Fresh off of the inaugural Rangemaster Master Instructor class and accompanying social media hullabaloo, I wrote Six For Maybe, a discussion on revolver reliability.
Today, I discussed the issue with my boss who will soon have been a lawman for a mere 42 years. He was the top gun in his academy class shooting a Smith & Wesson Model 66, and he worked for an agency that issued Navy surplussed Smith & Wesson Model 10s. He has some time behind a wheelgun.
He told me that he didn’t remember revolvers failing at the rate in which I have seen them fail in various classes. He then went on the tell me about the old 10th Congressional District Pistol Matches (a pistol match open to all of the agencies within the 10th Congressional District of Georgia) and other training events, and he said, “I just don’t remember any real failures that weren’t related to ammo”.
So then I asked, “Did you carry a brush with you to the line?”
What followed was a detailed description of how they all carried brushes and cleaning cloths so that during any shooting event they could clean out under the extractor star or wipe down the breach face and other such sundry tasks.
So then I asked, “How often did you do all of that?”
He described that at least every 100 rounds or so he would go through the above described procedure?
So then I asked, “In the academy, was somebody always yelling at y’all to do all of that?”
The answer was an affirmative, but then he said, “I guess at a certain point we just all knew that we had to do all of that stuff.”
So then I asked, “Would you foresee problems if somebody was told by a buddy or gun shop guy that to use a revolver because it was “six for sure” and who didn’t understand the maintenance needs of a wheelgun?
The answer was in the affirmative.
Going back the original piece and the position that Darryl Bolke expressed, if you are going to seriously run a revolver, you have to be committed to maintaining it constantly while shooting it.
The only way to develop skill is to train, and in order to train, you are going to have to maintain.
That is a vital point that must be driven home to those who are going to use a revolver.