September 1998

S&W Model 629 A Better Carry Gun Than Colt, Taurus .44 Mags

Although the Colt Anaconda was a little more accurate and the Taurus Model 44 CP recoiled less, wed pack the lighter Smith & Wesson.

The versatility of the .44 Magnum cartridge is often overlooked. Yes, this is perhaps the finest hunting handgun cartridge ever devised, beaten only by recent hot loads in the .45 Long Colt and in handguns chambered for the .454 Casull, in production guns. The .44 Magnum is a hot cartridge, but that’s only the beginning of the story. There are some lighter loads, not just in the .44 Special, that tame the gun considerably. These are the loads usually fired in the shorter-barreled versions, such as the four-inchers tested here.

The usual barrel length for the .44 Magnum is around the six-inch mark, because most shooters want to be able to get all the performance they can out of such a powe...

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