Six To Six Plus One

Still, six rounds of .357 Magnum tucked inside a rust-resistant, stainless steel package is nothing to sneeze at. Revolvers are inherently more reliable than semi-automatics, and a comfortable-to-carry semi-auto duty gun, as powerful as the .357 Magnum and as easy to shoot as the 686, is yet to be invented. Recently, Smith & Wesson increased the capacity of the 686 by 15 percent, making it a 7-shooter. A 686 holding seven shots is called a “686 Plus.”

Yes, 15 percent more ammo, even if it is just one shot, is a big deal. I’m not saying it would have curbed the transition to the high-capacity autoloader, or kept the 686 in police holsters any longer. But in the right circumstance, one extra shot could make the difference in a visit to the morgue; either for your own autopsy or to see that of the bad guy who thought you were done after six.

Here in the new millennium, the revolver seems as unpopular as traditional marriage. But it doesn’t mean a wheelgun can’t still serve as a personal defense sidearm. Smith & Wesson realizes this, which is why they still offer a full selection of revolvers for those who want one. Not only do they have a wide selection of standard production models to consider, the Smith & Wesson Performance Center turns out several precision-tuned revolvers any 1980’s cop would have traded all his donuts for.