The Snubnose Revolver & Civilian Self-Defense [Archive] - Glock Talk


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04-04-2012, 16:20
Dear Mas,

Several self-defense Instructors have claimed that the majority of armed Civilian Self-Defense situations occurr at and are resolved in "3's"(within 3 feet or less,with 3 shots or less fired, in 3 second or less).You've written often about the snub-nose revolvers weapon retention strengths, it's ability to fire from within a pocket & it's capabilities to function at muzzle contact distances or if entangled in clothing.I own hi-cap semi-auto's, but have always been a huge fan of the snub and think many underestimate it or simply don't understand it's advantages in self-defense tending to focus on it's weaknesses as a range or target gun or the ability of most not being able to make accurate hits at longer than room distances.I quote your work often when arguing it's positive attributes.
In a previous post here you mentioned that the majority of gunfights you've studied involved some distance.
I would guess that Muggings, unarmed assaults, Rape, carjackings & Home invasions would be the most likely self-defense scenarios the average Civilian would face and I assume many are resolved in favor of the defendee without any shots at all being fired when the good guy simply brings a weapon into the equation or the defender simply shoots the intruder. Actual firefights and exchange of gunfire with an armed assailant would seem extremely rare for the Civilian.

Were your referring to Police gunfights or Civilian gunfights when you mentioned there being some distance involved in the gunfights you've studied?

Thank you very much,

Mas Ayoob
04-04-2012, 18:19
There can be distance involved in police OR armed citizen scenarios. A cop friend dropped an armed robber at 23 yards with his S&W hammerless .38 Airweight, and one private citizen client killed an armed robber pointing a gun at him from 50 feet away.

There's no empirical data base that tabulates distances on these things, and if there was, none of us could reasonably expect a "statistically average" attack. That's why whether we carry a snubby or a target pistol, it's a good idea to work on being capable at distances from muzzle contact to extended range.

A good snubby will surprise most folks with its shooting ability, if they've spent enough time with it and know its trajectory and point of aim/point of impact coordinates.


04-07-2012, 09:39

You often recommended a Revolver over a semi-auto for those who carry the autoloader in condition 3(empty chamber with full magazine) for CCW.

But how about for home defense? I know a lot of people who keep their home defense guns in condition 3, so would you recommend a Revolver loaded and ready to go over a semi-auto kept in condition three for home defense?

Thank you again for your time,

Mas Ayoob
04-07-2012, 16:21
Dan, it depends on WHY the given individual keeps the home defense gun Condition Three (empty chamber, loaded magazine).

There can be any number of reasons, but it usually comes down to the person being uncomfortable with an "automatic pistol" with short trigger stroke, and/or fear of getting confused as to whether there's a round in the chamber or not. In that situation, the simple double action revolver does seem to be a better choice. I'd make it a double action ONLY revolver, because someone insecure about their ability to manipulate a semiautomatic pistol is going to be in WAY over their head trying to lower the hammer on a cocked, loaded revolver.)

Hoping this has been responsive to your question,