In 1980 Smith & Wesson introduced a stainless version of the L frame model 586 called the model 686. The Smith & Wesson 686 Plus is a 7 shot variation that shoots both .357 Magnum and .38 special ammunition. It is available in barrel lengths of 2 1/2″, 3″, 4″, 5″, 6″, and 8 3/4″. My 686 has the 4 inch barrel. I tried the 6 inch barrel but found it to be front heavy for my taste.
This S&W 357 Magnum weighs in at 44 Oz., a very hefty weight for someone who mainly shoots plastic, light weight semi automatic pistols. The weight helps absorb some of the magnum load recoil and makes it very comfortable to shoot. Shooting .38 Special is pretty much a non event with this gun. The recoil reminds me of a 9mm. But try shooting the .357 Magnum round, That’s 9mm +P on steroids. I shot .357 magnum for the first time with my new Smith Wesson 686P and it is definitely a powerful load with a lot of kick. It is a fun gun to shoot. I quickly ran through the 100 rounds I had with me and found myself wanting to shoot more.
The double action is smooth and easy to stage. Shooting single action takes some practice and requires only the slightest glass smooth touch to send the round on its way.
Accuracy of the SW 686 is just superb. The rear adjustable sight allows shots to be grouped right in the bull’s eye. Here are two targets that I shot at 15 yards. One is shooting .38 Special at 15 Yards, the other is .357 Magnum at 15 yards.
My Smith Wesson 686 Plus price was $698.00 from Buds Gun Shop online. Buds always ships free to your FFL. I think this is a great price for thus gun considering the MSRP is $849.00. I checked it out at Scheels, my regular gun shop, but they only had the six shot model priced at $749.00.
Notice the rough textured grip surface on the cylinder release and the hammer.
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