-pooed by some hereon, is Taurus.  Even a new Taurus 66 will be under $500 easily, possible to find a deal under $400.  You could take the money you save and buy practice ammo.  Remember, it is not so much the gun that matters in a fight as the skill of the man wielding it.  Money spent on ammo and range time is money well spent.



I daresay you've got a good concept for a nightstand gun.  I wish you all the luck on your new purchase and practicing with it.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 8:02:26 AM EDT
[#11]
Quoted:
Quoted:
I was thinking some simple, so the wife could be semi-comfortable with it too.  Have to do some more reading.....

thanks guys.


S&W Model 10, 64, or 686
Glock 17
S&W M&P 9

All are point and click.


Agreed.

I have an XD9 4" w/ night sights.  If I had to make the choice today, now that the M&P is on the market, I'd probably go with that.  Then again, the XDM is nice as well.  
Sometimes modern autos are better for this application, especially if your wife might be using it as well.

That said, I just picked up a used 4" blue GP-100 for $400 OTD, so there are good, modern revolvers that can be had in your price range and intended purpose.
I prefer hand-held lights, so lack of a rail doesn't bother me.  The capacity and trigger pull of a polymer auto still make it the better choice IMHO, but I wouldn't feel underprepared with the .357.

Whatever you get, I'd also recommend a good storage solution for it.  Nightstand drawer is all well and good, but I really like the quick-access gunvaults.  Mostly so that anyone who breaks in doesn't have fast access to a firearm.  Sure, you could easily get in there with a crowbar, but it would slow them down long enough for anyone in the house to respond, armed, or else get away.  There's also the kid issue, but then we know not to play with guns in my house so that's more of a secondary reason.

Another good idea is to attach a clipdraw or similar product to it.  Middle of the night, you need to go check something out, you're probably not going to be wearing a holster.  If you need to use both hands for something, using the clipdraw is preferable to setting the gun down.  Just a thought.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 8:05:17 AM EDT
[#12]
Thanks again guys.  Yeah, this would most likely be put in a finger print reader safe.

I do already have a G19 and a 686 - i guess I was just looking for a reason to buy something else.  :D

I have been kinda eying the GP-100's as well as the new XDM in .45.  I guess I better just take her shopping and see what she thinks.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 11:49:51 AM EDT
[#13]
I bought a used stainless GP100 for $420 that looked like it had 2 boxes through it.  I added hogue grips for another $20.  It was still 200 less than the NIB GP100 right next to it on the shelf.

It's been a good shooter and I've got 6 boxes through it.  Recoil with full power loads is mild due to the new grips and the weight of the gun.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 3:52:08 PM EDT
[#14]
My nightstand weapon is a hi-cap tupperware 9mm with a light. I wanted a point and shoot that would hold enough to get through pretty much anything without running dry.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 4:59:07 PM EDT
[#15]
The 642 is a wonderful gun and has its own place and application. But not necessarily a night stand gun unless its your only gun. Revolvers are unisex (easy to operate and fit more hands) and just as effective. A medium sized k frame or ruger sp might fit your needs and they have better sights and weight than an airweight. And the double action will serve you better in a high stress situation.
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 6:07:26 PM EDT
[#16]
Quoted:
Thanks again guys.  Yeah, this would most likely be put in a finger print reader safe.

I do already have a G19 and a 686 - i guess I was just looking for a reason to buy something else.  :D

I have been kinda eying the GP-100's as well as the new XDM in .45.  I guess I better just take her shopping and see what she thinks.


Excellent idea––- get her something that she can use and wouldn't mind shooting.

Perhaps there is a range around where you could rent various models and have her test fire them to see what works for her?
Link Posted: 10/22/2010 7:17:00 PM EDT
[#17]


This is what my nightstand rocks. S&W 581 NYSP return.

Though mine is brushed finish and wears pachmayrs.

Go mid/full size. Use the added mass to counter the recoil of the +p or magnum loads.
Link Posted: 10/24/2010 4:44:28 AM EDT
[#18]
OK I'll be the desenting opinion.  Get your wife a J frame for nightstand gun.  Smaller frame revolvers are easier for small hands to choke up on = able to press the trigger to the rear without disturbing the sight picture.  Also for those doorbells/koncks/ or noises in the night - if it turns out to be a non threat J Frame much easier to conceal in a pocket.

Now if this is truly a nightstand gun and not a carry gun - do not get the 642 or any airweight.  Get a 60, 640 or 649 in .357.  I would practise w/ .38 and load it with .38 +P of choice.  Heavier steel models will be tamer recoil/ faster follow up shots.  I think you said your wife not much of a shooter - I would add crimson trace grips.  Laser makes sighting short barrel j frames easier for beginer.  Laser also shows what the muzzle is covering.  Laser can be used as a dry fire practise aid.
Link Posted: 10/24/2010 8:40:01 AM EDT
[#19]
OP, just go buy that little 642 No-Lock J-Frame that's calling your name.
Surely you can find a better use for it than a nightstand gun.

...you'll figure it out, I'm sure.

(I bought mine yesterday!)
Link Posted: 10/28/2010 10:04:46 PM EDT
[#20]
My wife has a S&W 386 Night Guard in the night stand. It has the XS Big Dot front sight. It is a pretty nice revolver but it must be zeroed for 10+ yards which is strange for a 2" barrel.

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile
Link Posted: 10/28/2010 11:15:38 PM EDT
[#21]
Quoted:
My wife has a S&W 386 Night Guard in the night stand. It has the XS Big Dot front sight. It is a pretty nice revolver but it must be zeroed for 10+ yards which is strange for a 2" barrel.

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile


Odd that they would not zero it for 25 yards like most guns.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:28:04 AM EDT
[#22]
I believe Smith regulates its 2" guns for 50 feet or 15 yds.

CD
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