It Can Be A Good Thing!
My dictionary has one definition of the word “compromise” as the settlement of a dispute by mutual concession. There are always compromises and trade-offs when it comes to firearms. A 10-pound rifle is much easier to shoot than a lightweight, however a 6-pounder is certainly much easier to carry all day. When it comes to sixguns I prefer Perfect Packin’ Pistols for carrying, but long barrels for shooting — a compromise in both situations.
Over the years I’ve found the easiest carrying big bore sixguns to be 43/4″ single actions and 4″ double actions. However, once in the hand, I find it much easier to shoot 71/2″ single actions and 61/2″ double actions. For me the easiest shooting sixguns of all are 10″ single actions and 83/8″ double actions. The longer barrels offer two things, a longer sight radius which normally results in more accurate shooting, and more weight to control recoil.
In between the long and the short of it we have the compromises. Too long to be short and too short to be long, they are not quite as easy to pack as the shorter barrels, and definitely not as easy to shoot as longer barrels, however they do an excellent job of providing a compromise between the two extremes. Especially for the man who has only one sixgun, the compromise barrel length can be the best choice. For me these barrel lengths are those from 5″ to 51/2″ in length; the same barrel lengths I had no use for in my earlier shooting experiences. I should have known better.
By John Taffin
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