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S&W model 69 #15258012 09/25/20
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Gooch_McGrundle Offline OP
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Ive been contemplating buying my first full size revolver. I’d mainly carry it while hunting. I had contemplated just carrying one of my semi-autos, but I mainly want an excuse to buy a gun. I want an S&W, so that’s all At first, I was originally looking at Model 66s and Model 686s. I didn’t want a huge gun. Then I saw the 69, which is a 44 in an L frame. Anyone have one? Looks like a great blend of power while being mid-size.

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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258176 09/26/20
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I recently bought one, but have not yet shot it. I intend to shoot mainly 44Spl.

It's the same size as my 4.2" 686. Different barrel/shroud contour.

Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258181 09/26/20
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I really like mine. It is the 4.5" barrel one. It is well balanced and has a good feel to it. I handload for it using 240 gr. either coated cast lead SWC or 240 gr. JSP bullets. It can handle .44 Russian, .44 Special, or .44 Magnum cartridges. For hunting, you can kill darn near anything with a .44 Magnum. I cannot say from experience, but it is my understanding that you can blow through both shoulders of an elk with one. I use a hot load .44 Special "+P" for anti-personnel carry use - 240 gr. lead SWC over 7.7 gr. Universal. That gives me 961 FPS actual. In the words of the great late "Skeeter" Skelton : "one shot and hostilities will cease". My magnum load is either a lead 240 gr. SWC over 10.2 gr. Universal that gives me 1132 FPS actual or 240 gr. JSP over 10 gr. Titegroup for 1267 FPS actual. Recoil with the Russian loads is very mild and with my "+P" Special loads it is not bad at all. Magnum loads recoil is quite manageable. Tip: put some LockTite on the rear sight mounting screw (not the adjustment screw).


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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258221 09/26/20
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I haven't considered a new Smith & Wesson since they added the key lock, but that little short 69 is sorely tempting me.


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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258223 09/26/20
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Originally Posted by Gooch_McGrundle
Ive been contemplating buying my first full size revolver. I’d mainly carry it while hunting. I had contemplated just carrying one of my semi-autos, but I mainly want an excuse to buy a gun. I want an S&W, so that’s all At first, I was originally looking at Model 66s and Model 686s. I didn’t want a huge gun. Then I saw the 69, which is a 44 in an L frame. Anyone have one? Looks like a great blend of power while being mid-size.
They're a pretty nice gun. I've owned two of them. I only sold the last one because I felt it was redundant in that I have a Mountain Gun and a Ruger Flattop Blackhawk in the same caliber...both relatively light-duty 44 Mag's.

It doesn't recoil that badly. IIRC, I shot it with mainly Cowboy Loads but also some standard 240 grain loadings and it didn't recoil as much as you'd have though-certainly nothing like the descriptions of the 329, which I've never shot. I like the other two better but if I needed that last bit of concealment in a 44 Mag, it's the gun I'd choose.

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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258241 09/26/20
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What is a Smith and Wesson M69? Why would you want one? I don't understand.


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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258415 09/26/20
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The_Real_Hawkeye Offline
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Originally Posted by Gooch_McGrundle
Ive been contemplating buying my first full size revolver. I’d mainly carry it while hunting. I had contemplated just carrying one of my semi-autos, but I mainly want an excuse to buy a gun. I want an S&W, so that’s all At first, I was originally looking at Model 66s and Model 686s. I didn’t want a huge gun. Then I saw the 69, which is a 44 in an L frame. Anyone have one? Looks like a great blend of power while being mid-size.

They have a Combat Magnum configuration of the 69 that I've been tempted to buy. It would make a great .44 Special.



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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258430 09/26/20
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Of course, you will want to have a gunsmith deactivate the key lock function.


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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258544 09/26/20
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Gooch_McGrundle Offline OP
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Thanks for all the info! I’m thinking about ordering one today.

Re: S&W model 69 [Re: The_Real_Hawkeye] #15258686 09/26/20
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Originally Posted by The_Real_Hawkeye
Of course, you will want to have a gunsmith deactivate the key lock function.



All 69s are “combat magnums “

And disabling the key lock and tossing a cleaner looking plug in its place are far from a gunsmith job .

I foolishly let my 69 go to get something else . I truly preferred the size over a N frame .


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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: jmd025] #15258713 09/26/20
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Originally Posted by jmd025
Originally Posted by The_Real_Hawkeye
Of course, you will want to have a gunsmith deactivate the key lock function.



All 69s are “combat magnums “

Yeah, I got a PM to that effect. Did not know that.


"History is a set of lies that people have agreed upon."

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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: jmd025] #15258820 09/26/20
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Gooch_McGrundle Offline OP
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Originally Posted by jmd025
Originally Posted by The_Real_Hawkeye
Of course, you will want to have a gunsmith deactivate the key lock function.



All 69s are “combat magnums “

And disabling the key lock and tossing a cleaner looking plug in its place are far from a gunsmith job .

I foolishly let my 69 go to get something else . I truly preferred the size over a N frame .


Is the key lock thing any idiot can do?

Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258830 09/26/20
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alwaysoutdoors Offline
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For $800, Id rather have a prelock 4" N frame in 44 mag such as a 629. 6 rounds capacity too


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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258836 09/26/20
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Gooch_McGrundle Offline OP
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Does the lock create a reliability/performance problem? Or is more a matter of principle on how it got there?

Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258864 09/26/20
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It's seriously tempting to me too, even with the lock, which I would get rid of. I'd probably just shoot specials in it as well, and it's hard to justify with a 3" GP100, and a Flat Top Ruger, and a C/A Bull Dog along with 2 different Taurus 431's all in 44 Special. Matter of fact hard to justify having 5 44 Specials, plus my 44 mags, with the arthritis I have in my shooting hand.


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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15258871 09/26/20
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frank500 Offline
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The model 69 is a wonderful carry revolver. Replace the issue grips with Hogue X frame grips. Attack them with a belt sander to make them smaller and without finger grooves.
The idiot lock is easily removed, lots of YouTube university videos showing you how.
I have carried mine many miles in northwest Wy in a chest holster with a couple speed strips. Normal load is 260 Keith at 1190. Lots of varmint shooting with it and rocks way out there. It is my favorite revolver to carry and shoot.
Replaced the front sight with a green fiber optic from Dawson. Makes a huge difference for me seeing it against varying backgrounds.

Re: S&W model 69 [Re: frank500] #15258956 09/26/20
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Originally Posted by frank500
The model 69 is a wonderful carry revolver. Replace the issue grips with Hogue X frame grips. Attack them with a belt sander to make them smaller and without finger grooves.
The idiot lock is easily removed, lots of YouTube university videos showing you how.
I have carried mine many miles in northwest Wy in a chest holster with a couple speed strips. Normal load is 260 Keith at 1190. Lots of varmint shooting with it and rocks way out there. It is my favorite revolver to carry and shoot.
Replaced the front sight with a green fiber optic from Dawson. Makes a huge difference for me seeing it against varying backgrounds.


Pretty much this, in spades. I kept the factory grips but hogged out the bottom to fit one of those looped hogue screws they make for the .460/.500s so I could attach a retractable lanyard. I removed the dumb lock and added the narrowest Dawson fiber optic front sight. It’s incredibly better than the factory front. I carry this gun constantly due to its perfect balance of power and size. My load of choice is 300s at 1150, hardcast for bear defense and XTPs when deer are in the offering. I’m planning to switch to the 300 gr A Frames for my expanding bullet needs though.

Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15259159 09/26/20
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Be careful, a 69 might have you ignoring any 4" N frame you might have.

Biggest or smallest might have their pluses, but the 69 seems juuuusst right. 2-3 ozs. lighter than a Mt. Gun but it seems the recoil is less, muzzle flip is less for sure. A different weigh distribution.

Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15259196 09/26/20
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I’ve had one for a couple of years and really like it. It fits my hand better than an N-frame and the bore axis seems a bit lower so it feels like it has less recoil than an N-frame to me. I usually shoot low end magnum loads or high end 44 Special loads.

Last edited by navlav8r; 09/26/20.

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Re: S&W model 69 [Re: Gooch_McGrundle] #15259257 09/26/20
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I like S&W's. I could care less if there's a lock on it or not. I probably shoot the L and J frames the most. I had a I-frame in 32 long, but I'm afraid it's been lifted - that was my wife's favorite pistol. I have my 629 in my pickup and I'm hoping to use the 629 on whitetail this year. I think a 69 would be a perfect revolver for hunting and hiking.


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