S&W 686 US Customs Model
December 8, 2006
This is a neat S&W 686 in a limited edition made in 1988 for the Customs Service. They are marked CS-1. It has a round butt, 3 inch barrel and a darker brushed finish than is usual. I really like S&W revolvers before they started putting all the lawyer required frame locks etc. Anyway, the balance with the 3 inch barrel is really good. Accuracy is what you would expect from a quality revolver. The L Frame is a little large for deep concealment unlike the J frames but it fits nicely in an IWB holster or a traditional belt holster such as those made by Milt Sparks.
The weight of the L frame makes shooting full house 357’s comfortable to shoot. To me this is a perfect revolver for daily carry when you want the power of the 357 magnum load. The three inch barrel doesn’t seem like it would be that different from the four inch model but in this gun it does make a great deal of difference. Of course this gun will stand up to a lifetime of 357’s without a problem. The trigger is good but could stand a little TLC from a gunsmith. I’m spoiled by shooting the older S&W revolvers that had such wonderful triggers. Shooting groups of 2 inches at 25 yards is not a problem at all. The L frames have always been very accurate guns. From time to time you can find one of these models on Gunbroker.com or Gunsamerica. Prices have gone up considerably with some sellers asking as much as $600! Be patient you can find one at a more reasonable $400. They are well worth that price:-)