Survival Guides

Home Defense Pistols

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  • Revolvers are stupid simple to use and don’t even have a safety. Anyone can be taught to use a revolver in five minutes or less.
  • Revolvers often have longer barrels than semi autos, which usually makes them feel more accurate to the new shooter.
  • Revolvers are available in some powerful magnum loads, like .357 Magnum and .44 Magnum.


  • Revolvers hold fewer cartridges than even the most compact semi autos.
  • Reloading a revolver can be accomplished quickly in practiced hands, but at the end of the day, the average revolver shooter will never be able to reload as fast as the average semi auto shooter.
  • Few revolvers have accessory rails to fit things light lights or lasers – in fact, only one revolver that we know of comes with a rail.

While it remains an individual choice, we really can’t recommend that your first pistol for home defense be a revolver. There are two reasons why we can’t in good conscience tell you to buy a revolver;

1) ammunition capacity, and 2) reloading speed. This isn’t the time to engage in one of those theoretical discussions on shot placement, either. We know that just one well placed shot is enough to bring down an attacker, but we also know that it is extremely difficult to make that perfectly placed shot even if you’re well trained during a high stress situation. Also, there is nothing to say that there will only be a single attacker.

For that reason, we recommend you purchase a semiautomatic pistol as your first home defense weapon. Even if you had one fifteen round magazine in the pistol, and two more fifteen rounders in your pocket, you’d still be bringing 45 rounds to the fight. At best, with a revolver, you’d have eight rounds (six on most wheel guns!), and then two more eight round speed loaders for a total of 24 rounds. Plus, you’d be hard pressed to use those speed loaders as fast as the average person could do a magazine change. We feel that the extra twenty rounds you’d get in this scenario is a deal killer for the revolver.

This isn’t to say you can’t own a revolver – just don’t lean on it as a self defense weapon for home use at first.

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