Long range shooting with a snubby

Steve Doran proves that any gun can be accurate if you take the time to practice with it. He takes his Smith & Wesson Model 60 snub nosed revolver (1 5/8 inch barrel) and, firing 158 grain .38 Special factory ammunition and manages great accuracy at 100 yards!

Steve has a write up about the shoot over at his website.

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • Vak


    The bullet must have piss poor penetration at that distance, though.

  • Simon_The_Brit

    Enough penetration to make your eyes water though 😉

  • Google: ILRPSA “pocket pistol”

    They shoot long range bullseye matches with handguns. One category is for “pocket pistols”. You have 30 seconds to fire five rounds at a target 100 meters downrange. This is done twice.

    Not surprisingly, some competitors started to build raceguns for all of the events, including the “pocket pistol” match. In one of David Miller’s books you can see a Colt New Service that received a short but huge match barrel, a hooded front sight with large sun shade, an extended rear sight, and orthopedic stocks.

    At Bisley, they had long range events for the “service pistol” (L9A1) and “.45 auto”. These had targets at 100 and 200 meters.

    Then there was an “all-comers” event that had targets at 100, 200, and 300 meters. Also in the Miller book, there is a converted Ruger Blackhawk with all of the modifications of the New Service mentioned earlier except for a much longer barrel. The owner had reportedly developed an individual load for each of the three ranges so he wouldn’t have to change his sight settings. In one of Patrick Sweeney’s books, you can even find a photo of a Lahti pistol which was probably modified for the same competition.

    • Daniel, THATS AWESOME. I would love to watch a match like that.

  • It probably wasn’t much fun to watch as they used paper targets.

    In contrast at International Handgun Metallic Silhouette Association (IHMSA) matches, you knock over metal animal silhouettes at 50, 100, 150, and 200 meters in the standard competitions. If it doesn’t fall over, it doesn’t score. I have heard of people showing up at IHMSA matches with service pistols. It was more of a stunt at the time.

  • Fred Orman

    Impressive shooting with a snubby at 100 yards. During my defensive pistol training I was the only student to use an S&W 649 (5 rounds, 2 1/8″ barrel) for the courses on silhouet targets at from 15 feet to 25 yards rapid fire. I had no misses. All other students used a variety of semi-autos – mostly having adjustable sights and longer barrels. I was the only student to have no: failures to extract, stove-pipes or lost shots due to primer failures (just squeeze again on a new chamber).

  • Dave Watters

    Before the ban on pistols in GB I used to shoot Allcomers “A” and pocket pistol, both were modified guns and both held ILRPSA records, the pocket was a S&W mod.27 with a 3.5 barrel the Allcomers was a Ruger Blackhawk with a 9 inch Walther barrel an extended top rail with a Williams foolproof sight,this was capable of 50 ex 50 at every distance (100,200 and 300 yards). Would love to be able to shoot these comps again, but alas the powers that be won’t allow it

  • Briguy

    I didnt even know that .38’s were accurate that far out! I wonder what kind of ammo this guy was using.

    • Dave Watters

      I used Hodgdens H110, Sierra 180 match and Remington 5.1/2 primers
      12.8 gns for 100, 15.3gns for 100&200
      The bullet was seated in the cannelure and taper crimped for 100
      It was seated just behind the cannelure and taper crimped for 200&300
      All powder was trickled into the case
      Try it out it’s not an over pressure round and the fired expansion on the bottom of the case was 0.003″ Winchester Western cases

  • Dave Watters

    I shot metal silhouette over in France and were those guys good, I tried it with a Dan Wesson maximum and a 7mm BR Remington, both had the knock down potential but I must admit I was pretty crap against those Frenchies, and I was a ILRPSA champion at that time
    That’s life eh?