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a ccw revolver

A Closer Look At Concealed Carry Revolvers

Why would anyone bother with concealed carry revolvers, some people ask, since there are so many more advantages with modern guns? So many striker-fired compact pistols out there with greater capacity, lighter triggers and easier responses, it would seem like there just isn't as much point anymore.

But a whole lot of people out there still love their LCR, SP101 or Smith & Wesson J frame. They have endured the advance of time and firearm design. But what's the obsession? Shouldn't revolvers go the way of the dodo now that there are bigger, better, more technologically advanced handguns out there?

Actually, no. Despite whatever their perceived shortcomings might be, a CCW revolver is every bit the solid choice of concealed carry gun today as they ever were. Let's go over a few reasons why.

Revolvers Are Reliable

why revolvers for ccw

While there are plenty of autos out there that can be counted on, revolvers are known for cast-iron reliability. Not that they can't have hiccups of course (for instance, Colt Pythons will shoot themselves out of time if you give them too much .357 Magnum) but very little will keep a revolver from going "bang" when you squeeze the trigger.

There are fewer working parts and fewer things that can go wrong. Fewer shots on hand, to be sure...but you can count on every one of them to go out the barrel.

Shooting A Revolver Couldn't Be Simpler

Every single thing ever said lauding of striker guns over their operational simplicity applies equally to a concealed carry revolver. There are pretty much two steps: point, then shoot. Reload as needed.

The days of single-action revolvers being the dominant form of the gun have been over since the early 20th century; double-action and double-action only firing mechanisms are the dominant designs of revolvers - be they compact for concealed carry or full-size for handgun hunting.

However, the drawback is that the trigger pull is a bit hard, as the typical double-action trigger pull on a wheel gun is between 10 and 14 pounds, depending on the model...but with practice, incredible speed and accuracy are definitely possible.

Revolvers Last

you can get a lifetime of use out of a revolver

Another benefit of revolvers is that they can last a REAL long time. Working pistols from the 19th century appear in auctions all the time. Thousands of people still shoot an heirloom Model 10 or Police Positive that a distant relative carried on the job. The same goes for concealed carry revolvers such as the S&W Lemon Squeezer, Iver Johnson Safety Automatics (which are revolvers), Colt Detective Special and Cobra revolvers, S&W J-frames and Ruger Speed Six snubbies.

Provided the pistol hasn't been fed a diet of high-pressure ammunition, revolvers tend to take a lot less wear than semi-autos. The garden variety .38 Special, .45 Long Colt or - in rarer cases - .44 Special rounds produce much less chamber pressure than semi-auto rounds. The ubiquitous 9x19mm, for instance, generates upward of 33,000 psi of chamber pressure. By contrast, .38 Special generates about 17,000 psi.

Combine that with a solid metal frame, you get a firearm that isn't going to get "shot out" for many, many years. So long as the timing (the cylinder rotating into the precise position over the barrel) remains correct, you can do a whole lot of shooting.

Concealed Carry Revolvers Meet Magazine Restrictions

concealed carry revolvers

For states like California, New York, Maryland and others that heavily restrict the number of rounds a handgun can carry, concealed carry revolvers are virtually unscathed. While smaller concealed carry models typically hold 5, the maximum commonly found is 6-8. This is all well under the legal limit, meaning those that carry revolvers don't have to worry about shopping around for magazines.

Revolvers are Iconic

Iconic SW revolvers

Old style Smith & Wessons have a tried and true appearance which a lot of gun owners appreciate. There are plenty more revolver manufacturers out there than S&W, but the iconic look is somewhat appealing for some concealed carriers. And something that's that good never goes out of style.

A good number of people appreciate the aesthetics of a firearm. Blued steel and wood never go out of style, even for a concealed carry revolver, and black plastic just leaves so much to be desired.

Do you carry a revolver for your concealed weapon? Why or why not?
Let us know in the comments below.

Sam Hoober

About The Author

Born in southeastern Washington State, Sam Hoober graduated in 2011 from Eastern Washington University. He resides in the great Inland Northwest, with his wife and child. His varied interests and hobbies include camping, fishing, hunting, and spending time at the gun range as often as possible.