FREE e-Newsletter
Important News - Hot Topics
Get them Now!

 
 
 

ESS Rollbar Tactical Sunglass - ESS Eyepro
The new ESS Rollbar Tactical interchangeable-lens sunglass has a broad wrap that...

Reviews : Arsenal

Smith & Wesson Night Guard Revolvers

S&W's new lightweight but powerful wheel guns make excellent backup and off-duty weapons.

May 01, 2009  |  by Paul Scarlata - Also by this author

The Night Guard line includes all of the other innovations that S&W has made to its revolvers in the last few years. It has a frame-mounted, spring-loaded firing pin; smooth trigger; checkered hammer; and a two-part barrel consisting of a rifled inner steel tube covered by an alloy shroud that permits the barrel to be mounted in the frame without exerting undue stress on the frame. Lastly, they all have S&W's key-operated Internal Security Lock, which can be used to prevent unauthorized firing.

While the Night Guard line is extensive, for POLICE Magazine I tested the one that I feel is the most practical of the bunch for concealed or off-duty carry, the Model 315NG.

The 315NG I received impressed me immediately. The fit, finish, and the quality of materials were what you would expect from the world's premier revolver manufacturer. While the trigger pull was a bit on the heavy side, backing off the mainspring adjustment screw a few turns made a noticeable difference without compromising cartridge ignition.

One-Handed Shooting

Even though it was a hot, humid afternoon I was anxious to see how the new Smith performed. Gathering together a selection of .38 Special ammunition I headed out to my gun club to see if the 315NG is accurate and reliable enough for a personal defense weapon.

The first chore was to ascertain what kind of accuracy could be produced firing it from an MTM Predator rest at 15 yards.

All four brands of ammo that I shot in this test produced more than acceptable groups and printed close enough to point of aim to please me. It should be noted that the sights appeared to be regulated for 158-grain ammo as these printed dead on to point of aim while the lighter, faster bullets grouped low.

After chronographing the four brands of ammo, I set up a pair of combat targets, belted on a Safariland holster, and ran the Smith through a series of drills at seven yards, firing the revolver with both supported and unsupported (one-handed) grips. Despite the 315NG's light weight, recoil control was excellent—helped in large part by the tacky Pachmayr grips—and it proved no problem at all to make fast, accurate follow-up shots. The sights provided fast target acquisition and easy transitioning.

To my way of thinking, Night Guard revolvers may be the driving force behind a renaissance of the medium frame wheelgun's popularity with police in this country. The K and L frame guns in particular would be equally adaptable for concealed carry by undercover officers or as off-duty/backup guns in those jurisdictions where carrying such weapons is permitted.

Paul Scarlata has served as an auxiliary police officer and is a frequent contributor to POLICE.

«   Page 2 of 2   »

Tags: Revolvers, Smith & Wesson, Firearms Reviews

Request more info about this product / service / company


Comments (2)

Displaying 1 - 2 of 2

otto johnson @ 11/2/2011 6:13 AM

all the world loves the colt subnose detective special look- but it did not stand up because people and department said- it could not take plus p- amo.?? ruger -rossi, all try to make the colt detective look, S&W make the look with model 60 from the model 36- the detective's dream gun-BUt, only 5 rounds? ..NOw take the night GUard guns- 7-8 rounds - with nice look of colt det. special, it would make the sub-nose detective dream revolver of the world for men/ women / collectors - and best home, off duty , back-up/ in the world.

ALAN HAPPS @ 7/27/2012 7:59 PM

I JUST GOT MY NEW S&W 329 NIGHT GUARD 44MAG AND LOVE IT. I HAD SEVERAL PEOPLE TRY TO TALK ME OUT OF GETTING BECAUSE THEY SAID THE RECOIL WOULD KICK MY BUTT. I THOUGHT IT HANDLED VERY WELL AND I LOVE SHOOTING IT. GREAT CONCEAL CARRY GUN!!

Join the Discussion





POLICE Magazine does not tolerate comments that include profanity, personal attacks or antisocial behavior (such as "spamming" or "trolling"). This and other inappropriate content or material will be removed. We reserve the right to block any user who violates this, including removing all content posted by that user.
Get Your FREE Trial Issue and Win a Gift! Subscribe Today!
Yes! Please rush me my FREE TRIAL ISSUE of POLICE magazine and FREE Officer Survival Guide with tips and tactics to help me safely get out of 10 different situations.

Just fill in the form to the right and click the button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.

If POLICE does not satisfy you, just write "cancel" on the invoice and send it back. You'll pay nothing, and the FREE issue is yours to keep. If you enjoy POLICE, pay only $25 for a full one-year subscription (12 issues in all). Enjoy a savings of over 60% off the cover price!

Offer valid in US only. Outside U.S., click here.
It's easy! Just fill in the form below and click the red button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.
First Name:
Last Name:
Rank:
Agency:
Address:
City:
State:
  
Zip Code:
 
Country:
We respect your privacy. Please let us know if the address provided is your home, as your RANK / AGENCY will not be included on the mailing label.
E-mail Address:

Police Magazine