Gun Review: Chiappa Rhino 60DS AKA White Rhino

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After James R posted up his Chiappa Rhino 200DS review, I felt the need to share my thoughts about the bigger version. The White Rhino. The White Rhino is Chiappa’s 60DS. It is the same gun just with a 6 inch long barrel. The White Rhino is the stainless hard chrome version of the Rhino 60DS. They do make the 60DS in black just like the one James’ reviewed.

I put the Rhino 60DS up against an old Taurus Model 66. Both are stainless finished revolvers with wood grips. They each hold six rounds of .357 MAG.

rhino 1 rhino 2 Rhno 3

Like what James noted in his video, the Rhino shoots from the bottom cylinder. What he did not mention was that the Chiappa Rhino was designed by none other than Emilio Ghisoni, the father of the Mateba. The Unica 6 is the most iconic of the Mateba Revolvers.

 

According to Metabafan.com the Chiappa Rhino was:

Ghisoni’s last design, although much of the design work was done by architect Antonio Cudazzo. Produced by Kimar in Italy, then imported through Chiappa in Italy and Chiappa’s American branch. DS stands for “Definitive Series

As a competitive shooter, I am not interested in short barreled revolvers. I was interested in the long barrel of the 60DS as well as the integrated rails on the 60DS. While the five inch 50DS has a bottom accessory rail for a light or laser, the 60DS has a top rail for optics.

Rhino 4

Trying out the Trijicon MRO. While it looks silly, it works very well. Kinda like KC Eusebio and his Trijicon SRS mounted on his Glock.

Rhino 5

As you could see in the top photo, I also tried the Meopta Meored micro red dot with QD rail mount. After shooting pistols in USPSA with red dots in Open Division, I prefer shooting hand guns with red dots. So shooting the Chiappa Rhino with a red dot was very easy. The direct linear recoil helps to minimize muzzle jump and the red dot does not move far off target.

I shot the Rhino and the Taurus using the same ammunition. American Eagle Lead Round Nose .38 SPL and Remington UMC .38 SPL. As expected the Taurus muzzle flips up more than the Rhino. Making the Rhino easier to shoot and aim for follow up shots.

The Rhino 60DS came cut for moonclips. Something the Taurus is not. For those not familiar with revolver moonclips, the rear face of the cylinder is machined to allow a thin sheet of metal. The thin sheet of metal is called a moonclip. The cartridge is snapped onto the moonclip and acts almost like a magazine. You simply open the cylinder and drop the moonclip in. Compared to tradition speed loaders where the shooter must insert the rounds and twist the loader to release the bullets into the cylinder. The use of moon clips also means the spent brass stays clipped and drops out as one piece. This makes reloading much quicker and easier. The Rhino 60DS came with three moonclips.

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I definitely prefer the Rhino 60DS over the Taurus Model 66. However there are some issues I have with the Rhino. First of all the wood grip does not feel comfortable. The front strap has 90 degree corners that do not feel good when holding and shooting the Rhino. The accessory rail should be full length or moved rearwards. While it is nice to have the bottom rail positioned near the muzzle so that flashlights mounted there will not cast barrel shadow, it makes it harder to activate the weapon light as it is out of reach for my thumbs without breaking my grip. Another issue is the top rail. I like that it has one, but I rather have the rail be modular. Cut the rail out and have different thickness spacers to mount the rail lower or higher. That way you could counter sink small red dots like the Meopta Meored and co-witness the irons. Right now the optic sits higher than the iron sights. The Rhino 60DS does come with fiber optic front and rear sights and are better than the red plastic ramp on the Taurus. As my fried Greg, a compeitive revolver shooter, noted, Chiappa needs to make an 8 rd rhino. If they did he would trade one of his competition revolvers. An 8 rd rhino would be fantastic in the world of competitive revolver.  Another note is that the Chiappa Rhino comes in 9mm. Now on their website they list a Rhino 20D and 400DS combo.  They come with two cylinders, one in .357mag and one in 9mm. I would have liked a spare cylinder to shoot the 60DS in 9×19 with moon clips. I think the recoil would be even softer and make for a very fun and fast revolver.



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 nicholas.c@staff.thefirearmblog.com


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  • Pete M

    Awesome. I love this wheel gun looks.

  • Anonymoose

    If they can do one in .40 with moon-clips, why no 10mm? I would love a 10mm Rhino, and I could still shoot .40 with the same clips.

    • Giolli Joker

      I believe the answer is “pressures”.
      S&W builds its 10Auto revolver on an N frame, designed for 6 .44 Mag rounds.
      This frame is designed to hold a cylinder with 6 rounds of .357, I would suppose that the .40 version has fairly thin chamber walls, not suitable for 10Auto pressures.

      • Nicholas C

        But Chiappa makes some rhinos in .44mag. I recall shooting a short barreled version at my first Media Day at the Range at Shot Show and it was unpleasant.

        • Giolli Joker

          To my (and Google’s) knowledge there is no Rhino .44.
          Either you had chance to shoot a prototype nobody reported about, or you shot the much lighter polymeric .38 model and you just remember the stouter recoil.
          Either way some more info would be cool.😉

          • Nicholas C

            Hmm I will see if I can find any information. I Could have SWORN it was a 44 mag.

      • Commenter

        That could be the reason.

        When I looked into it a few years ago, I’m pretty sure .357 SAMMI pressure I found listed on Wikipedia was higher-than-or-equal to 10mm Auto, but now I see .40 S&W is equal to .357 (both 35k psi) and 10mm is listed as 37,500 psi. Not much of a difference, but maybe just enough to create an issue for the 7000 series aluminum Chiappa uses for the Rhino’s frame (don’t know what the cylinders are made of).

        Seems like a job for Scandium-man! Or maybe a Titanium cylinder?

  • Sasquatch

    Every time I see this gun I have “some people call me the space cowboy” run through my head.

    • hikerguy

      It looks like a futuristic revolver for si fi westerns in space. Maybe, if they ever bring Firefly back, it could be Mal’s new revolver, lol.

      • Yuckydog

        Check out the Total Recall remake.

        • hikerguy

          I will do that.

  • Giolli Joker

    Cool “gun p0rn” photos!

    Given the designed use of this gun, what is the relevance of the “tactically oriented” comments on rail position? Are lights and co-witnessing relevant in some competitive environments?

    The Rhino was born as a compact defensive gun (the prototypes, one of which I shot, were all 2″ barreled) and it has grown once manufactured by Chiappa.
    To go up to 8 shots a larger frame would be needed and the flat sides of the cylinder would be lost… I would love to see a .44 Rhino (Triceratops?) and an 8 .357 shots version of it as well, though.

    • Nicholas C

      The comments about the rains is just something I would like for competition and possible self defense. I am a huge fan of cowitnessed red dots. Especially on a handgun. It helps finding the dot much faster for me.

    • The American Crusader

      I too have been waiting to see if Chiappa would release a .44 Magnum version. Given the recoil reducing nature of the design, I think it’s a logical step. Also a bit disappointed there isn’t an aftermarket for alternative grips.

  • DH

    A Gold 60DS is on my bucket list of guns, just wish they were easier to find.

  • Don Ward

    They need to come out with a Yankee Marshal “Special” edition…

  • A Fascist Corgi

    The Chiappa Rhino is the only revolver that’s worth buying in my opinion. It has less muzzle flip than any other pistol that I’ve shot (in a major caliber). I also prefer the 6-inch barrels because if you ever had to use it for self-defense the longer barrel will help to minimize hearing damage. And the extra weight will help to reduce recoil even more. They also have rails for lights, which is pretty rare for revolvers.

    I’m kinda conflicted about what caliber to go with, though, since .357 Magnum is one of the loudest handgun calibers. Yeah, you could also shoot the much quieter .38 Special out of the same revolver, but .38 Special is kind of weak, in my opinion, even the +P rounds. That’s why I’d be tempted to recommend a Chiappa Rhino with a 6-inch barrel and chambered in 9x19mm to anyone that was looking for a revolver to use for home defense.

    • iksnilol

      If in 9×19 wouldn’t it just be easier to use a 9mm semi-auto?

      • Swarf

        Dude. Look at it.

        • El Duderino

          I looked at it. Now what?

          • Swarf

            Did it look back at you?

      • A Fascist Corgi

        Yes, but some people don’t like semi-auto pistols. It might seem strange to we gun nuts, but a lot of people are intimidated by the complexity of semi-auto guns. And some people are paranoid about their semi-auto pistols jamming. So, for people like that, I’ll always recommend the Chiappa Rhino for the reasons that I already mentioned.

        • iksnilol

          Still, if it jams after 6 shots then it is just the same as the revolver, if it jams after 12 shots at least you got off twice as many shots as you would have with the revolver.

          • Giolli Joker

            If it jams at the first attempt to shoot, then it is just the same as a stone. 🙂

          • iksnilol

            I dunno, clearing a jam on a pistol is easier/quicker than reloading a revolver.

    • Paladin

      I doubt a longer barrel would make much difference to the sound level of a revolver on account of the cylinder gap.

    • Joe Gamer

      38 Special +p out of a six inch barrel is pretty effective IMO, I keep my rhino loaded with Double Tap’s 110gr Barnes TACXP which reach about 1300+ fps in a 6″ barrel. That’s no slouch, and I still have the deafening .357 magnums if I have to reload. The Chiappa also come chambered for .40SW which is a nice safe middle ground.

  • Harry’s Holsters

    I’ve never understood the execution of a WML on a revolver. Every time I’ve seen it done you really need a DG type switch to use it properly due to the distance of the light and the potential to hurt your hand while it’s in front of the cylinder gap. A pistol with a WML offers multiple advantages in ergos alone.

    • Nicholas C

      You are right. But I dont see why a revolver can’t have a WML. Is it as efficient as a semi auto pistol? No. But not everything has to be the same.

      • Harry’s Holsters

        This is america! But I wish someone would modify a Pressure switch or DG switch to make the setup somewhat realistic!

        • Giolli Joker

          There are remote switches to be placed on rifle handguards for several models of WML, adapting one to the Rhino should not be that hard.
          However, the 4″ model places the light much closer to the hand, with proper choice of WML you should get something that can be switched with the index finger.

          • Harry’s Holsters

            While I see your point I think you’re taking to big of a risk using the index finger to activate the light. I would like to see someone modify a remote switch to work though.

            I know the practicality is dubious but a suppressed rhino with a light and DB switch would be awesome!

  • Iggy

    With that much metal in the frame, the gun also passes the often overlooked “Can you beat someone to death with this then keep shooting” test.

    • Swarf

      Yeah. How does it stack up weight-wise?

      That looks like a lot of extra steel.

      • Giolli Joker

        The frame and the barrel shroud are made of aluminum alloy, it’s not as heavy as it looks.
        Only the cylinder, the recoil shield and the guts are steel.

        • Swarf

          Ahh, thanks.

          I have to admit, as much as I dislike Chiappa, it’s a pretty badass looking revolver.

  • Dave

    I can’t stand seeing the really obvious seam where the different length barrel is threaded onto the frame.

    • Nicholas C

      Yeah but it is how they keep production costs down. It would be cool if we could buy different barrels to change the length like the Unica 6

    • AD

      I know, right? It shouldn’t be a big deal, but to me it really is.

  • Anomanom

    For point of fact, the grips on the rhino are interchangeable, with small medium and large sizes in the wood grips. The very (IMO) comfortable rubber grip seen on the 20/200 models is available too (although it’s sold out right now). Maybe rubber grip or a different size would suit you better?

    • Nicholas C

      Yeah I was thinking that as well.

  • Sasquatch

    Every time I see this gun I have “some people call me the space cowboy” run through my head.

  • RicoSuave

    Seems like it should be in the upcoming Blade Runner sequel.

    • Nicholas C

      It was in the Total Recall remake along with the Kriss Vector.

      • RicoSuave

        Definitely a gun made for sci-fi films, like the P90. Am curious to see what the weapons of the Blade Runner sequel look like.

    • gunsandrockets

      I think it made an appearance in The Expanse, on SyFy.

  • Julio

    This was interesting, and I like the Rhino… but the article would have been better still if the author had demonstrated an ability to count to six. Honestly, I must have led a sheltered life, but I have never seen/heard so many dead-man’s clicks in one place!

    • Nicholas C

      LOL I am spoiled by open division semi auto race guns with 29 rounds. Count and shoot? Who am I Jerry Miculek? haha

      • Julio

        Fine. But. Six!
        It goes like this: one-two, three-four, five-six. Stop. Reload.
        (Do like my cousins in the country and just count your fingers!)

  • gunsandrockets

    Moon clip .357 magnum? That’s different. Didn’t know that about the Rhino.

    • Nicholas C

      Yeah, its cool!