No Regrets

Wheelgun Diaries

They say every gun has a story. A reader submission series from American Handgunner, Wheelgun Diaries seeks to tell some of those stories through the words of revolver owners.

The following stories were shared by email with permission to publish.

No Regrets

I’ve owned this Smith & Wesson Model 624 for many years. I bought it used in its original configuration with a 6.5″ barrel and the square butt target stocks. I’d always wanted a large bore S&W DA revolver but didn’t particularly want a .44 Magnum. (I have other revolvers in .357 Magnum for when I want lots of muzzle flash and loud noise.)

Unfortunately, I soon found the 624 unusable because of its size and barrel length and took it to Bill Davis Gunsmithing for some modifications. Closed some 25 years now, BDG was once a Smith & Wesson factory service center in northern California that built custom and competition revolvers. I had them install a 3″ barrel, remove the single-action sear and bob the hammer. The result was a more compact DAO N-frame revolver that could be easily carried for personal or home defense with great accuracy and little recoil.

I initially had some misgivings about altering the gun, as the 624 was an elegant and rare revolver in its original configuration, but it was my gun, after all, and I had no intention of selling it or owning it for investment or historical preservation. I wanted to make it more useable and more relevant to my situation — and for that, I have no regrets.

Bob Friedman

Stolen Security Six

In September 1980, my father purchased a new 4” .357 Magnum Ruger Security Six, as it was cheaper than a Smith & Wesson Model 19, at that time. I had just started reloading and kept him well-supplied with ammo that kept us shooting for many enjoyable Sunday afternoons.

Then, in September 1981, some crooks broke into his house and stole his guns. One was recovered within 6 months, but it seemed his beloved Security Six was lost forever. Fast-forward 35 years, I got a call from the local sheriff’s office looking for a dependent for my father who had passed away in 2008. After the verification process was complete, the investigator told me my father’s Ruger had been recovered by a police department over 800 miles away and the revolver would be returned to me. Three weeks later, I was once again holding my father’s Ruger Security Six.

I was not prepared for the wave of emotions that came over me recalling the fun we had shooting it. I own several revolvers, but this Ruger will always be my most cherished. One day it will be passed on to my son and then my grandson.

James Holley

Once A Cowboy...

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve been enamored of cowboy guns. I grew up playing with cap pistols, but my first real gun was a High Standard Double Nine. Later in life, I was able to acquire a .45 Colt Single Action Army. It was a 2nd Gen (1970) 4.75” plain-Jane, blued and case-hardened. I longed to hunt deer with it, but Wisconsin only allowed magnums, so I bought a .44 Mag Ruger Vaquero. Unfortunately, it was wildly inaccurate.

Luckily, before the next deer season, the state changed the law and my Colt was now legal. Long story short, it took three deer in two seasons, all shot from the same tree stand. The first was antlerless deer in a special season before the regular deer season.

I’ve since lucked into another Colt SAA — this one is a 3rd Gen (1995), engraved with scrimshawed ivory grips and a special serial number. I no longer hunt deer, but I still love shooting my cowboy guns.

John Schroeder

Submit Your Wheelgun Diaries

Do you have a wheelgun story to tell? Send us a photo and your story by email and you could see it published here and featured in our weekly Wheelgun Wednesday newsletter.

Send to: [email protected]