There is always so much chatter about what guns are “best”; for protection, for hunting, for carry. Personally, I prefer a revolver, and I’ve seen some pretty derogatory comments about revolvers over semi-autos. Friday, went to the outdoor shooting area for some plinking, taking both my .357’s, two shotguns, a 222 and our 35+ year old, NIB, Winchester 30-30. Because this is not a formal range, we can set up our targets what ever and how ever we wish. For the rifles 50-75 feet, maybe a little more. For the handguns, 20-30 feet.
Both shotguns are Mossbergs, finally getting to shoot my new pistol grip shotgun. I wanted this because I wanted something shorter than the standard, and this pistol grip still gives the longer barrel for more accuracy with some distance. And a sawed off shotgun is Illegal!!
The 30-30 was incredibly accurate, unfortunately, the ejector was pretty weak. It is a lever action, and shell would pop out, but without enough oooommph to go very far and would just tumble down along the side of the gun.
The .222 is scoped, and also accurate. Bolt action, the injection spring on that one is weak and it wouldn’t always push the next cartridge up.
When I first went to get a handgun, our local guy did what seems to be standard and pushed me to a little snub nose .38. In this case, a Ruger LCR. It took awhile before I realized the problem was the thing was just too small for my big hands. While it is still my concealed back up, my carry choice is a Ruger GP100 in 4″. The other .357 is an old S&W Model 19-4, 6″. Both are very accurate, nice to shoot (the S&W is a lighter gun than the Ruger, but both are nicely balanced). At short ranges, the .357 has the punch of a .45. It is not much bigger in diameter than the .38 or 9mm, but definitely has more push.
But what makes these guns really nice is their accuracy over longer distances. The .357 cartridge, with the longer barrels gets those bullets out there to the rifle targets. It might have been their limit, but I could hold my own against the rifle bearing guys. When it comes to high accuracy at truly long distance, the rifle wins hands down, but when in need, the .357 will not disappoint for self-defense; near or far!