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  #1  
Old 05-26-2020, 06:31 PM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Model 19

I currently have a thread going about picking up a H&K USP or a Blem Dan Wesson. But a friend has offered to sell me a used, but excellent condition S&W Model 19-7 2.5 .357 for an all around carry/home defense weapon.

I love wheel guns but don't know that much about them, so I'd appreciate feedback from guys who carry wheel guns. Would you be comfortable carrying this weapon as a primary firearm? Do they need to be pampered, or are they durable? I don't plan on firing anything heaver than .38 +P regularly for practice (.357 for carry).

I read on another forum that the Model 19 2.5" snubbie is considered the Swiss Army knife, do-it-all revolver, which sounds perfect for my needs, but again I'm a neophyte.

It's a 19-7 so it was made in 1996-97, and it's in excellent shape. Thanks.
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Last edited by Vintage68; 05-26-2020 at 07:12 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-26-2020, 07:40 PM
Pizza Bob Pizza Bob is offline
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The K-frame Model 19 is a terrific all-around gun. I believe that the 19-7 came originally with Uncle Mike's synthetic (rubber) stocks which are very nice - people may knock rubber grips, but on a working handgun they are the ticket. There are also those detractors that eschew any S&W with the internal lock (IL)and MIM components. The 19-7 does not have the IL, but does have some MIM components (cylinder release possibly and trigger - on the years this one was made). Nothing wrong with MIM - in many ways superiro to forged parts (flame on). It does have the new sight on it, which means that it is drilled and tapped for optic mounting - not that you would on a 2.5" gun, but some of those red dots are getting pretty small.

Inevitably someone will tell you that it will crack the forcing cone. There is a flat milled at the 6 o'clock position on the forcing cone to accommodate the yoke. This does create a stress riser, but it takes tens of thousands of rounds of hot, light bullet (fast powder) rounds for that to happen. This will last your lifetime and probably the lifetimes of a couple generations of descendants.

The only drawback of the 2.5" barrel is that it doesn't allow for a full length ejector rod. .357 brass will not clear the cylinder with just a push of the ejector rod. It takes a rapid push with the gun held somewhat vertically (gravity helps). Would not be as big a problem for .38 Spl brass - and truth be told, not all that big a deal with .357. Just make sure that you test fire your defensive load to make sure that it doesn't stick.

Learn to shoot it double action and do so with an unmolested gun. Don't get seduced by a spring changeout action job. It is bad enough shooting competition and having the gun go bang, bang, click - it can be fatal in a defensive situation. Practice, practice and more practice.

Good luck.

Adios,

Pizza Bob
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  #3  
Old 05-26-2020, 07:56 PM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Very informative answer. Thanks!
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  #4  
Old 05-26-2020, 08:41 PM
USMM guy USMM guy is offline
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I fully agree with Pizza Bob.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintage68 View Post
Very informative answer. Thanks!
I would not hesitate to carry my 2.5" model 19-5 (Nickel plate) into harms way. But this is a gun that you are going to want to practice with. Particularly if you are going to be carrying a hot round. With hot rounds they are a handful. These guns are not for the faint of heart. Just sayin!
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  #5  
Old 05-26-2020, 10:56 PM
bmcgilvray bmcgilvray is offline
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Pizza Bob said it right.

The ejector rod manipulation does need some attention in practice to insure that empty cases all make their proper exit from the cylinder. This is not a huge deal if one practices the ejection while having some "starch in his drawers."

The 2 1/2-inch Smith & Wesson .357 Magnums aren't too bad at all when it comes to recoil. They're just "livelier" than their heavier brethren. I like them with full-powered 158 grain bullets rather the the popular 125 grain bullet.

Close as I can come to the 2 1/2-inch Model 19 is this 2 1/2-inch stainless steel K-Frame Combat Magnum, the Model 66 (seen here with a 2-inch Smith & Wesson Model 10).




Last edited by bmcgilvray; 05-26-2020 at 10:59 PM.
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  #6  
Old 05-27-2020, 03:08 AM
jc2721 jc2721 is offline
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+1 for the 2.5" 66 and most of what Pizza Bob said. We are denied some of our constitutional rights here in "paradise," so my 66 is a range toy only. As such, I did the spring change and on this particular piece I like it a lot.
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  #7  
Old 05-27-2020, 07:32 AM
bradsvette bradsvette is offline
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The Model 19 is my favorite revolver. I have three, one having a 2 1/2" barrel. Could you defend yourself with one? Sure, but there are better guns for that. Every Police force in America switched from revolvers to semi-autos 30 years ago. Why do you think they did that? Buy the H&K or the 1911.
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  #8  
Old 05-27-2020, 07:42 AM
SOL-INVICTUS SOL-INVICTUS is offline
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Probably the single best choice for all around defence and carry you can make. I have 3 of them. My favorite is actually the latest version with the 2.75 inch barrel, crane lock up and full length ejector rod. If you need more than 6 rounds of 357 in a civilian defensive situation, you need a rifle. Speed loaders can offer a quick option, just as quick in real concealed carry scenarios as a magazine change. I also recommend the rubber combat grip. It allows shooting Hornady 125 critical defense, designed for short barrels. With rubber, 357 is fine, without it freaking hurts. The 357 has greater potential than even the 10mm. It is considered by every credible expert the best defensive handgun cartridge ever developed.

Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk
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  #9  
Old 05-27-2020, 09:30 AM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Thanks Sol. Besides the .45, .357 is my favorite round. If I end up buying and carrying the 19 I’m open to conversion!
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  #10  
Old 05-27-2020, 10:10 AM
Austin_TX Austin_TX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pizza Bob View Post
Inevitably someone will tell you that it will crack the forcing cone. There is a flat milled at the 6 o'clock position on the forcing cone to accommodate the yoke. This does create a stress riser, but it takes tens of thousands of rounds of hot, light bullet (fast powder) rounds for that to happen.
I love K-frames, and S&Ws in general, but it takes far, far fewer than that to give the gun serious issues.
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  #11  
Old 05-27-2020, 10:23 AM
Jim Watson Jim Watson is offline
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If you want to conceal a Magnum, it is the way to go.
Otherwise it is not very flexible. My M12 2" and M19 2.5" are probably my least used guns.
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  #12  
Old 05-27-2020, 10:28 AM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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I’ve decided it’s time for a change, and I’ll be going with the M19. The learning begins!
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  #13  
Old 05-27-2020, 11:11 AM
Big Pete10 Big Pete10 is offline
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I don't know what to say, I like the 19 in any bbl length. Like it best of all revolvers but I carry a 642, light weight, small enough to carry in a front pocket, handles .38 +P. More fun to shoot the 19 or 15 tho.

As for better guns for carry, there are guns that hold more ammo but most of them ain't actually better guns for carry.
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  #14  
Old 05-27-2020, 11:28 AM
bmcgilvray bmcgilvray is offline
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One L-Frame Smith & Wesson lives here, a 4-inch Model 586, but I tend to really ... really like Smith & Wesson N-Frame .357 Magnums and Smith & Wesson K-Frame .357 Magnums and don't care for the L-Frame or J-Frame .357 Magnums so much.

The L-Frame would suit me fine if it didn't have the full lug. I don't like the balance full-lugged barrels lend to revolvers.

J-Frame .357 Magnums, I can do without.
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  #15  
Old 05-27-2020, 11:49 AM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SOL-INVICTUS View Post
My favorite is actually the latest version with the 2.75 inch barrel, crane lock up and full length ejector rod.
Sent from my SM-G920V using Tapatalk
Does the new version have that odd barrel within a barrel set up?
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  #16  
Old 05-30-2020, 06:06 AM
VF-1 VF-1 is offline
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I’ve been packing my well worm S&W 19-3 for many years, and have never felt under gunned. Scoop her up quick, she’ll serve you well!

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  #17  
Old 05-30-2020, 06:13 AM
Plantar5 Plantar5 is offline
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Vintage68. If you didnt already....get it. S&W vintage wheel guns are not only great values, but excellent guns. Ive picked up 2 in the last year.
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  #18  
Old 05-30-2020, 08:33 AM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Originally Posted by Plantar5 View Post
Vintage68. If you didnt already....get it. S&W vintage wheel guns are not only great values, but excellent guns. Ive picked up 2 in the last year.
Bought it and FedEx is delivering it today to my FFL. Picking it up this afternoon and will of course post pics!

BTW, I'll need some recommendations for ammo. 38spl for training, .357 for carry. I have no desire to be the god of thunder and lightning, but I assume 158gr is the way to go for SD ammo? Round nose or hollowpoints for carry in these older wheelguns?
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Last edited by Vintage68; 05-30-2020 at 08:50 AM.
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  #19  
Old 05-30-2020, 12:52 PM
USMM guy USMM guy is offline
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Certainly pretty much anything will work for practice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintage68 View Post
Bought it and FedEx is delivering it today to my FFL. Picking it up this afternoon and will of course post pics!

BTW, I'll need some recommendations for ammo. 38spl for training, .357 for carry. I have no desire to be the god of thunder and lightning, but I assume 158gr is the way to go for SD ammo? Round nose or hollowpoints for carry in these older wheelguns?
Although I would go with something fairly hot so that you will know what to expect shooting full power rounds. Which you should practice with your carry round as well from time to time.

Back in the day when all of the LEOs were carrying these guns the prevailing wisdom was that the 125 grain hollowpoint was the show stopper, and the successful one shot stop rate reflected this. However there has been some evidence over the years that this round resulted in a lot of cracked forcing cones in these revolvers. I have never really seen solid evidence of this, but I have gotten this from a lot of fairly reliable sources.

So I would likely go with something like a 158 grain bullet. But another round that I liked to carry in my .357s. You might want to take a look at as well. If you can find them as they are only available from time to time. The Winchester silvertip, I believe they use a 145 grain bullet. And they are not super hot either more like a .38 Special +P round. I think that they are a good carry round. Snag a box if you see some and see how you like them.

What are you considering for a holster?
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  #20  
Old 05-30-2020, 03:09 PM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by USMM guy View Post
What are you considering for a holster?
Thanks for the thoughtful reply USMM. Same day I paid for the gun I ordered this holster:

https://tuckergunleather.com/revolver-pancake-holster/

I've been looking on the Interwebs for a nicely broken in used one, but had no luck so I went new.
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Old 05-30-2020, 03:21 PM
KyJim KyJim is offline
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A couple of points. First, about the forcing cone possibly cracking. That is primarily an issue when firing a lot of 125 grain .357 magnum rounds. If you practice with .38 spl +P or shoot 158 gr .357 loads, it shouldn't be a problem.

Second, as to carry ammo, I would suggest the .357 magnum 125 grain Remington Golden Saber (you won't be shooting thousands of these). They perform well in ballistic gel and the recoil is very manageable.

As to practice ammo, I mostly shoot standard pressure .38 spl with 125 or 130 grain bullets from any quality manufacturer (Remington, Winchester, Federal, etc.). But, I also usually finish up a session by firing a cylinder of magnum loads. If you shoot a lot of 38 spl, make sure you use a clean inside the cylinders with a wire brush to prevent carbon build-up (the carbon builds up short of the length of a .357 mag case).
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  #22  
Old 05-30-2020, 05:02 PM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Well, i picked her up and brought her home. She's even better than described, and appears unfired! Absolutely gorgeous bluing, and beautiful wood (maple?) grips. Can't believe I got one in this shape.

She's currently undergoing a Eezox bath to protect that bluing, but here are the first two pics. Perfect condition.

Here’s one with the first protective coating of Eezox
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Last edited by Vintage68; 05-30-2020 at 06:13 PM.
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  #23  
Old 05-30-2020, 05:28 PM
GT40DOC GT40DOC is offline
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You did yourself proud. I own a Mod. 19 and a 66, both this 2 1/2in. bbl. I can't imagine ever selling either, and shoot both on a regular basis. I did CCW the 66 for a while, and never worried about not having enough gun.
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Old 05-30-2020, 06:24 PM
Vintage68 Vintage68 is offline
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Thanks. Yes, it does seem very substantial in the hand, and I think six rounds of .357 is plenty for a civilian.
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  #25  
Old 05-30-2020, 08:53 PM
bmcgilvray bmcgilvray is offline
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I always really liked 4-inch Model 19s. Something about a 4-inch Model 19 says Smith & Wesson to me.

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