In spite of the fact that the self-loading handgun has caused a serious decline in the double-action (DA) revolver’s popularity, there is one wheelgun that has remained relatively unaffected, the venerable snubbie. Chambered for the .38 Special and occasionally in .357 Magnum, the ubiquitous snubbie continues to sell to a wide spectrum of the gun-buying public. The reasons are varied, but there is no question that the ol’ snub is still very much alive.
It could be because its compactness is attractive, especially to the ladies, who love to toss it into their purses and head on out to the supermarket or convenience store. Or it might be due to its inherent simplicity in comparison to a self-loader. Just open ‘er up, drop the cartridges into the cylinder, close it and you’re ready for business. Both reasons are valid, but there is one characteristic of the snubbie, particularly in .38 Special, which is rarely discussed: how well it does or does not perform.