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Thread: Redhawk "shootability" - 5.5" vs 4" barrels

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default Redhawk "shootability" - 5.5" vs 4" barrels

    ...esp with heavy loads.
    When it comes to "shootability" (not sure how I'd define this - maybe points good, shoots good?), has anyone shot both the 4.2" (KRH-444, Mod 5026) and 5.5" (KRH-445, Mod 5004) Ruger Redhawks enough to comment on pros/cons of the 5.5"?

    Last year, I was reading about a line of high performance .44Mag ammo, the most potent of which were limited to certain revolvers. The Redhawk was one of those last revolvers standing, so to speak. Then at a local gun counter, a RH445 owner strongly favored the 5.5" barrel over the 4. Makes sense, but the weights don't seem close enough (49 vs 47oz) to make much difference. Maybe it has more to do with overall length (11" vs 9.5") or how the weight is distributed. Is the 5.5" significantly better for regularly shooting heavy .44Mag loads? Thanks.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    I've shot the 7 1/2 and 3" in 454 and still have the three

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    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    I have shot numerous Redhawks and Blackhawks. All of them are great pistols but I do think the longer barrels make shooting stouter loads a little more pleasant. I have settled on my 4" Redhawk mainly due to it being easier to carry due to less weight and the shorter barrel not getting caught on everything. I carry on my hip so this is more of an issue than if I was using a cross draw chest rig.

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    The longer barrel should provide more velocity down range. Maybe not a lot.

    The longer barrel allows for better accuracy due to the longer sight plane.

    The longer barrel has the standard base for the front sight and you can get an XS 24/7 Express large bead front sight with the express rear making for fast sight accusition compared to the factory sights. The pinned front sight on the 4in barrel will not allow for a simple drop in replacement of the sights. Actually I don't think you can even modify the XS Express base to fit.

    Installing these drop in sights on my 5.5 RH was the best thing I ever did to improve my shooting accuracy and speed with heavy loads. I would not carry a gun in the woods for bear defense with out them.

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default XS sights on 5.5" but not 4"...

    Quote Originally Posted by AK Ray View Post
    ...The longer barrel has the standard base for the front sight and you can get an XS 24/7 Express large bead front sight with the express rear making for fast sight accusition compared to the factory sights. The pinned front sight on the 4in barrel will not allow for a simple drop in replacement of the sights. Actually I don't think you can even modify the XS Express base to fit...Installing these drop in sights on my 5.5 RH was the best thing I ever did to improve my shooting accuracy and speed with heavy loads. I would not carry a gun in the woods for bear defense with out them.
    AK Ray,
    That's interesting. I found a pic from their website.
    Thanks.
    Last edited by 6XLeech; 03-16-2010 at 23:14.

  6. #6

    Default I like the 5.5"

    For me, it balances well, adds a little weight over the 4' to absorb some recoil and gives decent velocity and energy. In fact, I had purchased a blued RH online recently in 7 1/2" and had Stan Jackson cut it down to 5". He put a nice Brownell's replaceable front blade sight on it and the gun in hand feels very good. The Redhawk has a really meaty barrel, so the weight is still there, not a bad thing, in my book, for a magnum pistol. Also, some might like the Hogue grips on the 4", but I can't stand them. I prefer the factory wooden grips.
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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    To me "shootability" is a combination of balance and sight radius. I haven't shot those guns side by side to see which one would work best for me, but from shooting a variety of DA handguns, I find that 5-6" barrels seem to balance and shoot much better in my hands. Hence, while a 4" barrel would make for a lighter slightly easier to pack gun, I'd go for the shootability of the 5.5".

    I've never understood the argument of picking the lightest easiest to pack gun when one gives up shootability. If you're not planning on shooting, don't carry anything, and if you do need to shoot it, it should be as accurate as possible.

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 6XLeech View Post
    AK Ray,
    That's interesting. I found a pic from their website.
    Thanks.
    They don't show up in the website for RHs, but Midway USA lists them for sale. That is where I bought mine a couple of years ago.

    These sites are the ones used by Bowen on his custom guns way back in the last century. His work made XS take notice and start producing them for the consumer. I read a couple of very old G&A articles about his guns and the comments on the sights and I decided I needed to try them out. The original sight company used by Bowen was out of business I learned, but I also learned that XS had bought them out. OR there was a name change.

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default Grips: 6 o' one, half a dozen of the other maybe...

    Quote Originally Posted by mauserboy View Post
    ... some might like the Hogue grips on the 4", but I can't stand them. I prefer the factory wooden grips.
    The Hogue rubber grip makes sense for absorbing recoil energy, but I have a friend who prefers the wooden grips too (and shoots well), and recall reading a magazine piece explaining the wood grips allowed the pistol stock to slide in the hand more and so, helped diffuse (defuse too) some energy that way.
    A high grip on the revolver is another tip, one I've read that seems to help.

    Do you like the wood grips because it shoots better, more comfortably for you? Thanks.

  10. #10

    Default Basically they fit my hands better

    But they also allow the hand to stay higher up on the grip frame, which is the opposite of what the Hogue does. The Hogue brings the hand farther down from the barrel axis. I feel the recoil less with the wood grips. The SBH .44s I've owned were harder to shoot recoilwise. Also, I like a good looking set of wooden grips. Black plastic grips are, black plastic.

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    I'm with mauserboy on the Hogue grips that came with my 4 inch 45. They don't fit my hand very well, too big which makes the gun off center in my hand and like he said, it sits higher. I can't see where they do much good absorbing recoil since they don't cover the backstrap at all. I did pick up some factory wood grips that fit my hand much better. I shot a few hundred rounds last summer some of which were full house 360gr loads with no prob. I then bought some pachmeyers off someone here on the forums just to try. They fit better than the hogues for me. They do cover the backstrap and my hand rides higher. They are on the gun now, at least for now.

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    Default RH wood grips

    The primary reason I shoot a RH is that I have small hands. I can not shoot a S&W with control and comfort due to their size. My RH came used with rubber Bianchi grips and at the same gun show I found a set of factory wood grips and swapped them out without ever shooting the gun while dressed in rubber. I just could not close my hand for a proper hold on the rubbers.

    I have no problems shooting "hot" rounds like the AK Backpackers with the gun dressed in wood.

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    I agree with the other guys,I don't like the Houge grips that came on my 4". My favorite for the redhawk are Pachymr Presentations. Wish they made them for the Super Redhawk.
    As for as shooting the 4" compared to the 5.5". I like the 5.5" better, and I like the 7.5" even more. I have the 3 barrel lengths.
    As for as carry the reverse is my choice, 4" the best, 5.5" then the 7.5".
    I have the factory Houge, and 2 sets of Pachymr grippers if anyone wants them.
    "The older I get, the better I was."

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Try the newer hogue grips for the srh, they are a much better grip than the older hogues and the factory grips.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    To me "shootability" is a combination of balance and sight radius. I haven't shot those guns side by side to see which one would work best for me, but from shooting a variety of DA handguns, I find that 5-6" barrels seem to balance and shoot much better in my hands. Hence, while a 4" barrel would make for a lighter slightly easier to pack gun, I'd go for the shootability of the 5.5".

    I've never understood the argument of picking the lightest easiest to pack gun when one gives up shootability. If you're not planning on shooting, don't carry anything, and if you do need to shoot it, it should be as accurate as possible.
    I absolutely agree. Especially with your 2nd paragraph.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mauserboy View Post
    But they also allow the hand to stay higher up on the grip frame, which is the opposite of what the Hogue does. The Hogue brings the hand farther down from the barrel axis. I feel the recoil less with the wood grips. The SBH .44s I've owned were harder to shoot recoilwise. Also, I like a good looking set of wooden grips. Black plastic grips are, black plastic.
    I thought it was better to have my "hand farther down from the barrel axis", figured it gave me more leverage to handle the recoil. I have 2 revolvers with Hogue (rubber) grips and I like them a lot. The extry length on the bottom seems to make part of the difference.

    I guess, I'm not that concerned with looks. I put a piece of friction tape around the wood grips of my Ruger SA, 357. I'd get Hogue grips for that one, but I just plain don't need them on that gun.

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default Less tendency to rotate or muzzle flip with high grip?

    Interesting discussion - appreciated and mostly listening.

    The high grip, as I understood, helps because you get less muzzle flip -- the pistol recoils closer in line with your forearm (A), instead of torquing (?) or rotating around a lower grasp of the pistol stock(B)?

    A): >>>>>>>recoil energy>>>>>|grip-wrist|>>forearm>>>>, VS

    B): >>>>>>>recoil energy>>>>>\\grip-
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . \\wrist>>forearm>>>>>


    Jerry Miculek seems to use a high grip and gets the sights back on target (real) quick. http://www.wonderhowto.com/how-to/vi...k-276392/view/
    He lowers his grip for the .500Mag at the end.

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    What seems to work for me is the longer grip.

    For example, the original Ruger Blackhawk in 44 Mag. would slip badly in the hand. I knew a guy who owned one, and I fired it.

    He hadda wear gloves to keep from bloodying his hand. The re-designed Ruger Super Blackhawk had a longer grip, and was easier to control.

    Nother example, the Walther PPKS is spose to be more comfortable to fire than the PPK because of the longer grip.

    I dunno if that's the same thing you're talkin about, "Higher Grip", but it's the basis for my opinion.

    The Hogue grips I've used extend a bit beyond the bottom of the grip frame, and that's better for me. I'm just thinkin that there's No Way, I wanna have a "higher grip".

    Thanks for the info.
    Smitty of the North
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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    For proper recoil control the hand should be as close to the centerline of the barrel as possible.

  20. #20
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default 5.5" RH winning by a nose. Grip, sights matter too...

    Maybe the size, and shape/countour of the grip have to be right for the shooter's hand?

    The lower grip might offer advantages too. In those Jerry Miculek video clips, he shoots the S&W 500 grabbing the pistol stock lower. Seems he cycles rounds a bit slower, but as he says, with this grip, the 500 doesn't beat you up so much.

    AK Ray brought up how sights can also add to "shootability" - I noticed Miculek uses HiViz sights. I guess the option to change sights on the 5.5"RH add another advantage over the 4".

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