View Full Version : Charter arms .38 spl

03-02-2010, 5:57 PM
Ok- I need some owners' range reports here. How are the Charter Arms snub nose .38 revolvers? I'm looking for an inexpensive .38 and considering one of these. I need to know about their reliability, what is the quality like in these guns. How are the new ones compared to the old ones? Thanks!

03-02-2010, 6:48 PM
I had one for a few months. It's a nice little pistol and used it to qualify for my CCW. That being said, I moved up to a Glock 26. Much better for CCW as it feels only slightly heavier. I was never a Glock fan, sold both a G17 and G19 within a few months after buying them but love my G26.
The Charter Arms minus' for me were archaic and expensive training and self-defense ammo, low capacity, and heavier kick than G26.

03-02-2010, 6:56 PM
Charter Arms had a display at this years SHOT show in Las Vegas and I was able to handle several of their revolvers including the one you are asking about.

The fit and finish was not impressive. I was disappointed because their products look so good on paper and are made in the USA.

I recommend shooting one before buying it, but would not expect it to perform very well based on what I saw.

03-02-2010, 8:42 PM
I've never owned one, but I have shot one. Really did not like it - the trigger was horrible, the cylinder was locking up and not working for some strange reason (brand new gun!).

Anyway, if I were trying to go the inexpensive snubbie route, I would buy a Taurus over the Charter Arms any day, and I don't especially like Taurus, either.

03-03-2010, 7:17 AM
I've got a Taurus and I will not buy Taurus again. M47 states that the Charter is worse than a Taurus and I have no reason to doubt it.

Get a second job, sell some blood or just hang in there and save up to buy a Ruger or a S&W. Cheap does not represent a bargain in this instance. And by the way .38 ammo is more expensive that 9mm so if you are price conscious, factor that in to your equation for total cost of ownership.

03-03-2010, 12:27 PM
Thanks for the advice guys. I have pretty much ruled out the taurus and rossi due to quality concerns, and I was hoping to learn about the Charter Arms revolvers. Looks like I'll probably just get a S&W, I know they are the best, I just thought I might get by with a less expensive one for carrying and beating up in general, but I don't want to waste my $ on something I'll regret buying later. Already done that a couple times in the past!

03-03-2010, 12:42 PM
I like my Taurii and Rossis, but whatever. Charter Arms I don't know about.


03-03-2010, 12:43 PM
At the end of last year, I bought a Charter Arms Bulldog in .44 Spl because it fit exactly what I was looking for(while on sale at least).

I've shot it a few times and while I've experienced 100% reliability, I'm not sure how it'd hold up to regular use. I didn't buy it for that, so it still seems ideal for the role it's filling.

The build quality is OK at best, the machining of the barrel is ROUGH! Cleaning lead out of it is a pain as it's not smooth.

I have an older Taurus M85 and I'd recommend it for build quality over the Charter Arms. In my experience however, both shoot well for what they are.

03-04-2010, 9:22 PM
Well thanks to y'all's input, and mainly my impression with the trigger and overall finish and fit of the gun, I bought a new model 85 Taurus today. My first Taurus, we'll see how I did once I get it out of gun jail. Thanks again.