Revolver Showdown

Jerry Miculek compares a S&W L-Frame against a Colt Python and a Ruger Speed Six. He admits it to us that he is a little biased since he has been shooting for S&W for the past 25 years. After the test firing he does a table top talk and breaks down the features of each one. The table top discussion does seem a bit biased and heavy towards the S&W line of revolvers but that is to be expected.

Nicholas C

Co-Founder of KRISSTALK forums, an owner’s support group and all things KRISS Vector related. Nick found his passion through competitive shooting while living in NY. He participates in USPSA and 3Gun. He loves all things that shoots and flashlights. Really really bright flashlights.

Any questions please email him at


  • strongarm

    Design from Ruger and workmanship from SW would be fine.

    • Anonymoose

      Just bring back the Python (and Anaconda).

      • iksnilol

        No buns means no anaconda, hun.

        Bad joke aside; why did they stop making the Python? Not enough demand or was it too expensive to keep manufacturing?

        • Anonymoose

          Expense vs demand, I think. Everyone was focusing on 9mm semi-autos after the XM9 trials and the Glock craze, so revolvers and Colt handguns in general became a niche market.

        • Expense. The design needed a good deal of hand work as well.

          • Anonymoose

            Now that the panic-buying is on hiatus, we’re in the setting for a boom in custom shop models. I bet Colt could bring out a New Anaconda that could compete with the Super Redhawk in terms of loads it can handle, with a fit and finish better than the 629/625, and make a fortune off of it, and everybody loves a Python.

      • I wish but I probably couldn’t afford one.

  • claymore

    I think he missed something. We were issued model 66 .357 K frames and had no problems with the forcing cone failing BUT had a big problem with “flame cutting” the top strap from gasses escaping between the forcing cone and the cylinder. After a steady diet of .357 ammo, which we had to use if we wanted to carry them, it looked like someone had taken a torch to them and we had a few failures at that point.

    We sent them to S&W and they knew of the problem and they told our armorers that is why they went to the “L” frame as it had a thicker top strap.

    The “L” frame was issued to a class or two but the same thing started happening again and that is one of the reasons why we were the first State Police dept to go to the Beretta 92 SB.

    I still have my issued CSP marked stainless 66 that was blued by S&W to meet our request because when we got the new Berettas we could purchase our old “K” frame 66’s. And yes you can see the flame cutting LOL.

    • Yea the 66 and 19s were meant to practice with 38 and shoot very little 357. The “L” frame sure cured that problem.

      • claymore

        LOL it helped but there was still flame cutting BUT it had to cut more of the top strap to get dangerous.

  • Nicks87

    Jerry, I love to watch you shoot but you are a Smith and Wesson ho fo sho!

  • Zebra Dun

    I’ve owned and shot Rugers, S&W and Colts.
    I have a Colt Lawman MK III and two S&W’s I favor the Smith’s over either the Colt or the Ruger.
    That’s not saying the Colt and Ruger are not fine revolvers.
    I just like the feel and handling of the Smith.

  • gunsandrockets

    The fate of a handgun model frequently has little to do with the merit of that model.

    Python died off because of a labor dispute not because the Python was inferior.

    A S&W already weakened by competition from Glock, almost killed itself in 2000 by fatally mixing business with politics.

    Arguably the best DA revolver ever, the Dan Wesson, died off because the parent company died.

    And doesn’t it seem like the latest S&W revolvers described by Jerry are beginning to incorporate features of the old Dan Wesson revolvers?

  • rebart

    I used to have to renew my carry permit every year when I was an armed guard on the CA race tracks. Without fail I would be shooting to someone carrying an S&W of some kind. Without letting the instructor see us I would let them switch to my Python and they always improved their score. I also have a beautiful S&W with bluing that rivals the Colt. I love that gun, but I had it ported and now it leads up the front sight and spits powder and whatever back in my face. Don’t ever port a beautiful Python or S&W. It may be just from the kind of porting I got, but I can’t remember the name. If I recall the name I will post it as I don’t want to see this happen to anyone else. Oh, yeah, I forgot, the S&W model 28 (I think, or is it 29, well anyway it is the higher level one now in my safe, has the 3 1/2 inch bbl. No one ever believed me that S&W made a 3 1/2 inch bbl. I guess there were very few of them. IMHO, the Ruger is a LOT tougher gun than either the Colt or the S&W.

  • Chained

    Give me a Python / Anaconda anyday. I can kick myself for not buying one when I had a chance.