I just spent five days at my folks’ country place. My father is an avid shooter. In particular he is an exceptional revolver shooter. His ability with the small-frame revolver and his extensive experience with it led me to see the merits of the platform in the first place. Flying to his place for a change rather than driving I was limited in what I could bring concerning guns so I brought my Ruger SP101. A revolver is typically my gun of choice when flying anywhere as it is a far simpler defensive weapon to transport this way as not needing to pack and then load magazines upon arrival is a benefit. Also, considering the company I would be keeping, the revolver seemed appropriate.
I shot the SP101 for five days straight. What I again concluded was simply this: you can’t truly reach your full abilities with a particular weapon unless you devote fairly exclusive training priority to it for a significant duration of time. This can be seen in the approach of most serious competitors: they often use different guns for different divisions but they usually change seasonally, or in some sort of time frame. They spend significant time maximizing their trigger time on a particular platform. For myself the revolver is always a secondary weapon. I train with it because I am stuck with it due to my requirements for a very concealable firearm when dressed in ways that do not accommodate my usual autoloader. When I train with it I do so after doing my “standard” training with my auto. The problem, however, is that a “secondary” weapon will typically be only “secondary” in performance.
I can see a substantial improvement in my general abilities with the snub just after the past five days of shooting it exclusively. By the end of the week I was getting the gun deployed much faster. The small and curved grip is significantly harder, or perhaps just different, to acquire for a fast draw. Also, my follow-up shots were noticeably faster after running the double action weapon hard for those days. This focused training on the specific weapon has already payed off significantly. I find that I can resume a high standard of performance with an autoloader after working with a revolver for a period of time. The opposite, however, does not seem the case. The small-frame revolver demands dedicated attention if you wish to shoot it well.
What such experience leads me to debate is how I should approach my training with the snubby. Even during the summer months I still carry my auto more often. Therefore, should the snub remain secondary in training priority, or should I maximize my training with it and just carry it pretty much exclusively over the warm months? This means not carrying a double-stack auto at all times possible as is my preference. Perhaps as shooters we over-analyze and obsess about the wrong things but the quest to maximize our abilities with the weapons we rely on are part of the craft. Maybe I will run the wheel gun hard this summer and see what happens.