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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What was the 342, about the same revolver as the 340 except 38+P instead of .357 ? It's a Centennial shaped frame

I know the cylinder is titanium but how about the frame, Scandium, is that just a name for Aluminum ? Local dealer has a nice one used.

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Hello. It is my understanding that scandium is not a synonym for aluminum but a strong and even lighter alloy. It is light and to a degree that is an advantage but it also brings negatives. The aluminum-framed AirWeight line of revolvers are plenty light but heavy enough that their recoil impulse does not dictate ammunition type, ie: "Jacketed Ammunition Only" and so forth as is the case with the AirLite line or revolvers using titanium and scandium.

One fellow wrote of the super light revolvers: "Scandium hurt the handium", referring to felt recoil.

Certainly, some folks will like these super-light revolvers and others will shy away, but aluminum and scandium are different critters altogether.

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the quick reply. It's awfully light to handle that's for sure. No doubt it would be a handful with any strong 38 load. I guess it's a trade off do you need 12 oz and if so willing to put up with what must be punishing recoil.

Could be why it's for sale used at less than half the new price. I know the dealer pretty well. He may let me shoot a box through just to see. If it was shoot-able and someone already was experienced with J frames think it would be a viable carry revolver ?

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Hello. I suspect so, but being wedded (at least now) to the LHP +P for protection purposes, I prefer the very slightly heavier AirWeight line.

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I have one. I like it. When it came time to pay a bill last year I sold the 442 instead. <sob>

The Scandium is an alloying element used to prevent fatigue failure in aluminum alloys. The amounts used are too small to noticably change the weight of the frame. The major weight reduction comes from the titanium cylinder and aluminum barrel shroud. (This info was listed in the S&W catalog the year they intro'd Scandium alloys.)

I hate the fact that it won't handle the 158gr LSWCHP +P loads, but the 125gr Golden Sabres I have on hand seem OK.

Not tried the new Gold Dot load at a buck+ a pop. Prolly won't.

Actually I'd not worry if all I could shoot in it was a hardcast Keith bullet at 750 fps or so. The 342 does shoot lead fine at lower speeds, especially cast loads with a real crimping groove. No problems with wadcutters either, tho I don't like the idea of scrubbing lead from the chanber throats in Ti cylinders.

I usually practice with WinClean or jacketed promo loads. Before I came into the Golden Sabre loads I carried Nyclads in it.

In short, I like the 342 just fine. It's totally rust resistant, light and handy. Not being able to use that one load is worth the sacrifice if these attributes appeal to you.


Regards,

Pat
 
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Definitely shoot a box through before buying (although if your experience is like mine, you won't shoot more than a couple of cylinders full before stopping). I shot a scandium revolver with standard pressure 38 and it hurt my hand to shoot it. However, I can see how it would be an easy weapon to carry.
 

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One reason a lot of Airlite Ti guns are on the used market is cops buy them, forgetting that to carry one they have to shoot 60 rounds twice in one day for quals. Thats no fun at all. The guy I got mine from qualified with Nyclads or WinClean. I got his 342 when he went to the (I think) 340PD, in .357mag. He wanted it for the sights, not the caliber. He still uses the same loads as before.

For the rest of us, no rule says we have to burn a whole box of ammo in one session. Shoot what's in the cylinder each range trip, and practice with other revolvers some.

My .02 only, of course. :)


Regards,

Pat
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Giving it some serious thought. I can practice all I want with my 3 inch 36 and just carry the titanium gun. All the practice it should need is a couple of rounds every time I take something else to the range. Best thing would be if I never need it.

We have a 1 handgun every 30 days rule. Since I just bought one have to wait it out. That will give me time to see if I can get the Interarms PPK working propery. With both I can sort them out and sell one off later.

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