I know this is a debate that will never have a proven winner on either side. But just for fun, let’s get the party started.
Neither a semi-automatic or a revolver is perfect. They both have pros. They both have cons. Which is why a true winner will never be crowned! But I want to see what you all think. And if you know someone who is a new shooter or someone who is considering their first gun purchase, this post might help sort out the pros and cons in an easy to understand way.
- Hold more ammunition.
- Are easier to reload.
- Are easy to clean
- More parts to disassemble, clean and put back together.
- There’s a wider variety in how the parts fit together.
- Can be harder to conceal than revolvers because of their size and weight.
- A semi-auto will often feel like there’s less recoil than a revolver, even if the physics of the recoil are the same in both guns.
Why does this matter?
- If you’re fighting off multiple attackers, your gun can hold more ammunition.
- If you’re using the gun for hunting or target practice you may prefer not having to reload as often.
- If you do have to reload, it’s faster and easier than a revolver.
- The semi-auto has major components: barrel, slide, guide rod, frame and magazine.
- Referring to your owner’s manual may be necessary to get to know how to put the gun back together. Once you learn, this is a fast process.
- Many beginner shooters prefer a gun with less recoil.
- Can sometimes be able to load more than one type of ammunition.
- Are lighter weight than semi-autos.
- Can often use more powerful ammo than a semi-auto of the same weight.
- Accuracy is more important with this gun due to the limited number of rounds it can hold before needing to be reloaded.
- Costs less than semi-automatics.
- Are reliable.
- Are easy to clean.
- Are slightly more easy to conceal than semi-autos due to their smaller size and reduced weight.
- Are easy to understand and use.
- Can feel like there’s more recoil than in a semi-auto, because there are less parts to “absorb” the movement of the bullet.
Why does this matter?
- Being able to use more than one type of ammo allows the user to have some more flexibility over how they use the gun.
- If you’re using the gun for hunting or target practice you may not care if you have to reload more often than a semi-auto.
- For a small person, a person with less arm strength, or someone who just won’t carry a heavy gun on a daily basis, the lighter weight could encourage then to carry more regularly.
- Stopping power is what a lot of people want a gun for. BUT, with only 6 shots, your accuracy had better be dead on or else you might be in trouble.
- For the budget-conscious buyer, a revolver is a way to get into having a gun without spending as much money.
- A revolver is a simpler machine than a semi-auto, there are less things that can go wrong.
- Cleaning a revolver means cleaning one long barrel and five or six chambers in the cylinder.
- They’re just simpler machines with less moving parts than semi-autos. Whether you consider this an advantage or disadvantage is at the heart of why which one is better is a question with no right answer!
Based on this simple list, revolvers appear to have a slight advantage. Now, readers…tell us your thoughts. But keep the comments civil please!