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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, guys! Another ‘old school’ revolver-loving guy here with some questions.

I have been away from shooting and revolvers for far too long and I am thinking about getting either a Taurus Model 66 or a Ruger GP100 in the 4” barrel range (S&W in this economy are simply out of my price range). Whichever I choose will start out as a range/home defense weapon and should I get my CCW it might be my carry weapon for awhile. I have only viewed the online at this point but both are really nice-looking weapons.

Wondering if anyone here can give me a comparison between the Taurus and Ruger as I am not familiar with Taurus at all and have only slight experience with one Ruger from back in the 1970’s. Of course I had heard all the stories about Taurus quality not being very good back in the 1970’s when I was far more active with buying handguns but from what I have been reading they have really improved over the years. I won’t get a chance to handle either one in person until my son comes home from the Air Force for a visit Superbowl weekend. I promised him I would wait until he was here before I went to check out the local gun shops so he can go with me and I thought I would seek some knowledgeable opinions beforehand.

I am curious about overall quality, fit and finish comparisons and also opinions on the difference between their double-actions out of the box. I used to carry a S&W Model 66 as my duty weapon when I was a cop (1975-1979) and it was an excellent revolver even though the double action was nowhere near what my personal Colt Python had right out of the box. I even had the S&W Model 66’s action worked on by a competent gunsmith who had worked the action on a friend’s S&W Model 19. That Model 19 had the smoothest double-action I had ever fired other than my Python but he couldn’t get the stainless Model 66 to quite the same level as the Model 19. He said the stainless was harder to work with than the steel in the Model 19 but the Model 66 was dramatically better than the factory double-action when he finished it. I ended up buying the Python (6” blued) because my friend would never part with his Model 19 despite my repeated attempts to get him to sell it to me.

I used to often carry my Python and even a 6.5” S&W Model 29 (ala Dirty Harry) concealed off-duty back in the old days when I was a police officer but I was younger and more willing to carry BIG, HEAVY guns back then! I used to carry my 4" Model 66 a lot, too, and that was much easier to conceal. I really like the idea of the 7th round with the Taurus if it doesn't make the cylinder too large should I decide to carry it but the cylinder size is not nearly as important if I keep it for a home defense weapon.

I am partial to the traditional look of blued weapons but have nothing against stainless (and I like that stainless is, well…..stainless! LOL) so I am open to getting either when I finally buy. How is the factory bluing from Taurus and can anyone here compare it to the bluing from Ruger?

By the way, if you hear any thumping noises while reading this, it is me banging my head against the wall for selling my Python back in the early 1990’s. That is very near the top of the pile of unwise things I have done in my life! Sold the Model 29 about that same time but of the two, I miss the Python MUCH MORE! LOL

Okay, that should be more than enough questions for now. I didn't mean to write a novel here! LOL

Thanks, guys!
Scott
 

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Yep, the GP100. They're built like a Tiger tank. If you're going to conceal carry also look at the Ruger SP101.
 

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Welcome to the forum. My son is also in the Air Force. Back to the topic. This is a Taurus forum and I do own several Taurus firearms that have performed flawlessly, but, the Ruger GP100 is probably the best new revolver you can buy today. It won't be your Python, but then not muck could.
 

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I am a huge Taurus fan with a big weakness for their snubbies! Taurus quality has improved immensely since the early days and their revolvers are no longer sub standard by any stretch of the term. Probably the closest thing you're going to get to a Smith for about half the price. Many folks here will attest their Taurus large frame revolvers handle just as good if not better than their Smith's. That being said the GP-SP lines are hard to beat. Double locking cylinders, one piece solid frame design, shoot the hottest reloads you want and still have the same lock up after 10k + rounds. Ruger also has a solid warranty. They are solid, Duty Grade revolvers and do have stout triggers(with clean crisp break and nice reset), they are built right, especially if you reload.
 

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A ruger will be heavier and some people have an issue with the controls. But they are built to last. The taurus will serve you well if you want a carry piece because they emulate the smith&wesson more so the profile will be a little less than a ruger. Nothin wrong with either.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you for all the replies so far. They give me some good opinions when it gets to be 'decision time' although I know I will actually have to handle both weapons to determine which one I prefer. I'm also going to consider 'used' revolvers, too. I would love to come across a Model 19 or Model 66 in decent shape at a decent price so I could add those to my considerations.
 

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yep GP100 for what you listed you are looking for.
 

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I have both - a blued Model 66 with a 6 inch barrel, and stainless GP100 with the 4 inch barrel. The Ruger is a nice, rugged gun, and easy to shoot, but my Taurus is tighter and very accurate. The bluing is deep and very dark, and is holding up well. I think you could not go wrong either way, but do not discount the Model 66. BTW, I bought mine "used" for $275, but it did not appear to have been fired very much -- it was still full of the shipping cosmoline. The Ruger cost substantially more - almost twice as much. Good Luck!
 

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The Ruger GP100 is an excellent gun, But, my Taurus 65 357 is also excellent. On my wish list is a Ruger SP101 357 3" but if I find a Taurus 605 357 3" before I find the SP 101 I would buy it. Taurus gets a bad rap from a lot of people, IMO, Taurus is an excellent gun, a lot cheaper then others. I use to have a 605 snubbie, that I used for carry, it hurt my arthritic hands so traded it for my Glock 19. It was a great gun. I can shoot my M65 all day and not hurt at all but its to big to carry. I guess what I'm trying to say is it all comes down to how the gun feels in your hand.

Was at the range the other day and there was this young guy with a brand new S&W 357 6", don't know the model number but he was really up set when he blasted thru the first 6 rounds and couldn't eject the spent shells. He paid around 900 for the gun, let the gun cool down and tried again, same thing happened. Maybe it was cheap ammo, maybe the gun. He was very upset to say the least. I was real proud of my Taurus 65 that day:)
 

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Having had both, I feel the finish is better on the Taurus, and its easier to carry concealed(not by much). Actually, I feel the trigger is better on the Taurus, though the
Ruger gets the top marks in shear toughness & durability. I guess it boils down to what fits your hand best, and doesnt impact your wallet as much.
 

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Having had both, I feel the finish is better on the Taurus, and its easier to carry concealed(not by much). Actually, I feel the trigger is better on the Taurus, though the
Ruger gets the top marks in shear toughness & durability. I guess it boils down to what fits your hand best, and doesnt impact your wallet as much.
Thats interesting cause I found the exact opposite in my comparison.
 

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I prefer the GP100 but having sais that I really perfer the Ruger "Six" Speed Six ,Police Service Six ,and the Security Six They are bit smaller & lighter than the GP100....and just look cooler



 

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I am a Taurus guy, but own BOTH and the GP100 is superior in many ways, not all ways possible, my 66 is still crisp and has great trigger pull, but the GP100 is heavy duty and much better performance and better looking...
 

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I've got a dog in each race! No fight at all.

I own two model Taurus 66s. One is an older 25+ years blued, 4 inch barreled gun. It's seen too many to count .357 magnum/.38Special rounds go down range. Lock up is tight. No cylinder play, no end shake.etc.. And it is accurate. The new one is a 7 shot model that is as accurate as my older 66. Both have anything in a 158gr.bullet that will hit to point of aim at 25 yards. That's for magnum or .38 Special.

I also own a Ruger GP-100 in .327 Federal magnum. I am impressed with the way all the mentioned revolvers are made.

The only caveat is that if a steady diet of full power 125gr. JHP rounds are going to be used then the nod goes to the Ruger.

I've shot a lot of full powered heavy bullet weight rounds and magnum light rounds out of the Tauri. No problems at all.

This is a case of what works best for the individual as far as what fits them and their needs.Try them both and see which works for you the best.
 

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I have a model 66 4" SS and I love it. It's very accurate! My 12 year old daughter loves to shoot 38s through it. We have close to 1000 rounds through it and not a single complaint.
 

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I wanted to get a GP100 but couldn't afford it. Found out about a deal on a 20+ year old M66 (nearly identical to the Smith Model 19) for about half the price that the used GP's were going for. I don't sit around and long for a GP any more :)

Smiling icons aside, IMO, the M66 is utterly smooth and very accurate. I guess the only thing it won't do is live through millions of hot loads like it is said of the Ruger. If you like the Smith 19, check out the old M66.

BTW, kudos to you for doing this with your son - he won't forget this!
 
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