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Thread: Bulldog 44 spcl. Opinions ??

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Default Bulldog 44 spcl. Opinions ??

    Every now and then I think about getting another pocket-blaster. The smallest thing I hve now is an old Colt Python.

    Has anyone owned and shot one of the 44 special charter Arms Bulldog's ?? They seem light enough, although the couple I have played with at shops suggests that they need some action smoothing...

    Any folks have opinions????
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    Default Bulldog .44

    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    Every now and then I think about getting another pocket-blaster. The smallest thing I hve now is an old Colt Python. Has anyone owned and shot one of the 44 special charter Arms Bulldog's ?? They seem light enough, although the couple I have played with at shops suggests that they need some action smoothing... Any folks have opinions????
    I have had one for years: Surprisingly accurate, the new ones are strong enough for low volume use - never had an issue. I am like them. I think they get a bad rap. I have not put more than 1,000 rds through mine, but it has functioned fine. I don't use heavy loads.

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    Junk 30 years ago, junk now

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    Go in search of a S&W 696 or the Taurus equivalent and you'll be happier in the long run...I had a couple of these in the 90's. Great carry pieces.

    Another item in the long list of stuff I should have kept.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    I would look for an old Lew Hourton RB 3" S&W 24 and forget the Charters
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    If you could find a Ruger sheriff mod 3 3/4" barrel in 44spec it also would be a fine gun
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Owned on in the first year or so the model came out. Shot it out within a year using factory and lighter loads. Got it fixed, got rid of it. About 5 years later I gave them another chance with the same results. Never again.

    If you're going to buy one and not shoot it much, that's one thing. But if you're going to practice 100 rounds a month or so, fuggeddaboudit.

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Well, from here and another site, they don't sound so great. I am looking for a light-weight jacket pocket shooter. I already have all sorts of heavy magnum stuff and a few big Autos'... For years I had a S&W Bodyguard
    I am not impressed by 38 special terminal performance and air-weight 357 mags are kinda spendy these days...
    While I prefer a revolver as a jacket pocket gun, maybe I will just buy the smallest 40 cal auto I can find.... Like a KAHR or something like that...
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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    There is always the Bond Arms derringer if you can do it in two shots
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    The S&W 696 is light years ahead of the Charter 44. The cost may be double, but worth every penny.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

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    A friend has had the Charter Arms Bulldog for quite a while now. He doesn't shoot it much, but likes it for what it is..

    My favorite pocket gun of all time, with enough weight for the recoil, and typically surprisingly accurate for a ramp-sighted 'snub-nose' .357 Mag? A stnls stl Ruger Speed-Six.

    Ruger made the Speed-Six both in .357 and .38 Spcl, and possibly a .38+P rated, as well.

    Those that I've had (we've had 3 of them now) have all been surprsingly accurate for a 2-3/4" bbl, and two of the three had very nice, smooth actions for factory originals.

    The Speed-Six offers a smaller grip than the Security-Six (the Sec. Six also has adjustable sights), and you can probably find a Speed-Six stnls in .357 mag for somewhere near $350 if you look around. Maybe a bit more. Maybe a bit less.

    And, as stated, the weight of the thing is very nice for the recoil of most (even a bit stout) 158 grain loads.

    I think Pachmayer and their competitors still make a variety of fairly compact grips for it, too. I had a couple styles of Pachmayers for mine, and neither one protruded badly under a thin Spring jacket, carried in an older (no snap/retention strap) Bianchi X-15 shoulder rig I still have.

    The more recent one is now my wife's town and bike-riding gun. Fits into a Desantis fannypack holster nicely, too, as well as an inside-waistband holster..

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    The S&W 696 is light years ahead
    About how big and heavy are they? I do not think I have ever seen one...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    About how big and heavy are they? I do not think I have ever seen one...
    The 696 was a 3" 5-shot .44Spec on an L frame with a round butt. They also made a "unobtanium" version for a while (396?)

    The revolver was one of the best CCW pieces I've ever had. Little bigger than some, but not obtrusive since I was already carrying a 3" S&W M19...even the holsters fit.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    Brownbear hit the nail on the head. My aunt has carried one most of her life; it's at least 30 yrs old. But she never shoots it. I think that's the key with those guns. They're an affordable option, but they're life limited under constant use. I like them because I'm sick to death of the S&W ra-ra-ra and the accompanying price gouge. (Not to take anything away from S&W; they're a well built, high quality gun, in general, but I don't think they're a good value for money spent.) If you're looking for a gun to holster and not shoot, the Charter Arms will fit that niche and not put 44 caliber holes in your bank account. Don't expect to get 5k rds through it.

    I think ruffle hit on a good option, too. I owned a Ruger Security Six for many years, and I can't say enough good things about that gun. Reliable to the bitter end and accurate enough to compete with. The only gun I've ever almost regretted selling.

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    I am one of the S&W fans and I would have to say I have not been dissapointed with the money spent on any of the ones I have purchased. That said I think Ruger makes some great guns that are very reliable and don't cost too much. I have a ruger SP101 snubby .357 that shoots well and is a nice size. I put a Hogue grip on it because I didn't like the factory ones. It isn't a 686, but it is a good little gun that packs a wallop and I like knowing it is in the console. Might want to look at one.

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Yeah it looks like the CA- Buldog idea is fading... I know I looked at them a back when the first came out a couple-three decades ago... And back then I just stuck with my old 2.5 inch round butt Model 19. (actually I wore out 3 model 19s and one model 66)
    I used to have an old S&W Bodyguard as a jacket pocket gun but it was eventually shot loose. Plus 38s in a snubie are marginal.
    Since I have a couple N-froame in 44 special and a couple SAA Colts as well, I thought a pocket gun in that chambering might be interesting. I guess Taurus makes a model 445 in 44 special... What S&W should have done was made a K frame 5 shot... But their lawyers probably made them use the thicker L frame.

    My wife carries a KAHR CW9 that works very well and is pretty concealable. I just prefer a revolver for that sort of thing and like big slow moving pieces of lead.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    I just prefer a revolver for that sort of thing and like big slow moving pieces of lead.
    I hear you on the K-Frame...I'm a died in the wool K-frame nut. Loved those M19s and I had a 67 that would drive tacks.

    I had the Taurus version as well- it was a nice piece.

    You know- if your pockets are deep enough and you're not opposed to SA- the Freedom Arms 97 in .44Spec or .45Colt with the short barrel and a round butt is a dang NICE piece and barely bigger than a snubby .38Spec. J-frame.

    Believe Gunblast did a write up on one and a buddy of mine had one built and packs it everywhere. Gun and Price- just wow on both accounts though.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    I have a Bulldog and as many have said, it is rough, but....it is a carry gun and NOT a shooting gun. I loaded some 250 gr Keith over Universal and it is not any fun to shoot, but it does penetrate and should deal effectively with 2 or 4 legged threats short of browns or maybe an irratated moose. It's not much bigger than a 5 shot .38 but sure packs a bigger thump. I think the reasonably hot .44 SPl with a hard cast will out penetrate a .45 ACP or anything smaller and the Bulldog is a lot easier than a micro 1911 to carry. Yeah...I wish the quality was better but it is also half the price of any comparible almost pocket gun and it goes bang everytime so far.
    Somewhere along the way I have lost the ability to act politically correct. If you should find it, please feel free to keep it.

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    The S&W 396, 396 Mountain Lite, 396 Night Guard, and the highly prized 296 AirLite are all aluminum framed .44 Special L-frames. With titanium cylinder they are still sizable but very light. They also had some physical limitations that too many people ignored (finish, titanium wear, bullets, etc.).

    The 296 would be the best for your pocket blaster desires. Good luck.

    More info: http://smith-wessonforum.com/s-w-rev...-me-about.html

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    I am in the same boat, my love my 4" .45 Colt Redhawk, but it is hell to wear in a car with bucket seats.

    I like my .38 snubbie, it sure is comfortable IWB, but I share your reservations.

    What I read in this thread about the bulldog is a pretty fair representative sample of what I have read elsewhere. Never owned one, but this kind of concensus means I probably won't buy one, I practice with my stuff often.

    I looked at the Ruger Super Redhawk Alaskan. 2" barrel, .45LC/ .454 Casull. My 4" Redhawk weighs 46ounces empty, the 2" Super Redhawk weighs 44 ounces empty.

    I am currently looking at these two guns:

    This one reads about like a Bulldog, apparently some of them work great and some of them not so great, a similar one with a different butt had a very pleasant for carry power to weight ratio in the 3.5" barrel:
    http://www.cimarron-firearms.com/Spe...undererStd.htm

    And I just found out about these yesterday by accident, Mainer says his talo grip isn't too bad in recoil, and the profile shouldn't print too bad under a garment. Sorry about the gunbroker link, the gun is not on the Ruger website as of today.:
    http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/Vie...Item=309447227

    I am kinda hoping to pick up the Ruger in a few weeks... Uncle Mike and Simply Rugged both make holsters for it.

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