The Revolver: Not For New Shooters?

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Duration: 5:33

PDN Contributor Barret Kendrick of Bearco Training has observed that one of the most common guns recommended to new shooters by family, friends, instructors, and gun-store staff is a small, lightweight, carry-size revolver.

PROS

The mechanism of a revolver is easy to understand. It has a cylinder that opens and the user can see the chambers. The ammunition only goes in one way, and it’s easy to close the cylinder. It’s a simple design and has few reliability problems. A new shooter may believe that all he has to do is close the cylinder and he’s ready to take on the bad guys.

MISCONCEPTIONS

It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about a semiautomatic or a revolver – both require handgun training for the user to become proficient. Barret discusses some of the misconceptions people have about revolvers. First, is a revolver easier to shoot than a semiautomatic?

TRIGGER PULL

We can expect a revolver like the one Barret has in the video to come from the factory requiring 12 to 14 pounds of pressure to activate the trigger. This is not easy for a new shooter, especially one who may have weak fingers/hands for any number of reasons, and intends to use the revolver as one of their self-defense weapons.

Modern striker-fired semiautomatic pistols are usually at about 5 to 6 pounds of pressure.That means you need double the amount of strength to activate the trigger on a revolver as on a semiauto.

FELT RECOIL

Second, as a revolver fires, it doesn’t have any moving parts like a semiauto does. On most semiautos, when it fires, the slide reciprocates back and forth. Due to the recoil spring, a lot of the felt recoil is masked, and the shooter doesn’t notice it much. This means a shooter can have a faster pace of fire with a semiauto than a revolver.

To sum up, due to the revolver’s heavy trigger pull and felt recoil, it will be easier for a new shooter to learn how to shoot a semiautomatic pistol than a revolver. Revolvers are great firearms but not the best choice for novice shooters.

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