A local Sheriff’s Deputy asked me about the new Smith and Wesson .38 “Bodyguard” handguns.
I did a little light inquiry and here is what I have so far.
The few available demo guns were fitted together in time for the SHOT show. As a result there is only a limited number of folks to speak with who have had a chance to handle them and fewer still who have shot them.
The folks I did speak with and who have handled it were impresses.
They did note that with the cylinder release on the “hump” behind the cylinder, the release might (!) get activated if the shooter is in the habit of holding his thumb high on the back strap when planning for a pocket draw.
I though the same thing when I first heard that the release was centered high on the hump. Until that proves out one way or the other let’s give it the benefit of the doubt.
Assuming that the release will not open on pocket draw, this high center-line release location could work out nicely with the Ohio/Taylor revolver reload mechanics I like to advocate.
It was also noted the revolver’s frame is reported to be longer than the classic J-frame so none of the currently produced J-frame stocks will fit. I thought the Ruger missed the boat when the frame shape on their polymer LCR would not take any of the SP 101 stocks or fit into any of the existing SP 101 holsters. I think the same thing regarding S&W’s polymer “Bodyguard.” The only good news is that it might still fit into the ubiquitous J-frame holsters.
On an aside – And it may only be a pet peeve – but dosen’t S&W already produce a small J-frame sized revolver with the name “Bodyguard?”
Isn’t S&W “enclosed hammer” Quasimodo shaped J-frame called a Centennial? And I thought the Bodyguard had a shrouded hammer and could be thumb cocked.
Also isn’t the model 38 the number for the airweight Bodyguard?
Sooo the “new” S&W Bodyguard 38 is a polymer framed enclosed hammer Centennial but it is not to be confused with the “classic” S&W Bodyguard 38 which is an alloy framed shrouded hammer revolver?
I don’t have much but if the marketing department drops me a note and tells me they lost theirs I would be willing to send them my thesaurus and a used copy of Roy Jink’s History of Smith and Wesson.
Rather than repeat some good information on the specifications of the “Bodyguard” check out Tactical-Life’s article here.
Any early test-available pre-production guns should be out in the late Spring (S&W date-line) The Massachusetts compliant guns (for non LEO) should be available in the late Fall.
I (currently) have an offer to go to the range and try them out early in the Spring. I will bring a Ruger LCR and a LCP and let them go head-to-head.
Once I have some more info I will get it to you.