Gun and Game Forum banner

1 - 20 of 82 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone have opinions as to the better of the three "main" magnum revolver cartidges for all around use?
I'm talking combination home defense and "shooting the bear or cougar who charges you while you're fishing" use here. (Not hunting as that goes off into a whole different technical field and I have little interest in handgun hunting). Man or beast as it were.

.357 mag is very easy for me to shoot. While the 125 gr. hollowpoint is the well known "best manstopper", I've also read a few stories of fishermen downing large bears with 158 gr. soft point factory loads.
.41 mag I know little to nothing about and my concern here is both ammo availability in remote areas and the long term availability of the cartridge. Will it be a relic in 15 years? Is this cartrige a beast to shoot? Is ammo expensive and available? IS there signifigant advantage over the .357?
.44 mag seems to be the hunters choice, but as I said, is not my area of interest. There are a few stories of bear "dispatch" with them but also of over penetration and non-stoppage of human bad guys. I also recently bought and then promptly traded a Smith 29 because I couldn't shoot the dang thing without it feeling like it was gonna jump outta my hand. While I was impressed with the power, I was dissapointed that I hated shooting it.

(Of course, in the non-magnum world, I only see the .45 long colt as even considerable for the beast part of the "man or beast" requirement. but that seems anemic when compared to the balistics of even the .357 mag. Am I wrong here?)

I'm reading alot of conflicting data about the three cartridges and I'm hoping for some opinions. Thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
377 Posts
Maybe it's my physical size and arthritic joints, but I don't think that I would ever get used to a 44 Mag. I don't have any problem with 357s though, and they would kill anything that I might run into. (I do use a 20 ga. with 03 buck for zombies.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,246 Posts
.357 is my preferance. Its a proven cartridge. It can handle .38 specials for target practice. Ammo is readily available. There is a great deal of variety of ammo. There are many manufacturers of the Firearms, so the chance to find something you really like are much higher. I hope this helps, even though it looks to me like your decision is already made.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
314 Posts
i would say the .44 !!!! you can load up from a 180 gr. to a 300 . you can load them down for plinking or realy hot so you can cook what ever you shoot with the flames comming out the front of the bdl. !!!!!!!
 

·
PUKHA DAWG
Joined
·
3,799 Posts
.357 hands down. If you can't handle the .44 and if you're worried about availability of ammo for the .41 then the .357 is the only choice you have. And a darn good choice it is.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
354 Posts
Outriderdark said:
I also recently bought and then promptly traded a Smith 29 because I couldn't shoot the dang thing without it feeling like it was gonna jump outta my hand. While I was impressed with the power, I was dissapointed that I hated shooting it.
If you hate shooting a gun, you are probably not going to practice with it enough to be optimally proficient. What is worth more to you: knowing that your gun is more powerful but you are more likely to miss or that you have a good chance of getting every round on target? And while .44 is more powerful, .357 is no slouch.

I also share your concern about the future of .41.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
My main thing is I don't like to have to work that hard to shoot something. The 29 was alot of work to keep it in my hand right and get on target. Your right, I wouldn't shoot it enough to be proficient. My initial reaction was to decide on a Ruger Super Blackhawk, since they felt better in my hand.

Then I started thinking I was hung up on the idea of a .44 mag and should look at eliminating it from my "roster" if a .41 or .357 would get the job done.
It's the "beast" factor that fuels my indecision. Am I gonna end up bear snacks cause I nixed the .44 and stuck with a .357.
Of course I'm also told that with very large bears, without a .30 or larger rifle you might as well kiss your hams goodbye anyway.
I've heard it said "If you use a revolver for grizzly protection, make sure you file the sights off so it don't hurt so much when the bear shoves it up your ***."
I like to cover all my bases with what I have, since it's not so easy where I live to trade or buy handguns. It's a long process, so you have to think long and hard before you blow a permit on something.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,218 Posts
My home defense gun is a Ruger .357 Mag Security Six. If it doesn't do the job than I'm in big trouble.:right:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Get .44 mag. Dirty Harry uses one, so it has to be good. It's amazing the extensive and accurate knowledge of firearms you can draw from pop culture.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
I like the .357 Mag. I also like the .41 magnum, I have no use for the .44 mag. The .357 can do most everything and if it is a bit small for some things then the .41 can take it from there and can do everything the .44 can. If I need more power than a .41 magnum then I go with my T/C in .45-70. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,353 Posts
For me I would get the 44 mag, you can't have too much gun. I plan on getting a Ruger Super Blackhawk in 44 mag. Mainly because I have a model 94 in the 44 mag. I have shot the Ruger and I like it. It sounds to me like you have already talked yourself out of the 44 mag, that is cool get the 357 another great round, I plan of getting one of those too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
41 Magnum is the answer

Gentlemen,

This thread is old, nevertheless I have independenty researched the exact same topic and provide my response for those looking to compare the .357, .41, and .44.
I own a Smith and Wesson Model 657, .41 Magnum (6 in). While I am now clearly biased I test fired the .357, .41 and .44 prior to making my decision. In my opinion, the .357 with Magnum round is a solid weapon with very little recoil. The experts can comment on stopping power, but to be honest (I can't put my finger in what specifically) the weapon just didn't do it for me. The Model 29 with Magnum rounds had a good bit of recoil which after 100 rounds was a bit of a pain in the wrist. In my humble opinion, .44 special rounds provided me with less recoil but I still had a gut feeling of just a bit too much gun. Finally I fired the Model 57 .41 Magnum with magnum rounds and fell in love. What was it specifically? I'm not sure...maybe the balance between power and recoil. All three weapons were S&W models so they all look alike, neither was overly sexier than the others.
I recommend going to a gun store that sells all 3 models and simply test fire them. Make your own decision. If I were to rank them I would say: .41, .44, .357. I own my weapon for self-defense (210 grain).
The ONLY drawback to owning a .41 is the ammo cost. Supply and demand dictates you are going to pay anywhere up to twice as much compared to .357 rounds. While this may be a concern for most you can EASILY order it on-line for a decent price or even buy in bulk on-line for practicing. The cost is not a big deal to me, however. Piece of mind, confidence in the weapon and ease of use are my primary concerns...the S&W Mdl 57 is my choice of weapon. It's important to note that the .44 (model 29) was a close 2nd place.

FYI - I am a military service member with fairly extensive long gun shooting experience, I weigh 200lbs and am a pretty decent shot. Choose your weapon based on what you can handle. The .41 magnum is not for the faint or weak of heart.

-Hwy 657
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,954 Posts
If you plan on doing a lot of shooting, the .357 is the only choice. Don't be disappointed about your reaction to the .44 mag, I shot a cylinder full of them once and that was enough for me. Plinking should be fun, not painful. DO get a 6" barrel if concealment isn't a concern. The .357 just isn't it's true self with shorter barrels, and it's much easier to shoot accurately with the longer sight radius. My 6" Colt Trooper would shoot circles around my 4" S&W.
 
1 - 20 of 82 Posts
Top