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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi gents,

I've read over the years how Kuhnhausen opined that the King Cobra is the strongest of the mid-frame .357s, so I was interested when a friend offered to trade me (plus some cash to me) for a .45 I wasn't using much (he needed a CCW).

I've been reloading .357s/.38s since the mid-'80s, but right now I only had a J-frame in .357 (plus a number of .38s) to shoot the reloads in. My friend's blued 6" King Cobra sounded like something I would actually use quite a bit, and something that would be good to carry on hikes as well.

So, I made the trade. The King Cobra is a pretty early one (SN = A46XXKC), and it's in about 95% condition (it has the beginnings of a line around the cylinder and a couple of small scratches here and there). No box, no papers - but, then, I got it as a shooter. Timing is fine (though the bolt drops a little earlier than I'd like - that line around the cylinder is going to get more noticeable) and lockup is solid. I don't think it was shot much at all (my friend never shot it, but the fellow he got it from clearly had, somewhat).

I'm looking forward to shooting it this weekend - anyone have King Cobra info that might be of interest?
 

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Hi there Erich,

I owned a Stainless Steel King Cobra that I used to shoot in Bowling Pin Matches. It was smooth, tight and a little more classy looking than the Smith 686's I used at the time. I had no reservations of loading it up with Federal 125 grain HP's to shoot, because I was confident that the frame area ahead of the cylinder was stout enough to handle the more violent loads.

It had the 6" tube and I really liked it because my eyes could pick up the red front sight fast. I found the action just a tad more smoother out of the box than the 686 and became smoother over time with use.

The King Cobra was also the first handgun that I used to actually handgun hunt with on deer in Virginia and I am confident it will handle any medium size game you might encounter on the trail.

Please let us know how it shoots this weekend.

Chris
 

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I don't have a King Cobra, but I do have a Trooper MkIII....similar weight and feel, if I am not mistaken. I know what you mean about that 'line around the cylinder'....mine has that also. I've only used mine as a hunting gun (6" barrel), but I have been quite pleased with it. If I am not mistaken, I think Colt dropped production of the Trooper to make the King Cobra.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I understand that to be correct.

The gun is interesting: it has an uglier double-action pull than those on the Smith .357s I've owned (feels like it's stacking . . .), but the SA pull is really wonderful.

It's interesting having such a heavy barrel on a .357, too. It points remarkably well, though.
 

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Yes, I believe that the Trooper Mark III and Peacekeeper were both built on the same frame size V?, but Colt's frame size designations are eluding me this afternoon. ???

The heavier barrel will be welcome when shooting full house .357 magnum loads. :-/

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, I took it out Saturday afternoon, and was pretty thrilled. I shot Win-USA 130-gr .38 spls (not reknowned for accuracy), Fiocchi 147(?)-gr .357s, and S&B 158-gr .357s. I put 150 rounds through the gun (a box of each), and then cleaned it right on the range bench.

With any of these loads, single action, I got 10-yd 5-shot groups under .5". :) I was surprised to see that the points of impact were virtually identical - I suspect at 25 yds they might start moving apart somewhat. The double action pull was heavy and felt stack-y, but provided perfectly acceptable accuracy: 1.5" groups at 10 yds, about what my Glocks will put out.

The gun was incredibly pleasant to shoot: it was like shooting a 6" N-frame. The King Cobra's heavy barrel really eats up the recoil and the muzzle rise, yet the gun packs like an L-frame. (I found I could use the same Bianchi model 111 crossdraw I bought for a 4" K-frame many years ago.) For some reason, the L-frame sized cylinder really makes the King Cobra seem less bulky.

So, I'm really pleased with my King Cobra. My friends were impressed with the groups it produced, and they remarked about how pleasant the gun was to shoot with full-house .357s.

I'm really fired up about working up a nice 170- or 180-grain load for this puppy. Though I suppose I could just buy some more Buffalo Bore . . . . ;)
 

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Hi there Erich,

Thank you for the follow-up evaluation of your new aquisition.

You sound like you are very happy with your King Cobra and congradulations.

It sounds like you most definately have a "keeper".

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes indeed, thanks!

I want to go shoot some more, but - tho the weather was in the mid-70s on Saturday when I was shooting - there's now 10" of snow in my back yard. Gotta love the high desert! :)
 
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