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Anyboy seen this in the flesh, er, steel?.357 Mag revolver from the Performance Center based on the M 327.

Interesting features:

- 8 shooter
- Picatinny rail under the barrel-- first revolver I've heard of sporting a rail, but its brother M327 TRR8 also has rails
- 5 inch barrel
- Moon clips
- Chamfered
- Removeable Picatinny rail on top for optics
- Looks like Hogue grips in the picture, doesn't say in the text but they look just like the ones I have on my Model 66.
- Polygonal rifling
- Scandium frame
- Not cheap!

Not exactly the most concealable gun, but if you like your home defense handgun to be a revolver, but you want a light mounted on it too...here you go.

I tried to set up a direct link to the S&W website page that has the gun, but the url is too long or something for the url command to work here. As I write this, it is featured on the home page of the S&W site (http://www.smith-wesson.com/). If it goes away from the home page, you can find it under "Select a Model" search feature on the left side of the home page if you choose M&P R8.

elb
 
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Haven't seen one "in the flesh" (and don't expect to, as expensive and specialized an item as it is) but noticed the item in one or two gun magazines recently. I believe Smith is trying to stir up law enforcement interest for it as some sort of "tactical" or "special weapons" item, what with the Picatinny Rail underneath the barrel and on top of the frame for lights, optics and similar doo-dadss that are all the rage on handguns nowdays. Its $1,300+ MSRP price is certainly aimed at that market. You don't have to spend nearly that much money for a home defense revolver, what with aftermarket fixtures that affix a light to revolvers available nowdays.
 

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Howdy Mr. ELB,

Thanks for the heads up and the link. I did find it interesting. It almost makes me think they have geared it to comp shooters who want a race revolver for certain matches. Although since I am not nor have I ever been a comp shooter, I may well be wrong in that thought.

I am just thinking back to some 6" 686s I recall being slicked up and options installed up top for race guns now. That is really what this one reminded me of. But it was interesting, so thanks for posting it sir.

twoguns
 
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ELB & Others,

I remember reading somewhere that this revolver was supposed to help policemen who are holding a lexan shield in one hand and don't want the slide of a semi-automatic to come back and whack the shield. Sounds like a pretty specialized instrument. Then on the other hand, eight rounds of .357 mag through a 5" tube doesn't sound like a bad idea.

We have to be happy the S&W designers stay busy coming up with new ideas. They get some winners and they get some losers. I sure like my models 10 & 37. Someday I'd like to buy a model 25.

Bruce
 

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Hello. I got to handle one of those at McBride's in Austin, TX.
The light mounted on the rail is too far out for strong-hand activation, unlike on a semi-auto where it is right in front of the trigger guard. So one would have to have a switch elsewhere. I think it is intended as a revolver comp/race gun, and also +1 on the specialized police shield holder use. Apparently the LEO holding a bullet-resistant shield during an entry might like a "one hand operation" weapon like a revolver: if the firearm fails to go bang, one merely pulls the trigger again to bring up a fresh round. Eight-shot .357 with moon clips would be nice, as noted up post.
 
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I think that it's envisioned as an "offensive" handgun for LE special weapons teams, much like that monster H&K auto that came out a few years ago (don't know model, don't care for H&K's so don't follow them). Certainly, it's a specialized and expensive item. Don't believe that it's legal in IDPA, but maybe IPSC or the Steel Challenge and such, which has classes for some pretty bizarre stuff.
 

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I don't think it's a gun that most guys would want. If the LEO's reject them and the sales don't take off I think they will be dropped from the line. Of course they could last a good while coming out of the custom shop. They could and probably will make them until they run out of parts.
 
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You might want to bear in mind that it will have the dreaded internal lock. Lightwieght frames, hard recoiling calibers and the internal lock have not been a good combination. ::)
 
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