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Interesting about the trigger since they are identical guns except for the barrel length.
That's not accurate - the Redhawk and Super Redhawk are not the same action. They share a lot of common parts in the cylinder assembly and a common cylinder frame size and shape - minus the "nose" of the SRH and the grip frames/grip tenons.

The Redhawk is a unique action to the Super Redhawk. The Super Redhawks use a dual spring action, a mainspring/hammer spring and a trigger return spring. The Redhawks, on the other hand, utilize only one spring to drive both the hammer and trigger.

Super Redhawk - Note 2 springs: Parts 25 and 54


Redhawk - Note only one spring: Part 25 (Part 54 here is the trigger guard latch spring, does not touch the trigger). You can see how the mainspring - part 25 - drives the mainspring strut AND the trigger reset.

 

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Hizzie,

Magnum pistol powders are double-based. Such powders need longer barrels to maximize velocity because double-based powders reach maximum pressure at the end of their burning rates. That's why there is not much difference between a .38 Special +P and a .357 Mag out of a 2.75" barreled gun. Short-barreled magnums also produce excessive muzzle blast, muzzle flash, and recoil. The three combined make it darn near impossible to retain sight picture.

I would buy a 4" .45 Cold Redhawk in a second were I able to find one. To maximize .44 Rem Mag potential, one would need at least a 6" barrel.

BTW, many years ago I owned a Model 66 with a 2.75" barrel. After firing many magnum rounds, I sold it and went with a Model 60.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
SS-

Funny guy. I shoot magnum snubbies, a lot. They aren't that bad. Chrono some 357 and 38 out of an SP101. Big difference.
 

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RevolverGuy-

I came to that conclusion by comparing trigger reach. Without shifting my grip I get the sweet spot of my trigger finger on the Redhawk. I cannot get perfect placement with the Alaskan/Lett combo or any N frame.
No one can take away what works for you, but you should do some measurements of trigger reach on various guns before recommending Redhawks for others with small hands. My two Redhawks are clearly awkward for me, and I make it a point to maintain an exposed back strap to minimize the reach. I also find the Redhawk trigger too challenging to squeeze with the tip of my finger. Rugers will give light strikes, if you try to make a sweet trigger pull by messing with springs. I know this from experience and being one of my gunsmith's most steady customers.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
No one can take away what works for you, but you should do some measurements of trigger reach on various guns before recommending Redhawks for others with small hands. My two Redhawks are clearly awkward for me, and I make it a point to maintain an exposed back strap to minimize the reach. I also find the Redhawk trigger too challenging to squeeze with the tip of my finger. Rugers will give light strikes, if you try to make a sweet trigger pull by messing with springs. I know this from experience and being one of my gunsmith's most steady customers.


Other than that funky 5 shot L Frame S&W, do you know of a large Frame 44 magnum with a shorter trigger reach???


Backstrap to trigger face measurements:
SRH Alaskan w/Lett grips 71mm
RH 4.2" w/Hogue Tamers 69mm
GP100 w/Compact Letts 70mm
 

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Other than that funky 5 shot L Frame S&W, do you know of a large Frame 44 magnum with a shorter trigger reach???


Backstrap to trigger face measurements:
SRH Alaskan w/Lett grips 71mm
RH 4.2" w/Hogue Tamers 69mm
GP100 w/Compact Letts 70mm
I just returned from shooting my S&W 629 44 Mag with its big old Pachmayr Diamond Pro grips and had no trouble shooting it. I don't have measurements for you though.
 

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had an old blue RH in 44 mag that was my carry/knockaround/everything gun for as few years. Had some pitting here and there but it was a sweet shooing 44 mag. Like an imbecile, I SOLD it....thinking I'd get a 4" RH in stainless to replace it. When I saw one for sale the price tag put me off...regretted that since too.


I think SRH has the superior system as far as the lockwork, based on my current owner ship of the GP/SP series, and my admittedly not so great memory of the RH.

The RH will be better come time to find good grips for it, otherwise I like the 4" barel on that magnum.

NOw, if ruger made a 4-4 1/2" SRH...that would be perfect.

YET..it did seem easier to tune the trigger on the RH IIRC.

I'll go RH when I fond one. Alaskans ARE neat..but I like a bit of sight radius.
 

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Magnum pistol powders are double-based. Such powders need longer barrels to maximize velocity because double-based powders reach maximum pressure at the end of their burning rates. That's why there is not much difference between a .38 Special +P and a .357 Mag out of a 2.75" barreled gun.
It's amazing how often this is repeated. I have to assume by people who don't own a chronograph...

To the OP, interesting observation about the trigger. I find my Alaskan trigger is definitely worse than any of my GP100's. I would have thought the larger size would mean more mechanical advantage, and thus a lighter/smoother feeling trigger. In the same way the GP is way better than the SP. Or at least a comparable one. It's heavier and seems longer, though that part might be in my head.

I guess I'll have to try a Redhawk out. Though I sort of feel like if I'm going to be stuck with a metal backstrap, the smaller size of a 629 makes more sense than a Redhawk. The compact rubber grip is the best part about the Alaskan, to me.
 

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<snip>

I guess I'll have to try a Redhawk out. Though I sort of feel like if I'm going to be stuck with a metal backstrap, the smaller size of a 629 makes more sense than a Redhawk. The compact rubber grip is the best part about the Alaskan, to me.
I think you're on the right track there. The only reason I have a vintage Redhawk is to shoot heavy 45 Colt. The gun is awkward for me, while shooting my SW 629 seems very natural.
 

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I love to shoot my .44 mag Alaskan but I wish I would have purchased the 4.2" Redhawk instead. It's simply more versatile and is legal to hunt with in some of the states that I hunt in that have the 4" inch minimum barrel length requirement.

I have owned a 7.5" RH and a 4" S&W 629 in the past and I believe they both had a nicer trigger than the Alaskan as well.
All three were a pleasure shoot with standard 240 grn. magnum loads.
 

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I have a Super Redhawk that I bought on auction arms. It had been chopped to 4.5 inches by Wild West Guns. It was hardly used and I love it! It is a 454 casull. I had carried a 629 for years but wanted a little more power. I shoot 355 grain bear tooth bullets. You certainly know something happened when you pull the trigger but I don't mind the recoil
 

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I have an Alaskan .44 Mag and have no reach or other problems with the stock grips.
Had the RedHawk 4.2" been available at the time I would hove gone with it.
It is only logical that a 4.2" barrel is more accurate than a 2.5" barrel.
Both are too big to conceal carry for me, so the longer barrel is not a carry issue.
 

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thanks for an interesting post!

I find your comment about the Redhawk being a better fit for small hands than the SRH-Alaskan very interesting, and completely contrary to my experiences.

I have shot a Redhawk and a Super Redhawk side by side. They were the longer-barreled versions, but I was comparing 'fit' in the hand.

The SRH was more controllable in DA mode than the Redhawk for me, and I always have a bit of left over length in gloves when I wear them.

I wanted to like the Redhawk, but the SRH just felt like the better fit.

I wasn't sure, so I bought a S&W 629.

Shot that a bit and sold it to use funds for a 7.5" SRH.

The SRH just feel good in my hand.

The SRH-Alaskan can be made to feel the same way, with the same grips and same springs/stoning that I did.

I have a friend with a Redhawk. He had a gunsmith 'adjust' the rear of the frame to lightly reduce the length of reach. I would never do that. I cautioned him never to fire maximum loads from it [like Buffalo Bore +P+ loads].

It almost feels as good as my SRH.


Again- it is all about the reach to me.

So, SRH in 7.5" and SBH in 5.5" for me.

Thanks for an interesting write up!
 

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I have the srh with the compact Lett style.

No problem shooting 300 grainers.

I also have the redhawk 4.2. No problem firing the same but it stings a little after a while.
 

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I have my Redhawk I purchased in the early 80's. Always loved the gun but not so discreet to carry. Last year Ruger released a 2 1/2" Redhawk, I had my dealer/enabler order me one that day.
My understanding the Alaskan is based on the Super Redhawk and the Kodiak is based on the Redhawk frame.
I need to go thru a bunch more shells before I can give a honest comparison but the stubby is a handful to fire. I only recently replaced the grips to Pachmayr so that might have been enough to tame it. I am heading out shooting as soon as the rain stops. Both are .44 magnum

 
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